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Diane Maher




[1955 -- West Berlin, West Germany]


Wo Fat arrived in West Berlin on a plane from Australia. He was a heavy set Chinese man in his early thirties, bald, medium height, with a thin mustache. He was to meet with a man who was willing to pay him a large sum of money for completion of a certain unnamed task. In China, his superiors paid him, but it was nothing compared to what he could make if he went freelance. However, he didn't let anyone know this because the wealth of resources he had in China just couldn't be ignored. Therefore, he had made up a pretense of completing another mission to go to Australia. What his superiors didn't know, was that this mission had already been completed, but never reported on. If there were questions, he would be able to say that the object of this particular mission had fled to West Berlin.


As he arrived at the building in West Berlin where he was to meet this potential employer, he noticed several persons following him. What their purpose was, he didn't know or care as he had reached his destination. He pushed the button for apartment number 16.




"Who is it?" a disembodied voice asked from the speaker.


"Wo Fat."


The man pressed the button on the arm of the chair that would allow his visitor to enter the building. Wo Fat entered the building, walked down the hall to the elevator, which he took to the fourth floor. When he knocked on the door to apartment 16, he was met at the door by a tall, lean, muscular, blond haired man dressed all in black. He escorted the Chinese man into the office beyond where the man he was to meet sat looking out a window.


"Please sit down, Wo Fat," Freiberger began as he turned away from the window to face his visitor. "I have heard you have a good reputation for completing your tasks." Rudolf Freiberger, a tall man who was now in his mid-sixties, with gray hair and hard, steel gray eyes.  He was currently assigned to West Berlin as an agent for the East German KGB.


Wo Fat sat in the chair opposite the German. "Thank you."


"I have a task for you. One that will give me great satisfaction to see completed."


"What is it?"


"I need two people framed for murder such that they cannot escape punishment. Can you do it?"


Wo Fat considered briefly before answering, "Yes, I can. Though, I will need to hire help to do so. Can you give me any information regarding these people?"


"Yes." He placed a folder containing some information obtained by one of the East German KGB agents currently working in the records department of MI-6 regarding these two people. It also included several photos of the people. "I am most interested in seeing the woman destroyed."


Wo Fat picked up the folder, opened it, scanned it, took one photo of each person and put it back on the table. "Interesting. They are both MI-6 agents?"


"Yes. Will this pose a problem?"


"No. In fact, it may make it easier to get at them," Wo Fat said as he put the pictures in his pocket and stood to leave.


"One more thing, I want to be kept informed of your progress on this project. If they leave England for any reason, I want to know of their destination."


"All right. I'll inform you of my price at a later date." Wo Fat then turned and left the apartment.


Freiberger had many contacts in the intelligence community and this Wo Fat had come highly recommended to him. He considered what he knew about his target's current whereabouts. She had been a member of MI-6 since shortly after her arrival in England in 1943. Also, he found that she married an American Air Force officer, one Brigadier General Robert Hogan in 1946. There were pictures of him in the file also. Perhaps they have children. If I can find this out, I may be able to further harm her myself, he thought as he opened the folder. He had only given the Chinese man photos to identify his targets, nothing more.


At first, he had found it hard to believe an ex-SS officer marrying an American Air Force officer. Then, he pulled out the photos he had taken outside the prison where his wife and brother had been executed in 1947.  Sure enough, he had a picture of the woman he had known as Karla Hoffman with this man and his arm was draped over her shoulders. According to his information, he was also among the agents who had been present at his wife's arrest. How convenient that these two are married! It will save me the trouble of exposing our American operation just to get additional information regarding him. His last attempt to kill her in 1950 had failed despite the fact that he had kidnapped her husband and used him to bring her out of hiding. He would have to be even subtler now. *Karla, I'll have my revenge upon you and your filthy husband!*  he thought venomously and slammed his fist on his desk.



