The Caliente Affairs, Volume One

Meet Dina and Nina Caliente, twenty-something identical twin sisters who have moved back to their little hometown of Pleasantview. Not everyone in town is happy to see the twins back, and it's not long before the two are causing trouble and uprooting everybody's pleasant life.


10. Out Alone

Dirk called Meadow that Saturday and invited her over to hang. When she arrived she seemed happy, which made his job so much harder. “So, what was so important that you just couldn’t wait until Monday to tell me?” She asked. Dirk decided he’d kept the truth to himself for far too long and wanted to just get everything out in the open.
“It’s about Alex.”
“Oh yeah, how was it, having dinner with your new UNCLE?!” Meadow joked. Dirk cringed, he never before realised that if his dad and Cassandra got married, Alex would become his step-uncle.
“It was... really bad.”
“Oh come on and just face it! Cassandra’s going to be your new mum and then you’re going to be related to Alex which will eventually mean that I’ll become your Great-Step-Aunt or something like that.” Meadow thought, becoming confused at the amount of connections everyone in Pleasantview had.
“I wouldn’t count on you and Alex getting married, Meadow, there’s something I have to tell you.” Dirk tried to soften the blow of his heart-breaking news.
“Let me guess, you’ve finally come to your senses and realised that it was me you wanted all those years ago and not Lilith? Well I’m sorry, you made your choice and I guess you choiced wrong. I’m with Alex and you’re with nobody and that’s the way it’s gonna be forever.” Dirk felt confused, he never remembered choosing Lilith over Meadow. Had he been with so many girls that he was beginning to forget which ones he had dated and which he hadn’t?
“When didn’t I choose you?” Dirk asked.
“What? Back when you first started to date Lilith you and I were great friends and you said,wouldn’t it be fun if we kissed? And I said...” Dirk tried to tune out Meadow’s annoying voice, her ego was obviously feeling so bruised that she felt the only way to heal it was to recite from one of her many journal entries - most of which contained Dirk’s name, he confidently assumed. “...I went to school the next day and you acted like nothing had happened and it killed me so much inside that all I could do was try and forget it had ever happened so that’s what I did and it eventually became another small memory trapped away at the back of my head... but then that’s you all over, Dirk, isn’t it - small!” Dirk opened his mouth wide, a grin spreading across Meadow’s face. Lilith must have been spreading rumours at school too. Consumed with anger, he forgot all about sensitivity and hit Meadow straight between the eyes with his confession.
“Meadow, Alex is Gay! Yeah! AND he tried to kiss me.” His smug grin lasted only one-tenth of a second, as he realised just what he had said. Meadow looked kind of like a lost puppy, Dirk thought. He expected her to deny it, but instead she walked out of the door. Not wanting to let her go before he explained things, Dirk ran after her.
“Wait! Aren’t you going to say anything?” Dirk asked.
“Are you lying?” She asked. Dirk shook his head.
“You don’t sound surprised.”
“Alex is my best friend. How could I not...” Meadow began, before choking back the tears. Dirk didn’t feel any better - maybe Orlando wasn’t as much of an expert as he thought.
“I shouldn’t have told you.” He said.
“You think?!” Meadow shot back, but she didn’t have the energy to feel angry, she just felt... alone. Unsure if he would be forced away, Dirk went to hug his friend. Wrapping her arms around him, Meadow tried not to burst into tears. She sort of felt like she should be mad at Dirk, but she realised that she shouldn’t push away a friend like him. Underneath his sexist attitude and tough-guy exterior was a kind person that Meadow had once hoped to get to know better. But now she didn’t know what kind of guy would want to get to know her better, especially if word got out that she was a girl who turned their boyfriend gay. “You haven’t told anyone else have you?” Meadow asked Dirk.
“No, I would never do that to you. I wanted to tell you because I didn’t want to see you get hurt.”
