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My Kind of Town

by Don Chapman

Friday, December 14, 2001


A talkative bunch

>> Ala Moana Beach Park

Lt. Col. Chuck Ryan, Navy intelligence officer, jumped down from the WWII-vintage Japanese mini-sub that had beached itself at the Diamond Head end of the park.

HPD Detective Sherlock Gomes was impressed. The Navy officer must have been in his late 40s anyway, maybe 50, and was still strong and agile.

"Not something you see just every day," Ryan said, joining Gomes and two uniformed officers on the beach.

This guy Ryan, Gomes thought, doing the math, was as cool as John Wayne times Clint Eastwood squared. "Nope."

"The posse," Ryan said, nodding up the beach where a cleancut couple showed IDs and got past the cops and yellow tape holding back the growing crowd that came to see the Imperial Navy sub for themselves. Ryan recognized them, Pearl Harbor naval intelligence officers.

They showed their IDs again for Ryan and the cops.

"I believe this is yours," Ryan said. Meaning the sub.

"Mm," said Capt. Mike Stussy.

"Nn," said Lt. Nancy MacTavish.

A talkative bunch, Gomes thought, these Navy spooks. And he'd never met a woman before who spoke monosyllabically. He liked these folks.

While Ryan was glad to have been there to see the sub in person, he was more glad to hand the case off to the locals. He was here to assist Martin Luther Washington.

Marty was on vacation and had just returned to the Hale Koa after a round of golf at Kaneohe Klipper when a Filipina woman grabbed him and said she was desperate because she'd been asked to take part in a plot against America. He grilled her for a while, decided she was for real and was coming to him only because she loved her adopted country so much, and called Ryan, his boss in D.C.

That was the end of Marty's much-needed vacation after just two days. That's how Wilhemina Orlando came by the code name "Sandy." And that's why Ryan caught the next plane to Honolulu.

Yes, the WWII Japanese mini-sub with the skeleton inside was going to be a fascinating case to unravel. But Ryan and Marty were working to protect America. And they'd gotten a huge break. American intelligence knew about Muhammed Resurreccion, but they'd never gotten anyone inside his organization, neither the legit business side nor the Muslim terrorist side.

So they had no idea why he was coming to Honolulu. Ostensibly, the owner of a chain of Wired! Internet coffee shops spread across Mindanao was here to attend an international electronics trade show at the convention center.

Ryan glanced at his watch. In fact, Sandy should have "San Miguel" now.




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 dchapman@midweek.com



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