Life is funny, I realized as I stood in my bedroom, watching Shirley get ready for work. When Huy had wanted to move in together, I had resisted and postponed until I absolutely couldn’t do so any longer. I had resented giving up my independence. And I had thought that that was just my nature, to resist change. Looking at Shirley, I knew that wasn’t the truth.
I moved across the room and wrapped my arms around her, meeting her eyes in the mirror. “I want you to move in.”
Her beautiful eyes widened and a smile took over her face. “Really?”
I smiled, hugging her tight. “Really. You spend most every night here already. It’s obvious that you adore Loralee. This should be your home.”
She turned and wrapped her arms around me. “Yes, of course, I’ll move in!”
I pressed my face into her neck, breathing in her familiar scent of honey and almonds as emotion swelled in my chest. “I love you, Shirley. I can’t believe how lucky I am to have found you again.”
Her lips found mine before we parted with matching grins. “I love you, too. You make me so happy.”
After giving me a squeeze, she went back to getting ready and I took a seat on the couch, veritably glowing I was so happy.
“I wish…” Shirley started.
She sighed. “I wish I could share this with Hadley. She’s so set against you.”
I pursed my lips, thinking. “Well, we haven’t really given her a reason to accept us. I haven’t even met her; she has no reason to think things are different now.”
“We’ve been so busy, and things were so complicated before. And – “
“I understand. You don’t have to sell me on it.” I laughed softly. “But I think it’s safe to say that we aren’t breaking up. We’re not going to jinx anything or tell anyone too soon or anything like that. We should have Hadley and Houston over for dinner. It’s time this house actually did some entertaining.”
Shirley smiled. “That’s a great idea. I’ll call Hads and tell her she and Houston have to come on Sunday. On pain of death!”
“Can you believe this place?” I asked Houston as we walked up to the front door.
“I think it’s kind of nice.”
“It’s enormous. Why does she need a house this gigantic? Shirley never exactly described her as the type to want a whole bunch of kids. This place must have five bedrooms at least. It’s ridiculous.”
Houston rubbed a hand over my back. “It’s not the house that you hate, darling.”
I harrumphed and rang the doorbell. I did think the house was grossly over-sized, but Houston was right that it wasn’t what was really bothering me. I did not want to nice with this Camille woman. She was going to break my sister’s heart, I just knew it.
Is it really Camille you’re worried about cheating?
I silenced the voice in my head as Camille approached the door. She looked exactly as I had pictured: frigid and manipulative.
Camille smiled as she opened the door. “Welcome to my home. Please, come in.”
Houston and I stepped inside and I got a better look at the interior. It seemed just as cold and empty as the woman standing in front of me.
Houston was far more polite than me. He extended his hand to Camille. “Hello, I’m Houston Yuen. And my wife, Hadley.”
After they shook, I reluctantly shook Camille’s hand. She smiled at me. “And I’m Camille, though I’m sure you both know that.”
Shirley came around from what seemed to be the kitchen. “Hads! I’m so glad you could come.” She wrapped her arms around me. “I’ve missed you.”
I held onto my sister and suddenly felt like crying. I’d missed her so much, even though it hadn’t been all that long since we’d stopped speaking to each other. There were so many things I needed to talk to her about. “When have I ever been able to tell you no?”
Shirley guided us to sit down at the table, where we helped ourselves to dinner. “Where are the kids?”
“They’re with my parents,” Houston said.
“You could’ve brought them.” Camille laughed softly. “I’m sure Joshua would’ve had a time with the piano upstairs. My mother had one when I was little and I just loved to bang away on the keys.”
She just had to mention that she had a piano. It was probably one of those grand ones that took up half a room. “It didn’t seem right to bring them. Especially with Nora still being so young.”
Shirley and Camille shared a look. Camille cleared her throat. “Hadley, may I be frank? I made an enormous mistake when I cheated on Shirley. An even worse one, if that is possible, in marrying Huy. He wasn’t the man I thought him to be and I paid the price. But I can’t regret my marriage because it led me back to Shirley and it made me realize what I really valued. I love your sister very much. We’ve taken great care to take things slowly this time, and we both believe that we’re where we should be as individuals in order to take the next step in our relationship. We hope that you will give us your blessing in moving in together. I would never want to come between two sisters; I hope very much that you and I can become friends.”
I sat in silence for a minute, processing Camille’s little speech. She didn’t sound quite as cold and unfeeling as I had judged her to be. In fact, she sounded as if she truly cared about Shirley. Perhaps she really had changed. I wasn’t sure of that, but perhaps. I took a sip of my water to clear my throat. “This is a lovely home, Camille. Shirley will be lucky to live in it with you and your daughter.” Both Camille and Shirley beamed.
A/N: I wanted at least one more screen shot of talking during dinner, but Sims are such chair-hoppers.