Mar
18
2019

Group Seed: The Huxley Families.

Huxley Families

  • Town: Windham, Indiana
  • Location: Blackford County, Indiana
  • Number of households: 300
    • Married, With Children: 100
  • Population: 800
  • Adult Population: 600
    • With BA or higher degree: 600
  • Race: Huxleys, 100%
  • Median Household income, 2018: $80,000
  • Poverty Rate: 0%
  • Annual Unemployment Rate, 2018: 0%

In 1954, something happened to a small town located on the old Norfolk Suffolk train line In Blackford County, Indiana, halfway between Hartford and Montpelier.  Weird Science, botched spell, Red Menace psychic warfare, aliens, demons, sheer random chance; nobody knows what triggered the event. All that people do know is that the existing ghost town was replaced with a decidedly occupied one called Windham, where every house was the same and every family was the same and they all had the same names, personalities, and behaviors.  There was Brad Huxley, the father; Brenda Huxley, the mother; and Jack and Jane Huxley, teenage twins. And all the Brads and Brendas and Jacks and Janes were all identical to each other, right down to the DNA.

And they’re still there, too.  Each family’s Jack and Jill grew up, married other Jacks and Jills from Windham, and settled down to raise twins named Howard and Helen.  Who then all grew up, married other Howards and Helens from Windham, and settled down to raise twins named Keith and Karen. That generation has just now grown up, married other Keiths and Karens, and are now all raising infant twins named Tony and Tina.  The Brads and Brendas are all dead of old age; the Jacks and Jills are in full great-grandparent mode, and the Howards and Helens are busy planning fairly active retirements.

As the above might suggest, Windham has been largely left alone by the authorities.  It helps that the Huxley families are all pleasant, intelligent people who enjoy meeting strangers (not that any of them would ever marry someone who isn’t a Huxley); it helps rather more that the entire situation reeks of active meddling by someone or something with access to quite a bit of mysterious power. The general consensus among those in the know is that there is a time when the monkey should poke the strange object with a stick, and there is a time when the monkey should not, and this is one of the times when the monkey should not.  In the meantime, the government has discovered that Huxleys excel at a variety of usually boring but important administrative work, with none of the stereotypical negative personality habits associated with bureaucrats. They have to be nagged to take sick days, in fact; Huxleys tend not to catch colds or the flu.

Please note that there’s nothing stopping a Huxley from leaving Windham.  Every quarter century, in fact, the entire graduating class goes off to colleges all across the country to get their four-year degrees in a variety of subjects.  Then they come back to Windham, pick a suitable spouse, and settle down to raise twins. Huxleys go on vacations, too. Why wouldn’t they? Especially since they live in Indiana, which is such a fine place for hunting, fishing, camping, and boating.

Huxleys do avoid telling all of this to non-Huxleys who aren’t already aware of the situation, but only because it admittedly sounds weird.  All of their neighbors know, obviously; but Blackford County is very small, and the Huxleys are an indirect source of employment for much of the county.  Huxleys don’t like to run supermarkets or restaurants or tax preparers or churches (Methodist) or dental clinics or a whole bunch of other essential jobs, so anybody who can manage to avoid freaking out over working in a town full of literally identical families can do pretty well for themselves. And, again, the Huxley families are all pleasant folks who don’t cause trouble.

Which is good, because every Huxley shares an awareness of what every other Huxley would do in any particular situation that borders on telepathic and/or precognitive.  It’s also safe to assume that if one of them gets mad, then every other Huxley of the same age and sex would get mad at the same thing, too. And if they all get mad, or infuriated, then their possible coordinated response becomes terrifying to contemplate.  So it’s best not to let that hypothetical problem come up in the first place, then. The monkey doesn’t have to poke the strange thing with the stick, remember?

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