By Eva Chu
(Oxford word) Words checked =  Words in Oxford 3000â„˘ = [92%]
Written by Eva Chu of E4A Instructor: Kenneth M. Smith Wenzao Ursuline College of Languages Kaohsiung, Taiwan June 2013
Table of Contents About the author…………….……....p.4 Characters……………………….……….p.5 Ch.1 -Life in the orphanage…..p.6 Ch.2 –New Home………………..…p.15 Ch.3 -Reunion……………....………..p.27 Ch.4 –Protecting the black..….p.36 Ch.5 –Broken Friendship……..p.42 Ch.6 –Dilemma………....................p.50 Ch.7 –Boomeranged………….….p.59
About the Author
Eva Chu is the author of the book Cotton Candy. She was born in Kaohsiung, Taiwan in 1994. Currently, she studies at Wenzao Ursuline College of Languages, where she majors in English and minor in German. Cotton Candy is her first book which she wrote in 2013. She has always been fascinated with discrimination topic, so this is why she created this story. Hope the readers like it. 4
Characters David: The leader of the story. He is a white boy who has a sense of justice. Zanko: David’s best friend, who is an introverted but determined black boy. Sister Melinda: A Sister who work in a Christian orphanage. Kim: The woman who adopt David. Shelly: The other kid Kim adopts. Kevin: The gardener in Kim’s house. Mr. Martin: David’s high school teacher. Maggie: Mr. Martin’s daughter. 5
Chapter.1 Life in the Orphanage
“David, sweetheart, you should finish your food on your plate, or I won’t give you any dessert.” That’s Sister Melinda. She was a patient old woman who always wore a smile on her face. My best friend, Zanko, and I loved her very much, and we knew she loved us, too. She spent most of her time praying, and she asked all the 6
children in the orphanage to do it every night before bed. “What’s the dessert today?” asked Zanko. “It’s your favorite cotton candy.” “Dadi has no cotton candy. Dadi has no cotton candy.” He called me Dadi because he said it sounded better. “Stop teasing your friend. Listen, you try to help David finish his food. I have to go take care of other kids.” She left after she finished her words. 7
“You’ve got to eat those carrots, but as I know, you can’t finish them all. Give me half of them, Dadi baby.” He knew what was good for me and what was not. I liked him very much because he always supported me in a funny way. We had fights sometimes, but it was just a way we show our friendship at this age. He is a five-year-old boy, same as me. Our parents all died because of the war. It was a terrible war, man. 8
We didnâ€™t know what was it about, we just knew that Sister Melinda never talked about it in front of us. We had a lot on common, but only one thing. The skin color. His skin color was the color of chocolate milk. I always thought that he might taste like chocolate when I was little. And me? I was as white as paper. Once, I asked Sister Melinda what was the war about. She didnâ€™t answer 9
but told me, “My dear, remember this. Everyone is God’s child, everyone is the same. We should love each other no matter whom he is.” I nodded without a word. I wish I’d never known the truth.
Three years passed. One day, a couple came in. They looked around for about ten minutes, then I saw them pointing at Zanko and speaking something to Sister Melinda at the 10
same time. I could see their mouths moving, but I couldnâ€™t hear what they were saying. It was too noisy. All in a sudden, I wept. There was a voice deep inside of me which I believed was telling me that they wanted Zanko to be their new child. This happened to some other kids before. Sister Melinda walked toward Zanko and leaded him to the couple. She suddenly noticed me and came up to me. Before she could touch my shoulders, I screamed 11
and shouted, “Why Zanko? Why don’t they choose other kids? He is my best friend! I don’t want him to leave! Can’t you do something to change their mind?” I couldn’t stop crying, I could see the tears in her eyes, too. She embraced me tightly and said that I knew it was the rule. She promised I would see Zanko again one day. Outside the orphanage, Zanko and I hugged each other for like a minute or two. He cried when he saw the tear 12
drops on my cheeks. We promised that we would never forget each other. Before they leave, Sister Melinda gave Zanko a big bag full of cotton candy. After that crimson, ugly looking car took Zanko away, I ran to my bed and started crying again. Life without Zanko was so boring. Three days later, same thing happened to me, and these three days were like three years to me. I suffered. 13
As I was leaving, Sister Melinda did the same thing to me. She gave me a big bag full of cotton candy. Saying goodbye to her was as hard as saying goodbye to Zanko. I always thought Sister Melinda as my biological mother. The feeling of being an orphan was even stronger. And now, there was a new couple waiting to be my new parents.
