Part 3

Brainy as a were-Smurf continued to follow the sound of the howling, being led mostly by instinct. He didn't know exactly where he was going, nor was he even aware, as his mind was taken over by the feral state that he was in.
He soon came across a traveling showman's tent and wagon set up near a human village, and inside he could hear the sound of the howling being louder. He knew that he had come to its source when he entered the wagon and saw that a male wolf was trapped inside one of the cages, howling mournfully in need of a rescue.
But just as Brainy gathered near the wolf and howled along with him, another voice spoke out: "Well, well, what do we have here? A new attraction for my circus!"
Brainy looked and saw that it was a human with a pet snake standing at the entrance of the wagon. The human was armed with a whip, and the snake was wearing a festive hat and a ruffle around its neck.
Brainy leaped toward the human and grabbed his right ankle, trying to attack him with all the primal ferocity he could muster. "AAAAAH! KEEP AWAY FROM ME!" the human screamed, kicking Brainy away.
Brainy went flying through the room and landed inside an empty cage beside the male wolf. The snake suddenly glided over to the cage and closed it shut, sealing the were-Smurf inside. Brainy just snarled at the human, eager to get his claws on him at the first chance of escape.
The human laughed at Brainy's misfortune. "Welcome to show business, my flea-bitten friend," he said. "You've just got your foot through the door."

Smurfette, Clumsy, Tapper, Duncan, Nat, and Snappy gathered around Papa Smurf inside his laboratory as he found the book that he was looking for, The Book Of Fantastic Peoples. He was now reading from the section about the Werefolk, also known as lycanthropes, and how Smurfs can fall victim to the Werefolk curse.
"'Even a Smurf who is pure of heart and smurfy day and night can become a were-Smurf with the wolf being blue and the full moon is shining bright,'" Papa Smurf read from the book.
"Golly, Papa Smurf, that poem is just as scary as Brainy," Clumsy said, finding himself shuddering in fear.
"You mean one little scratch of that flower turned Brainy into a were-Smurf?" Nat asked.
"Yes, Nat, and unless a wreath of silver root and garlic is smurfed around Brainy's neck before midnight tomorrow, Brainy will forever remain in the state of being a were-Smurf, unlike Crazy," Papa Smurf said.
"Michty me, Papa Smurf, it smurfs like we'd better get smurfing on that cure before Brainy smurfs it worse than Crazy does," Duncan said.
"I feel sorry for what has besmurfed Brainy of all Smurfs," Tapper said. "But I worry more about the other Smurfs should this curse become permanent."
"That's why I carry this silver dart with me, laddie," Duncan said, showing the other Smurfs the item in question. "If worse smurfs to worst, we can smurf Brainy out of his misery and keep him from endangering anybody else."
"You were carrying a silver dart all this time, just out of the thought that Crazy may someday attack us as a were-Smurf?" Smurfette asked, sounding displeased.
"I'm not proud to admit that, my sweet lassie, but I'm praying that I would never have to smurf this upon any Smurf, even Crazy," Duncan said.
"Let's hope you smurf the thing right on target in case you do, Duncan," Snappy said.
"We'll smurf that option only when it's necessary, my little Smurfs," Papa Smurf said. "For now I need to smurf to work on preparing the cure and making sure we find Brainy before midnight tomorrow."

The night passed, and then it was morning. Brainy woke up, finding himself back to normal, but now finding that he was no longer in the Smurf Village, but rather inside the cage of a traveling showman.
"Ohhhh, how did I get in here?" Brainy asked himself as he struggled uselessly against the bars of the cage with no way to escape. "I must have had the worst night of my life." He sat back down and soothed the top of his head, as if he had just came down with a hangover from drinking too much sarsaparilla ale at Tapper's Tavern.
"Actually, it was the best night of my life, because now I have you," a human voice spoke. Brainy looked and saw that it was the traveling showman that had appeared last night in the wagon with his pet snake. The both of them came closer to examine the showman's new prize more closely.
Brainy recognized who the showman was, from the Smurfs' previous encounter with him. "Malakov?" he said, feeling a bit fearful. "Well, much as I would like to stay, I have to get smurfing home now."
"This is your home now," Malakov said. "From now on, you'll be the starring attraction of my traveling circus."
The male wolf in the cage beside Brainy growled and snarled fiercely at Malakov, who then attacked him with a whip. "Quiet now!" he barked. "Get used to your new roommate now, because you'll be spending the rest of your life with him."
Something inside Brainy felt enraged that Malakov would attack the male wolf in such a fashion. He felt that, if he could get out of his cage somehow, he would show Malakov a thing or two about how he should handle animals.

Nat, Tapper, and Duncan went out into the forest together after breakfast. They headed straight for the cave where the mother wolf and her pups were living.
"Could this be where Brainy was smurfed to last night when he was a were-Smurf, like Crazy supposedly was drawn to?" Tapper asked.
"That's what I'm hoping to find, Tapper, at the very least," Nat said.
"We should be careful not to disturb the wolves when they're sleeping, laddies," Duncan said.
The three of them soon approached the mouth of the cave. They stepped in very carefully and quietly to see for themselves. Surely enough, they found Crazy sleeping beside the wolf pups and the mother wolf. But they did not find Brainy among them.
"Blessed saints of Eire, we at least know where Crazy is," Tapper whispered.
"But if Brainy isn't here, where could he have been smurfed to?" Duncan asked.
"Maybe there's another wolf out in the wild, perhaps the Mama Wolf's mate," Nat suggested.
Tapper sighed. "We should return to the village and smurf them alone. As long as Crazy is with them, he shouldn't smurf us any harm."
The three of them quietly left the cave and headed back to the village. Smurfette greeted them by the outskirts as soon as they reentered. "So did either of you find Brainy out in the forest?" Smurfette asked.
"We only found Crazy, lassie, but Brainy's still somewhere that we can't find him," Duncan answered.
"Perhaps Polaris can smurf out with his mind powers and see where Brainy is if he's somewhere beyond the forest," Nat suggested.
"That's what he's smurfing right now, smurfing his time meditating, but even we're not sure how successful he will be in finding Brainy," Smurfette said.
"Then we can only pray for some sort of revelation, my dear Smurfette," Tapper said.

