Magic in "The City": A San Francisco Story
(Book Three of The Magic Carpet Trilogy)
The Center for Magic Carpet Studies and the National Magic Carpet Reporting Center feed the frenzy that follows the publication of flying-carpet stories by Marty Janko of Portland and Amanda Olsen of Seattle.
Some historians buy into it and think that flying carpets may have played a part in history, from Pheidippedes’ ‘run’ from Marathon to Athens to Napoleon’s escape from Elba.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science offers ten million dollars to anyone who can bring them a flying carpet. The notorious Mister Hung, kingpin of the Wah Ching syndicate, proceeds to offer twenty million dollars to anyone who can bring him one.
Ed Harrington, an SFPD detective, gets assigned the job of keeping Mister Hung from getting his hands on a flying carpet, which he thinks is absolute nonsense. But with a wife who went through a post-menopause metamorphosis and is now a full-fledged Santeria priestess with a sacrificial altar in the living room, what’s a little more nonsense? Besides, Ed is now just counting the days till retirement, when he plans to buy a big fishing boat and live by himself in the San Francisco Bay.
So Ed and his assigned partner, a flamboyant, transgender policewoman, go through the motions and stake out Mister Hung’s shop in Chinatown, where just about every nut-job in the city is bringing a rug that they claim can fly.
Could there really be a flying carpet out there? Ed is about to find out, and his skepticism is about to get blown to smithereens.