Part 2

As Timber's story began, Polaris began to see into Timber's mind the events that unfolded in the time period of the story. He watched as Papa Smurf had summoned every Smurf together around the speaking mushroom for one of his annoucements. Most of the Smurfs looked rather uneasy as Papa Smurf stood on top of the mushroom to speak.
"My little Smurfs, as you all know, the Winter Solstice will be smurfing upon us this year," Papa Smurf said. "I know that we're all still suffering without our parent Smurfs being here with us to celebrate it together, but the most important thing is that we still have each other, and as long as we have that, we will still be a family."
"So what do you want us to do, Papa Smurf?" one of the Smurfs bravely asked.
"We're still going to celebrate the Winter Solstice in memory of those who have passed away," Papa Smurf answered. "Greedy, I want you and your kitchen team to smurf the best Solstice meal that you can ever smurf. Maybe that will help ease the burden of what we're all feeling this time of year."
"I'll smurf my best, Papa Smurf," Greedy said.
"And I'll smurf whatever help Greedy needs with the drinks," Tapper offered.
"But what are we going to smurf with presents, Papa Smurf?" one Smurf asked.
"Yeah, it just isn't the Winter Solstice without presents," another Smurf said.
"I hate smurfing the Winter Solstice without presents," Grouchy said.
And many other voices raised up the same complaint until Papa Smurf silenced them. "I know, I know, your parent Smurfs were the ones who smurfed you new presents every year, but this is the year you're going to have to start smurfing presents of your own to each other. It's going to be hard at first, but you're going to smurf used to it in time and things will smurf a bit easier when you realize that giving is much better than receiving."
"I would certainly want to smurf some toys for my fellow Smurfs," Handy said.
"And I would want to smurf my best poems for my fellow Smurfs," Poet said.
"And I would want to smurf my best masteurpiesas for my fellow Smurfs," Painter said.
"And I would want to smurf my best music for my fellow Smurfs," Harmony said, blowing an off-tune melody with his horn that made his fellow Smurfs groan and cover their ears.
"And I would want to smurf my hand at writing the best book that my fellow Smurfs can read during this holiday season," Brainy said.
"I hate reading Brainy's books," Grouchy said.
"I'm sure that with all your own talents, you will smurf this the best Winter Solstice that we ever smurfed, and that I'm sure your parent Smurfs would be very proud of you for," Papa Smurf said.
"But we're going to need a Solstice tree to decorate, Papa Smurf," one of the Smurfs pointed out.
"Yeah, it just isn't the Winter Solstice without a tree," another Smurf said.
"I hate Winter Solstices without a tree," Grouchy said.
And many other voices raised up the same complaint until Papa Smurf silenced them. "I know, I know, and I would like to smurf out a team of Smurfs that will help Timber smurf down the best tree that he can smurf and smurf it back here so we can smurf it up and decorate. Hefty, Duncan, would you be able to help Timber with this smurfticular task?"
"Me smurf with Gutsy?" Hefty said, sounding greatly displeased. "Like you couldn't smurf me with someone else, Papa Smurf?"
"What's wrong with you, laddie?" Duncan said. "You can't smurf up smurfing with a true Smurfsman around here?"
"I can smurf with the best of them, Gutsy, but I'd rather not smurf with you, if you know what I mean," Hefty said.
"It figures that you don't have the smurfs to smurf with a true Smurfsman, laddie," Duncan said. "I'd be happy to smurf out there with Timber alone just to smurf home the tree, while you smurf home here with that peacock Vanity."
"You dare to compare me with the likes of Vanity?" Hefty said, sounding like he was being challenged. "You're going to be smurfing that dress as part of your diet, Gutsy, when I'm through with you."
"That's a kilt, and the name is Duncan, you numpkin!" Duncan shot back.
"Hefty, Duncan, stop this smurfing at once!" Papa Smurf ordered. "The both of you are going to smurf together on this task whether you like each other or not. I don't want to hear you both smurfing at each other's throats this season. Do you understand?"
"Aye, Papa Smurf," Duncan said, sighing heavily.
