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PostPosted: November 24th, 2019, 5:55 am 
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Insert 7: Oh, Brother!, by me.

11 – 12 August 2004: Kevin has an emotional afternoon before finally meeting his new brother.
Rated T

As promised, here is the second in a trilogy of "baby" stories, which is also the first in an overlapping trilogy of stories from me. Quite a few character dynamics will be explored in these, but it should come as no surprise that all three have Kevin/Oscar at their emotional core because (as everybody knows) their relationship is my emotional core.

This one is followed by an Extension, which is an excerpt from the very first adult story I ever wrote. It features Carl and Beth having a quick conversation about Kevin and Oscar "crossing the final frontier" as it were, and I felt it was relevant enough to the subject matter and feels of the main story to warrant a place alongside it on the website.

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Last edited by KevinsMensPyjamas on December 8th, 2019, 5:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: November 25th, 2019, 3:57 pm 
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KevinsMensPyjamas wrote:
Insert 7: Oh, Brother!, by me.

11 – 12 August 2004: Kevin has an emotional afternoon before finally meeting his new brother.
Rated T

As promised, here is the second in a trilogy of "baby" stories, which is also the first in an overlapping trilogy of stories from me. Quite a few character dynamics will be explored in these, but it should come as no surprise that all three have Kevin/Oscar at their emotional core because (as everybody knows) their relationship is my emotional core.

This one is followed by an Extension, which is an excerpt from the very first adult story I ever wrote. It features Carl and Beth having a quick conversation about Kevin and Oscar "crossing the final frontier" as it were, and I felt it was relevant enough to the subject matter and feels of the main story to warrant a place alongside it on the website.


Yet another one where I could see younger readers going "Why don't they just call on their cell phones or text each other?" :lol:

Quote:
'Hey, yeah! Why should I always be the one who has to make the effort? He could bring the whole family out here for a vacation – I bet they'd enjoy that.'

'Are you gonna suggest the idea to him?' Kevin asked.

'I might well,' said Oscar


Well, yeah, you need to have them visit to so your half sister and half brother can grudgingly fall in love, and that's not actually as creepy as it sounds! Hop to it!!! :twisted:

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PostPosted: November 27th, 2019, 10:13 am 
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In some ways, this story epitomises Carl's emotional journey from 'Rage' to this point and beyond, showing him in probably the best place he can be with Kevin (considering what's gone before) and being presented with the chance to build on his good work with the (as we may recall, unexpected) arrival of James. I don't think we can dislike Carl any longer for his raw feelings, shown in his initial reaction to seeing Kevin and Oscar kissing, as the part of himself he actually has control over ensures that Kevin knows nothing about it. I think Kevin reads too much into Carl's assumption that Oscar wants a lift home rather than anywhere else, but it's also an understandable reaction, given what he's been led to expect from such encounters. It was a very good idea to have that conversation in the car, to clear up any misunderstanding and allow both of them to keep on learning about each other.

Beth, of course, fulfils her usual role of saying mom stuff (and doing it too: birthing and then feeding a baby is the very epitome of mom stuff). Eagle-eyed Collinsverse enthusiasts will notice that James was delivered by the same midwife as Conchita, and they may wonder whether we have seen and heard the last of her. They may indeed wonder...

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PostPosted: November 28th, 2019, 6:13 am 
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I can't tell you how much less stressful I've found it writing a story set in 2004 where a young adult like Kevin might well not be weighed down with all kinds of electronic gadgets such as cell phones, than writing a story set in 2023 where a young adult doing something like using a payphone in a hospital (an act that seems as simple and everyday to me as breathing in and out) is actually an incredibly outdated idea, and an equally unlikely action for someone like James or Conchita as creating a series of cave paintings!

The inclusion of Hayden and Jessica's relationship in the Collinsverse is something I'm very excited about (as we'll be reminded in the very near future, coincidentally enough) but I feel I must warn you that if you're looking for the "grudgingly" aspect specifically, you're in the wrong universe. Their deep and fascinating connection is certainly unlikely, unexpected and long drawn out, but as it's unfolding exclusively online, it really has to be a welcome beacon of love and understanding for both of them, otherwise they wouldn't bother doing it. And I must admit that I, personally, prefer that kind of relationship because I like it when people are genuinely nice to each other.