“I understand why you told me, I just wish I knew why HE didn’t.”
“You have to understand, I don’t think Alex felt guilty about what he did. In fact, I think he felt surprised I turned him down. He told me he wasn’t sure how he felt about you. Did you ever get that impression?”
“No! God, why can’t he be honest?” Meadow said feeling angry. Not saying much of a goodbye, she left Dirk’s porch and passed Cassandra on the way out. Turning back, Meadow stared at Cassandra with a scorned glare, but Cassandra couldn’t understand why. As Dirk went inside, he passed Darren.
“Big celebration tonight, don’t make any plans.” He told his son.
“Don’t worry, I won’t.” Dirk said out loud. I don’t think anyone will ever want to go out with me again, he thought.
Darren went to greet his love but she stopped him. “Why was your son hugging my brother’s girlfriend? I’ve stood back so far and said nothing about his cavalier attitude, but I draw the line at him going after my brother’s girlfriend.”
“What? No! I... just think those two are friends. I mean, I know they’re only friends. Dirk wouldn’t want to steal Alex’s girlfriend. He’s a good guy, really. Besides, what makes you think Alex’s girlfriend would even cheat on him?” Darren managed to deflect all of Cassandra’s accusations away from him and turn them back against herself.
“I never said that! I think those teenagers have enough going on in their lives without us causing more gossip. Now, what was it you wanted to show me?” Darren smiled, as he led Cassandra inside and up the stairs. “I hope you didn’t ask me over just so you and I would...” Cassandra started, confused at why she was being taken upstairs.
“Cassandra! Did you ever stop to think that I enjoy your company and value your opinion? I wanted to share with you my great news.” Darren said, stopping in front of his easel. “I just sold three of my paintings for over one-thousand simoleons. Isn’t that great?” Darren asked, showing Cassandra his works of art.
“Darren, that’s unbelievable!” Cassandra yelled excitedly, rushing to hug her fiancé.
“I think this might be the start of something big, Cassandra.” Darren thought out loud. “The guy even wanted my painting of Mortimer. I figure that must mean that he thinks I’m so good that people will buy anything I paint.” Darren assumed. Cassandra wondered if Darren had understood the buyer correctly.
“Darren, he did buy your paintings exclusively didn’t he?”
“What do you mean?” Darren wondered.
“Well, it sounds to me like he might just go and auction off your paintings for even more money than he gave you.” Cassandra shared her thoughts, hoping that Darren wouldn’t be offended.
“You think?” Darren asked, sounding concerned.
“I’m afraid it sounds that way.” Cassandra sighed, but Darren’s smile got even wider.
“Then that means even more people will know about my work. You just wait and see, Cassandra, this is going to be it. Pretty soon, I’ll be selling paintings for big simoleons every week. I could even get Dirk to build me a website so I can sell them direct. Do you know what this means?” Darren asked, picking Cassandra up and spinning her around. Cassandra laughed, catching the excitement off of Darren.
“We can finally get married.” Cassandra said, assuming that’s what Darren meant. Darren put his fiancée down and paused.
“Oh, yeah. I didn’t think of that, I guess we’ll have enough money by next year to afford a decent wedding.” Darren answered honestly. Cassandra looked at him confused.
“Next year? I meant now, Darren, I thought you and I were going to get married as soon as possible. I mean, we have the money. What are we waiting for?” Cassandra asked him.
“Honey, I can’t put my life wants before those of my son.” Darren confessed.
“Excuse me?” Cassandra asked, feeling confused.
“This money’s for Dirk. I can finally afford to put him through college now, even without a scholarship.” Cassandra’s hopes of a beautiful Christmas wedding were shattered. She tried to hide her disappointment, as she congratulated Darren one more time.
“That’s great. He’ll really appreciate that.” Cassandra said through gritted teeth. He had better, Cassandra thought, and looked at the painting of her father, wondering if he’d ever get to see her walk down the aisle.


