Amir grew up in Kabul, Afghanistan, but he currently lives in San Francisco. He's walking around Golden Gate Park and watches two kites flying, which remind him of his past in Afghanistan, and especially of his friend Hassan, a "kite runner".
Hassan was Amir's best friend and servant. He lives in a mud hut behind Amir's father's house. They have a relationship like brothers but Amir was Pashtun and Hassan was Hazara.
Amir talks to his dad about what he learned in school regarding drinking being a sin. Baba explains that the only sin he believes in is theft.
Amir goes to Baba's office where he's with Rahim Khan and he shows him the story he's just written. Baba shows no interest but Rahim Khan is very supportive to Amir and encourages him to continue writing.
While Amir and Hassan are on a walk, they bump into Assef who is a bully and sociopath. He was bullying Amir and Hassan by saying that being friends with Hassan, a Hazara is the reason that Afghanistan is not purified. Assef takes out his brass knuckles and says that Amir is making things worse by being friends with Hassan.