I think it is probably both. Its pointless to the story, but I guess trying to call attention to gay characters counts as a point.
You're not getting what I'm saying, so let me spell it out even more bluntly. It wasn't "trying to call attention to gay characters." It was doing exactly the opposite of that: treating them simply as normal characters, to write them the same way one would write anyone else -- which means occasionally involving them in romantic storylines. It wasn't the authors making a big deal out of their gayness -- it's just you
. That's why I asked if you'd think it was calling attention to heterosexuality if the story had been exactly the same except for one of the characters being female. You admitted that you wouldn't. Which means you
have a double standard. Don't blame the authors for that.
It did feel like thats the main reason they were there, even beyond the potential romance with each other. What did we get about either character? One was the boyfriend of a extra who got killed in First Contact, and he's a friend of Nurse Ogawa.
Ranul Keru is a character whom Andy Mangels & Mike Martin established in TNG: Section 31: Rogue
and revisited in Worlds of Deep Space Nine -- Trill: Rejoined
before bringing him into the Titan
series. He was given a lot of development over the course of their books, driven mainly by the fact that he lost his spouse to the Borg and was changed by that tragedy, as anyone would be. He left his post as a stellar cartographer, taking a sabbatical to tend the symbiont pools on Trill and try to find himself, and then returned to Starfleet but transferred to security. As I recall it, Keru's arc in Taking Wing
was mainly about how he was still coping with that loss in a variety of ways, including being uncomfortable with the cyborg crewmember Torvig and being saddled with unwelcome romantic attentions. It wasn't about him "being gay" any more than it was about him being a biped. That's just part of his description, not the point of the story. The story was about how a widower copes with unwanted romantic overtures. The emotions involved there are the same for everyone, regardless of the sexes of the people involved.
I mean, they weren't going to be main characters. Keru was basically filling in until Tuvok showed up...
Completely untrue. Keru continues to be a main character as Titan
's security chief, alongside Tuvok as its tactical officer. Most Trek series combine the two responsibilities (the former focused on events within the ship, the latter on events outside it) under a single character's purview, but the developers of Titan
chose to separate them. And as stated, Mangels & Martin established Keru as a recurring character in their works before TTN began.