From the diary of Doctor Watson
Lestrade and I stood there for a long moment as the eyes of the mob stared back at us. Then with a deft movement, I unleashed my Anti-Moriarty device (a gadget I’ve been working on for some time) and my trusty revolver slid down my sleeve and into my waiting hand.
I held the gun high, ensuring everyone could see it, and for about three seconds I actually believed we might overcome the hoard, locate Fu Manchu, make the necessary arrests and be home in time for tea. But alas, it was not to be so, for at that instant, Fu himself appeared at my feet – apparently having cleverly concealed himself in the very dirt we stood on.
“Ha!” Yelled he, whipping the weapon out of my grasp. “Once again, I have the upper hand.”
Lestrade rolled his eyes. “For Fuck’s Sake, Watson…”
I turned to my companion with the intention of giving him a quick slap across the chops, but our opponent was even quicker and bopped Lestrade over the head with a small cosh. Even as I saw the inspector fall to his knees I knew what would happen next.
It was dark when I came to. My first response was to rub my head but it seemed my hands were tied. Literally. I blinked and looked around. We were inside the warehouse, Lestrade lying on his side next to me, and a small Chinese man sitting on a chair a few yards away, pointing my own revolver at my head. I tugged at my bonds but they had about as much give in them as a banker at Christmas.
“You cannot escape.” The man with the gun smiled. “However, my master instructed me to encourage you to try. Then I can shoot you.” He smiled again.
The space around us was bare, but the rest of the warehouse was packed floor to ceiling with wooden crates, all marked ‘Landen Tahn’. I was about to comment on the poor spelling when Lestrade stirred.
“You alright, old bean?” I leaned over, hoping our captor would think I was merely showing concern for my companion, but in reality, I was reaching for the watch chain that dangled from Lestrade’s pocket. Muttering away in a calming tone as if I were offering medical advice to my friend, I was able to loop a finger through the chain. Giving it a smart tug, I pulled it free of his pocket and gathered the item into my stiff little fingers. Quite how I was to carry out the next stage of my plan was not, at that moment, obvious.
To be continued…