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LarryBoy and the Emperor of Envy

Sean Gaffney


August 26, 2002

LarryBoy and the Emperor of Envy is the first LarryBoy chapter book. It features a lesson in dealing with envy.


"The city of Bumblyburg’s in danger and LarryBoy’s the only one who can save the day. Everyone is weak with jealousy after the diabolical Napoleon of Crime and Other Bad Stuff—a.k.a. the Emperor of Envy— tainted the Slushee supply with his envy formula during Mister Slushee’s Slushee Slurping Contest. The Emperor has set the ultimate envy trap, and he and his “army” of henchmen are taking over the city of Bumblyburg.  The whole town has slurped some of the Slushees, including LarryBoy. What will LarryBoy do? Will he conquer his own envy? If he doesn’t stop the evil emperor, Bumblyburg will be destroyed forever."


At school, Junior, Laura, Percy, and all of the other classmates notice something strange about their teacher, Junior's dad, noticing that he doesn't move his mouth when he talks, and especially when he tells the classmates that they are playing "Hide-and-Seek", telling them to give him their milk money and for them to close their eyes and count to one million while he runs and hides. However, LarryBoy shows up and is able to reveal the teacher's true identity as the Milk Money Bandit, after removing his mask. After LarryBoy enters the classroom after revealing the Milk Money Bandit's identity (tripping over the windowsill when he enters the room), he asks the Milk Money Bandit where the real teacher is, threatening him to "talk now, unless you want the other ear!" The bandit, now panicked, reveals that the real teacher is in the closet. Junior opens the closet to reveal his dad, which Junior is happy to see, Dad Asparagus commenting that it was really dark in the closet, before telling the Milk Money Bandit that he needs to be content with the money he has, then thanks LarryBoy for saving the day once again. LarryBoy then has the bandit punished by forcing him to write on the blackboard that he'll never steal milk money. LarryBoy goes to leave again, but trips on the windowsill once again, before driving away in the Larrymobile once again.

LarryBoy gets a message from Archibald, who congratulates him for getting the job done, further stating that he monitored the whole thing from the Larry-Cave, while also reminding LarryBoy to be more careful when jumping through windows. LarryBoy claims that his mask throws off his depth perception, but Archibald tells him to never mind that, explaining that he called to remind him about tonight's Superhero Class, which LarryBoy is surprised to hear, saying that that night is a classic double feature night at the movies. Archibald asks LarryBoy which is more important, attending movies or school? LarryBoy further protests that the movies being shown are "Attack of the Rotten Tomato" and "Salad Wars: Frankencelery Strikes Back", but when Archibald glares at him, LarryBoy complies to head to school. After arriving at Superhero School, LarryBoy hopes that he is not late for class, but when he tries to sneak in without being noticed, he ends up tripping over the Norse Superhero's backpack and toppling over a chair, to which Bok Choy announces to interrupt class with a riddle: What do these three things have in common? An overdue library book, a school bus that is behind schedule, and LarryBoy. Bok Choy then answers that they are all late, with LarryBoy proclaiming that that's a good riddle, before he also gives his own riddle: What's black, white, and read all over? However, when Bok Choy stares at LarryBoy, LarryBoy apologizes while explaining that he was trying to slip in unnoticed, which Bok Choy thinks is ridiculous, stating that it's a wonder that LarryBoy was noticed at all, before telling LarryBoy to take his seat and to try not to be late again.

After LarryBoy takes his seat, Bok Choy resumes his lecture, explaining that envy is a dangerous thing, especially to a superhero. LarryBoy talks with another superhero sitting next to him, an apple who is dressed in red, white, and blue, asking this apple who he is, before the apple introduces himself as "American Pie, defender of truth, justice and Vitamin A". American Pie then asks LarryBoy what the answer is to his riddle, LarryBoy answering, "A LarryBoy chapter book", but American Pie doesn't get it. LarryBoy tells him to never mind, before he starts admiring the wings on American Pie's headdress, asking if he can fly, American Pie answering no but they do make him look cool, which LarryBoy finds to be nifty. Bok Choy tells all of the students to take out their Superhero Handbooks and turn to Section 20, Paragraph 14, Line 30. LarryBoy asks American Pie if he can look on with him because he left his Superhero Handbook in his glove compartment, which American Pie allows him to do. Bok Choy then reads in the book, saying, "A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones." Bok Choy explains further that envy, also known as jealousy, eats away at you from the inside and that it is an evil to avoid. However, LarryBoy isn't concentrating on what Bok Choy said because he is staring at American Pie's shield, thinking that it's a really nifty shield, before asking American Pie if he can hold it for a minute, which American Pie allows him to do but not without telling him to be very careful with it. LarryBoy holds the shield, though it is heavier than it looks, before Bok Choy explains that there is only one cure for envy, which is that you must learn to be happy with the things you already have instead of wishing that you had your neighbor's car, or your neighbor's cat, to be happy with your own car or your own dog.

