Friday, November 30, 2007

Captain Hero #100

One hundred posts! Sort of makes me all goose-bumpy all over (which is far better than being just plain bumpy all over). As I sit back and think of all the time spent playing the sims when I was supposed to be doing something else, or spent posting sims blogs when I was supposed to be doing something else (like right now for example) it awes and inspires me. I am my own hero. I'm no Captain Hero, though…we can't all be that cool.

Before we start, it's time for a little history lesson regarding the new neighborhood. All good books or movies or TV shows I've ever experienced have a couple of things in common. Memorable characters for starters, and if you can remember the sims in this blog from one post to the next, that's good enough for me. A memorable story is always important too, and while it would be nice if every post here had that, it's not really always a storytelling blog, so that's not always promised. The best kinds of stories are the ones that have some sort of conflict, though, and you can't have conflict without one key element…bad guys!

The original Monkeesim neighborhood had some irritating characters to be sure, but nobody designed to be just plain rotten to the core. When I very first designed the new neighborhood, I realized this oversight, and the third family I made (myself first, then the Fultz Family was second) was the Daniels family, featuring the dread pirate, Jack Daniels, and Clarence Andrews. They were created to be as unfriendly as possible, and Clarence even contracted lycanthropy to make him meaner. They were the first members of what I like to call the "Criminal Underground Secret Service", or "CUSS" for short.

The first of the mean CUSSes...

The first time the CUSS agents got any real use was when my sim, Matthew Martin, was robbed and lost four expensive household items. He got out of bed, and saw the burglar, Jenna Boyle, but was unable to apprehend her. Matthew found this quite irritating, and invited Jack Daniels to his house to discuss the matter. Two days later, Jenna was nothing more than the first tombstone in the backyard of the Daniels house. There were some other less intentional deaths at the Daniels house, one of which happened as a direct result of Clarence savaging a houseguest as a werewolf, but generally, Jack and Clarence just stirred up trouble on a smaller scale around town to keep things interesting.

Well, eventually Regina Boyle came along and domesticated Jack Daniels, and he gave up his life of evil (though he's still something of a jerkwad). Clarence later fell in love with his maid, Amy, and quit his criminal career as well. The house got a facelift, children came along, Clarence was cured of lycanthropy, and the CUSS was basically dissolved. Well, the powers that be wouldn't have that, and you can't have good without evil to balance it out, and so, as of late, two new CUSS agents have begun to pop up around town…

Presenting Lawrence and Reeve Madrox...

Lawrence and Reeve have done a fine job of making life miserable for sims around town, and are the suspected accomplices in the "flaming toilet" incident on Leon Jackson's boat. Yes, evil is back, and thus far, no womanly charms have had any affect on the dastardly duo. Scary, eh? Well, have no fear…there are ways to fight criminals besides being charming, and the Monkeesim neighborhood has an individual dedicated to that very ideal…Captain Hero! Now, I can't tell you who Captain Hero really is for privacy reasons (and in case CUSS is reading this blog). You can see her below, though, on a peaceful day at her everyday suburban house, checking the mail, while Shaggy and Scooby Rogers stroll down the block.

Captain Hero: "I hope Scooby doesn't 'doo' his business on my lawn…"

Now, for some sims, becoming a hero just means flying off to work every couple of days and coming home a few hours later with a paycheck. Not our Captain Hero, though. Fighting crime in the Monkeesim neighborhood is more than just a 10 to 4 job, it's a way of life. Sure, she spends a few hours during the day recovering from the battle against evil and doing normal stuff, but even at home, she doesn't rest. Here, we see Captain Hero using her "Hero-Scope" to search out evil. And she's spotted it, in the form of Justin the Jerk…

Captain Hero: "I only wish he hadn't been on the toilet when I spotted him..."

As a superhero, flying is one way to get around, but it tends to draw a lot of attention (as if the costume alone doesn't), and those costly fuels designed to power the suit should really be reserved for the regular work day. Thus, by night, other less conspicuous means of transportation are desirable. Less conspicuous means like Am…er…Captain Hero's ridiculously expensive jet powered sports car. If you're going to cruise the filthy, corrupted streets of Sim City, you might as well do it in style. And so, if was off in the "Hero-Mobile" in search of Justin the Jerk…uh…

Justin: "She'll never think to look for me here!"

