What To Name Your Baby Demon Hellspawn
A/N: This is a follow-up to 'Someplace Like Home,' but it stands alone, too. Just a silly idea. I don't own any of the characters here.
"I do not, repeat, do not, want my kids to be sharing their names with four or five other squirts in the class. Every year in school I was Liz S. – not even Liz S., I was 'the other Liz S.,' because there was always Liz Smith or Liz Sanchez – and I don't want my kids put through that. Granted," she added, taking another lick of her ice cream cone, "'The other Liz S.' is much better than 'that freak who can throw fire.'"
Everyone in attendance nodded. They were sitting in the car, in the parking lot of the local Baskin-Robbins', devouring ice cream cones and discussing names for children.
"Well, come on, first we gotta know, boys or girls?" Hellboy asked, biting into a double scoop of Rocky Road, before taking a slurp from his Oreo milkshake.
"It could be both," Liz pointed out.
"You'd probably better pick out just a good list of names of both genders," John added. He held out his ice cream to the Icthyo Sapien. "Abe, are you sure you don't want to try…"
"No, thank you," Abe replied, staring out the tinted car window. "I'm not certain my metabolism could handle it."
"Well, then, do you at least have any ideas for names?" John pressed, trying not to drip any of his Black Walnut ice cream.
"Virtue names are always nice," but Abe didn't sound convinced.
"Yeah," John agreed. "Like Grace. Grace is a lovely name. Or Hope."
"I knew a Hope once. She was the worst pessimist I ever knew," Liz spoke with peppermint-scented annoyance. "And I've never been able to take the name Faith seriously. Or Chastity, for that matter."
"Chastity? Somebody named their kid Chastity?" Hellboy asked.
"Yeah. Talk about irony."
"Well, boy howdy. That's going to be one confused kid."
"Then I knew a boy named Sydney." Liz went on.
"That's not a bad name." Hellboy said.
"His parents named him after the place where he was conceived."
"Ouch." In the backseat, John winced.
Hellboy chuckled. "Well to do that, we'd have to name our kids –"
"Not in front of –" Liz indicated the backseat with a furious jerk of her head.
"You could name her Nuala," Abe murmured, as if to the winds and the puddles in the asphalt.
John could see Liz's face in the rearview mirror. She looked sternly at Abe. John couldn't see why it was such a big deal. He leaned over to Abe and said, "It's a very pretty name."
"I'm not saying it's not pretty," Liz said, "but it's got way too many memories associated with it. I'm sorry, Abe. Maybe for a middle name, or something."
"Oh, yeah," Hellboy agreed. "Nuala would make a great middle name, just as long as we keep her spear-wielding psycho brother out of it. Liz, want some of my milkshake?" As Liz took a sip, Hellboy went on, "You know what, what would be a great name for a girl? Scarlett."
Liz spluttered on the milkshake – fortunately, she was drinking from a straw, so the effect was muted. "What?"
"Like 'Gone With the Wind.' Scarlett O'Hara. There was a lady who could take care of herself! Didn't take crap from anybody. I'd like my little girl to look up to her."
"What about a real person?"
"I don't know, Amelia Earhart?"
"So she flew around and got lost."
"She didn't get lost," Abe said, sounding definite for the first time since John had returned with the ice cream. "You know as well as I did, she met with a rok and was flown to the Hindu Kush Mountains before…"
"Yeah, yeah, Abe, we know," Hellboy cut him off, even though John was looking towards Abe with the dramatic curiosity of a chipmunk. "I don't know. Amelia is kind of frilly, doncha think?"
"Oh, and Scarlett O'Hara wasn't frilly?"
"Vivien," John suggested. "Vivien Leigh was the actress who played Scarlett. That's a nice, old-fashioned name. You don't see it around much nowadays."
"Vivien is nice," Liz agreed.
"I still like Scarlett," Hellboy grumbled into his milkshake.
"Come on. Besides, if the kids take after you," Liz pointed out, "Scarlett will be a painfully obvious name. I want my kids' names to be more than adjectives."
"Maybe Scarlett can be a middle name," John suggested.
"But we were going to use Nuala as her middle name," Abe said petulantly.
"Well, if it's two girls one can be Something-Scarlett and the other can be Something-Nuala, happy?"
"But what if one's a boy?" Liz asked.
"What if both are boys?" John added.
"… Scarlett would make a good name for a boy too." Hellboy suggested.
"No, it wouldn't!"
"If you want something uncommon, I knew a guy named Easton once, at college. Nice fellow," John cut in, hoping to prevent a quarrel.
"Easton is… nice," Liz agreed.
"You know what name I like for a boy? Jake." Hellboy finished up his ice cream with a satisfying slurp. "Jacob. It's just got a good solid sound."
"Biblical patriarch," Abe added. "Nice tradition to it."
"Yeah, but we're not naming our kids to force them into being anything, right?"
"No, but come on," Hellboy countered Liz, "Nothing's wrong with Jacob."
"But it's pretty popular nowadays," she disagreed. "And I mean, being in the Bible is no guarantee you'll be a good person."
"But you can think of a name as being something protective," John mused.
"Protective?" Hellboy chuckled. "What, like we'll name them Silver and Oak?"
"Rowan," Liz sat up at once. "Rowan would be a wonderful name."
"Rowan?' John repeated. "But is it for a boy or a girl?"
"Why not both?" Hellboy asked. "I kind of like it."
"Juniper," Abe suggested, "Or Thorn, or Ash or Aspen, would all be usable names. Hazel would also be nice."
"Why not Holly while we're at it?" John suggested sarcastically.
"I like this train of thought," Liz said.
"Rowan and Holly would be best," Hellboy said, sounding like a paranormal expert.
"Those sound like good names for girls," Abe said, "But for boys…"
"I think Rowan would work for a boy," Liz said, nodding, "And Aspen sounds nice too."
"How about Thorn?" Abe offered.
"I like the attitude," Hellboy said.
Rather huffed, John suggested irritably, "Why not name him 'Beowulf' and get it over with?"
Hellboy sat up straight and turned around in the front seat. "Beowulf! That's a name for a boy! Myers, you've done it again!"