- "Her world turned right-side-up again in a second, as she looked at the face of the man with ideas. She knew the type; half-right, half-cocked, half-successful, flitting from one monomania to another like a bee pollinating flowers, gathering little fruit but leaving seeds behind. She was nothing to him, personally, but the raw material for a monograph. The risks she took did not appall his imagination, she was not a person but a disease state. She smiled upon him, slowly, wildly, knowing him then for her ally in the enemy camp."
- ―Cordelia meets Vaagen[src]
Captain Vaagen, later Dr. Vaagen, was a research biochemist who spent time working at the Barrayaran Imperial Military Hospital developing military poisons and antidotes. When Cordelia Vorkosigan was searching for someone who would be willing to try to save her son from the damages resulting from the soltoxin antidote, he was the one who offered to do so, finding a surgeon friend to help with the operation.