I’d forgotten most of the details of this scene, and reading it again, I had to chuckle at the sprightly optimism behind the line “Sometimes these things just work out.” The concept of the “happy little accident” was certainly a consolation to Phil and me as we developed the series.

And geez, was this around the time that Phil swayed me from a 30-chapter model to a 36-chapter model? I think so. Probably. As I recall, he kept pushing more chapters as we reached what would’ve been the halfway mark, and 15 is half of 30.

In other words, HR is definitely channeling a lot of what Phil and I had in common as writers. We were working to keep HR’s struggles relatable, and I see from the old comments that there were still a lot of sensible readers who thought he was a benign agent. So mission accomplished, I guess!