Zuri and her best friend, Charlotte, walked down the streets of Manhattan one chilly October afternoon. School had just let out, and both girls were excited about their newest assignment.
"I can't wait to ask my mom about my family tree!" Charlotte said. "She's told me some cool stuff about my family before, like how my great-great-great-great grandfather sailed on the Mayflower, or how one of my distant cousins fought for women's rights back in the early 1900's. It's going to be so fun tracking it all down."
Zuri nodded. "I don't know much about my family's history, but-" she stopped.
"What is it?" Charlotte asked.
"Ohh...Charlotte, I'm adopted!"
"So, what does that matter?" All of Zuri's friends, including Charlotte, thought that it was so cool Zuri had been born in Africa and adopted when she was a baby.
Zuri shook her head. "It matters because I don't know anything about my family tree. And my parents won't know anything either. I don't even know my real birthday." Her heart sank.
Zuri was proud to be adopted. She loved the culture she came from. She loved celebrating her Gotcha Day. She loved her own uniqueness. But, at times like these, Zuri just wanted to be like everyone else. When she was younger, Zuri hated having to explain over and over again why she didn't look like the rest of her family. Sometimes, the kids didn't even understand. "What's 'adopted'?" they would ask. Now that she was in 3rd grade, most kids understood that she was adopted without even having to ask. But even then, some cruel kids were mean about it. At times like those, Zuri just wished she looked like the rest of her family. Or better yet, that kids just wouldn't be so mean.
"I wouldn't worry about it," Charlotte replied encouragingly. "Just write about the family you've got. Your parents are movie stars! Everyone will love your presentation!"
Zuri smiled as she imagined everyone clapping for her project the loudest. "I guess."
But as the two trudged along, her heart filled with dread.
Chapter 2 coming soon! Please review!