Created By: Sibuna on July 27, 2013 Last Edited By: Aubren on May 3, 2016

Secretly related

Two characters are related, but keep their relation a secret to everyone else.

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Trope
This is when two characters are related, but nobody else is aware. Maybe one character is good and wants to hide their relation to the Big Bad or vise versa. Maybe one of them is The Mole and can't reveal their relation in order to earn the trust of the Hero and his friends. Or maybe they are just really distant.

Either way, this trope is when during the story two characters are revealed to the audience and the other characters to be related in some way.

The inverse of tropes like Luke, I Am Your Father, Luke, You Are My Father and Separated at Birth in that the characters are aware of their relation, while nobody else is.

Compare Resemblance Reveal

As a reveal trope, Beware of Unmarked Spoilers.

Examples:

Anime and Manga
  • The Monkey family of One Piece, even when two of them are notorious criminals, really are distant. Up until the end of Enies Lobby arc, very few (if at all) know that legendary Marine officer Garp, the Revolutionary Dragon and Straw-Hat Luffy are related by blood - and Garp himself accidentally reveals this (while acting like it's not a big deal).
    • Also the Gol (nee Portgas) family. This one's justified since Gol D. Roger is the Pirate King and that his wife tried her hardest to hide his son's identity to the world. Said son, Ace, also goes by his mother's maiden surname, rather than his dad's like his mom intended to (partly because Ace hates his father).

Film
  • At the end of the film of Maverick, it turns out that Cooper and Maverick are father and son.

Literature
  • In the Deryni novels by Katherine Kurtz, Alaric Morgan and Duncan McLain are actually first cousins, and they reveal this only to very close friends. In the prequel novel In the King's Service, Alyce de Corwyn learns she has a twin sister (Lady Vera Howard) after her father's death: the girls' Deryni parents knew they were expecting twins, and they passed off one of the girls as the offspring of a human couple (friends of theirs) in hopes of protecting at least one of their children from anti-Deryni persecution. The persecution threat continues into the lives of their sons; Duncan becomes a priest despite canon law that bars Deryni from the priesthood (the penalty is death by burning at the stake). Morgan, like his mother, is known to be a Deryni, so revealing the full degree of their blood ties would be dangerous for Duncan.

Live-Action Television
  • In Tower Prep, In one of the episodes around the finale, it is revealed that CJ and the Headmaster are daughter and father, and he made her tell him information about the planned escape from the school.
  • Similar to the above, in House of Anubis Mr.Sweet is revealed as Eddie's father, after Patricia overhears a conversation between them. Later, the whole school finds out by accident when Patricia accidentally turns on the intercom and reveals it to everyone while talking to Eddie. The secrecy was mostly because they were distant, as Mr.Sweet was a Disappeared Dad for a while. The rest of the season, they attempt to become closer, once the secret is out.

Professional Wrestling
  • For a long time the marriage of Triple H and Stephanie McMahon was not officially acknowledged, until the leadup to a WrestleMania match between H and Randy Orton. Triple H called it the "worst-kept secret in wrestling."
  • WCW Crockett circa 1987: Jimmy Garvin and Ron Garvin reveal that they're brothers, Jimmy turns face, and they feud with the Midnight Express and the Four Horsemen. Up until the reveal they didn't acknowledge that they were related even though they had the same last name. They had also worked as brothers in other promotions in the past, but in the olden days fans in one territory usually didn't know about things going on somewhere else. (In reality they're Unrelated Brothers: Ron was actually Jimmy's stepfather.)

