LUCKY THAT WAY

AN: Based on the movie and is vaguely spoilerish, but it's my own take on something that we are not really shown in the film. It turned out way different from what I intended, but basically ended up going where I wanted it to go.

Disclaimer: None of the characters here are mine.

Lucky That Way

Hellboy woke up suddenly from a sleep that he hadn’t meant to take. He was alone, but then, of course, he was often alone.

But this time there was something different about that ‘aloneness’. He sat up in his pickup truck bed and shook the sleep out of his head; and the dream that he had been having along with it.

He could still hear his father’s voice from that dream:

“Son, please, you have to eat something. I won’t have you starving yourself like this.”

Hellboy was starved—famished really, but he had absolutely no intention of eating anything. The very idea nauseated him—but he couldn’t remember why he didn’t want to eat; he didn’t want to remember why. He tried to totally avoid thinking about why.

The only food that he had allowed into his room over the last several days was cat food. As much as he often looked like he was ignoring the thirty or forty felines that he had with him, he really did care for his kitties and did not want them to suffer along with him.

But why was Hellboy suffering? He refused to think about that.

The many television sets in his room were almost always on—almost always showing some program, movie, or cartoon of some type. Some of them were even rigged up to show pictures of the woman that he was in love with.

In the past, depending on his mood, he often watched what was playing. But some of the time what was on was just background noise and right now he was totally ignoring what was being broadcast from these multiple screens; especially the pictures of Liz.

If it hadn’t been for his jealousy of Liz maybe he would have been someplace else rather than following her around and maybe certain things wouldn’t have happened; certain things that he didn’t want to remember.

Suddenly, something blared out from one of these televisions. It was a rerun of that ridiculous program Hee-Haw and someone was singing that awful song about despair and misery with that stupid line: “If it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all.”

Hellboy jumped up from his bed making a fist with his huge right hand, the one that appeared to be made of solid stone, planning on crushing the television into smithereens.

He stopped himself in mid-punch and reaching out with his normal-sized left hand switched off the offending set.

Many years ago Hellboy had promised his father that he would never use his right hand unless it was absolutely necessary; smashing a television set was not necessary.

He sat back down on his bed and thought about the sixty years of his life.

“I’m lucky that way.”

How many times had he used this turn of phrase or others like it?

Most of the time he meant it sarcastically.

He often did seem to be plagued with bad luck: monsters that seemed interested in harming only him and no one else, guns that malfunctioned, parachutes that refused to open, grenades that refused to blow up or blew up at the wrong time.

The list seemed to be endless.

There were also the circumstances of his ‘birth’; he had the bad luck to be ‘unique’.

Hellboy didn’t ask to be unique. He didn’t ask for Rasputin and those stupid Nazis to conjure him up in the first place.

In fact, at that point in time, he couldn’t think of anything in his life that was worthwhile—not one single, solitary thing.

Somehow, Hellboy had figured out a way to lock his door from the inside. How long had he been in there anyway? Two days? Three? He was starting to lose track.

When was the last time someone had banged on the door trying to get him to unlock it? Trying to get him to eat something? Trying to talk to him?

Suddenly his room seemed too small and confining for words.

Hellboy felt someone sit on the bed next to him. He refused to look. Sleep deprivation and hunger were causing him to hallucinate; he knew there was no one there.

When Hellboy had been very young, back when they still lived in New Mexico, he would hide under the bed when he was really angry or upset. His father would sit on the bed and this disembodied voice would speak to him; sort of like the voice of God coming from above. However, this ‘god’ came complete with British accent and two feet that wore brown oxford shoes; the same shoes that he was wearing the last time Hellboy saw him.

His father never threw anything away that he had ever loved, and he did love those shoes and often wore them around the office in the evening.

Now those shoes were covered in blood, but Hellboy couldn’t, he wouldn’t, remember whose blood it was. Hellboy looked down, almost expecting to see those feet and shoes, but all he saw were his own cloven hooves and something fallen on the floor next to his right foot.

Hellboy bent over and picked his father’s rosary up off the floor. He must have dropped it when he fell asleep. He had been trying to pray the rosary, like his father had taught him many years ago, but couldn’t remember if he had gotten the whole way through before he drifted off. Did God hear unfinished prayers?

“Of course He does, Son, He hears everything that is in our hearts.”

“Father,” Hellboy whispered, “I’m so sorry, so very sorry. You were the only good luck I’ve ever had. All my life you’ve been there for me and now I’m lost.”

“Son, luck had nothing to do with it. I followed where God led me. You must learn to do the same. Unlock that door and allow your life to find you. Frankly, starving yourself in my honour is not going to do me much good. Go find something to eat.”

Hellboy unlocked the door.

Five years later Hellboy found himself lying in his pickup truck bed. His wife, Liz, was sleeping by his side. He couldn’t sleep. And then he recalled what night this was. It was the anniversary of the night that he had unlocked the door and went out to find the rest of his life. He got up from the bed and went to his favorite place to ponder things.

When Liz woke up and he wasn’t there she knew where to find him. She always did. She made her way up the fire escape to the roof of the BPRD’s headquarters.

“God, H.B., don’t you find it freezing up here?” she complained. Hellboy took Liz into his lap and covered them both with his huge coat.

“You didn’t have to come up here, you know?” he laughed.

“I know, it’s just that I remembered what night this was,” she said and snuggled in closer, thinking that, after all, it was kind of nice sitting up there with Hellboy to keep her warm. They sat in a companionable silence for a long time.

Hellboy thought about his life.

He was almost sixty-five years old now. He had originally been conjured up to be something really nasty, but he had been rescued, loved, nurtured, and raised for sixty years by a wonderful man. He realized that this man, the one he called Father, would never be totally lost to him.

Hellboy had friends who cared about him, a wife who loved him, and a moral compass to steer by. What more did a guy really need?

“I’m lucky that way,” he whispered into Liz’s ear as he held her even closer.

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