One of the toughest things about being a hero is never knowing where evil is going to strike. One could sit around and wait for someone to call them, like that lazy bum Batman with his obnoxious bat-signal, but by then, the damage is usually done. A true hero has great instincts for finding trouble before it starts and cutting the trouble makers off at the pass. Captain Hero's unerring instincts told her the first place she should check around was "Da Tiki Hut", a popular coffee bar in town.

Captain Hero: "My instincts tell me I'll find a double espresso here too..."

Everything was quiet upon Captain Hero's initial arrival. Well, that is everything besides the ear splitting music blaring from the juke box and the roaring din of the chattering patrons. There was no crime to speak of (there was double espresso), but the visit was not a total loss. Captain Hero decided to make use of her inside contacts, and talk to some of the locals who had a good ear for what was going on around town. One such local, Jean Trevolto, chattered on for quite a bit giving the latest dope on local criminal activity. He also tried to slow dance with Captain Hero, but she didn't have time for that.

Captain Hero: "Who are you calling 'Sweet Cheeks', Fat Cheeks?"

Among the other endless babble she'd been exposed to, Captain Hero managed to get a hot tip that some unsavory types had been spotted at the local "Freetime Lounge". Well, that should have been a no-brainer, since half the sims in the Monkeesim neighborhood hang out there, but I'm sure Captain Hero just really wanted that espresso on her first stop. And so, she departed "Da Tiki Hut", disabled her state of the art car alarm, and moved on to her next stop.

Iris: "Who was that masked woman?"

It wasn't long before Am…dang it…Captain Hero arrived at the "Freetime Lounge", and trouble had indeed found its way there already, in the form of Spruce Hartman. The past few posts featuring Spruce have witnessed his decay from ordinary plant sim to trash can vandal to aggressive sim abuser. It now appears he's fully embraced the dark side, having traded his green sweats for black clothes and "bitchin" shades. Spruce was just beginning to case the joint, looking for poor saps (haha) to pick on when Captain Hero walked in.

Behold the evil "Plant Man"...

It seemed inevitable that Spruce wasn't going to give up his turf without a fight. Luckily, one thing that Captain Hero possesses is maxed out body skills, and she's more than up for a fist fight if the need should arise. She confronted Spruce, and gave him a good poking, to which he poked her right back. This continued for a couple of rounds until Spruce apparently conceded the poking match, rubbed his chest, and started sobbing. Man, the tough ones all talk a good show, but stand up to their nonsense, and they're crying like a girl sitting in the dark listening to Lionel Ritchie sing "Endless Love" (no offense to any women who read this who do that).

Captain Hero: "Next time, I won't just poke you, I'll slap you around a bit first!"

Wow. He seemed a lot tougher than that when he beat up Kitty Wilson and Tommy Wolf. Must have been the costume that did him in. At any rate, he went slinking away and didn't cause any trouble, so Captain Hero's work with him was done. See how that whole "cutting trouble off at the pass" thing works? Eat your heart out, Batman. Captain Hero didn't have any other leads at the moment, but she'd heard of a recent altercation at the local bowling alley between local Katrina Wilson and the villainous Justin the Jerk. She decided it couldn't hurt to pay a visit and see what developed.

Captain Hero: "Now I just need a sidekick and gadget making butler…wait, I bit my butler..."

Despite the double smack down that had taken place mere posts ago, there was nothing going on at the bowling alley when Captain Hero arrived. And by nothing, I mean really nothing - nobody was bowling or anything, there were a couple of sims having lunch but overall, it was an incredibly boring scene. Boring means safe, though, and that's what Captain Hero is all about. On the up side, not having to kick any butt or poke anyone meant she had time to bowl a couple of frames herself.

Captain Hero: "Captain Hero 'strikes' again! Woo hoo!"