As everybody knows, Carl's journey has interested me enormously and I've very much enjoyed calling in on it at various stages while writing these Inserts. Hopefully he and Kevin are starting to get back on track now by reaching a place of mutual love and respect, which is much more important to them both than any raw feelings they know they need to ignore. And I hope it's clear that Kevin does have plenty of raw feelings of his own and they do affect him sometimes (as he told James under the truck during the denouement of the Summer Special) but he knows there's no point giving in to them and actually letting them affect his real-life relationships. Of course, that's not to say they won't come out in some way during a future moment of emotional weakness caused by an unexpected trigger...

Looking once again to the more immediate future, watch out next time for Kevin's "meta" comment about Beth's tendency to say mom stuff as we conclude our "baby" trilogy and reach the middle of our "Kevin and Oscar build a life together" trilogy.

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PostPosted: December 8th, 2019, 5:58 am 
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Insert 8: Home Fires Burning, by me.

9 December 2006: Kevin and Oscar return from Mexico and meet Kevin's new cousin.
​Rated M

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Last edited by KevinsMensPyjamas on December 22nd, 2019, 5:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: December 10th, 2019, 6:22 pm 
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Sorry about taking so long. Like a lot of other people the GB2020 trailer sucked up all my attention the last few days.

Quote:
The inclusion of Hayden and Jessica's relationship in the Collinsverse is something I'm very excited about (as we'll be reminded in the very near future, coincidentally enough) but I feel I must warn you that if you're looking for the "grudgingly" aspect specifically, you're in the wrong universe. Their deep and fascinating connection is certainly unlikely, unexpected and long drawn out, but as it's unfolding exclusively online, it really has to be a welcome beacon of love and understanding for both of them, otherwise they wouldn't bother doing it. And I must admit that I, personally, prefer that kind of relationship because I like it when people are genuinely nice to each other.


Yeah, I admit I'd forgotten that Jess and Hayden weren't as grudging in this version. Which gets illuminated well in the latest story. Which was also well done.

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PostPosted: December 12th, 2019, 7:50 am 
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KevinsMensPyjamas wrote:
I can't tell you how much less stressful I've found it writing a story set in 2004 where a young adult like Kevin might well not be weighed down with all kinds of electronic gadgets such as cell phones...

Indeed, this payphone scene has survived intact, along with a mere portion of all the pregnancy/birth research we've done between us (though it was agreed that finer details were not needed this time). For the first time in my life, I questioned that scene in Look Who's Talking Too.

The Riveras are existing more or less harmoniously now, although Carl may have to pluck up some courage before he has another shower. That said, it's the kind of home that has a master en-suite (we may even have mentioned it in-story before; I have no idea!), so maybe the family bathroom has essentially always belonged to the child or (more rarely, as we shall see) children of the house.

Carl was right to stay with James rather than go to a tear-filled maternity ward and hear about Rose's complicated exit; he wouldn't have liked that. It's hard to imagine him taking care of a small Kevin on his own, but I know he and James must have had a fun and safe time with the house to themselves, following all of Carl's lessons and looking ahead to their relationship in the Summer Special.

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PostPosted: December 22nd, 2019, 5:22 am 
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Insert 9: The One, by me.

15 – 16 June 2007: Kevin and Oscar move in together.
Rated T

Here is a feels-filled slice of life spanning twenty-four hours during which Kevin and Oscar move into Eduardo's old apartment, thus completing their "building a life together" trilogy. Anyone who was on the same wavelength as Kevin and Beth in the final scene of the previous story should be quite unsurprised by this event, and of course this is the living situation in which we find the boys fifteen years later in the Summer Special, when they're starting to think about moving out to have their baby.

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Last edited by KevinsMensPyjamas on January 21st, 2020, 5:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: December 24th, 2019, 6:30 pm 
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KevinsMensPyjamas wrote:
Insert 9: The One, by me.

