Family Secrets

Genre: Action/Adventure

Plot: Siblings who discover their parents are notorious international crime bosses.

Words to use: Past, present, confusion, timeless, adolescence, history, family, dynasty, questions, curiosity, decades, henchmen, crime, maturity, inheritance.

The twins, Sissy and Grace, grew up as any regular American child does today. Their life seemed to be the quintessential life in hometown USA. A timeless story.  The white picket fence, hot dogs and flying American flags on wrap around porches. Their family was typical, they thought. Their home was filled with laughter and traditions. Their shared past was filled with traditional parties that they shared since they are twins. The decades past for them quietly and quickly. 

During their childhood they played in the local park, during their adolescence they rode their bikes through the neighborhood under the aspen trees that lined the streets, shading them from the hot sun of summer, bare in the winter that held drops of water from the intermittent rain. The present day was filled with homework and thoughts of what to do after high school. So many decisions they had to make for their future.

The questions arose in their mind with growing up. What was once easily hidden is now getting more difficult to hide from them since the curiosityof the twins began to grow stronger. Despite efforts of their parents, there was always clues, little things that went over their heads when they were little. It was usually the appearance of what their parents called “aunt” or “uncle”.  So many of them. But the truth was not what the twins were expecting. There was a very dangerous family dynasty they had built but as what often happens with family secrets. They get exposed. 

It started innocently enough one day, when they were both taking a break from homework. 

“I got an assignment to do a family history,” sissy told her sister. They were sitting down to the table to have a snack, like their mother wanted them to do. “I was going to ask mom but she is always rather non responsive to questions about family. She never gives me a straight answer. Have you noticed that?

Grace thought for a moment, “I don’t think I have ever asked questions about our family history. It never comes up.” She took a sip of her soda and they both lapsed into silence while they continue to eat. 

Their dad made an appearance just at that moment. It was uncharacteristic for him to be home at the time. They usually didn’t see him till later in the evening and weekend. Then he spent a lot of time in their basement which was, according to him, was where his office was for personal business. They never questioned it. It was normal. They looked at each other then to their dad and some confusion passed between them momentarily but they allowed it to let it go. It was their strength – pretending everything is okay and normal. 

“Hey girls, what are my beautiful ladies up to this afternoon?” He was sure he wasn’t expected at the time but didn’t behave any differently so they just shrugged it off. 

“We are just taking a break from homework.” Grace told her dad.

“Okay, I‘ll be in my office. If you need something, your mom should be home soon.” He told them this often through the years. They were used to it. 

When they heard the door close, Sissy looked toward the location of the door to the basement and then back to her sister, “I am just so curious what his office looks like. I wonder if there is anything of use for our family history in his office. He never lets us down there though and they don’t talk about it. Have you ever explored his office on your own? I haven’t.”

“No, I have never thought about it but it is something that I have wondered about.” They looked at each other, knowing exactly what the other was thinking about. “It is time to explore I think.” Grace told her. 

“My thoughts exactly,” she responded with the same mischievous twinkle in her eye. With maturity, in their case, came a realization of differences there was between their family and their friends. This secret was too delicious to pass up in their curious minds.

The twins were not prepared for what they found when they finally found the perfect opportunity to explore. The door wasn’t locked which was a surprise. They always assumed it was because their parents always gave them that impression. They made their way down the stairs and found what could only be described as a lair of a crime organization. There was file cabinets, a few computers, a table with many chairs situated around it, large monitors that showed many views of the world and tv stations broadcasting their local news. 

“I am so confused Grace, what are we looking at right now?” Her voice was just a whisper. 

“I don’t know, Sissy, but I feel like some henchman is about to step out of the shadows at any minute. Do you feel it?”

“Yes, I feel that too”, she pointed toward the desk in the corner, surrounded by filing cabinets, “that must be his desk. Let’s look what dad is hiding from us.”

They made a thorough search of the desk. In one of the drawers they found a bunch of files. Almost like character files for a book. They each contained pictures and a full description of people, code names and their skills and abilities. They found files for both of their parents. A whole history of their life of crime and their organization of criminals. Both parents were the bosses of this organization. The shock sent chills through them both.

“Both our parents are criminals? This can’t be happening, Sissy. Am I dreaming?”

“We are close but I don’t think we share dreams so it can’t be. It is just unbelievable that our parent’s life is a total lie.” Grace was trying to hold back tears. She was so disappointed in her parents and the lies. Their entire life has been a lie. The world crashed down upon them both.

“Is this our inheritance, Grace? A life of crime and lies?” She snarled in disgust.

“Sissy, it will be okay. Let’s put everything back. We will be back to our regular life. We are off to college soon. We don’t know what they are capable of so let’s just act like nothing happened, Okay?”

Grace was trying to be strong for her sister. They scrambled to put all the files back to where they found them when they heard a woman’s voice near the door, “what is going on here?” And they both froze in their tracks, blood draining from their face in fear. They saw their mom standing on the bottom of the stairs. Her eyes sad knowing this outcome too well. 

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