Meanwhile, Empath was in Greedy’s kitchen, trying out something new that Greedy had invented with the help of Handy’s new cereal-making machine. Greedy handed Empath a bowl full of round pink and blue nuggets, which made Empath curious as to what this is supposed to be.
“What exactly is this kind of cereal, Greedy?” Empath asked.
“It’s a cereal that’s supposed to not only look like little smurfberries, but also taste like them,” Greedy answered. “That’s because these were smurfed with the flavor of actual smurfberries in them. Try one and smurf how they taste.”
Empath decided to do just that. He took a single nugget of cereal out of the bowl and put it in his mouth. His eyes grew wide as he noticed the taste of the nugget. “It’s rather sweet, but it does taste like a smurfberry…only a bit crunchy,” he commented.
“Here, Empath, smurf this with a bit of milk,” Greedy suggested, pouring a bit of milk into the cereal bowl and handing Empath a spoon.
Empath scooped up a spoon full of the nuggets with some milk and put it into his mouth. He now noticed that the sweetness of the cereal had increased with the milk added to it, but the nuggets still stayed crunchy. He couldn’t help but take another spoonful of the cereal. Greedy watched with delight as Empath ate several more spoonfuls, enjoying every single taste.
“This cereal is truly delicious, Greedy,” Empath remarked, finishing his seventh spoonful. “What exactly do you call this kind of cereal, anyway?”
“Gee, I was just wondering about that mysmurf,” Greedy pondered. “I was thinking of smurfing with something like Smurfberry Crispies or Smurfberry Crunchies. What do you think about either of those names?”
Empath thought about that for a moment. “This smurf would have to go with Smurfberry Crunchies, simply because of how it tastes. Do you have anymore of this kind of cereal in your kitchen?”
“Just a single jar full of it, Empath,” Greedy answered. “But if it’s really that good, then I would smurftainly want to smurf more of this so that every Smurf in the village gets to smurf this new kind of cereal. It would smurfly be a break from having to smurf those bland kind of cereals like the corn flakes and the toasted O’s. Painter and Printer said that they would smurf the boxes for this cereal, so now that I have the name to smurf with the cereal, I can have them smurf its name right on the box. Just think of it – ‘Greedy’s Smurfberry Crunchies: a super smurfy breakfast cereal.’”
Empath laughed at that. “Greedy, you sound like somebody doing one of those advertisements on a window-vision program. It’s too bad those window-visions don’t function anymore, or else you could have had a format through which you could have showed the whole village the greatness of your new cereal invention.”
“Yeah, well, I do miss those things as well,” Greedy said, laughing with Empath at the thought. “But can you imagine the kind of adsmurftisment that would smurf with this product? I’m already smurfing of having Smurfette, Painter, Brainy, Vanity, Grouchy, Clumsy, and even Papa Smurf be part of the window-vision ad, and we can have the Village Smurphony Orchestra do the music for it. I bet even the Smurflings can’t resist waking up in the mornings to smurf this on their breakfast table, with or without the ad.”
“This smurf only hopes that this cereal won’t give them more energy than they already have to get them through the day,” Empath humored as he devoured another spoonful of the cereal. It was then that Empath noticed a piece of paper sailing into the kitchen through an open window, landing on the floor in front of them.
“Now where do you suppose that smurfed from?” Greedy wondered.
Empath picked up the piece of paper and noticed that it had crayon markings on it. “It looks like it’s one of Sassette’s drawings, Greedy,” Empath answered as he examined the style of the artwork. “It’s the crude form of a female figure, all colored in purple, with a rather hideous face and sparkly stars coming from her hands, possibly indicating that she is a sorceress or something. And there’s a name above the picture: AVENGELICA.” Empath suddenly flinched as he continued to examine the picture. “This smurf senses that Sassette must have had a disturbing nightmare that she couldn’t tell anybody else about, so she had to put what she saw in this nightmare on this paper.”
“Poor Sassette,” Greedy sighed heavily. “No wonder she’s been besmurfing so strangely all of a sudden, Empath, as if she truly hates our guts for us being male Smurfs and all. I thought my making sure she smurfs everything on her plate before she smurfs her dessert might be the cause of her smurfing that way even towards me.”