It was a quarter-to-three on Saturday when Alex found a surprise waiting for him in the form of his girlfriend Meadow. He brought her up to his new bedroom in the attic. He realised, it was the first time he’d been alone with a girl in his new room... or in any of his rooms. Maybe he should do something special. “You still haven’t told me why you wanted to come up.” Alex was surprised at how little his chatterbox of a girlfriend was saying.
“We needed to be alone.” Meadow turned to look out of the window. Alex closed the door and went up behind Meadow, he wrapped his arms around her but she pulled away.
“Oh! You said you wanted to be alone, I just thought...” Alex was confused at why Meadow looked as if she had just been violated.
“I wanted to talk with you.” Meadow said, with a slight anger in the tone of her voice.
“What’s up?” Alex asked, completely unaware of her earlier conversation with Dirk.
“I really think it’s best if we break up.” Meadow quickly blurted out.
“Whoa, where did that come from? Are you unhappy about something?” Alex asked in shock.
“I could ask you the same question - but would I get an honest answer. You know, you have a real problem with honesty, Alexander Goth. And I thought me, of all people, would have been the one person you could have been honest with. But to go behind my back and speak to, of all people, Dirk about your problems, was just a kick in the guts.”
“You... you’ve spoken to Dirk.” Alex asked, feeling his world begin to crack and break around him.
“We had quite an interesting conversation about what you and him got up to during his visit here.”
“Let me explain.” Alex interrupted, trying to save some of the pieces that were falling down from his perfectly constructed world.
“You don’t need to explain anything. You’re gay, that’s all that matters.” Meadow shot at him.
“I’m not gay.” Alex looked away from Meadow’s judging eyes.
“You could at least have the decency to look at me when you’re lying. God, why are even lying to me – TO ME, Alexander... I thought I was your best friend.” Meadow said.
“You are my best friend - you’re my girlfriend!” Alex felt a lump beginning to form in his throat and he held back the tears.
“I am not your girlfriend.” She said.
“I don’t even think I can be your friend anymore.” Meadow added.
“I’m sorry!” Alex cried.
“I don’t want you to be sorry, I just want you to be honest.” Meadow told him.
“I... I can’t.” Alex felt ashamed at what he was being asked to confess.
“No-one dislikes you more than I do right now, and if you can’t even be honest to me, then what hope do you have of ever coming out to the people who supposedly love you.” Alex turned to face Meadow and sighed.
“You’re right. I’m gay, and they’re gonna feel exactly the same way as you do if they ever find out.” Alex let the tears fall down his face, as he confessed all to Meadow.
“Probably, but you can’t keep on pretending. I won’t let you.”
“No! Please, Meadow, don’t tell anyone.”
“Why shouldn’t I? Humiliate you, just like you humiliated me. I think that’s justice.” Meadow vindictively sneered at Alex.
“That’s not you, the Meadow I almost fell in love wouldn’t do that.”
“But you didn’t fall in love with me! And I think your judge of character is pretty crappy at the moment.” Meadow said, referring to Alex’s feelings towards Dirk. “However, if you had have kissed Dirk, would you have even been honest with me?” She hypothetically suggested. For the first time, Alex thought about what his actions could have lead to. Kissing Dirk would have meant more to him than kissing Meadow, but he doubted even that would have lead him to tell Meadow he was gay.
“I can’t say for sure. All I know is, I never wanted to hurt you. What I did was stupid.” Alex apologised.
“It was stupid. I imagine coming out isn’t something you want to go through alone.” Meadow said. “You should have thought about that before you went behind my back.” Meadow added before leaving Alex. She wanted nothing more to do with him now he’d admitted he was gay. Alex hoped she wouldn’t tell anyone, but he couldn’t be sure. And apparently, Dirk was opening up about what had happened, so it was only a matter of time. However, he realised if the fallout from the Dirk kiss had taught him anything, it was that he needed to own up to his actions. And that meant there was one person he needed to tell in private, before word got around at school that he was gay – before he began the battle of coming out to his family. Because Meadow was right about one thing: he couldn’t face the thought of being outed with no-one on his side.


