Hey guys, thank you so much for all of the comments and helpful suggestions. It makes me feel really good to know so many of you enjoyed and were inspired by the Shanleys. I’ve been pondering what to do with them for the past few days, and I’ve finally come to a decision. Your feedback helped a LOT. For awhile I seriously considered starting a new Legacy with Zuzu Shanley, but I think what I’m going to do is just say goodbye to the Shanleys for good. I’ll definitely miss them, and they’ll always be one of my favorite families, but I’m ready to move on. To be honest, I hadn’t played them on a regular basis since 10th gen. I kept trying to revive them and renew my interest in them, but I wasn’t having much success, so maybe this was for the best.
Well, after banging my head against the wall repeatedly trying to figure out why two of my neighborhoods had ceased to appear in my neighborhood chooser menu (as I ranted about in this comment), I finally figured out the problem. I had thought it was an Open For Business problem, but I was wrong. This was completely and utterly my own fault (although I can point the finger at OFB for making me muck with things in the first place, grumble grumble).
Ruby: Heya, folks. I’m Ruby Shanley again, and this is my cousin Ginger –
Ginger: Hi there.
Ruby: And we’re here to tell you what happened after we escaped the shackles of Sim State University.
Ginger: Wait — we escaped the shackles of Sim State? Are you sure about that?
Ruby: Well, maybe that’s not the best way to phrase it…Anyway! We left Sim State and returned home to Niadon, which had been completely rebuilt, yet again. Our moms weren’t home to greet us, but my dad was there. He’s always there.
Ginger: Yeah, and he wasn’t very happy to see me.
Ruby: What did he say to you again?
Ginger: Something to the effect of, “Oh, YOU moved back in, too? I thought Ruby was going to be the Legacy heir!” Only he said it in an angry zombie voice.
Ruby: Hi folks, I’m Ruby Shanley. This is what I looked like my first day at Sim State University. Behind me is my cousin Ginger Shanley, who hadn’t turned into a young adult just yet.
Ginger: Wait, wait, WAIT…you can’t start out just like that. It’s been too long. You have to refresh their memories a little.
As Ruby Shanley became a teenager, her relationship with her ill-fated father improved somewhat. Though she was nicer and more caring than Juan had ever been (or ever would be), she very active – almost hyper – and highly interested in sports, as he himself had been before his botched resurrection, and he was proud that they shared those characteristics.
“ROO-BEE! ROO-BEE! ROO-BEE!”
Ruby loved her father and was glad to have him back, but she had to admit it was a little bit strange living with a zombie. She still hadn’t gotten used to it.
With the family safely ensconced in their new, ultra-secluded home (the address of which was made known only to the schoolbus driver, the grocery delivery guy, the mailman, the paperboy, the gardener, a few chaffeurs and a dozen assorted family friends), Mia Shanley could get back to doing what she did best: foiling the plots of SimNation’s most detestable villains.
Upon realizing that she wasn’t getting any younger, and that there would always be bad guys around, Mia decided to take on a sidekick to whom she could pass on her super-secrets. She put the following ad in the Sunday paper:
“Grammanator seeks capable and fearless cohort to assist in the fighting of crime. Apply at my super-secret hideout – IF you can find it…”
Within days, Mia had found a suitable sidekick: a young man by the name of Amadeo. Besides being frightfully handsome, Amadeo was fit as a fiddle, well-versed in the ways of villains (“I’ve read all of Marcel Shanley’s crime novels,” he said with pride), and properly worshipful.
“You’re an angel in bulletproof, waterproof, flameproof armor! You should be called…‘The Captivator’!”
Mia was amused by Amadeo’s adulation but didn’t let it go to her head.
“Don’t worry, you’re hired!” she told the youth. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a birthday party to attend.”
Mia Shanley stood over the slumbering form of her little granddaughter Ruby and let out a sigh. She knew she should be zooming through the skies, seeking out injustice wherever it festered in SimNation, but how could she leave Ruby’s side? The infant was so fragile, so helpless. And there were bad guys out there, seriously messed-up dudes, just waiting for an opportunity to take Mia down, to strike her where it hurt the most. She had to protect her most valuable asset.
Feeling restless, Mia wandered over to the windows and took up her sponge.
“I might as well get some cleaning done while I’m here. Great scott, look at all of these fingerprints!”
After the wedding in which Mr. Juan Walton became Mr. Juan Shanley, life at Niadon went on as usual. Mia flew into the sky every morning to fight crime, Juan continued his childish pranks and his job as a security guard while Delaney worked odd hours painting murals, and Sierra successfully exorcised a young man who had been possessed by the spirit of Darth Vader.
Only Marcel was struggling in his chosen occupation. Having reached the pinnacle of the natural scientist career many years before, he figured he would have no problem scaling the heights (or should I say lows) of the criminal underworld. Unfortunately a little mess-up during a routine smuggling operation got him nearly arrested, and word came down from head honcho Mr. Valentine that his marauding days were over.
“Ugh…I KNEW I shouldn’t have asked that cop for directions!”