Empath followed Trader as he arrived at Homnibus' hovel. He was
greeted by his teenage servant Oliver, who was befuddled and
confused by what Trader was trying to tell him because he
couldn't understand Smurf. Nonetheless, he called for Homnibus,
who allowed the young Smurf to enter.
"This is the formula that Papa Smurf was working on, Homnibus,"
Trader said, showing him the piece of paper. "When I had left
the village, he was still unconscious."
"Very well, then, let's take a look," Homnibus said as he took
the piece of paper and examined the writing with a pair of
special reading glasses. Then he noticed something that gave him
a bit of a shock. "SULFUR? He was using sulfur in his
experiment? What an unfortunate mistake!" He then turned to the
young Smurf. "Did you notice a thick yellow smoke after the
"Yeah," Trader said. "It was making us smurf really bad, and it
smurfs the eyes."
"I see," Homnibus said, understanding what Trader was saying.
"It's not too serious, but we shouldn't delay! I will make up a
remedy for him." He then went into his laboratory to find the
ingredients for the remedy, but with the first bottle he picked
up, he realized something. "Oh no! I forgot to extract the linden
stipules." He went back out into the main room to hand Oliver
the bottle. "I need you to go into town and get me some more
linden," he instructed.
"Right away, Master Homnibus," Oliver said, taking the bottle
"May I smurf along with him, Homnibus?" Trader asked.
Homnibus paused, considering the request. "Well...all right, as
long as you are prudent and stay out of sight!"
Trader then hopped inside Oliver's collar. Empath did the same
as well, though neither Trader nor Oliver noticed. Oliver went
outside to get on his master's donkey, preparing to go into the
"Before I forget, Oliver, you will need this," Homnibus said,
handing the young servant a coin purse. "This should be more
than enough for you to purchase what we need. I will be here in
my laboratory preparing the other ingredients while you are
"Thank you, Master Homnibus," Oliver said before he rode off
with his passengers.
As they headed toward the village, Trader said, "I don't get
it, Oliver. Why is it that you need money to smurf the things
that you and Homnibus need?"
"You don't know anything about money?" Oliver asked. "Then how
is it that you're able to get the things that you need? You
know, like how do you get bread?"
"Well, we just go to Biscotti Smurf, we ask for a loaf, and he
smurfs it," Trader said.
"Really? And he doesn't ask for anything in return?" Oliver
asked. "That's incredible! You see, with humans, everything we
have, everything we need, everything we want requires money. We
give something of value to somebody like this coin, and we get
something hopefully of equal value in return."
"Oh, so it's like trading," Trader said.
"You'll see when we get into town, my friend," Oliver said. "In
fact, we're already here. Hide yourself well."
And soon Trader and Empath find themselves riding through a
busy marketplace in a human village as Oliver entered into a
street and tied up his master's donkey to a post when they
stopped at their destination. "Ah, and here we are!" he said,
seeing the sign for the apothecary.
Oliver entered the shop. "Greetings!" the apothecary said.
"What may I do for you?"
"My master has need of this," Oliver said, handing the
apothecary a list.
"Give me a moment," the apothecary said, looking at the list.
"I see, then...I will start work on getting what you need. Come
back here in an hour and it should be ready."
"Let's take the opportunity to look around the market while
we're here," Oliver said as he stepped out of the shop with
Trader and Empath in tow.
They went over to a table where a woman was talking to a
merchant. "I would like the freshest fish you have," the woman
said to the merchant.
"Here you are, my good lady," the merchant said, handing her a
fish. "That will be ten cents."
"Ten cents?" the woman asked, sounding rather displeased.
"That's a rather dear price for a fish."
"Well, of course it is," the merchant said as he received her
money. "What do you expect? Everything's going up!"
"You see what I mean?" Oliver whispered to Trader. "Here, it
takes money for everything." He then took Trader around the
village to show him more examples of what humans use money for.
"In order to make money, one must work. These humans, for
example, are building a house so that they can earn money. And
with the money, they can buy things that they need, like food
and clothing. Some are rich and can afford to buy expensive and
valuable items at the goldsmith. Others are not so lucky. They
are poor and have to rely upon the charity of the fortunate so
that they can at least be able to buy bread for a meal. There
are those who are willing to lend money to those who are in
need, but it must be paid back with interest."
