liver B. Bomble, a gentleman of independent wealth, and his good friend Ocelot delve into the mystery of a mighty giant on a mission to set things straight in the world. The story is published in daily installments and will run until Election Day. All previous installments can be found below the current episode.
The dwarf got up and attempted a few painful steps; the run-in with his fan club had not done him well.
“I am the mighty Barribal!” he tried once more in a decidedly feeble tone.
“No way!” muttered Squire Ollie, who was busy testing his own mighty torso for damage. “That’s just madness. He had an immense stature. At least, his shadow did, is what I mean...”
He paused when he reached his plaster cast and felt it crumble under his touch without the slightest discomfort.
“I’m cured!” he exclaimed. “My leg’s all in one piece again! Isn’t it amazing, the hurdles that a gentleman can overcome?”
“I’ll bet it was never broken!” said Ocelot. “I think that Zicboq wanted you out of the way when he started collaborating with Barribal because he knew you had met the giant before.”
“Excuse me; that giant would be me!” the dwarf ventured from the sidelines, but Squire Bomble wasn’t quite ready for him yet.
“Who knew what when?” he asked. “And where is that giant now?”
“There he is,” said Ocelot, pointing at the little fellow.
“I am the mighty Barribal!” screeched the dwarf, wagging his finger madly through the air. He really tried his best but was showing all the signs of a life-sized identity crisis.
Squire Bomble scrambled to his feet and shook the last bits of plaster off his leg. He then turned to the little fellow, who had retreated inside himself.
“That giant...” Squire Ollie mused, shaking his head. “Is that you? But what about those shadows? In the cave is what I mean. And that voice?”
“Echoes and light effects,” Ocelot filled in. “And Professor Zicboq employed some of those same tricks—using cameras and loudspeakers—to turn a dwarf into a giant.”
“So it was Zicboq all along!” Squire Ollie exclaimed indignantly. “I should have known. All that mucking about with plaster feet and broadcasting machinations and what have you...”
He fell quiet to catch his breath, his face clouding over and his brain working overtime.
“That Zicboq ought to be taught a lesson!” he said at last. “One cannot just cast a gentleman aside in plaster, set people wantonly upon him and incite riots in the streets, if anybody catches my drift! We must put our heads together on this, Mister Giant! Join the cause!”
The not-so-mighty Barribal, however, was suffering a case of massive ego deflation after having been so drastically cut to size that afternoon.
“I’m not a giant,” he muttered dispiritedly. “Just call me a dwarf and be done with it. And what can a dwarf do against a mighty professor?”
This remark caught Squire Bomble unawares, so he turned his head questioningly towards Ocelot.
“Quite a lot, actually,” said his familiar. “I have an idea. Come closer...”
Translation Copyright © 2014 by Adrian Meerman © Text and Images Toonder Company, Netherlands
‘Tales from the life of Olivier B. Bomble, gentleman,’ was serialized in Dutch newspapers for many years, and Squire Bomble, his good friend Ocelot and many others have become household names in the Netherlands. This is their first appearance in the US after the successful translation into English by Adrian Meerman, a Sparta resident.
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