Roy’s anger exploded when he learnt that Roland had tried to make amends with Edwin. “If you’re really my kor-kor¹ you’ll stay away from that black bastard.”
Roland, stung, placed his book down. “Ah Tee², I’m your kor-kor and will always be, but what did Edwin do to you huh? Let it go. You pick on him and how long did you expect him to keep quiet. Don’t you have any cow sense? Surely one day he’ll fight back.”
“Bloody BB,” Roy muttered.
“Ah Tee, why do you always speak like that?”
“I expect you to stay away from that BB.”
Their father appeared with his pet baby chimpanzee on a leash, and the boys fell silent. He tugged the chain and the primate snarled.
“No more fighting in school, understand?” Seetoh wagged a finger at Roy.
“But Pa –”
“You want a smack?”
“I want to take revenge.” Roy shook with anger.
“Do you now, and what will you do, beat him up?”
“Yes.” Roy was on the verge of tears. He had expected his father to set a few of his men on Edwin to break some bones.
“After that, what?” his father asked. He stood towering over the two boys.
Roy bit his lips and Roland watched his father silently.
“The whole school knows about the fight and if anything happened to that kileng³, you will be the prime suspect. What will that do to my standing? You stupid boy, now we have become his guardians. You had shown your hand from the beginning. He read you like a book but you did not see him coming.”
“I still want to take revenge,” Roy whined.
“I ought to give you a good wallop not because you fought but because you lost, and of all people to that dhoby-boy!”
Seetoh clicked his tongue twice and the chimp hopped onto his shoulder. He fed it some nuts. “Cute isn’t it? All the children want to play with it. Their mothers coo, what a cheeky pet, come boy-boy, pat the monkey. Yah very cute. How many know that it eats raw meat, huh?”
Seetoh stared at Roy, turned slowly not taking his eyes off his son. After their father left, Roy and his brother stared at each other.
kor-kor¹ = older brother
Ah Tee² = kid brother
kileng³ = derogatory term for people of Indian extract
(An Extract from my novel – Beck And Call, A Business Thriller Set In Singapore)
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Oooh, Eric–I just love this excerpt–this monkey and that kid of Indian extract and the disciplinary methods of the father with the two brothers–extremely well tied together and tantalizing the reader to want more and more of this story!
Thank you Granbee.
Though touted as a business thriller, many readers reckon it is also a family saga with some political undertones…
Luv and hugz, Eric
Eric, is there a post I have not liked of yours? Never! Yet, again, you have left lovely reflections that lingers in my mind….Keep penning, I love your ink as much as I adore your presence in my journey. Stay gold, my friend. Cheers.
You come bearing such sweet words as gifts…thank you my dear Shaheen.
Let us all continue to shed light as a community and help each other along. Peace and luv, Eric
your way of writing is amazing.
Thank you Sharmishtha.
Dialogue is a challenge. These characters are Asians and as such they can’t be speaking American or Queen’s English. But at the same time, too much patois might put off people unfamiliar with local slang.
On top of that, I have to let their language abilities evolve as the characters grow into adulthood…
You described well the tensions arising in a multicultural environment. Too bad we can’t all get along as we all stem from a common ancestor, but that’s real life isn’t it?
Thank you Ian, and your observations are true.
Singapore has succeeded better than most countries in welding the various peoples – and we still have much ground to cover.
Writing about family members with conflicting interests in a realistic fashion is difficult, and many writers fall into the trap of appearing contrived, but you convey everything beautifully. Well done, Eric.
Thank you Millie.
Glad you were able to capture and give ‘life’ to the dialogue, as quite often it is not the words but the way we give ‘voice’ to the words…
Hi Eric!! 🙂
I have nominated you for the “Very Inspiring Blogger Award” and I do hope you will accept this award. I visit your page and I think you are very deserving of this award. 🙂 Congrats to you!! 🙂
Details for this award can be found on my site by clicking on the link below:
I just visited your blog and notice you’re collecting so many awards > you need a bigger place to store them, I reckon 🙂
Well done indeed. I’m so very happy for you. If I may add – you are such a beautiful soul and we need more people like you to keep spreading joy.
Thank you also for your kind words and for thinking of me. I accept, though must confess, it’ll take me time to get around to it.
Peace and luv, Eric 🙂
I’ve read all four extracts of Beck & Call and marvel at the way you develop the two primary characters. The protagonist, Edwin learns of love and hard work from his grandfather, whereas the antagonist, Roy, learns about violence and aggression from his father.In Roy’s formative years (as shown in this post) he is tutored on ‘smacks’ and ‘revenge’ and uses swear words. Edwin learns to care for his mother and grandfather.
I’ve bought a copy and once completed reading, shall post a Review – if it’s okay with you.
Thank you Jasey for picking up a copy of Beck & Call.
Yes, please do post a review in “My Books” page (see header). If you purchased an eBook > please also post your review in that website.
Wow. This makes me want to read this novel. I’ll have to look up more of your work. It seems like I saw a few links on your gravatar profile, so I’ll check there first.
Odd… this page tells me that you posted this tomorrow. Simple calendar mix up I’m sure. But I haven’t noticed that happening before.
Thank you Nathan > my books are on Amazon kindle and many other ebook sites.
I posted this today 19th, which is probably your yesterday 18th > speak of living in one’s future and another’s past LOL
Seetoh — what a dominant male personality!
Yes, and what values he imparts to his sons. As we sow, so we reap.
P/s From one excerpt, you captured the man’s character – book reviews coming up 🙂