15 – 16 June 2007: Kevin and Oscar move in together.
Rated T

Here is a feels-filled slice of life spanning twenty-four hours during which Kevin and Oscar move in to Eduardo's old apartment, thus completing their "building a life together" trilogy. Anyone who was on the same wavelength as Kevin and Beth in the final scene of the previous story should be quite unsurprised by this event, and of course this is the living situation in which we find the boys fifteen years later in the Summer Special, when they're starting to think about moving out to have their baby.


I wish I could think of something more to say than "Good job, as always", but...good job, as always.

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PostPosted: December 26th, 2019, 9:56 am 
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What was once Eduardo's apartment (or, as some would have it, Carl's 'guest room') is a key location in the series, going through a number of different residents and a couple of makeovers (or at least some sprucing up besides this makeover). I like how well we've kept this link to the source material, including people popping up from the main house for family stuff and warm fuzzies (and sometimes tenant stuff, but we see less of that).

It's nice that Michael fixed up the apartment as a moving-in present; Kevin and Oscar are so lucky to have a kind, skilled labourer friend like that (wish we did!). This whole situation, with the reunion of Kevin and the Gang, marks a new stage of life where everybody is back from their adventures and settling into their homes - rather like the end of Little Women (even including a couple of small children, but without the tragic death).

By the way, if ever anyone reading the series wants a reminder of the layout of the apartment, remember that some crazy fangirl has drawn it all out for you here. We will certainly be seeing a lot more of the place, so it might prove a very useful resource! :D

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PostPosted: December 27th, 2019, 6:16 am 
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Something that's always struck me about Eduardo's apartment is that it would undoubtedly provide an excellent "safe space" for Kevin as he was growing up, certainly emotionally and also physically if he needed it, although thankfully he didn't in this particular universe. Leaving the house but not the property to share some very special moments with a very special relative is a wonderful option that deserves to pass on down the generations in any continuation of the Rivera saga, and we'll certainly see that it very much does in this one.

Hopefully Kevin's relationship with Michael will inspire readers to realise that even if you're locked in a bathroom with someone and you're seriously considering absolutely beating the crap out of them after earning yourself the chance to do so in a fight (Kevin chose to reject this option, as Mike reminds us in this story) you could still end up really close friends if you handle the situation correctly. Certainly Michael turned out to be a very useful friend to have (in practical, round-the-house terms as well as all the emotional good he and Kevin have done each other) and this isn't the last time we'll see evidence of that.

I too found myself thinking about that apartment plan while visualising Kevin and Oscar's activities in this story, and I went back to take a look at it. Undoubtedly the property is designed for one person to live in, as Oscar pointed out in the virtual season, but it's also ideal for a really close, really loving couple to live in together, as Oscar pointed out in the Summer Special.

This could be a very useful acid test for any relationship: if you can envision yourself living with your SO in Eduardo's old apartment as a long-term arrangement, you know it's for keeps, but if your gut says you wouldn't be able to cope with living that closely together, you might as well call it a day then and there. Certainly Kevin and Oscar passed this test, as they lived there together in blissful happiness for just over fifteen years, and we'll see some more snapshots of them doing so in future Inserts. But they might not be the last Collinsverse couple that's destined to find success with this particular living arrangement...

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PostPosted: January 5th, 2020, 7:12 am 
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Insert 10: The Other Side of the Family, by me.

14 – 15 July 2008: Kylie's parents are in town for Conchita's birthday.

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PostPosted: January 7th, 2020, 4:00 pm 
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EGBFan wrote:
Insert 10: The Other Side of the Family, by me.

14 – 15 July 2008: Kylie's parents are in town for Conchita's birthday.


Another enjoyable read.

Quote:
'They can't know for sure,' said Kylie. 'That's what I read, anyway; one sac or one placenta means they're definitely monozygotic, but two doesn't necessarily mean they're not. I read that the only sure sign of dizygotic twins is if they're different sexes, and we don't know about that yet.'

'But the doctors do,' said Eduardo. 'Maybe that's how they know for sure.'

