Wednesday, June 28, 2017
The Myanmar Times
The Myanmar Times

A Scent of Scandal

Chapter 1. For U Sha Lok, she was always “that woman”; a phrase used always with a kind of rueful admiration and, despite everything, never a breath of acrimony...

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Chapter 2: A Mysterious Client

“Pray proceed with your analysis.” I unfolded the single sheet of paper I had taken from the envelope. It bore only a brief text, written in the hand that had penned the envelope and, like it, in black ink. I read the letter aloud...

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Chapter 3: The Sinews of a Sorry Scandal

“You will please to forgive the disguise, but sometimes these things are necessary for a person in my position, as you will understand. I must first stress the extreme delicacy of the case I am about to present to you. I know it is unnecessary to ask you to swear an oath of secrecy..."

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Chapter 4: A Remarkable Woman

Our client leaned forward earnestly as he appealed to U Sha Lok. “Can you do this thing for me?”

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Chapter 5: Into Action

U Sha Lok pulled a small package from his pocket. “Here are some Chinese firecrackers, of the kind used for the New Year celebrations. They are quite harmless, but noisy and dramatic, and particularly rich in dense black smoke..."

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Chapter 6: A Plan Misfires

This was my moment. All I had to do, as instructed by U Sha Lok, was to light the fuse of the Chinese firecrackers he had given me and toss them through the open window of Daw Aye Linn’s front room...

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Chapter 7: The Biter Bit

Sha Lok, his face a picture of consternation, leapt to his feet, as did I. Our visitor swept into the room, even more beautiful and imposing at close quarters than she was on stage or screen...

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Chapter 8: Theatre of Shame

Arriving at the National Theatre, we were ushered to our seats, in the most expensive section of the house. U Sha Lok sat in the middle, with me on his left and our incognito royal friend on his right. As the great and the good of Yangon took their places around us, U Sha Lok had me run through the plot of the famous play...

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Chapter 9: Up in Smoke

The character on the stage, who bore such an uncanny resemblance to U Sha Lok, mused to himself. Which of the three boxes before him was the right one?

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Chapter 10: From the Jaws of Defeat

And a brilliant spotlight above the stage swivelled rapidly, pinning U Sha Lok to his seat with a lance of light, as an insect is pinned to a card...

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