For out-takes, Gameplay and Storytelling notes, and other miscellaneous rambling, visit Richmond Behind-the-Scenes

Outside Interference - Part 3



Kyle Centowski is 57; Willow Centowski is  55
Georgia Newson is 15; Gavin Newson is 29


September 2025

Georgia looked up at the clock.  How long did it take to get from Richmond to Redwood City, anyway?  What was taking them so long?


This was, without doubt, the worst day of her whole life.  She'd been too small to remember the day her mother had died, although the day they'd moved out of the Centowski house had been pretty bad... but this was worse, by far.  Nothing else came close to how she'd felt, finding her brother lying motionless on his bedroom floor. She's thought he was dead or something.


She tried to push the memory away before she started crying again.  Gavin said that Garrett was fine.  But he wasn't fine, he'd been sick for days.  And, if he was fine, then how come they were still here at the hospital?

She wasn't going to ask Gavin, he'd just get angry again.  Well, he was going to get angry anyway, when he found out what she'd done, but she preferred to delay it as long as possible.  He'd already been angry at her once today, when she'd wanted to contact their siblings.  That was when he'd said that Garrett was fine, and that there was no need to worry anyone else, this late at night.  She said she was calling them anyway, and he said he'd take her phone off her.  She said she'd use a payphone, and he reminded her that she needed money for that - she'd left the house in so much of a hurry she'd forgotten to bring any, and he knew it.


Yeah, he'd been angry, and in the end, to keep the peace, she agreed not to call her siblings.  However, he hadn't said anything about not calling the Centowskis.  She needed them here, to take her home with them.  She wasn't going back with Gavin!

At least, she hoped she wasn't.  Every time she'd bought up the idea of moving back with Kyle, he'd reminded her that Gavin was their legal guardian now.  That might be true, but part of her couldn't help but wonder if maybe the Centowskis didn't want them back now.  After all, they were getting really old now, almost 60, and they had heaps of grandchildren.  They might not want a couple of teenagers around any more.

And what if they didn't?  What, then?  She didn't really have another plan.  Ginger and Andrew's house was too small, Gabriella lived in a 2-room apartment and Gallaghar in a dorm.  What if they didn't even -

Georgia scrambled to her feet as the door burst open.


Gavin looked up, too.  "What are you doing here?"
"I called them," said Georgia.
"You had no right to - "
Georgia took a breath to answer, but Willow cut her off.
"We can talk about that later," he said.  "Right now I just want to know if Garrett is ok."
"He's fine, he only fainted," said Gavin.


"He fainted because he was sick and you made him go to work because we can't afford to take a day off!" Everyone turned around and stared at Georgia.

"He fainted because he ate something bad and got food poisoning." said Gavin, with an annoyed sigh.
"He ate something bad because you lost your job and we can't afford to waste any food."  She blinked, battling against the tears that were stinging her eyes.
"Hell, Georgia, is everything my fault now?" he yelled.
"It is and you know it...  you don't even care about us, you just care about youself!" The tears won, and she wiped her hand over her eyes in a vain attempt to stop them.  "If you cared about us, you wouldn't make us stay with you when we don't want to..."

"We've talked about this - "
"We're not gonna stay with you any more and you can't make us!" she sobbed.  "That's why I called Kyle and Willow - I'm going home with them, and so is Garrett.  You're not forcing us any more."  She turned to the Centowskis, trying to gauge their reaction, but their expressions told her nothing.  Please...

"Georgia, stop this," Gavin said, putting a hand on her arm.
Then it was like something broke inside her, and she pulled roughly away from him.  "Don't touch me," she yelled.  "Don't come anywhere near me!  I... I hate you... I... " she stammered between sobs.


"You've got no right to - " Gavin started, but she barely heard him, barely noticed Kyle signal sharply for him to stop.  She was aware of Willow's arm around her shoulders.  She wanted to say something to her, but all she could do was cry.


"Come on," Willow said.  "We need to get out of here for a bit."  When Georgia didn't move, she gave her a gentle push towards the door.
---

It was some time later when Kyle and Willow finally met up again, in the hospital cafe.


Where's Georgia," Kyle asked.
"With Garrett," said Willow.  "They said he could have visitors now and I figured it was better for her to see him alone."
"Is he really ok?" 
Willow nodded.  "They're keeping him overnight to be on the safe side, but he'll be fine.  Did you get anywhere with Gavin?"


Kyle laughed dryly.  "Not a chance.  Georgia's right about one thing, he really can't see things from anyone else's point of view but his own.  It's like he couldn't even see how upset she was... he's so obsessed with being the only one who can take care of his family, he can't even see that he's failing them even more than he did the first time."
"He couldn't see it the first time, either... "
"You know, I think he could," Kyle said thoughtfully.  "I think that's why it's so important to him this time.  It's like restoring his honour or something."
"That's crazy... there's no dishonour in a 17 year old boy not being able to provide for 5 siblings.  No one would expect - "
"Try telling him that!  He's so stubbon..."
"So is Georgia!  She's determined not to go back."


"So what do we do?" 
Kyle shook his head.  "Gavin has legal custody of them, but if they don't want to stay, they won't.  Barring locking them up... but, you know, I'm not comfortable with them going back there now, even if they wanted to..."
"... which means involving social services again, and that's going to get messy.  If nothing else, Gavin will never forgive us."
"It wouldn't be so bad if he could at least get another job.  I mean, how hard can it be?  I know he got fired from the last job, but still... he has a business degree with honours, that must count for something..."


