OK, now that I'm finished, I think I understand what happened. The feds (who are the good guys here?) knew that an evil corporate entity was manufacturing Substance D, so they find an agent [?] Bob Arctor/Fred to infiltrate the corporate entity, but the only way they can do that is for Bob/Fred not to know what they were doing ... or does he? Is he not a fried, divided brain by the end of the novel, but just faking it so he can find the blue flower? Hmmm...
See why this makes a not-so-good audiobook? Things read aloud have to be a little more concrete -- in character, plot and description. Otherwise, there's just too much room for confusion. And -- as you may be able to tell -- I was confused.
My confusion shouldn't detract from a great performance by Paul Giamatti, who was very good in illustrating Bob/Fred's decline -- although I wish there had been some cue in the audiobook when we moved from Bob's narrative to Fred's.
And what was with the German?