A Christmas Eve Story 04

December 29th, 2006

Brandee hiccupped in startlement and whipped around to find Tahlvin standing on the landing above the living area. He looked to be dressed in a pair of sweatpants and not much else. She decided it was safest to concentrate on his face and not study the bared muscles of his chest or taut stomach too closely. Disconcerted by his sudden appearance, she blurted out, "You're as bad as Saena—sneaking up on people."

He chuckled as he descended the stairs and entered the living area. Each stride seemed as fluid and controlled as a wild cat as his feet glided silently over the wood floor.

"It's part of my job description," he said.

"Ah," she said even though she had no idea what it was he actually did. They'd known each other since before the boys were born but beyond the fact that he worked for the military, she didn't know what his job was.

"Did you need something?" she asked, crossing her arms over her chest as she became aware that only a thin cotton camisole covered her breasts.

For some reason she never felt comfortable around Tahlvin when they were alone. Maybe because when there were no other people to distract her, she was forced to acknowledge her body's animalistic response to him.

She still remembered the first time she met him. On the first day she and Jason had moved into their home back in Mission Bay, Tahlvin had stopped by to introduce himself. She'd answered the door and been momentarily unable to breath. It wasn't until he'd spoken, his deep velvet-edged voice sending a delicious shudder through her entire body, that she'd regained her senses enough to remember her manners.

"I heard you down here and wanted to make sure everything was all right," said Tahlvin.

"Damn elf ears," she said softly to herself but knew he'd be able to hear her anyway.

His full, sensual lips pulled into a wicked smirk.

Realizing that she was now paying too much attention to his face, she felt her cheeks burn and cursed silently hoping that the flickering firelight would hide her blush and that elf eyes weren't as sensitive as their ears.

She turned away from him, grabbed the fire poker and began stirring the smoldering coals back to life. Common sense told her that she should leave the fire alone and allow it to burn out—she didn't like to go to bed until the fire was at least banked—but she needed something to divert her attention…something to look at that wasn't made of corded and bulging muscle and that didn't study her through coolly appraising smoky eyes.

She swallowed hard and jabbed at a burning log. "I'm just worried about Jason. I'm sorry for being so emotional today."

Instead of the usual words of comfort or assurances that most people would have offered, Tahlvin said, "Are the two of you all right? I've noticed a…tension lately."

Anger sparked within her and she tossed the poker aside. In a caustic voice, she said, "I'm not sure how that's any of your business."

There was silence behind her. For a moment she thought he had slipped away as quietly as he had appeared, but then he replied, "You're right, of course. I'm sorry."

Turning toward him, she dropped her eyes and studied the weave of the carpet at his feet unable to look into his face—not wanting to know what she might see there. If he was disappointed or angry with her then… As soon as the thought entered her mind, her stomach dropped.

And as much as she worried he might be upset with her, what would she do if she saw compassion or understanding softening the sculpted planes of his alabaster face? "No, I'm sorry. I've been an insane and petty bitch lately. Jason can attest to that."

He stepped closer to her. The heat of his body bridged the gap between them. She could feel the weight of his gaze on her, compelling her to look up, but still she resisted afraid that she wouldn't be able to trust herself.

Of their own accord, her eyes traveled up his legs and came to rest on the tattoo etched into the taut expanse of stomach below his navel. Her fingers twitched as she studied the skin and followed it down to where it disappeared beneath the waistband of his sweatpants.

"Brandee," he said.

She jumped.

"Look at me, su shari." His deep-timbred voice held a note of warmth and concern.

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31 Responses to “A Christmas Eve Story 04”

  1. eva says:

