By the end of the day, the Smurfs were gathered around the dining commons to have a nice refreshing dinner of smurfberry goulash prepared by Greedy Smurf. Empath could hear some of his fellow Smurfs groaning from all the hard work that they were doing.
"I can't remember when I have ever smurfed so tuckered out," Farmer said, "and I still have most of my fields to seed."
"Oui, mon ami, it is the same with me," Painter agreed. "I'm beginning to wonder if I would ever finishing smurfing my painting in time."
"Yeah, my lips just feel too pooped to pucker," Harmony said as he briefly picked up his horn.
"Oh, come on, Smurfs," Hefty said as he helped himself to another serving of the goulash. "A little concentrated work never hurt anybody. Isn't that right, Empath?"
Empath sighed. "You are correct in that assessment, Hefty."
"Empath, what's the matter?" Smurfette asked. "Aren't you happy with your job as the assistant counselor?"
"This smurf just feels so frustrated, Smurfette, knowing how tired this smurf's fellow Smurfs are when it comes to preparing for this pageant, and there isn't anything this smurf can do to alleviate that," Empath said.
"I just wish they could smurf some of your abilities, Empath," Smurfette said. "That would smurf things a whole lot easier around here."
"What we don't need is an entire village of star-smurfed showoffs, Smurfette," Hefty said. "It's bad enough just having Empath around to show us how weak and unimportant we all really are."
"That's not true, Hefty Smurf," Smurfette said. "You're just jealous because he doesn't always have to rely on muscle to solve anyone's problems."
"This smurf wouldn't mind being like Hefty or any of the other Smurfs, Smurfette," Empath said. "It would be a nice break from constantly being reminded of how different this smurf is from every Smurf in the village."
"There's nothing wrong with you smurfing the way that you are, Empath," Smurfette said. "I only wish that more Smurfs like Hefty could learn from your example."
"All in good time, my dear Smurfette," Tapper said. "Anyway, I do enjoy the hard work, even if I'm not as strong as Hefty, Tuffy, or Duncan, and I hope that we will accomplish more by tomorrow."
"By the way, where is Poet?" Handy asked.
"He's probably still in his house, Handy," Smurfette answered. "He hasn't smurfed out of it since he smurfed back from the forest."
"It's been hours since he's returned, Smurfette," Empath said. "He should be finished composing his Spring Day Pageant poem by now."
"Maybe we should go check to smurf if he's all right," Hefty suggested.
Empath nodded. "We might as well check on Poet together, Hefty."
In his house, as the candle flickered at his desk, Poet was busy working on his writing with stacks of paper full of verses sitting next to him.
"I love to hear the April showers, that bring in May such lovely...blossoms," Poet said, reciting the words he was going to write before he put them down.
Just then, the door opened. It was Empath with Smurfette, Hefty, Tapper, Grouchy, Handy, Painter, Farmer, and Harmony.
"Salutations, fellow Poet," Empath greeted. "How are you doing with your poem?"
"Just great, Empath," Poet said, showing the papers sitting on his desk. "I've got half of it completed by now."
"Great Smurfiny Crickets, my dear Poet, how many sounds of spring are there?" Tapper asked, seeing the amount of work Poet had completed.
"You should take a break from your work, smurf a bite to eat or something," Hefty suggested.
"I don't need food, Hefty, not with my special magic orb," Poet said.
"A magic orb?" Smurfette asked.
"The Orb Of Inspiration...a kind enchantress in the forest smurfed it to me," Poet said, showing his fellow Smurfs the orb as he took it out of its case. "All I have to do is hold it, and its magic fills me with energy and inspiration." He held the orb in his hand for a short while before he put it back in the case. "Ahhh...now that feels much better. You Smurfs should try it. This orb will make you feel like a new Smurf."
"I don't know, Poet," Smurfette said. "You shouldn't use magic to change the way that you feel."
"Smurfette is correct, Poet," Empath said. "You should be careful with that orb because you don't know what it might be doing to you."
"I hate that orb," Grouchy said.
"Are you kidding, Empath?" Poet said. "With the Orb Of Inspiration, I've got more verses smurfed in a day than I have in a whole month. It's just amazing what I was finally able to write with its help."
"Boy, I could sure use some of that orb's energy, Poet," Handy said.
"Moi aussi, M'sieu Handy," Painter said.
"Well, come and smurf a touch of the orb," Poet invited.
