When the old habits no longer bring anything good with them, it’s time for a rebuild.
Tusnelda has received a revelation and she and Martin are making great efforts to speak out with each other. Sometimes it’s just so hard to find the right words. In some situations, words may be completely superfluous.
In this chapter, we also encounter other recognizable characters. First of all Rasmus who gets an unpleasant surprise.
After the journey to Sixam, everything finds its rightful place in Tusnelda’s head and she falls in a heavy dreamless sleep. Right now nothing can upset her sense of equilibrium and serenity.
Martin wakes up shortly after Tusnelda’s return.
He quietly slips out of the bedroom. He assumes she must be exhausted after a long night without sleep.
He is very relieved that she is already home again and he really hopes that they can resolve their conflict.
Right now, he focuses on what he can control, namely to spend some time analyzing opponents’ teams.
This is not the worst of his daily tasks. It can actually be quite entertaining.
He has a day off today so he will spend the day on his training program and hopefully he and Tusnelda can have a good honest conversation later. He will give her all the freedom she wants, as long as he does not lose her.
The soccer match is over. He will see if Tusnelda is awake before beginning his training.
When Martin enters the bedroom, Tusnelda has just gotten out of bed.
She embraces him immediately without adding any words.
The message is not to be mistaken.
“I’m so glad you’re back.” says Martin.
“So am I!” says Tusnelda … “I discovered on my journey yesterday I was about to lose something truly valuable in my life.”
Now Martin grabs her hands and looks at her seriously….. “I think we both have a lot to sort out. Would you please go on a date with me this afternoon? “he asks.
“Yes, I will! I have so much I want to tell you…. I will call the lab right away to let them know I’m taking a day off.”
Tusnelda calls to the workplace immediately and her heart beats some extra fast heartbeats when she sees Martin’s soft loving eyes.
Damn, how she loves him.
We should probably give them some privacy while sharing their reunion joy.
In the house next door, Rasmus is preparing his breakfast.
He enjoys the cooking and the smell from the frying pan. In while he lets the thoughts flow freely.
When he met Jonna at the cafe yesterday morning she seemed very preoccupied with a book.
He was trying to get a conversation going and he therefore asked what she vas reading.
Jonna sounded very excited when she told him, she was reading the newest crime novel by Helmuth Von Gluck, ‘Lip balm with a taste of murder and cherries‘.
Then she asked Rasmus if he knew of Von Gluck’s crime stories.
He admitted that he did not read that much and he then asked Jonna what the novel was about.
Jonna apologized she was not in the mood for conversation. She was eager to find out who committed the murder. Then she got up from the table.
She picked up the book and went into the cafe to find an undisturbed corner where she could continue her reading.
Rasmus sat back alone, thinking that he should be more interested in literature in the future.
His thoughts are interrupted when he hears Brook’s meow.
“Hi sweet girl. I just need to get ready for breakfast and then I have time for you.” he says.
Voila! Breakfast is ready to eat.
After breakfast, Rasmus examines the bookshelf.
If he remembers correctly, he has one of Helmuth Von Gluck’s crime novels in the collection. It’s a book Blue has left. She is a writer and she enjoyed reading when they were not ….
He quickly stops his thoughts about Blue. She is a chapter over.
The book is a slightly older crime novel by Helmuth Von Gluck called, Point without staring.
It may well work.
The novel is quite exciting at first, but after a while, the many letters begin to tire him.
He impatiently flips further ahead to find the solution of the plot.
He don’t get it?
Should it be necessary to use so much space to describe the detective’s personal problems with his ex-wife and previous love affairs when it has nothing to do with the crime? What is the point of spending so many words writing something that could have been over in a few pages?
He looks thoughtfully at Brooke, who has found a ray of sunshine on the couch.
Rasmus puts the book back on the shelf.
He will never become a writer but for Jonna’s sake he will try to read some more books.
He enjoys their conversations and art and culture seems to be of great interest to her.
Brooke gets up and gives him an encouraging meow as he sits down on the couch.
His thoughts still revolve around the book’s plot.
“I’m not sure I understand the meaning of literature, Brooke … what do you say?”