Chapter.2 New Home My new home was huge and warm. After we got off the vehicle, my new mother, Kim showed me around the house. I could see fancy kitchen with lovely lily on the dining table. There were huge bedrooms, too. I guessed I got brought to a rich family. At last, she showed me the back yard, but it was more like a secret garden to me. The door was so narrow that only one 15
person could go through at a time. When I looked into the back yard, I was shocked. It was such a beautiful and lovely place that I thought I was in paradise, colorful flowers and singing birds were everywhere. And, to my surprise, I was not the only child! There was a little girl reading books under a tree. She looked up and stared at me for a second, then buried in her book again. She seemed to be the same age as 16
me. I wondered whether she was this couple’s daughter or another orphan they adopted. Kim seemed to know what was on my mind. She told me that the girl’s name was Shelly, and she was an orphan, too. She joined this family a week before me. Suddenly, a man appeared at the door. He was not Kim’s husband who drove us home. “He is the gardener, Kevin.” Kim told me. “I can’t find the big scissors which I 17
used to cut the bushes. Do you see them?” asked Kevin. Then, he noticed me. “So, this is the new boy. What’s his name?” “He’s David. I guess my husband took your scissors. You can go ask him.” And Kevin walked into the house.
Life here was quite comfortable, but a little bit boring. My new father was always out at work, so Kim took care of almost everything in the house 18
except the back yard. That was Kevin’s job. Shelly never talked to me until one day I found a gravestone behind the bushes. She was reading under the same tree. As I was walking toward the gravestone, she said suddenly, “That’s Kim’s first husband.” “What happened? She never told me before.” “He died during the war.” “Long time ago, isn’t it?” “Only three years ago. It was the 19
same war which killed my parents.” Then she closed her book and stood up staring at me. “Shut your mouth, or bugs will fly in.” So I shut my mouth. Jesus. It was the same war. “Kim’s husband was killed by the slave they hired.” “Kim told you all this?” I asked. I was surprised that she knew so much. “No. I read her diary when she was 20
asleep. I didn’t do it on purpose, I was just curious.” “Do you know what was the war about?” “Let me show you something.” She said and walked into the house. I followed her behind. Both Kim and her husband were not at home, and Kevin was sleeping on the coach. She led me to Kim’s room and showed me some pictures in Kim’s diary, besides the pictures, there were some notes. Kim’s 21
hand writing was pretty good. “Wow, I don’t know you can read so well!” I said to her. “I can only understand those pictures and a little bit of words, like black, white, war, killed, died.” I listened and looked at the pictures in silence. “Do you know what disgusting mean?” I asked. “Perhaps, it means dirty. Yuk. Like the blacks.” She said in a calm voice. 22
“What? No! Blacks are good! Blacks are great! Do you know my best friend, Zanko is black?” I yelled. “You’d better not let the adults hear this. As you can see in Kim’s diary, black and white people are now enemies.” I was confused and sad. “In the adult world, stupid things happen more often than our children’s world. I don’t hate the black, but in order to avoid troubles, I pretend I do.” 23
Then she put the diary back and walked away. I stood there. I was speechless. I had been a black’s best friend since I had memories. In Shelly’s description, Zanko’s parents and my parents might be fighting each other. Sister Melinda’s words suddenly appeared in my head. We should love each other no matter whom he is. Now I know why she never talked about the war in front of me and Zanko. I kept repeat this sentence until a door bell 24
woke me up. Kim was back, so I quickly ran out of her room. Every weekday, there was a teacher who came to our house and taught Shelly and me. He always focused on telling us the war which happened three years ago. Before, I would like to know more about the war, but now, I wished Iâ€™d never known it. The truth was so ugly. The teacher kept criticized the black. One time I almost shouted back, 25
then I remembered what Shelly told me before. “If you don’t want to get into troubles, just pretend you hate the black.” She told me once, and I never forget it all my lifetime.