The Scarlet Tomato then asks "What if I don't have a dog?", Bok Choy answering that he was just using that as an example, before the Scarlet Tomato adds that his neighbor has a dog but he doesn't. Bok Choy is a bit frustrated before asking the Scarlet Tomato what he does have, the Scarlet Tomato answering that he has a goldfish. Bok Choy asks the Scarlet Tomato if he can be content with a goldfish, with the Scarlet Tomato replying that he can because it is a pretty good goldfish. Bok Choy then reminds all of the students that "A content heart is a healthy heart", which he has all of the students repeat, but LarryBoy is too busy playing with American Pie's shield to actually hear what Bok Choy said. LarryBoy then bets American Pie that he can throw the shield a mile, which American Pie agrees with but not in the classroom. LarryBoy adds that it would make a great Frisbee while pretending to throw the shield like a Frisbee, with American Pie telling him to be careful. LarryBoy proclaims that he's always careful, but ends up accidentally throwing the shield as it ricochets all over the classroom and straight at Bok Choy, who ends up getting part of his hair cut off by the shield despite his best attempts to block off the shield, while everyone stares at him. Bok Choy then proclaims that LarryBoy is more interested in a different lesson, saying that he would rather practice being a barber, which LarryBoy is embarrassed about.

In a secret hideout on the edge of Bumblyburg, there is an evil plan being cooked up by LarryBoy's nemesis, a cherry tomato by the name of the Emperor Napoleon of Crime and Other Bad Stuff, who then calls out for his soldiers, two sweet potatoes named Frank and Jesse, before Jesse proclaims to the readers that they really aren't that sweet, much to Frank's confusion. The Emperor then proceeds to explain to Frank and Jessie his plan on how to conquer Bumblyburg, explaining that he managed to acquire a special formula, this formula that he calls the Envy Formula. Jesse comments that he wishes that he had an Envy Formula while Frank comments that he wishes for Jesse to be quiet, before the Emperor further explains that anyone who drinks the formula will be filled with envy, saying that everyone knows that envy makes people weak, but with the formula that he has, they will become super weak, planning to see to it that everyone in Bumblyburg gets a taste. Jesse thinks it's nice of the Emperor to share what he has, while Frank is confused that drinking the formula makes a person jealous and that they get super weak when they're jealous, which the Emperor confirms, saying that the more envious they are, the weaker they become and that they will feel tired and sluggish, hardly being able to move and only able to lie down and rest. Jesse admits that he's tired himself, Frank asking him if he took a nap this afternoon, Jesse answering that he did but only a little one.

The Emperor then asks if they can get back to the point, before asking if they are any other questions. Jesse then asks the Emperor if he's really a tomato, which the Emperor angrily confirms, before Jesse asks him if he's too small to be a tomato, angering the Emperor, who says that he explained it a million times that he's a cherry tomato and that they're supposed to be small. Jesse then asks the Emperor if that makes him more of a fruit than a vegetable, before Frank adds that "from a strictly scientific standpoint", tomatoes are fruits, not vegetables, which Jesse is amazed to hear because he didn't know that. The Emperor then demands for Frank and Jesse to be quiet before asking if there are any more questions about the formula. Frank is able to ask a sensible question, asking how the formula is supposed to help them take over Bumblyburg. The Emperor answers that once everyone has taken the formula, they will become envious and when they become envious, they will become weak, and that they will have no strength left to fight them when they take over Bumblyburg. After making this explanation, the Emperor lets out an evil laugh, Frank and Jesse also laughing with him, though Jesse later admits that he didn't really get the joke.

The next day at the Daily Bumble, Bob tells Vicki that he's fuming mad, while Junior listens in. Vicki asks Bob what he's mad about, Bob explaining that Mr. Slushee is having a Slushy-Slurping Contest and that they're giving out free slushies to the whole town. Vicki comments that it sounds good to her, then asks Bob what his beef is, before Bob answers that he doesn't have an available reporter to cover the story so he'll have to go himself then wishes that he had a reporter available. Vicki doesn't think that that's so bad because she'll be there to take the photographs, before Bob complains that he doesn't like slushies, but Vicki asks him what's not to like about slushies, Bob answering that he gets brain freeze headaches. Junior offers to report on the contest, and while Bob compliments Junior for being the cub reporter covering stories at Veggie Valley Grade School, he tells him that he's just a kid and that he can't cover important stories like the Mr. Slushee Slurping Contest. Bob then asks Junior what he's doing at the Bumble, Junior answering that he's turning in his front-page story on LarryBoy's capture of the Milk Money Bandit. A loud beep is suddenly heard after that, revealing that the beeping sound is made by Larry's mop while he is mopping the floor, Bob telling him that he didn't notice him there. Junior lets Larry know that his mop is beeping, so Larry says that it's time to mop the closet before he rushes off to the closet to take the call.

