Guess what? Ma’ya is going to be my official chaperone. Along with her daughter Eve. That means I won’t have to get my brains scrambled again. Or as much. Seriously, it took a few days to stop tasting metal. Just in time for Ashley to introduce me to them at our dinner on Mor’ite.

On a side note, that dinner is exactly like the hot-pot Chinese restaurants back on Earth. We prepare our food items, many wrapped in dough, skewer them, then dunk them into a boiling broth. Every time I think I’m in an alien setting, I see yet another parallel. It’s uncanny.

I am not sure if I’m breaking protocol with my expat interview project, but I am adding Eve to the list. She’s not really Ma’ya’s daughter, but a clone created on Earth. She even sounds like an Earthling when she talks. It’s weird. She and Ma’ya could be twins, almost. But Eve has this Northwestern accent. It’s freaky listening to her speak. From what I understand, she just recently learned Elvish and Common too.

But, she’s been through a bit of trauma, so I’ll probably keep this interview on the light side.

~ ~ ~ 

ME: Hello, Eve.

Ma’ya: I’m Ma’ya.

ME: Are you sure?

Eve: [waves] We’re not that identical.

ME: [squints] Well, Ma’ya does not look a day over 1,500 years.

Ma’ya: Why thank you. I’m actually only a little over 300 years old.

ME: [gapes] But, Ashley said you were over 3,000 years old. Did he pull one on me?

Ma’ya: Pull what?

Eve: That’s a Terran saying for a joke or trick.

Ma’ya: Hmm. Pull one. I’ll have to remember that. But no. I was in stasis for a bit over 3,000 years.

ME: Oh. Like hibernation? For… wow, that’s a long time. So, you don’t remember any of it then?

Ma’ya: I remember every minute of it. There was a… the stasis pod was damaged. Steven became my buffer but we had to wait together for 3,000 years before we could escape the pod.

ME: [counts on fingers] Okay, you lost me. He’s, what, 20? Younger? I’ll just go with it. Eve. How are you doing?

Eve: [glances at Ma’ya – she did that a lot] Um, I’m doing well?

ME: Are you asking me?

Eve: [shakes head and looks down – something else she does a lot] Sorry. I think… fine. I’m doing fine.

ME: [grabs her hand] It’s okay, Eve. We’re just chatting, that’s all.

Eve: You’re jealous of your fiancée. Sorry. I didn’t mean to pry.

ME: [looks at hand] Reading me like a book. Yes. Yes, I am. But I am proud of her too. Her project is taking her to many worlds and she is meeting the most exotic creatures. Of course, I am now sitting in front of a couple myself, right? Anything else?

Eve: Sorry. I cannot help it. You can let go.

ME: From my understanding, I think that is what being an Elf is all about. Right?

Ma’ya: [nods]

ME: Your hands are amazing. I can feel the strength in those fingers.

Eve: Thank you. You can let go if you want.

ME: [lets go] I want you to feel at ease. It’s okay. Aileen read me pretty thoroughly already.

Eve: Sorry. I’m new to this. People back home… back on Earth… Terra… they, I was not allowed to touch them. Just Anna. She didn’t mind. The others had secrets, I guess.

ME: Eve, you have nothing to be sorry for. I find you fascinating. You sound so… Terran. Where did you grow up?

Eve: British Columbia. My father had an island off the coast.

ME: Father? I thought you were cloned.

Ma’ya: They apparently took a sample from me, then used a surrogate to give birth to her.

Eve: I met her. My surrogate. When I was running from bad people.

ME: So, not like they just built her in a lab, then? You were like, what, an egg donor?

Ma’ya: You can say that. I provided the material they used in an egg.

ME: Does that make her part human? Terran?

Ma’ya: Elvish genetics always dominate. The Terran genetics are discarded. So, she’s basically me. Just a lot younger.

Eve: I’m still me.

ME: Did they keep you caged or something?

Eve: No. No. They were my family. Especially Anna. My father was rarely there, but Anna raised me.

ME: Wow. Did you know? I mean, the fur is a dead giveaway, but, did you know you were an alien?”

Eve: [shakes head] No. I thought I had some sort of condition. That’s why people wore suits around me. Except Anna. But I never got that from her. Not until… until..

ME: It’s okay. Ashley clued me in on some of the details. She was killed.

Eve: She saved me. Got me away. I didn’t know she was shot. Not until it was too late. I tried to help her. To save her. She was the only mother I’d known.

ME: If this is too much, we can stop. I’m so sorry. I got the impression you were like some lab experiment that was caged up. But you, they were your family to you?

Eve: [nods] They were the only family I had known. They always treated me well. Not like some experiment. I mean, they did study me. They would take blood samples and give me tests. But, it was okay.

ME: I can tell this is a bit much. How about more benign questions. You and Ma’ya actually met. How awesome is that?

Eve: [shrugs] Lo’rel found me. I thought he was a monster at first, but he saved me. He had Ma’ya. Then, Steven…

ME: Yeah. Steven. So, it’s like you found your true mother.

Eve: I just wanted to be safe. To not… they killed Anna. She was my mother all my life. Ma’ya, I wasn’t expecting her. But I guess, yeah. She’s my mother too.

ME: Wow. I opened a can of worms here. I’m sorry.

Ma’ya: She is still coming to terms with who she is. Our bond is helping, but she is still quite shy. We are going to visit Steven soon. He seemed to help last time.

ME: So, he was like, the first Elf she had met?

Ma’ya: Yes. Then she met my great niece. And finally me. She is about to find out that she has a much larger family than she ever imagined. That is hard for her. She is so shy. Steven seems to relate, I think.

Eve: I’m… I’m glad to be normal. Finally. That helps.

ME: Oh, you are so incredibly normal, Eve.

~ ~ ~

I think I am going to like having these two as my chaperones. Eve is a character. She’s really withdrawn, but I can tell she’ll be a hoot once she opens up. And listening to her talk is just weird. Other Elves, when they speak English, they sound like, well, they’re from Ireland or something. That lilt. But she sounds like she would be home in California. And her Elvish sounds a bit odd too. Her mouth-muscles haven’t wrapped around that language yet. It will be neat to follow up with her in a few months to see how she’s progressed. Now, who gets to be my next victim?

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