    Aww, the first page is so sad. I love the picture of Brandee crying though. Although it's sad, it looks so soothing in a way. I bet Tahlvin will show up and slyly put his arm around her and be like "Hey beautiful, why are you crying?". And then, they are gonna fool around and Jason is going to walk in on 'em. :D. I am perverted and I have a distorted view on things haha. Ohh wow, speaking of the devil..and there he is looking all sexy. More sexy than I remember…all tattooed up. Ahhemm.. And it seems that someone more than myself is a little entranced by that tattoo. I wouldn't mind running my fingers..heh. WOW….WOW. My eyes are fallin' outta my head. I don't even know if I wanna go to the next page. But of course I must..OMG! My eyes are like, racing through the words so quickly that they skip a few words and I have to force them to go back. Tahlvin ran like a deer when he saw Jason. I can't say I blame him. Heh. Wow. In the last picture..it seems as if Tahlvin is looking at Brandee and he is looking at her. Maybe its just my imagination….running away with me. Or is it from? Whatever. Alls I knows is..Tahlvin and Brandee acted like nothing was goin' on. Little suckers. I have to say that I'm happy that nothing did happen..but I wanted it to sooo BAD. I mean realllly bad. I don't mean to be rude but…HOW DARE YOU SAY THIS IS THE END? HMM? Does it LOOK like I'm ready for this to be the end? NOOOOOO.But wow.And I love the lighting of everything. It makes everything look that much more sexual. Of course I did notice Tahlvin looked differently and you explained why. I love the way it looks. But I have a question..how did you layer all of the different skin tones that you like because I always wanted to add some stuff to a certain skintone because I love it, but I wanted it to have a few moles and stuff. Thanks. And if you had delayed this update for a wallpaper…again, I don't mean to be rude…but I would've killed you…or probably myself. In my imagination of course. I just couldn't take it. I'm so happy that you decided to endulge crazy people like me instead. :D MUCHISIMAS GRACIAS!

  2. eva says:

    OH, and what did Tahlvin say in his elvish language? Probably something seductive..mmhmm.. :D

  3. Kara says:

    Eva: So…you liked it? I'm confused. hehe Just kidding… I'm really glad you enjoyed it so much! I had a ton of fun writing and taking pictures for this chapter—tension, especially of the sexual variety, is the best. And it's not just you, Tahlvin and Brandee are looking at each other in the last picture (well, it's kind of hard to tell where exactly Brandee is looking since all you can see is the back of her head, but it's pointed in his general direction anyway). As for it being the end, well, I will revisit this family someday for an update. My neighborhood is all set up now for some rather interesting events. hehe

    And when Tahlvin calls Brandee "su shari" he is in essence saying "my heart". I'd say he's getting a little ahead of himself, but he's comfortable saying the words to her since he knows she doesn't understand them.

    Edited 12/30/06:
    Ack! I'm sorry, Eva! I was tired last night when I responded to your comment and forgot to answer your question about how I blend the skintones. Anyway, I'm horrible at explaining things so I went out and found a few tutorials for you. This should be a good place to start and then at the bottom of the post there are a number of links that lead you to other helpful tutorials. If you're interested in blending skintones like I do, then take a look at the tutorial on "How to make a sim's face using source pics." Even when working on the body of a skintone, the steps are very similar. As for adding moles, I just take my paintbrush (use a small, soft brush, size 3 or something), set the foreground color to be a few shades darker than the base skin and then (on a new layer) I just dot around a few moles wherever I want them to be.

  4. amalinaball says:

    That was…so…beautiful! And kinky! ;) But still so beautiful. I loved the way you set the scene between Tahlvin and Brandee, it was so tender and gentle. I feel bad for Jason, though, since I think I still cares about her. Oh well, it was a pleasure seeing Tahlvin from all those angles! I really like how you've made his new skin (his tattoos are divine, I've always liked them!), it's interesting how you used different features from different skins. I've been doing that lately.

    The kids are adorable, as always!

    Now, just one little thing: Where did you get Saena's clothes? The ones with the knee-length boots? They're pretty!

    Great story, it was a pleasure to read (and reread!) :D

  5. Alicia says:

    I'm blown away. O_O Exellent writing and pictures. At first, I was so entranced with your writing that I had forgotten there WERE pictures! A nice graphics card can go a long way, but it's the way the sets and characters are manipulated that make them so aw-inspiring. The epilogue was absolutely brilliant as well.. I wasn't expecting that, and I had wondered if Alec was going to show up again!