Meanwhile, Wo Fat began recruiting for the job. Several days later, his operatives in London began their observation of the two people in question. They were taking a trip to Hawaii for a family vacation. He followed them to the island of Kauai, Hawaii and informed Freiberger of their trip. He knew that the best way to frame a person for murder was to put them at the scene of the crime. *What better way to do this than by having their fingerprints on the murder weapon itself?*  he thought.


As he considered this, he pulled a little black book from his inner jacket pocket, placed it on the table in front of him and made a phone call.


"Hello?" the man at the other end of the phone answered.


"I would like to discuss a job I need done with you in person," he began. "Please come to my place in thirty minutes."


"All right." They hung up.


Thirty minutes later, there was a knock on the front door of Wo Fat's home. His henchman answered it and saw a young Chinese man, in his late twenties, dressed in black pants and a red aloha shirt standing there.


"Come in." The man entered and followed him to the living room where Wo Fat sat in a plush chair.


"Well, what's the job you want me to do?" the young Chinese man questioned.


"I need weapons stolen from two people."


"Oh?” He reacted.  “For my price, isn't that a little steep, even for you, Wo Fat?"


"No, not in this case.”  Wo Fat sat there unaffected by this young man’s reaction.  “Also, there are certain requirements that must be fulfilled for this assignment."


"What's the big deal about these people?" the man asked.


"It is not important for you to know that." Wo Fat paused before continuing, "Before I tell you more, you will agree to do the job."


The man considered it briefly. "What the hell? I'll get paid for it.”  He paused, “All right. I'll do it."


Wo Fat pulled out the two pictures he had of these people, along with his notes of their trip to Hawaii thus far. The man examined the pictures.


"What are the 'certain requirements' that you mentioned?"


"You must not, I repeat must NOT get your fingerprints on these weapons or smudge theirs,” he said in his demanding tone.  “It is essential. Is that clearly understood?"


"Yeah, yeah."


"The penalty for messing up this job, will be the loss of your life. Is that clearly understood?!" he said angrily as he leaned across the table and glared at him. He didn't like having to rely on anyone other than himself, but he wasn't skilled in the arts of physical stealth.  Mental stealth, that was another matter.


"Yes.”  The man suddenly had fear in his eyes, “Wo Fat, I understand. It will be done as you ask."


"Good,” Wo Fat relaxed just a bit, “I will call you and inform you when they are out of their cottage," he said as he wrote the address on a piece of paper and handed it to the man.



The next day, Robert and Karla Hogan decided to take a tour of the island with their children. It was the second to last day of their vacation. As they arrived at the area where the tour was to begin, Wo Fat called his man to inform him to begin his search, "They will be gone for several hours on this tour. Remember what I said."


"Yes. I'll bring the items to your home immediately."  The young man replied on the phone.


"Very good," Wo Fat said to conclude the call. After this, he observed them board the tour bus, then returned to his home. "So far, everything is going according to my plan."


The man entered the cottage being rented by the Hogan family. He wore gloves and was careful not to disturb very much in his search. By the time he entered the second bedroom, he hadn't found the weapons yet. He noticed a small urn in the corner on a shelf about five feet off the floor. He went over and carefully removed it from the shelf. As he removed it, several postcards and a pen fell to the floor. He would worry about those in a minute.


This urn is heavy for being a decoration! he thought as he brought it down to look in it. When he looked, he found one of the objects of his search. A gun was hidden in the urn. He walked to the bed and carefully turned the urn upside down so the weapon would slide out. He had brought a pen and several plastic bags to place the weapons in.


The weapon was soon in a plastic bag, he marked the bag containing this weapon as being from the urn with the pen and continued his search for the second weapon. He carefully checked a bag containing a small cosmetics kit. The second gun was hidden in the very bottom of the bag. This weapon was carefully removed by sliding the pen into the gun's barrel and lifting it from the cosmetics bag. It was placed in a second plastic bag and marked as being from the cosmetics bag. His mission was complete, he placed both weapons in a paper bag and left to return to Wo Fat's home.