“There’s something going on with Sassette beyond her recent behaviors that this smurf needs to talk to Papa Smurf about, and what’s on this piece of paper looks like a clue as to what’s happening,” Empath reasoned. He handed the bowl of cereal to Greedy as he headed out of the kitchen toward Papa Smurf’s laboratory. “By the way, Greedy, thanks for letting this smurf try out your new cereal invention. This smurf agrees that the whole village will find it just as enjoyable as this smurf did eating it.”
Greedy ate the rest of the cereal that was in the bowl. "I sure hope Empath can help Sassette with whatever problem she's smurfing through," he said to himself as he ate.
At Papa Smurf's laboratory, Nat, Snappy, and Slouchy were talking to Papa Smurf about Sassette's recent behaviors while Smurfette was there doing some cleaning.
"I am fully aware of Sassette's behavior problems, my little Smurflings," Papa Smurf finally said, stroking his beard while he was listening. "The adult Smurfs have been reporting problems of their own smurfing with how she's been smurfing with them lately."
"But what are you going to smurf about it, Papa Smurf?" Nat asked.
"I'll have Smurfette privately talk to her to see what's smurfing on that's making her behave that way," Papa Smurf answered. "In the meantime, try not to provoke her into smurfing something that may make her more upset at you than she actually is. It just might be a passing phase she's smurfing through."
"You mean, she's starting to smurf through things like what Smurfette goes through every month when she gets unsmurfy?" Snappy asked.
"That's part of her growing up to become a Smurfette, Snappy, but regardless of what it actually is, you should control how you smurf around her just in case it may be that something that makes Smurfettes upset," Papa Smurf replied.
"I just wish she didn't act like we boy Smurfs were her enemies all of a sudden, Papa Smurf," Slouchy said.
"I'm sure she appreciates your friendship towards her ever since you smurfed her into being from the formula that Gargamel created, Slouchy," Papa Smurf said. "Now run along and don't worry about Sassette. I'll smurf care of her."
"Yes, Papa Smurf," the three boy Smurflings said together before they ran out of the laboratory.
"Poor Sassette," Smurfette said as she finished her cleaning. "I really wonder what's wrong with her that's making her smurf that way towards the male Smurfs."
"It just may be what's natural for young Smurflings like her to go through when they grow to become Smurfettes like you, Smurfette," Papa Smurf said. "Besides that, I do not know what actually may be the cause of it."
"Papa Smurf! Papa Smurf!" Empath called out as he entered into the laboratory. "This smurf was with Greedy trying out his new breakfast cereal creation when this picture that supposedly came from Sassette flew into the kitchen. There's something about the picture that you need to see that you should look into."
Empath handed Papa Smurf the picture, which he then shared with Smurfette. "Oh dear, it looks like Sassette has been smurfing through a terrible nightmare," Smurfette said when she looked at the picture.
Papa Smurf studied the picture carefully when he noticed the name printed on it. "Avengelica. Hmmmm...there's something about that name that sounds familiar, if I only knew where it is that I smurfed across this particular name."
"This smurf was sensing feelings of particular dread that were coming from this picture, as if whoever Sassette was drawing in this picture was trying to manipulate her for some unknown reason," Empath said.
"Then that must be behind whatever's causing Sassette to misbehave recently," Papa Smurf surmised. "Empath, I think it's best that you have a personal talk with Sassette to find out what's smurfing on with her that would make her smurf this picture."
"I should go with Empath, just in case Sassette doesn't feel comfortable smurfing with him about what's smurfing on with her," Smurfette suggested.
"Very well then," Papa Smurf said, handing the picture to Smurfette. "I will smurf through my books and try to smurf into contact with Homnibus to see if there's anything he might know about the Avengelica who may be haunting Sassette's dreams."
"This smurf understands and acknowledges, Papa Smurf," Empath said before he and Smurfette left the laboratory together.
Meanwhile, Tapper was busy in his distillery working on brewing a new batch of sarsaparilla ale when he felt something driving him to his knees, forcing him to pray for someone at that moment.
