"A beautiful lady is an accident of nature." - Louis Nizer
It's been awhile since they spoke. What Kyle did was stupid, and he knew it, he was just happy that things didn't go as far as he and his buddies said it did. Jia was nothing but trouble, and he was beginning to realize that. But then again...Jia wasn't an ordinary girl. She was deeper than that, and she was special. So what mattered more to him, Jia, or his family's safety?
He cringed when he remembered Charles' message to him after school that day...
"Listen d-bag, I know all about what you did to Jia that night. Mark my words, if I ever see your face outside of school again with MY Jia, you're gonna pay."
"Whoa man, you have the wrong idea..."
"You're going to pay, your family is going to pay, and Jia will pay. You will all pay, so help me Plumbbob!"
Charles grinned a wicked grin and said "Have you ever heard of 'death by fire'?"
And that still sent chills up Kyle's spine, two months later.
As for Jia, she grew tired of it. Being the girlfriend of a mafia family was no longer thrilling to her, just boring. And the only reason she and Charles connected in the first place is because they both have ridiculously argumentative parents. But now, because of the rumors, the guys won't come up to her and flirt with her anymore out of fear. And whenever she'd flirt with them...well...Charles wasn't happy. Of course, knowing Sim Fu came in handy, so she could knock him down at any moment. But she didn't want to. If you have to fight your boyfriend to save your own life, is that even a relationship? Why did she have such an awful history with men?
Except Kyle. Kyle was different. He was sweet, funny, smart...or at least, in the intellectual sense. He was everything Charles wasn't. And he was flirty, just like her. He understood her.
She could hear them outside of her door, arguing. Again. She sighed under her breath and slowly walked up the stairs, wondering why they can't just call it quits. For everyone's sake.
"You're worthless!! Absolutely worthless!" Nasa screamed in her impossibly high-pitched voice. She then saw Jia come in, and quieted down a bit. "Let's go somewhere else and discuss this."
"I'm worthless?! The only reason we're still arguing is because you can't get over one flirt I had with a girl in China. One!! You, my dear, are the worthless one and when I die, you're not getting a penny!"
"Ooh, you-" Nasa bit her tongue. "Not in front of Jia, dear."
Pao looked at their daughter and her chosen attire for today. With a disgusted look on his face, he said
"I have no daughter. Jia is dead to me."
And that's when she ran.
Her dad is sexist. Her mom is a gold-digger. Her brother was a nerd. She's a whore. She's heard it all before, and none of it hurts her. Pao was right, he has no daughter. His daughter died a long time ago.
Now, all that's left is a shell. A shell that is bulletproof, and well-guarded. Nothing matters anymore.
She sat down in a little jungle gym the house next door to Kyle's had. She felt just like a little kid again. She wasn't expecting much, but just knowing that she was physically close to Kyle's home made her feel better somehow.
Kyle spotted her and started climbing up the ladder. He chuckled and said "Jia, what are you doing here? You might want to get out of here before your boyfriend pummels me."
"My parents were fighting again, I just needed somewhere to go." She said, after chuckling a little herself.
"Okay, I'll bite. Tell me about it."
"No, you wouldn't get it."
"Then explain it to me."
"...and the schoolwork, augh! My parents push the importance of grades so much, you know? I try my best, and it isn't enough. I get an A+, and they ask why it isn't an A++. I finally gave up trying to be perfect for them, so I purposely started getting Cs. And they argue about everything! Sometimes, I think my mother only married my father for the money, and he only married her because she was the 'perfect, submissive woman' that would cook and clean all day. I just can't understand sims. I can't."
Kyle and Jia (well, mostly Jia) continued to rant about their problems, and it made her feel a lot better. Like she wasn't alone in this, and someone actually knew what she was talking about.
"Well, I've gotta go, but thank you for listening." she said gratefully.
And with that, she was gone.
The arrival of the baby was an overshadowed one. Sandy was so wrapped up in her novels that she forgot she was even pregnant, and Brandon was so wrapped up with work that he forgot as well. Everyone was caught up in their own little world, their own little problems, and Lily's birth was a wake-up call.
A little while after Lily's birth, Kyle decided to venture down to a local club. "Damn, look at all the hot chicks!" he thought to himself. He even danced with one, her name was Eliza. Eliza was such a pretty name.
That's when he heard laughter.
"Well well well, look what we have here." Charles cackled. He had his two "henchmen" beside him, one of them had their face partially covered by the lamp. That made Kyle chuckle.
"What's so funny prettyboy, huh? We told you not to come near us again! You're just askin' for it now!"
"Boys, pull out your knives." Charles commanded.
Kyle began to protest when he saw them pull out pocket knives. He tried to explain, but all that came out were incomplete sentences and stutters.
"Look, you wanna cut me, fine! Go ahead, do it! I don't give a ****, just don't hurt my family. Fine, I deserve it. How dare I walk into a place, when I know that there's an off chance you guys will be there. Go ahead. Cut me in front of all these witnesses."
And so they charged at him with their knives, but it wasn't Kyle that they stabbed.
Laying down on the floor, in a pool of blood, was Jia. She had watched the entire thing, and ran in front of Kyle just as they were ready to stab him. Charles and his lackeys looked down on her, and all they could manage to say was "Oh ****."
And with that, they ran, leaving Kyle to stare at Jia's dead body in pure shock and muddled confusion.
"You guys know I didn't do it, right? They came at me, and Jia got in the way. I didn't stab her, I swear!"
Sandy sighed, and Brandon put his head in his palm. They hadn't told the kids yet, and they were sitting right beside Kyle. "What happened? Someone got stabbed?" Issac said in shock. "Oooooh, you stabbed Jiiaaaa" Julie sang.
"Kids, that is ENOUGH!" Sandy screeched. She could hear Lily crying upstairs, probably because she was sleeping.
"The evidence is compelling, Kyle." Brandon said coldly.
"That's because Charles' gang is a rough and violent gang, they're not above setting fire to people's houses and stabbing their peers' parents. They bribed everyone! I swear, I'm innocent!"
"Well, innocent or not, the SHPD will be coming after you, Kyle, based on the testimonies of those who were there."
With weak eyes, Sandy turned to Brandon and whispered "We have to do something. Kyle doesn't have it in him to kill. I know he's innocent, but they believe he's guilty."
Brandon looked at his kids, said a silent prayer for his wallet, and announced that they were moving.
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