Papa Smurf was in the middle of preparing the silver root and garlic wreath in his laboratory when he heard a knock on the door. He opened and found that it was Clumsy.
"Uh, may I smurf to you about something, Papa Smurf?" Clumsy asked.
"What smurfs to be on your mind right now, Clumsy?" Papa Smurf asked, allowing Clumsy to enter so they could talk in private.
"It's about Brainy, Papa Smurf," Clumsy answered. "I feel like I'm going to lose him to him becoming a were-Smurf, and I don't know how to handle it."
"We're not at the point of losing him yet, Clumsy," Papa Smurf said. "We at least have one chance to resmurf him to normal before the curse becomes permanent."
"But what if it does become permanent, and Duncan has to smurf him with the silver dart?" Clumsy asked, with tears filling his eyes.
"We'll all learn to live with the loss, Clumsy," Papa Smurf said. "As much as it saddens you, it saddens me most of all, because he is the first and most special out of all you little Smurfs that I have adopted as my own children."
"Do you still feel sorry of what you have smurfed to your own son Empath, Papa Smurf?" Clumsy asked.
"I still do, Clumsy, every day of my life," Papa Smurf said. "There isn't a day where I don't think of what I could have smurfed differently if faced with the decision of whether to have smurfed Empath to Psychelia in the first place."
"But if Empath wasn't smurfed there, he wouldn't be the Smurf that he is now, would he?" Clumsy asked.
"There's no smurfing what would have become of Empath if that was the case, Clumsy," Papa Smurf said. "At the very least, we should be grateful for the family that we have now, especially with the Empath that we have among us now."
"I still wish that me and Brainy could smurf a future together with each other like Smurfette wants to smurf one with Empath, Papa Smurf," Clumsy said.
"Only Father Time knows what's in store for you and Brainy, Clumsy, and Mother Nature knows what's best for the two of you," Papa Smurf said, trying to sound comforting.

Nat and Snappy both watched as Duncan McSmurf practiced his dart-throwing skills at the targets he had set up outside his own house.
"Wow, Duncan really knows how to smurf his targets, and really fast," Snappy said, sounding impressed.
"Yeah, but I don't like the thought that he might have to smurf that silver dart into Brainy," Nat said.
"Well, it isn't like Brainy wasn't asking for it after all these years of tormenting us with his so-called wisdom," Snappy said.
"I don't like Brainy's lectures either, but that's the last thing that I would want to have smurfed to him," Nat said.
Just then, Sassette and Slouchy joined the two Smurflings. "What's Duncan smurfing over here with these targets?" Sassette asked.
"He's smurfing to get himself ready to smurf a silver dart into Brainy should he ever permanently become a were-Smurf, Sassy," Nat answered.
"And I thought one were-Smurf among us was enough," Slouchy said. "Now we have to deal with two."
"Crazy never attacked us whenever he turns into a were-Smurf," Nat said. "And he's been smurfing that long since he was a Smurfling."
"But Brainy as a were-Smurf is something even more scarier than Crazy," Snappy said.
"Gigantic grizzlies, how can we even hope to live with knowing Brainy will become a were-Smurf permanently?" Sassette asked.
"Papa Smurf's working on a way to prevent that from happening, Sassy," Nat answered. "Now all we need is to find out where Brainy is."
"If only Empath was here among us, we would find out for sure," Slouchy said.
"We have at least Polaris Psyche, but if he can't find where Brainy is, I know of something else that can help us," Nat said.

Smurfette decided to call Empath using the telesmurf he was carrying. "Salutations, Smurfette," Empath responded. "How can this smurf help you today?"
"Empath, you must know what has happened to Brainy, that he has been turned into a were-Smurf and that we need to find him," Smurfette said.
"This smurf is aware of the situation, Smurfette," Empath said. "However, this smurf is still busy doing important errands for Homnibus and therefore can't afford much time to help in the search."
"But is there a chance that you might help us before midnight tonight, Empath?" Smurfette asked.
"This smurf will see what can be done, but this smurf cannot promise you anything that will be favorable," Empath answered.
"Well, at least I know that you will try, Empath," Smurfette said, sounding a little sad.
"This smurf can sense that you're feeling sadness regarding your relationship with Brainy, Smurfette," Empath said.
"I promised Brainy that he could escort me to dinner last night after you left, Empath," Smurfette said. "I feel like I shouldn't have because of my feelings for you."
"Smurfette, they're your friends as much as they are this smurf's," Empath said. "You're not going to make this smurf jealous over who you choose to spend your time with, as long as you're not going to do anything that would be best suited for the two of us."
"I still smurf forward to the day when you're going to ask me to marry you, Empath," Smurfette said. "I'm not going to settle for anything less than that."
"We just have to take one day as it comes, and let Mother Nature and Father Time decide when the right time is," Empath said. "Anyway, this smurf needs to go. This smurf will talk to you later."
Smurfette blew a kiss to Empath before she closed up her telesmurf. She then turned to Tapper, who had come just as she had finished her conversation.
"Empath's still busy with Homnibus' errands right now, Tapper, so he can only help us if he smurfs the chance," Smurfette said.
"We will smurf the best we can and let the Almighty handle this situation, my dear Smurfette," Tapper said as he held her hand in his.