A person, who is kept a secret for some reason by someone, be it by their parents, their government, or themselves, from any age, usually birth.
During the story the heroes would discover the hiding person, or the hidden person could be the protagonist
themselves, actively trying to stay hidden or trying to escape.
The person could also be an antagonist
, if hidden away for being evil in some way.
Supertrope to Batman in My Basement
, Madwoman in the Attic
and Hidden Backup Prince
. Contrast Un person
, the inversion of this trope.
As this trope often deals with a Reveal
, there will be Unmarked Spoilers Ahead
Anime & Manga
- Yasu from Umineko no Naku Koro ni is kept secret by different groups for different reasons. Natsuhi and Kinzo keep Yasu secret because Yasu is Kinzo's bastard child, and Natsuhi threw Yasu off a cliff. Genji and Kumasawa, on the other hand, keep Yasu's existence secret partially at Kinzo's wishes, but they keep secret even from him and Natsuhi that Yasu survived the cliff fall because they think that Kinzo might eventually fall in love with Yasu, as he did Yasu's mother, Beatrice Ushiromiya.
- In One Piece, Portgas D. Ace's mother Rouge held him for twenty months in her womb just to make sure the public won't know he's the son of her lover, Pirate King Gold Roger. Because of the stigma that a pirate's son will Turn Out Like His Father let alone him being the son of Roger and that the Marines, after Roger's death, started a witch-hunt of every woman ever affiliated with him, searching for the possibility of an offspring. This costs her her life.
- As a favor of Roger himself to his rival, Vice Admiral Garp, the latter also tried to keep Ace hidden and was there when Rouge gave birth to him. Then he brought Ace to his hometown in East Blue and got Curly Dadan to raise him (along with the young Luffy) with the intention of making them Marine officers. Ace himself also tends to go by his mother's maiden surname rather than his dad's.
- In the Slasher Movie Humongous a woman named Ida was raped and kept the child born of the rape hidden away...until she dies.
- In The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Judge Frollo actively tries to keep Quasimodo hidden from the rest of the public and makes him stay in the tower by convincing him that the world is a cruel place and he is safer in the bell tower. Of course, this only works up until the Feast Of Fools, and stories are still told about Quasimodo, making him legendary despite the fact only Frollo and the Archdeacon really knew he existed.
- The Man in the Iron Mask in ''The Vicomte de Bragelonne'' is a twin brother of King Louis XIV, who has been kept locked away all his life so he couldn't usurp his brother's throne. Of course, he is freed and does just that in the course of the novel.
- During the new series for Doctor Who, the titular character encounters a woman named "River Song". His relationship is a secret from him because it gets formed in his future. As the series progressed, he learned more and more about her. A pivotal reveal was that she was also a Person Kept Secret from her parents, and the Doctor was instrumental in rescuing her from her kidnappers. Her real name is Melody Pond, the daughter of Rory and Amy Pond, his first companions after meeting her for the first time.
- Jade Empire: The Big Bad secreted away and kept the last of the Spirit Monks hidden from the world and his siblings while he concocted a master plan that would involve using the said monk as means to achieve the title of Emperor, and ultimately, godhood and immortal life.
- In AdventureQuest Worlds, Sepulchure, the Doom Knight and overlord of evil, kept his daughter Gravelyn secret for years, with her existence only becoming common knowledge after his death and her ascension to the throne of the Shadowscythe Empire. The reason for all this secrecy isn't known until the second part of the Doomwood saga where it's revealed that she is the Champion of Light, the only thing keeping the Realm of Darkness from destroying the world, and the reason that Sepulchure didn't kill her was out of love for both her and her mother Lynaria.
- In a Treehouse of Horror episode of The Simpsons Homer & Marge keep Bart's Evil Twin Hugo hidden and locked up in the attic.
- Gangster kingpin Riff Raff plots the heist of the Hopeless Diamond in the Underdog story arc "From Hopeless To Helpless." Riff Raff brings along a small fellow cloaked from head to ankles, with two eyeholes in the fabric. This character's purpose is described only as "just in case." He is later revealed to be Tap-Tap, a gem cutter that happens to be a doppelganger for Underdog.
- In Avatar: The Last Airbender, Toph was this until meeting Aang. Her overprotective parents kept her locked inside the grounds of their home (although she was able to sneak out to work as a wrestler).
- The Thomas the Tank Engine special Blue Mountain Mystery revolves around the Narrow Gauge engines keeping a lost engine, Luke, secret from the Thin Controller (due to supposedly killing another engine via an accident said engine was found and repaired as Victor, who resolved everything when he found out). How this is managed isn't quite elaborated upon, since the engines (including Luke himself) are pretty much completely reliant on workmen to function.