Time flew. Nine years passed. Shelly and I went to different high schools. All these years I never forget Zanko. I kept wondering where he was and what he was doing now. Sister Melinda promised I would meet Zanko again one day. I kept asking myself when the day would come. One day, I was walking around the 27
campus after lunch, and I saw a couple of slaves working under the cotton trees. One of them seems very familiar to me, so I walked closer. I stunned. It really was Zanko! I almost cried out! His facial features didnâ€™t change much, but he seemed as thin as a lath and as if his life had been full of grief since he left the orphanage. I came up to him and said hello. I was waiting for his reply. An enthusiastic one. However, he just stood there and stared at me like I 28
was a stranger. What’s wrong? I wondered. Did I recognize the wrong person? It couldn’t be. I was very sure that this person standing in front of me was Zanko. “Don’t you remember me, Zanko?” I hesitated. “Who are you? My new master?” he was totally confused. “No! What master? I’m Dadi! Your best friend!” still, no reply. Then I 29
quickly took out a bag full of cotton candy from my backpack and handed to him. “Now, do you remember me? Our favorite food was cotton candy during the time in the orphanage!” “Oh! Heaven! I can’t believe it’s you!” he shouted with surprise. I opened my arms and about to give him a big hug. He suddenly pushed me away anxiously. I was shocked for a second, and then I remember the ugly 30
truth. I felt terribly sick. “Sorry, I can’t. I’m not even supposed to talk to white people like you. I do miss you, miss the day we’ve been together before, and also very glad to see you again, but we are no longer kids anymore. Everything has changed…” I could see the tears running down his face. It was the first time I hate this world so much. 31
It was the first time I wanted to break the rules. It was the first time I wanted to get rid of everything just to hug Zanko once. Brutal facts were devouring me. I looked at him and said in a chocked voice, â€œI know everything is not what we knew when we were kids, but the truth that you are my best friend will never change. I hope you understandâ€Śâ€? sorrow showed in his 32
eyes. “I’m a slave now, and my name is not Zanko anymore. I’m Tom.” He wiped away the tears on his face. “I have to get back to work now before anyone could see us talking. I don’t want to get you into troubles.” Then he turned away and kept collecting the cottons on the trees. I put the cotton candy on the ground where Zanko just stand on. I walked away with silence and deep sadness. 33
That night, I sat by my desk in my dormitory room, doing nothing but reminisced everything that happened this afternoon. I just couldnâ€™t get it out of my head. The way Zanko looked at me was indelible. I decided to write to the government. I didnâ€™t tell anyone but Shelly, so I called her and told her my plan, but she said it was a waste of time. The government would just throw that kind of paper away. After a 34
few weeks of hard works, I proved that Shelly was right. I felt depressed because I really didn’t know what else I could do. Fight for the black? Me? That’s a stupid idea. I didn’t even know how to fight, and I was a peace lover. I visited Shelly several times and hope she could help. However, she was totally not interesting in helping me.
