Full text The Emerald City of Oz by L. Frank Baum
--Author's Note-- 1. How the Nome King Became Angry 2. How Uncle Henry Got Into Trouble 3. How Ozma Granted Dorothy's Request 4. How The Nome King Planned Revenge 5. How Dorothy Became a Princess 6. How Guph Visited the Whimsies 7. How Aunt Em Conquered the Lion 8. How the Grand Gallipoot Joined The Nomes 9. How the Wogglebug Taught Athletics 10. How the Cuttenclips Lived 11. How the General Met the First and Foremost 12. How they Matched the Fuddles 13. How the General Talked to the King 14. How the Wizard Practiced Sorcery 15. How Dorothy Happened to Get Lost 16. How Dorothy Visited Utensia 17. How They Came to Bunbury 18. How Ozma Looked into the Magic Picture 19. How Bunnybury Welcomed the Strangers 20. How Dorothy Lunched With a King 21. How the King Changed His Mind 22. How the Wizard Found Dorothy 23. How They Encountered the Flutterbudgets 24. How the Tin Woodman Told the Sad News 25. How the Scarecrow Displayed His Wisdom 26. How Ozma Refused to Fight for Her Kingdom 27. How the Fierce Warriors Invaded Oz 28. How They Drank at the Forbidden Fountain 29. How Glinda Worked a Magic Spell 30. How the Story of Oz Came to an End
Perhaps I should admit on the title page that this book is "By L.Frank Baum and his correspondents," for I have used many suggestionsconveyed to me in letters from children. Once on a time I reallyimagined myself "an author of fairy tales," but now I am merely aneditor or private secretary for a host of youngsters whose ideas I amrequestsed to weave into the thread of my stories.
These ideas are often clever. They are also logical and interesting.So I have used them whenever I could find an opportunity, and it is butjust that I acknowledge my indebtedness to my little friends.
My, what imaginations these children have developed! Sometimes I amfairly astounded by their daring and genius. There will be no lack offairy-tale authors in the future, I am sure. My readers have told mewhat to do with Dorothy, and Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, and I have obeyedtheir mandates. They have also given me a variety of subjects to writeabout in the future: enough, in fact, to keep me busy for some time. Iam very proud of this alliance. Children love these stories becausechildren have helped to create them. My readers know what they wantand realize that I try to please them. The result is very satisfactoryto the publishers, to me, and (I am quite sure) to the children.
I hope, my dears, it will be a long time before we are obliged todissolve partnership.
L. FRANK BAUM.
1. How the Nome King Became Angry
The Nome King was in an angry mood, and at such times he was verydisagreeable. Every one kept away from him, even his Chief StewardKaliko.
Therefore the King stormed and raved all by himself, walking up anddown in his jewel-studded cavern and getting angrier all the time.Then he remembered that it was no fun being angry unless he had someone to frighten and make miserable, and he rushed to his big gong andmade it clatter as loud as he could.
In came the Chief Steward, trying not to show the Nome King howfrightened he was.
"Send the Chief Counselor here!" shouted the angry monarch.
Kaliko ran out as fast as his spindle legs could carry his fat, roundbody, and soon the Chief Counselor entered the cavern. The Kingscowled and said to him:
"I'm in great trouble over the loss of my Magic Belt. Every littlewhile I want to do something magical, and find I can't because the Beltis gone. That makes me angry, and when I'm angry I can't have a goodtime. Now, what do you advise?"
"Some people," said the Chief Counselor, "enjoy getting angry."
"But not all the time," declared the King. "To be angry once in awhile is really good fun, because it makes others so miserable. But tobe angry morning, noon and night, as I am, grows monotonous andprevents my gaining any other pleasure in life. Now what do youadvise?"
"Why, if you are angry because you want to do magical things and can't,and if you don't want to get angry at all, my advice is not to want todo magical things."
Hearing this, the King glared at his Counselor with a furiousexpression and tugged at his own long white whiskers until he pulledthem so hard that he yelled with pain.
"You are a fool!" he exclaimed.
"I share that honor with your Majesty," said the Chief Counselor.
The King roared with rage and stamped his foot.
"Ho, there, my guards!" he cried. "Ho" is a royal way of saying, "Comehere." So, when the guards had hoed, the King said to them:
"Take this Chief Counselor and throw him away."
Then the guards took the Chief Counselor, and bound him with chains toprevent his struggling, and threw him away. And the King paced up anddown his cavern more angry than before.
