10. Dateline Gun-Xiang / Woo Witnesses Warlord at War

Cub reporter Jimmy Woo here and I cannot speak for Mr. Doogan but I remain alive.

I am reporting from the terrible battle of Gun-Xiang monastery where Notorious Warlord Chun-King has just suffered a crushing defeat at the hands (and feet) of the local monks. Despite the withering rifle fire and even Chun’s attempt to use a new armored gun carriage, the local brand of salamander-style kung fu has devastated the warlord troops as they made numerous bloody assaults on the walls of the monastery where-in the rebellious monks were making a heroic stand. Even from my distant vantage point I could see the monks demonstrating their famed skill of running across the vertical surface of the fortress wall, easily knocking back scaling ladders loaded with attacking soldiers.

In the guise of Chun’s staff doctor I have, for days, bandaged sprained necks and splinted broken limbs. During the course of the battle, Chun’s frustration at his own lack of progress actually began to inflict more casualties on his already beleaguered troops as the emotionally distraught commander repeatedly turned his machine gun on his own men in a vain attempt to drive them forward again. Needless to say, the sight of so many uniformed troops simultaneously retreating from two opposite directions was remarkable indeed.

As dawn breaks over the terraced landscape, Chun has decided to modify his campaign strategy and march south to attack warlord Daing-Po. China Station residents will recall that Chun has already defeated and disarmed Po and that Po now serves Chun but in the General’s own words, “I really need to kick Po around some more. It will be good for morale.”

As to missing American physicist, Dr. Raullo Ortega, pioneer of molecular disruption theory, I have uncovered another clue. It seems that the reason behind Chun-King’s campaign is a quest for something called the Promethean Vacuum Tube. My eavesdropping indicates that this item is the final component of a deadly weapon, that once complete, will give the Notorious Warlord control of all South Asia. It is my hope that this smuggled dispatch will alert the authorities before it is too late.

Until I write again, release your cat from confinement Mr. Doogan’s mother, and turn off your light. This is Jimmy Woo signing off.