Chapter.4 Protecting the Black
Another week passed, I wanted to talk to Zanko again, so I walked toward the slaves under the cotton trees. I touched him on his shoulder and told him it was me. My heart felt like dying when I saw his reaction. He just walked away! Neither did he talked to me nor looked at me. I cried out, â€œMan, this is how you 36
treat me! I tried so hard to solve the problem between us, and this is what I should deserve from you?” I was so upset when I said those words. I even shake his body. “What do you know? I was protecting us! We can’t talk in public don’t you get it?” he shouted back and pushed me. While we were pushing, my teacher, Mr. Martin saw all this. “Hey! Leave David alone, you black freak!” then Mr. Martin grab Zanko by 37
his tattered shirt and punch his nose. Zanko fell on the ground and felt dizzy, his nose was bleeding badly. “No! Why did you do that?” “And you, young man! No more talking to the black, got it?” my teacher didn’t let me finish my words. “But…” “There’s no but! What’s the problem with you? Come to my office right now, and I mean it!” he didn’t even wait for my reply and pulled me 38
toward his office. I wanted to make eye contact with Zanko, but he looked away. In the office, Mr. Martin kept asking me whatâ€™s wrong with me. He just couldnâ€™t believe I tried to protect a black who just pushed me. It was a really big mistake that I told Mr. Martin Zanko was my friend. He stared at me like an angry lion. He told me in a very low voice that if I still wanted to be friends with the 39
black, then I would be collecting cottons outside instead of studying forever. I just couldnâ€™t believe it. We were so good when we were kids! How come things turned out to be like this? My wish about seeing Zanko once again did come true, but it was not the way I wanted. All of a sudden, I felt so lonely. I felt like nobody understood me, even Shelly. Sister Melinda already passed away five 40
years ago. God. I admitted I was not a very sincere Christian, but there was no other name I could run to whenever I had problems. I prayed almost every night. Several months later, still, anything had yet to change. It seemed like God didnâ€™t answer my prayers. I was kind of tired of all this. Sometimes, there was a voice deep inside of me telling me to give up. But I didnâ€™t. 41
Chapter.5 Broken Friendship
One foggy night, I walked home after school. The sun went down very early these days. When I was about to open the door, I saw a shadow moving behind the trees next to my house. I thought it was a thief or something and was about to call the neighbor. Then Zanko’s face showed up. “Why are you here?” I was 42
surprised to see him. “I have some problems. Can I bother you for a minute?” “Sure, come in first!” I opened the door for him. In the living room, I told him to sit down on the coach and waited for me. Then I went into the kitchen and prepared some cookies and red wine. When I walked into the living room with the desserts, I saw Zanko walking intensive around the living room. 43
“It seems like you really have some problems. You can tell me, and I will try to help you.” Then I told him to sit down again. “It was…well, I fell in love with a girl, and she’s white. Her name is Maggie.” “Maggie? I know her! She’s Mr. Martin’s daughter!” “You mean the man who punched me several months ago because I was talking to you?” then he picked a 44
cookie and put it in his mouth. “Now I know your problem…” Then we were both silence. “I know I can’t, but I did. I did fell in love with her. There was one day she asked me to bring down her hat which flew into the cotton tree. I helped her, and she thanked me with a smile. It was like an angel, man.” I listened. “And then, without knowing where my courage comes from, I asked for 45
her name. She said she was Maggie and left.” Silence again. “Do you think there is a way I can help?” I asked after I had a sup from the wine glass. “I wish there is. The point is, she’ll never know my feelings for her. Even if I have a chance, which is nearly impossible, to confess to her, she…no, that’s stupid. I think I should just give up.” Zanko didn’t look up at me. “Maybe she’s different. Maybe 46
she’ll like you. Maybe. You can try to win her attention.” I suggested “Me? A slave? To win her attention? You’re laughing at me, aren’t you?” This time he looked up at me. “No, I’m not! You can’t control yourself whether to fell in love with somebody or not. You’ll never know what will happen next! Who says a black slave can’t fell in love, or can’t be loved by others?” “The whole world says that.” 47
“Don’t be so stubborn! Of course you can! Have you forgotten Sister Melinda’s words?” “That’s stupid. She’s white.” “Now, you are the one who’s laughing at yourself! If you keep being so difficult, to communicate there’s no way I will help you.” “Thanks a lot.” He stood up and walked toward the front door. Before he opened the door, he said without turning around, “I mean the treats on 48
the table. By the way, our friendship is over. Bye, David.” Then he left. I sat there quietly and didn’t know why I always mess things up. I should have done a better way to control my emotions. There’s nothing I could do well. I got angry is because Zanko already give himself up. He shouldn’t have done that. Although I just said I wouldn’t help him, I decided to.