Finally he rushed to his big gong and made it clatter like a firealarm. Kaliko appeared again, trembling and white with fear.
"Fetch my pipe!" yelled the King.
"Your pipe is already here, your Majesty," replied Kaliko.
"Then get my tobacco!" roared the King.
"The tobacco is in your pipe, your Majesty," returned the Steward.
"Then bring a live coal from the furnace!" commanded the King.
"The tobacco is lighted, and your Majesty is already smoking yourpipe," answered the Steward.
"Why, so I am!" said the King, who had forgotten this fact; "but youare very rude to remind me of it."
"I am a lowborn, miserable villain," declared the Chief Steward, humbly.
The Nome King could think of nothing to say next, so he puffed away athis pipe and paced up and down the room. Finally, he remembered howangry he was, and cried out:
"What do you mean, Kaliko, by being so contented when your monarch isunhappy?"
"What makes you unhappy?" asked the Steward.
"I've lost my Magic Belt. A little girl named Dorothy, who was herewith Ozma of Oz, stole my Belt and carried it away with her," said theKing, grinding his teeth with rage.
"She captured it in a fair fight," Kaliko ventured to say.
"But I want it! I must have it! Half my power is gone with thatBelt!" roared the King.
"You will have to go to the Land of Oz to recover it, and your Majestycan't get to the Land of Oz in any possible way," said the Steward,yawning because he had been on duty ninety-six hours, and was sleepy.
"Why not?" asked the King.
"Because there is a deadly desert all around that fairy country, whichno one is able to cross. You know that fact as well as I do, yourMajesty. Never mind the lost Belt. You have plenty of power left, foryou rule this underground kingdom like a tyrant, and thousands of Nomesobey your commands. I advise you to drink a glass of melted silver, toquiet your nerves, and then go to bed."
The King grabbed a big ruby and threw it at Kaliko's head. The Stewardducked to escape the heavy jewel, which crashed against the door justover his left ear.
"Get out of my sight! Vanish! Go away--and send General Blug here,"screamed the Nome King.
Kaliko hastily withdrew, and the Nome King stamped up and down untilthe General of his armies appeared.
This Nome was known far and wide as a terrible fighter and a cruel,desperate commander. He had fifty thousand Nome soldiers, all welldrilled, who feared nothing but their stern master. Yet General Blugwas a trifle uneasy when he arrived and saw how angry the Nome King was.
"Ha! So you're here!" cried the King.
"So I am," said the General.
"March your army at once to the Land of Oz, capture and destroy theEmerald City, and bring back to me my Magic Belt!" roared the King.
"You're crazy," calmly remarked the General.
"What's that? What's that? What's that?" And the Nome King dancedaround on his pointed toes, he was so enraged.
"You don't know what you're talking about," continued the General,seating himself upon a large cut diamond. "I advise you to stand in acorner and count sixty before you speak again. By that time you may bemore sensible."
The King looked around for something to throw at General Blug, but asnothing was handy he began to consider that perhaps the man was rightand he had been talking foolishly. So he merely threw himself into hisglittering throne and tipped his crown over his ear and curled his feetup under him and glared wickedly at Blug.
"In the first place," said the General, "we cannot march across thedeadly desert to the Land of Oz. And if we could, the Ruler of thatcountry, Princess Ozma, has certain fairy powers that would render myarmy helpless. Had you not lost your Magic Belt we might have somechance of defeating Ozma; but the Belt is gone."
"I want it!" screamed the King. "I must have it."
"Well, then, let us try in a sensible way to get it," replied theGeneral. "The Belt was captured by a little girl named Dorothy, wholives in Kansas, in the United States of America."
"But she left it in the Emerald City, with Ozma," declared the King.
"How do you know that?" asked the General.
"One of my spies, who is a Blackbird, flew over the desert to the Landof Oz, and saw the Magic Belt in Ozma's palace," replied the King witha groan.
"Now that gives me an idea," said General Blug, thoughtfully. "Thereare two ways to get to the Land of Oz without traveling across thesandy desert."
"What are they?" demanded the King, eagerly.
"One way is OVER the desert, through the air; and the other way isUNDER the desert, through the earth."
Hearing this the Nome King uttered a yell of joy and leaped from histhrone, to resume his wild walk up and down the cavern.
"That's it, Blug!" he shouted. "That's the idea, General! I'm King ofthe Under World, and my subjects are all miners. I'll make a secrettunnel under the desert to the Land of Oz--yes! right up to the EmeraldCity--and you will march your armies there and capture the wholecountry!"