Brooke gives him another encouraging meow and luckily he chooses to follow her invitation to cuddle her.
For a time, they both enjoy the trust and joy of their mutual friendship. Their common language is free of superfluous words.
He’s not going to work for the next few days and he zaps restlessly around between the various television channels to find something interesting.
There is nothing that appeals to him.
This is the reason he puts on his running clothes.
Instead of running along the beach as he used to, he will try something new today. It’s time for a change.
Except for a new extension, the store looks like its old self from the outside.
Tusnelda can hardly wait to come inside to see the transformation.
She likes what she sees…. Ove and the Aliens in the Space Cutters have done a great job.
The store has been given a green carpet and new wallpaper. She loves the earthy color scheme that gives her a sense of being in the woods.
Where before there was an entrance to her back room, there is now a small hallway.
From here Tusnelda sees a futuristic door leading into the new extension.
The new store expansion is sure to be inspired by Sixam.
Tusnelda’s photographs hang on the wall and on the floor are a number of the floating lamps she has made at work.
The colors of the room are taken from Sixam’s nature with colors in azure blue and purple.
In the middle of the room is a plantation with several plants imported from the planet.
At the other end of the room are some green, blue and purple mannequins with sportswear. A humorous reference to the aliens who live on Sixam.
Tusnelda has found some empty plant pots from the back room and now she is planting some of the seeds she herself has harvested at Sixam.
It all ends with a thorough watering.
She has just filled some empty shelves with seeds, crystals and lamps when she hears someone at the door.
“What do you think of our work?” he ask with a complacent face.
“I think you’ve done a great job!” exclaims Tusnelda enthusiastically.
“Everything is absolutely perfect!”
“Thank you! I’m so grateful! I do not know what I would do without your help.” she continues, giving Ove a huge hug.
Tusnelda and Ove continue to talk about Sixam and the undiscovered wonder of the planet.
It’s like watching a pot of popcorn popping without a lid when they share their joy at the unlimited possibilities of life.
“Do you understand the meaning of that device?” says Fiona to Trix.
“He’s a human!” Trix replies with a short meow.
“Yeah … I think that must be his excuse. Humans can be pretty weird.” hums Fiona.
Outside the shed, the sun is high in the sky and yet Martin chooses to run on the treadmill.
It must amaze any sensible cat.
Now Fie comes by with a newfound treasure. Some glorious feathers from Martin’s glittering cat toy.
“Has anyone seen the rest of this toy?” she asks.
Fiona takes the opportunity to give her a proper ear wash.
Now Futte is attracted to the assembly ….. “What’s up?” she asks curiously.
Right now, Martin is putting all his energy into a final sprint.
He catches sight of the whole assembly of cats.
“Why are you not out in the sun?” he asks wondering.
“As far as I know cats love the sun.”
Shortly after, the kittens have run on and only Trix and Fiona are left.
“You are such a nice guy,” Martin tells Trix.
“So are you, Martin.” Trix kindly purrs back.
Fiona has found a small sunspot in the shed and she rolls around in pleasure. It’s such a lovely day so why should one not enjoy life?
Courtyard Lane in Willow Creek
It’s the first time Rasmus has been in this neighborhood in Willow Creek.
From now on, he intends to combine his run with exploring unknown neighborhoods.
Today it will be Willow Creek and next time maybe a whole other city.
It seems to be a rich man’s neighborhood because along the sidewalk he sees one big white house after another.
He turns a corner and runs along a river.
On the other side of the river he sees a park that might well be Magnolia Blossom Park?
He will have to find out later.
He runs past another magnificent large house on his left.
Now he sees another side river and a beautiful green park ahead.
He continues straight ahead over the bridge that connects the Courtyard Lane district with the next district in Willow Creek.
Afternoon in Brindleton Bay
Tusnelda has returned home from the shop and when you now see her and Martin together you should not think it is only a few hours since they last saw each other.
“How was your day?” asks Martin.
“I’ve seen the rebuilding of my shop and it’s amazing! … The Space Cutters have done an amazing job. Aliens must possess some magical abilities.” Tusnelda answers happily.
“I’m sure they have,” Martin replies kindly after which he grabs Tusnelda’s hands.