The week after, I started to make friends with Maggie. She and I are in the same math class. I wanted to know more about her in order to tell Zanko what’s she’s like. I met Maggie at the cafeteria one day. She sat by her own eating salad. I walked up and asked, “Would you mind if I sit here?” “Not at all!” She smiled. It was a 50
very lovely smile. “So, what’s up? You just eat salad for lunch?” I took a chair and sat down. “Yes, I’m on a diet.” “Why? Because your boyfriend ask you to?” I wasn’t sure if she had a boyfriend or not, it’s just another way to asked whether she had one. “Very funny. I don’t have a boyfriend now.” “You must be kidding. A gorgeous lady like you doesn’t have one?” 51
Actually I was happy to hear that. “My Mr. Right just hasn’t shown up yet.” She put the last tomato in her mouth. “What kind of guy do you prefer?” “Why do you ask?” “Well, nothing. Just want to know more about you.” “You like me?” she chuckled. “Of course! I mean, you know, like friends? By the way, do you know Zanko?” I was kind of nervous, so I 52
change the topic. “Zanko? No, I don’t. Is he in the same math class with us?” “Nah, he’s a slave in our school.” I put more ketchup on my hamburgers. “Of course I don’t know any slaves! Wait…there was…” I let her think for a second. “Do you still remember a guy who helped you brought down your hat from the trees few weeks ago?” “Oh yes, I remember that. You 53
know him?” she asked. “Yes. His name is Zanko.” “How did you know him?” No doubt she was surprised. “He’s just a slave who used to work in my hometown, and my dad was his master.” I didn’t know why I lied to her. “So, why did you mention him?” “Nothing. Forget about it. What class do you have next?” “Spanish.” “Ok, see you.” Then she left the 54
cafeteria. The more I knew about Maggie, the more I liked her. Within a month, I fell in love with her. â€œWhat on earth are you doing, David? You are supposed to help Zanko!â€? I said to myself. There were several times I saw Maggie talking to Zanko, but they never talked very long, only a few minutes. It seemed like she was really a different girl. Neither did she not 55
afraid of getting into troubles, nor did she not reject the black. I was supposed to be happy when I saw them talking. However, I was surprised that I was a little jealous. Sometimes, I even had the impulse to tell Mr. Martin that his daughter was making friends with the black. I couldnâ€™t believe this happened. Zanko and I fell in love with the same girl.
I remembered what Shakespeare said, “Friendship is constant in all other things, save in survive and the office of love.” I tried to persuade Maggie not to get close to the blacks, or she would be punished, but it seemed like she didn’t care at all. My original plan was to tell Maggie about Zanko as much as I could, I didn’t know why it turned out to be like this. I made the worst decision ever. I decided to get Zanko into troubles 57
the next time I saw them talking to each other. In that way, Zanko would get kicked out of here, and I can have a chance to make Maggie mine. Then this day came, and this day changed my whole life.
One somber Wednesday, the sky was gray, and it looked as it was going to rain at any time. Maggie walked into the Math class as usual. She was wearing a beautiful blue dress, and her presence in the classroom was like a brightly angel. I saw her walking toward me with a lovely smile. â€œDavid, I have something for you.â€? 59
She said while looking for the thing in her bag. However, the teacher just came in and told all of us to go back to our seats. Maggie said she would give it to me until break time. I was really curious what would she give me. A love letter? I laughed at myself. When the school bell rang, I couldn’t find Maggie in the classroom, so I went out to find her. I wondered how far she could go in a very short time because I couldn’t find Maggie’s 60
figure anywhere in the corridor. Never mind. I could go find her during lunch time. As I was walking toward the classroom of my English class, I saw it. I could see them talking from the window here. Zanko gave Maggie a bag. A bag full of cotton candy. “Now, my time comes.” And I walked straight to Mr. Marin’s office as fast as I could. I hardly didn’t knock on 61
the door and broke into his office instead. “Where’s your manner, young man?” he was not very happy at my behavior. “I’m so sorry Mr. Martin, but I have something serious to tell you.” “Go on.” “Your daughter, Maggie is making friends with Zan…I mean Tom!” I almost yelled. “Who’s this Tom? Do I know him?” 62