Arriving back from the clinic, Dina got out of the taxicab and sighed. Despite making the appointment yesterday, she still couldn’t decide what she wanted to do regarding her pregnancy. It wasn't until she was actually sitting in the waiting room, about to go through with it, that she settled on a final decision. Of course, she wanted more time... but, walking through the front door of her house and seeing all of its members gathered at the dining table, she knew now her time was up. “Why are you all sitting there?” She asked.
“Mortimer’s got something he wants to discuss with us.” Nina replied.
“Honey, what’s this about?” Dina worriedly asked, sitting down next to him.
“I suppose you’ve been wondering what has been bothering me lately and where I’ve been travelling off to.” He began.
“I’m sorry if I've been overreacting lately.” Dina apologised, knowing that Mortimers actions had been the last thing on her mind.
“It’s quite alright, you do have reason to be suspicious. I’ve been keeping things from you, but not anymore.” Mortimer began. He turned to face Dina and smiled. “I’ve been negotiating a lot, and I’ve managed to buy a wonderful property on the Pleasantview shore. I want me, you, and Alex to move-out and live there.” He said. The room was silent. Dina was in complete shock. She had not expected that, she was speechless.
“I think that’s a great idea, Mortimer.” Nina was the first to speak. Dina was hurt at her sister’s positive reaction, but realised they hadn’t spoken since Nina found out about Dina’s thoughts of terminating her pregnancy. “We all know how weird things have been with everyone living here. I think having a place of your own will be good for... the future.” Nina sighed, assuming that Dina was no longer with child, having not seen anything of her sister since yesterday.
“So, you want me to move out?” Dina asked.
“We can’t live together forever. With all things considered, maybe this will be for the best.” Nina sighed and looked away from her sister. Dina couldn’t believe her own sister was abandoning her. She had threatened to, but Dina never thought she’d go through with it.
“I know that we’ve keeping you and Alex out of the loop on most things, and I’m sorry.” Nina told Mortimer. “I hope we didn’t appear to be rude. It’s just me and Don are...”
“...Going through a tough time.” Don interrupted. “I’m sorry we didn’t tell you all before but... Nina and I are expecting a baby.” Don said. Nina looked over in shock, and a small smile broke out across her face. He had had trouble coming to terms with Nina getting pregnant so soon into their relationship, but now she thought he was finally ready to accept that he was going to become a father.
“Well, congratulations. I suppose my news is welcome then, you two will be able to have the house ready for your new family.” Mortimer smiled. Dina was alarmed, she was being driven out of her own home one-by-one. Surely Alexander would object to moving out, Dina thought. “I trust you don’t mind moving so soon again, Alexander?” Mortimer asked. Alex held back his true feelings. It was just a few hours ago that he had come to terms with being gay, and contemplated telling his family. Now his so-called family was being torn apart. He could feel himself fading into the background once again.
“Oh, I guess. But, I mean, Don just spent all that time painting my new room, and now I’m leaving?” Alex replied. “I feel a bit guilty.” He added.
“Don’t bother, Alex, that room needed painting and I’m sure it won’t go unused. Besides, you’re family now, and we’ll need it if you ever come over to stay.” Don told him. “Which you’re all more than welcome too, anytime.” Alex gazed up at Don. Initially, he had wanted so much to hate him for cheating on his sister, but he couldn’t help but feel so close to him right now. He hoped Don wasn’t kidding about that offer. He thought about coming out to his dad, and knew that he just might be kicked out of his new home. Don was the first person he came to about his feelings, and he had told him back then that he wouldn’t be annoyed or ashamed if Alex did turn out to be gay.
“Thank you.” Alex said. Don smiled, assuming he was just being thanked for what he had said, but Alex was thanking him for so much more than that.
“It’s alright. So when will you be moving out?” Don asked.
“The removal van won’t be here until tomorrow, but most of the furniture there is brand new, so I thought we’d leave tonight.” Mortimer smiled at how brilliantly everyone was taking the news. Or had he spoken to soon?
“Tonight!?” Dina yelled surprised. “I’m sorry, I’ve sat back and watched quietly up until now, but I have to speak my mind. What if I don’t want to move? You’ve made this huge decision without even consulting me, and I just...” Dina paused and saw that all eyes were on her. “I’m shocked. That’s all! It’s... shocking.” Dina stopped her true feelings from pouring out, knowing that no-one would really care. And she realised that this was what the house had been like for a while. It was divided, and now Mortimer was just doing the honest thing and splitting up the separate parts. But it was Dina who had to be split down the middle. On the one half, she had her new family - her husband and a stepson. She had vowed to love Mortimer in front of God, and take in his family as her own (well, everyone in his family except Cassandra). She wanted to honour those vows, but on the other hand, there was Don and Nina... Her sister; her other half. She wasn’t just a sister, she was her twin. No-one but Nina knew how Dina was feeling sometimes. More so than ever now she had shared her unfaithful secret with her. And Don was a friend who she’d known for what felt like forever. He was once her lover, and part of her still loved him. How could she be expected to just leave one part of her life behind like that? She had already made one big decision today, and wasn’t capable of making another one. But she knew she didn’t have to; she was being moved out and both parts knew it was for the best. Nina and Don could prepare for their new family, and Dina could finally commit to Mortimer completely. It all sounded good in theory, but Dina knew that things would never be so simple.