As fun as a break from getting into it with bad guys may be, when you're a hero, there's no such thing as too much of a break. After proving her skillz at the bowling alley, Captain Hero decided to head out. Part of being a hero that people are happy to see out and about protecting them is being nice and friendly to everyone, otherwise, you're just some loner freak in a costume. Captain Hero had the social part down, always taking time to point at and utter a greeting to every person she came in contact with. Time consuming, I know, but if you're a hero nobody likes, like I said, just a weirdo in tights.

Captain Hero: "No need to jump up or anything…I'll show myself out!"

Our hero decided to head on down to "Marty's" next. Partly because there's always trouble at "Marty's" sooner or later, and partly because nobody makes a better lobster thermador or strawberry margarita (sounds pretty good right now actually, and it's not even 8am here yet…lol). Whatever the initial reasons for going there, Captain Hero's instincts served her well. Justin had apparently decided he couldn't hide in her garage forever, and had decided to come stir up trouble on the town, and guess where he headed first…

Captain Hero: "Hey, hold it right there, you jerk! No, not you, sweater guy..."

Captain Hero confronted Justin the Jerk over in front of the bathrooms, in a location remarkably similar to where Kitty tried to take down Spruce not too long ago. Well, first harsh words were exchanged, then the poking began, and Justin wasn't backing down. Strangely, Captain Hero's "interactions" kept getting overridden by Justin's, and after a few minutes, he'd nearly poked her into oblivion without her getting in a decent retort. The worst of it was that he got the final poke in, then decided he'd won and that it was time to leave of his own accord. It appeared Justin the Jerk had won this round…

Justin: "You better return that suit…Halloween was over months ago!"

While it wasn't her fault that Justin had gotten away more or less unscathed, it didn't do very much for Captain Hero's "street cred" to be publicly defeated in such a way. In fact, there were some other unsavory characters lurking in Marty's at the time who saw this as a sign of weakness, and decided to exploit it. Remember the CUSS agents I mentioned earlier? Well, Lawrence Madrox decided it was time to put Captain Hero in her place, and took a break from skulking in the shadows to do a little poking of his own…

Lawrence: "Captain Hero, I'm gonna' CUSS you out..!"

Every hero has a bad day now and then, and Lawrence made a big mistake interpreting Justin's victory as anything more than a fluke. If he'd done his homework, he'd have realized that in order to even achieve the rank of Captain Hero on the law enforcement track, one has to have massive body skills (and yes, the costume was earned, not rented from a costume shop). No sooner had Lawrence's abuse begun than our hero realized the threat he posed, and leapt into action to give him the butt kicking that he deserved.

DJ: "Wait! Wait! Let me queue the fight music first!"

The CUSS agents are good at being nasty to other sims, and sitting at the computers in their secret headquarters planning evil deeds (and filling requests on the "evil deed hotline"), but they generally haven't dedicated a lot of time to body building, so the fight was no contest. As is the case after many such brawls, Lawrence told Captain Hero she was clearly not to be trifled with, but don't you believe it - that's what villains always say. He'll be back somewhere somehow. Besides, it doesn't matter if he messes with Captain Hero directly…if he messes with ANY innocent sim, he's messing with Captain Hero…

Bartender: "Before you go limping away, sir, there's the small matter of your bar tab..."

The butt kicking Captain Hero dealt Lawrence put her back where she belonged in the public eye (forget that stupid Justin the Jerk). Most sims love Captain Hero, and most of them love a good fight…put the two together, and you've got a winning combination. I noticed the whole spectacle even drew my lazy, reclusive sim out of hiding. Meet Matthew Martin, my sim persona (with a slightly altered name for privacy purposes, of course).

Matt: "I'm not just the president of Monkeesims…I'm also a sim..!"

All in all, Captain Hero felt she'd had a pretty successful outing. Sure, there will always be trouble of some sort in a big city, but she'd more or less dealt with the best known trouble makers for the time being, and it was time to return home to catch some shut-eye before it got too late. Upon returning home, however, it appeared that all was not quite right. There was an essence of foreboding creepiness as Captain Hero entered the strangely quiet house. When she went into the back yard, strange lightning seemed to strike out of nowhere and set the weight bench ablaze.

