Eva was an only child until she was 32. She was their “wonderful gift” and “happy surprise”. Dad had the mumps when he was a teenager, but they don’t talk about things like that in their family.
She overheard her Great Aunt and her Nanna whispering once about “test tubes” and “it” being “unnatural”. They stopped talking when they saw her and her Nanna fiddled around in her handbag for a boiled sweet.
Eva first saw (some of) her siblings on one of those daytime TV chat shows.
‘Fertility Doctor played God and admitted using his own sperm to father dozens of children.’
There were 14 of them in the studio. Eva looked into her own eyes. Did that woman hate her nose as much as she hated hers? Another one had a smaller perkier nose and a softer chin. Eva now knew what she would look like if she was pretty. There was a more voluptuous, gorgeous version. An athlete. An aged druggie. A police officer. That one had the same kink in the same place in her hair. How many of them ground their teeth at night and got reflux from cucumber? They were all of the people she could have been. How many more were out there somewhere in the world?
Who could she call if she was affected by anything in that programme?
Maybe her Mum and Dad already knew and were keeping it from her. Maybe they didn’t know. What good would it do to tell them? No, it wasn’t true. Her Dad was her real Dad. She know what she would do. Pretend she didn’t know and had never seen the programme. Follow the family tradition and say nothing. They don’t talk about things like that in their family.
One of my favourite films (about clones) is ‘Never Let Me Go’ based on the novel by Kazuo Ishiguro.