Harmony was the first to step forward and take the orb out of its case to touch it. "My smurfness, you should feel this," he said as he felt the power of the orb flowing through him.
Handy, Painter, and Farmer joined Harmony in touching the orb. They too felt a strange sensation as its power flowed through them as well. "Aaaaaaah..."
"I hate 'aaaaaaah'," Grouchy said.
At Tapper's Tavern, Empath, Smurfette, and Hefty sat together at the counter to enjoy their drinks, with Hefty enjoying his own special Vita-Juice blend and Empath and Smurfette enjoying smurfberry iced tea with a bit of mint.
"You think that Orb Of Inspiration really gave Poet the inspiration to smurf all those verses in his poem, Empath?" Smurfette asked.
"This smurf isn't sure where all those verses he wrote even came from, Smurfette," Empath said. "This smurf has read a sample and there were parts that didn't really make any sense at all."
"Yeah, just like the parts in Tapper's holy book of his," Hefty said.
"There may be parts in Scripture that are beyond even the understanding of a man of God, my good Hefty, but nothing from Scripture ever smurfed from anywhere except by the smurfing of the Holy Spirit," Tapper said. "Besides, you wouldn't even understand the simplest smurfs of Scripture without help from the Holy Spirit."
"Well, what does this holy book smurf about this magic orb?" Hefty asked.
"That we should always be careful around magic and any form of spiritual power that doesn't smurf from the Almighty," Tapper said. "It is always dangerous and it has the power to deceive and enslave and control people."
"Oh, dear," Smurfette said. "You think this devil may be at work with some of our fellow Smurfs?"
"I believe it so very much, my dear Smurfette," Tapper said. "I can only pray that Poet and his fellow Smurfs will not be overcome by such evil power."
"We might as well keep an eye on them, Smurfette, in case there's something about this orb that will manifest itself in time," Empath said.
"I just wish I could smurf enough energy to smurf me through the day, Empath," Smurfette said.
"You could join this smurf in some meditative exercises, Smurfette...or join Tapper with his morning prayer and worship," Empath offered.
"Uggh...you can smurf me out on both," Hefty said, finishing up his glass of Vita-Juice. He got up from his seat and left.
"Hefty doesn't like anything spiritual, does he?" Smurfette asked.
Tapper sighed. "Not all of us in the village are spiritually minded, Smurfette. I can pray that someday his spirit will be awakened."
By the following day, Greedy, Papa Smurf, and the Smurflings were coming back from the forest carrying baskets.
"Smurfabunga," Snappy said. "Look at all these delicious smurfberries we smurfed."
"Thanks for helping me and the Smurflings pick them, Papa Smurf," Greedy said. "Now we'll have plenty of smurfberries to make into pies."
"Oh, it's my pleasure, Greedy," Papa Smurf said, before he noticed Farmer rushing through his fields, running his hoe through them like crazy while singing the Smurf song.
"Holey hickory nuts, what's smurfed into Farmer?" Nat asked.
"Jumping jackrabbits, he smurfs like he's had too much of that acorn brew this morning," Sassette said.
"Boy, he's making me tired just smurfing at him," Slouchy said.
"I can see Painter looks very inspired," Papa Smurf said as he noticed the village artist working feverishly on his painting, looking like he's enjoying himself.
"Oh, Papa Smurf, my portrait of the hundred Smurfs is finished," Painter said as he, Greedy, and the Smurflings approached his work spot. "So, what do you think?"
The six Smurfs looked at the painting, not knowing what to say or think. The artistic rendering of the Smurfs in the portrait looked more like something the Smurflings themselves would come up with in art class.
"Well...at the very least, it's, uh...very unique," Papa Smurf commented.
"But why did you paint it like that, Painter?" Greedy asked.
"I paint by the way I feel, M'sieu Greedy," Painter answered.
"Are you feeling okay, Painter?" Papa Smurf asked.
Before Painter could answer, a loud cacophonous musical sound was heard nearby. Papa Smurf, Greedy, and the Smurflings went over to see that Harmony was conducting some Smurf musicians in playing whatever notes were written on his music sheets.
"No, no, no!" Harmony said, tapping his lectern with his conductor's baton to get the other musicians to stop playing. "Something about this isn't right."
"I'll say," Greedy whispered to Papa Smurf. "This music makes Harmony's normal stuff smurf ten times better."
