In Peewit's room, the young entertainer had run a cloth through the narrow channel of the flute to get all the dust and soot out of it. "There, it's clean," he said. "Now let's see if it even plays."
He put the flute to his mouth again and played. He was amazed at what came out of the flute.
"Incredible!" Peewit said. "Not only does it play a good tune, it also makes me an instant expert at playing it. If only all my other instruments can make me sound this good. I've got to show it to somebody."
He went out of his room and found the first person in the hallway. "Lord Chancellor, I've got this flute that you must hear me play a tune from," Peewit said, sounding very eager.
"Yes, well, make it a short tune, then," Lord Chancellor said, sounding rather disinterested.
Peewit started playing, and as soon as he started playing, the Lord Chancellor noticed that his feet started moving, and then so did the rest of him as he was dancing out of his own control. "Stop! Stop!"
Peewit noticed it as well and stopped playing the flute. "Hey, what are you doing, Lord Chancellor? Is this some sort of joke?"
Lord Chancellor found himself panting. "Honestly, Peewit, I don't know what came over me. The music from that flute made me feel like dancing."
"Right, the music from my flute made you dance," Peewit said in disbelief. "That's the last time I'll ever play a tune for you, you charlatan!" He walked away from the Lord Chancellor muttering to himself. "He was just putting me on...making me think that this flute must be made of magic...I'm not buying it..." But then he stopped and wondered about something. "But...what if it's true...that this flute did make him dance? Is it possible? I mean, it just made me an expert at playing it, so what if..."
He turned to see an old woman in a green robe and a white flowing headdress walking past him. "Well, if it isn't that old sourpuss Dame Barbara," he said to himself. "She's too regal to ever engage in anything that she sees frivolous, like dancing. She's going to make Princess Savina an old woman before her time. Maybe she needs a little something to liven her spirits."
"Uh, excuse me, Dame Barbara, may I have a moment with you?" Peewit asked, approaching her.
Dame Barbara stopped walking and turned to address Peewit. "I have very important business with the king, young man. Please make it quick."
"I was just wondering if you would like to listen to a tune that I can play with this flute," Peewit offered.
"You stopped me just so you can perform a tune with a flute?" Dame Barbara said. "Young man, this is not the time or the place for..."
Peewit immediately started playing, and as soon as he did, Dame Barbara's feet started moving, and so did the rest of her, dancing out of control. "Help! Someone! Please!" she cried out.
Peewit stopped playing when he noticed that the music made her dance as well. "What do you know?" he said, looking at the flute. "This flute must really be a magic flute if it can make this old prune dance as well as Lord Chancellor."
Dame Barbara barely had time to catch her breath when Peewit again played the flute, and again she danced and danced until he stopped. "Good for nothing scamp! I'll complain to the king!" she hissed as she raised a fist at Peewit while watching him run off.
"Oh, this is going to be great," Peewit said. "I can imagine what kind of fun I'm going to have with this flute."
And so Peewit went throughout the castle, playing the flute here and there and watching people dance. He saw servants dropping their baskets. He saw cooks dropping their food. He saw scribes scrawling all over the place in their books. And most of all, he saw the guards stumbling over themselves with their spears and helmets as he waited for their rhythmic approach and then started playing the flute. He laughed at all the mayhem he had caused along the way.
And then he saw an old man with a beard and a cane, and decided to make him dance. But as he played his flute around him, he noticed that the old man kept walking, not affected at all by the flute's music. "Oh no," Peewit groaned, looking at the flute. "I can't make people dance to its tune anymore."
"Uh, excuse me, sonny, I can't quite hear what you're saying," the old man said. "You need to speak up."
Peewit then realized that the old man was hard of hearing. He grabbed a nearby stool and got up on it to play the flute's tune directly into his ear. Instantly the old man was also dancing.
"Yep, it still has the magic," Peewit said, smiling to himself as he left the old man puzzled.
In King Audric's throne room, Dame Barbara was telling the king what she experienced in the hall, while Johan and Princess Savina were with the king listening to her.
"I swear to you, Sire, when that scoundrel started playing that flute, I could not stop dancing," Dame Barbara said, sounding very agitated. "It's like the devil himself was in that music."
"Dame Barbara, surely you must be imagining things," Princess Savina said.
"I am not lying, young lady!" Dame Barbara shouted. She then turned to the king. "You've got to do something about Peewit and this flute of his. Surely this will mean nothing but trouble for all of us."
"Calm down, my lady," King Audric said. "I'm not sure what harm a little music from his flute will do to anyone, besides possibly giving someone a terrible earache."
"Peewit's music being able to make someone like Dame Barbara to dance? Well, that's a first for him," Johan said.
"Sire! Johan! Princess! This flute...it's magic!" Peewit shouted as he quickly entered the throne room.
"IT'S HIM! THAT LITTLE TROUBLEMAKER! DON'T LET HIM PLAY THAT FLUTE!" Dame Barbara cried out as she raced out of the room through another door.
King Audric watched in amusement as Dame Barbara left the room before he turned to Peewit along with Johan and Princess Savina. "Peewit, what's going on? Why is Dame Barbara acting so hysterical?" Princess Savina asked.
"And what's this all about, this flute being magic?" Johan asked, not believing what his friend said.
"It's true...I can play a tune from this flute without any effort, and it makes people dance," Peewit said. "Listen!" And as he played a tune from the flute, Johan, King Audric, and Princess Savina all danced uncontrollably. "You believe me now, right?"