    I do, of course, LOVE what you did with Tahlvin's skin. I do that all the time: take parts of other skintones and mix them all together. Actually, I do that with pretty much everything…

  6. Kara says:

    Amalinaball: Thank you! I really appreciate the comments. :mrgreen: It's interesting to read how other people perceive the scene between Brandee and Tahlvin. I was a little worried that he might come off as a creep taking advantage of a vunerable woman even though that wasn't what I intended at all. Ah, the insecurities of a writer. ;) Anyway, I must admit to feeling bad for Jason too. In my gameplay, I had actually been avoiding the scene between Tahlvin and Brandee as I like Jason so much as well and it's sad knowing that he would be hurt by it. But, well, it's also fun to torture my characters. mwahahaha! :twisted:

    Saena's outfit is from EyeCandy and can be found on page 23 of the Adult Clothes section.

    Alicia: Aw, thank you so much! And I'm glad that you liked the epilogue as well. At first I wasn't going to include it, but then I changed my mind as I wanted to tie everything up a little more neatly.

    I'm like you, almost all my characters have skintones that have been mixed, or at least manipulated in some way. It's fun to do.

  7. amalinaball says:

    Thanks ever so for the link! :D

  8. Jenny says:

    Hi Kara, love it!….Hey where can I find Sam's pj's??? so cute…..and I am looking endlessly for that tasty skintone?????…

  9. Kara says:

    Jenny: You're welcome! :D You can get Sam's satin pajamas from All About Style (Themes > 1930s), but the wrong mesh is packaged with them so you'll have to get the correct one from MTS2. The Tasty skintones can be downloaded from InSIMenator.

  10. eva says:

    Haha, I would be confused too if I were you reading my comment. I just get so excited. But anyway, thanks for the links!

  11. eva says:

    And I forgot to tell you..I had no idea what you are talking about when you said.."Oh, well just add dots on the new layer with a size 3 paintbrush and make the foreground darker than the base skin…" I can assure you that if you had seen my face, you would have died laughing. :D I have never in my life used a photoimaging software so using your links, I decided to download the GIMP since I'm so very, very poor and don't have a job and I'm following the tutorials that vashti71 kindly posted. Hopefully, I will soon become accustomed to the software and make tons of stuff to my liking. Thanks for the jumpstart!

  12. Alicia says:

    Eva,
    Gimp is a very good free paint program… I'm sure you'll get used to it in no time! I used to use it for everything, and although it doesn't have all the features of a paid-for graphics program, it's probably the best one you can find(for free). There are plenty of Gimp tutorials on Modthesims2.com, so I'm sure you'll find it useful!

  13. Dektora says:

    Great way to end your story: somewhat closed and opened at the same time. I was waiting for a new chapter of your main story before, but now I don't mind if your next update is taking place in the worlds apart universe or in this alternate neighborhood.
    And boy, did my computer screen got steamy at the end of page 2 or was it just me? Thank you for that. I always though Jason was the sexiest of your guys, but wow! Seeing Tahlvin as a shirtless sensual predator can make a girl reconsider things ;)

  14. Kaylene says:

    Ok, this was a great ending to the story. I hope there will be more like this, because I'm addicted. Maybe and affair between Breandee and Tahlvin as a theme in another chapter.

  15. Decorgal says:

    Hot hot hot! This was a great ending to this chapter. I have to say the lighting in the evening shots were particularly gorgous. :) I love your screens- they are works of art.

  16. Kara says:

    Eva: hehe I sometimes forget that not everyone has experience with a graphics program. But I'm glad that you found one to use and hope you have fun doing the tutorials. A whole new experience with the Sims has opened up to you now. :)

    Dektora: Now if I ever need a break from writing the main Worlds Apart story, I can drop in on the alt. neighborhood and stir things up in there. :twisted: And, Tahlvin is glad that he turned your eye from Jason if only for a moment. He told me that maybe he should walk around shirtless more often if it means attracting new fans. I, of course, had no problem with that request. ;)

    Kaylene: Thank you! I'll be moving on from this story for a while to concentrate on my main storyline, but I'm definitely not finished with these characters.

    Decorgal: Thank you so much! It was a bit of a challenge to get the lighting balance (without it being either too dark or too light) but I was pleased with the results in the end. I have so much admiration for you machinima artists who have to light dynamic scenes, I have a hard enough time lighting static ones.

