Generation 2- Afterword

So that concludes generation two. Writing this, I always thought of generations one and two loosely making up the first ‘arc’. The Potion of Youth arc, thereof.

A random thought on those potions of youths. Being a medchem major, I have a few problems about how Leo went about this whole experimental process. Yeah people back then didn’t have FDA guidelines, and they always tasted the thing they discovered (including the guy that discovered cyanide, I heard) but it’s still weird. I mean, did he think a plant model would really translate into a human model?

Also from my roomie (a pharmacy major): “I hope he was wearing his big boy safety goggles. Ya know, good alchemy lab practice and all. What a shame, he could have gotten rich a lot quicker if he hooked everyone in town up with the strong stuff.”

I often think I wouldn’t be in a mess myself, if I’m hooking everyone up in town with the strong stuff. Whatever.

I find that I’m writing this legacy quite differently than if I were to write any other story. I think it’s because it takes place over lifetimes, and the cast of characters always has to rotate, and there’s a constant flow of time that marches on and on and on.

I see the entire ten generations of the legacy as one story, instead of ten individual stories. I write chapters that skip years ahead from the previous one with no explanation, only telling some significant events in their life and leaving out the rest. End result is, there’s not enough time to get to know one character. There’s a strange detachment of the events from the reader. There are so many holes in the story you may as well be reading a sponge.

Yeah I know I can just write more for each generation. But I don’t think I will. The story is about the family as they are battered by time, after all. Thank you all for reading this story despite all its flaws. See you all in generation 3!

2.13 Last Will and Testament


I hadn’t thought about the attic for years, but soon we would need another room and perhaps the unused space there could be put to good use. Even after all this time it seemed wrong to enter it, like violating a sanctuary. My father’s sanctuary.

The air was only half breathable. I coughed, disturbing the cobwebs hanging like lace from the rafters. The room was surprisingly neat, though my father hadn’t been a neat person. Books were tucked away in boxes along the wall, next to an imposing suit of armor. The table stood out, dark against the peeling white paint. Upon it was a single sheet of paper. I picked it up.

To my dearest family.

My hands began to tremble and I almost dropped my father’s last will and testament.

These are things I should have told you when I was still alive but was too afraid to.

You always said, Yuki, that alchemists were long dead, and I never said a word otherwise. But this isn’t true.

I am an alchemist. Our family is descended from alchemists, and the alchemy is passed down through the last-born child to the next generation. Libra, as my only child, you are the heir to the alchemy. This is why we can see reapers. This is why our family will always be haunted by them.

We disrupt the balance or life and death. I have done it myself, brewing several youth potions that extend life. But an alchemist can only ever brew enough potion to support one person, and I could not stand the thought of living without you, Yuki. I once gave you a glass of potion without telling you what it was because I was afraid. Forgive me.

I am a coward; a strange sort of coward that chooses death over immortality, because there is someone I can’t bear to outlive. A coward that could not tell the truth to my family. Even as I write this I cannot help but worry what you will think of me when you read this. I cannot help hope you won’t ever find this.

To my daughter, Libra, I bequeath everything I have. Under this table is my stash of youth potions, and the recipe to make them. If you ever find someone you want to spend eternity with, one that will stay with you…

Grim’s face flashed in my mind. Father thought this might happen all along.

Use them. These are for you.

P.S. I fed a vial to the plant. I felt my little helper deserved it. I hope you don’t mind.

The tears were hazy in my eyes as I looked up to the windowsill. A plant was flowering, its roots breaking through the crudely baked clay pot in search of better soil. Its flower looked like nothing I’d ever seen before.

I carefully lifted the plant together with what was left of the pot and descended from the attic. As I locked the door behind me I knew I would never open it again, that I would not be able to tell Grim of this.

I shared with my father the same choice, the same decision for the same reason, and now, the same guilt.

The pot I put on the kitchen counter. Resting my head on my elbows, I looked out the window. There they were- my reason to live, my reason to die. Watching Grim playing with our daughter in the garden, I stood and cried for a long time.


Believe it or not, that’s the end of generation 2. Yay! I’ll be back next week with generation 3, and there’ll probably be an afterword in between. Thanks for sticking around for this unfulfilling story with many holes. Love ya all!

2.12 The Hitchhiker’s Nowhere


One night after Libra was asleep I found myself opening the door to a bar in the middle of nowhere- the haunt for all kinds of Hitchhikers. A place where I, a Hitchhiker on life, used to frequent. Old habits rearing their heads.

