Meet my principal characters.
Gerhard and Wolf were tough and nasty characters when we first started writing together, then they transitioned to “clever” before I realized it. We all liked the change and it provoked fresh intrigue to the twists and turns of my stories. Now we’re close pals and go off together and have the damnedest time.
I first met Gerhard when he was an engineer for a German electronics manufacturer. The job was dull. He needed more challenge in his life so he offered part time consulting services to anyone with a problem. Business was slow at first. It picked up fast after he shrewdly obtained a lucrative shipping contract for his client despite the deceptive efforts of the Turkish government to secure it for a favorite national. Then Somalia employed him to make sure the new French Ambassador to Sudan never arrived. Honda paid him handsomely for trade information about Toyota. His easiest and most profitable assignment was also the silliest. Turkmenistan hired him to engineer a plan to steal oil from Iranian pipelines and Iran hired him to engineer a plan to prevent Turkmenistan from stealing the oil. Whatever the job, he credited his success to order and attention to detail.
Wolfgang (he preferred Wolf) was Gerhard’s assistant. He once saved Gerhard from an attack by waterfront thugs only to lose his left hand from a random bullet. Gerhard engineered a new stainless steel prosthetic hand in a titanium enclosure with an advanced under-arm power cell that operated the hand and a discharging electrode, both of which he found invaluable.
Wolf lived with and took care of his parents who are legally blind. He kept the house lights burning so they could see shapes better. If he had a fear of anything, it was darkness. And if Gerhard had a fear, it was the unknown, the lack of information. It was the attention to detail thing.