"This is just so fascinating, Oliver," Trader said. "This money
makes every human into traders. I only wish my fellow Smurfs
would know what a joy it is for me when it smurfs to trading."
He then saw a merchant selling a sack full of nuts. "Oooh, those
nuts are making me hungry! Can you smurf me some?"
"Sure, my friend," Oliver said. He then went over to the
merchant and asked to buy a handful of nuts.
"Why, certainly, my good man," the merchant said, reaching into
the sack. "That will be three cents for a handful."
"What? Three cents just for a handful of nuts?" Trader shouted.
"What a thief!"
"WHAT? ME, A THIEF?" the merchant said, overhearing Trader's
comment. Oliver became fearful and Trader ducked inside the
servant's collar as the merchant turned his attention on him.
"YOU HEAR THAT, YOU FOLKS? THIS PERSON DARES TO CALL ME A
"Well, it's true that you are a thief," a nearby human said.
"My wife often says that in your dealings with her!"
The merchant snorted. "If you truly believe everything that the
women tell you..."
"What do you have against women, you scoundrel?" a nearby woman
said, raising her fist toward the merchant.
Then came shouts of "SWINDLER!", "YOU'RE THE SWINDLER", and a
fight soon broke out in the market.
Oliver carefully sneaked away from the commotion. "Let's get to
the apothecary and save ourselves!" he told Trader.
Within the hour Oliver got what he needed from the apothecary
and rode quickly back to Homnibus' hovel. He handed the bottle
of linden to his master, who immediately went to work on preparing
the remedy. Outside the laboratory, Oliver, Trader, and Empath sat and waited.
"I'm sorry for smurfing you into so much trouble with the
merchant, Oliver," Trader said.
Oliver sighed. "That's okay. I just hope you have a good
understanding of what humans use money for."
"Just to smurf all that trading going on...what I wouldn't give
to smurf that happening in our village," Trader said, sounding
Then Homnibus emerged from his laboratory with a very small
bottle. "Here it is! It's ready!" He handed the bottle to Trader
and gave him some instructions. "Do not forget that Papa Smurf
must take the medicine three times a day. In about a month, he
should be restored to good health. But above all else, he needs
to have rest...plenty of rest!"
"Thank you, Homnibus," Trader said. "I hope that we can smurf
something in return for you."
"I have all that I will ever need, my young friend," Homnibus
said. "I only want Papa Smurf to be well."
Trader said goodbye as he flew off on Feathers heading back to
the village. Empath flew along as well, noticing Trader's look
of fascination. He seemed eager to tell somebody in the village
what he had witnessed.
The Smurfs all gathered around the center of the village as
Feathers came in for a landing. "Did you smurf something from
Homnibus, laddie?" Duncan asked, sounding eager.
"Yes! I have the medicine!" Trader said, showing them the
bottle. He quickly headed for the infirmary where Smurfette was
waiting. "You should smurf a few drops of this in hot water!"
"Smurf it to me!" Smurfette said. He grabbed the bottle and
boiled some water in a pot, adding two drops of the remedy into
it as Trader instructed.
"Homnibus said that Papa Smurf should smurf two drops of this
three times a day, and that he should smurf plenty of rest,"
Trader added as he watched Smurfette.
She then poured the remedy broth into a bowl and took it to
Papa Smurf, who was lying in one of the infirmary beds. "Good
news, Papa Smurf," Smurfette announced. "We have smurfed the
remedy for your condition." She carefully guided Papa Smurf's
head to raise it high enough for her to feed him the broth.
"Open your smurf nice and wide! We want to make sure you smurf
every last drop!" She smiled as Papa Smurf drank all the broth
that was in the bowl. "Now you just relax while we smurf care of
things here in the village!"
"Uh, Papa Smurf," Trader said as he watched the village leader
close his eyes and go to sleep. "There is something important we
need to discuss..."
"Not now, Trader," Smurfette said. "Smurf it to him later! He
needs his rest!"
"Visiting hours are over, pal," Medic said, shooing Trader out
of the infirmary. "Let me and Smurfette smurf our jobs here!"
Trader looked a little disappointed that he couldn't get a
chance to tell Papa Smurf what was on his mind. "I guess I'll
have to smurf this idea into a reality without him," he decided.
"It will be a surprise for him when he awakens."