Summary of the amusement
Rejected by socialite Shalia Owell, who has discovered Clarity's false identity as Herbaline employee Darcy Emmers, Clarity becomes agenda and damage control assistant of Elsie Chu, the wife of Singapore billionaire Dao Bin, owner of wireless and telephony company Hunan Enterprises. Disenchanted by a rocky marriage and the lack of influence she has on the business matters of her husband, including the new health phone project to sell longevity services, Elsie Chu has purchased an expensive ring sold by a luxury jeweler, labeled 'Rose Property', which has some wireless equipment built into it to protect her privacy. Convinced that she can take part in her husband's business, she instructs Clarity to spy on Dao Bin and his moneytician Lim Li, to know more about her husband's activity.
Clarity becomes a confidant of Elsie Chu, who has begun instruction as a White Tigress, following the esoteric teachings of Madame Wa. But the cheeky doyenne does not trust her esoteric teacher completely, and she uses her ring in order to stay in touch with a secretive group which keeps her away from sexual esoteric practices, the Privilege Club. The secretive club is the group who issued the vanity ring of Elsie Chu, and instructs her to stay away from Madame Wa and instead carry out the filming of an adult film, 'Golden Lamp of Casa Mollino', to vent out the impulses of her outrageous libido.
The following day, Elsie Chu instructed Clarity to follow Dao Bin. It was also part of her new job as a personal assistant of the billionaire's sneaky wife. Elsie Chu did not want her husband to know about Clarity, and she had slept in a guest room, where Vanity slept when she wasn't sleeping with Dao Bin. Elsie Chu slept in a room separate from Dao Bin, in a bedroom on the first floor. The couple lived separate lives but shared their joint business interests, and the reputation of a solid marriage. The costly fees of a divorce, prevented Dao Bin from divorcing his wife outright. He paid for all of her expenses, without paying too much attention to what she was doing, or with whom. In exchange, his wife allowed him to have a daily girlfriend experience with Vanity and sleep with her.
"He's going to the Chinese Embassy, go and follow him. I want to know what he's going to do." The wealthy doyenne gave Clarity a list of groceries to buy.
"This is your excuse if you run into my husband. You're just buying groceries for me."
"I need to use the bathroom," said Clarity. It wasn't true, but she needed time to gather her thoughts. Elsie Chu led her to a magnificent bathroom made of marble. Inside, Clarity took out her decryptor and sent a message to an email address provided by Xiaolu, the daughter of the head of the Enlightened Dragon Secret Society, Wen Jhi. The members of the Enlightened Dragon clashed with Madame Wa's White Tigress Society, the Shade of the White Lotus, on the way sexual meditation should be taught. A message from Wen Jhi reached her mailbox which said: Follow Dao Bin, use your Singapore diplomatic passport to get inside the Chinese embassy, assume the identity of a western business relations representative. Folder A in the meridian 57 module has all the information you need. Clarity opened the A folder mentioned, and opened a file with a list of figures and companies involved in the making of a smartphone. The plan by the Pentatone monks was audacious. A knock on the door from Elsie Chu interrupted her examination.
"My husband is leaving, you have to go."
"I'll be right out," said Clarity.
Using pocket money provided by Elsie Chu, Clarity followed Dao Bin's Rolls Royce in a cab, which drove down Cuscaden Road. They headed west on Grange Road and turned left on Tanglin Road, until they reached the Embassy of China in Singapore at number one fifty. The embassy was a rectangular greyish building acknowledging its consular section with a golden nameplate. At the gate, Clarity showed her diplomatic passport, alledging she was there on behalf of a consortium of companies wanting to invest in China.
"Who do you want to see?"
"I simply want to present our project to the Economic and Commercial Counsellor's Office." After a few minutes speaking Chinese with a secretary of the department, the guard told Clarity to walk past the gate.
"Leave the passport here," he said. Clarity hesitated, but there wasn't really anywhere to go.
"Sure," she said, handing down the Singapore passport to the guard. A second guard welcomed her and showed her a chair near the official reception area. Surprisingly, he spoke pretty good English. It looked as though he had nothing else to do but watch her.
"What do you do here?" He asked.
"I'm a coordinator of companies making a smartphone."
