If you’re looking for a list of the Hauberk books and the order they should be read, check out the series page. This page is for information about Hauberk Protection’s origins, its corporate structure and terminology, along with a few interesting tidbits of research I’ve dug up.
First question I usually get is: “How the heck do you say Hauberk anyway?” It’s pronounced Haw-berk. If you want to hear it pronounced, go to the Merriam Webster definition and click on the speaker symbol.
Origins of Hauberk Protection
After being shot and losing his partner as an FBI agent, Sam Watson started Hauberk Protection with a little help from his friends. Originally he concentrated on providing bodyguard services, but as he became more successful, he hired other former agents and police officers and offered private investigation services. Over the years, he bought out less successful security companies until Hauberk Protection became one of the premier agencies on the eastern seaboard. He started expanding in central USA when a rival company attempted to take over his college friend Mark Rodriguez’s company Celada Security (mentioned in First Night and Private Property). Hauberk now not only offers bodyguard and private investigation services but they’re branching into alarm systems and home & business security along with their newest venture — network security where they track and stop hacker attacks on their clients’ computer networks.
While Sam co-ordinates between the various offices and shmoozes with potential clients, he’s brought in his former FBI boss, Chad Miller to run his Washington DC office. Chad doesn’t just step in as second-in-command out of a sense of duty, but because he’s Sam’s silent partner and owns 49% of Hauberk Protection.
With former DSS agent Troy McPherson at the helm of the International Office, Hauberk is also a force to be reckoned with when offering protection to clients outside of the States. While Troy occasionally works out of the DC office, he generally is stationed in London, England.
What is a Hauberk?
So why did you have Sam call his company HAUBERK Protection? A hauberk is a chainmail shirt the warriors in medieval times wore – it’s the original “bulletproof” vest. Since I see Sam as a modern day warrior…Hauberk protection was created.
CPO: Close Protective Officer — it’s a term many bodyguard/protection agencies use instead of bodyguards. Rosie is one of Hauberk’s main CPOs. While Andy and Kris work as CPOs on occasion, they also do investigative work as required. Scott originally did only CPO work in the International Agency, but once he transfers to Chad’s department, he does some investigative work as well.
MPDC – the Metropolitan Police District of Colombia (the Washington DC police) Andy worked with the MPDC before joining Hauberk.
DSS: for the Hauberk series, DSS stands for the Diplomatic Security Service, an agency within the Department of State. (Troy used to work for them before joining Hauberk)
Principal: the name a bodyguard uses for the person they’re tasked to protect.
Alphabet Agency — any of the numerous agencies referred to by their letters — FBI, NSA, CIA, etc.
Q: In Hidden Heat, Andy says “…a little dicky-bird in the D.A.’s office told me…” What’s a dicky-bird?
Answer: It was one of my father’s sayings (he was a peace officer), and I’ve since learned it’s a Britishism. (Oops.) My father used it the way Andy does — using dicky-bird for someone he didn’t wish to name, or someone insignificant, or anyone really. According to other sources, it can mean that you haven’t heard anything from anyone. So in this case, I mean it that someone “sang like a canary”, his source. Let’s just say from here on in that it’s an “Andy-ism” 😉
Interesting bits of research
What’s the difference between a bodyguard and a private investigator?
A bodyguard guards people against threats — think Kevin Costner in The Bodyguard. They are often brought in to guard businessmen or public figures against stalkers — to prevent bodily harm, kidnapping, harassment or homicide. These are the guys who (in the States) carry more than one weapon, and usually have some form of discreet communication in their ear. They’ll often not only accompany their principal but since they’re trained in defensive driving, they’ll often drive the vehicle. They’ll often be hired to guard the family of their principal as well — that’s why Rosie and other women in Hauberk are valued, because some women and children may be intimidated by the average male bodygaurd, especially if the principal is from a different country. For further information, check out Wikipedia’s Bodyguard page.
A private investigator finds people or does background checks for employment or on future spouses. They are the ones on stake outs for insurance frauds or cheating spouses, to name only a few of their cases. They may or may not be required to protect the person who hires them.
In Personal Protection, Sam uses a palm-vein scanner. It’s an alternative to finger-print scanning–it’s widely used in Japan but only made it over to North America around the time I was writing it. (2008) You can read more about it here at the Wall Street Journal.
In Personal Protection, Rosie notices a long scar on Sam’s chest, along with a stellate scar. The long scar is from a sternotomy where the surgeons had to crack open Sam’s chest to remove the bullet where a serial killer shot him. The stellar (star shaped scar) is the bullet’s entry point. (Thanks to CJ Lyons for her description of Sam’s injuries.)
In Deliberate Deceptions, Lauren opens a closet and remarks that the clothes are bulletproof – I based this upon Miguel Caballero‘s designs. He has several lines for both men and women that look like normal clothes but integrate Kevlar into their designs to protect the wearer against attacks.
There’s a lot of Spanish dishes in Perfect Proposal — what are they? While it’s not stated specifically in the story, Rosie is visiting her family over the Thanksgiving holiday. I asked about Puerto Rican dishes on FB and those dishes (and a few of the stories) were suggested by my ‘friends’. Platanutres are fried plaintain chips, arozz con dulce is a rice custard with coconut and spices, salchichon is a dried sausage, pasteles are a meat patty similar to a pasty or calzone, tembleque is coconut pudding.