"Whatever you say, Papa Smurf," Hefty said reluctantly.
After Papa Smurf had ended his announcement, the Smurfs all went their separate ways to put preparations for the Winter Solstice into effect. Tapper saw that Duncan looked rather upset and decided to talk to him about what he was feeling.
"My dear Duncan, what's the matter with you?" Tapper asked gently.
"Of all the Smurfs that I have to smurf with on a task, I have to be smurfed together with Hefty, one of the biggest pains in the smurf in this village, Tapper," Duncan said. "I can't stand how he smurfs himself as being the most important Smurf in the village besides Papa Smurf."
"I can understand the problem with Hefty's pride, but you have to learn to swallow yours and just bear the burden of smurfing up with him, my friend," Tapper said. "We're smurfing the best we can trying to run this village with only Papa Smurf as our sole parent and guardian."
"I never thought I would have to smurf the day when a proud Smurfsman has to swallow his pride to smurf with someone that annoying," Duncan said.
"We'll smurf through this together, and we'll smurf out much better for it in the future," Tapper said. "You know that I'm praying for you and for all my fellow Smurfs and Papa Smurf that we would be smurfed together as one big family."
"At least that holy book is smurfing something useful for you, laddie," Duncan said. "I'm not sure I would smurf my trust in someone greater that I couldn't see or hear."
Meanwhile, Hefty was talking to Timber. "So when are we going to smurf out together to get a big enough Solstice tree for our village, Timber?" he asked.
"What do you mean 'we', Hefty?" Timber said, sounding a bit offended. "I'm sure that I can smurf home a big one without your help or anyone else's."
"Yeah, sure, you and what army?" Hefty jested. "The thing is, you're going to need me to smurf it back home with you, whether you want the help or not, and you're going to need someone to help smurf out the right tree for us."
"I know how to pick the right one by myself, Hefty," Timber said. "My Papa Smurf and I have been smurfing it long enough to know which one by now."
"Smurf yourself if that's what you want, but you're still going to need me to smurf it home whether you want my help or not," Hefty said.

"Apparently you were too prideful at the time to accept Hefty's help, however genuine his offer of assistance was to you, Timber," Polaris said.
"I wasn't as strong as either Hefty or Duncan, but I was sure to smurf the right kind of tree that the Smurfs would need for the Winter Solstice celebration, Polaris," Timber said. "So without telling anyone, I smurfed out into the forest by myself to smurf the right tree. And that's when I smurfed across this enchanted evergreen, the smallest pine tree in the forest I have ever smurfed at the time."
And as Timber's story continued, Polaris saw Timber walking out into the forest with his axe, looking for the right tree to chop down. He walked all around, inspecting each tree for its size: some were too big and some were too small. But then he came across one that he knew would be the right size for the village. He started to chop it down at its trunk when he heard a giggling sound behind him. He stopped his work and looked to see what it was.
There in a clearing behind him, Timber saw that a elf with wings and green clothes was hovering around over a very small pine tree no bigger than Smurf-size. Timber thought he was imagining seeing the tree jiggle around as if it were alive. He decided to go over and get a closer look.
The elf that was hovering over the tree gasped, and the tree seemed to have sprouted eyes as it fearfully saw Timber approaching. "Mercy!" the tree squeaked.
"Stay your hand, whoever you are, and don't hurt this tree!" the elf warned.
Timber stayed where he stood. "I don't mean you any harm, but I never smurfed of a tree that can talk before," he said, lowering his ax.
"That's because this tree is my sister, and she wasn't originally a tree...she was an elf just like me," the elf explained.
"That tree is an elf?" Timber said, sounding amazed. "How did this happen?"
"An evil witch captured me, and tried to make me tell where the legendary golden tree can be found," the tree explained. "But I wouldn't tell her, so she cursed me by turning me into this tree."
"I'm sorry to hear that," Timber said. "I hope that I didn't frighten you. I'm just out here smurfing for a good tall evergreen to smurf down for my village's Winter Solstice celebration."