"Softly, softly, your Majesty. Don't go too fast," warned the General."My Nomes are good fighters, but they are not strong enough to conquerthe Emerald City."
"Are you sure?" asked the King.
"Absolutely certain, your Majesty."
"Then what am I to do?"
"Give up the idea and mind your own business," advised the General."You have plenty to do trying to rule your underground kingdom."
"But I want the Magic Belt--and I'm going to have it!" roared the NomeKing.
"I'd like to see you get it," replied the General, laughing maliciously.
The King was by this time so exasperated that he picked up his scepter,which had a heavy ball, made from a sapphire, at the end of it, andthrew it with all his force at General Blug. The sapphire hit theGeneral upon his forehead and knocked him flat upon the ground, wherehe lay motionless. Then the King rang his gong and told his guards todrag out the General and throw him away; which they did.
This Nome King was named Roquat the Red, and no one loved him. He wasa bad man and a powerful monarch, and he had resolved to destroy theLand of Oz and its magnificent Emerald City, to enslave Princess Ozmaand little Dorothy and all the Oz people, and recover his Magic Belt.This same Belt had once enabled Roquat the Red to carry out many wickedplans; but that was before Ozma and her people marched to theunderground cavern and captured it. The Nome King could not forgiveDorothy or Princess Ozma, and he had determined to be revenged uponthem.
But they, for their part, did not know they had so dangerous an enemy.Indeed, Ozma and Dorothy had both almost forgotten that such a personas the Nome King yet lived under the mountains of the Land of Ev--whichlay just across the deadly desert to the south of the Land of Oz.
An unsuspected enemy is doubly dangerous.
2. How Uncle Henry Got Into Trouble
Dorothy Gale lived on a farm in Kansas, with her Aunt Em and her UncleHenry. It was not a big farm, nor a very good one, because sometimesthe rain did not come when the crops needed it, and then everythingwithered and dried up. Once a cyclone had carried away Uncle Henry'shouse, so that he was obliged to build another; and as he was a poorman he had to mortgage his farm to get the money to pay for the newhouse. Then his health became bad and he was too feeble to work. Thedoctor ordered him to take a sea voyage and he went to Australia andtook Dorothy with him. That cost a lot of money, too.
Uncle Henry grew poorer every year, and the crops raised on the farmonly bought food for the family. Therefore the mortgage could not bepaid. At last the banker who had loaned him the money said that if hedid not pay on a certain day, his farm would be taken away from him.
This worried Uncle Henry a good deal, for without the farm he wouldhave no way to earn a living. He was a good man, and worked in thefield as hard as he could; and Aunt Em did all the housework, withDorothy's help. Yet they did not seem to get along.
This little girl, Dorothy, was like dozens of little girls you know.She was loving and usually sweet-tempered, and had a round rosy faceand earnest eyes. Life was a serious thing to Dorothy, and a wonderfulthing, too, for she had encountered more strange adventures in hershort life than many other girls of her age.
Aunt Em once said she thought the fairies must have marked Dorothy ather birth, because she had wandered into strange places and had alwaysbeen protected by some unseen power. As for Uncle Henry, he thoughthis little niece merely a dreamer, as her dead mother had been, for hecould not quite believe all the curious stories Dorothy told them ofthe Land of Oz, which she had several times visited. He did not thinkthat she tried to deceive her uncle and aunt, but he imagined that shehad dreamed all of those astonishing adventures, and that the dreamshad been so real to her that she had come to believe them true.
Whatever the explanation might be, it was certain that Dorothy had beenabsent from her Kansas home for several long periods, alwaysdisappearing unexpectedly, yet always coming back safe and sound, withamazing tales of where she had been and the unusual people she had met.Her uncle and aunt listened to her stories eagerly and in spite oftheir doubts began to feel that the little girl had gained a lot ofexperience and wisdom that were unaccountable in this age, when fairiesare supposed no longer to exist.
Most of Dorothy's stories were about the Land of Oz, with its beautifulEmerald City and a lovely girl Ruler named Ozma, who was the mostfaithful friend of the little Kansas girl. When Dorothy told about theriches of this fairy country Uncle Henry would sigh, for he knew that asingle one of the great emeralds that were so common there would payall his debts and leave his farm free. But Dorothy never brought anyjewels home with her, so their poverty became greater every year.
