2.2 A New Year

3 months earlier

Hawthorne watched the morning rays of sunlight slither their way into the room as she sat on the floor. She glanced to Chloe’s side of the room. Her roommate never came home.

At least someone got lucky last night, Hawthorne smirked to herself, feeling a twinge of jealousy towards Chloe. This was definitely not how she envisaged Dandelion’s overnight visit going. She let the elf sleep in her bed, since it wasn’t like Hawthorne herself was able to sleep.

Not that Dandelion seemed to be doing much sleeping himself either, as far as she could tell by his constant shuffling and lack of heavy breathing. But his eyes were shut. Clearly wasn’t in the mood for talking. Not that she could blame him. She had no idea what to say herself either.

The elf propped himself up in the bed. Probably her staring, Hawthorne thought, quickly looking away. “Did you sleep ok?” She asked.

He gave her a funny look. “No.”

Hawthorne nodded. Of course he didn’t. She joined him on the bed, but felt stuck for words. What was she supposed to say? Me either? Dandelion was very well aware of her sleeping patterns, of lack thereof, and she didn’t want to sound like she was mocking him. Sorry about grandma? That was hardly going to cut it.

She cleared her throat. “What are you going to do? Are you gonna see your dad?”

Dandelion shook his head. “I don’t… He… I don’t know him.” He was looking at her, but it didn’t really seem like he could see her at all.

“Don’t you want to know him?” Hawthorne replied, hoping she sounded non-confrontational.

“I… I don’t know.” He stood up, grabbing his hoodie from the floor. I think I’ll just go home. Trains should be running again, right?”

“I guess… You know you can stay as long as you want, right?” She tried again, but Dandelion seemed in a hurry to get dressed. “If you want to work things out with your dad and stuff. I’m sure Chloe won’t mind.”

He looked towards Chloe’s empty bed. “Where is your roommate?”

“Probably hooked up with some guy at the party.” Hawthorne shrugged. “She was pretty drunk, so my guess is she’ll be sleeping in. Hopefully she won’t be too hungover when she rocks up. Not that we have to stay here. We can always go grab a coffee in town or something-“

“I’ll go get that train.” Dandelion stopped her.

“Oh.” She tried to hide her disappointment.

“Do you want me to walk you to the station?” Hawthorne asked, scanning the room for clothes she could quickly throw on.

“I think I remember where it is.” He rejected her offer. She must have looked deflated, since his expression softened. “I’m sorry, Hawthorne. Thanks for offering. I just… I’d really rather be alone right now.”

Hawthorne’s heart sank. “It’s because I’m related to her, isn’t it?”

“No.” The elf replied sharply. “I meant what I said last night. None of this is your fault. Or Cordie’s fault. So please don’t blame yourself. We’re ok, ok?”

“Ok.” She said, her voice numb. But nothing seemed ok at all.

“I’ll see you later.” He told her, already headed for the door.

“Dandy, wait!” Hawthorne dashed after Dandelion, desperate to stop him. Dandelion turned back towards her. She couldn’t tell if his expression was puzzled or annoyed.

“You should take this.” She handed him her mother’s necklace. “In case you change your mind and do want to see your dad… you should have both of the keys.”

Dandelion hesitated for a moment, but his fingers did wrap around the key in the end. He gave her a small nod. Hawthorne hoped he would say something, but no such luck. He was out of the door before she knew it.

***

Simeon Silversweater was not having a good start to the new year. He let out a sigh of frustration, evaluating the state of the hall.

Shouldn’t have to be him to clean up after Morgyn’s charade, but of course it wound up being the case, as per usual. It wasn’t too strenuous, thanks to practical magic, but that did not make the matter any less tedious.

What was more, while Simeon himself did not participate in the ball, he heard enough about Morgyn’s personal blowout and rumours of a subsequent confrontation with Luella. Thankfully at least the latter happened outside, but that didn’t stop the guests from talking.

It seemed like a never-ending loop with those two.

In spite of the two other sages having ascended 41 years ago, Simeon somehow still found himself in a babysitter’s role. Something he had hoped would become obsolete after three decades of being a guardian to two elven children. It was a cruel twist of irony; one he did not foresee when he made the tough decision to never start a family of his own in order to become a sage.

