Five: Abe Sapien: Sibling Rivalry: Part Nine
as he stormed out of his father’s office, shoved the right-hand
door open with his over-sized stone hand. The door swung hard, slamming
into the concrete wall of the corridor before swinging back closed.
Broom got up from his desk and examined the door and the corridor wall.
Shaking his head he went to his desk and made a note to himself to tell
maintenance to repair the damage that was now evident on both sides
of the beautifully carved door.
then returned to his interrupted work. After a time he felt a touch
on his shoulder and looked up to see Abe standing next to his desk.
must apologize for my actions, Professor, Abe gestured, I never
meant for things to go that far. He’s just so easy to tease.
got up from his desk and drew a second chair closer.
please sit down,” he said as he again sat behind his desk, “Of
course, I realize that you never meant to hurt him. But you have to
try to understand him. He may look so large and invulnerable, but he
is really quite sensitive and has never taken well to being teased by
people he doesn’t know well. He both needs, and deserves, respect.”
nodded. To most eyes Abe’s fish-like face looked rather expressionless,
but Broom could tell that Abe was troubled by this disapproval of his
doesn’t have a malicious bone in his entire body,” Broom
continued, “But he does have a terrible temper and can be lacking
in judgment at times. He doesn’t work well with people he does
not respect or he believes disrespect him. It is my intention to have
the two of you work together and I’m afraid you lost his respect
am not reading his thoughts intentionally, Abe contested, He
has so little mental discipline that his thoughts broadcast far and
wide. It is hard to avoid picking them up.
held up his hand. “Abe, from some complaints that have come to
me recently, obviously Hellboy is not the only person here whose thoughts
‘broadcast far and wide’. This is something that I had planned
on addressing in due course, but today’s events brought this issue
to the forefront. It is your responsibility to develop ‘mental
discipline’ and not that of the others around you. Out of all
of your unique attributes, the ability to read the thoughts of others
is your most powerful and least controlled ability.”
who was now even more disconcerted than before, looked down. Broom reached
out and touched Abe’s right hand, which was now resting on the
surface of his desk.
smiled when Abe looked back up; the smile widened into a grin. “Believe
me, I am not angry with you. I have enough experience with the ‘powerful
and uncontrolled’ to last me several lifetimes.”
got up from his desk and gestured for Abe to follow him. He pointed
out to Abe the gouges left behind on his office door by Hellboy’s
earlier precipitous exit.
I have been spending most of the last thirty-four years of my life stressing
that Hellboy not use his right hand unless necessary. He still has some
trouble with it when he loses his temper. Yet, even so, I am very proud
of the restraint that he has learned with great personal effort over
the years; such is the true strength of that hand that he could just
as easily have put it right through the door instead of leaving these
few scratches on it. Controlling that hand is an ongoing battle for
him, but it is one he usually wins.”
returned back to his desk and sat down again. Broom got out a memo pad
and jotted a few things down on it. “I will have the staff psychologists
develop a series of exercises to help you form intentionally controlled
mental shields that can be dropped as needed. I certainly do not want
to completely deprive you of what could be one of your greatest assets
when you start working for us as a field agent.”
placed the memo in his urgent ‘to do’ box, along with the
maintenance requisition to repair his office door. “I really need
to get back to work now. But there is one further point I would like
to make before I let you go. As you notice from the damage to my door,
even the best of control can slip at times. Your greatest discipline
will be in learning to ignore what thoughts may inadvertently slip through
to you from others. If you do not learn to do this you will lose the
trust of most of the people here.”
got up from his chair. Should I try to apologize to Hellboy?
considered this, and then shook his head. “Sometimes it’s
better just to let things work their course with him. If you go to him
now it could just end up angering him even further and wouldn’t
make this situation any better. Try to be circumspect in your dealings
with him over the next few days and I hope this will all just blow over.”
at first seemed to work out pretty much the way Broom had expected;
after several days of barely controlled hostility, Hellboy seemed to
return to a more good-natured way of dealing with Abe.
Broom had miscalculated the depth of Hellboy’s growing resentment
of one who he was more and more beginning to look on as an intruder
in his life; as one who was trying to usurp his role within the BPRD,
both as the ‘son’ of the director and as it’s sole
miscalculation would end up almost costing both Hellboy and Abe their
to the Hellboy's