"We wish you luck on your quest, but it would help if you knew somebody who could remove the evil curse from my sister, kind one," the elf said.
"Somebody to remove the curse," Timber said to himself, trying to think of who before the answer came to him. "Our village is led by a Papa Smurf who claims to be a sorcerer. Maybe he knows how he can remove the curse."
"I would appreciate it if you bring him here when you are finished with your quest," the elf said. "For now I must protect my sister from whoever would do harm to her."
"You said that there is a legendary golden tree," Timber said. "Do you know where it is located?"
"It is located on an island in the mountain lake, and it is said to produce golden pinecones, but nobody has visited this island for years to confirm it," the elf answered.
"Golden pinecones?" Timber said, sounding intrigued. "Well, us Smurfs don't have any use for gold, but it would be interesting to smurf out if it is true."
Meanwhile, hidden within a bush, a bearded human in ragged clothes overheard what Timber and the elf were talking about. "A golden tree with golden pinecones?" he muttered to himself. "Well, that would make Evil Marduk a very rich wizard if I can get my hands on it...if those little creatures would get me what I want."
"Anyway, what is your name?" Timber asked.
"My name is Vini, and my sister is Arboria," the elf answered. "I would hate for anything to happen to her while she is stuck with this curse. We have been inseparable ever since we were little children, which is why I am so protective of her even now."
"I would be happy to have my friends in the Smurf Village to smurf her home where she can be safe until the curse is removed, for however long that smurfs," Timber offered.
"If you Smurfs are as gentle as you are, then I and my sister would both appreciate it very much," Vini said, sounding relieved.
"You're not going anywhere!" a voice shouted. Timber, Vini, and Arboria both saw a giant being with a beard and ragged clothes emerge from out of nowhere with a net in his hands.
"Quick, run!" Vini cried out.
Timber ran as quickly as he could, evading the giant's net as it swooped down to try catching him. The giant tried again and again, but Timber was too quick, and soon hid himself in a hole along with Vini.
"What was that giant creature?" Timber asked.
"They are called humans," Vini said. "They're dangerous, and they come into this forest to hunt and pillage whatever's in it for their profit."
"All right, you little blue man, come out right now with that elf or I'll cut down this little tree to make firewood out of it!" the giant called out.
Timber and Vini peered out of the hole to see the giant standing over where Arboria was, looking like he was ready to carry out his threat.
"Mercy, milord!" Vini called out as she and Timber rose out of hiding. "That's my sister! I'll do anything you want!"
"Who are you? And what are you doing here?" Timber asked.
"I am Evil Marduk, and I am a sorcerer who's deep in debt," the giant answered. "My terms are simple: I want you to bring me a pile of golden pinecones from that tree on the island, and I want enough so I can pay off all my debts or else I'll burn that tree."
Timber could hear Arboria crying pitifully at the fate she was threatened with. Whatever this giant could do, he couldn't stand to see a tree, whether enchanted or not, be treated like that.
"And how do you expect us to smurf that?" Timber asked.
"You two better figure out how to bring back enough gold before day's end, or I'll set this tree on fire," Evil Marduk said. "I'll wait here."
"But it's very difficult, Master Marduk," Vini said. "The way to that island is far, and...there are dangers...a three-headed monster and a lake monster, and..."
"Come on, let's not smurf any time!" Timber said, as he started to rush off.
"I don't want to hear any excuses!" Evil Marduk warned. "I meant what I said. I want gold, and I want it before day's end or else! I'll be waiting!"
Vini realized that she couldn't reason with the wizard. She had to do what he demanded of both her and Timber to keep her sister safe. She flew off until she caught up with Timber.
"Are there really that many dangers to smurf past in order to smurf those golden pinesmurfs?" Timber asked.
"I don't know," Vini answered. "I invented that story about monsters to gain time, but my ruse didn't succeed."
"Hefty or Duncan would be better suited to smurf what we have to do, but there isn't much time for us to smurf them, so it's up to us," Timber said. "Just lead me where we have to smurf to find that wretched tree."
"I only pray we will get there in time," Vini said woefully.