Travis Louie, The Reluctant Beekeeper, 2012, acrylic on board, 10 x 8"
Vincent was a beekeeper. He was quite good at wrangling bees for farmers. Strange thing was that he never really liked his occupation. He only took over for his drunken brother because he felt bad for the bees. He controlled the bees by blowing his brother's magic pipe. At the sound of it, swarms of bees followed him back to their hives, which he carried around in a covered wagon. He seemed to amass more bees toward the end of each season like a pied piper.
One day, a very large bee appeared. It was the size of a hamster. Vincent didn't notice it at first. It kept flying just out of his field of vision. He did hear a loud buzzing noise, even when he wasn't working. He heard it in his house, in his kitchen, and even when he lay down to sleep at night. He thought it was residual sound leftover from hours of bee wrangling. It was that same large bee. It seemed to follow him everywhere. This went on for days.
When he finally discovered the large bee hovering just out of his eyesight, he realized that the bee was attempting to torment him into releasing the bees from the trance he put them in from sound of his pipe. Vincent didn't know that he drew all the bees from the surrounding towns and was affecting their agriculture. He relented and released the bees