A modified studio apartment that includes a bedroom, a sitting area, and a kitchenette.
An insect similar to the common fly.
Friendliness and camaraderie.
A clone who acts as a nurse and companion to other clones who are undergoing their donations. Clones become carers through an application process; it is unclear whether being a carer actually results in deferring donations.
Students at Hailsham have few possessions, so they put great care into their "collections"––artwork that they buy from other students at the quarterly Exchanges.
A euphemism that the clones use for death. Most clones "complete" after their third or fourth organ donation.
After graduating from Hailsham around age 16, the students are sent to live in the Cottages, where young adult clones are allowed to live freely until their donations are scheduled to begin. This is where Kathy and her friends meet non-Hailsham clones for the first time.
The training that donors must undergo to become carers.
A class where older Hailsham students role-play situations they will encounter in the outside world, such as ordering in a restaurant or talking to a police officer.
Most of the characters in Never Let Me Go are clones designed to become "donors"––that is, organ donors. When they reach young adulthood, they are forced to begin a series of organ donations that will eventually kill them.
The students at Hailsham are encouraged to create art. Each quarter, they bring their artwork to a special event called an Exchange where they can trade their pieces for those done by other students.
Growing up at Hailsham, the students' best artwork was taken away to a mysterious "Gallery" off campus. We later learn that the Gallery was created by a group of activists, including Madame, to demonstrate to the public that the clones are human beings with souls and thus should not have their organs harvested.
Refers to the adults who run Hailsham and act as both teachers and parent-figures to the children there.
Juniors and Seniors
The children at Hailsham are divided into three classes: Infants, Juniors, and Seniors. Kathy is "thirteen or fourteen" in her Senior 3 year, which suggests that students become seniors in what corresponds to sixth grade in the United States.
A British word for a truck.
The clones use this slang term to refer to "normal" people who could potentially be the "originals" from which they were modeled.
The buildings where clones are held between donations. Some of them, like Kingsfield, are repurposed hotels or "holiday camps," while others, like the one in Dover, seem to have been built expressly for the recovery of donors.
A British game similar to baseball.
At Hailsham, the periodic Sales are the students' only connection to the outside world. At these events, they can use tokens earned for good artwork to buy toys, clothes, and knickknacks. It is unclear where the items at the Sales come from, although they are pre-used which suggests that they are charitable donations from non-clones.
British slang for heavy kissing.
Never Let Me Go Questions and Answers
The Question and Answer section for Never Let Me Go is a great
resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.
Ruth is important to Kathy because she's one of her only friends from Hailsham which means Ruth is also one of her links to remind her of Hailsham once they move to the cottages. This also answers your question of why Kathy makes excuses for Ruth....
The characters in Never Let Me Go place a cultural premium on conformity––for example, Kathy repeatedly emphasizes how "typical" she is, and Ruth blatantly copies the gestures of older students at the Cottages. The...