Among the Hidden
How we cite our quotes:
Jen rolled her eyes. "Yeah, all Mom's husbands have been. Strange taste, huh? Number one was an environmental lawyer, of all things; number two was corporate--that's how they had enough money to get me. And number three, Dad, is with the Government. High up, I might add." (16.58)
Further evidence of families coming in all shapes and sizes: Mr. Talbot isn't Jen's biological father, but that doesn't stop her from calling him "dad." This is also a good hint that Mr. Talbot is a nice guy—not only does he marry a woman with two kids of her own, but he's such a good stepdad that she'll call him Dad.
"Would they ever betray you?" Jen narrowed her eyes, truly curious. "Not now, necessarily, but, say, years from now, if your parents were dead and it wouldn't hurt anybody but you, and they'd get lots of money for it--"
It was a question Luke had never considered. But he knew the answer.
"Never," he said, his voice cracking with earnestness. (21.45-46)
Now for a round of "Things Luke Never Worried About Before." Sure hope he's right about this.
"I'd give anything to have her back," he whispered. "But it's true. I saw. They gave us...they gave us the body. Special privilege for a Government official." His voice was so bitter, Luke could barely listen. "And now we couldn't even bury her in the family plot. Couldn't take a bereavement day off work. Couldn't tell anyone why we're going around with red eyes and aching hearts. No--we just had to pretend to be the same old family of four we'd always been." (27.37)
Even in death, Jen can't be acknowledged as being part of the Talbot family, and to make matters worse for her family, they have to go around pretending that nothing is wrong. Ouch.