King Audric found himself catching his breath. "I can see now what's making Dame Barbara so worried."
"That's fascinating," Princess Savina said. "I didn't think that a flute like that can make you so good at playing music."
"Peewit being able to play music like that is truly remarkable, whether he can make people dance to his tune or not," Johan said. "But for an instrument to make people dance automatically when it's being played...I wonder what purpose it even serves."
"I don't know, but it sure makes for some amusement around here," Peewit said. "You can't believe what I was seeing all over the castle when I was playing the flute. People all serious with their busywork suddenly dropping everything to dance at the drop of a hat. Maybe this thing can be used to improve morale around here."
Suddenly they could hear the guards approaching the throne room, with its captain entering. "Guards, seize this young man!" the captain shouted, pointing toward Peewit.
"You want to arrest Peewit?" King Audric asked. "For what reason?"
"Sire, he has disturbed order and has brought shame and discredit to our unit with that fiendish flute of his!" the captain of the guard said. "I want to have this man thrown into prison!"
"Well, if you want me, I'm all yours...come and get me," Peewit proudly said. He then said, "Sire, Johan, Princess, please cover your ears." He started to play the flute again, and all the guards danced and danced as the music played on and on. And then the four of them noticed that the guards started falling one by one until none of them were left standing.
King Audric, Johan, and Princess Savina unplugged their ears as soon as the music stopped. They saw the fallen guards on top of each other in a heap. "By the gods!" King Audric said. "Are these men dead?"
Johan checked one of the guards and noticed he still had a pulse. "Thankfully no, Your Highness...they're just passed out."
"But how did this happen?" Peewit asked. "I only played a tune from this flute."
"But it's a tune from a magic flute, Peewit," Princess Savina said.
"So let me understand this," King Audric said, pondering the situation. "If a person dances for too long while listening to the flute's music, they become exhausted and will pass out."
"That would be my understanding as well, Sire," Johan said.
"So I can make people dance to the flute's music until they drop," Peewit said, sounding pleased with the discovery. "This is even better than I expected. This will be really fun."
"Fun? Making people dance until they drop?" Princess Savina said in a bewildered tone.
"That flute is dangerous!" Johan said. "Peewit, give me that flute right now!"
King Audric and Princess Savina watched as Johan chased after Peewit, who ran out of the throne room with the magic flute. "Uncle, I have a very bad feeling about this flute," Princess Savina said.
"You're not the only one, my dear," King Audric said with a sigh. "Oh, what kind of deviltry have we brought upon ourselves? Who else might know about what this magic flute can do?"
"Who else would know about it indeed," Narrator said. "While the king and the noble squire had to deal with the jester and the newfound toy he had smurfed, the traveling merchant named Ezlo had stopped at a tavern for the night and was busy showing the innkeeper something that might interest him."
As Empath, Polaris, and Smurfette watched, they saw Ezlo in the tavern with the innkeeper, showing off his goods. "A vielle? A horn or maybe a viol? Just choose which one you want...they're well-crafted and well worth the price, a real bargain." He picked up one of the instruments to demonstrate. "Look at this vielle...it's a gem worth its weight in gold. I'll let you have it for 99 cents. What do you say?"
The innkeeper looked at the vielle and then said, "I prefer something small and less complicated...like a flute, for instance. Would you happen to have one?"
"A flute?" Ezlo said. "It's your lucky day, because I just happen to have one. And what a flute it is, a real marvel. Not even expensive at that. Wait, I'll show it to you." He then looked through all the musical instruments that he was displaying and noticed something. "Oh no! Mamma mia...I think I have lost it! What a terrible shame, because it was a unique piece with only one flaw in it, that it had only six holes."
"A six-holed flute?" the innkeeper said. "That's something I would like to see for myself."
"Hey, innkeeper! More ale!" one of the customers shouted.
"Coming!" the innkeeper replied. "I'm sorry, but I have to tend to a customer right now. Perhaps a little later."
As Ezlo watched the innkeeper go to get the glasses of ale, a big burly man with a beard approached him from behind. "Tell me, friend, I heard that you had a six-holed flute."
"Huh?" Ezlo said to the burly man. "Oh, yes, I did. Unfortunately I lost it. Why?"
"I'm very interested in original instruments," the burly man said. "You can't remember the place where you lost it?"
Ezlo thought for a moment, and then said, "Oh, yes! Yes, I remember now! It must be at the king's castle...King Audric, I believe. It must have fallen out when they made me leave in such a hurry."
"King Audric's castle?" the burly man said. "Aha! And who sold you this flute?"
"Er...nobody did, sir," Ezlo said. "I happened to have found it in the cottage of a sorcerer. The villagers had just burned it down or something. There wasn't anything left except a few charred beams. Suddenly I noticed that there was a strange green smoke rising from a pile of ashes...yes, thick green smoke! Intrigued, I went to look, and that's where I found the flute. Intact. Everything had burned except for that flute. It's weird, isn't it?"
The burly man was thinking of something in his mind when he replied, "I bet that it must be."
"Well, I can't worry about things that I lost now, can I?" Ezlo said. "I'm sure another instrument like that will turn up somewhere sooner or later. Say, may I interest you in another instrument? I have some beautiful ones that you can buy at a price you can afford."
"No thank you," the burly man said. "Have a good night." He then went over to the innkeeper to talk privately to him. "Have my horse saddled before tomorrow and show me the road that leads to King Audric's castle."
"You're seeking an audience with the king?" the innkeeper asked.
"That's all you need to know," the burly man said.