After receiving lovely and encouraging feedback on my last two short stories I posted, “A change is yet to come” last IDAHOBIT and “A Tainted Love” during LGBT+ History Month, I now present to you another short story, entitled “Sorry, Nenek”. This will be the first of two short stories I will be posting over Pride Month.
“Nenek” means grandma in Malay and this story is set in Malaysia. Amin, the half Malay and half Chinese son of a Malaysian-born couple who emigrated to the UK, is travelling to parents’ home country for the first time in a while and the first time without them with his boyfriend Eric. There they meet Amin’s paternal grandma, who as you can imagine, comes from a traditional, conservative Muslim background. How will she react seeing her grandson again with someone who is not only not a girl but also White?
“Sorry, Nenek” draws on themes of being biracial, interracial relationships, complex familial relationships, cross-country and cross-cultural differences, homosexuality (obviously) and Pride – both in the sense of being LGBTQ and the sense of pride itself, the latter of which Amin and his grandma both exhibit alongside stubbornness. Being of Malaysian-Chinese descent myself, this is not based on my own lived experience but there are certainly parts of Amin’s experience that I can relate to or can imagine I may face in the future from extended family members.
“Sorry, Nenek” was originally written for submission for Middleground Magazine, which publishes works that tell mixed race stories. Sadly, it was passed over and while constructive feedback was given regarding the beginning of it, this is the original, unedited version. To read it, download it below and please leave your comments if you enjoyed it. A second short story for Pride Month will be posted later this June as well.