Connections


Angel Go is 19; Danny Tarro is 19; Ivy Pitts is 19; Richard and Alan Gold are 20; Lewis Gold is 18; Marie Centowski is 18.

January 2026 - SSU Semester 1.2

SSU previous update
(This is relevant, too)


Angel lay back on her bed and tried not to listen to the laughter of her roommates downstairs.


Spending the Christmas break at home had left her feeling all the more lonely. She missed Tosha and Vivian, and Meadow and Jamie, more than she'd expected. Being here was better than going back to RCT and all the bad memories, no doubt about it, but she still felt more alone than ever.

She leaned over and picked up her phone. Hopefully Marie would be back from class now.


She almost laughed out loud with relief when Marie answered, more grateful than ever right now for the one friend she had made at SSU.

It wasn't that she didn't get on with her roommates. They were very nice for the most part, she just hadn't developed a friendship, or even come to feel a connection, to any of them.

 Part of the reason was that almost everyone here was part of a couple.


Vivian's step-sister Ivy was with Danny...


... and Julia was with Alan...


... and Anna was with... well... half of the male population of SSU, if the rumors were to be believed.


At least Alan's brother Richard was single, as far as she knew, but even when he wasn't caught up in studying, his mind seemed to be 1000 miles away.

Romantic relationships aside, everyone here seemed connected to each other - not just at the house, where you'd expect it because it was owned by Ivy's extended family, but at Marie's dorm as well.

There was Alan and Richard's younger brother Lewis. He had a girlfriend, Amaya...


... who was close friends with Ivy...


... and also with Sam, who was still in high school but seemed to spend most of her time there anyway, with her boyfriend Matthew.

One of the reasons she'd even started talking to Marie in the first place, was that she'd recognized her last name - it wasn't all that common, even though Jamie had come from a large family.


It turned out that he and Marie were cousins, although having grown up in different cities, they'd barely met. But it was nice to have at least some connection, and their friendship had grown from there.

A half an hour later, Angel was at the dorm. It was a new building, only about a year old, and Angel was fascinated by it. It wasn't like any dorm she'd seen at RCT - the rooms were huge.


It was an expensive place to live, but that was the appeal of it - it was built in response to dropping student numbers, a way to lure well-off kids away from the city and back to SSU.


It seemed to work, and Angel could see why - she'd pick this place anytime, if she had the money for it.

They spent an enjoyable afternoon together.


Marie's room was a little cluttered right now despite the size. She'd been growing plants on her little balcony, but for the winter she'd dragged all the pots indoors. Every now and then, she'd wander away from the conversation to pull off a dead leaf or a blade of grass growing in the pot.

"I want a pet but we're not allowed them here," she told Angel. "Do you think they'd notice if I got a parrot."
"They would," Angel said, thinking of the problems they'd had with Tosha's noisy bird back home. "Maybe get a fish. They're much quieter."
Marie shrugged. "Less fun, though."
"I guess," said Angel.


"Michael thinks you're cute," said Marie.
"Uh... that was a change of subject," said Angel, trying to avoid looking Marie in the eye.
"You like him, too, don't you?"


"No... uh... not really... I mean... I'm not looking for anyone right now. Marie looked skeptical. "I'm not!" Angel said, and she meant it. Between her first boyfriend dumping her for her best friend, and the incident with her professor at RCT, she honestly didn't care if she never had another romantic relationship in her life.
---- 

It was early evening when she got back to the house. She'd almost forgotten that they were having dinner together tonight, something they tried to do at least once every week or so.


The others had already started eating when she sat down.
"We're going," said Alan. He turned to Angel. "What about you?"
"Uh... going where?"
"To the concert at the Student Union Saturday night."


"I don't know," she said.
"You should," said Ivy, "Danny, you should come, too."
I can't," he said. "You know I have to go home to my family."


"But It'd be fun! Come on, one weekend won't make a difference"
"One weekend will make a difference. I go home every weekend. You know that, you always knew that. If you don't like it, too bad. That's the way it is."
"I'm sorry," Ivy said. "I just thought - "

"I don't know about this family thing," Anna teased Danny. "Are you sure you haven't got some secret lover back there?"
Danny's face reddened. "Well, you could ask Richard all about that, too," he muttered.


"What?!" Richard stared at Danny, then at Ivy, who shook her head, mouthing 'no'. Danny didn't see any of that, though. He barely looked up from the table.

"What the hell do you mean by that?" Richard demanded again.
"You know what I mean!!"


Danny shoved back his chair so suddenly that Angel jumped. He stormed out of the room.  Ivy and Richard stared at each other for a moment, then she got up and ran after Danny.

----

"Ok, what's going on?" Ivy asked, closing the bedroom door behind them.
"What do you mean?"