  17. Alimah Kali says:

    By the Gods… Tahlvin's tattoos… You're are killing me. In a good way, of course. Even though I knew it was wrong, my perverted little mind kept screaming "Ravage her, you wild beast of an elf! Nail her to your nights!" I fear that if Tahlvin gets any hotter than he does in this story, I'll end up like Brandee: wrapped with guilt at straying from my love of Hale. XD Of course, if my Adrian finds out, I'm screwed… >_

  18. does a name really matter says:

    Your art is so gorgous,it never seems to amaze me.Love the ink,kinda reminds me of someone i know…*wink*. well anyway, I was just stopping by to admire your beautiful work,keep it up!

  19. Miss Simmie says:

    This is a really great story. The pictures and sets are something that I could only hope to achieve someday! I have been following your "Worlds Apart" story also. Thanks for sharing this lovely and moving tale. ^_^

  20. Mao says:

    I'm so late, but this was awesome! Geeze, the tension–so thick! Tahlvin looks a LOT different… did you change something about him? Maybe it's the haircut.

    Your pictures are AMAZING! They don't even look like they're from the same game, wow. EA Games needs to do whatever you're doing, because they blow theirs away.

  21. Kara says:

    Alimah: hehe I better not let Hale read your comment…he may get jealous. ;)

    No Name: Thank you very much!

    Miss Simmie: Thank you! I'm really glad that you liked it. It really got my creative juices flowing. I'm all pumped to tackle the next chapter of "Worlds Apart".

    Mao: Yes, I did change a few things about Tahlvin. Before I started this story, I redid his skin (see page 6 of this post for details) and added my "Just Lips" to his face (he used to have Rensim winter lips in Black Ice…or something). I also added some slight shading under his eyes as I'm trying to make him look a little careworn. It's amazing what a few changes can do. I also think it's the hair though. And, I still haven't decided on what hairstyle to go with for the main story. heh

  22. VJ says:

    Awww, man! I was on the edge of my seat saying "Do it Brandee, do it"! I still love Jason, but Tahlvin has a look that you just can't say no to.

    Bravo to Brandee for her self-control! lol

  23. Sydonie says:

    I just discovered your site…I can't say I've got anything new to say, but god, your pictures(and downloads) are amazing.

  24. Verity says:

    Gee that was a sexy post *fans self*. I was really hoping they would kiss but oh well. I really loved your Christmas stories… they were so great and the pictures were amazing! Can't wait to see more stuff with these characters.

  25. alison says:

    cool!! were do u get ur downloads i ave loads i wanna use but dont know how 2 get them into da game!! >:( hheeeeeeeeeeeeeelp mmeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!! {please!! :)]} how do u do dat ting wit dare faves they look soooooooo real!!! :L :D :)

  26. Choco says:

    What tension. I loved it. The words were so engaging and sultry. Good job. I too was wondering what would have happened if Sam (or anyone else in the house for that matter) came in and saw them. That leaves the mind wondering. I can't wait to see more of this neighborhood in the future, as well as the main storyline.

    Happy New Year!

  27. Jen says:

    Kara, your pictures always blow me away! You always find just the right poses and expressions. And you do a marvelous job with the lighting. I have tried the lighting mod in the past, and I had a tough time with it. But you seem to have mastered it. I have a question for you — how do you place multiple objects on an endtable or nightstand without them being centered? I've tried it with boolprop snapobjectstogrid false, and that doesn't work. What am I missing?

  28. Alicia says:

    The wallpapers are gorgeous! I admit I was skeptical at first but I ended up changing my wallpaper…..

  29. Kara says:

    Alison: Go to my Credits page to see a list of most of the sites I get my objects from and I recommend checking out MTS2 Help page for tutorials on how to get your downloads to show up.

    Jen: Thank you! You should give the lighting mod another chance. I found the trick for it is to add more lighting than you think you'll need. I have lights sitting on end tables off stage in every shot.

    As for adding multiple objects to endtables: I use the one more slot mods made by ariffrazalin @ MTS2. They're available for endtables, coffee tables and regular tables/desks. These are soooo wonderful for adding clutter around the house or a centerpiece to your table setting.

    Alicia: I'm so glad that you like it! I think it's fun making wallpaper, especially of my characters.

  30. Jen says:

    Awesome! Thanks so much for the links, Kara!

  31. Gabe says:

    Please upload this house, or send it to me. Or simply take more pictures! Thank you!

 

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