was one of my traditional April Fool's Day Van Helsing stories. Yes,
it's a tradition. Don't judge me!
A Long Time Coming
Let me, Van Helsing. Please? I know underneath your gruff and
exterior, you secretly want this."
Van Helsing sighed. Carl had been after him to let him do this
for weeks now, and today he could finally take the pleading and the
arguments no more. "All right, Carl. All right!" he agreed, sounding
very tired. "If you insist."
"I do, obviously. And don't worry. Afterward, you'll feel good
about it, it'll be such a relief for us both."
"So how do you want me to--"
"On your knees."
Van Helsing eyed him.
"It's obviously the only way unless you'd rather I stand on a
chair, Van Helsing."
Van Helsing sighed and dropped to his knees. "Just go slow,
Carl, you know how I feel about this."
"I know you're nervous. Though for the life of me I can't
understand why a big, strong, hunter-for-the-order like yourself would
have such an aversion to something so simple."
"Carl. No lecture, not now, please?"
Carl put one hand on the side of Van Helsing's head. "Now just
relax, don't tense up. Think pleasant relaxing thoughts and it won't be
so bad." Then Carl grabbed him and moved forward.
"Carl!" Van Helsing pulled away. "Don't lurch at me, have a
"I'm sorry." He petted Van Helsing's hair. "I guess I'm a
little nervous, too. Putting it off has only made it worse."
"I know, I know. I should have let you do this a long time
ago. Just don't manhandle me, all right? We can still do this slowly
right until the end."
This time, Carl moved slowly. Van Helsing tensed once or twice
as he felt Carl move, but he was much more relaxed this time.
"So stiff," Van Helsing mumbled once as Carl's movement was
"Yes, I know." Carl occasionally stoked his hand down Van
Helsing's hair or his neck to soothe the surprisingly nervous man.
"That's it, just relax." Carl took a deep breath, two, he knew it was
time, and made he one last sharp movement, causing both Van Helsing and
himself to grunt with exertion.
Panting, both from the anxiety of doing such a thing and the
physical strain, he said, "How was it?"
Van Helsing gingerly turned his head from side to side, stood,
and turned to face Carl. "Good, I think." He smiled and embraced the
friar. "Thank you, Carl. I owe you one."
"You own me many, Van Helsing," he said matter-of-factly, even
as he returned the embrace and smiled. "Honestly, I should make you do
my chores for a month just for having to hear about your aching neck
and back for so long, and have you throw a child-like tantrum every
time I suggested you let me put them back into alignment. And see? See?
It was nothing. How anyone who wrestles monsters for a living can be
such a big baby when it comes to his back, I don't know."
Van Helsing pulled back and looked at him with irritation, and
then with a pout. "It's still sore, Carl."
Carl rolled his eyes a little and urged the man to sit so he
could rub his shoulders and hopefully ease his pain. "I mean, you're
Van Helsing closed his eyes and tried to relax under Carl's
skilled hands. He smirked, but then smiled as he heard Carl whisper
under his breath, "Big baby."