He loves the fire in her eyes.
“I have booked a table at a restaurant and we should get ready to leave.” he says.
So they do 💖
It is remarkable how a severe crisis can bring emotions back to life with renewed strength.
Foundry Cove in Willow Creek
In Willow Creek, Allan and Alice have just returned from work.
“Do you like your new furniture?” Allan asks kindly.
Allan has received a promotion and the salary increase has meant that Alice has received some funds for a rebuild.
“I love them Allan! They are so beautiful and decorating is so much fun!”
“It’s good to hear you are satisfied,” he replies kindly.
“How does my big strong boy behave today?” he asks.
“Big and heavy is an accurate description … I can not understand that I am still missing a third of the pregnancy,” Alice replies with a sigh.
Allan looks at her with a proud face.
His next action makes her feel so loved and appreciated.
“We are known for getting big healthy boys in my family.” Allan says proudly.
“It could be a girl.” says Alice.
“In my lineage, we have only bred boys for many generations.” Allan answers.
“When we grow up, it is our duty to find a woman who can give birth to healthy boys who grow up to be strong masculine men. It is our dominant genes that have created that legacy.”
“A girl is completely out of the question!” he says at the end.
Late afternoon in Oasis Springs
The restaurant has just opened when they arrive at their destination.
Despite the barren surroundings, the place is pretty famous.
“Are you ready?” Martin asks cheerfully.
Tusnelda can feel that he has really looked forward to this date.
It makes her a little ashamed of all the times she ignored his invitation before.
Martin approaches the hostess to announce their arrival.
Tusnelda has never visited a restaurant where she can not choose her own table and she goes in advance to find a good seat.
Luckily, Martin manages to slow her down.
The hostess kindly asks them to come with her to their table
“The restaurant has no other visitors so what’s the point of that comedy?” Tusnelda asks.
Martin does not respond immediately as he is busy observing the menu.
Tusnelda notices that the hostess is staring at them.
She feels observed and valued.
“What am I doing wrong?” she asks uncertainly.
“Just relax.” says Martin, in an attempt to reassure her.
“Here you are the queen and it’s the hostess’s job to keep an eye on we are not missing anything.”
Martin looks at Tusnelda who is sitting stiffly in her seat. Has she really never been to a restaurant before?
“You are perfect exactly as you are,” he adds calmly.
The waiter approaches their table to hear if they are ready to order.
They choose to order the chef’s recommendation and two glasses of sparkling fruit juice.
The chef immediately starts with their order.
The thought of a baby girl has apparently turned Allan completely off.
Now he stands as often before, beating angrily at his punching bag.
Alice can make him so furious with all her stupid waffling.
Alice seeks him out to appease him …. they have had almost no conflicts since she announced her pregnancy.
“I’m sorry Allan, I did not want to upset you….I did not think…, ” she says kindly.
“It’s just the biggest flaw in your personality,” Allan replies angrily…. “You act on your impulses without thinking about the consequences even if you know it makes me furious.”
“When do you learn from your mistakes Alice?….. You should go inside and think about how to treat your husband with respect.”
If anyone thinks they saw Rasmus running past the house just before then they are absolutely right.
If they think he fortunately did not see Alice an Allan they are wrong.
He saw them.
The devastating feeling of sadness hits him completely unexpected.
He has moved on in his life now … he thought.
Allan has decided to patrol the area.
He tells her, he needs some space, away from her thoughtless nonsense.
Alice looks pretty relieved when he disappears.
Rasmus sees it all in the distance hidden behind a large tree.
Alice finds a novel but she can’t really concentrate on the reading. It’s so hard for her to predict when she’s stepping over the border. Is she really that stupid and blind?
She is in her second trimester and she can feel the weight of the baby in her back. She’s sure it’s gonna be a big kid….
Now she prays for the birth of a baby boy.
She gets up to collect some dishes.
Maybe Allan will come to terms with a girl once he sees the baby?
There is no need to indulge in sorrows in advance.
After all, life has many joys and she loves their new furniture and the new décor. Now she is looking forward to starting decorating the baby’s room.
Rasmus has continued his run but an invisible force makes him turn around … even though he knows he should not.