"You know what I mean," she said. "Something's been going on with you for weeks now. It's gotten worse since Christmas, hasn't it?"  When Danny didn't reply, she went on. "Look, I know you think I don't like you talking about your family, but if something's wrong then tell me. I know something's worrying you, I just wish I knew what."


"Why would you care? So long as you get to the concert... "
"Forget the concert. It's not important."
"It was a few minutes ago."
"Only because I wanted you to be here for it. I know you need to be there for your family, but I just thought for one weekend... "
"I don't know why its such a big deal. You've got Richard to go with... "

"That doesn't - oh, God!" She said suddenly. "That's it, isn't it? You're jealous of Richard!" She stared at him, stunned.
"I don't know why you're so surprised," he said. "I mean, the two of you can't keep away from each other. How am I supposed to feel?"

"Danny, Richard's gay."


"What?"

Ivy stared at him. "You... you do know what that means, don't you?"
"Of course I know what it means!" Danny said. "But... Richard? How do you know?"
"He told me."
"And you believed him?"
"Of course. Anyway, have you ever seen him with a woman?"
"Have you ever seen him with a man?"


"As... as a matter of fact, I have." She looked away uncomfortably. "I... he... last summer, at the beach. There was this guy, Steven, and they... they were in a tent, Danny! Can you believe it? I was so embarrassed, the whole campground knew what was going on. I couldn't even look at Richard afterwards." She started talking faster. "But... but, you know, it turns out Steven's a really nice guy, and now they've got this long-distance thing going... but you mustn't tell anyone about this, he doesn't want his parents to find out yet. I wasn't really supposed to tell anyone, but if I can't trust my boyfriend... " She trailed off, running out of breath.


"Oh... hell..." Danny muttered.
Ivy took his hands. "Don't feel bad about it. I guess it was an easy mistake to make."


She smiled, pulling him closer. "And, you know, I kind of like that you want to keep me all to yourself."


----


SSU Semester One Grades:

Ivy Pitts - A+
Julie Beckett - A+
Alan Gold - A+
Richard Gold - B+ (previously academic probation)
Lewis Gold - B
Danny Tarro - B (previously academic probation)
Matthew Langerek - B-
Anna Phoenix - C+ (previously academic probation)
Amaya London - C
Marie Centowski - C


(boy, I'm getting a lot of students here now...  )


----

Ok, show of hands anyone who thought it was Ivy in the tent with Richard? :)  

Steven actually appears in that update - he's the guy in the blue and green swimming trunks, shaking hands with Richard. He and Richard were ACR-driven into the tent (as were Anna Phoenix and the vacation townie she's pictured with)... and every time it happened, Ivy was there like the Mrs Crumplebottom of Twikki Island, shaking her little fists at them and yelling. I had trouble finding a picture for the update that didn't have her visible outside the tent scolding them (she's actually behind it in the one I used)... she's definitely not into public WooHoo, and apparently doesn't think anyone else should be, either!
Anyway, Richard and Steven kept rolling wants for each other so I gave them a couple of dates and they've fallen in love. Here's the happy couple...



Hopefully, they'll be living together next semester. As for my less-than-happy couple (trio, actually), I'm using Danny, Ivy and Candice's wants as a guide to how this all pans out. 

Oh, and Michael (dorm-mate of Marie and Matthew) really does think Angel is cute. 



Couldn't catch the hearts on camera, but they were there... so far, no ACR action and no wants rolled, though.

4 comments:

  1. Whoa, didn't see that coming, you're sneaky :) great twist, now I wonder how Danny is going to respond.

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    1. Thanks, I'd already established that Danny was jealous of Richard, so when the tent thing happened I couldn't resist having some fun with it :) Then Danny slept with Candice and, where I had imagined Danny would be left feeling a bit embarrassed, he's now got a wayyy bigger mess on his hands.

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  2. You and I have about the same amount of students right now, I think. It definitely makes playing through uni take longer than usual but it's fun at the same time. I'm graduating one student this year and moving in two the year after, so I'll have more soon.

    I think I remember being worried it was Ivy in the tent! I'm glad it wasn't though. Richard and Steven look cute together.

    And aw, Michael! Is he single? Any chance of anything happening between him and Angel? I know she says she doesn't care if she never has another romance but maybe the right guy could change her mind.

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    1. This is one of my two universities, although there's only 4 playable students at the other one. I'm hoping to balance things out a bit with Richard moving and 2 of my 3 soon-to-be-students going to the city university. It is fun having the bigger number, although this place is getting a few too many right now!

      Yes, Michael is single, and playable - descendant of another branch of the Green family (I REALLY need to do a family tree for these guys!). I'm guessing the right guy could change her mind, although they've barely spoken to each other at this point... I'll just see where they take it :)

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Thanks for reading and commenting!