Archibald asks Larry how his job at the newspaper is, Larry telling Archibald that he's glad that he brought that up saying that he doesn't understand why he has to be a janitor because he is a world-famous superhero. Archibald explains to Larry that by working at the newspaper, he can learn about criminal activity the moment it is reported. Larry then asks Archibald if he could just watch BNN (Bumblyburg News Network), but Archibald dissuades this because Larry would just sit around the house all day, telling Larry that being at the Bumble is much better, though Larry thinks that Archibald is trying to get him out of the house. Archibald decides to change the subject after that, having important information for Larry, which Larry also has, explaining that he learned that they're giving away free slushies at Mr. Slushee. Archibald isn't really interested in hearing about that, before Larry asks him what his important information is. Archibald answers that he wanted to warn Larry that his archenemy Emperor Napoleon of Crime and Other Bad Stuff has been spotted near Bumblyburg, which Larry realizes is important news then asks Archibald how he heard about that, before Archibald nervously answers that he saw it on BNN. Regardless, Larry decides to make plans to deal with the Emperor, then asks Archibald if he knows what helps a cucumber make good plans, which is free slushies. After talking with Archibald, Larry leaves the closet and passes by Junior and Vicki, who marvel that it sounded like that Larry was mumbling to himself in the closet.

The entire town has come to Mr. Slushee for their free slushies, at the same time that Chief Croswell blocks the doorway, telling everyone that Mr. Slushee doesn't open for business for another ten minutes, and until that time, they can't let anyone in, much to the crowd's disappointment. The Emperor and his henchmen hide in the alley next to Mr. Slushee, while Frank notes that with Chief Croswell blocking the door, they can't get into the shop so they can pour the Envy Formula into the slushie machine, while Jesse congratulates Frank for bringing the reader up to speed, much to Frank's confusion. The Emperor boasts that he can get past Chief Croswell and tells Frank and Jesse to stand next to the door. Frank points out that the door is locked, the Emperor saying that he knows that and that he will unlock it from the inside. Jesse then asks the Emperor how he'll get past Chief Croswell, the Emperor answering that he will use his superpower, which Frank and Jesse are amazed to hear, before Jesse asks the Emperor what superpower he has. The Emperor is frustrated, asking Jesse if he was paying attention in Super Villain School, explaining that all super villains are either mad geniuses or have superpowers. Frank then asks what kind of powers, before the Emperor further explains a list of superpowers such as Super Strength, Super Speed, or the ability to fly. When asked what his superpower is, the Emperor answers that when he holds his breath, he becomes very, very small, though Jesse points out to the Emperor that he already is very, very small, which causes the Emperor to yell back that he becomes even smaller. The Emperor demonstrates his power to Frank and Jesse, holding his breath, which causes him to shrink, which Frank and Jesse are amazed to see.

After this demonstration, the Emperor explains that when he's tiny, he can slip right past Chief Croswell without being seen, though Jesse lets the Emperor know that he usually slips by people without being seen, but this only angers the Emperor before he orders for Frank and Jesse to stand by the back door and wait for him. The Emperor then uses his power and is able to slip right past Chief Croswell while he is tiny and gets through underneath the door. The Emperor goes back to full size once again before opening the back door, allowing Frank and Jesse in, before asking Frank and Jesse to pour the Envy Formula into the slushie machine, saying that when everyone eats their free slushies, they'll be infected with the Envy Formula. Jesse asks the Emperor to dump it in himself, but the Emperor answers that he's not tall enough to reach the opening and that it's why he needs their help to do it. Jesse asks the Emperor to go back to full size, but the Emperor barks that he is full size, which causes Jesse to quip that he should stop talking now, which the Emperor says is a great idea. Frank pours the Envy Formula into the slushie machine, while the Emperor compliments him for his good work, before suggesting that they sneak out the back so that no one will suspect a thing, then all they will need to do is wait until everyone has slurped a slushie, and at that moment, they can march on Bumblyburg. Jesse then asks the Emperor if they can stop by his house first, saying that if they're going to be marching, he wants to be wearing comfortable shoes, but the Emperor just tells him and Frank to go, which they do, laughing maniacally all the way.

Chief Croswell opens the shop's doors, as everyone in Bumblyburg stampedes into the shop, getting ready for the contest while slushies are poured one after the other. Vicki tells Bob that he was right about this being a big story, while Bob says that he can't believe all these people, and when Vicki asks him why, Bob answers that you'd have to be very silly to get this excited about a slushie contest. Vicki then points out Larry, while Bob says that his point is proven. Larry and Junior are sitting together, while Junior says that this is exciting because it looks like the whole town is here, and that he bets he could write a great story about the contest even if some people think that he's not grown-up enough to be a real reporter, while also saying that his dad says that God made him special just the way he is, and that he'll be grown-up when he's good and ready, but wants to be a grown up right now, at the same time that Larry is excited about getting free slushies. Chief Croswell manages to get everyone's attention, before welcoming them to Mr. Slushee's Slushie Slurping Contest, explaining that he has been asking to officiate the event. Larry asks what "officiate" means, before Junior explains to him that it means to judge, while Larry says "Poor fish". Chief Croswell further explains that everyone that wants to compete must sit at the counter. A lot of the citizens sit at the counter, while Vicki encourages Bob to compete, which Bob is reluctant to do after Vicki tells him that it's a first-hand angle for the story, Bob complaining again that he always gets a brain freeze. Vicki tells him that "A little slushie isn't going to hurt you", and that if he ate it slowly enough, he won't get a headache. Bob is incredulous about eating slowly in a slushie contest, before Vicki pushes him up to the counter.

