The Chinese Panda Vase
(Novella: Thriller, Dark Satire) A valuable antique, a callous government, official corruption, a robbery victim determined to even up the odds, and a designer flamethrower collide with deadly consequences. Although there is plenty of humor, this is a dark and challenging story. It is not for everyone. More
(Novella: Thriller, Dark Satire) When two malicious home invaders steal a valuable antique vase and sexually assault Johnny Rohgan, despite his effort to fight them off with a weighted baseball bat, the police accuse Johnny of using excessive force and threaten to arrest him. As for Johnny's stolen property, the police make it abundantly clear to him that they have more important things to do than attempt to recover it. Faced with this apparent official indifference, Johnny attempts to recover his vase himself, to exact some measure of justice for what has been done to him. At the same time, it quickly develops that the home invaders who assaulted him have additional plans for Johnny, plans that he will not survive.
Although there is plenty of humor, many will find this a dark and challenging story; some will find it offensive. It is not for everyone. Its themes include male-on-male rape, official corruption, and the iniquitous and cynical sides of gun control. However, the laws, policies, and proposals alluded to in this story are, with one or two exceptions, either currently on the books or are under active consideration in the United States, North America in general, or in Europe and the Commonwealth of Nations. In some contemporary political circles the measures and official attitudes posited in this story would be considered mild, more than reasonable, mere common sense.
Yes, there has been serious consideration given to requiring that all kitchen knives be manufactured without points. No, designer flamethrowers have not yet made it into the personal-defense marketplace.
On a lighter note, this story contains an outright groaner of a pun for those familiar with Vancouver, BC.