Wrote this for a theme challenge a few months ago, and I like it enough to put it on here. I just really love squishy fluffy stuff where Doof is happy and loved.

"Come here, Perry the Platypus! It's dinner time!"

For some, evil was a way of living. And Heinz had told himself he was just the same as those others, and he would always be an evil mastermind until the day he died. And while he never really stopped his general dislike for the rest of the world, the schemes had come to a halt somewhere down the line and he'd settled down for a life of evil retirement (which was hardly evil at all).

A few rooms away, there was an excited chittering and the scritch-scratch of claws on the floor. Heinz set down the bowl of platypus-friendly food and waited expectantly.

It was not a seasoned agent that came careening around the corner, but a pudgy little platypup who acted nothing like most of his brethren. Maybe it was because he was raised by an ocelot.

Well, sort of.

"Yes, you like that, don't you Perry the Platypus?" the aging scientist cooed as his little monotreme gobbled up his dinner.

Vanessa was married now, to Monty Monogram of all people (there had been arguing about this but in the end he just wanted her happy), and she lived her own life in a completely different state. Norm… well, Norm was still around, but he didn't exactly fit that "child" gap in Heinz's heart.

And neither of them filled the "best friend" gap.

It was a few months after he received the news when he decided a pet would be necessary. The pain was… well, to be honest, it was overwhelming. Somehow it had never crossed his mind that such an event would even come to pass.

Perry the Platypus… he was timeless, eternal. A constant force of good and companionship. In Heinz's mind, once the Agent entered his life, he would never leave. He just never gave it thought.

And yet…

In the suburbs of Danville, underneath a great oak tree, there was a tombstone which read "Perry, the best platypus who ever lived".

Death, and the concept of dying, entered his life in a horrible tidal wave of devastation and loneliness. Before the loss of Perry the Platypus, death was something that happened to other people.

Not him.

The platypup finished his food and chittered for attention, and Heinz was more than happy to pick up the little animal and cradle him against his chest. "All finished, Perry the Platypus? Then it's bedtime!"

He had considered a cat, or a dog, or maybe an iguana… but those brown eyes had tugged so strongly at his heart the moment he saw them. And how was it possible? He had cleared it with Francis, this wasn't an O.W.C.A. placement shelter, it was just an ordinary one.

So why a platypus?


These questions didn't hinder his decision in the slightest. He was going home with that little animal, and nothing would stop him.

On the first night, when his new pet "talked" to him for the first time, Heinz started crying. Not sobbing - just tears streaming down his gaunt cheeks in waves.

It was this familiar, wonderful noise that decided the name.

Perry the Platypus II was bright and lively - nothing like Perry the First when he was pretending to be domestic. But Heinz loved it; it made him feel like the intelligent monotreme was still with him, but younger now, and much more playful.

This was how he coped with Agent P's death.

"I hope you did all your business, Perry the Platypus," he said firmly as they passed by the litterbox. It looked full enough - and Perry actually hadn't had an accident in months anyway. It was all just part of the ritual, really.

Once the platypup was set down on the bed, he bounded over to the pillow on "his" side of the bed and curled up before expectantly watching his…

His what?

To Secret Agent Perry the Platypus, he was "nemesis" and "rival" and perhaps, sometimes, "friend." But to Platypup Perry the Platypus…

In his heart, he always thought it was "Father."

"Are you ready for your bedtime story?" Heinz asked excitedly as he sat down on the edge of the bed. Perry chittered and chattered and wiggled on his pillow, and Heinz laughed. It felt so good to laugh like that.

"Okay, okay, settle down, Perry the Platypus," he soothed as he passed a hand over the tiny animal's body. "You know what's coming, don't you? It's been a while since I told you your favorite story…"

Those brown eyes were so full of affection and delight. He understood, just like his predecessor.

Heinz kicked off his shoes, then settled down against his own pillows and smiled over at the animal next to his head. "Okay, once upon a time, there was a secret agent - the best secret agent in the entire world - and his name was Agent P…"

Death… was hard for him. Especially when he had no one to be with him during that time. Francis, of course, was in pain and they were in contact because of the marriage, but… "contact" didn't mean "friendship." That left Norm, but Norm had been built specifically to destroy Perry the Platypus, and that fact burned in Heinz's mind after Perry's death. It was his fault - he had built Norm, after all - but he needed someone to blame.

"Old age" just wasn't good enough.

But he had been right, in the end; Perry the Platypus was eternal. Every time Heinz looked in those brown eyes he knew this. The pain had lessened, and it had been replaced by love unmarked by rivalry. Perry the Platypus II was the center of his life.

"…And finally, in the end, Agent P closed his eyes and went to sleep for the last time. He had done everything a good agent could and it was finally time for him to take a rest. But justice never dies, Perry the Platypus! It just starts over again."

At this, he tapped Perry's bill, and the platypup grinned at him.

Normal platypi didn't emote at all.

But Perry… he was never a normal platypus.

Even in death.