"Yes, Father, I understand," he said as he clasped his hands together while kneeling to pray. "Oh, Lord God Almighty, I pray for my little sister Sassette, that you smurf a hedge of protection around her and guard her innocent soul from whatever it is that may be attacking her. I do not know exactly what it is, but I trust in the power of the name of Your only begotten Son Jesus that it shall bow down to You and confess that Jesus is Lord to Your glory, Oh Heavenly Father. For all things in heaven and on earth and under the earth will submit to You, because they were created by You for Your purpose and pleasure. In the name of Your only begotten Son, I pray. Amen."
Tapper spent such a long time in prayer that he didn't notice Duncan coming down into the distillery to check up on his friend. "Michty me, laddie, are you all right?" he asked, sounding concerned.
"Forgive me, my friend, for I have smurfed something in my spirit that I feel is going to attack us today, and if we're not prepared for it, we may be consumed by what will attack us," Tapper said.
"But what is it that's going to attack us?" Duncan asked.
"An age-old evil that's been smurfing through females through the ages...a Jezebel spirit, if you will," Tapper answered. "I don't know how it smurfed its way into our village, but it smurfs a very intense hatred of males that will manifest itself through the most innocent of vessels."
"You mean that this 'Jezebel spirit' is going to use Smurfette to attack us?" Duncan asked, sounding a bit bewildered. "I can't imagine that someone like her is going to be used for that spirit's evil purpose."
"I don't mean her, Duncan," Tapper replied. "I mean the youngest female vessel among us...our sweet little Sassette. Somehow Gargamel must have smurfed something in the formula that created her that the Smurflings have smurfed in their creation of her that's starting to manifest itself in her."
"Oh no, not that little ginger lassie!" Duncan exclaimed. "I hope we can smurf an end to whatever's trying to smurf control of her before it's too late."
"This smurfs to be a spiritual battle that I'm going to have to fight alone if there's a chance that we can save Sassette from this force of wickedness that's trying to consume her," Tapper said.
Duncan understood what his friend was trying to say. "Aye, laddie. I'm going to smurf you all the space you need to smurf this battle of spirits," he said before he left the distillery.
Sassette was sitting at her desk working on another drawing when she heard a knock on the door. She went to open the door, and found Empath and Smurfette standing outside. "Empath! Smurfette! What do you want?" she asked.
"Empath found one of your drawings in Greedy's kitchen this morning, Sassette," Smurfette answered as she produced the drawing she was carrying.
"Oh, uh, thank you, Smurfette," Sassette said as she took the drawing from Smurfette. She glared at Empath as if he did something wrong to her by just simply showing up at her door. Empath tried to pay no attention to that look on her face.
"This smurf senses that something in your dreams is troubling you that may be causing you to act very hostile toward your fellow Smurfs," Empath said. "We would like to privately talk to you to find out what's going on."
"I don't want to talk to you, Empath," Sassette said with a hint of anger in her voice. "Smurfette is the only one that I want to talk to."
Smurfette sighed. "Very well. Empath can wait outside until we're finished, to make sure nobody dissmurfs us while we're talking."
"This smurf understands and acknowledges, Smurfette," Empath said, nodding in agreement. He watched as Smurfette entered the playhouse and Sassette closed the door behind her, then stood outside by the door, passively using his telepathy to sense whatever emotions Sassette may be feeling at the moment.
"What's wrong, Sassette?" Smurfette asked. "Why are you acting so unsmurfy toward the male Smurfs? Have they smurfed something wrong to you?"
"I don't think so, but I feel that they all hate me because I'm a girl Smurf, and that I'll never be a real Smurf like them," Sassette answered.
"Nobody in this village hates you because of that, Sassette," Smurfette said. "In fact, the entire village thinks you're a very special little Smurf, even if you were created from the same formula Gargamel used to create me."
"But why do I feel like everybody's been lying to me about that?" Sassette asked. "I've been having dreams that I have been with the grown-up Smurfs when they were just Smurflings themselves, and they were all smurfing fun of me because of how I was as a little tomsmurf."
"But why would they smurf that to you if you haven't been smurfed into creation since then?" Smurfette asked.
"I don't know, but then I smurf out into the forest and I meet this lady in purple who calls herself Avengelica," Sassette answered. "She says that I can smurf revenge on those who hurt me, and then I'm surrounded by this purple mist and her eyes become large and shining, and it was so scary to smurf at."
"Well, I'm sure that the whole thing was just nothing more than a nightmare, Sassette," Smurfette said, trying to sound comforting. "Who knows if this is something that was smurfed over from when the Smurflings created you with the formula a few years ago."