Chief Croswell then announces that when he says 'go', the contestants are to grab a slushie cup and start slurping and that when they finish a cup, for them to take another, then says that when the alarm clock beeps, the contest will be over, then asks if there are any questions. Bob asks where the straws are, but this only causes everyone in the shop to start laughing, before Chief Croswell explains that there are no straws in a Mr. Slushee Slushie Slurping Contest, telling Bob to just stick his face into the slushie and slurp. Bob asks if that's a little messy, but Chief Croswell doesn't listen as he tells the contestants to get ready, before Bob also asks if he could at least get a spoon. Bob then says that this is so embarrassing, just as Chief Croswell tells all of the contestants to slurp, as all of the contestants start to slurp their slushies, which Bob does rather reluctantly. Chief Croswell then offers free slushies to everyone in the shop, before he starts giving slushies to all of the contestants. After ten minutes have passed, the alarm clock goes off, which causes Larry to dizzily say "Hello, Archie", after finishing his slushies. Chief Croswell then calls time on the contest, before going to inspect how many slushies each contestant has had, counting five slushies for Larry, three slushies for Junior, six for Officers Boysen and Blue, only one slushie for Bob (Bob complaining that he still got a headache), sixteen for Herbert, before Chief Croswell counts seventeen for Wally. Because of this, Wally wins the contest, before Chief Croswell gives him a trophy while congratulating him for winning the contest.

However, Herbert then wishes that he had a big trophy like Wally, which Officers Boysen and Blue agree with. Bob says that what would make him happier is if he had a lot of reporters on his staff, like all of the Big Town papers, which causes Vicki to wonder where that came from. Bob claims that he doesn't know and that it just came out, before Vicki says that she would happier if she had a brand new digital camera, just like the big shot photographers. Everyone in the shop then starts talking at once about things that they wish they had, Laura wishing for a pony, Lenny wishing for Harry's new LarryBoy action figure, Junior wishing that he was grown up, etc., before the door bursts open, catching everyone's attention, but when they look and see who opened the door, they don't see anything. However, a voice then calls out to them that he's "down here", before it is revealed that the Emperor Napoleon of Crime and Other Bad Stuff is standing before them, as the Emperor announces that he's come to take over Bumblyburg. This only prompts everyone to start laughing at the Emperor, before Chief Croswell asks him "You and what army?" The Emperor then allows Frank and Jesse to enter through the door after that, while Bob thinks that the notion of two sweet potatoes as the Emperor's army is ridiculous, while everyone laughs once again.

Chief Croswell then orders Officers Boysen and Blue to take the Emperor and his henchmen into custody, but Officer Blue says that he wishes that he had an army like the Emperor, which Officer Boysen agrees with, before Chief Croswell snaps at the Berry brothers. Because of that, Officer Blue pronounces the Emperor and his henchmen under arrest, but ends up falling to the floor when he takes a step forward, just as Officer Boysen also falls after him. Junior asks what's wrong with the Berry brothers,while Officer Boysen doesn't know either, while Officer Blue says that he doesn't feel very good, while Herbert agrees that he doesn't feel very good either, before Wally asks if it's from slurping too many slushies, but Herbert replies that you can never have too many slushies. The Emperor then gloats to everyone that they are all too weak to stand up to him, saying that they laugh at his height and his army, before saying, "Who's laughing now?" Jesse answers, "You are, boss", before the Emperor tells him that he knows he is. The Emperor then tells everyone that to make sure that no one interferes, his troops will tuck them all safely away in jail then Bumblyburg will be his, and while everyone sits in jail wishing for things they can't have, he'll make all his wishes come true. Chief Croswell then asks the Emperor if he's forgetting about LarryBoy, saying that when he hears about this, the Emperor will be sorry. Larry then starts thinking, wishing that he was LarryBoy, before remembering that he is that hero, before sneaking out the back door.