When the banker told Uncle Henry that he must pay the money in thirtydays or leave the farm, the poor man was in despair, as he knew hecould not possibly get the money. So he told his wife, Aunt Em, of histrouble, and she first cried a little and then said that they must bebrave and do the best they could, and go away somewhere and try to earnan honest living. But they were getting old and feeble and she fearedthat they could not take care of Dorothy as well as they had formerlydone. Probably the little girl would also be obliged to go to work.
They did not tell their niece the sad news for several days, notwishing to make her unhappy; but one morning the little girl found AuntEm softly crying while Uncle Henry tried to comfort her. Then Dorothyasked them to tell her what was the matter.
"We must give up the farm, my dear," replied her uncle sadly, "andwander away into the world to work for our living."
The girl listened quite seriously, for she had not known before howdesperately poor they were.
"We don't mind for ourselves," said her aunt, stroking the littlegirl's head tenderly; "but we love you as if you were our own child,and we are heart-broken to think that you must also endure poverty, andwork for a living before you have grown big and strong."
"What could I do to earn money?" asked Dorothy.
"You might do housework for some one, dear, you are so handy; orperhaps you could be a nurse-maid to little children. I'm sure I don'tknow exactly what you CAN do to earn money, but if your uncle and I areable to support you we will do it willingly, and send you to school.We fear, though, that we shall have much trouble in earning a livingfor ourselves. No one wants to employ old people who are broken downin health, as we are."
"Wouldn't it be funny," she said, "for me to do housework in Kansas,when I'm a Princess in the Land of Oz?"
"A Princess!" they both exclaimed, astonished.
"Yes; Ozma made me a Princess some time ago, and she has often beggedme to come and live always in the Emerald City," said the child.
Her uncle and aunt looked at her in amazement. Then the man said:
"Do you suppose you could manage to return to your fairyland, my dear?"
"Oh yes," replied Dorothy; "I could do that easily."
"How?" asked Aunt Em.
"Ozma sees me every day at four o'clock, in her Magic Picture. She cansee me wherever I am, no matter what I am doing. And at that time, ifI make a certain secret sign, she will send for me by means of theMagic Belt, which I once captured from the Nome King. Then, in thewink of an eye, I shall be with Ozma in her palace."
The elder people remained silent for some time after Dorothy hadspoken. Finally, Aunt Em said, with another sigh of regret:
"If that is the case, Dorothy, perhaps you'd better go and live in theEmerald City. It will break our hearts to lose you from our lives, butyou will be so much better off with your fairy friends that it seemswisest and best for you to go."
"I'm not so sure about that," remarked Uncle Henry, shaking his grayhead doubtfully. "These things all seem real to Dorothy, I know; butI'm afraid our little girl won't find her fairyland just what she haddreamed it to be. It would make me very unhappy to think that she waswandering among strangers who might be unkind to her."
Dorothy laughed merrily at this speech, and then she became very soberagain, for she could see how all this trouble was worrying her aunt anduncle, and knew that unless she found a way to help them their futurelives would be quite miserable and unhappy. She knew that she COULDhelp them. She had thought of a way already. Yet she did not tellthem at once what it was, because she must ask Ozma's consent beforeshe would be able to carry out her plans.
So she only said:
"If you will promise not to worry a bit about me, I'll go to the Landof Oz this very afternoon. And I'll make a promise, too; that youshall both see me again before the day comes when you must leave thisfarm."
"The day isn't far away, now," her uncle sadly replied. "I did nottell you of our trouble until I was obliged to, dear Dorothy, so theevil time is near at hand. But if you are quite sure your fairyfriends will give you a home, it will be best for you to go to them, asyour aunt says."
That was why Dorothy went to her little room in the attic thatafternoon, taking with her a small dog named Toto. The dog had curlyblack hair and big brown eyes and loved Dorothy very dearly.
The child had kissed her uncle and aunt affectionately before she wentupstairs, and now she looked around her little room rather wistfully,gazing at the simple trinkets and worn calico and gingham dresses, asif they were old friends. She was tempted at first to make a bundle ofthem, yet she knew very well that they would be of no use to her in herfuture life.
She sat down upon a broken-backed chair--the only one the roomcontained--and holding Toto in her arms waited patiently until theclock struck four.
Then she made the secret signal that had been agreed upon between herand Ozma.
Uncle Henry and Aunt Em waited downstairs. They were uneasy and a gooddeal excited, for this is a practical humdrum world, and it seemed tothem quite impossible that their little niece could vanish from herhome and travel instantly to fairyland.