"Companies, it takes several companies to make a smartphone. I represent Corning, Cirrus Logic, TriQuint Semiconductor, Skyworks, Radio Frequency Micro Devices, Broadcom, we get together to make glass displays, audio components, transmit modules of a smartphone."
The guard nodded.
"Smartphone is good business for China."
"Yeah, we have a lot of money, we're making a deal with a company here, Hunan Enterprises. It's headed by this big shot billionaire, Dao Bin." The eyes of the guard squinted with curiosity, after hearing the word money.
"Too much money," she said, "he should be giving out more money to you guys, you're taking care of protection for everyone."
Knowing the Chinese People's Liberation Army, the PLA, counted over two million ground soldiers and half a million in reserve, Clarity reasoned that the protection of the Chinese territory was safe. The guard nodded, unsure of how to interpret the information provided by Clarity. She pressed him for additional information.
"Where is Dao Bin? He came in a Rolls Royce today."
"In the soundproof room, sometimes it's used for interrogation. We are not sure whether he is loyal to China or to his money."
She knew that the guard was sharing the information to learn what she knew about Dao Bin. They were playing information cat and mouse. She took out her decryptor, wondering how to get past the guard into the conference room. She used the search feature of the decryptor, finding a file on the People's Liberation Army. Two small facts underlined by the monks drew her attention, one of them related to the soldiers working at the embassy, confidential information no one else knew. She began to forge an idea. She lifted her head and spoke to the guard in a low voice.
"If you help me get some information on Dao Bin, I can decommission you as part of the Entertainment soldiers phase out. Then, I'll find you a job at Omnivision or Qualcomm, suppliers of our smartphone camera chip, baseband processors and transceivers."
The Entertainment soldiers of the PLA, singers, dancers, and acrobats, were a big part of the Chinese army, putting on shows to raise morale and define patriotism for China. But a state-backed drive against excess was leading to a big layoff of these troops. For some soldiers, the layoff was a way out of the PLA. Clarity glanced at the guard, who was pondering her offer, calmly smoking a cigarette. Omnivision and Qualcomm operated out of Taiwan, which was permanently politically at odds with China. The guard crushed his cigarette in a black ceramic ashtray, observed by Clarity. She was reaching the moment of truth as to whether the monks were well informed about embassy personnel.
"Can you show me to the soundproof room?" She asked. The guard grabbed her arm.
"On the way out, tell me the name of the Entertainment Troup assigned to me, and the person to contact at the companies you mentioned. China wants that technology."
Clarity nodded. She wasn't sure as to whether the guard accepted her proposition, or whether he had received orders to get information about Omnivision and Qualcomm from Clarity, but the man led her to a room adjacent to the soundproof room. Across from them, she could see Dao Bin and Jiang Xiong going over a presentation.
"They cannot see you," he said. "You can stay for five minutes, then I take you out."
Clarity nodded and the guard left the room, closing the door. Clarity looked at the panels in front of her. She saw a knob which said volume and turned it clockwise, raising the level to six. The speakers of the room began sending the conversation taking place in front of her.
"China's Western Theater Command has approved unlimited funds for your project, here is the account at the Overseas Chinese Banking Corporation account that you will use. The account will be in your name, opened at the Holland Branch of OCBC in Singapore, just like you requested." Jiang Xiong handed a piece of paper to Dao Bin, with the name of the person to contact in China, to request the funds.
"How do I open the account?" Asked Dao Bin. Jiang Xiong grabbed a briefcase from the floor and opened it on the table, showing a small stack of ten thousand Singapore dollar notes, ten notes neatly grouped, leaving most of the suitcase empty.
"Everyone is going to know me with these notes, nobody uses ten thousand dollar bills in Singapore. You should have filled the suitcase with twenty dollar bills, that is basic money feng shui."
"This is how we work. I cannot do anything else, these are the instructions which have been passed to me. Use the money to pay Chang." Dao Bin was not showing a happy face, but brought the suitcase towards him, closing it.
"What is the knowledge that Chang has agreed to provide?" Asked Jiang Xiong.
"The first six levels of his teachings, learned from several esoteric teachers. He calls the first one Foundation, the basics of the microcosmic orbit, the second level includes the basics of semen retention and jade egg techniques for women, for health, vitality and sexual confidence, in addition to some techniques of sexual kungfu like testicle breathing and ovarian breathing. The third course is a technique to master emotion, fusion of the five elements."