My colleague, or perhaps he is now my former colleague, greeted me with a scowl from our usual place at the bar. “I am temporarily taking over your jurisdiction until there is a replacement.” He said as I approached, looked highly unamused. He already seemed to be several drinks in.

“Cheers to no more working,” I said in reply.

His stare turned incredulous. “Do you get it? You’ve lost your job! You will start winding down now. In a few short decades you’ll be gone!”

Of course I knew what it meant to lose my job. I already started to feel the changes. When I walked down the streets with Libra, I could feel her boots hit the stones, keeping in pace with me. The sensation was achingly sweet.

“I never thought you’d be stupid enough for that. With an alchemist, of all things.” He shook his head in disgust.

“You wouldn’t understand until it happens to you.”

“Won’t happen.”

“It might, some day. It’s a part of life.”

“And what would I know of life?” He downed the rest of his glass with one gulp. “I won’t give you the satisfaction of hearing me say how boring it’ll be to drink alone from now. Look at you, standing there, not touching anything, like you are above this place. It’s sickening.”

“I just don’t feel like I should touch anything anymore.” After all, this was my last night here.

“Whatever.” Which was his way of telling me to leave.

I would have liked to end this night like any other, like we had done countless times before- drinking, talking, joking about things no one else found remotely funny, but it would have been selfish of me to expect it, since I was the one leaving. I turned to the door.

“I’ll be visiting later,” he called from behind me. “Tonight’s the night for her mother.”

2.11 Defined


Would this last? The question briefly crossed my mind as we walked home together, my hand in his. But I didn’t want to think of the future, I wanted to focus on now. Even if it is irresponsible, I wanted to ignore the consequences.

I was already used to the idea of loving someone no one else could see. I would never be able to tell anyone of his existence. Some may suspect I am delusional or insane. But that would be my fight, my fight for something that will make me happy.

As we neared my house I said, “I can’t keep calling you the Grim Reaper. Then I can’t call you out amongst the other reapers. I’m going to call you Grim Winter, so they’ll know I’m talking about the one special reaper that belongs with me. Is that… is that okay?” I trailed off at the strange expression on his face.

Without warning, he pulled me against him and held me tight.

“…Grim?” My voice came out muffled against his chest.

“Defined,” I heard him murmur.


“Nothing,” he said. “Nothing.” But he said it like it meant everything.


Random character summary, before it gets confusing xD

Leo: That founder dude.

Yuki: The angel that put up with Leo.

Libra: A headstrong young woman and the heir of the alchemy.

Grim Reaper: a.k.a. Jerk Reaper/that rat bastard, that scene-stealing Death with dirty blonde hair.

Grim Winter: a.k.a. the other reaper, the Death that fell in love with the alchemist.

2.10 Orbit


It was hard to see through the rain of petals being thrown from upper windows in a shower of pink and red as I picked my way through the dancing people towards the town square. It seemed like only yesterday we had marched down these same streets, shouting of equality and opportunities. Now everyone was celebrating love.

“Find something new to fight for,” my mother told me when I was lost in the aftermath of our victory. “Anything that will make you happy.” That’s when I decided it finally did not matter.

I sat on a bench at the edge of the square, watching as couples twirled and kissed, lost in a crowd yet alone with each other. As for me, I was just alone.

People approached me and held their hand out for a dance. I rejected one hand, then two. The third was the charm.

Because then he was here. My best friend, who was hard to love yet even harder not to. He had not changed a bit, which was expected, I suppose. It was still strange to see, regardless.

He slipped onto the bench next to me. It was something we used to do all the time, where one would quietly take a seat beside the other, neither of us would acknowledge the other’s presence but taking comfort in knowing we were in the same place, seeing the same thing. Like the dancing couples in the square, we were slipping into a half-forgotten, yet familiar routine.

“Why are you here?” he asked some time later.

“I’m waiting for someone,” I said. “Why are you here?”

“I’m here because I was hoping I’m the one you’re waiting for.”

I would have told him he was, but he knew that already. I would have told him that I missed him, but that would have been too obvious. We never spoke of the obvious things. Instead I turned to him and said, “Would you like to come with me? To see the rest of the festival, I mean. I would dance with you, but people would think I’m dancing alone.”

