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Easton, Val. Val Easton was created by T.T. Flynn (Cassidy, Denver Kid, Mike Harris, Mister Maddox, Izzy O’Shea) and appeared in five stories in Dime Detective from 1932 to 1935, beginning with “The Black Doctor” (Dime Detective, Dec. 1932).
Valentine Easton is a top agent for the American Intelligence Service ("sometimes loosely called the Secret Service"), fighting against threats to the American government and to world peace. Easton "was harmless looking, seldom hurried, amiable. His slender figure was not one to attract attention." His boss is Gregg, "that heavy-set, saturnine man who stood at the right elbow of the State Department." Easton's arch-enemies are the Yellow Perils Carl Zaken and Chang Ch'ien:
Through the shadowy paths of international espionage tales of Carl Zaken, the Black Doctor, had for years seeped like fantastic nightmares. Master spy, incredibly clever and ruthless, he had been always a menace to those governments he worked against. And Chang Ch'ien, who had come out of the underworld of France a myth of terror, had proved no less dangerous in company with the Black Doctor.
Zaken is a "tall, stooped figure with (a) pale, cadaverous face and blazing eyes" and a "pale, ghastly grin." Chang Ch'ien is a
tall, golden-skinned Oriental...his full-lipped mouth, his stabbing slant eyes, with a small sickle-shaped scar at the corner of his right eyes (sic), his smooth black hair sweeping back from his forehead as he lifted his hat for a moment gave him the appearance of a tall yellow god. The scar drew his eye up into the slightest sardonic cast. And then he smiled; and cunning lay behind it, and ruthlessness, and cruelty. And one saw how this man had become a myth, a legend, a terror in the underworld of many lands.
Together, this pair plagues Easton and the U.S.A. They create new breeds of poisonous snakes as well as "small fountain-pen gas guns." But Easton is a match for both men. He is widely-traveled and experienced, a good shot, and is clever under pressure.
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