And yet here he was, at 107 years old, having spent the best part of his life responsible for something akin to children he never intended to have in the first place. He felt tired. So tired.

While Simeon hoped to still have a couple more years in him, thanks to his grandmother’s elven blood, he was not sure how much more time he would have. It was certain that he could not continue to oversee Morgyn and Luella for much longer.

The thought of the other two sages almost inevitably blowing up the realm troubled him. It was easy to see how the two of them could easily throw away everything he’d worked for his entire life. But as the world welcomed yet another year, it was clear to Simeon he did not have yet another year of supervising in him. He yearned to retire. And that meant having to let go.

The choice of successor was not difficult. Darrel Charm had dedicated the last 15 years to his position as an adviser to the sages. Clearly he shared Simeon’s values and sense of duty. With his family’s lineage, Darrel indisputably had talent, and was more than proficient at the majority of practical magic spells.

But most importantly, Darrel always represented the people of Glimmerbrook. The Charms had a voice in the spellcaster community like no other family. Simeon had learned the hard way that Morgyn – and disappointingly, Luella as well – would never prioritise the future of the realm over petty personal squabbles.

But Darrel had been dutiful over the years, and always spoke on the behalf of the people. Naming Darrel the new practical magic sage meant the other two sages would not be able to ignore the voice of the community over their own selfish pursuits. It was the most prudent way ahead.

Of course, the current state of affairs was not favourable to Darrel being able to speaking on the people’s behalf, or any kind of harmony in the realm. Beyond the sages each choosing their successors as they saw fit, the archaic system in place demanded that all three sages were in unanimous agreement before the realm took a position on any official matters. As if that would ever happen with Morgyn and Luella once Simeon left.

The other two sages both had a track record of completely disregarding the unwritten rule in the past when it came to the dealings with vampires, or Morgyn’s insane Selvadorada expedition. But Simeon had no doubts that the minute he retired, they would both cite this to block and spite each other, indirectly preventing Darrel from achieving anything meaningful on the people’s behalf.

Which was why the system had to change. And it was today Simeon intended to secure that change with the last notion he hoped to pass as a sage.

A/N: Just to avoid any confusion about the timeline (since the BC timeline is always all over the place), this chapter is picking up where we left off in the season one finale, meaning the events of chapter 2.1 are 3 months away. The timeline will catch up to the season 2 opener eventually, but I’m sure it will be obvious when that happens.

21 thoughts on “2.2 A New Year

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  1. I was surprised to see that we’re picking off where we last ended in S1. Definitely wasn’t expecting to have Simeon’s pov. But it does say 3 months earlier. Ooh! I wonder what’s going on in the present.

    So we’ll actually get to see Hawthorne deal with the loss of her roomie. Eek. o: Random thought: I wonder how much uni time Hawthorne has left.

    Darrel as Simeon’s replacement and as the voice of the people? Wow. Was not expecting that. I can’t say I have high expectations for him based on S1 but okay. On the unwritten rule on dealing with vampires, I doubt all these years of Micah living among them made much of a dent to how he feels about vamps. Be interesting to see how they deal with the incoming vamp-spellcaster feud.

    What is this notion? No more unanimous vote? Majority vote? Democracy? One sage has ultimate power over the other? Do readers get to vote? Lol jk. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, there’s actually quite a bit that went down between here and the events of chapter 2.1! I figured I’d skip ahead for the season opener because awkward Dandy and Hawthorne and grumpy Simeon would not make a very exciting season premiere, lol.

      Yes, we will get to see how Chloe’s death affects Hawthorne. Hawthorne has only been at uni for one semester so far!

      The Charms are well respected in Glimmerbrook 🙂 But yes, I can imagine Simeon’s opinion on Darrel and the readers’ opinion on Darrel are not quite the same, haha.

