Five: Abe Sapien: Sibling Rivalry: Part Eight
notes: This takes place a few weeks after the end of Part Seven.
Won’t make much sense if you haven’t read all the previous
Time period here is November 1978
was a bit longer than Trevor Broom expected for Abe to start speaking.
It obviously had nothing to do with intelligence; he could read at an
adult level and could communicate abstract information using the sign
was already helping Broom conduct his research into paranormal phenomena.
Trevor Broom knew that his assistant Mark Baldwin was itching to join
his older brother George in the field doing hands on research; George
Baldwin in his younger years had been Broom’s assistant in Boston.
Broom was beginning to think that it was time to let Mark follow his
brother and that Abe would be the perfect replacement.
was also beginning to think that it would be interesting to bring Abe
out with Hellboy on field assignments. Abe seemed to Trevor Broom to
be the perfect candidate to be his replacement for doing research to
assist Hellboy when squelching paranormal invasions.
had come to the unfortunate conclusion that Hellboy was too disinterested,
if not too unintelligent, to perform this research for himself. Being
able to depend on Abe to do this would lessen considerably Broom’s
anxiety about what would happen to Hellboy when Broom became too elderly
or too unwell to perform this task.
what was most on Trevor Broom’s mind at this point was why Abe,
with all his intelligence, still seemed unable to speak. He decided
that now would be a good time to have a long talk with Abe.
Abe liked a little tea; he certainly preferred tea to coffee. Broom
invited Abe to join him for his afternoon tea break.
emerged from his aquarium and descended down the spiral staircase into
Broom’s office. His slender frame was slightly damp and he was
dressed in his typical form-fitting dark spandex shirt and shorts. His
webbed feet were bare.
joined Broom at the small table near the fireplace where he liked to
take his tea. They drank a few cups of tea and discussed the works of
literature Abe had been reading recently. Broom then broached the topic
that was upper-most on his mind.
I’ve been considering the problem that you seem to have with speaking.
I am curious about your past and would like to inquire if you ever remember
anything of the life you led before we found you.”
closed his eyes for several seconds as if in contemplation of the question.
I have dreams, he ‘signed’ as he opened his eyes, I
believe they may be of the time before I was placed in that tank in
St. Trinian’s where you found me.
poured himself another cup of tea and drank a little before he continued.
dreams are not frightening, but they are very odd. I do not recall much
detail from these dreams, but have the distinct impression that at some
point in my life I may have been human. I believe that what knowledge
I have that was not taught to me by you yourself comes from what I learned
during the time when I was human. As to how or why I became what I am
now, I do not have any conscious memory.
considered the information Abe had just given him. “Tell me, do
you ever recall speaking at any point in your previous life?”
shook his head. I may have spoken in my past human life, but don’t
really recall this. I do not believe that I have ever spoken since this
transformation occurred. My life has become one where silence is normal
and I am finding it hard to fight against this.
did not wish to pressure Abe to recall more of his past or to proceed
faster in his development than was comfortable for him. So he returned
the conversation to the literary works Abe had been reading.
one point during this conversation Abe brought up something that he
had been considering. Professor, I find that I spend considerable
time during the day reading. I usually read at least four books a day.
Would it be possible to come up with a way for me to read while in my
aquarium? I would like to spend more time in the water.
looked at the panes of glass that separated Abe’s aquarium from
I do believe there is a way. I could have four stands installed in front
of the glass of the aquarium. You should be able to read the books on
these stands through the glass. You often read more than one book at
a time; if you read four books at a time you would probably need the
pages turned about every half hour. I could turn the pages for you when
you indicate that you’re ready; I’m usually in the office
working and wouldn’t mind taking on this task for you. When I’m
not here you could either read in my office or emerge from the aquarium
to turn the pages for yourself.”
door to Broom’s office opened and Hellboy walked in.
I was kind of hoping to talk with you, Pop. But it’s something
personal and I’d rather wait until you’re alone.”
smiled up at Hellboy. “Maybe after I eat supper this evening;
I could send for you to come to my room.”
Pop. Whenever. It’s not that important, really.”
was a little annoyed. It was getting harder and harder to find his father
alone. Not that he really needed to talk to Broom all that often, but
he was used to him being more available than he had become recently.
Abe’s presence was starting to become intrusive.
I think it’s time to return to my work.” Broom got up from
the table and sat down at his desk planning on working until it was
time for his supper.
who was still seated at the table, leaned forward and looked up at Hellboy,
curious about what he was sensing from him.
is this Kate Corrigan you are thinking such interesting thoughts about?
not thinking anything about anybody. Hellboy ‘signed’
you are, most certainly. Abe countered. He could sense that by
this time Hellboy was blushing furiously. Abe didn’t know anything
about romance from his own personal experience, but he had been developing
a taste recently for dime-store romance novels; he found what he was
sensing from Hellboy quite amusing.
on the other hand, did not find it amusing at all.
Hellboy shouted, “Get the hell out of my head, fish stick! Right
Broom, who had not noticed this interchange until Hellboy started shouting,
stood up from his desk. “Son, what are you shouting about? It
might be better if you left.”
turned to face him. “Sure, Pop, throw me out. I’m not the
one who started this.”
sighed, “Well, maybe you didn’t start it; but I’m
finishing it. I can’t work like this. I’m not sure what
has been going on recently, but this hasn’t been the first altercation
between you two. And I certainly do not approve of you calling Abe names.”
moved closer to Broom. “Abe’s driving me crazy! He keeps
reading my mind all the time. Whatever I’m thinking about is my
business, not his.”
turned to Abe. “While you may find it amusing to push certain
of his buttons to watch my son over-react, I do not find it quite as
amusing. I do agree with my son on one point, however; you have developed
a bad habit of reading a person’s private thoughts. This is intrusive
and really must come to an end. It is not something you should be doing
for your own amusement and should be reserved for emergency situations
right!” said Hellboy. “I don’t want Abe reading my
thoughts again, ever. Not unless I say it’s okay. Period. End
turned and angrily strode out of Broom’s office.
to the Hellboy's