Although he was one of the most famous men in the world, Henry Peel was a will-o'-the-wisp. Paparazzi could not plague him because they didn't know what he looked like. Hardly anyone did. The only known photograph of him was the one on his student ID at Caltech. He was fifteen years old when the picture was taken. The image was blurred. He never posed for a yearbook picture because, working alone during the summer between his junior and senior years, he solved the problem of the room temperature superconductor and shortly thereafter dropped out of college. Not long after that he patented a feasible design for a fusion reactor. His discoveries earned him a large fortune before he was twenty-five. As time went by, he perfected other inventions that had been regarded as unachievable and made more money - a lot more. Forbes magazine, estimating that he was richer than all the billionaires on its annual list of the filthy rich, called him a trillionaire. He was the only one in the world.
- From Ark: A Novel by Charles McCarry