Upon arriving there a half-hour later, he rang the doorbell. The henchman opened the door, he entered and handed Wo Fat the paper bag containing the two weapons.


Wo Fat carefully pulled the plastic bags out, being extra careful not to touch the weapons themselves, but noticed the labels on the bags.  "I see you labeled where you found them. Very good. Now we know which one belongs to the man and the woman."


"How do we know which is the man's or the woman's?" the henchman asked.


"A man doesn't keep anything in a cosmetics bag." Then, to him, Wo Fat said, "Your payment is on the table. Take it and leave."


He took the bag containing his payment and hurriedly left.



On their return from the tour later that day, the Hogans discovered that someone had been in the cottage while they were away. Karla Hogan was medium height, slim, with shoulder length blonde hair now streaked with gray and striking blue-gray eyes. Robert Hogan was tall, with an athletic body, his hair was about half gray and brown, intelligent eyes. Both were fifty and were dressed in shorts and aloha shirts. In this place, that wasn't odd at all.


She noticed the postcards and pen on the floor in their bedroom. "I know I left these behind this urn," she commented as she squatted down and slowly picked them up.


"What?" Hogan asked.


"These postcards. I put them behind this urn so they wouldn't blow in the breeze coming in through this window."


He walked over to the urn, pulled it down from the shelf and looked inside. "Uh oh. My gun was in here and now it's gone."


She went to her cosmetics bag. When she checked the bottom of it, she found her own weapon was also missing. "Uh oh is right. Mine's gone too. Now what?"


"I guess we'll have to call the police and report them as stolen."


"That's not good. You know headquarters frowns on that sort of thing."


"Yes. I know. However, we're on vacation, so there's no excuse for us not to report it. Don't touch anything else in here. Go in the next room and call the police."


"All right." She left to call them.


Soon, they arrived. The men who came brought a kit to dust for fingerprints and pen and paper to write down the pertinent information for their investigation. As they finished dusting for fingerprints, including taking their prints to compare to those they found at the scene, they asked them whether anything else was missing.


"We haven't checked as we didn't want to add any more fingerprints than we already did," Hogan replied. "However, we would like to. Do you need to return to the station immediately? This shouldn't take very long."


"No, we'll wait," the sergeant replied.


He and Karla searched their room, then their kids' rooms to see whether anything else was gone. Nothing else was missing. It was embarrassing for them to admit that their weapons had been stolen, but they did, as it was the right thing to do. However, they didn't say they were agents.


"How long will you be in Hawaii?" the sergeant asked as he finished making notes on his pad.


"We're leaving to return to England tomorrow morning," Hogan replied. "If you have any more questions, you have our address and phone number, but keep in mind the time difference if you call."


"We will. We'll inform you if we find the weapons. If not, then you won't hear from us."


"Thanks," Hogan said calmly as the officer’s left.


They went to a nearby restaurant for dinner before returning to start packing their belongings. They had an early flight the next morning to Honolulu before their flight to San Francisco, then New York and finally, London. Tomorrow, they had a long day of travel ahead of them. Upon their return to London the next evening, they informed their boss of the stolen weapons as they weren't lost during the course of a mission.



Meanwhile, Wo Fat had been recalled to Peking. His superiors informed him they were displeased with his recent work.  Before leaving for Peking, he called and informed Freiberger of the situation.


"Hmmm. That could be a problem. However, I have no doubts that you will complete this task you have started," Freiberger commented.


"Of course. When I begin something, I finish it. I will contact you again when I can leave China."


"All right. At that time, you will inform me of your price."


Wo Fat nodded, bowed and left the room. He wasn't someone who left a job half done. In this case, however, he had no choice but to leave with his superiors in Peking on his back.


Rudolf Freiberger wasn't happy, "I'll have to wait a while longer for my revenge. However, revenge is a dish best served cold."



