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My Kind of Town

Don Chapman

Friday, April 23, 2004


Lama with a kick


» Liliha

Fon Du had given the order. His man Yu Dip, recently reassigned to Honolulu from Tibet and posing as one of 200 monks in orange mendicant robes, was to shoot the second Lama Jey Tsong Khapa as he passed, shooting through his robes without removing the pistol. In the ensuing confusion, he would blend into the crowd and escape.

Instead, somehow, Yu Dip went down, his pistol went sailing into the air, and HPD took Du Yip away. Fon Du wasn't worried about what he'd say. He'd say nothing. Te-Wu, the Chinese secret police that went back over 500 years, was very loyal to those who could keep a secret, very harsh with those who couldn't.

Driving his black Mercedes down Liliha Street now, heading back to the Bank of Lhasa's Bishop Street office, one thing bothered Fon Du even more than losing a good man. The young lama's reaction was far from the weak, submissive reaction of all the Tibetan Buddhists he'd ever encountered. He would've supposed the lama would recoil in horror, maybe try to talk peace. Instead, he leaped and kicked Yu Dip in the head, knocking him cold.

An impressive move, requiring a split-second decision and years of training. But where did it come from? Were the Tibetans taking a page from Shao Lin? Whatever, removing this lama would be a greater challenge than he'd imagined.

No matter. Te-Wu did not fail. And Fon Du could not afford to fail ó not with a new opening in Hong Kong, where the population needed to be reeducated in Chinese ways. He would enjoy the process. But first things first. The lama must die. Unfortunately, with his appearance at the Capitol canceled, he didn't have any scheduled public appearances until tomorrow. Te-Wu would have to remain vigilant at his Waikiki hotel.

Which meant that Fon Du would have the evening free to be with Bodhicita Guzman. He'd gone two days without her, and that was too long. Besides, with all of this stress, he needed a massage.

He speed-dialed her cell. But again she wasn't answering. He left a message. Another one. A frown crossed his face, wondering if he should worry about her health or her faithfulness. Perhaps he should have one of the boys quietly check on her.

Bodhicita Guzman was on TheBus, still in her Sister Mary Miraculoso persona, heading to Kamasami Khan's home in Kaneohe. After seeing the attempt on the life of the young lama ó she knew he was a stunt double, and knowing Fon Du was responsible, she knew she could never be with him again. Khan wouldn't like it, but too bad. Now that she knew Jey, and that she was his eternal consort, there was only one man in the world for her. Her phone rang. She checked caller ID, let it ring some more.



See the Columnists section for some past articles.

Don Chapman is editor of MidWeek. His serialized novel runs daily in the Star-Bulletin. He can be e-mailed at dchapman@midweek.com

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