“I didn’t think you would mind,” he said dryly, but his mouth was curved into a wry smile.

I laughed and pulled him up, and we threw ourselves amongst the dancing masses.

What was it like? I thought it would be awkward, but it was anything but. It was exactly what we had been doing for the past few years, after all. Orbiting each other, he physically, me in my thoughts. See, he had kept his promise of staying not too close, not too far.

As another fresh wave of petals fell from above, celebrating love of all shapes and sizes, I wrapped my arms around him and kept them there.

Concluding the orbit.

2.9 1/2 Intermission: Some stories and a goodbye

We interrupt the scheduled program to bring you some unwritten stories of Winter’s Alchemy so far. Once again, you don’t have to read this.

So, being relatively new to the game, I made a bunch of mistakes and did lots of stupid stuff, and it certainly was an experience. Tons of things happened, but I left some episodes out because they didn’t fit with the plot or were just too damn weird.

Like what happened in the Bjorgsens’. Before they gave me the boot, I camped out in their house 24/7. Then one day, they started to show some erratic behavior I never saw in my previous game. Bjorn came to breakfast stark naked. Leo didn’t seem bothered. I thought, uhm, ok, you sure you don’t wanna cover up before your daughters come down? Then Sofia and Elsa came down, and they are also both stark naked. I vividly remember frantically walking Leo this way and that, screaming “Don’t look at Elsa! Don’t look at Elsa!!” I should have taken screenshots of that, just to prove it happened, but there was just something very weird about screenshotting that when I never screenshotted otherwise.

It was just a happening then, a prank a bunch of cheeky semi-nudists decided to play, but the more I think about it, the more I wonder. Maybe it was something else…? What if I had seen the surface of something much bigger and sinister? What if… What if Bjorn was actually a leader of a nudist cult?? He and his two daughters must be in it… the whole family, except for Clara. Under the façade of a perfect family, Clara Bjorgsen is trapped in a cultist family with no means of escape!! Please, if anyone feels anything for this story at all, spread the word. Use the hashtag #FreeClaraBjorgsen to support the cause. Thank you.

Another thing that happened, though definitely not as weird, was Candy once visited the house back when it was two rooms: a bedroom and a bathroom. Made of dry walls, a window and a door. I can’t even remember if there was a roof. She came in a fury and proceeded to demolish Libra’s dollhouse. I’m sure the game coding had its reasons, but I like to think it was because she saw for the first time the squalor her little sister lived in, and was furious at Leo. She would have had a point. I have no idea why I decided not to write about that… hmm. I probably missed the timing.

That chapter with an elder who unfortunately passed away on the doorstep, that actually happened. His name was really Odin too, but I couldn’t remember his last name so I asked my roomie for a random one. None of my sims had ever met the guy before then, let alone had time to build any sort of relationship, yet when he died they all came out and started crying. They were sad for ages. So rest in peace, Odin, who turned up on my doorstep and created mass havoc, causing a jam in the perfectly working clockwork that was my family and making them miserable for days. You will be missed.

Random side note, when I was writing Odin’s death, I went and looked up the average person’s lifespan in the 1700s, and apparently it was 36 in the US. I thought, goodness Leo… I hate to say this… but you should already be… well. Gone by now. Whatever. My story, my rules. I’ll have you live at least another 5 chapters.

Which brings us to… our dear founder, Leo Winter. A bit awkward, a bit weak, definitely not perfect. The dude made a lot of mistakes in life, including but not limited to lying to his family about Very Important Things. Plot-wise, this guy started a legacy, built a two-story house from nothing, and successfully made the potion of youth.

He also set the precedent of the legacy heirs being overachievers, having completed 8 adult aspirations. Good thing they made them easier, because I like obsessively pursuing aspirations and watching them stack up. At the time I felt I went a bit overboard, but further down the line came a certain heir that blew Leo’s achievements out of the water… That is a story for another time.

Anyway, this guy made a lot of mistakes and told a lot of lies, some of which he took to the grave. But I feel that all of that was humane. Humans are weak like that, and they bear the guilt. They carry on. Life isn’t easy, and I like to think that despite it all he was a good person, and that he’s returned to happier times in the afterlife.

On that note, here’s little Leo and his mother. I’ll miss you, Leo. Goodbye.

leo and mom

2.9 Some Day


My father died on the 9th of January, 1774. He was cremated and his ashes were scattered from a cliff into the river below.