Western Animation
  • In the Rugrats Back Door Pilot for All Grown Up!, Angelica convinces everyone Pickles is a common last name, and she is in no way related to the younger, dorkier Tommy. A bit of Dramatic Irony in play as the fact they were cousins in the parent show was well known.
Community Feedback Replies: 25
  • July 27, 2013
    DragonQuestZ
    A the end of the film of Maverick, it turns out that Cooper and Maverick are father and son.
  • July 27, 2013
    DAN004
    • The Monkey family of One Piece, even when two of them are notorious criminals, really are distant. Up until the end of Enies Lobby arc, very few (if at all) know that legendary Marine officer Garp, the Revolutionary Dragon and Straw-Hat Luffy are related by blood - and Garp himself accidentally reveals this (while acting like it's not a big deal).
      • Also the Gol (nee Portgas) family. This one's justified since Gol D. Roger is the Pirate King and that his wife tried her hardest to hide his son's identity to the world. Said son, Ace, also goes by his mother's maiden surname, rather than his dad's like his mom intended to (partly because Ace hates his father).
  • July 27, 2013
    paycheckgurl
    In the Rugrats Back Door Pilot for All Grown Up, Angelica conviences everyone Pickles is a common last name, and she is in no way related to the younger, dorkier Tommy. A bit of Dramatic Irony in play as the fact they were cousins in the parent show was well known.
  • July 27, 2013
    randomsurfer
    Professional Wrestling:
    • For a long time the marriage of Triple H and Stephanie Mc Mahon was not officially acknowledged, until the leadup to a Wrestle Mania match between H and Randy Orton. Triple H called it the "worst-kept secret in wrestling."
    • WCW Crockett circa 1987: Jimmy Garvin and Ron Garvin reveal that they're brothers, Jimmy turns face, and they feud with the Midnight Express and the Four Horsemen. Up until the reveal they didn't acknowledge that they were related even though they had the same last name. They had also worked as brothers in other promotions in the past, but in the olden days fans in one territory usually didn't know about things going on somewhere else. (In reality they're Unrelated Brothers: Ron was actually Jimmy's stepfather.)
  • July 28, 2013
    Koveras
  • July 28, 2013
    xanderiskander
    There's a YKTTW very similar to this here. Might want to check it out because at the very least they're probably related/ have a bit of overlap.
  • July 28, 2013
    Sibuna
    Oh yeah, they are pretty similar, the only difference is that mine is purposefully kept as a secret. Good to know.
  • July 30, 2013
    Sibuna
    YKTTW Bump
  • July 30, 2013
    Koveras
    Compare also Separated At Birth.
  • July 30, 2013
    Sibuna
    I think it would be more of a contrast, unless the characters are aware they were siblings when they met.
  • July 30, 2013
    henke37
  • July 30, 2013
    Sibuna
    ^ Could you add more details? It's a no-context example. Atleast just add when it was revealed.
  • August 1, 2013
    69BookWorM69
    Literature
    • In the Deryni novels by Katherine Kurtz, Alaric Morgan and Duncan McLain are actually first cousins, and they reveal this only to very close friends. In the prequel novel In the King's Service, Alyce de Corwyn learns she has a twin sister (Lady Vera Howard) after her father's death: the girls' Deryni parents knew they were expecting twins, and they passed off one of the girls as the offspring of a human couple (friends of theirs) in hopes of protecting at least one of their children from anti-Deryni persecution. The persecution threat continues into the lives of their sons; Duncan becomes a priest despite canon law that bars Deryni from the priesthood (the penalty is death by burning at the stake). Morgan, like his mother, is known to be a Deryni, so revealing the full degree of their blood ties would be dangerous for Duncan.
  • August 4, 2013
    Sibuna
    YKTTW bump
  • May 1, 2016
    Pichu-kun
    • In Jem, Stormer (Mary Philips) of The Misfits is the younger sister of Craig Philips. Craig tried out to be the new drummer for Jem And The Holograms but failed to win the competition, though he ended up becoming the long-distance boyfriend of Aja. The Misfits are the enemies and rivals of Jem And The Holograms. Stormer's bandmates quickly learn they're related however Jem And The Holograms don't learn for several episodes later. It bombs when Aja thinks Stormer and Craig are dating and gets mad. When she learns their true relation, she's not too bugged. The Jem And The Hologram averts this scenario as off-screen the siblings mention their girlfriends (Aja for Craig, Kimber for Stormer) to each other and when Craig meets Kimber he recognizes her as Stormer's girlfriend and mentions it. Aja and Kimber didn't know realize they were dating siblings but take it well.
  • May 1, 2016
    DAN004
    Wait, I just found Secret Relationship.
  • May 2, 2016
    Pichu-kun
    ^ That's a romantic trope.
  • May 2, 2016
    Koveras
    • In TV Tropes The Webcomic, the recurring characters Ms. Naf and Betrand Ayers are actually the protagonist's parents, but decide to hide it from him for very convoluted reasons.
  • May 2, 2016
    Argon2
    Visual Novels
    • In Fate Stay Night, Rin doesn't tell anyone she's Sakura's sister because 1), she has no intention of actually being one, and 2), it is quite possible that she'll have to execute Sakura before the Grail War is over. (The War is fought by mages of different families, and because Sakura was adopted into another family, their situation has the potential to get very painful very fast. Which it does.)

    Video Games
    • In Nine Hours Nine Persons Nine Doors, the siblings Aoi/Santa and Akane/June keep it a secret because part of their plan involves duping the other players into believing that Aoi took Akane hostage. If their relation was publicly known, people would suspect they were working together (and Ace might have recognized their assassination attempt in time to survive it).
  • May 2, 2016
    Argon2
    Visual Novels
    • In Fate Stay Night, Rin doesn't tell anyone she's Sakura's sister because 1), she has no intention of actually being one, and 2), it is quite possible that she'll have to execute Sakura before the Grail War is over. (The War is fought by mages of different families, and because Sakura was adopted into another family, their situation has the potential to get very painful very fast. Which it does.)

    Video Games
    • In Nine Hours Nine Persons Nine Doors, the siblings Aoi/Santa and Akane/June keep it a secret because part of their plan involves duping the other players into believing that Aoi took Akane hostage. If their relation was publicly known, people would suspect they were working together (and Ace might have recognized their assassination attempt in time to survive it).
  • May 2, 2016
    poptartspower
    Would the Huntsman leader and the Huntsgirl from American Dragon Jake Long count? He is her (adoptive) father and they both know it, but they never reveal it until late in the series.
  • May 2, 2016
    Aubren
    Fixed a typo, don't mind me.
  • May 2, 2016
    Pichu-kun
    ^ Sounds like it. I haven't seen the series in forever so was it revealed Rose is adopted late into the series or that she's his daughter? I remember knowing they were father and daughter in season 1.
  • May 3, 2016
    poptartspower
    ^ What about if the audience knows theyre related but not other characters? I think their relation was revealed to the audience early on, but Jake found out late in the series.
  • May 3, 2016
    DAN004
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=8nhpzcp8v84pzyijq3znai22