Elemoont/Chapter 18

in which the Mosquito tries to tell lunatics–sorcerers from ordinary lunatics and the Hunter–for–Elephants becomes the Hunter–for–the Devourers of Martian Mosquitoes.

Doubling his speed the Mosquito quickly overcame the last corridors of the Lunar Labyrinth and flew into the cave filled with lunatics. "I'll teach you!" yelled the Mosquito. "And we'll teach you!" answered the lunatics continuing zealously to thought, "I'm the Devourer of Martian mosquitoes!!!" The Mosquito even seemed that there was a smell of the Devourer of Martian Mosquitoes in the cave. (All Martian devourers of Martian mosquitoes gave very strong smell of garlic at the time of hunting. Otherwise, the Martian mosquitoes simply bit them to death). The Insidious Lunatic again made a sign and all lunatics began to think, "Just the Martian Devourer will jump! Just the Martian Devourer will jump!" The Mosquito felt that it made his flesh crept, and the Hunter–for–Elephants, who again was left alone, thought, "Just he tries to jump, and I’ll hit on his pate!" His thought somewhat confused lunatics and the lop–eared lunatic even thought, "I'm not the Devourer of Martian Mosquitoes. I'm simply a lunatic!" and to be on the safe side he covered his pate with his hands. Nevertheless, the image of the Devourer that was made by thoughts of lunatics hovered in the cave. The Martian Mosquito involuntarily trembled with fear and thought, "Why did I decide that I could hunt the Devourer of Martian Mosquito?

Maybe I have to run away from him?" and he drew back to the exit of the cave. At that moment, he was stopped by the Hunter's thought that imagined how he would hit on the Devourer's pate: "bang!" and all lunatics in the cave sensed that mental blow because they thought that they were the devourers of Martian mosquitoes! Only the lop–eared lunatic did not sense any blow. (He refused that wrong thought yet earlier). "Bang!" thought the Hunter fancying how he punched the Devourer of Martian Mosquito. "Bang! Bang! Bang!" and the mental image of the Devourer began to break down to pieces from those evil blows and many lunatics decided that it was very dangerous thing to be the Devourer of Martian Mosquitoes even if mentally.

The Insidious Lunatic only wasted his efforts sending them mental signals. Many lunatics stopped to imagine themselves as the Devourers of Martian mosquitoes and began to think about his own head. And when the Hunter–for–Elephants getting the Hunter–for–the Devourers of Martian Mosquitoes imagined that he had rolled out a big anti–tank gun for hunting them, the Insidious Lunatic to be on the safe side immediately imagined that he was a very spiny Martian cactus. (You know, it is very difficult to hit on a pate of such a cactus) Only he thought it the mental image of the Devourer of Martian Mosquitoes disintegrated once and for all. "They simply hypnotize me!" guessed the Martian Mosquito and roared, "I'll bite all!" "Oh! Ah!" cried lunatics and scattered in all directions. Only a few lunatics remained to stand in their places calmly looking at the Mosquito. "Probably they are the lunatics–sorcerers," thought the Mosquito, "They are not afraid anybody." He flew up and tried to go into a power dive at one of them. That lunatic took to his hills. "He is not a sorcerer," marked to himself the Mosquito and flew to another lunatic. That lunatic also ran aside. "And he doesn't resemble a sorcerer!" concluded the Mosquito and here he remembered that his own reflection said to him, "The lunatics–sorcerers never be frightened, they only pretend to be frightened." The Mosquito looked askance at those lunatics that took their heels from him crying "Oh! Ah!" and saw that they ran in circles, somersaulted, jumped over each other, and cried besides "Oh! Ah!" also "Well!" and even "Well done!"

"Well done!" repeated the Mosquito to himself and said, "There is something wrong here!" And all lunatics immediately came to a stop. "We have played enough," said the Insidious Lunatic, "Now I'll cast a spell over that harmful Mosquito who threaten bite all us. Where is my Magic Wand?"

"Run away!" cried the Martian Mosquito to the Hunter "Run away, until that Lunatic don't cast a spell over us!" and he rushed to the exit. The Hunter followed him thinking "And when this running comes to its close?" Running away, they heard that the lunatics–sorcerers argued:

"Change them into Martian cactuses!"

""It's very dangerous! The Martian cactuses shoot with their thorns at five kilometers distance!"

"But only in the autumn!"

"You see, it's all the same!"

Their dispute was interrupted by the Insidious Lunatic who at last found his Magic Wand, "Which donkey had thrust it behind the chest of drawers?" cried he. "Now instead of casting a spell over them, we ought to overtake them! It doesn't matter! We'll overtake and outrun…that is, I want to say ‘we'll overtake them and cast a spell over them!’ Follow me!"

And all lunatics obeying his command rushed to pursue the Mosquito and the Hunter.