Deadlands: Riders on the Storm
Erasmus Tefertiller is a handsome man, but who too often lets a sanctimonious sneer mar his good looks. He is always impeccably groomed.
Erasmus Wallingford Tefertiller is a man who is used to being talked about.
He grew up in Philadelphia in a prominent steel family and never wanted for anything. A bright child, he was used to the attention being the smartest kid in the room brought. He often sought that limelight. As he grew older, his pursuits veered toward the scientific and mechanical. After serving an apprenticeship in a patent office, he collected his stake and his trust fund and struck out West to make his fortune.
That’s how he found his way to Carson City in 1850s soon after the Comstock Lode was struck and the city started booming. He thought he could ride that wave—and he was right. He made friends with all right people and made sound investments and came out alright. He also ingratiated himself to the Great Basin Scientific Society and even became its President for a term.
Things were going well for Erasmus—his fortunes were going well, he had well-placed friends, and he was respected in his field. Then “that woman” showed up and threatened it all. Some jumped-up strumpet down in the silver mining territory submitted a patent for a device similar—too similar—to a device he had been developing, skunking him out of the glory. This Geraldine Keeler had embarrassed him and cost him a great deal of potential profits.
When word got out of the woman’s preemptive filing, it was the talk of the Society for a while. There was even speculation as to whether or not the two were secret partners and if the arrangement had soured. Indeed! The was also talk of whether or not any of Erasmus’ other patents were “simultaneously developed” by others.
Fortunately, as what usually happens, tongues started wagging about other matters after a time, but the shame of it still stuck in Erasmus’ craw and to this day he harbors a grudge against this so-called “scientist” from Paiute Springs. He has done what he could to sully her reputation amongst reputable scientific circles and has thwarted her every attempt to join the GBSS.
In the meantime, he continues to develop the latest in cutting-edge technologies in his laboratory in Carson City, waiting for the day that he can rub his triumph in Geraldine’s face.