“Let’s go,” Bella finally pulled away from Don. “We are too close to escaping to end up back there.” Don walked up the stairs, Bella following. Fear had left him, replaced by despondency.The stairs led outside. Don looked around. It appeared as though they were in a cemetery. He continued on, not walking to look at the epitaphs on the headstones.They walked down a hill, following a gravel path. The sunlight was weak here, even though it was mid morning, the air misty and gray.
Bella was silent. They walked on, not seeming to have a plan, just trying to take in what had happened. Don began to wonder if this was some kind of trap. It seemed too convenient that they found a coffin with Cassandra’s epitaph. Something seemed wrong, but he wasn’t sure.
“Look,” Bella’s word broke the silence. Below them was a small village. Although it was now the middle of the day, not a single sim was out. “It’s like a ghost town,” Bella whispered. “Now what?”
Before Don could answer, his pocket vibrated. He reached his hand in and pulled out his device. How was he getting work instructions here?“Follow me,” Don said. They walked down a side street into the backyard of an old home. “There–we need to go there.” He showed Bella. “Dr. E’rnitage is in that building.”
“Who is he?” Bella asked.
“Well, he’s something of a myth. His nickname is the ‘mad scientist.’ He disappeared quite a long time ago, rumor has it, because he wanted to work in peace.” They walked around the side. “Dr. E’rnitage?”
A bald man with glasses and a beard wearing a lab coat motioned for them to come over. “Shhhh,” he said, “Don’t call me that. I’m Doctor Strange here, as in a medical doctor.” He lifted his glasses and whispered to Don. “It is I, L’Ernitage. This is a disguise,” he whispered. Don didn’t think a different white coat and pair of glasses was much of a disguise, but he wasn’t going to mention it.
“Call me George,” the scientist said, “and let’s get inside quickly. After you, lovely madame.”
“Things must be worse than I thought,” George told Bella. “If you S.I.M.S. agents are involved, it must be very, very bad.” George turned to Don. “What in the world are you doing here? And how in the world did you get here?”
Don shrugged his shoulders. “I honestly don’t know.” He explained everything, which to Don became more confusing the more explaining he did. George, on the other hand, seemed to think it made sense.
“Before I left FSL, I made sure that each TAD had a homing device should technicians find their way here. Think of it as a safety protocol. A few days ago, or maybe months,” George chuckled, “or years. Time doesn’t flow the same here.” He giggled. “Another technician showed up. You,” George looked at Bella, “remind me of her. I gave her instructions, and she hasn’t returned yet. Are you in disguise?”
Don’s mouth went dry. Bella spoke, croaking, “That was T-4684.” She described the candlelit room and told George she vowed revenge on Cassandra’s death.
“Well, that may be a problem,” George said. “She’s not exactly dead.”
Don almost jumped with excitement. “She’s alive! I will go back and bring her here!”
“Well, that may be a problem,” George said. “She’s not exactly alive.”
“What do you mean,” Bella stammered, “exactly?”
“Well, that may be a problem. I can’t exactly answer your question.”
[The lot used can be found in the Gallery; “VampireTudorhome” by UnusualPeach.]