LarryBoy then comes in and tells the Emperor to stop, which causes the Emperor and his henchmen to freeze in fear. Jesse asks what they do now, while Frank says that LarryBoy doesn't look weak, wondering if he didn't have any slushies. At first, the Emperor is worried, but then he smiles before telling Frank and Jesse to look at LarryBoy's face, while LarryBoy has slushie stains all over his mouth. The Emperor tells LarryBoy that he got him, then tells LarryBoy that before he takes him in, to ask him a question, which LarryBoy allows him to do. The Emperor then asks LarryBoy if there's anything that someone else has that he wishes he had, like a toy or a car or a special skill, while Frank also suggests a cat, before Jesse also suggests an octopus, which Frank is in disbelief about, to which Jesse pipes in that he likes octopuses, before Frank corrects him that it's 'octopi', but this only prompts Jesse to say "No thanks", saying that he doesn't like pie but he wishes that he had a piece of cake. The Emperor then snaps at Frank and Jesse for attention before asking LarryBoy if he can think of anything. LarryBoy answers that he would like to have a shield like American Pie, thinking it to be nifty, round and sturdy, and could fly. Vicki reminds LarryBoy that he was in the middle of doing something important, which brings LarryBoy to attention before he tells the villains that it's time to go. The Emperor says that he changed his mind and for LarryBoy to take them by force, which LarryBoy accepts, but when he steps forward and fires his Super Suction Ear, it doesn't fly very far and just falls in front of LarryBoy, before he quips that he feels funny and that he's too weak to shoot his ears right, while the Emperor just laughs at this.

The Emperor and his henchmen escort everyone in Bumblyburg into jail, while Officers Boysen and Blue whine that they want something to drink, before Frank points out to them that there's 99 bottles of slushie on the wall, while Jesse also adds to take one down and pass it around. Frank says "99 bottles of slushie on the wall", before Jesse quips that that would make a great song. Wally yells at Frank and Jesse to tell Herbert to give him his cot because it's softer than his, while Herbert says that he's too tired to switch cots and that he wants Wally's cot because it's firmer than his. Frank says that he hopes that the Envy Formula wears off soon, saying that Herbert and Wally are driving him crazy. In another cell, Bob, Junior, and LarryBoy are sharing a cell, while Junior says that he feels super-weak, which Bob agrees with while saying that his head hurts. LarryBoy says that he feels weak, his head hurts, and that there's a ringing in his ears, before Bob points out to LarryBoy that his ears are ringing. Once LarryBoy realizes that his ears really are ringing, he answers the radio in his ears, calling for Archibald, while Archibald greets LarryBoy. But because Bob and Junior can't hear Archibald, they look at LarryBoy rather confusingly. LarryBoy tells Archibald that he's glad to hear his voice because he's in jail, before Archibald tells him that he told him to slow down when driving through town, but LarryBoy tells him that it's not that, but rather Emperor Napoleon of Crime and Other Bad Stuff. Bob asks LarryBoy why he's telling him and Junior that, but LarryBoy tells them that he's not talking to them, though Archibald misunderstands, thinking that LarryBoy was telling him this, before LarryBoy tells him that he is talking to him and that he's not talking to Bob. Junior then asks LarryBoy if he's talking to him, but LarryBoy also tells him that he's talking to Archibald.

Because Bob and Junior can't see Archibald, Bob thinks that Archibald is invisible while Junior wishes that he had an invisible friend. LarryBoy explains to Bob and Junior that Archibald isn't invisible, but they just can't see him, before Junior wishes that he had a friend who wasn't invisible but you still can't see him. Archibald tells LarryBoy to never mind explaining and for him to tell him what happened, to which LarryBoy explains to Archibald about the Mr. Slushee Slushie Slurping Contest, the Emperor's entrance, Officers Boysen and Blue becoming ill, and his own brief battle with the villain, which is how they ended up in jail. LarryBoy then says that it's unbelievable and that he's too weak to escape, before wishing that he was back home like Archibald. Archibald tells LarryBoy to keep his courage up and that he will go down to Mr. Slushee and investigate and that he can find out what is making so many people lost their strength, which LarryBoy says is a good idea, before telling him that while he does that, he's going to lie down on his cot and dream that he has a mattress that wasn't lumpy, which LarryBoy proceeds to do after ending his call with Archibald.

In Bumblyburg, the Emperor has Frank and Jesse use a large vice to make every building in the city smaller so that it is just his size. Jesse tells the reader that it was really hard work, which Frank is confused about, before Jesse tells him that he wasn't talking to him, but to the reader. The Emperor tells his henchmen that they have a lot more scrunching to do, which Frank and Jesse do, before Jesse asks Frank how they will be able to stand up in the buildings once they've been scrunched down, but Frank tells him to be quiet or else the Emperor will decide to scrunch them down too. After Frank and Jesse leave, Archibald sneaks into the scrunched-down Mr. Slushee after wriggling through the door. Back at jail, LarryBoy's ears start ringing again, causing LarryBoy to wake up, asking if he's late for work again, before Bob tells him that it's his ears that are ringing again. LarryBoy then remembers that it's his radio hidden in his Super Suction Ears, before Bob wishes that he had a radio, while Junior wishes that he had Super Suction Ears, before LarryBoy wishes that he had a radio and Super Suction Ears, until Bob reminds him that he does and that they're still ringing. Because of this, LarryBoy takes the call, Archibald explaining to him that he found something interesting and that he took a sample from the slushie machine. LarryBoy wishes that he had a slushie, then asks Archibald if it tasted good, but Archibald tells him that he didn't eat it, further explaining that he took it to the lab and ran some tests, then says that the slushies were tainted with an envy formula. LarryBoy is surprised when he hears this, before Bob asks him what Archibald is saying, LarryBoy explaining to Bob and Junior what Archibald told him about the envy formula tainting the slushies, before recalling someone talking about envy recently, but can't remember where.