"But this just feels too real to be a nightmare, Smurfette," Sassette said. "It's like everything I knew about my life is nothing but a lie, and I'm being smurfed the truth of what my real life was, and I want to smurf my revenge on everybody who smurfed my life into what it is now."
"Papa Smurf is trying to find out who this Avengelica is and will smurf his best to protect you from her when he does, Sassette," Smurfette said. "For now, you should remember that all your fellow Smurflings and all your fellow grown-up Smurfs are your friends. I know boy Smurfs can be hard to smurf along with at times and can do very unsmurfy things, but we need them just as much as they need us girl Smurfs, because our lives would not be complete without each other."
"Would you still be my sister, even if I know what my real life is actually like?" Sassette asked.
"Of course I will, Sassette," Smurfette said as she gave Sassette a big hug.
Meanwhile, Empath was outside the playhouse, passively sensing Sassette's emotions when he felt something very dark and disturbing coming from her. It felt like some evil spirit was trying to take control of her, and it filled him with the same sense of dread that he did when he found Sassette's drawing of Avengelica. It was like a very intense hatred of males that made Empath feel ashamed of himself for ever being born a male, a hatred that was very cold and destructive toward anything or anyone that had a Y chromosome.
At that moment, Hefty and Handy passed by the playhouse. "Hello, Empath," Handy greeted. "What are you doing outside the playhouse right now?"
"This smurf is making sure that Smurfette and Sassette are not disturbed while they are having a private conversation together about something important, Handy," Empath answered.
"You mean like how Sassette's being acting around us lately, for some reason that I don't know?" Hefty asked.
"She seems to be hating you the most of all, Hefty, but I can't figure out why," Handy said.
"Neither can I, but I swear that I haven't smurfed anything to Sassette that would make her smurf at her like I'm her worst enemy," Hefty said.
"You were a really terrible Smurf to most of us when we were Smurflings, Hefty," Handy said.
"Yeah, but how does that translate into me smurfing anything to Sassette, since she was only created about a few years ago by the Smurflings?" Hefty asked.
"I just don't know," Handy answered. "Some Smurfs still think you act like a big jerk around here, like you were more important than anyone else."
"The only Smurf that I don't want around here is Empath, Handy," Hefty said. "And if I act like a jerk towards him because of that, whose smurfness is it to know that anyway?"
"This smurf will not try to take that personally, Hefty, but hopefully we will discover what's bothering Sassette and find a solution that will bring peace to all of us," Empath said.
"Boy oh smurf, I only hope so, Empath," Handy said. "I'll smurf the situation in your hands and Papa Smurf's, if he already knows about it from us."
"Come on, Handy, let's leave the star-face alone to let him smurf with Sassette's problems," Hefty said.
"I just wish you'd stop calling Empath 'star face', Hefty," Handy said.
Sometime after Hefty and Handy had walked on, Smurfette joined Empath as she left the playhouse. They walked out of earshot so that they could discuss the conversation with each other without Sassette knowing about it.
"She seemed very frightened, Empath," Smurfette said. "She believes that this Avengelica is making her believe that her whole life is a lie and that she's been tormented by the adult Smurfs when they were just Smurflings."
"This smurf feels sympathy for what she's going through, Smurfette," Empath said. "Apparently there's something that's not just controlling her, but also controlling what everybody in the village thinks of her."
"What do you mean by that, Empath?" Smurfette asked.
"Everybody in the village believes that Sassette has been created by the Smurflings with the same formula Gargamel has used to create you, but that seems to be nothing more than a magical fabrication," Empath explained.
"What are you saying...that we were actually lying to Sassette?" Smurfette asked, sounding a bit defensive.
"This smurf does not mean that you were intentionally deceiving Sassette, but that the something that is controlling her is deceiving all of you into believing that to be the truth, for some purpose that this smurf does not know," Empath answered.
"But we would never purposely lie to Sassette or to anyone we care about, Empath," Smurfette said. "I think it's this Avengelica that's trying to smurf control of you to make you believe a falsehood about Sassette."
Empath sighed. "We're going to find out what the actual truth is, Smurfette, as well as who this Avengelica is that's manipulating everybody around here and what she's really after."