Several years later, in 1959, Wo Fat was able to find out about a meeting of Western intelligence leaders which was to take place in Honolulu. He made arrangements for one of his country's American agents to go there and he briefed the agent on what he was to do with the items he would receive and when. He then went to a second meeting with Freiberger in West Berlin. He had only recently been allowed to leave China again.


"I have been waiting to meet with you once again. I know you have been on various assignments in China for the last few years, but now, you are free to complete this assignment."


"Yes. My price for the successful completion of this assignment is fifty thousand dollars."


"All right. What’s your plan?" Freiberger asked.


Wo Fat briefly outlined his plan. "Your men have completed the tasks you assigned to them. Only one man is left on the target list and the incriminating evidence is to be left at the scene of the crime this time. Phase two of the plan will be completed as soon as the leaders of the Western intelligence services meet in Honolulu in a couple of weeks," Wo Fat replied calmly.

"Good. And the dagger whose picture I gave to you?"


"I allowed my man to study it carefully. He'll find it. Here's the picture," he said, then handed the picture back to Freiberger.


"Good," Freiberger replied. "Keep me informed."


The previous day, he had ordered another of his henchmen, a man of Chinese descent, to observe the Hogan residence in London, England. He had been shown a picture of a specific item, which he was to steal from their residence at the earliest opportunity. It was a dagger about 13½ inches in length, including its blade and handle. The handle was wooden, but stained black. There was a small button embedded in the wood at the top of the handle, which read, 'SS'. It was an SS dagger, which had a phrase engraved on the blade, 'Meine Ehre Heißt Treue' [my honor is loyalty].



This opportunity occurred a week before the meeting in Honolulu.  While the family was out of the house, the Chinese man made his move. He was able to enter the house fairly easily by merely using a glass cutter to cut a hole large enough to fit his arm through the window.  It only took a moment to unlock the window, pull his arm back out and open it. Once inside, it took him half an hour to find the case containing the item he sought.  It was located in the basement and was hidden in a locked room. He used a crowbar to pry open the door to the room. Once he found the dagger, he used the glass cutter to cut a hole in the case and then put on a pair of gloves prior to removing the dagger from the case. He had been ordered to not get his own fingerprints on any portion of the dagger at any cost. Anywhere else, he didn't care, but not on the dagger.


Suddenly, he heard the sound of a motor as a car pulled into the driveway. Quickly, he pulled the dagger from the case, slid it into a black velvet bag, then swiftly ran up the stairs to a place just around the corner from the back door. He heard the sound of keys rattling in the door’s lock. He didn't want to use violence, but would in order to complete his mission, as failure meant certain death. When the door opened, five people passed by him. The fifth was a young girl, whom he stepped behind, wrapped his left arm around her small shoulders and under her chin, then, put his gun to her head just as the lights were turned on in the room. She let out a small, stifled scream.


They turned around. The sight that greeted them was one that none of them had expected. An oriental man had a gun to their daughter's head. He slowly backed towards the still open door in hopes of quickly escaping.


"Who are you?" Hogan asked, just barely able to keep his fury under control.


The man said nothing.


"Let the girl go." Karla noticed the slightest evidence of a plea in his voice and prayed the other man didn't notice it or else the situation could worsen.


He shook his head negatively. Her daughter struggled and the man pressed the gun to her face. She saw it and her eyes widened in fear.  The man released her and ran. Hogan saw this and was going to chase the man, but instead, tended to his daughter who had fainted and slumped to the floor.


"Call the police!" Hogan said to his wife.


She was on her way to the phone at that moment.


"Robert, get some blankets and a pillow while I get your sister to the couch in the living room!" He carefully lifted his daughter and took her to the couch in the living room.


"Will she be all right, dad?"  His son asked concerned over his sister’s condition.


"Yes. I think so. She fainted."


"The police are on their way." Their daughter seemed so fragile as he placed her head on the pillow, gently covered her with the blankets and brushed a lock of her long blonde hair back from her face. Andreas watched silently and hoped his sister would be all right.


"Good. See whether anything was taken."


She nodded and went upstairs to check the bedrooms.


