By A. van Buren, L. Pyle

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Scholefield, still cursing, bent to fumble on the floor in the darkness for the plastic bag of duty-frees he’d dropped in the confusion. The stifling heat lent a sharp edge of irritation to his voice. ’ The new Irish porter suddenly leaned closer in the darkness and Scholefield recoiled as he inhaled the pungent whisky fumes on his breath. ‘I mean it literally, Mr. Scholefield. I’m not employin’ the words to mean that your telephone has been ringin’ all week in the sense that it’s just been quite bury.

Unfortunately not. What you call here “gay” literature was found in my room. Comrades from the Chinese Embassy here in London were called down immediately. I was denounced at a struggle meeting and sentenced to be returned immediately to China. ’ Nina let out a sudden high-pitched squeal and jumped to her feet. ’ She snatched up her make-up bag and ran out of the room. Scholefield followed her into the hall. She wrenched open the door then stopped and turned, twisting her face into an anguished expression of puzzlement and nodding her head mutely towards the study.

You speak and write Chinese well, you are also fluent in Japanese and you were a Chinese linguist during your National Service in the British Army, monitoring mainland radio broadcasts in Hong Kong. Your determination to become one of your country’s leading Orientalists has also led you to study the “Kyoku-Shinkai” or “Peak of Truth” School of Karate, founded by the Korean, Mas Oyama, who fought fifty-two bulls in his lifetime with his bare hands. You are probably a black belt of the fourth rank—but you keep this to yourself: Your critical academic views on China are widely known through the occasional articles you write for serious Western newspapers and for your work in the broadcasting media of Europe and North America.

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