“I can’t believe you chose to have the birthday party at your father’s house,” Keiko greeted Olivia as soon as she walked in.
“Thanks for coming, mom,” Oliva sighed. “It’s just that it is a bit bigger here, and there’s two bathrooms for guests, nothing else. I’m sorry if it’s awkward for you.”
“Oh I don’t mind being here at all,“ Keiko tilted her head back with an exaggerated back. “Although, if your aunt didn’t live in a shoebox, this would not have been an issue.”
Booker overheard the last sentence: “Well, if you didn’t take a big chunk of my family’s money, that wouldn’t have been the case…”
“I worked my plum off to get the money I have,” Keiko hissed at her ex-husband.
“Err, I’m gonna go check on the cake,” Olivia excused herself.
Luckily, the tension between booker and Keiko didn’t overcome the whole party, in fact, there was still lots of love in the room.
“My mom and dad are so embarrassing,” Newton remarked.
“Oh come on, I think it’s awesome,” Olivia beamed. “I mean, they could be my mom and dad…”
“Sorry, I wasn’t thinking,” Newton looked away awkwardly. “Oh, Diane’s here. She’s my girlfriend. My girlfriend!”
“Cowboy hats are all the rage now, aren’t they?” Diane looked at Alice’s ensemble.
“You look amazing Diane!” Newton sat down beside her enthusiastically.
“I know,” Diane said smugly.
“Must be the cowboy hat,” Alice smirked.
Chell sat outside with her little brother.
“How are you holding up, Booker?” she smiled gently.
“Oh, I’m great,” Booker answered. “I love this house, I love my job… you know. It’s all great.”
He stared at his drink for a moment. “Just great.”
Chell wished there was something she could do to help her brother, but she knew what he needed was time. And less obnoxious ex-wives in the house.
“I think the décor here is just tasteless,” Keiko went on.
Olivia turned around quickly: “Oh hi Malakai! How is it going?”
“Hey there, birthday girl,” he poked her teasingly. “Ready to join the young adult elite?”
“Pfft, like you are elite,” Liv laughed. “But I’ve never been more ready!”
First batch of cakes! Olivia aged up, gaining the Bro trait. (I wasn’t really sure what to go for, and I figured it would be nice for Ethan to have a fellow bro in the house).
Newton followed suite shortly.
Newton’s parents gathered around him.
“So proud of you my baby,” Chell hugged her son.
“He’s no baby anymore, sweetheart,” Knox smiled.
Keiko looked her daughter up and down; “I think you’ve gained weight, Olivia. You better hit up that gym your father made soon…”
Liv rushed out of the room and shut the door behind her, mumbling to herself.
“You trying to seduce me?” She realised she was in her dad’s bedroom with Malakai.
“Haha, very funny,” she replied.
“I figured a little joke could help your mood,” Malakai smiled sheepishly. “Sorry about your parents.”
“Well, they do have a talent for bringing out the worst out of each other. I wouldn’t expect any different from them…” Liv shrugged.
“Still, this is supposed to be your day,” Malakai said. “And for the record, I think the weight you’ve gained is in all the right places, if you know what I mean.
“You know Malakai, I used to think I had a crush on you, when I was little,” she smiled at her friend.
“No way,” he laughed. “I totally had a kid crush on you! Why do you think I peed myself when I met you?”
“It all comes together, huh?”
“Totally,” he chuckled. “So… how do you feel about me now?”
“I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have brought it up,” Liv looked down. “You’re my friend, I don’t really feel about you that way.”
“No, that’s cool,” Malakai said. “It’s the same for me. I mean, you’re hot, sure, but we’ve been friends forever. It’s just not really there.”
Olivia sighed with relief. “You know, it’s probably me. I’m not even sure if I can feel that way about any guy. Or even… have you ever had woohoo, Malakai?”
“Nope, though not for the lack of trying,” he smirked.
“So you’d have woohoo with any girl?” Liv raised an eyebrow.
“Is it gonna make me sound desperate if I say yes?”
“Yes,” she laughed. “But I wonder… would you be open to a little experiment?”
“Well, that was…” Malakai paused.
“Awkward?” Olivia filled in.
“Well… yeah. But still, it was woohoo,” he grinned.
“I guess,” Liv replied. “It was a stupid idea. I thought that maybe… never mind. We’re better off as friends, aren’t we?”
“Yeah, I think so,” Malakai nodded.
“I’m sorry I almost made things really complicated between us with that idea,” Liv said.
“Are you kidding? I had woohoo!” Malakai beamed.
Liv returned back to the living room just in time to see Ethan blow out the candles on his cake.
The way he and Yenn looked at each other, even with the age difference between them. That’s what Olivia wanted.
As the party guests slowly started leaving, Liv found herself alone in the room with Diane, of all people. Still, they were friends, so she figured she could confide in her about her experience with Malakai.
“Well of course it didn’t do much for you, it was Malakai,” Diane exclaimed. “I bet he had no idea what he was doing. I’ve heard he’s not even that great of a kisser, let alone…”
“No, I don’t think that’s it,” Liv frowned. “It’s just because I have no feelings for him.”
“That’s plum,” Diane disagreed. “Feelings have nothing to do with it! It’s all about skills! I’ll prove it to you!”
And before Liv could ask how, Diane kissed her.
It was the best feeling in the world. Liv was reluctant to let go as Diane slowly drew back.
“Woah…” Liv was speechless.
Diane smirked; “See? Skills! It has nothing to do with feelings.”
Up on the terrace, Yenn and Ethan were watching the sunrise in the hot tub. Although Ethan was mainly watching Yenn. She was still so young, and beautiful.
“So,” he smiled sadly, “how do you feel about the wrinkly old man prospect now? Are you sure you don’t want to replace me for a younger model?”
“Don’t be ridiculous,” Yenn moved closer to him. “This model is a classic. Never goes out of fashion.”
Being an elder is not so bad, Ethan thought.