My cousin Wayne and I are on our way to our grandpa's house when we hear the yelling.
"Hey cutie. What's a sexy girl like you doing with that chink?"
It's best to ignore them. Sticks and stones and all that. I try to will Wayne along, to not make eye contact. I love my cousin, but he's got the survival skills of a lemming at full moon.
"I'm talking to you! Ching chong! No speakse Inglish?"
Wayne stops, and I can practically feel the tension humming through him. Not again.
When you're the only white girl in a Chinese family, out of place doesn't even begin to describe it. Most of the time, it doesn't really register, you know? You're so used to them that they're just sort of there.
But of course, other people don't see it that way. And that's how it always starts.
"Don't," I hiss to Wayne, trying to pull him along. "Just ignore those idiots. C'mon. We're almost at gung gung's house." Gung gung is what you call your mother's dad in Cantonese.
"I bet the bitch is only with that nerd for his money."
Wayne stops and turns around. Oh please, let's just go.
But it's no use. He may look like your typical nerd, but he's got this chivalrous side that makes him think he could be my knight in plaid shirt armour.
We stop and I take stock of the inevitable.
The yeller is your typical redneck hotshot, a rich white kid dressed in gangsta attire. He's got spiky blond hair and this gross pimple right in the middle of his chin. His cronies are all smoking and laughing.
"Ooh, watch out," Pimple Boy says, pretending to cower away from Wayne, who's going red in the face. "Chink thinks he's Bruce Lee!"
This prompts more laughter from the group as well as some Bruce Lee-type howling. Because you see, Wayne's an el primo nerd, from his tucked-in plaid shirt to his oversized glasses. He's lanky and quiet and smart. But he's also my cousin. And if there's one thing that will get him riled up (seriously, there probably is only one thing), it's someone dissing his family.
"Leave my cousin alone," he says, his voice really calm and mature. Too bad this sort of thing never works on bullies.
"Dude," the leader of the doofus gang says, almost doubling over in fits of hysterical laughter. "You need to get your glasses checked, man."
Weirdos calling us names doesn't really bother me so much. I mean, I get it all the time when I'm out with any of my cousins. Comes with the territory of being the White Girl in the Wong family.
Yeah, I don't think it's that funny either. My friends Fazza and Charlie think it's absolutely hilarious.
"Don't call her names," Wayne goes on, completely talking over the idiot's head.
"Or what? You're gonna lay your badass kung fu moves on us?"
More Bruce Lee howling from the doofus crew. I roll my eyes and step forward.
Wayne's two years older than me, but he's lanky and Chinese, whereas I'm white and freckled and a bit on the, errh, healthy side, thanks to a fondness for all things dairy. I reckon I've got about ten… five kilos on Wayne.
Which still brings me up a head short of the leader of the gang. But damn it, they're not gonna shove my favourite cousin around on my shift!
"For your information," I tell Pimple Boy in my best prissy private school voice, "Wayne's my cousin, not my boyfriend. But even if he wasn't, he would make a much better boyfriend than a loser like you!"
I stab a finger in his chest for emphasis and he takes a step back, looking baffled. Uh-oh. That might not have been the brightest thing to do. While his cronies hoot with laughter, jock-boy looks like his head is about to explode.
"Oh yeah," he says. Clearly he's the king of the witty repartee.
"Well, maybe you just need a real man to cure you of your yellow fever."
He grabs his package in an unmistakable gesture. Oh, gross.
Meanwhile, one of the other guys walks over to Wayne and shoves him.
"Yo Chink. Show us your karate moves."
Major eye-roll alert.
"Bruce Lee did kung fu, dumbass," one of the other idiots tells the shover.
"You're the dumbass," shover replies, shoving Wayne again.
"Hey," Wayne says, pushing his glasses back up his nose.
You're saying some things twice, which drives me crazy. It's one of the hardest things to copy edit for, so if 750 words has four instances, I'd be terrified of what I'd find in 50 pages.
I liked the comic touch in your hook, I think you've got a good idea, but you've got to whip the writing into shape before I'm going to ask for pages.