The Terrible Metamorphosis of K. Tomishekmann
I received an overwhelming response from my "A Week in the Life of The Sims 2" piece chronicling the exploits of Marduk the Flayer and his unfortunate fiancÚ. Many readers asked me to produce a follow-up piece continuing Marduk's bold journey in our dimension. Rather than awakening Marduk from his epoch-spanning slumber I thought it might be more interesting to visit with another fine denizen of The Sims 2. With that in mind I offer you the entire life and tragic tale, from beginning to end, of K. Tomishekmann.
Not a good person in any way. In fact, barely rates as a person.
If all of God's creatures are beautiful, then K. Tomishekmann was beautiful. By any other criteria he was an inhuman monster of flesh and spirit. His brow protruded from his face like the unadorned prow of a freight vessel, hydrocephalic and sharply angled, a rim of bone beneath which his eyes completely disappeared. Matching his forehead in freakish scale, his perpetually charcoal colored lips concealed twin curves of clean white teeth. K. was tall, taller than any in Strangetown by at least two feet, and his body was stretched and extended by the forces of a creator apathetic to the harm such an injustice would cause a man.
K. Tomishekmann's soul and mind were perpetually shadowed. Whether it was symmetry to match them with his disfigured form or a result of the hardships derived from this body is not for me to say. K. was not fond of people. He did not seek friends nor interact well with acquaintances. He kept to himself and pursued only knowledge, for its embrace did not risk the cruel sting of rejection.
As steward of K. Tomishekmann's pitiful life I set about constructing him a house that I felt would match his personality. A beautiful home would seem to mock his ugliness and a simple home would prove inadequate to contain his genius. K. needed a challenge for his intellect; something to keep all of his neurons firing. For K.'s homestead I took inspiration from Daedalus, who constructed a labyrinth for King Minos of Crete to contain the dreaded Minotaur. K. Tomishekmann would become that minotaur, roaming the halls of his house in search of knowledge rather than human sacrifices.
The walls were bare inside of this maze and each branching path wound and turned in on itself several times before coming to one of the rooms scattered around the maze. There was a bathroom for ablutions and cleansing, a kitchen with a solid terrain of fluorescent lamps on the ceiling, a Spartan bedroom with a recessed "knowledge nook", a dining room, and an economical Zen garden consisting of a ficus, two chairs, and a toddler's portable toilet.
Thank you for bein' a friend, da-da-da-dun!
No matter where you were headed in the house or where your point of origin was you would be confronted with a minimum travel time of an hour. Getting from the front door all the way to the kitchen required K. to spend more than 90 minutes traveling. From the kitchen to the nearby Zen garden - only fifteen feet away - required just shy of an hour worth of walking. These travel times don't even include impediments like obstinate neighbors who block the way, cockroaches that demand attention, or the sudden and frequent outbreaks of fire in the house.
When K. arrived at his home his first reaction was one of curiosity. He seemed quite interested in the massive array of fluorescent lights in the kitchen and happily endured the difficult journey just to stare at them in wonder. When he tired of their flickering luminescence he made his way to the dining room where I had erected an artist's easel. K. set immediately to work painting his first masterpiece. For hours he toiled, and to my wonderment a beautiful form began to take shape, born entirely of the pigments, the canvas, and K.'s brilliant imagination. Unfortunately, visitors interrupted K.'s first creative pursuit and the burgeoning artist hurried to greet his first guests.
Things did not go well for K. outside. His visitors were unimpressed by K.'s brusque demeanor, many of them voicing their displeasure by making red minus symbols float out of their heads. After rejecting him they somehow felt it appropriate to charge into his maze and begin watching his television or defecating in his toilet. A pudgy black woman outside proved to be the sole exception to the mob mentality K. had encountered and he spent quite some time conversing with her. They seemed to become fast friends, but each time I encouraged K. to pursue a romantic relation with her he was rebuffed brutally.
His spirits dashed, K. headed inside to see where the rest of his guests had wandered off to. Immediately it became apparent that moving several people around the house at a time was nearly impossible. K. was frequently forced to stop and angrily stomp his feet as visitors barred his path in the claustrophobic hallway. When K. discovered a seedy looking blond haired man occupying his bathroom I instructed K. to send his visitors on their way. The gentle giant had needs, and as long as the guests were contributing to impenetrable gridlock these needs could not be tended to.
