(Scene: His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama and Hastings district councillor Kevin Watkins sit shaded by a bamboo stand in Osmanthus gardens).
Dalai Lama: Venerable counshiwa [Councillor]. When you speak of Guilin – a name I abhor – my ears start to ache.
Watkins: Your Holiness, you forget whose backyard you disrespect.
[His Holiness draws his sword, the two circle each other]
Dalai Lama: Ah. To fight without fighting, but you leave me no choice.
Watkins [indicates to a sign in garden that reads: “No Dogs or Dalai Lamas.”] Pretend you are a dog, and I’ll let you live. [pulls a well-worn comb from his pocket, points to it]. Meet your fate, she is called “The Red Destiny”.
Dalai Lama: A comb by itself rules nothing. It only comes alive in skilled hands.
Watkins: And suddenly I cannot hold back my comb hand’s anger! [deftly throws the comb missing His Holiness by inches. Combs embeds itself in tree].
Dalai Lama: Ha! White-haired warrior, you impress me! You should come to Lhasa and become a disciple. No, wait, Lhasa does not accept women.
Watkins: You have offended my family, and you have offended Hastings [throws a braeburn in the air and smashes it with fist]
Dalai Lama: [wipes apple juice from robe] An apple does not hit back counshiwa.
[Nearby bushes rustle, out steps a handful of Guilin-loyal councillors]
Dalai Lama: So! You bag of the scum! Rather, it is you who shames Hastings! [hurls a dagger that grazes Watkin’s forearm].
Councillor Margaret Twigg: Kevin! You’re bleeding!
Watkins: Blood is just red sweat Margaret.
His Holiness: Surrender now counshiwa, I am entirely self taught.
Twigg: He who is taught by himself has a fool for a master.
His Holiness: Counshiwa Twigg, how do you fit that ego into that body?
Twigg: With a shoe horn.
His Holiness: Ha! Respect!
Watkins: Stand back Margaret, this isn’t your fight. Your Holiness, I’m gunna LTCCP yer arse.
[A bloody battle ensues, yet His Holiness dominates effortlessly with a Hanzo sword, Watkins is downed with an opium dart, he weakens, falls].
His Holiness: [stands, straightens robe] Counshiwas, those of you lucky enough to have your lives, take them with you. However, leave the limbs you’ve lost. They belong to me now. [Gathers severed limbs].
Watkins: I am defeated…but Guilin lives.
His Holiness: Why do you seek the past counshiwa? You rob the present.
Watkins: [weakening further] Ignore the past, and rob the future?
His Holiness: The opium has reached your melon. [draws long breath, closes eyes]. My gift, is to let you live. My demand, as victor, is that Guilin, like a shadow touched by light, must disappear. [Levitates to the tree tops, vanishes. Watkins staggers to retrieve comb from tree, limps back to council chambers].
Postscript: Just before going to print this morning, BayBuzz learnt His Holiness was heading to Napier to “discuss” Hawke’s Bay Regional Council’s renewed relationship with Chinese sister-city Xuzhou. After hearing of yesterday’s fracas, it’s believed council chairman, Rex McIntyre has gone to ground in an undisclosed Wairoa woolshed.