My Kind of Town

by Don Chapman

Sunday, June 10, 2001

The Honolulu Soap Co.:
Sunday digest

>>HPD Headquarters

Detective Sherlock Gomes gets lucky with another set of fingerprints found inside the yellow Town Car of Sen. Donovan Matsuda-Yee-Dela Cruz-Bishop-Kamaka, which crashed off the Keeaumoku Overpass, the lone occupant being a young woman who was drunk, loaded on ice and stark naked.

They're all over the steering wheel and match the thumb print on the state ID issued to a Serena Kawainui of a Makiki Heights address. The prints on the passenger side match the thumb print taken when a Dr. Laurie Tang renewed her drivers license. There's no phone listing for Serena Kawainui. The only listing for Dr. Laurie Tang is at Queen's. Sherlock Gomes dials the number.

>>Queen's Medical Center

All Greg can do here in the ER waiting room is wait. And hope. And pray. He isn't religious, not with so many religious idiots like the Gabbardites proclaiming his lifestyle a damnable sin. But all of a sudden Greg doesn't question if there is a God, he's praying fervently to God-Jesus-Muhammed-Buddha-Vishnu-Anybody, pleading to save the life of Lance Ah Sun, his friend, his lover. Pleading to take away the guilt Greg feels because if he hadn't insisted that Lance attend the hate crimes bill rally at the Capitol, and let it be known that the future of their relationship depended on his presence, Lance would not have been taken unconscious to the ER after being attacked by a skinhead at the rally.

>>Foodland - Aina Haina

The only way for Lily to get into the cab of Quinn's big truck is for him to lift her. Which thrilled her earlier. But now it means she can't cling to his arm because she's too drunk to walk without wobbling.

Quinn can't help having similar thoughts. The way Lily's hip moves against his, her head leans against his shoulder, her breast presses into his arm - why does this have to be his first cousin? Damn. Unfortunately - or fortunately, depending -he is cold sober and unlike Lily can't say his inhibitions are washed away with wine. He opens the door, sets the big bag of Popsicles on the cab floor.

"One more time, up you go."

And again he places his big, strong hands around her waist, his fingers nearly encircling her, and lifts her gently up and into the cab. Lily has never felt so secure, so taken care of. Or so suddenly sad. Because as wonderful as this is with Quinn, the first cousins must never go any further. Damn.

>>Waterfront Plaza

Star-Bulletin writer Cruz MacKenzie puts down the phone, rubs his hands together. If the UH student who just called with a tip is right, Cruz is about to find the long-lost Sen. Donovan Matsuda-Yee-Dela Cruz-Bishop-Kamaka. He needs a shooter, dials the photo desk. "Where's Johnny B?" Johnny B. Goo, extreme photographer and the world's only known Chinese Chuck Berry impersonator, recently featured on the "Hawaiian Moving Co."

"Johnny B's out enterprising. Call his cell."

He answers on the third ring.

"Johnny B, hey, Cruz. You wanna be on Page One tomorrow?"

"What makes you think these darling children who are burying their mother in sand at Magic Island aren't cute enough for One?"

"OK. Tough to beat. But I got a story. THE story."

"I'm there."

Cruz gives him the address and the scoop. Johnny B is one guy he trusts with a story. Plus for this assignment Cruz needs a photographer who is light on his feet. And Johnny B. Goo can Duck Walk.


Sheets Ah Sun is staring into his closet, trying to concentrate on packing for his son Laird's graduation from Stanford Business, but coming back again and again to that night in Waimanalo 21 years ago. The night that could come to light because of the discovery of a secret, illegal chemical dump site. He hears his wife's car pulling into the driveway, reminds himself to mention the message from someone at Queen's to call. Whatever that was about.

>>Makiki Heights

Sen. Donovan Matsuda-Yee-Dela Cruz-Bishop-Kamaka is getting further and further out there, even as he knows he has to come back. Where has Serena gone with his car? Serena who can't drive. And he ought to call Grace at the office.

But the pipe on the coffee table beckons. So does another longneck Bud from the fridge. And the senator's demons lure him further out there still.


Peering from the kitchen doorway, Mickey sees the Filipino woman checking laundry on the line outside. Heart racing, the intruder starts moving in her direction.

But then she turns and walks toward the house. Mickey ducks back into the kitchen, out of sight, and instinctively reaches for the .22 he always carries in his right pocket. But he is wearing only a towel. On the counter he sees a big wooden block with half a dozen knife handles sticking out. He grabs the biggest one. Gleaming, sharp, serrated. You could skin a boar with this blade.

The Filipino woman opens the sliding screen door and steps inside. Mickey squeezes the handle, getting the feel.

Don Chapman is editor of MidWeek.
His serialized novel runs daily in the Star-Bulletin
with weekly summaries on Sunday.
He can be emailed at

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