      Hahaha it’s probably reader vote, yep! 😂 We’ll see what Simeon actually has in mind in the next one 🙂

      Like

  2. Simeon really thinks this has a chance after all the sages talked shit about Darrell potentially being a sage years earlier. 😛 Neither of them get a break. I’d kind of like to throw Darrell into all the chaos though. Can’t wait to catch up to the season premiere! Feels like news travels slowly in this world.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Luckily for Simeon, who he names as his successor is none of the other sages’ business. Although it might well be that he chose Darrel precisely because neither Luella nor Morgyn are particularly keen on him. 😉

      I don’t really like ignoring logistics, so I reasoned it would take Alba quite a bit of time to get from Britechester to Mount Komorebi to report to Verena – I don’t quite see her rocking up at an airport, or even owning a passport. I’m sure there are quite a few constraints when it comes to transport options as a vampire 🙂 Similarly, Delphine’s subsequent trip to Del Sol Valley wouldn’t have been instant either. The only one who was able to travel fast was Damien, thanks to his aforementioned private jet 🙂 So three months for all this vampiric travel seemed reasonable in my head 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Easy assumption to make given that TS4 sims normally can hop from world to world like it’s nothing – but personally I’ve never liked that, so it’s not a thing in the BC universe 🙂 So the ability to teleport is reserved for spellcasters, with additional caveats of not every spellcaster knowing how to do so. There will actually be more on this in the future 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  3. I wonder when it dawns on Hawthorne that she has no reason to be jealous of Chloe 🤨
    In many ways, Hawthorne is a pretty ordinary teenager and it seems like she dreams of using boys for something other than sucking blood. Maybe I’m wrong.
    Poor Dandy. Hawthorne wants to comfort him but she probably does not know the recipe for pancakes 😢

    It is consistently a sad chapter.
    Simeon also seems pretty depressed. He has wasted his life on elven children he has never wished for and sees chaos in the future when his life is over. Lulu and Morgyn only seemed preoccupied with the injustices that have befallen them in life. What a pitiful valley 😩

    Simeon sees Darrel as his possible successor?
    Exciting what revolution he has under construction?
    Here we need miracles 🧐

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sure she will find out at some point when Chloe never makes it back. For sure, for all her bloodthirst Hawthorne is not that unique in terms of what people her age might enjoy. Not sure if anyone can console Dandy right now, he has a lot on his mind.

      Consistently sad already? Oh dear 😅 I think Simeon would benefit from an extended holiday 😀 Alas, that’s not something that’s possible for the sages. Yes, Simeon’s life never was about Simeon. The other two sages, on the other hand, are all about themselves.

      Simeon did suggest Darrel for a sage role way back, when Morgyn died. Looks like he hasn’t changed his mind on that since, on the contrary.

      Miracles… well, it is a magic realm, but I wouldn’t get my hopes up lol.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Simeon be looking like Father Winter here 😆 Poor guy, he’s been suffering in silence in the background this whole time! Darrel has really calmed down since his young adult days, hasn’t he? I somehow don’t think making him a sage is a good idea… I just don’t think he can survive between the strong personalities of Luella and Morgyn. But who knows, he might just surprise me… Or he’ll leave the realm in a body bag.

    Of course, the person I feel most sorry for is Chloe. She didn’t deserve that end 😢

    And Dandy ❤ I hope the truth bombs his dad dropped doesn’t change him, I want him to stay happy! Knowing the story though, that does seem a little unlikely haha. I guess we’ll just have to see.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Simeon may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but his life is kind of tragic in its own way too, it was always about someone else and now he’s almost at the end without having much to look back on and smile. But while he’s sacrificed a lot for his duties, that doesn’t necessarily mean he always makes good decisions. We’ll see how Darrel works out as his successor!

      I know, poor Chloe!

      Um… yes, we shall see 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh yes, I almost forgot that Candyfloss Chloe became vamp food. So lucky. After all that drama, Hawthorne really thought she’d get some action with Dandelion? Could that nightie be any shorter? So now Dandelion has both keys. Ooh dear, why do I have a bad feeling about this? Oh, because it’s BC. 😆

    Random praise alert: it’s not lost on me that Dandelion is wearing 3 different outfits in this short scene and I’m loving that detail.

    I know you said that picking up straight after New Year’s as your season 2 opener would be boring, but Simeon is another level of boring, isn’t he? I mean this as a compliment, as everything about the way you style him, pose him and construct his thoughts is ‘practical’, through and through. Moping around the hall, looking at all the stinky food.

    So he wants to pass the reigns to Darrel Charm? Well, he is wearing a cardigan and has a boring haircut, so based on those observations, I’d say he was dull enough for the role, yes.

