Five: Abe Sapien: Sibling Rivalry: Part Three
inaccuracies in my description of Abe are more the result of combining
aspects of the ‘comicverse Abe’ to a movieverse story than
deficiencies of my sometimes-faulty memory.
for Paranormal Research and Defense
Newark, New Jersey
Laboratory in the Restricted Section of the Medical Wing
leaned forward staring intently through the double-thick pane of glass
at the slender, delicate figure floating in the tank of water. Hellboy’s
tail, protruding from the back of the tan-colored coat he was now wearing,
gently waved back and forth just as if he were a curious cat.
The figure inside,
who looked as much like a man as a fish, had soft-looking skin of dolphin
gray, streaked with dark blue or black patterns. There were fins on
the backs of his shoulders, down his middle spine, and on the backs
of his legs. The fingers of his hands, the toes of his feet, and his
underarms were webbed. His body was completely hairless and someone
had dressed him in a pair of skin-fitting black spandex shorts.
On either side
of the upper part of his neck were gills; the rhythmical fluttering
of these gills was the only appearance of life. His eyes were closed
as if he was merely asleep and ready to wake at any minute. But he had
been in a tank in that abandoned laboratory for over one hundred years
and Hellboy wondered if his eyes had ever been opened; wondered what
color these eyes were.
Hellboy was especially
moved by the grace and beauty of this being they all were starting to
think of as Abe Sapien. He then caught his own reflection in the front
of the glass tank and suddenly turned away.
Graceful and beautiful
he himself was not; at least not in his own eyes. In Trevor Broom’s
eyes this large red being he had been raising as his son for over thirty
years had a physical charm all of his own, but Hellboy seldom recognized
this in himself.
There were two
scientists, one older than the other, monitoring several machines that
were attached with wires and electrodes to this strange new denizen
of the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense. They had their heads
together and were muttering vehemently about something. The older scientist,
Dr. Roddel, turned toward Trevor Broom who had been looking over some
reports on the progress they had been making.
we are wasting our time here. Whatever life there still is in this creature
is vestigial only. It appears to be brain-dead and no amount of brain
or adrenal stimulation is making one bit of difference. The route that
I would recommend for further study of this creature is dissection.
I believe that this is the only way to obtain useful information. This
creature obviously cannot be revived.”
that his father had scowled at the scientist’s use of the words
‘it’ and ‘creature’ to refer to Abe Sapien.
The scientist himself seemed oblivious to Broom’s displeasure.
Before Broom could respond to this statement, Hellboy strode over to
where Dr. Roddel and his younger colleague, Dr. Cobb, were standing.
they wanted to dissect me when I was around five years old. And I wasn’t
even brain-dead. Luckily for me, Father put a stop to that idea real
quick. Have you tried good, old-fashioned electricity yet? It always
works in those old horror movies when the mad scientist wants to bring
the monster to life. And I’m here to protect you if Abe turns
out to be some big, bad monster.”
The younger scientist,
Dr. Cobb, spoke up, “I just now suggested electrical stimulation
to Dr. Roddel, but he rejected the idea as just more time wasting. He
said that we would find out more through scalpels and microscopes.”
Trevor Broom turned
toward Dr. Roddel, “Sir, it is my expectation that you will explore
every route, no matter how seemingly mundane or far-fetched, in order
to revive Abe. Any scientific findings are secondary to my main priority
of reviving him to conscious life. I expect your fullest cooperation
in this matter. If I find that you have refused to explore every route
to its complete potential, or if you ever again refer to Abe using words
that suggest that he is some less-than-human creature, I will terminate
your employment with my Bureau.”
He turned toward
Hellboy, who was grinning at the scientist’s discomfort, and gestured
for him to follow him out of the laboratory. Right before he exited,
Broom turned back. “I expect a full report to be kept of every
effort and every rejected suggestion. Absolutely no physically invasive
procedures are to be attempted without my prior approval. Contact me
immediately when Abe is awakened to consciousness.”
waiting for a reply, Broom walked out. Hellboy followed right behind.
to the Hellboy's