Once K. had scared off the guests he headed into the kitchen and prepared a delicious TV dinner. This process went without a hitch, although in the end it proved ultimately futile as the amount of "hunger" K. regained from eating was scarcely more than the amount he lost cooking, walking all the way to the dining room, eating, and then walking all the way back to the kitchen. K. began preparing a second meal, one that did not go as planned. The small toaster oven K. was using to cook his second TV dinner burst into flames. K. began to panic and as I struggled to order him to call the fire department the blaze spread around the kitchen. At last, K. managed to tear himself away from the sight of the fire long enough to call the fire department. Immediately following the phone call he returned to gawking and panicking over the fire, even as it spread further into the kitchen and threatened to set K. himself ablaze.
Then the worst happened; K. caught himself on fire. Luckily this was almost 90 minutes after he had called the fire fighters and they had almost finished navigating the labyrinth by that point. They burst into the room and began extinguishing K. and his threatened home. By this point K.'s happiness ratings were in the gutter. He had nearly died - hell, his greatest aspiration had changed to "Be Saved From Death" - and as I tried to calm him and restore order he collapsed in the hallway ranting madly. A magical psychiatrist appeared and examined K. This briefly fortified his mood but K. was more desperately hungry than ever.
It's a living thing, Brian. It breathes, it eats, and it hates.
Somehow during the night's festivities of burning down half the kitchen K. had picked up some cooking skill and could whip up a batch of macaroni and cheese. His freakish limbs were not well suited for mixing mac & cheese, but he persevered, and enjoyed a steaming bowl of pasta that took care of almost half of his hunger needs. Once he was finished dining I urged him off to bed to try to sleep off the horrors of day one.
Because K. was so filthy, so tired, and his bed was so shitty he managed to sleep through the majority of the following day. When he awoke he had a number of needs-based emergencies that had him spending hours rushing through the labyrinth trying not to piss his pants. K. spent so long dealing with things like running across the house to get to the bathroom before he pisses his pants and running across the house to sit down and watch TV before he starts crying every two seconds that he neglected his social interactions. This summoned the dreaded Social Bunny, a hideous-looking teleporting rabbit furry with a ton of available interactions.
K. reacted to its presence much as you or I might and immediately attacked it. A brutal fight ensued during the course of which the rabbit would phase its fist repeatedly into K.'s chest, possibly trying to stop his heart from beating. K. survived but unfortunately so did the Social Bunny. Still wary, K. tried to reconcile things with the beast, even managing a bit of friendly interaction. After this K. took a few steps away and began to clutch his head and weep. As if to mock K.'s dire position the Social Bunny began crying too. K. immediately attacked it again. K. and the Social Bunny did ultimately reconcile somewhat. Just enough to let me send the poor freak to bed once again without fearing for his life.
The horror...the horror.
K. awoke the next morning with a face full of stubble and a bad attitude. Because K. had not yet managed to even look for a job he did not have enough money to hire a maid. Since he didn't have a maid his house had become inundated in filth. The kitchen still featured a prominent "charred rubble" motif and the halls of the labyrinth were strewn with garbage and urine. Making matters worse, the garbage pile nearest the kitchen had conjured a growing swarm of cockroaches that was seriously upsetting K. I sent him to the Zen garden to meditate, but no matter how much chi he focused on the ficus he just could not get his mind off those damn roaches.
In a pique of rage K. stalked down the hallway and confronted the roaches with two feet of justice. As he dashed their scurrying lives onto the bare floor something strange began to happen. Each roach he crushed seemed to be somehow transforming K. He was lost in his frenzy of killing, but there was no denying that K. was getting smaller by the second. Before he even had a chance to finish off the insect plague he was barely more than a head resting on a pair of shoes.
The transformation complete, K. began to wander around his home, seeing the world through his new insect-like eyes. He obviously saw the cockroaches as being responsible for his new predicament, and nothing I could do could persuade him otherwise. I tried to set him to work performing menial tasks like paying the bills. I tried to get him to meditate or take a nap. It was no use, he was obsessed with the roaches, to the point of ignoring all of his needs. Shortly after nightfall, with K. howling for food and the toilet, the poor freak collapsed in the Zen garden. Death appeared to carry his soul mercifully away to whatever terrible afterlife awaits hateful monstrous boat-heads.
Before K. shuffled off this mortal coil I managed to capture a bit of his last-stage metamorphosis on video. Watch as he scurries and flops hideously down the narrow corridors of the labyrinth. It would be almost merry if it weren't so stomach churning. If you're having trouble getting the video working, you can download the correct codec from on2.com. There is no sound on this video.