“What are we going to do about Seb?” Rayne asked her sister when she came inside from her swim to grab something out of the fridge. Their brother hadn’t been himself at all lately. Not since that weasel Nikki Prince used him and stomped on his heart. Ooooh if she ever got her hands on Nikki again after she had her brother’s baby, she’d pommel her so far into the ground, they’d need to have an excavation and bring in archaeologists to locate her again.
“I dunno, go beat the crap out of Nikki after she has the baby?” Ariel suggested, sitting down with a bowl of cereal. With her muscles and athletic ability, Ariel was probably better suited to beating people up. She wasn’t exactly a genius like both Rayne and Sebastian. In fact, she was a little on the dumb side when it came to academic matters. The only reason Ariel had straight As was because she had two genius siblings to help her with her homework and assignments, but what Ariel lacked in brains, she made up for in physical excellence.
Rayne laughed and finished the last of her cake off her plate. “I wish, but that’d probably depress him more,” she pointed out. “He still loves her, remember? That’s why he’s in this mopey state.”
“Well then there’s not much we can do, is there?” Ariel told her sister. “I mean, it’s not like we can make him stop loving Nikki. We can tell him what a terrible person she is all we want but that won’t change his feelings. It’ll just make him hate us, instead. If he’s gonna get over her, he’s gotta do it on his own terms, you know?” Rayne smiled and nodded, feeling like she didn’t give her ‘dumb’ sister enough credit, sometimes. She was smarter than she seemed when it came to important life lessons like this.
“I guess… did you know he’s not going to prom? He said he’d feel like a loser going by himself after Nikki ditched him,” Rayne said sadly. Ariel stopped mid-bite to stare at Rayne.
“Well that’s stupid. He’s not going by himself. He’s going with us!”
Up in Rayne’s bedroom, the two sisters hatched a plan: Operation Get Seb To Prom. It couldn’t fail. It would work, even if they had to carry him kicking and screaming in his pyjamas.
* * *
“Seb! Hurry up! The limo’s going to be here any second!” Rayne shouted, bursting into her brother’s bedroom with Ariel right at her heels. There was a moan from the bed and Sebastian rolled away from them, still in his pyjamas, as predicted.
“I’m not going. I already told you. You go have fun,” he mumbled.
“Oh come on, Seb! You can’t just not go to prom! I’m pretty sure it’s against some kind of unwritten teenage law or something,” Rayne protested.
“Besides, it’s a once in a lifetime thing. You only get one prom in your whole entire life. You’ll look back and regret missing it later if you don’t go,” Ariel reasoned with him.
“I don’t care. I’m not going.”
“Well then we aren’t, either,” Rayne said firmly, sitting on the edge of Sebastian’s bed. That got Sebastian’s attention. He sat straight up, giving his sisters a look of shock and bewilderment.
“What? What do you mean? You’re both excited about it, you wouldn’t shut up about it for months. Why would you miss it because of me?” he frowned. Ariel rolled her eyes and crossed her arms.
“Because you’re our big brother and we love you, you moron, that’s why. Plus it’ll be lame if we go by ourselves. We were going to take you as our date and then we’d be cool. The Sword triplets walking in together to start the party and everything. The paparazzi will love it,” she winked.
“Both of you were going to be my date?” he asked disbelievingly. “I don’t think that’s how that works, guys.”
“Who says? Come on, Seb, you’ll be the coolest guy there. How many other guys will be walking in there with two pretty girls on his arm?” Rayne laughed and Sebastian shook his head, but he was smiling. Smiles were rare from him these days so it made his sisters’ hearts soar triumphantly knowing that they were the ones to coax that smile out of him.
“Well… I guess I can’t make my little sisters miss their prom, can I?” he admitted defeat, hopping off his bed. “Can you get the limo to wait for me? There’s no way I’m showing up to prom in pyjamas.” He stepped forward and gave both his sisters a warm hug. “Thanks guys. You’re the best sisters in the world.”
“Oh we know,” Rayne grinned while Ariel cracked up.
* * *
“You can’t seriously be going to your prom looking like that, young lady,” their father frowned disapprovingly at Rayne’s skin-tight, short and strapless tube dress. Rayne looked down at herself.
“Sure I am. What’s wrong with it?” she demanded.
“It’s too revealing! It’s not appropriate for a girl your age. I want you to go back inside and put something more respectable–” he was cut off by the family coming to Rayne’s defence.
