This chapter and beyond is my retelling origin story. This particular chapter roughly takes place between Daredevil #25 to Daredevil Annual #1 (vol 1) and slightly beyond. The chapters following will lead into Marvel Team Up #121.
Chapter 1 – My Pa the Hero
People can relate ta me. I’m ya average Joe, man in the street, I sit next to ya on the bus even. But there’s more. Peel back the layers, look a little deeper, there’s ambition, strength an loyalty. I’ve done good things. Well not amazing, incredible or even uncanny. But good things, none the less.
My names Eugene Patilio I was born and raised in Brooklyn, and ya kinda take that outta a fella. Lotta people say I look like that Wreck it Ralph fella, John C Riley, only younger and not as talented. I hear the last part way too often. But my old man, he had talent.
My old man got himself into NYU and studied Electrical Engineering. Born and raised in Brooklyn himself, he worked hard atta school and was the first Patilio to get a genuine college education. He passed with honours and the offers of employment flowed from the big wigs up town. Stark Industries, Freedom Foundation, even a mob from the West Coast, Advanced Ideas Mechanics. But he din wanna wear no tie. He wanted to do something honest and meaningful. So he made toys for kids.
He fixed up all kinda hoo dickies and thinga ma jigs. But no one bought them. The toy factory was going under and the offers that was there before, well, they wasn’t there no more.
Pa started being out late all night, I told Ma it wasn’t the hooch and Pa said she should settle down, cause he’s a great Engineer and all the stress will make her sick. Sure enough the shelves that seemed to be depleting were filling back up again. Sure Pops wasn’t around much and Ma’s cough was irritating us, but food was in and even some of Pop's friends would sometimes come over.
There was Uncle Wilbur, Uncle Max , Uncle Marv and Uncle Manuel. Uncle Manuel and Wilbur were my favourites of his friends. Manuel used to tell me tales of Spain and bull fights, how all the ‘mamacitas' used ta cheer his name. Uncle Wilbur was funny, the rest of the gang used to poke fun at him about his height, but sometimes he’d slip me a buck to grab some candy with. I really liked him. Uncle Marv would spend time with Ma. He was great at fixing up the curtains or her dresses that seemed to be getting baggy all the time. But there was also Uncle Max. He didn’t come round much, but when he did, sheesh, he was always yelling at Pa and being mean to Uncle Wilbur. I’m sure he had that small man syndrome and he used to reek like a burnt out book of matches.
Things seemed good for a while cause the shelves where now overflowing with food and there was cherries in the fruit bowl! Cherries can you believe it. I’d only ever seem them in those shows Ma was now watching now that she couldn’t drag herself off of the sofa. Pa was now gone for even longer spells, sometimes months at a time. I used to imagine he was off inventing all kinds of crazy kids toys, like the spring shoes he used to fool around with.
Uncle Wilbur and Marv used to still come around those months Pa was away and give Ma some packages. Pa returned and told us he wasn’t going anywhere this time and will take good care of us, ( I always thought he had, Pa was great) but Ma got really sick. There were lots of trips to the hospital but they cost lots of money and apparently, Pa said, in his line of work they don’t give you insurance.
One night Pa said he had a job to do and he may not be back. This scared me. He was my hero and I told him he always comes back and makes things better, "So do what ya gotta do Pa". I remember he looked so sad and proud when he kissed me on the forehead to leave that time.
Uncle Wilbur turned up about a year later after that night with a larger package than normal. Ma hit the roof when he came over. She was so frail now. It must have taken all the energy she had to answer the door, let alone slap him the way she did. That must be why the ambulance came.
That was the last time I saw my Ma.
Doctors explained to me that the cancer she had, had been eating away at her for years and was best that she passed, as the pain she must have been suffering was unbearable. They also informed me that Pa was to be released soon and that he will be out for the funeral and I was ta stay with Mrs Kimble next door until his release.
I didn’t understand at the time Pa was doing a dime. He was my hero. I thought they had it all wrong. He made kids happy everywhere with the toys he made? I always saw him tinkering with springs and mechatronics? Didn’t I?
Time came for his release and Uncle Wilbur and Uncle Marv was at our brownstone in Brooklyn the day he came home. He told them he was out for good this time. A changed man and he swore to em, he’ll never leave me again and Ma’s passing was his fault. He was crazy, how was it his fault? There was no signs about Ma, how could he have known? He was my hero. And one day, I’ll be a hero too and make him proud.