- The Monk "3rd special attack" is a shared combo across his skills - so if you use Attack1, Attack1, Attack2.... you the Attack2 will be instantly special.
You're partially right. The monk will always attack in combos of 3. So it's always attack1, attack2, attack3. Unless you wait too long between strikes, of course. To best see this, Equip Fists of Thunder, Deadly Reach (with trident rune makes it easier to see), and Exploding Palm. Attack with each one in sequence.
For example, FoT -> DR -> EP. The first attack will be the first punch from FoT, the 2nd strike will be the V-formation Trident-Reach attack, and the 3rd hit will be the Exploding Palm explosion. You can test this with any combination of strikes and you'll see that each one is in the correct position in the combo.
Part 2 of Leah's journal does exist. You can get it by going into her room after she's following you to go to adria's hut. She has two different dialogs when you enter her room too. She will either say "This is my room, what do you think?" or "What are we doing in my room?"