“Honey, there’s no time for her to change and she’s going to be eighteen in a few days,” Monica pointed out gently. “She should be able to make her own decisions about her wardrobe by now, I think. She’s a grown woman.”
“To be fair, my dress isn’t much longer than hers so you might as well punish me, too, if you’re going to punish her,” Ariel argued.
“Don’t worry, Dad. I’ll watch out for her. If anyone touches her, I’ll pull the big bad brother card out on them,” Sebastian promised.
“Seb! No one’s going to want to dance with me if my brother’s glaring at them over my shoulder!” Rayne moaned.
“Your limo’s here! Don’t miss it. Have a good time, you three!” Monica announced as hugs were exchanged between everyone. Alton reached out to lightly touch the ends of his daughter’s hair.
“… Your mother used to wear her hair like that, you know,” he murmured.
“I know. I saw the pictures in the family album and asked Monica to do my hair like hers,” Rayne smiled. Her father swallowed hard and swept her up in a tight hug.
“I love you.”
“I love you, too, Dad… now let me go, please, I don’t want to miss my limo!”
* * *
As the sisters predicted, the cameras loved them arriving together. Cameras flashed and microphones were shoved under their noses as soon as they stepped out of the limo.
“You all look amazing tonight! Tell us, what sort of style were the three of you going for?”
“Who are you wearing?”
“Rayne, was your decision to wear your hair in Soothing Heartbreak’s signature style deliberate?”
The triplets, quite used to being tailed by reporters everywhere they went, were completely comfortable, smiling and waving and answering questions as they entered the venue the school had rented out for the grandest event of the year. The paparazzi were in love with them. The only thing that dampened their entrance was the sight of Nikki Prince on the dance floor when they walked in. Sebastian stopped dead in his tracks, seemingly unable to take his eyes off of her. Despite her massive belly, Nikki looked wonderful. Even Ariel and Rayne had to grudgingly admit that much when they saw her. She shot him a smug smile, as if she knew she looked good and was trying to rub it in his face.
Rayne scowled and tugged her brother away from her. “Come on, let’s just ignore her.”
“I didn’t think she’d even be here, with how you know… pregnant she is,” Ariel commented. Nikki looked like she could pop at any moment. Rayne rolled her eyes.
“Please. Nikki Prince wouldn’t miss a chance to hog attention if the world was ending.”
But that was all that was said of Nikki for the next couple of hours. Neither Rayne or Ariel wanted to spend all night bashing her in front of their brother, who clearly still cared about her. It was rude and hurtful and they wanted him to have a good prom, too. Sebastian tried his best to have a good time but he kept glancing sadly over at Nikki, who was trying to draw attention to herself by having people come up to her to rub her belly and chatting excitedly about the ‘miracle of motherhood’… as if she knew anything about what she was talking about. Complete strangers get to rub her belly and talk to our baby. I’m the baby’s father and I’m not even allowed near either of them… Sebastian thought with dismay to himself.
Eventually, simply showing off from a distance wasn’t enough for Nikki and she strode over to the triplets on the dance floor, rubbing her huge belly. “Isn’t the venue incredible? My father paid for the school to have its prom here, you know. You should all be grateful,” she sniffed haughtily, quickly losing interest in her belly to smooth her already perfect hair.
Before Sebastian could formulate a response to that, Rayne stepped forward, looking like she just swallowed a whole lemon. “What do you want, Nikki? Just spit it out and get lost.”
“Excuse me, Soothing Heartbreak wannabe, but I can talk to the father of my baby anytime I damn well please, thank you!” Nikki snapped at her. If Sebastian was planning on maintaining a polite demeanour, it was shattered. No one insulted his mother or his sister, especially not both in the same breath. Not even Nikki Prince. It was Sebastian’s turn to scowl and step forward.
“Well, I don’t want to talk to you so you heard her. Get lost. You don’t even care that I’m your baby’s dad, you won’t let me have anything to do with the baby anyway except send you cheques. You can give up the act because I’m not buying it anymore,” he growled at her, his hands balled into angry fists. The cameras started flashing quickly again and Sebastian knew he’d have to tread carefully if he didn’t want another bad story published about him in next month’s issue of Sim Celebs.
“You’re just a money-grubbing, fame-seeking loser, Nikki, and one day, everyone will know it. It’ll come back to haunt you one day,” Ariel told the snooty pregnant girl coldly. Nikki rolled her eyes and put a hand up to brush Ariel off, showing off her belly for the paparazzo who was excitedly snapping pictures a couple feet away.