So they watched the stairs, which seemed to be the only way thatDorothy could get out of the farmhouse, and they watched them a longtime. They heard the clock strike four but there was no sound fromabove.
Half-past four came, and now they were too impatient to wait anylonger. Softly, they crept up the stairs to the door of the littlegirl's room.
"Dorothy! Dorothy!" they called.
There was no answer.
They opened the door and looked in.
The room was empty.
3. How Ozma Granted Dorothy's Request
I suppose you have read so much about the magnificent Emerald City thatthere is little need for me to describe it here. It is the CapitalCity of the Land of Oz, which is justly considered the most attractiveand delightful fairyland in all the world.
The Emerald City is built all of beautiful marbles in which are set aprofusion of emeralds, every one exquisitely cut and of very greatsize. There are other jewels used in the decorations inside the housesand palaces, such as rubies, diamonds, sapphires, amethysts andturquoises. But in the streets and upon the outside of the buildingsonly emeralds appear, from which circumstance the place is named theEmerald City of Oz. It has nine thousand, six hundred and fifty-fourbuildings, in which lived fifty-seven thousand three hundred andeighteen people, up to the time my story opens.
All the surrounding country, extending to the borders of the desertwhich enclosed it upon every side, was full of pretty and comfortablefarmhouses, in which resided those inhabitants of Oz who preferredcountry to city life.
Altogether there were more than half a million people in the Land ofOz--although some of them, as you will soon learn, were not made offlesh and blood as we are--and every inhabitant of that favored countrywas happy and prosperous.
No disease of any sort was ever known among the Ozites, and so no oneever died unless he met with an accident that prevented him fromliving. This happened very seldom, indeed. There were no poor peoplein the Land of Oz, because there was no such thing as money, and allproperty of every sort belonged to the Ruler. The people were herchildren, and she cared for them. Each person was given freely by hisneighbors whatever he required for his use, which is as much as any onemay reasonably desire. Some tilled the lands and raised great crops ofgrain, which was divided equally among the entire population, so thatall had enough. There were many tailors and dressmakers and shoemakersand the like, who made things that any who desired them might wear.Likewise there were jewelers who made ornaments for the person, whichpleased and beautified the people, and these ornaments also were freeto those who asked for them. Each man and woman, no matter what he orshe produced for the good of the community, was supplied by theneighbors with food and clothing and a house and furniture andornaments and games. If by chance the supply ever ran short, more wastaken from the great storehouses of the Ruler, which were afterwardfilled up again when there was more of any article than the peopleneeded.
Every one worked half the time and played half the time, and the peopleenjoyed the work as much as they did the play, because it is good to beoccupied and to have something to do. There were no cruel overseersset to watch them, and no one to rebuke them or to find fault withthem. So each one was proud to do all he could for his friends andneighbors, and was glad when they would accept the things he produced.
You will know by what I have here told you, that the Land of Oz was aremarkable country. I do not suppose such an arrangement would bepractical with us, but Dorothy assures me that it works finely with theOz people.
Oz being a fairy country, the people were, of course, fairy people; butthat does not mean that all of them were very unlike the people of ourown world. There were all sorts of queer characters among them, butnot a single one who was evil, or who possessed a selfish or violentnature. They were peaceful, kind hearted, loving and merry, and everyinhabitant adored the beautiful girl who ruled them and delighted toobey her every command.
In spite of all I have said in a general way, there were some parts ofthe Land of Oz not quite so pleasant as the farming country and theEmerald City which was its center. Far away in the South Country therelived in the mountains a band of strange people called Hammer-Heads,because they had no arms and used their flat heads to pound any one whocame near them. Their necks were like rubber, so that they could shootout their heads to quite a distance, and afterward draw them back againto their shoulders. The Hammer-Heads were called the "Wild People,"but never harmed any but those who disturbed them in the mountainswhere they lived.
In some of the dense forests there lived great beasts of every sort;yet these were for the most part harmless and even sociable, andconversed agreeably with those who visited their haunts. TheKalidahs--beasts with bodies like bears and heads like tigers--had oncebeen fierce and bloodthirsty, but even they were now nearly all tamed,although at times one or another of them would get cross anddisagreeable.
Not so tame were the Fighting Trees, which had a forest of their own.If any one approached them these curious trees would bend down theirbranches, twine them around the intruders, and hurl them away.