    Ooh a final notion to pass? Majority verdict? People’s vote? Reader’s vote? Duel to death? Probably people’s vote, if Darrel is being considered as such a man of the people. A way for Simeon to ensure that it looks diplomatic but is actually skewed in favour. Although that’d be open to meddling by the other sages/everyone. Hm.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Poor Chloe, she really got the short end of the stick. Perhaps Hawthorne was hoping to release the tension the night produced, lol. Dandelion has both keys now, yes! Whether that’s good, bad or neutral… time will tell, I suppose.

      Aww, thank you! It drives me crazy that none of the blacks in any top quite match, so his hoodie and t-shirt are slightly different shades depending on the outfit, but this was the best I managed!

      Precisely, Simeon could not carry the season opener I don’t think, lol. Guy needs to let loose a little. Maybe in his retirement. Though I somehow doubt it 😀

      Dutiful Darrel Charm is the perfect successor in Simeon’s eyes! The dull grey cardigan probably helps, yes 😛

      I mean… this is still Simeon we’re talking about, so I’ll leave it to you to decide how intense of a revolution he might be planning. Or you can just wait till the next chapter 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Ooooh we’re going back in the past! Or did we start in the future? 😁

    *facepalm* yes, Hawthorne, the man just went through huge emotional revelation trauma, so of course what he should be thinking about is about “getting lucky” with you. 😑 Dandelion sleeping on Hawthorne’s bed while she just sits on the floor next to him in a nightie is so strange. I don’t think I’d be able to sleep knowing my host was not only awake but sitting right next to me all night, waiting for me to wake up. She looks so young in the picture where she’s looking at him on the bed. Her usual expressions make her older and way more confident – but in moments like this, we’re reminded that she really still is very much a child.

    I wonder where Dandy is going. Back to the Glades, to sort his mind out? Maybe confide in Cordelia? Poor guy has had his whole world turn upside-down. I just hope he doesn’t get grabbed by Alba along the way. Would she have gone off back to Verena after draining poor Chloe, gone to Glimmerbrook herself, or would she still be skulking around somewhere, hiding from the sun?

    Oooh, Simeon really has grown old. I want to say the beard and old age look good on him, but he just looks tired and bitter. Probably because he’s feeling tired and bitter. Like a crusty raisin. I do feel bad for him, though. He did get saddled with two children despite not wanting any and then was constantly caught in between Morgyn and Luella. I have no confidence that Darrel will get anything more done than Simeon, though. He’s right. If Darrel gets one of the sages to agree with him on something, the other one will most likely refuse just to spite the other. What kind of notion could he possibly force through that would give Darrel a better chance? That it’s enough if two agree? That they have to do it if there’s a high enough vote from the people? That he takes Morgyn and Luella down with him in a crazy magic sweep when he retires? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see 😆

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Time is relative, right? 😁

      Oh I know, I doubt Dandy was able to sleep much. Though he was probably too preoccupied with what happened either way, even if Hawthorne wasn’t sat on the floor not sleeping. Of course, Dandelion is aware that Hawthorne doesn’t need to sleep, so pretending she’s asleep for his benefit when he knows that’s not something she’s capable of would be even weirder, I suppose. For sure, Hawthorne talks the talk but she’s definitely still so very young and doesn’t really know what to do with any of this any more than Dandelion does.

      Good question. Both of those seem like something he might want to do, yes. Haha I see you’re paranoid about the vamps already 😅 We do know that Micah can’t go out in sunlight at all and needs to be somewhere completely windowless, so let’s hope that means Dandy’s walk to the station will be Alba-free. Unless he’s walking through a tunnel, I guess 😬

      Yep, the dude is 107 years old now. (So is Lulu, I guess, but she has an advantage 😄). Tired and bitter sounds about right. Yep, he went from caring for elven children who stayed children exponentially longer than human children would to somehow trying to maintain relative peace in the realm after Luella and Morgyn’s fallout. Being a sage is probably not quite what he had hoped for, poor dude. Ooh, interesting guesses! You’ll find out sooner rather than later 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  7. FINALLY, I AM BACK. Work has been bonkers so I’m just now getting a chance to do my reading. Damn it, who gave Dandy permission to get so cute? I appreciate Hawthorne being mature enough to put her feelings aside to support Dandy. I know she is hurt, but I’m glad she didn’t act on it. Dandy has spent his whole life looking out for everyone else’s emotions, it’s time someone did the same for him.

