The Battered Butterfly – It’s the summer of 1989, and things are a little TOO hot in Manila. Gambler Lefty Markowitz wants to be left alone to sun and swim all day, chase pussy all night, and stuff himself with noodles and pizza in between. He’s not getting his wish. A German con man has stolen his money, and a bar girl he spent the night with has turned up beaten to death a day later, Chasing Lefty are a psychotic police captain, a special investigator for the USAF, a Sparrow death squad, a scandal mongering journalist, two tattooed triads, a corrupt Filipino senator, and three tuneful Japanese yakuza. Of dubious assistance to him are his sometime girlfriend Hyacinth Chin, and her 14-year-old protégé Gladiola Laboong. There’s one thing none of them has counted on; they’ve all seen Lefty grumpy, but they’re about to find out what happens when he gets really mad!


     The rain came, and should have washed down the streets. Falling, it should have captured the particles of dust, the fog of auto exhaust, the reek from all the stray fires smoldering in piles of garbage, tackled them all, and dragged them to earth. It should have washed the grime and peeling paint down the walls of the buildings. It should have swept all the discarded newspapers and crushed cigarette butts and rotting banana peels from the sidewalks. Swept everything into the gutter, so the city was clean and fresh, renewed. Instead, the rain came too fast. The streets filled with water faster than the antiquated sewers could cope. They backed up like a plugged toilet, so that pedestrians could expect wet tissue and dog turds plastered to their calves. In Manila, even the rain didn’t work right.