Eve pushed the chair back from the desk, shaking her head. She got up and strode across the room, pulling her jacket off and throwing it across the bed as she did. Covering her face with her hands, she started to pace.
“I can’t do this.” She said to herself, “I can’t do this. I was an experiment. I was a guinea pig? So yesterday I just thought that I was ignoring the fact that I had shitty parents and today I find out that I actually spent my childhood in a laboratory with two scientist freaks. What the hell? What is this?” She stopped her pacing on the opposite side of the bedroom and stretched out her arm towards the desk in a gesture of outrage and incredulity. As if there was someone there to witness her rant. She lowered her hand slowly.
“There used to be someone there.” She whispered under her breath. She was shocked that she had said it and even more shocked at the hint of longing her voice. She didn’t miss her childhood and she sure as hell didn’t miss the voices and being surrounded, suffocated day in day out. She relished being completely alone with no one to hear her thoughts but herself, no one to look after but herself. Didn’t she?
She turned to the window behind her and stared out. All she could see was trees and the faint outline of the town on the horizon if she squinted. She leant her forehead against the cool glass and closed her eyes.
She didn’t want to read this book, because it wasn’t what Marie thought it was, not that she had had any hopes of that in the first place. It was a cosy little book on how much they loved their daughter yet didn’t know how to show it. It was a cold and clinical scientific journal on Eve’s progression through childhood as something other. The first of her kind; the only one of her kind. Yesterday she had been perfectly fine. It had been a perfectly ordinary day at work and she had come home to her perfectly ordinary flat and perfectly ordinary night in with the tv. And here she was about to dig up everything that she had spent the last six and a half years burying. Why? Why should she read it? Just because her parents were dead? Just because the nice old lady downstairs had told her to? It wouldn’t change anything about her life now. It wouldn’t help to know anymore details about what they had done. The knowledge she already had, had almost ruined her, so surely anymore and she would be sent over the edge. She had come back to go to a funeral because of some idiotic sense of duty and that was all that was required of her. She swept around with the intent of picking up her jacket and leaving right there and then. But she stopped.
The book lay open on the desk, enticing her to take a closer look. What was she? Ordinary. Boring. She was invisible to most people, and that was the way that she had made it. She didn’t have looks or talents or charisma. The one thing she had, she had left behind when she had run away all those years ago. Everything that had made her ‘extraordinary’ or ‘special’ was gone. She had been living the life of a shadow for the past six years, with no childhood to draw from nothing to link her to other people. And there on that desk lay everything. She lay on that desk, the Eve that she had severed so that she could run from the fear and pain. That little girl lay there. And just maybe an explanation to why she had endured so much. She didn’t feel like a real person, and maybe remembering would make her feel real. Maybe she needed to remember who and what she was. She needed to find herself again.
She had no illusions about the man and woman who had raised her now. Their aloofness actually made sense to her. Why they had left the journal in Marie’s possession was what confused her, but maybe that answer lay within the pages too. She crossed the room and sat down again. She had a knot in her stomach that told her that she was definitely going to regret this, but she had made her decision. She settled herself in the desk chair and pulled the book towards her.
Eve opened the first page and started her life.