“He was one of the slaves working under the cotton trees! You punched him a month ago because he pushed me!” His face turned red but still asked, “Should I trust you, huh?” “Of course you should! Look out the windows! They’re right over there!” But Maggie was already gone. “Are you playing tricks on me David? Do you think this is funny?” Now, he 63
was mad at me. “No, I’m not! Your daughter was right there when I saw them. You should believe me!” I shouted. Then we both looked out the window again. This time, we saw Maggie standing up with a note in her hands behind the bushes. There she was. “David, you come with me.” He stared at them like an angry lion staring at its enemy. 64
“I’m sorry I still have class next period, and it’s about to begin now. I have to go right away. Bye, Mr. Martin.” Certainly, I couldn’t show up with him in front of them. Although I did have a class to attend, I was so excited about what would happen next that I decided to skip my English class. I followed Mr. Martin, and hid behind a bench near the cotton trees. I saw him walked up quickly and hit Zanko on the ground without a word. 65
Maggie was too shocked that her father showed up. “Dad! It was not what you see…” but she was neglected. “How many times did I tell you not to get close to the white? You didn’t listen, and now you are talking to my daughter! Who on earth do you think you are? You are just a humble slave do you know that?” Zanko lied there, but Mr. Martin lifted him up and pushed him to the tree. 66
“Because you never listened, now I’m going to tear out your ears!” “No! Daddy, no! ” Maggie tried to mediate. “Back off! You are in big trouble, young lady!” And then, I just couldn’t believe my eyes. It was too painful for Zanko when Mr. Martin was trying to tear out his ears, the reflex action he had was to push him away. When he did this, Mr. 67
Martin became much angrier than ever. He took out his pocket gun and shot Zanko on his forehead. I spit behind the bench. I wanted to shout, but no voice coming out. I wanted to run away, but my feet were limp, and Maggie had already faint on the ground. Mr. Martin picked her up to his office and left Zanko bleeding right behind. After a few minutes, I started to 68
breath normally. I quickly ran to see Zanko although I already knew he died right after the bullet went through his head. I couldn’t forgive myself. I wanted them to get in troubles but not death! How could this happen so fast? “God, please forgive me…I was just jealous, but I don’t want this terrible thing to happen, this is not the way I want. Zanko, I am so sorry…It was my fault. It was all my fault. I am a devil, a 69
devil that just killed you…” I kneeled down in front of him and wept there. The feeling of guilt would exist in the rest of my life. Zanko’s death is because of me, because of my childish behavior. I didn’t care what time it is, I didn’t care whether Maggie woke up or not. The only thing I care was Zanko’s body, so I quickly dig a hole and put it in. I sat there quietly and didn’t feel like going anywhere. However, rain started to fall from 70
the gray sky. I had no choice but to leave. My feet were walking forward but I was still gazing back at where I buried Zanko. Then I kicked something. It was Maggieâ€™s bag. I picked it up, but a letter fell out. It was a letter from Zanko.
Dear Dadi, You know I donâ€™t know how to write, so I asked Maggie to write this 71
letter for me. I am very sorry about that night which I wanted to end our friendship with you. Although I said so, you still help me! I really appreciate what you have done for me all these years, so I begged Maggie to buy you some cotton candy. Whenever you are around me, I feel so warm and safe because I know I can trust you. Without you, I feel like Iâ€™m nothing, but with you by my side, I feel as Iâ€™m a child loved by the world. 72
Sometimes, even I will look down on myself, but you never did. You are really a good friend, Dadi. Now, because of your help, I can have a chance to make friends with Maggie. That’s all I want. I know it’s hardly impossible for a social statue like me to date any one, especially the white. No matter what our futures will be like, you are always on my mind. One day if I die, don’t cry for me. My soul will be with God so you should be 73
happy. Now, thereâ€™s only one last thing to say. Thank you, Dadi. I love you as much as I love the cotton candy.
Zanko Then I wept in the rain.
Published on Nov 5, 2013