Kylie looked peeved at that. 'I really hope not. I hope they're the same sex. I mean, everyone's just assuming they're one of each, despite the decision not to be told, but there's just as much chance they're the same. Probably more chance, if you think about it.'


"Well, I mean, having one of each worked out okay for Egon and Janine of course..."

Quote:
Steve lay with his eyes shut for a number of seconds, but they snapped open in irritation when a series of whirring noises came to his ears.

'What are you doing?' he demanded.


My mind went to a very dirty place when I read that part... :lol:

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PostPosted: January 9th, 2020, 5:29 am 
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I've been wondering what to call this new trilogy of Inserts. "Eduardo and Kylie at home" was my first thought, but that doesn't actually apply to the middle story of the three, as we'll discover next time. Certainly it's an "Eduardo and Kylie's daughters" (or simply a "Conchita and Rose") trilogy, so maybe "those little girls" really is the best name for it!

Of the real-life snippets that I recognise in this story (including the dread approach of two fifty-seven and Pagan's reaction to Chita's kangaroo toy) the one that I remember most vividly is Kylie's near miss at the hands of her younger child, when little Rosey (feeling equally as affronted as Rose was) very nearly succeeded in shoving our mother backwards onto an open fire. At the time I experienced horrified visions of her going up in flames like a paper bag, but actually I don't think the effect would have been quite so dramatic or terminal, although she could certainly have been badly hurt!

Jill and Steve represent clear proof of two points that I very much agree with, the first of which is that some couples can benefit enormously from getting divorced. Trying to "save" a marriage that is obviously beyond saving is never going to work, but acknowledging the change in your relationship and taking appropriate steps to interact in different, better ways to hopefully become friends all over again just has to be an excellent idea!

The second point is that you don't have to be a perfect parent to have a decent relationship with your grown-up children, and perhaps even a great relationship with your grandchildren! You just have to have been good enough (e.g. considerate, supportive enough) to have earned your children's love. Kylie actually said this to Kevin way back in The Riveras main series when they first talked about their raw feelings together. Perhaps Carl has just about finished doing that for Kevin at this stage, just as Steve had just about finished doing it for Kylie back then.

Of course there are many subtle levels between "good enough" and "very good", and somewhere between the two you'll find the line separating the fathers who might accidentally slam a birthday cake into their daughter's abdomen, like Steve, and those who definitely never would, like Eduardo. I'm not sure which side of that line Carl would fall, especially as he doesn't have any daughters, but thinking about the way he is with his nieces and his granddaughters (spoiler!) I expect he'd fall the same side as Eduardo. Although considering what happens in the next story, perhaps I'll change my mind about that next time!

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PostPosted: January 11th, 2020, 3:55 am 
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KevinsMensPyjamas wrote:
Of the real-life snippets that I recognise in this story (including the dread approach of two fifty-seven and Pagan's reaction to Chita's kangaroo toy) the one that I remember most vividly is Kylie's near miss at the hands of her younger child, when little Rosey (feeling equally as affronted as Rose was) very nearly succeeded in shoving our mother backwards onto an open fire. At the time I experienced horrified visions of her going up in flames like a paper bag, but actually I don't think the effect would have been quite so dramatic or terminal, although she could certainly have been badly hurt!

I have no memory of that, so I can't have been very different in age from Rose in this story (17 months), but I well remember the feelings of outrage at being treated so unjustly. Younger siblings being packed off to bed on special occasions, while the older sibling gets to stay up and have all the fun, cannot be held accountable for their actions!

This Insert came about chiefly because I thought Jill and Steve ought to have some acknowledgement of their grandparent status, though they are in a sense the 'other' (from an audience point of view, at least). I also thought it would be interesting to see them together after they each appeared separately in previous series (Steve in the first episode of the Virtual Season, followed much later by Jill in one episode of Eduardo and Kylie's European Vacation). While Hollywood may not like divorce, the Collinsverse (as Jake has said) knows that it sometimes (often?) is the very best option.

Thanks as always for the comments, guys.

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