Kim ji (Kind):
I was done buying the ice cream and was about going to stand in a shade when I felt something hit me from behind and I found myself falling on the floor.
I groaned and tried to regain my strength. Who could this be?
“Hey! Why weren’t you careful? Were you carrying some load on your eyes?” I heard the rider ask and figured out it was a girl.
I slowly stood up and turned to look at her.
“I’m sorry” I apologized, even if she was the one that knocked me down.
My jaws dropped immediately. What the hell?
I mean, I don’t seem to understand. Is this a dream or what? Or am I looking at a mirror right now?
She…looks exactly like me.
“What?” I muttered.
She also looked surprised. What’s going on?
She climbed down from her bicycle immediately.
“Hey” she Called with a crumpled look and drew closer to me.
“Who are you?”
I was speechless and kept staring at her. It was shocking.
I stared at her from head to toe. She seemed real. But how’s that possible? The only difference was our hair. Hers was long while mine was short.
“I’m talking to you; who are you?” She asked again but I couldn’t find the right words to say.
She looked around and suddenly, gripped my hand and started walking away with me.
Kim nana (Crazy):
I took her to a quiet corner where I was sure we wouldn’t be seen by anyone. I mean, I didn’t want anyone to see us.
I let go of her hand as soon as we got there.
“If you don’t tell me the truth, I’ll beat you up” I said, pointing my finger at her.
“Who are you? Why do you look exactly like me?”
“I…I don’t know. I’m as surprised as you are” she stuttered.
I scoffed and touched her face, turning it from side to side. It seemed real.
“Are you some sort of spy huh? Were you sent to disguise me?” I still asked.
“I’m not! I…I don’t even base here. We just came over for an excursion” she replied.
What the hell is this?
“Where do you stay?” I asked.
“I stay in Seoul. And my school is on an excursion. We’re to return this morning, but I just accompanied my friend here to check up on someone” she replied and I shook my head.
Although, I’ve heard of people looking alike, but this is too much. Could it really be a coincidence?
“What’s your name?” I asked and she replied:
Huh? Kim ji? And mine is…Kim nana?
“You stay with your parents?” I asked again.
“Yes – my dad”.
“Your dad? What about your mum?”
“I…I don’t know. I grew up without knowing my mum. I never met her and dad barely talked about her”.
I furrowed my brows and thought.
Could this be another confidence? She grew up with her dad? The same way I grew up with just my mum? And her dad barely talks about her mum, the same way mum barely talks about dad.
Hold on; the old photograph! The one with three identical babies. Could this be what I’m thinking?
“You…who are you?” She also asked me and I looked at her.
“Can you come with me? I need to show you something” I told her but she remained quiet for a while.
“Come on; its important. Wait; we can’t move around like this. A lot of people know me out here and seeing us together might create confusion. Stay here, I’ll get you a veil”.
“Okay. I’ll just text my friend” she replied and I ran off immediately.
Thank goodness I had a little money on me.
I rushed to the closest store and bought a blue veil. Then, I returned to where she was and handed the veil to her.
“Here. Put it on. Let’s go” I told her and she covered half of her face with it, from her nose downwards. That way, it’d be impossible for anyone to figure out we were looking alike.
“So, where are we going?” She asked, her eyes beaming.
“Home” I replied.
Luckily, mum was still at work and that was just what I needed. I needed some privacy so we could sort this out.
I arrived home with the strange lady and took her straight to my room. She kept running her eyes around.
I reached for my bag and brought out the picture.
“Does this look familiar to you?” I asked, showing the picture to her.
She flinched immediately.
“This is my dad!” She said in a gasp and collected the picture from me.
My eyes drooped.
“Re…Really?” I asked.
“Yes! He’s my dad! And…” She paused and scoffed.
“Who are these kids?”
“I don’t know” I replied and the confusion on her face increased.
“I have some childhood photos and the babies in this picture…look exactly like the ones I have at home. Although, I don’t know where I am in the picture but, it’s the same faces. How’s this possible?” She asked, aghast.
“This woman is my mum” I told her, pointing to mum in the picture.
“Could it be possible…my mum and your dad were married and we’re probably sisters?”
A stunned silence stepped in as we stared into each other’s eyes.
“Didn’t you ever ask her about the picture?” She asked.
