The couple awoke Tuesday before dawn and, since Derek was entertaining himself playing cards till he had to go in to the hospital,
Yulia decided against resuming her selling (though she very much wanted to get rid of those last 3 items), because she didn’t want another lecture from her husband about “taking this pregnancy seriously.” So, she busied herself at the computer, giving financial advice for extra money.
‘Derek can’t possibly find fault with THIS,’ she thought, though she wondered if that were in fact true.
During that early morning, the home venue reached Level 9,
and Yulia took the next Motivational perk, “Perk Up.” (She didn’t plan to use it too much, but she wanted the perk after that one.) ‘Some customers are just grouchy,’ she said to herself, ‘and there’s nothing anyone can do about that.’
A couple hours later, she passed by Derek on her way out to their front yard.
“And just WHERE is my seriously pregnant wife going?” he asked, without looking up.
“Computer’s broken,” Yulia replied (though she didn’t sound disappointed at all).
“You COULD ask your very mechanical husband to repair it for you...,” Derek said, somewhat amused at the light and merry tone in her voice.
“Oh, the butler’s already taking care of it,” she answered. “Said he’d have it fixed in a jiffy. Till then, I’ve got to do SOMETHING, so I figure I’ll just sell those 3 remaining items. Should be really quick.”
Yulia returned in less than an hour, just as Derek was about to change for work.
“See?” she said, with a note of triumph. “I TOLD you it would be quick.”
Derek left for the hospital, and he had to admit the place looked better without the clutter in the front yard.
Yulia did go back to sleep shortly after he left, but the summer heat bothered her and she tossed and turned. That morning she had gotten a message from her construction workers that her second venue, Yulia’s Emporium, was finished, and she thought, ‘Maybe I’ll just drive over and have a look at it. Derek SURELY can’t object to that—I’ll just be looking."’
She was very pleased with the new venue. She had invested about $30,000 in it, and it was an attractive building (with a grill, counter, and picnic table outside),
a spacious and attractive selling area,
and a generous employee break room, complete with a toilet, shower, and tents in case her employees needed to take a nap.
She figured it wouldn’t be too tiring just to set the prices of her items (‘surely my strict doctor husband would be okay with that,’ she reasoned, ‘because it’s really just paperwork’), and set them all to “Ridiculously Cheap,” because her goal again was to accrue customer loyalty stars as quickly as possible.
She tried phoning her employees, Shelby, Troy, and Christian (‘just to update them,’ she thought), but none of them were at home. ‘It would be a shame, really, not to give this place just a quick little test run,’ she thought. She briefly considered running the venue herself, but thought (correctly) that that would be too exhausting. She called the employment agency to see if anyone decent was available. There was one guy who had a Bronze register badge,
so she hired him and asked him to come in. ‘At these low prices, customers will certainly buy my items without my doing any selling, so all I have to do is keep up with restocking,’ she rationalized.
Bruce Rauscher was easygoing enough, but he had a personal style that Yulia didn’t think fit her venue.
He didn’t, however, seem to object to the uniform she asked him to wear,
and got right to work at the register (surrounded by snapdragons to keep his motives up),
and Yulia opened her new store.
Customers started trickling in,
and for a while the operation ran smoothly,
the business reached Level 1,
and Yulia took the “Motivational Speech” perk, which she very much wanted.
She thought happily, ‘Once this place gets really busy, I can improve the performance of all my employees!’
But things soon took a turn for the worse. Bruce proved to be an undependable employee, often wandering away from the register without notice.
Yulia quickly filled in as cashier but, since she was less skilled at it than Bruce, and since the customers had already been waiting in line for some time, they were not appeased.
One customer even threw his intended purchases down on the floor and stormed out (as Bruce was dancing to the stereo),
and the business rank went down to Level 0, with a corresponding hit to Yulia’s aspiration.
Again and again, Yulia had to remind Bruce to do his assigned job,
but still she occasionally found him goofing off in the break room in front of the TV.
Because she kept having to ring up customers, she couldn’t keep up with the restocking, and the store was soon filled with red X’s (which made for unhappy customers).
She had no choice but to close the store.
“But I just GOT here!” Ethan Barrett complained.
Yulia went to the break room to have a talk with Bruce. “I know this was just your first day, Bruce,” she said gently, “but going forward I’m going to need you to concentrate a bit more on your duties. Go home, get some rest, and we’ll try again in a day or so.”
By this time Yulia was becoming quite tired,
so went home and collapsed into bed.
NOTES FROM THE AUTHOR: I’m not really sure what happened with Bruce Rauscher—why he was such a poor employee. (Maybe he’s Marie Rauscher’s brother, and she’s mad that Derek is off the market, and she had Bruce intentionally screw up Yulia’s business?) I occasionally boolpropped just to check his motives, and he wasn’t really tired, and the snapdragons around his register station kept all his other needs up. I wonder now if Yulia should have used her new “Motivational Talk” perk—maybe the game was trying to encourage me to use this?