Cassandra was still over at Darren’s house, and wasn’t leaving until she could convince Dirk into agreeing that his dad’s money would benefit her future far more than his. “So, has your dad shared with you his plans for the big fortune he’s about to make?”
“He sure has. Man, I never thought I’d be able to get through college without keeping my part-time job or something like that. Heck, I might even be able to rent a place of my own.” Dirk imagined.
Cassandra’s bitterness was scratching away inside, eager to be let out. But she calmly replied, “that would be fantastic. And you seem to be handling the pressure really well.”
Dirk’s happiness was cut short, just as Cassandra had hoped. “Pressure?”
“Oh, well, I know that if I were in your position, having all of my father’s money put into my education, I’d crack knowing that I could easily end up flunking or something. I mean, University is hard work. But I’m sure you don’t have to worry about that, you’re a bright kid.” Cassandra said, trying to sound genuinely supportive of Darren’s wishes. She saw Dirk suddenly realising that not everything about this was as great as he first thought.
“Well, I want to see what it’s like in the dorms anyway. And I’m sure they’ve got lots of ways to help you get good grades. You know, like study groups and the library. College has changed a lot since you were there.” Dirk said as Cassandra choked on her food in astonishment. “Er, I didn’t mean that you were old or anything. Just that, we’ve got stuff like the net and mobile phones now.”
“For your information, had I not dropped out to look after my father and brother, I would’ve been getting ready to take my masters!” Cassandra told Dirk, who was turning red again. “The establishment might have changed but the teaching standards are just as high as they’ve always been... Maybe even more so.” Cassandra told Dirk. “You just have to remember that there’s no pressure for you to do well. Even though all of your father’s money is going into your education - you can’t think about that. Just have fun.” Cassandra finished off her plan, hoping to have at least moved her wedding back up to Winter. Admiring her work, she imagined a beautiful Valentine’s Day ceremony would be on the cards now.
“Cassandra, you’re going to put the boy off of College if you keep going on about it.” Darren said, as he came downstairs. Cassandra hadn’t realised he had been in earshot of their conversation.
“I hadn’t finished, Darren. In fact, I was waiting for you to come and share your own great memories about College.” Cassandra said.
“Was it really that great?” Dirk asked his dad.
“You know that’s where I met your mother and fell in love?” Darren cast a soft glance at his son and Dirk smiled, before Cassandra cut the moment short.
And that’s where you fell in love with art!” Cassandra laughed, as Dirk half smiled and continued to listen to the two of them share their memories over dinner. Despite his initial feelings, the more he found out about Cassandra, the more he began to understand what his dad loved about her. He had always been reluctant to let Cassandra in, but now he had, he wasn’t sure if he ever wanted her to leave. Dirk had always been suspicious of the Goths, but now he realised that what seemed like suspicion was really just envy. He envied their expensive lifestyle, and to him, it seemed like they were so perfect - as if they weren’t human. But with Cassandra sharing more about her life with Dirk - and Alex practically coming out to him, he saw that they were just as normal as everyone else in town. And he saw how happy Cassandra made his dad. He’d even managed to mention Dirk’s mother, Darleen, without getting sad. In fact, Dirk now understood how he could fall in love with another woman yet still hold a place in his heart for his deceased wife. As he thought about his mother, he silently prayed for her to help him accept Cassandra like his father had. The pinging noise of an Instant Message pop-up on his computer distracted Dirk from his thoughts and he went over to see who was contacting him. It was Orlando, so Dirk sat down for a chat with his friend.