Then Harmony said, "I have it! Play faster and louder!"
The six Smurfs watched as Harmony conducted the musicians again, this time playing the same cacophony louder and faster. The Smurflings plugged their ears and left as they couldn't stand to be around Harmony having any Smurf play whatever he called music.
"Something definitely strange is going around here," Papa Smurf said loudly.
Just then, Empath and Hefty approached. "It's Poet's orb that's caused this, Papa Smurf," Hefty reported. "Those Smurfs have touched it and it's making them smurf over the edge."
"Hefty, what are you talking about?" Papa Smurf asked, unable to hear Hefty.
Empath used his telepathic power to create a sound barrier so that Papa Smurf could clearly hear. "Poet has this object called the Orb Of Inspiration, Papa Smurf," Empath said. "He said that a kind enchantress has given it to him and that touching it fills him with energy and inspiration."
"The Orb Of Inspiration?" Papa Smurf asked. "Hmm, now that sounds very familiar."
Meanwhile, in Poet's house, the village muse looked really worn out as he was still hard at work writing his poem.
"I love to hear the splashing sea...I love to hear the buzzing...the buzzing...," he recited until he found himself repeating the last two words. "Oh, smurf is me, what is that word? It's getting so I can't even think!"
Just then, Handy, Farmer, Harmony, and Painter dragged themselves into Poet's house, also looking rather worn out. "It's time to use the magic orb again," Poet said as he opened up the case.
"Same here," Handy said. "I'm so exhausted."
"Seems like the magic doesn't last like it used to," Farmer commented.
Suddenly Papa Smurf rushed into Poet's house and grabbed the orb from the desk, closing up the case. "Stop, my little Smurfs! I can't let you keep smurfing this Orb Of Inspiration!"
"You can't?" Poet said, surprised. "But, Papa Smurf, the orb helps us with our work."
"I can see how it does, Poet," Papa Smurf said. "I'm taking this to my laboratory for smurfkeeping, because I feel that its magic is smurfing a terrible effect on you!"
"Ah, mais non!" Painter exclaimed.
"Papa Smurf, you don't have to smurf that!" Poet pleaded. "We promise that we won't touch the orb ever again...right, Smurfs?"
The other four Smurfs with Poet voiced their agreement.
"I'm sorry, my little Smurfs, but it's for your own good that you not be tempted," Papa Smurf said.
"But, Papa Smurf, I could use it for...for a nightlight," Poet suggested.
"NO!" Papa Smurf said sternly before he left with the orb.
"Nice try, Poet," Handy said.
"Oh, what am I going to do? How will I ever finish my poem?" Poet asked.
"And what about my painting?" Painter moaned.
"It's no use, my fellow Smurfs," Handy said. "If Papa Smurf says we're not to touch the orb, then we must do what he says."
At night, while most of the Smurfs were asleep, Handy quietly crept into Papa Smurf's house and entered his bedroom, where he kept the case that the orb is in. He swapped out the orb for an empty identical case he had created. He slowly made his way out of the bedroom when he heard Papa Smurf making some noise as he turned over in his bed, keeping still until the village leader settled back into sleep. And then he slipped quietly out through the front door.
Poet, Painter, Harmony, and Farmer were huddled in the shadows outside waiting for Handy when he arrived. "Did you get the orb?" Poet asked.
"Here it is," Handy said quietly, opening the case to show what was in it.
"Just need to touch it one more time," Harmony said.
"Just long enough so I can finish my poem," Poet said.
"Oui, Papa Smurf will never even know about it," Painter said.
They took the orb out of its case and touched it together, feeling its power flowing through them. As they did, the hooded woman called Allura was watching them through a crystal ball.
"Look at those little blue fools," she said delightfully. "They think they have the orb, but in fact the orb has them, and pretty soon I will have them as well."
Meanwhile, Empath in his house was looking through one of Papa Smurf's books about magic orbs and found something of interest. "The Orb Of Euphoria," he read aloud. "It has the power to give whoever touches it the illusion of heightened inspiration, but in reality it is only a temporary surge of power that distorts the mind of the toucher and leaves them physically drained. Its power can be very addicting and can be used to control those who touch it."
Empath was surprised to see that the picture of the Orb Of Euphoria and its case looked identical to that of the orb Poet possessed.
"Great Ancestors," he exclaimed. "This smurf needs to inform Papa Smurf about this orb as soon as possible."