The Straight Path


“Somehow, doing dishes never feels like a chore after a happy event.”

Well, Doug thought as he was clearing up dishes after the wedding, my sister always has known what she wanted.

She’d wasted no time at all asking Nathanael to be her boyfriend, and next thing everybody knew, she’d proposed to him, and he moved in.


“This souped-up computer is awesome!”

Now it’s their wedding day.

“What did you wear at your wedding, Mom?” Tam asked Salix.

“Oh, just everyday. Your dad wore a tux, with a little bow-tie, the whole nine yards. He was so cute.”

“I think I’ll wear everyday, too. I like this pink outfit with my pink sneakers. Nathanael’s wearing everyday, also.”


“We’re caszh.”

Before the guests arrived, Tam just stood in the garden and smiled and smiled. She doesn’t know it, but it was her way-great grandfather, Timothy Milton, who first tended this garden that his wife Cedar planted. He planted the lemon tree, too.

Nathanael reminds me so much of Timothy: both Asian, both loners, both true Romantics who can’t help but smile when they’re with the woman they love.

On the inside–and maybe on the outside, too–I feel exactly the way Tamarind looks: so very happy to have this Sim join the family.


“I just love him.”

He’s pretty happy about it, too. Turns out, that Nathanael is all about wellness. As soon as he picked up his first wellness point, he’s been continually whimming to do something wellness-related: practice yoga, give a massage, gain a wellness point. I guess he’s as much a hippie as he looks! Yeah, I love this gardening New Age loner.


“Maybe if I hurry, I can sneak in a quick session on the gaming rig before the wedding!”

And Sugar. This is what she was doing when I checked in on her before the wedding started. Oh, Sugar! Life is as good as you feel it to be. Now I know why you chose to extend yours.

Sugar Maple

What’s the word for a happiness that runs deeper than bliss?

Is joy catching?

Tamarind took one look at the sugar-free coconut carob cake that Sugar chose to bake for their wedding and swooned with happiness.

“It’s so perfect!” she chuckled.


Sugar made lobster thermidor, too, so I guess she figured the healthy cake would off-set the richness of the main course.

Everybody came to the wedding. Salix tended bar–in her spare time, she’s become a skilled mixologist, and she kept the drinks flowing.


Look! There’s gorgeous Cassie sitting on the bar stool. Looks like she’s getting some attention, too.

When they met at the wedding arch, Tam’s look said it all. In that face, for me, are all the bride heiresses all down the family line: Salix, Aspen, Acacia, Cedar. That secret grin. That knowing, sideways gaze. That resoluteness and happiness combined.

It is truly something when a woman embraces her destiny and chooses a partner to share it.


“Let’s do this thing.”

They had a moment alone before the guests made it over from the bar.

Such a sure path, the love of these two, without a moment’s hesitation from either.

“I was just waiting for you to grow up,” Tam whispered.


“Remember that day at the park when we first met? We were just kids!”

onezero, though she didn’t yet like or trust Nathanael, trusts Tam. onez knows that her sister made a promise to look after her and provide her with a home always. And just the night before, Tam had assured her that this marriage wouldn’t change that. Nathanael was joining the family–and nobody was leaving it. onezero could feel the truth of her sister’s words.


“I understand the meaning of one and two.”

Nathanael felt so bashful–everybody was watching him, and he knew that he was broadcasting his feelings with every gesture, every grin.


“I got something for you.”

He gave her a ring–I’m fairly certain this is the first time any Bough heiress has received or worn a wedding ring! All the other brides, except for Madrona, kept their fingers bare.

It was made from blue cut glass. Nathanael didn’t have the money to by her a diamond or gems, but he knows that what she loves is fine art. He drew the design himself and took it to a jeweler. He could tell from Tam’s expression that she loved it.


“I designed it myself. It’s a yin-yang symbol–for us.”

At the bar, Salix was remembering all the happy days they’d shared as a family and dreaming that she might be around long enough to meet her grandkids, just like her own grandma, Linda, had stayed around for her childhood.


“How many hugs have we shared through the years?”

Nathanael’s mom, who came for the ceremony, burst out into the birthday song as Tamarind cut the sugar-free wedding cake. Her exuberance expressed everyone’s feelings: this was a wedding to remember!


“I guess it must be customary to sing at weddings.”

onezero, too, stood up and joined in the song. Amazing, how that full feeling in your heart can flow out with the notes!


Everybody was feeling happy.

Nathanael waited out by the arch. He really didn’t want to head into the kitchen where everybody was gathered. When Tam brought out the cake for them to share, they both giggled.

“Think we can ditch the rest of the party?” Tam asked.

“Heck, yeah!”


“No one will notice if we disappear for a while!”

Sugar’s been seeking out moments where she can pause and notice her gratitude. It’s like the air she breathes now, this incredible gratitude for her digital life.

It doesn’t take long–just a moment, to feel those flashes of energy that make one’s pulse, to remember with each, “I’m here. This is my life.” And to remember, thank you.


When the cook feels grateful, the food is amazing! Sugar’s lobster thermidor was impeccable.

So many young single guys were there–the bald guy who lives across the street; Jebediah, former mailman; one of the other kids, now grown up. onezero played them at cards, but none could match her hand.

It’s going to take someone special for onezero to ever find someone she’ll trust with her heart.

But onezero is complete in herself. Love, she knows, isn’t dependent on having a partner or a lover. Love is what we are.


They like her fine, until she starts talking. Her ideas can be a little startling to the average Sim.

Doug found a spot to have a quiet nap, out on the benches looking over the canyon. He felt glad to know that his sister’s found somebody, and he’s always like Nathanael, who was one of his first friends. Like onezero, Doug’s not in any hurry to get married himself–or even to start up anything romantic. He’s even started thinking he might not move into the mansion across the street, after all. He likes living here at Cradle Rock with his family. He’s part of something. And it feels like home.


Such a cozy feeling–to sneak off during a wedding reception for a stolen nap!

After the guests left, Salix and Sugar, who’d been busy bar-tending and cooking all through the wedding party, had a chance to catch up with each other over a meal.

“It’s a big moment, sis,” Salix said.

“You’re telling me!”

“Think there will be nooboos soon?” she asked.

Sugar giggled. “Let’s hope so!”


Wasn’t it just yesterday that you were the bride, Salix?