The difference in appearance was so striking that Zhi-yi had always assumed she wasn’t blood-related to her siblings. She had wanted to ask her parents if she was adopted for a long time but it took her sixteenth birthday to actually bring up the nerve.
“I’m adopted, aren’t I?” she blurted out after the first bite of the cake.
Her parents exchanged glances. They had seen this coming.
“We love you just as much as Han and Jun-Hui,” her dad said.
“I never suggested anything else,” Zhi-yi replied. “But I have none of your DNA?”
Her mom shook her head.
“We should have told you earlier. You have a right to know.”
“Did you know my real parents?”
“That’s not a straightforward question to answer.”
“Did you ever meet them face-to-face? Do you know where they live?”
“What if I wanted to meet them? Could I call an agency? I assume you worked with an agency…”
“Strict anonymity was a condition.”
“So I will never know my real parents?”
“We are your real parents,” her mother pleaded, crying.
Zhi-yi realised she had been insensitive. They were her real parents: kind, loving, respectful, warm, supportive. Anything she could wish for. She put the cake to the side and gave them both a big hug. She didn’t cry. In her whole life she never had.
An hour later, when Zhi-yi had gone over to her boyfriend’s house, her parents debated the issue.
“Do you think she’ll keep asking questions?”
“She won’t. They told us this might happen and we followed their manual to the T.”
“But what if she does?”
“Then we’ll return her to the factory. Technology has come a long way in the past fourteen years. Apparently they can safely reboot now.”
Did you enjoy this story? Then why not try the 101 stories in 300 words or less in YOU’RE GETTING SLEEPY, THE HYPNOTIST’S APPRENTICE YAWNED.