This qualitative case study focuses on 10 Chinese late-arriving ELL adolescents, and examines their cross-trajectory experiences of language use in their daily lives and their language identities in Canada. Findings showed that this group’s language use in daily life is full of conflicts, negotiation and consolidation, not only at school as a usual space of contested language use, but also at home, with peers and in other spaces. At school, social division existed both in and out of class, yet such social division was not merely due to the ELLs’ reluctance to integrate. The participants positioned themselves differently in English Literature courses and core classes in accordance with their perceived proficiency. Home, generally regarded as a traditionally stable space of language practice, became another site of complex dynamics. Peer networks also emerged as embodying similar complications. In addition to racial and ethnic factors, age on arrival and length of residence played a significant role in social interaction, impacting both same-ethnic and cross-ethnic peer networks. The author suggests a theoretical framework for teachers, schools, parents, and researchers.