Jestus, aka Professor Bagus Bagliochus Bagdenborg is a colourful personality; he is a composite of a hundred facets. He changes his behaviour (and his names) at the drop of a hat, rather at the turn of each page. He is simply unbeatable, either in a physical confrontation or in an argument. His main weapon is ‘fentologic’, which, he claims, is what is created when logic is ground to the finest, fento dimensions – the way matter displays new characteristics when it is ground to nanoparticles. The power of his fentology is to be seen and tasted to be believed, especially when spiced up with the professor’s unique brand of outlandish humour. Two sagas from his innumerable escapades are presented in this humour-laden novel.
Saga I, Chapters 1 through 8
Professor Bagdenborg arrives at the NG University on horseback, with the grand vision of “Emancipation of Science”. He proceeds to do it with zeal and zest, to the great discomfiture of his colleagues and the administrative staffs, some of whom naturally become his enemies. The students, on the other hand become his fans – which aggravates his colleagues even more. Bagus/ (Jestus/Bagdenborg/Bagliostro/Baglighetti etc) blithely romps along the university generating hilarious, unbelievable phenomena. Samples of his unique talent:-
He converts his horse into a car. (“It is a ‘convertible’, you see,” he explains to his bewildered colleague.) He plays chess by dowsing over the chessboard! (Simple, if you know fentology.) Throw dimes in the air, and they always land heads up. Fentologic reveals that it is due the special effect of the ‘Fortnight of the Waxing Moon’. A computer, programmed to generate random numbers keeps on spewing highly ordered sequence of numbers, stubbornly refusing to obey the commands of the operators. Know how to cross the zebra-lines across a road? Bagdenborg shows how to do it properly – he rides on a zebra (yeah, the animal) across the zebra line! While playing billiards, Bagdenborg uses the cue as a sword; it will pierce through the ball and the tabletop. One of his enemies discovers to his horror that the table-tennis ball can actually turn into an egg, and splash all over him. And so on and so on, many weird things happen whenever Professor Bagdenborg is around. All due to the courtesy of his ‘fentology’.
He bamboozles his students (“his dear children”) with his lectures on how to emancipate Science. The students follow him whole-heartedly. Given the choice to listen to academic lectures on science or to follow “fentology”, the students bunk classes. They start playing ‘fento’ games outside, in the open fields.
That is the last straw for the Administrative Office. They decide to pack off the erratic professor. Then they discover that their office computer has lost all data on him. In its place, they find a guy named, Jestus. Finally, the authorities manage to shunt out the maverick professor.
Not yet. Because, in a last ditch effort to teach fentology to his students (“my dear children”) Bagdenborg returns to the campus as a gorilla! The gorilla-cum-professor pleads with the management to accept him back; he wants to teach his dear students, who love him so much. Gorilla’s offer is rejected; he goes back dejected.
Saga II Chapters 1 through 3
The Society of Rationalists hates Jestus/Bagdenborg because he is propagating ‘fentologic’ which stands for everything opposite to its ideology. They dub fentologic as a virus; they call him The Menace. They set about confronting him.
They send Zee Von, their best operator to tackle Jestus. Alas, Jestus gives him a treatment of panchakarma of Indian fame. Zee Von is converted to fentology. He throws a paper arrow back at his old fellow-members!
Chapters 4, 5 and 6:- Next, the president of the Society sends Wagermann to the enemy territory. Wagermann, being clever, sets a honey-trap for Jestus/Bagdenborg, the famous apsara, oh, we mean Op Sarah. Jestus swallows the bait hook, line and sinker. The only problem is that he digests it. Op Sarah too becomes a convert.
Chapters 7,8,9 :- Next in line to tackle Jestus is villain (sorry dear villain; it is Will Laigne) who hires the hulk, Battering Ram to beat Jestus into pulp. Ferocious Bat discovers that Jestus was his elder brother in one incarnation. He has a complete change of heart. He returns and socks Will Laigne, his handler on the jaw. The mission is bust – just like Will’s jaw. The rationalists dubbed fentology as a virus. Tue; the punch that Will Laigne received, incubates like a virus and spreads into the midst of the Rationalists. They start fighting among themselves, as if possessed. Rock Van, the most intelligent and loyal member of the Rationalist Society knocks down all the members; does not spare even the venerable old president. The members quit the Society, except for the last loyal member, Emmar Rod.A.
Chapters 10,11,12 :- Undeterred, President Norse Simmon, followed by Emmar Rod, meets Jestus at his den for the final confrontation. Jestus/Bagdenborg, through ‘fentology’ claims that the Rationalist themselves are just a figment of his imagination. More than that – he swears that they are only a product of his dream! Norse Simmon challenges him. Jestus proceeds to take out a ludicrous piece of laptop made out of cardboard! In that cardboard, he goes on to create a virtual world wherein the main building of the Rationalists (their war room, as they called it) is dismantled like a pack of cards. The broken pieces of the building fly away into the sky. Unfortunately, Emmar Rod who was witnessing the video gets emotionally involved, and enters into that virtual world. He too is swept away into outer space! Norse Simmon, the president alone is all that is left of the Rationalist Society. Yet, the indefatigable president taunts Jestus that he is still alive, and so, is real, not a fantasy created in the dream of Jestus. The answer Jestus gives is very subtle, and can only be revealed at the end of the saga. Jestus too dissolves himself inside the screen of the cardboard laptop!