It is as if the instincts of his body try to drown out his common sense.
Now he stands hesitantly, staring at the house.
He knows she’s home alone right now. It would be so easy to go and ring the doorbell.
His longing fantasies try to convince him that she will receive him with open arms and everything will be as wonderful as before.
He anyway realizes that it just will make his pain grow.
With a deep sigh, he lets reason win and he runs past her house.
She has chosen her villain man and it even looked like they were expecting a child together.
He should not mourn anymore.
He has so many new friends and tomorrow he is going to meet Jonna at the cafe. She might be able to help him understand the joys of literature.
He has now found his way to the Harbor Quarter Gym in Windenburg.
He will search for Don and the other members of the sports team. He knows they will help him on better thoughts.
We return to the restaurant where more guests have finally arrived.
Martin and Tusnelda have just received their serving.
It smells heavenly.
“Thank you, we have everything we need.” Martin says to the waiter.
“What do you think Tusnelda?”
“I think it looks delicious,” she replies.
“It smells delicious.” Martin says.
Martin watches Tusnelda while she drinks.
There is so much they need to talk about and now none of them can figure out where to start.
The setting of the restaurant is fine and the atmosphere is relaxed, but now Martin is in doubt whether it is the right place.
Maybe he should have ordered wine for the meal or another strong drink to loosen them up?
At the next table, a couple has started a discussion and now the woman gets up.
“She seems pretty weird.” whispers Tusnelda.
Now the man gets up and leaves.
“Regarding weird …” Tusnelda begins.
“I had some very strange dreams on Sixam … A part of it was pretty scary ….”
“… but in my dreams I saw a wonderful glowing tree and I realized you are that tree Martin.”
“Do you call me a stiff and inflexible wooden man?” he asks surprised.
“No, that’s not what I mean,” Tusnelda replies.
When she got home early this morning, everything had seemed so obvious. How can it be so hard for her to explain?
“In that case, I will take the comparison with a tree as a compliment,” Martin replies with a laugh.
“This is delicious … you should taste the food, Tusnelda!” he continues unchallenged.
Tusnelda looks at him thoughtfully. She’s not quite sure if he’s teasing or if he received her declaration of love.
At the Harbor Quarter Gym in Windenburg
As Rasmus expects, his friends listen attentive to his concerns.
“I was sure I had moved on ….. and yet it felt like all the air was being pushed out of my lungs when I saw her.” he says in despair.
“That’s the kind of power women have over us,” Don says kindly. “You must learn to take them less seriously.”
Rasmus is not sure Don has ever taken a woman seriously, so how can he know?
“I don’t get you man! You’re too stuck in the past,” Don says….. “You should live more in the present and seize the opportunities that arise.”
“If you encourage me to take advantage of random female one-time relationships again, then no thanks for your advice.” Rasmus answers angrily.
“It’s not everything that comes easy that needs to be of poor quality,” Don replies with a laugh.
“You are not funny Don! Now I feel the urge to beat a punching bag,” Rasmus says with a sigh.
“I think you should stay at the weight machine. I can be your mentor.” says Don.
Rasmus only answers him with a grunt.
Although he can not always follow Don, he greatly appreciates his friendship.
It will be the weight machine ones again.
There is actually a reason Don thinks it’s smartest to keep Rasmus away from the punching bags.
Fortunately, Rasmus is too preoccupied with his own gloomy thoughts to notice what’s going on outside of himself right now.
Rasmus is sitting at the weight machine struggling with the barbell.
What the heck happened to his mentor?
Don has, as usual, been distracted from his venture.
It seems that Clara has once again fallen into old habits.
“Hi Don! You look so hansom in that top.” she flirts.
“I hope you are not angry I left you at the museum,” she continues.
“Of course I’m not angry Clara! You can always call if you want to go to the museum again, then I’m ready for you.”
Rasmus has grown tired of the barbell and tired of waiting for Don.
Now he is trying to lure Marcus out to a bar.
“I could use a drink, what do you say Marcus?”
“I think I can drink a protein drink for the company’s sake. It does not affect my training” Marcus replies
Don has finally found Rasmus after tearing himself free of Clara’s feminine charm.