“I did. But she told me the babies were dead. Obviously, that was a lie. She gets angry each time I try to ask her about it ”
“She denied us?” She asked pathetically.
“She…she told you I was dead?”
I shut her a stare, then took my eyes back to the picture.
“What about the third baby?” I asked.
“I mean, if you’re with dad and I’m with mum, then, where could the third baby be? Its possible she’s really dead”.
Surprisingly, I saw a tear rolling down her cheek, but she quickly wiped it off.
“So, what do we do now?” I asked after a while of silence. “Don’t you think we need answers? Do you think we should confront my mum?”
“I don’t know” she replied tearfully.
“I mean, she said I was dead. She denied me. What if she doesn’t like me? And doesn’t accept me even if I show myself to her? I don’t know. I’m just scared.” She bent her head and wept.
Hold on; why does she cry easily?
Well, I won’t deny it. I also felt bittered. Why would mum hide the truth from me?
“But, what if we’re wrong?” I suddenly asked.
“Don’t you think there’s a reason our parents are apart? What could’ve happened that’d make mum deny having triplets? Don’t you think we need to find out?”
“Still, I don’t think I can confront her. What if she doesn’t want to see me now? You said it yourself, she gets angry each time you brought up questions about the picture. What if she really doesn’t like me?”
I was about saying something when my eyes suddenly caught the sight of mum through the window.
“Oh my! She’s home” I exclaimed and the lady hurried to have a look immediately.
“That’s mum?” She asked in an endearing tone.
Why’s she home soon? I thought she was on the morning shift.
“Hurry up. Put on the veil. We need to leave” I told her and she covered the veil immediately.
I hid the picture and we left my room together.
Getting to the sitting room, we met mom walking in, holding some bags.
“Mum!” I called and looked back at the lady.
“Kim nana!” She also called in surprise and stopped walking.
“Why re you home? Didn’t you say you were going to help…”
“Yes! I…just came over to do something” I cut her off.
“Um…and you? Why re you home early?” I further asked.
“Well, there’s a little adjustment in the duty roster and I didn’t notice. I’m off duty today” she replied, sounding tired.
“And who’s that lady with you?” She asked.
Kim ji (Kind):
I watched in bemusement. So, this woman was my mum? I do have a mum after all. She’s so pretty.
“And who’s that lady with you?” She asked my look-alike and my heart skipped.
“Good evening ma’am” I cut in, calmly.
“Good evening dear. How’re you?” She asked, sounding so sweet.
“I’m…I’m fine” I stuttered, batting my lashes.
“Who’s she, Kim?” She asked my look-alike.
“She’s my friend,mum. And I just came to show her..”
“Your friend?” She cut her off.
“Since when did you start making friends??”
“Well, I told you, didn’t I? I’m a good girl”.
“And…why does she have a veil over her face?” She asked.
“Oh! She’s…having some skin reactions and is shy to expose her face. So…” She paused and bit her lips.
“You know what, mum? We’ll just be on our way now. She needs to leave” she continued and she tried walking away.
“Hold on; I got you something” the woman said and dipped her hand into her bag, bringing out a pretty necklace.
“I saw this on my way home and decided to get it for you” she said as she turned her around and locked the pretty necklace around her neck.
“Thank you , mum” my look-alike beamed.
I watched ruefully.
She turned and looked at me.
“Come on, let’s go” she told me and started walking towards the door.
I bent my head and followed her behind.
“What’s your name?” The woman asked when I got to where she was and I stopped to look at her.
Our eyes locked.
“Come on, there’s no more time” my look-alike cut in and I blinked rapidly and finally followed her out of the house.
My mind became filled with disturbing thoughts.
The whole thing replayed in my head. That woman was my mum. The mother I’ve wished for my entire life.
“Geez! That was close!” My look-alike said as we got far away from the house. We were still walking.
I bent my head and didn’t say a word. I recalled how sweet she was – her voice and how pretty she looked as well.
And the way she petted my look-alike. It was something I’ve always longed for – the love of a mother.
“So, what do we do next!” She asked, still walking ahead of me.
“K…Kim!” I called and stopped walking and she also turned and looked at me.
“What is it?” She asked.
I sighed and looked back at the house, then back at her.
“I have a suggestion” I said, nervously.
“I want us to switch”.