While my mother stood on the edge, lost in thought, I retreated to a small bench further in. The other reaper joined me, like I knew he would. Neither of us looked at the other.

“It wasn’t you, was it?” I said, after a while.

“No,” he said. “But it doesn’t matter, does it?”

“No,” I agreed, wishing it was any other way. “Maybe in a while. In another month, or a year, or a decade…”

“It’s alright if you’re not okay. I’ll be there when you are. Until then I won’t be too close.”

“But not too far,” I said quickly.

“Not too far,” he said, and disappeared like mist, leaving behind an empty loneliness that was shaped exactly like him.



The snow was melting into messy puddles on the grass, yet the air was still chilly. Probably not a good idea to be sitting outside in the shade, yet I felt a sort of peace watching as the sunlight travelled over the grass.

Libra comes outside, a blanket wrapped around her. She quietly sits down next to me and hands me a hot cup of tea. My favorite. It tastes of simpler times wrapped in rain and crinkled book pages, times shared with someone that has left and will never return.

“I wanted to thank you,” said Libra. “For everything, and more. You never once told me that I should find myself a man and get married. You never told me my behavior was unladylike, or that I shouldn’t do something or another.”

I shook my head, bewildered. “Well why would we, when what will happen will happen?”

She just laughed. “You two are quite unlike most parents, you know.”

“Why was this on your mind?” I remembered a question I had for a while now, but had been buried amidst the grief. “Is there someone?”

“What do you mean?”

“You know what I mean,” I prompted. “Someone. Someone special.”

Libra’s gaze had been fixed on a point somewhere in the distance, and she looked away, blushing. “No, not yet.”

I shrugged away my confusion. The sun was beginning to creep below the horizon.

“I have a question for you too,” said Libra. “Are you okay?”

“Maybe. Some day.” We watched as the last sliver of sunlight slipped over the hill. “Not today.”

2.8 Undeniable


If there is one thing no one can get used to, it is for Death to be living in your house. All my attention was subconsciously directed towards the Reaper. Strangely tense when I didn’t know where he was. Gaze drifting to odd corners of the room when he was close. But maybe this is because I am an old man, set in my ways and too close to the other side. My daughter doesn’t mind him sitting with her when she reads. She converses with him when she tends the garden.

This in itself didn’t worry me. It was the alchemist’s lot, after all.

I worried, constantly, incessantly, that she would find out of my lies. I never got around to destroying the evidence of alchemy, still locked out of reach in the attic. If I were honest to myself, I would have said I was putting it off, but it was too late for me to be honest about anything, even to myself.

Especially myself.

There was no reason to hold off, anyway. I was still sure of my decision.

I was right.

I was right.

I was…

I looked out the window, where Libra sat with the Reaper in the garden. He said something to her with his dry demeanor. She covered her mouth and laughed until her face turned red, and he, watching her, smiled almost shyly.

There it was, the undeniable evidence, the thing I had been denying this whole time. Telling me that I may yet be wrong.

When he looked at my baby girl, what I saw in his eyes was beyond admiration.

With slow trepidation, I climbed the stairs to the attic. I was truly ready now. It was time to put everything in order.

2.7 The Other Reaper


The Grim Reaper was standing in a corner of the room, frowning at me. This one I had never met before, but I recognized him from Libra’s description: silver hair, silver like starlight.

“You’re here for me again? Already?” I leaned back on my pillow, a sort of peace in my mind now that I’ve made my decision. If this was the end, it wasn’t so bad. It certainly made ‘taking secrets to the grave’ easier.

“Not so fast,” said the reaper. “It’s not your time yet. I’m just here to keep an eye on you.”

“You’re staying here?”

“In the background. Don’t mind me.”

As if anyone could ignore death floating around their house.

“Don’t…” I swallowed, and my throat felt raw. “Don’t tell my family anything.”

“I won’t. It’s none of my concern.”

“Swear you won’t.”

I stared hard at his expression, but it did not change as he said, “I swear.”


‘Shocked’ was a bit of an understatement for what I felt when I saw the other reaper coming out of my father’s room.

“Don’t worry,” he said, when he saw me. “It’s not his time yet. Once we delay a reaping, a new date of death is assigned and we aren’t able to reap the soul before then. I am merely here to keep an eye on things.”

“How long has my father been given?”

“That I can’t tell you.”