For a long while, the only sound was the barista cleaning up and preparing to close for the night.
"That's it," Kyle said suddenly.
"That's what?"
"That's the answer." A slow smile spread across his face.  "Why didn't we think of it sooner? He has a business degree!"
"I'm not getting what - "


"Wait," he cut her off.  "I need to think about this a bit."
"But - "
"No, give me a minute... I think I have an idea that just might solve this for everyone."

---

 "You want me to work for you?"


"I need you to work for me," Kyle said ."The shop's a mess.  I don't understand the accounts, the bills are behind, I can't  figure out - "
"It sounds like you just need to hire an accountant," said Gavin.


Kyle shook his head.  "It's more than that... the whole business side of things, setting prices, ordering... I have a manager who's great with that sort of thing, but he had to take leave unexpectedly, and I don't think I can handle it on my own until he's back."
 "... and you just happened to realize this now, right?"

"Only because Willow reminded me that you've got a business degree.  Believe me, I wish I'd thought of it sooner... maybe I wouldn't have made such a mess of - "
"He's telling the truth!"


They turned to see Georgia standing in the doorway.
"He's telling the truth," she repeated. "He really is useless at that stuff,"
"Thanks," said Kyle.
"I'm trying to help!" she said.  "And it's true.  You already underpaid me twice... "
"We fixed that up..."
"And you overpaid me once, too!"
"I did?"


"Uh... yeah," she said, realizing that she'd trapped herself.  "I kind of didn't tell you about that one."
"It doesn't matter," said Gavin. "He'd work it out anyway when he does a payroll reconciliation."
"A what?" said Kyle.
Gavin groaned.
"See, I told you he was useless," said Georgia.

"Ok, ok, I get it," said Gavin.  "You need some help.  So what's in it for me?"
"Room and board for the twins, until you get back on your feet.  And for you, if you want."


"For me?" Gavin repeated.  "What - you actually expect me to - ?"
"I'm hoping you will," said Kyle.  "I've got no desire to separate you and the twins, but you're their guardian, but that means you need to support them, not the other way around.  This way, you'll be doing that."
"By working for you?"
Kyle nodded.

"But I don't want to work in your little shop forever, and you said yourself that it's only while your manager's away.  What happens when he gets back?  I'd be back where I started."


Kyle shook his head.  "It probably won't be full-time job, at least not once you sort everything out.  You'll have some free time... use it to find a permanant job that you do want, sort things out with your wife... do whatever you need to do to get your life back on track, without the pressure of wondering how you're going to pay the next bill or look after the kids."

"Gavin, please," said Georgia.
She and Gavin stared at each other for a long moment, then he turned back to Kyle.
"Ok," he said.  "Ok, you win."  He started to say something else, but was drowned out by Georgia's cry of delight.


"Thank you... thank you!  We're going home!  I'm gonna go tell Garrett!"

Gavin's shoulders slumped as she ran out of the room.
"Gavin, it's not about winning," Willow said gently.  "It's about doing what's right for you brother and sister... and for you.  You must see that..."


"Whatever you say," Gavin said, as he turned and walked away.

----

So, I finally got the twins (and Gavin) back with the Centowskis, where I want them.  Garrett rolled the 'get food poisoning' ROS, which landed him in hospital, and in the same play session, Gavin lost his job due to poor work performance.  When a sim loses their job in this way, I don't let them get another one for a while, which seems realistic to me.  They didn't have a lot of money to start with, and it ended with the first visit in my game by the Repo Man in a long time. So, they're back with the Centowskis, and I figure Gavin's pride has taken a huge hit in the process.

In game, Gavin will be just working in the shop like Andrew, so we're back to two full-time staff (in addition to Kyle) and one part-time (Georgia; like Autumn, I only let her work the hours that a teen could work, around school).  Like Andrew, Gavin has no badges, but I'm giving him a bronze sales badge, and a bronze restocking badge to get started, because I figure he must have learned something relevant to get his business (economics, in-game) degree. :)

It made me think about badges and college degrees... I can imagine some other tie-ins - for example, something crafty for the sims who study art, or gardening for sims who study biology for a career in natural science.  Maybe I'll make them an extra requirement for graduation or something.

7 comments:

  1. Okay, I'm feeling just the teensiest bit bad for Gavin now. He definitely hasn't done the right thing by his siblings but I can understand his reasoning just a little bit more now. It's hard to admit you need help.

    I hope this job works out for Gavin and Kyle. Maybe it'll even smooth their relationship over a bit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was trying to get a little sympathy for Gavin, and it seemed like a good place... because seeing his sister so happy to NOT be living in his home anymore has got to hurt!

      Delete
  2. Wow, I'm glad they're back, but I can see how Gavin would be upset, hopefully he will be able to see that they are trying to save his pride by having him work-it's not a hand out, it's a hand up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like that, a hand up not a hand out - and regardless of what Gavin thinks, Kyle really does need the help. It just might take Gavin a bit of time to see it that way.

      Delete
  3. What a great update. I like how you solved some of their issues although I can see this thing with Gavin cropping up again. He's just not willing to let go of this idealized version of how things are/were suppose to be.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Totally agree with this. It's nice that some of the problems were solved but it seems that Gavin likes to do things the hard way.

      Delete
    2. Yes, Gavin won't be happy with this situation, no matter how good it might seem, just because its not the way he thinks things should be. It's going to take a while for him to get past that way of thinking.

      Delete

Thanks for reading and commenting!