*Did U talk 2 that dudes girl?*
*All sorted! She was upset but didnt blame me*
*U feeling better then?*
*Loads. thanks 4 checking up on me - Ur advice was gr8*
*I know!*
*Ure gonna do gr8 in college*
*Speaking of college im inviting U 2a party 2nite - A COLLEGE PARTY*

Dirk had never been to a college party and wondered how on earth Orlando had managed to get himself invited.

*How did U score that invite?*
*Dont ask just read. Meet me @ the woodland park @ 11*
*Dude were talking COLLEGE GIRLS - 2 single n attractive guys like us would be nuts 2 turn this down. Its just what U need after all that gay crap was forced on 2U*
*LOL! What would college girls want with teens?*
*Were not goin2 say were teens dumbass! RU meeting me or what?*

Dirk turned to look at his dad and realised he’d said that he wanted the three of them to spend some time together. He couldn’t believe it, but he wanted to spend time with his Dad and Cassandra. Besides, he knew that Orlando would end up getting drunk and thrown out – or do something even worse!

*Cant, U go n have fun though*
*WHAT! Ure not coming*
*Dad n Cass want to spend time with me - Dad sold some paintings n were having a party 2*
*OOO Cassies there, can I cum 2 urs instead!*
*Dude ure sick, go try ure luck with the college girls - adios*

Not wanting to feel more guilty, Dirk logged off. Besides, he thought, it would take Orlando at least an hour to get ready! When he sat up, Darren was stood right behind him. “Don’t sneak up on me like that!”
“You’re not going to a college party.” Darren told his son. Dirk frowned that his dad had been reading the conversation over his shoulder. Then it hit him, what if he’d seen Orlando’s message about ‘gay crap. Panicking, Dirk tried to ease his dad’s accusing mind.
“I already said no. Don’t you trust me?”
“Well, you do do things that make me wonder if I can trust you. But I’m sorry for accusing you, I’m glad you made the right decision.” Dirk wanted to quickly rush off, but Darren stopped him. “I was wondering if you minded that I don’t plan to put all of the money I made from selling my paintings towards your education?” Darren admitted.
“No, it’s fine. I kind of feel better than way anyway. Why, what did you want to spend the rest of the money on?” Darren hesitated but Dirk understood what, or who it was he wanted to spend the money on. “It’s okay, I think you and Cassandra should save some for the wedding too.” Darren smiled, for the first time seeing that his son was beginning to accept his relationship.
“You do not know how happy I am to hear you say that.” Darren hugged his son, making Dirk laughed.
“Cut the emotional stuff dad, or else you’ll have none left for her.” Dirk joked, hinting at Cassandra upstairs.
“Hey now, just because Cassandra stays over, it doesn’t mean...” Dirk stopped his dad.
“Dad, it’s okay, I’m not a kid. I know what goes on and I’m fine with it. Besides, I think Cassandra is great, and you should be really proud of yourself.” As Dirk walked away, Darren called to him.
“I am proud... of you.” Darren felt like the luckiest person in Pleasantview, and hoped everyone could feel just a tenth of what he was feeling right now.


In all her time back here at her old childhood home, Dina had never lit the fireplace. She figured it was almost ceremonial – as Alex and Mortimer packed up a few things to take with them, Dina could only watch it burn. Why do I feel so cold inside when I’m so close to the flames, she asked herself. She knew of one reason, but decided to blame it on the sudden detachment from her sister. The obnoxiously loud horn of Mortimer's car shattered her thoughts, as Dina wiped away the tear that she had shed. What am I crying about? She couldn’t answer that. Everyone silently walked outside. Don helped Mortimer load the bags into the back of the car, and Alex found himself grabbing Don for a hug goodbye, before quickly jumping into the back seat so nobody saw his blushing cheeks. Dina smiled, and copied Alexander's emotions. She turned to hug her sister goodbye, but it was an empty hug. Nina avoided eye contact, and Dina felt like she deserved that. Sitting inside, Don ran up to the car door. “Don’t I get a hug?” He asked Dina.
“Goodbye, Don. Congratulations on your baby.” She glumly said, before shutting the door.
“Thanks. Goodbye.” Don was late to reply; confused at the lack of emotion the two sisters were showing. Something was being kept from him, and he didn’t like it. Don waved, but Dina just stared at nothing in particular. If only she could tap into herself and unlock some of the happiness that lay deep inside, then everyone wouldn’t be so sad. There really was no reason to be sad. It was a mutual parting of ways, and a decision which had just been unnecessarily prolonged. Dina knew that eventually she and everyone else would be happy about this, just... not right now. As the car drove off, Nina burst into tears and was comforted by Don. Nina thought about her sister’s feelings, as she cried. Some part of her knew what Dina was thinking about, but Nina disagreed. She knew that she could never be happy about this. It was destined to cause even more trouble for the Caliente sisters than before.

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