Archibald asks LarryBoy if it was someone at Mr. Slushee, before Junior suggests that it was someone he passed on the street, while Bob suggests that it was a used car salesman, but LarryBoy shoots down each of those possibilities. Junior then tells LarryBoy that at the Veggie Valley Elementary School, their teacher once taught them about envy, which causes LarryBoy to remember that he learned about envy at school, which causes Junior to think that LarryBoy goes to the Veggie Valley Elementary School too. LarryBoy corrects him, saying that in his night class, Professor Bok Choy talked about envy and that envy rots the bones. Junior then admits that there did seem to be a lot of jealousy at Mr. Slushee and that after everyone became envious, they all started to feel weak, realizing that envy caused their weakness, before Bob then wishes that he thought of that. Archibald realizes that that's what the problem is and that God doesn't want us to be envious of others, which was why LarryBoy couldn't fight the Emperor. LarryBoy asks what he has to do, before Archibald explains to him that to counteract the formula, he must stop being envious then his strength will return, before LarryBoy boasts that he can do that, then he'll take care of the Emperor and his cronies, but starts to wonder how to get out of the cell. Junior wishes that he had the keys to the cell, before LarryBoy realizes that he can get the keys, before Bob asks him to use his Super Suction Ears, LarryBoy complaining that they're all the way across the room and that he doesn't know if he has the strength to shoot his Super Suction Ears that far. Archibald tells LarryBoy to simply stop being envious and that he should have enough power to reach the keys, which LarryBoy agrees with, saying that he is the happiest cucumber alive and that he is happy with everything he has. LarryBoy is about to continue saying what he is happy for when Archibald tells him that he has a job to do.

LarryBoy sticks an ear between the bars of the jail cell before firing his Super Suction Ear at the keys, reeling in his ear with the keys still attached, but when he turns to face his friends, his ear jams between the bars, causing the keys to fall to the floor. Fortunately, Bob and Junior help LarryBoy pull his Super Suction Ear back through the bars before getting the keys, before LarryBoy unlocks the door, saying that he is off to the see the Emperor, asking who is with him. Bob wishes that he had LarryBoy's energy, but helping him with the keys has zapped every bit he had and that he's still too weak to leave, which Junior agrees with. Archibald tells LarryBoy that he'll have to go alone, while reminding him not to be envious. Back in Bumblyburg, the Emperor now has Frank and Jesse work the vice to lower the doorway to the Bumblyburg Bank, when LarryBoy shows up, telling them to halt. The Emperor gives off a chuckle, asking his henchmen to guess who escaped from his cell, before Jesse excitedly says that he loves riddles, asking if it was Officers Boysen and Blue, but the Emperor angrily tells him no. LarryBoy asks Frank and Jesse if they really likes riddles, because he has a riddle for them, which is "What's purple, white, and red", but the Emperor angrily tells his henchmen that it's LarryBoy, while Jesse says that he thought that it might be a trick question, while Frank adds that he wanted to hear the end of the riddle. The Emperor then orders for Frank and Jesse to attack as they head out at LarryBoy. Archibald calls LarryBoy, asking him if he can hear him, which LarryBoy does loud and clear, before Archibald tells him that now is a good time for him to test out the new weapon installed into his Super Suction Ear, which LarryBoy recognizes as the Maypole Ear, saying that it's not May, but October, though Archibald tells him that it's alright and for him to use it anyway. Jesse asks Frank who LarryBoy is talking to, though Frank doesn't know, before telling Jesse to watch out because LarryBoy is getting ready to launch a plunger.

LarryBoy shoots his left Super Suction Ear at Frank and Jesse before it lands on the ground in front of them, which causes Frank to gloat that LarryBoy missed, though LarryBoy says, "Maybe, maybe not". Jesse then worriedly tells Frank that the plunger is making noise, just as a tall pole rises up from the center of the plunger, which Frank asks about. A small pop is heard from the top of the pole before two small plungers drop down and land on the heads of Frank and Jesse, though Frank says that he doesn't like the sound of this, while Jesse says that he's flying, just as the small plungers reel Frank and Jesse to the top of the pole, before Frank and Jesse call out for help because they're stuck, while LarryBoy says that it works like a charm, which Archibald thanks him about. LarryBoy then prepares to take on the Emperor, before the Emperor stops him, wanting to ask LarryBoy something, but LarryBoy is not falling for it. The Emperor asks LarryBoy about the shield that American Pie has and if he would like that, but LarryBoy pretends to not listen to the Emperor. However, when the Emperor also asks him that other superheroes can fly and if he wishes he could fly, LarryBoy finally listens to the Emperor, who continues that superheroes have other wonderful toys, remembering the Norse superhero with the magic hammer and asks LarryBoy if he would like to have a hammer like him. LarryBoy then quips that if he had a hammer, he could hammer in the morning, and that would be cool, asking why he can't have a hammer like that other superhero. Because of that, LarryBoy suddenly starts to feel weaker again, which causes him to realize that he doesn't know how to stay un-envious.