That was fair, I supposed. Perhaps I would try to catch him out into telling me another time. “I thought this wasn’t your jurisdiction,” I said instead.

“I’m just helping out.” He was staring at me with a frown on his face, which seemed to be his standard expression.

“What?” I said, the word coming out more defensive than I had intended.

“I just wanted to say. The other day when you faced down my colleague…”


“It was very brave.”

I scoffed. “It was hypocritical. I think your colleague had a point.”

“It’s hard to be consistent when faced with death.”

“You don’t think it was nosy? Many people have told me I have that problem.”

“If there is a time to be nosy, I would say it’s when your father’s life is on the line.”

I couldn’t help but laugh. If there is one thing more bizarre than talking to Death, it is Death to be justifying why I got in his way.

I was startled by my name being called from behind me, and turned to find my mother in the hallway, looking concerned.

I tried to smile reassuringly. “Father is awake.”

She let out a sigh of relief, pressing past me into the room.

I looked back at the other reaper. “So you’re staying here?”

“I am.”

“I guess I’ll be running into you quite a bit then.”

The corner of his mouth twitches upwards, and for a second it is as if he is almost smiling. “Yes, I guess you will.”

2.6 Voices and Lies


I was wandering through a haze of shadowy corners and blurred edges, looking for a way back to myself. All around me buzzed a conversation.

A voice I had heard somewhere before drawled, “What is it with humans and names, hmm? Alchemists in particular. They put so much meaning behind them. It’s bizarre.”

A second voice, one I could not place, replied, “They lead short lives. They want to be defined. Different from everyone else.”

“That,” said the first voice, “is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard.”

“That’s life.”

“Ha! And what would I know of life?”

The laughter was still ringing in my ears when I finally opened my eyes.

Reality is filled with sharp lines that cut scars in space, and the light is so bright it’s chilling.

“You’re awake,” said a voice. A real voice, carrying a weight so tangible I can almost feel its pressure against my eardrums. Libra sat at my bedside, hands clasped on her lap.

“Libra,” I said, my voice barely above a croak. “What happened?”

“You collapsed. I thought you were going to die.”

It was starting to come back to me- the dizziness, the rushing blackness… “End of the line for you, alchemist”… I thought you were going to die.

“Where’s Yuki?”

“She’s asleep now, but she was here a few hours ago.” Libra looked on edge, like there was something she wanted to say.

“What is it honey? What’s bothering you?”

“This is going to sound very strange,” she said, biting her lip, “but when you collapsed… they… I mean…”

“Were you there?”


“Did you…” Deep breath. “Did you see the Grim Reaper?”

“I d-did. Two of them.”


“Two. One was a bureaucratic sadist with empty black eyes.”

Him and I have met.

“The other one had silver hair.” She thought for a while. “Silver like starlight.” She shrugged, like she couldn’t think of anything else to say about him.

“I thought you might be able to see them. It’s… it’s something that runs in the family. My mother used to see them too, and her father, and grandfather… Have you told your mother?”

“No. I didn’t think she’d believe me. I-I thought you might, though.”

I exhaled in relief. “Promise me you won’t tell her. She can’t see them.”

Libra nodded. “Good thing she didn’t walk in then. She was in the garden while it happened.”

We were silent awhile, contemplating this.

“Before they left, they said you can’t avoid them forever,” said Libra, haltingly. “Th-they said you’d know that.”

They were right. Because I know.

An alchemist may live on the potion forever, if they never stop making more. But it will never, ever support more than one person. Libra and I could live off the potion, but not Yuki. And I can’t live without Yuki.

No good will ever come from alchemy, a dying form of science that dies with its practitioners. It has brought nothing but sorrow to us- we’ve been haunted by Death for as long as we have existed. It is better to bury this. Destroy everything I’ve made, burn the journals. The piece of armor will be passed down through the generations, nothing more than a decorative heirloom, all meaning removed.

Libra bit her lip. “What did they mean? What’s happening?”

I am talking in a series of lies.

I don’t know why we can see them. I don’t why they felt they needed safety precautions, or why they think I may evade them. I don’t know anything at all.

“I’m sorry, honey. I know as much as you do. I suppose all people know they can’t avoid death forever. Maybe that’s what they meant?”

Disappointment was evident in Libra’s face, but she just nodded. After a while, she left the room, and the door clicked shut behind her.

“So why did you lie?” said the voice from behind me.