Soo Lin Yao
Soo lin yao
Vital statistics
Nationality Chinese
Died 2010
Affiliation Black Lotus Tong (formerly)
National Antiquities Museum
Occupation Smuggler (formerly)
Pottery expert
Family Zhi Zhu (brother)
Appearances The Blind Banker
Main actor Gemma Chan
"Almost the last thing she said to me... you have to look hard at something to see its value. I knew she was a sweet girl. But truly - I never knew how brave she was as well."
Andy Galbraith about Soo Lin.[src]

Soo Lin Yao was a Chinese pottery expert who worked at the National Antiquities Museum in London. In her youth she was a smuggler for the Black Lotus Tong, but decided to leave that life for a new one in England.


Early lifeEdit

"I had no livelihood, no way of surviving day to day except to work for the bosses."
—Soo Lin Yao on her adolescent situation.[src]

Soo Lin Yao grew up in China, with her brother Zhi Zhu. Their parents had both died, and by the time Soo Lin was fifteen, she had no way to survive except to join the Black Lotus as a smuggler. After one year in the Black Lotus, she was smuggling drugs worth thousands of pounds into Hong Kong.

Life in EnglandEdit

She decided to give up her smuggling occupation and moved to England. She then got a new job and was happy that her life was back on track. However, after five years her brother came looking for her. Zhi Zhu met her at her flat and asked her to help track down an item (the Empress hairpin), but she refused to help. Zhi Zhu was angry, and said that she had betrayed him.

The following day, Soo Lin discovered a cipher that her brother had left for her at the National Antiquities Museum, marking her for death. She then went into hiding at the museum, though Zhi Zhu was able to track her down and kill her.


Zhi ZhuEdit

Zhi zhu

Zhi Zhu about to kill his sister.

Soo Lin and her brother Zhi Zhu had a complex relationship.

When both of their parents had died by the time Soo Lin was fifteen, they both decided to join the Black Lotus. As Soo Lin became a skilled smuggler, Zhi Zhu was being slowly brainwashed by General Shan. When Soo Lin chose to leave the Tong for England, her brother remained in the gang. 

After five years in England, Soo Lin was found by Zhi Zhu in her London flat. He asked her in assistance in tracking down the Empress hairpin. When Soo Lin refused to help the Black Lotus, her brother accused her of betraying him.

The next day, Zhi Zhu left a cipher for Soo Lin at the National Antiquities Museum. Soo Lin knew that her brother wanted to kill her, and so went into hiding to prevent her death. However her brother eventually found her location and killed her.

Andy GalbraithEdit

Andy galbraith and soo lin yao

Andy Galbraith and Soo Lin Yao.

"Almost the last thing she said to me... you have to look hard at something to see its value. I knew she was a sweet girl. But truly - I never knew how brave she was as well."
—Andy Galbraith about Soo Lin Yao after her disappearance.[src]

Andy Galbraith and Soo Lin both worked at the National Antiquities Museum. Andy had a crush on his colleague, which he clumsily acted upon. Soo Lin ignored his advances, saying that he really would want to know her.


Soo Lin Yao appeared in the Sherlock episode The Blind Banker.

Behind the scenesEdit

  • Soo Lin Yao was played by the English actress Gemma Chan.
  • The script for The Blind Banker described Soo Lin as "pale, young, beautiful - a fragile little doll."