Back in prison, Junior sits on his bunk in a bad mood, before Bob asks him what's on his mind. Junior answers that no matter how hard he tries not to envy grown-ups, he doesn't feel any stronger, thinking that he just can't do it. Bob then asks Junior why he would want to envy grown-ups, Junior answering that grown-ups get to do all kinds of things that he can't, like be real reporters, stay up late, and eat nothing but macaroni and cheese for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Even in spite of this, Bob reasons with Junior that he gets to do a lot of really cool things to, telling him that he gets to be cub reporter, even if he doesn't let him cover every story, then asks him how many of the other kids he knows get to have their stories published at all, which Junior confirms as being true. Bob also adds to Junior that he gets to play at recess, and that he hasn't had recess since he was Junior's age, which Junior is surprised to hear, admitting that he does like recess. Bob further adds to Junior that he gets to go to the movies for half-price, and that he can't go in for half-price, while Junior says that his grandpa goes to the movies for half-price and that it won't be long before Bob does too. Bob tells Junior that he's not as old as his grandpa, which junior is surprised to hear, before Bob decides to change the subject, making his point that Junior can go to movies for half-price, which causes Junior to realize that being a kid isn't so bad. Bob then further adds that being Junior Asparagus isn't so bad, which causes Junior to realize that he likes being himself, saying that he learned that "Little guys can do big things too", realizing that he was forgetting all about that, before realizing that he's feeling stronger and that he doesn't feel sick at all. Bob says that it's because Junior did more than stop being jealous and that he was also content with what he has and who he is, which causes Junior to realize that the only way to really stop envy is by being content, saying that "a content heart is a healthy heart", which Bob agrees with, saying that he'll print that in his paper any day. Junior then says that he has to go, saying that LarryBoy doesn't know how to stop envy.

Back in Bumblyburg, Archibald calls LarryBoy, asking him what that strange sound is that he's hearing, saying that it's sort of a scrunching and crunching sound. LarryBoy answers that it would be his head, which Archibald is surprised to hear, but LarryBoy tells him that he's a little busy, before it is revealed that LarryBoy has been tied up and now standing in the middle of the vice, with the clamp squeezing down on his head. The Emperor then gloats to LarryBoy that now he will know what it feels like to be short. LarryBoy asks the Emperor if that is what it's all about, his wish to be tall, before asking the Emperor if he would like to be stretched instead. The Emperor denies this suggestion, before LarryBoy tells him that he really should consider it, but he would look more like a bell pepper, but the Emperor is always grouchy so a pepper would suit him, once again asking the Emperor to consider it. Junior then runs up to the vice that LarryBoy is stuck under, calling out for him, while telling him that it isn't enough to not be envious. Jesse states that Junior learned that three chapters ago. LarryBoy tells Frank and Jesse to hold it down for a second because he's trying to hear Junior, which Frank and Jesse apologize to. Junior explains to LarryBoy that God made each of us special and that God wants us to be happy with who we are and what we have, which is how you defeat envy, by being content. Larry claims that he can do that, if he only knew what content means, before Junior answers that it means being happy with what you have rather than wishing for things that others have. Jesse points out that Junior has a good point, but the Emperor yells at him and Frank to stop Junior, saying that he'll ruin everything. The Emperor and his henchmen run out at Junior as he runs off while yelling for help, leaving LarryBoy alone with his thoughts.

LarryBoy thinks about Junior told him about being content and being happy with what he has. LarryBoy then says that it's true that he doesn't have a cool shield, but he does have other nifty things, like Super Suction Ears, and he has Archibald, who makes him cool stuff, and that he gets to live in Bumblyburg with some of the nicest vegetables that he gets to call friends, realizing that it is good to be LarryBoy. This time, LarryBoy is able to break free of the ropes that he was tied up in, once he has gotten rid of his envy, and also causing the vice to break in half, proclaiming himself to be that hero. Down the street, Junior finds himself surrounded by the Emperor and Frank and Jesse, while the Emperor taunts Junior, thinking that a kid like himself is going to outwit the Emperor. Junior defiantly says that he's not so little and that he's taller than the Emperor, Jesse realizing that Junior has a point, but the Emperor shouts at Jesse to be quiet, before telling Frank and Jesse to grab Junior so that they can go back to squishing LarryBoy. LarryBoy then asks if somebody mentioned his name before making himself known to the Emperor and his henchmen, which surprises Frank into asking LarryBoy how he escaped from the vice. The Emperor tells him to never mind that before saying that it won't take much to make LarryBoy weak again. The Emperor asks LarryBoy if he would like to have a nice shield, which LarryBoy agrees with, but this time, he admits that he's pretty happy with the stuff that he does have, like his Super Suction Ears. Undaunted, the Emperor tells LarryBoy that other heroes can fly, asking LarryBoy if he would like to fly. LarryBoy admits that it would be fun, but further admits that he can already fly with his Larry-Plane and that he's okay with not being able to fly, which the Emperor is frustrated about when he sees that LarryBoy is not being envious again, while Junior is happy that LarryBoy defeated envy, while LarryBoy tells Junior that it's because of him.

