They look like the very definition of opposites, the affable Mafia don in his cost-the-earth suits, handsome in a favorite coach kind of way, and the beanpole wizard who dresses like an extra out of an old Western and who needs a shave and a good meal.
Each man's friends will tell you that they cannot stand each other, that they cannot set foot in the same room without the air crackling with sarcasm--and more than sarcasm, for the wizard has a hard time keeping his temper when the don is around, and the air grows hot as if it were about to catch fire. They vivisect each other with words as their friends urge them to stay apart, not to fight, that they have enough enemies.
No one seems to notice that the wizard, who so seldom meets the eyes of anyone, even those he has soulgazed, rather enjoys meeting the faded-money-green eyes of the don. No one hears the amusement in the don's tone or sees the relaxation in his bearing when he and the wizard argue. No one has remarked on the fact that the wizard, for all of his vaunted hatred of the don, is willing to walk into the other man's offices without an attack spell readied or a shield spell active; no one thinks about the fact that the don invariably tells his bodyguards to stand down when the wizard is around.
The wizard's friends do not question the don's value as an ally. Most loathe him, but they see him as useful, with wealth and power and weaponry and men at his fingertips. They do not realize that the wizard is not practical--has never been practical--and is utter shite at power dynamics. The only people whom he ever asks for favors are his family and friends.
The don's bodyguards (one of whom has been his friend since they worked for the don's predecessor, and who still calls the don "Johnny" in private) know nothing of this. But they do know that the wizard has the don's private phone number. He doesn't use it often; the two times that the wizard's friends know about, he called for men and arms, which saved countless lives.
The bodyguards don't mention the fact that the wizard knows the don's number by heart. Indeed, one of them would rather not think of that, or what it implies.
No one has noticed that if you put the two of them in the same room, they will end up within arms'-reach in a matter of minutes. Somehow, they always end up together--seated together in a helicopter, battling vampires and ghouls side by side in a dumping ground for the corpses of the victims of the White Court vampires, the wizard trying to get the don, wounded and suffering from a week of torture at the hands of fallen angels, to safety, while the don insists that a child as sorely wounded as himself should go first.
No one has thought deeply about the wizard saving the don's life over and over; the wizard is a hero and a good man--his own opinions to the contrary--and that is what heroes do. They save people, even those they don't like. The wizard's friends do not even consider the fact that the don has saved the wizard's life on more than one occasion, and that Mafia crime lords do not normally put themselves at risk for anyone, save those too important to lose.
And no one understands why the two trust each other down to their bones.
The wizard's friends see only that the wizard has always dated women and that the don has a woman, and dismiss any other considerations. The don's bodyguards do not dismiss anything, but they know that it is better if they continue not to know.
Neither group asks, as they would if the wizard were a Harriet or the don a Joanne: "Do you think they're in love?"