The opening door spilled the children into the musty atmosphere of an underground research laboratory. Myriad scientific tracts with names like "Principles of Rocketry" and "Race for the Atom" filled the shelves, packed tightly between strange tanks and tubes filled with oddly-colored liquids. And yet what caught both of their eyes was something more sinister: an old newspaper spread open on the central worktable, a steel dagger plunged in anger through the dated headline.

Learning Chinese? Mandarin may not have been a critical asset in 1945, but the world is changing and who knows where danger will rear its head next. So if you've already pushed your mandarin to the conversational level, listen to our intermediate Chinese podcast for today, which will get you to the point where you too can thwart renegade threats to international peace and stability, not to mention deal with the more eccentric members of your family.