Of course, the Emperor tells LarryBoy that he hasn't defeated him yet, so because of that, tells Frank and Jesse to attack, while Jesse whines that LarryBoy isn't weak anymore, but Frank tells him that he has an idea, which turns out to be that they run. Frank and Jesse run down the street, while LarryBoy aims a Super Suction Ear towards them and shoots an ear past Frank and Jesse before the ear lands on a billboard advertising Mr. Slushee. Frank laughs that LarryBoy missed, though Jesse speculates that the last time they thought LarryBoy missed, he didn't really miss, before Frank asks Jesse what he's trying to say, Jesse answering fearfully that they look out, just as LarryBoy pulls on the billboard with his Super Suction Ear, pulling the billboard right toward the two henchmen, before they end up colliding with the billboard, defeating them. Once Frank and Jesse have been defeated, LarryBoy goes to confront the Emperor, who says that he still has an ace up his sleeve, though LarryBoy tells him that he doesn't have sleeves, before the Emperor tells him that it's just an expression. The Emperor then holds his breath, causing him to shrink down once again, while Junior cries out that the Emperor will get away. Fortunately, LarryBoy tells Junior not to worry, because Archibald knew that the Emperor would try to use his super-shrinking power to escape, reasoning that that's why he packed a brand new invention. The invention is a handheld Larry-Vacuum which LarryBoy takes out from his utility belt, before turning on the vacuum as it starts sucking dust and debris into its bag.

LarryBoy turns off the vacuum after a minute, while Junior asks him now what, before LarryBoy answers that they wait until the Emperor can't hold his breath anymore. Seconds later, the Emperor returns to his full size from inside the vacuum bag, as LarryBoy says that they caught the Emperor after all, while Junior thanks LarryBoy for saving the day, but LarryBoy thanks Junior for showing him how to defeat envy. Afterwards, LarryBoy's Super Suction Ears start ringing again, so LarryBoy answers the radio, Archibald asking him if he's okay, LarryBoy answering that thanks to him and Junior, he's fine. When Archibald asks about the Emperor, LarryBoy tells him not to worry because he "got that one in the bag". Later, once the Emperor and his henchmen have been defeated, a giant car jack is now being used to return all of the buildings to their regular height again. Chief Croswell, LarryBoy, and Junior are watching this, before Chief Croswell says that soon all of the buildings will be back to their normal sizes, also adding that all of the Bumblyburg citizens have been examined by the doctor and that all traces of the envy formula are gone. LarryBoy quips that this is good news, before Junior says that they sure learned a good lesson today, which LarryBoy agrees with, but he misinterprets it as "Don't mess with LarryBoy". Junior tells him that he was thinking of a different lesson, which LarryBoy also misinterprets as "Free slushies aren't all they're cracked up to be". Junior tells LarryBoy that that's not it either, before LarryBoy also misinterprets the lesson as "Don't throw a shield in a classroom", but even if Junior says that it's good advice, it's also not what he was thinking, then asks what the big thing is that they learned in their adventure.

LarryBoy once again misinterprets that it's "The prison cots are lumpy", but this time, Junior is able to remind LarryBoy that he was thinking more along the lines of being content with what we have, which LarryBoy quickly agrees with. LarryBoy then leaves as he gets into the Larrymobile and drives down the street as Chief Croswell and Junior wave at him. LarryBoy comes to a stop at the traffic light in time to see a hot rod painted with yellow and red flames pull up alongside him. The light then changes as the hot rod takes off, while LarryBoy quips that it would be nice to have a car like that, before remembering that the car he has isn't too bad. After LarryBoy laughs to himself about it, he pushes a button on the Larrymobile's dashboard, turning the Larrymobile into the Larry-Plane before zooming off into the sky.

Other Languages[]

  • LarryBoy y el Emperador Envidioso (Latin Spanish)

Fun Facts[]


  • This book contains a lot of fourth wall jokes.

Inside References[]

Real-Life References[]

  • American Pie is an obvious parody of Captain America, complete with his red, white, and blue-colored outfit.
  • Frank and Jesse appear to be obvious references to Horace and Jasper from Disney's "One Hundred and One Dalmatians."
  • BNN (Bumblyburg News Network) is a parody of CNN (Cable News Network).
  • The Norse superhero that the Emperor is referring to could very well be Thor.