Captain Hero: "Now, what are the odds of that happening?"

Being a hero isn't all about kicking butt, you know. It's also about helping folks in other ways, like giving them fish as presents to help improve their diet or shooing cats who are destroying their property, or dousing the odd blaze here and there. Thus, Captain Hero had her "Hero Extinguisher" on her, and responded instantly. Well, almost instantly. See, her secret identity nearly died in a kitchen fire not too long ago, so she freaked out for a little bit first, probably a little hesitant to risk getting too close to flames again. But duty called, and the fire was soon doused.

Captain Hero: "I don't know why I'm doing this…I can't earn any more body points anyway!"

Once the smoke cleared, Captain Hero had a chance to take a look around and ascertain just what exactly was going on. It was then that her keen powers of observation clued her in to the fact that there was an evil mad scientist in her backyard, making adjustments to a dastardly device. A device of the most evil kind…a machine to turn ordinary sims into evil garden gnomes! Inanimate gnomes, mind you, without the ability to speak or perform actions of any sort, but with the ability to THINK evil thoughts…tell me that isn't scary!

Mad Scientist: "Today, the back yard, tomorrow...the world! Mwahahah!!"

Obviously, there was a confrontation forthcoming. I mean, it's a given that good guys are supposed to fight the bad guys, but also, this is Captain Hero's back yard, and she would have defended it even as her secret identity…evil or no, you don't just set up your workshop in someone's yard (not without asking first). Well, Captain Hero was in for a shock, for when she confronted the evil genius, it turned out to be none other than her husband, Clarence…gone completely off the deep end! She attempted to approach him slowly and reasonably at first, but when he produced an ugly looking knife, it became clear there would be none of that...

Captain Hero: "Hey! Is that our good butcher knife?!"

Well, Clarence may be her husband, but he was performing villainous deeds, and had to be dealt with as a villain. It seems that the stupid looking light bulb hat had either malfunctioned or was just a piece of crap to begin with, and had gone from just making Clarence smarter to making him a genius and complete lunatic at the same time. With the possibility of more sims being turned into garden gnomes looming ominously, Captain Hero decided there was no time for diplomacy. Sure, her suit's not knife-proof, but she didn't take all those boring beat cop knife defense classes for nothing...

Captain Hero: "Listen, pal…why don't you just shove it?!"

Captain Hero took a chance, and gave Evil Clarence the old "heave-ho", right into his dastardly machine. Well, the machine hadn't been properly prepared for "gnomage", and the stupid looking light bulb hat interfered with the integrity of its inner workings. Instead of turning Clarence into a gnome, it just shocked the crap out of him and shorted out the bulb in the hat. After an impressive light show, Clarence was an evil genius no more. Instead, he was just a soggy average Joe in a dirty lab coat with a metal hand.

Captain Hero: "Ooh, wow…pretty!"

Of course, all good hero stories should end with the hero getting the girl (or in this case, the guy), and since Clarence and Captain Hero are married anyhow, the smooch was sort of a given. The threatening with the knife and shoving and harsh words were quickly forgotten…Captain Hero had saved the day once again. Yes, there was the lingering irritation of Justin the Jerk having gotten away, but that would be a matter to address another day. Or the next time Captain Hero goes in the garage…

Captain Hero: "I love you too…can we lose the evil gnomes?"

Well, all's well that ends well, and I'd say that's a pretty good place to end the Captain Hero saga for now. If I don't, chances are good that this post is going to start choking some of the computers out there with all of its pictures, and that's never my goal. I hate to ruin such a happy ending, but I'm sad to report that one of the better known sims from this blog passed on to the other side as of last night. It will be about 24 posts before we get to that point, so no need to worry about it too much yet. Coming up next - we've seen Leon Jackson a bit since he arrived in the new neighborhood, but what ever became of his old buddy, "Moon Dawg"? You'll know soon enough…possibly today if I feel that ambitious. See you then!


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