“What do you think of a drink with the group?” asks Rasmus.
“I agree with Marcus. I’m a little worried about your penchant for nectar, so a protein drink would be an excellent choice.” Don answers.
A single protein drink can not hurt and then Don has probably forgotten all about him, if he knows him right, Rasmus thinks.
Soon the whole sports club is gathered together and an agreement is made.
This evening the sports club ends their training at the nightclub The Narwhal Arms in Windenburg and this is where we end the day’s chapter.
I should not be able to guarantee that the waiter is in the process of making protein drinks, but we will see in the next chapter.
Author’s note: I know this patchwork of separate actions leaves several unanswered questions and incomplete events. There is enough to tackle, but it will have to wait for now.
In today’s chapter, Martin invites Tusnelda to a renowned Italian restaurant.
The restaurant is built by Kathi1304 and can be found in the gallery.
This was such an enjoyable chapter! I really love seeing everything that’s going on with all of them. You portray their interior states so well.
Thank you cathytea ❤
Rasmus seems quite smitten with Jonna! It’s great to make an effort to try the things that your romantic interest likes to do. Books don’t seem to gel with Rasmus well, though. I hope he doesn’t force himself. Or maybe it just takes some time to get into?
I love the new look for the shop! The first thing that jumped to my mind was the inside of a grassy forest, too. Ove and the aliens did a fantastic job there. Including the Sixam part.
Awww, I remember Trix being so jealous and angry and hissy towards Martin. How much things have changed. They’re a loving family now.
Rasmus has turned really toned! His arms are muscular, he lost a ton of weight and he’s in really good shape. He was able to turn off his thoughts of Blue so easily, too. I’m glad to see how much he’s healed and how well he is doing for himself <3 He even seems to be in a better spot mentally than before he met Blue. I remember him being dreadfully lonely. But now he has friends, his gym buddies, and even a new romantic interest. Life is looking up for Rasmus!
Heh, getting ready to leave for a restaurant by having fun in the shower? xD They really do like their fun. It’s true that there’s no better way of making someone appreciate what they have than almost having them lose it. Martin and Tusnelda both have a newfound appreciation for each other.
Ugh, I thought I would breeze through this chapter with no anger at all but nope. Allan, you stupid potato. Only boys and strong dominant genes and- gah, can I just chuck a potato at his head now? Aw man, if the child is born as a girl, is he going to reject it regardless of whose child it is? Would that make him revert right back to his previous abusive self? =(
Wha- stupid waffling?! By mentioning that the kid could be a girl?! What part of that is stupid waffling, you moronic, backwards-baseball-hat-wearing simpleton of a-
Calm. I’m calm. Caaaaaaalm.
Not calm. And he’s blaming her for his anger problem again, too. Definitely not calm. Gaaaah! And she didn’t do anything! She just said it could be a girl, you absolute bloody… *angry swearing noises*
Oh, Rasmus. Good on him for not getting sucked back into that mess, but that still has to hurt =I I’m glad that Don managed to distract him/keep him away from Allan. If he’d seen him, he might have gotten sucked into a fight, and I’m pretty sure that Rasmus cannot beat Allan. Though, he does have the whole sports club to back him up. Something tells me that Marcus and Don would not sit quietly while their friend is being hurt.
It’s always so entertaining to read your reactions and I fully understand your anger over Allan. I have not bothered to make him sympathetic. Unfortunately, his attitudes and his tendency to blame others for his behavior are not unknown. That’s probably why I enjoy exhibiting him. I have met some Allans in my life 😈
I do not have the great patience to get started on larger constructions but I really enjoyed doing that remodeling of the store 😀
The scene with the four cats was so surprising and entertaining. I took a whole lot of pictures of their meeting ❤
Rasmus has really come a long way, even though it put him back a bit to see Blue alive. He will get through it with the help of friends. I’m sure Don and Marcus will defend him.
Literature and art do not really interest Rasmus. Will he learn to appreciate it? Time will tell.
I know a lot happened in this chapter, it was gripping to read and gave me many thoughts I wanted to comment on. But here I am, at the end, and only one of those thoughts remains:
Allan is a dick.
I fully agree 😆