    I know I’ve been Team Morgyn :: glances at t-shirt balled up in the corner:: but Simeon is not wrong. Despite Luella and Morgyn’s age, they really are like children. I know Simeon hasn’t been perfect but I really felt for him this chapter. Like he is old! He deserves a break! Morgyn and Faba need to grow up and think about someone besides themselves!

    You even have me agreeing that Darryl Charm is a good choice!

    WHAT IS HAPPENING?

    Now, what exactly is Simeon planning? I kind of want him to stick to these two before he croaks.

    (oh no, who am I now?)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welcome back! 🙂 Dandy’s life may be falling apart, but at least he looks good, lol. This is true, Dandy was not the only one to get big bombshell news last night, Hawthorne has a lot to reconcile too, but she’s prioritising him. As you say, not many others have necessarily given Dandy the same, well done Hawthorne.

      Simeon’s far from perfect for sure, but he does try to prioritise the realm when making his decisions. Morgyn and Faba, on the other hand, tend to mainly think about themselves and each other, with the realm a distant afterthought. No wonder Simeon is concerned about the realm’s sustainability.

      Ooh, Darrel has some support? Nice! He’s definitely shown a lot of dedication in his adviser to the sages role in the last decade, and his family is well respected, so he does seem like a good bet – throwing someone more controversial to the mix of sages now would be the last thing the realm needs, haha.

      Hahaha, yes, go cheer for Simeon! He needs some people in his corner 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I can’t believe I’m supporting Darrel but yes, you’ve driven me to this point! The heart wants what it wants!

        I’m very concerned about the “haha” at the end of that sentence about throwing the realm into chaos. Morgyn won’t do anything too crazy right?

        Right?!?!?!?!?!

        oh no.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. 😂 Stranger things have happened!

          Don’t be concerned, I’m sure everything will be fiiine. Morgyn would never make reckless choices without considering the impact on the realm, right? 😆

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Ok, so, based on what I understand of these characters, Hawthorne definitely would have poked Dandy’s foot if he had fallen asleep.

    Dandy’s going to cause an electric-scooter pile-up if he keeps brooding around campus like that. Though I don’t know if I’ve said it, I appreciate him unambiguously turning her advances down every time: I’m saying this as someone whose OTP has an age gap of 102 years, but I’ve had to put stories down because the pairing between a young woman and an older man who knew her as a minor is super, super creepy, and good on Dandelion for realizing that. This is how it should go down in real life. He’s a p. good role model for elves.

    That being said, he is no longer my favorite. I am pushing him out of the way and it is all about Simeon, Simeon, Simeon now. Haruka (? is that the name?) can come too. Old? Tired? Obsessed with practicality? Been done with Lulu & Morgyn’s shit? Damn. This is a man who has tenure and acts like it. Are there great So-Done Professor Grandpa moments with this guy hidden in the archives?

    I’m concerned about Darryl—he does seem like the natural choice right now, but the lack of public information about the Charm family besides “they’re an old family with a good reputation” just screams SECRETS SECRETS SECRETS to me. And it’ll be easy for him to go behind the other two sages’ backs with them squabbling. Awful as Morgyn is, they’re too self-obsessed to play politics like Darryl is capable of doing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, she well may have!

      This sort of makes me want electric scooters in the sims. I think Dandelion is primarily creeped out by the fact he used to have a crush on Hawthorne’s mum before Hawthorne was even in the picture. Though who’s to say he would have even been romantically interested in Hawthorne if it wasn’t for that and the age thing. That said I can’t really think of Dandelion as an “older man” since in human years he’d be 20. Poor dude needs more elfy friends since he’ll very likely outlive any humans he currently knows by centuries – providing he doesn’t end up being food for Verena’s crew and so on. But I’m getting way off topic and this subject is a total downer, so moving on!

      Ooh, love for Simeon, yay! He rarely gets any, so this makes me happy. Yep, I’d be tired and fed up if I were him too.

      I’m sure the Charms are just a nice reputable family. Maybe we will learn more about them eventually.

      Liked by 1 person

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