Shortly, the police arrived and he explained what had happened.


"Was anything taken?" the police sergeant asked.


"I don't know. My wife is checking upstairs now," Hogan replied. "Well? Is there anything missing?"


"No, but I've yet to check downstairs," she replied as she came down from the upper floor.


"All right."


The police sergeant went downstairs first, in case there were more people there who would be cornered, as this was the only way out.


"Come on down, it's safe!" the officer called up to them.


They went down the steps and found the police sergeant in the room containing Karla's collection of knives, swords and daggers. Her father had made knives and swords in Solingen, Germany, before World War II.  As a child, she had always been fascinated by the blades and had started collecting them in her youth. When the war broke out, she had put them in a safe deposit box in a Swiss bank.


"He wanted something from here, the glass has been cut. Do you have an inventory of the contents of this case?"


"Yes. I'll get it."


She looked at the case while he went to get the inventory and immediately saw something missing. "One dagger is missing!" she exclaimed as he and the sergeant were looking at the book and comparing it to what they saw in the case.


"Which one?"


"The SS dagger." Her best friend Andrea had given it to her as she had always hated knives. Her own SS dagger was still in the wall safe that was behind the picture.  Karla saw it there when she checked.


Hogan immediately turned to the page where that item was and let the sergeant see the picture of it in the light.


"Is this the only thing missing?" the sergeant asked.


"Yes," she replied as she sat in the chair next to the case. "I wonder what he wanted with that dagger?"


"I don't know, but we'll continue our investigation," the sergeant replied.


"Thank you." He put his arm around her shoulders and felt her trembling slightly. He knew that she had this collection, but it wasn't something that a lot of people knew about. Even though the war had been over for almost fourteen years, there was still a lot of anti-German sentiment in England and the rest of the world.


"Why would someone break into our home just for that one dagger?" She was curious. They went upstairs and the police were just finishing their investigation of the area.


"If you would like, we can post some men here tonight to watch the house," the sergeant offered.


"Yes, we would appreciate that," Hogan replied.



[1959 -- Honolulu, Hawaii]


There was a top-secret meeting of the heads of the major intelligence services of the Western world being held at a secret military base inside Diamond Head crater in Honolulu, Hawaii. The UNCLE organization was also represented at the meeting. Two UNCLE agents, Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin were at the base in case Thrush tried something as Mr. Waverly, head of U.N.C.L.E.'s New York office, was attending. There had been implications in some of the Thrush communications recently intercepted by UNCLE that something might happen at this meeting.


Later that evening, a bomb exploded, leaving one man dead and another seriously injured. The injured man was Alastair Covington, the head of MI-6. As a result, the head of the CIA, Jonathan Kaye, contacted MI-6 headquarters in London.


The man who was second in command of MI-6, said to Kaye, "I'll be sending two agents to represent our organization at this meeting as it is an important meeting. Their names are Robert and Karla Hogan."


"When will they arrive?" Kaye questioned.


"I'll contact you as soon as I have that information." They hung up.


Thirty minutes later, Kaye received a call from London.


"They are leaving at noon London time today and should arrive at approximately 11 p.m., your time, on United, flight 2 from San Francisco."


"Thanks." They hung up. He wrote the information down and returned to the next room where Alexander Waverly was waiting for him.


"Who are they sending?"


"He said he was sending two of his agents, Robert and Karla Hogan, on the next flight out of London. With several stops, they should be here late tonight."


"I'll send two of my agents, Illya Kuryakin and Napoleon Solo to the airport to meet them. What airline are they arriving on?"


"They are to arrive on United flight 2 from San Francisco.” As Kaye hands over the piece of paper, “Here are the details."


"Napoleon and Illya both know these people."


"Good. I've also met Hogan.”  Kaye remembers their meeting. “It was about nine years ago, so I'll probably recognize him too."


They left the base to return to their hotels and get some sleep.








Original content © 2001
Betty's Book Me Danno
Original Posted
March 18
, 2001