"We want that for some officers of our Liberation Army. Mastering emotion is key to having a superior Army." Dao Bin nodded.
"Then, Chang has finally agreed to provide the practices related to immortality."
"How do they work?"
"There are three, lesser enlightenment, greater, and greatest enlightenment. It assumes dexterity with the previous meditation techniques and involves twenty four hours of sex and a meditation on delicate matters." Jiang Xiong pressed the slide button of his computer, showing Professor Chang meeting a leader of the Chinese sect Falung Gong.
"He is trying to sell me some of his services, but I have refused. I'm not doing these additional meditation levels. Chang claims his Taoist practice includes simply a meditation on the notion of death. But in reality, he gives instructions that take the person engaging in it be in a near-death experience. That is his claim to the afterlife and why he says that he provides immortality in this life. After doing what he says, you experience something very close to what death is like, and then come back to life, something like immortality, or close to it. He calls it immortality in this life."
"Make a deal with him, I want to know more about that, it's not clear to me." Clarity heard the door behind her open, showing the face of the guard who had let her listen to the conversation.
"Leave now," he said.
Clarity followed the guard and came back to the reception area. Carrying out her part of the agreement, she opened a file of her decryptor and told the soldier what he wanted, in order to get out of the Army and make a living as civilian.
"Talk to the entertainment soldiers in Shanghai and ask for to speak to the colonel of the ten-wood fan, ask him about his interview with the Sunday Morning Post. He works with the China Arms Control and Disarmament Association, a military think-tank. You'll be included as part of the phased-out entertainment soldiers." The guard took note and led her to reception. Clarity figured that she had to leave. She spoke with the receptionist, telling her that she had another appointment.
"Maybe some other time. I will make an official appointment next time," she said. The receptionist nodded and the guard led her to the gate leading to the embassy. The first guard she'd met, who was sitting inside the cabin beside the front gate of the Embassy began talking to her.
"You cannot take your passport with you."
Clarity insisted and requested that the guard read what the second page said, a note written by the president of Singapore. The President of the Republic of Singapore requests all authorities to allow the Singapore citizen named in this passport to pass without delay or hindrance. The guard read the statement and made a call to the Chinese Embassy. A few minutes later, he handed Clarity her passport.
"You can go," he said, "we know who you are."
Clarity held the stare, unfazed. She took the passport and thanked him, walking past the gate of the embassy, thinking that she was probably one of the most filed persons by the Chinese Embassy of Singapore. Still, the passport had worked in her favor, and she was abreast of the plan of Dao Bin. For now, it included being a customer of OCBC, the Overseas Chinese Banking Corporation.
TO BE CONTINUED, THE VANITY RING
All characters over 21
BANANA HUMOR for Adults previously released:
Nook, Apple Ipad, Samsung Galaxy Tablet,
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THE MALIBU CASE.
Or Whether Corporate Nudity should be part of the Dress Code.
THE ACAPULCO COCKTAIL.
Or How a single Drink can turn Thirst into A Traction with the Law.
THE CAYMAN AIR BANNER.
Or Going Where Your Money Goes to Keep an Eye on How it disappears.
THE BAHAMAS LOTION.
Or Discerning When the Notion of a Lotion is not Beauty but Dependence.
THE ABU DHABI CHANNEL.
Or Whether renting pleasure is different from owning it.
THE BAHRAIN BRODERIE.
Or Whether a Wedding can be Arranged as a Matter of Levity.
THE BELLAGIO WIKILEAK.
Or How to Rely on Information before the Information relies on You.
THE CUBAN RENEGADE.
Or Whether gold can be backed by a Renegade,
when money is backed by the cap of Castro.
THE SUGAR BABY.
Or Whether sugar can turn to salt when someone overlooks the honey.
THE MARBLE TOUCAN.
Or How those who want you to leave your place are those who should leave in the first place.
THE OUTDOOR SHOWER.
Or How a shower can bring good weather to the bottom line.
THE EMOTION SCALE.
Or looking at how you feel to let others choose how you think.
Or how the merchant of longevity
can sell a claim to live longer by monetizing wisdom