We join the Lindborg family in Florence, Italy on the second leg of their family vacation. Here, at the Uffizi Museum of Art, François and Sebastian try their inept hands at art interpretation.
“Dude!” Sebastian whispered and pointed to La Primavera. “Lookit!”
François’ gaze followed his brother’s outstretched finger. “Whoa! All the girls look pregnant. Even that little dude with the bow and arrow has a gut on him.”
“Yeah, an’ it looks like he’s gonna fire an arrow right into that one chick’s head. What’s up with that?”
“And he isn’t even wearing a diaper! Those people are really taking a chance letting him fly around with a gut full of gas like that.”
Reading each other’s minds, the boys looked at one another with broad grins and cried “SPLAT!!” in unison.
Their boisterous and uncontrollable laughter was met with the usual “knock it off, or I’ll kill you” look from Mr. Lindborg.
“Um, what’s this picture called, I wonder.” Sebastian commented through muffled laughter.
“François read the caption beneath the artwork. “It says…La Primavera…”
“Hmmm,” Sebastian assumed a contemplative posture. “Like the pasta dish Mom makes once in awhile? No wonder everybody’s bloated!”
Sebastian’s revelation, of course, incited another round of raucous laughter. This time, it was Mrs. Limborg who turned around to glare at her sons, as Pendragon struggled to escape her arms and head toward the boys and their laughter.*
“Hey, look at the guy on the left.” François still giggled. “Why’s he pointing at that piece of fruit? Nobody’s even paying attention to the dude.”
“Maybe he’s trying to make friends with the tree because nobody else will talk to him,” Sebastian reasoned.
“Yeah, but why? That’s what I wanna know.”
“Aw, man. I bet I know!” Sebastian’s eyes lit up. “He’s the one that got ’em all pregnant, and now they’re mad at him!”
“Hey, yeah!” Françoise exclaimed. “And that little guy with the gut isn’t really aiming at the chicks. He’s the hit man they hired to off that guy. He’s gonna blast that arrow right through his skull while he’s talking to the tree!”
There was a moment of silence as the boys let this new information sink-in.
“Dude.” Sebastian began in a solemn tone. “I think we’re about to witness a murder.”
François nodded and swallowed hard. He opened his mouth to speak as the museum director approached.
“I notice you boys have spent quite a bit of time discussing this painting,” the director smiled. “Are there any questions I can answer for you?”
“Uh, n-no Sir,” Sebastian managed. “I think we’ve figured it out.”
“Excuse me,” François interjected. “I have a question.”
“Certainly, son!” The director replied eagerly. “What’s on your mind?”
“The guy who painted this…was he ever caught?
“Caught?” The man was clearly perplexed. “Caught for what? I’m afraid I don’t understand…”
“For murder, of course.” Françoise explained. “That little dude gonna fragment that guy’s skull!”
*(It is characteristic of juvenile homunculi to gravitate toward activity and melee.)