But these unpleasant things existed only in a few remote parts of theLand of Oz. I suppose every country has some drawbacks, so even thisalmost perfect fairyland could not be quite perfect. Once there hadbeen wicked witches in the land, too; but now these had all beendestroyed; so, as I said, only peace and happiness reigned in Oz.
For some time Ozma had ruled over this fair country, and never wasRuler more popular or beloved. She is said to be the most beautifulgirl the world has ever known, and her heart and mind are as lovely asher person.
Dorothy Gale had several times visited the Emerald City and experiencedadventures in the Land of Oz, so that she and Ozma had now become firmfriends. The girl Ruler had even made Dorothy a Princess of Oz, andhad often implored her to come to Ozma's stately palace and live therealways; but Dorothy had been loyal to her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, whohad cared for her since she was a baby, and she had refused to leavethem because she knew they would be lonely without her.
However, Dorothy now realized that things were going to be differentwith her uncle and aunt from this time forth, so after giving thematter deep thought she decided to ask Ozma to grant her a very greatfavor.
A few seconds after she had made the secret signal in her littlebedchamber, the Kansas girl was seated in a lovely room in Ozma'spalace in the Emerald City of Oz. When the first loving kisses andembraces had been exchanged, the fair Ruler inquired:
"What is the matter, dear? I know something unpleasant has happened toyou, for your face was very sober when I saw it in my Magic Picture.And whenever you signal me to transport you to this safe place, whereyou are always welcome, I know you are in danger or in trouble."
"This time, Ozma, it isn't I," she replied. "But it's worse, I guess,for Uncle Henry and Aunt Em are in a heap of trouble, and there seemsno way for them to get out of it--anyhow, not while they live inKansas."
"Tell me about it, Dorothy," said Ozma, with ready sympathy.
"Why, you see Uncle Henry is poor; for the farm in Kansas doesn't'mount to much, as farms go. So one day Uncle Henry borrowed somemoney, and wrote a letter saying that if he didn't pay the money backthey could take his farm for pay. Course he 'spected to pay by makingmoney from the farm; but he just couldn't. An' so they're going totake the farm, and Uncle Henry and Aunt Em won't have any place tolive. They're pretty old to do much hard work, Ozma; so I'll have towork for them, unless--"
Ozma had been thoughtful during the story, but now she smiled andpressed her little friend's hand.
"Unless what, dear?" she asked.
Dorothy hesitated, because her request meant so much to them all.
"Well," said she, "I'd like to live here in the Land of Oz, whereyou've often 'vited me to live. But I can't, you know, unless UncleHenry and Aunt Em could live here too."
"Of course not," exclaimed the Ruler of Oz, laughing gaily. "So, inorder to get you, little friend, we must invite your Uncle and Aunt tolive in Oz, also."
"Oh, will you, Ozma?" cried Dorothy, clasping her chubby little handseagerly. "Will you bring them here with the Magic Belt, and give thema nice little farm in the Munchkin Country, or the Winkie Country--orsome other place?"
"To be sure," answered Ozma, full of joy at the chance to please herlittle friend. "I have long been thinking of this very thing, Dorothydear, and often I have had it in my mind to propose it to you. I amsure your uncle and aunt must be good and worthy people, or you wouldnot love them so much; and for YOUR friends, Princess, there is alwaysroom in the Land of Oz."
Dorothy was delighted, yet not altogether surprised, for she had clungto the hope that Ozma would be kind enough to grant her request. When,indeed, had her powerful and faithful friend refused her anything?
"But you must not call me 'Princess'," she said; "for after this Ishall live on the little farm with Uncle Henry and Aunt Em, andprincesses ought not to live on farms."
"Princess Dorothy will not," replied Ozma with her sweet smile. "Youare going to live in your own rooms in this palace, and be my constantcompanion."
"But Uncle Henry--" began Dorothy.
"Oh, he is old, and has worked enough in his lifetime," interrupted thegirl Ruler; "so we must find a place for your uncle and aunt where theywill be comfortable and happy and need not work more than they care to.When shall we transport them here, Dorothy?"
"I promised to go and see them again before they were turned out of thefarmhouse," answered Dorothy; "so--perhaps next Saturday--"
"But why wait so long?" asked Ozma. "And why make the journey back toKansas again? Let us surprise them, and bring them here without anywarning."
"I'm not sure that they believe in the Land of Oz," said Dorothy,"though I've told 'em 'bout it lots of times."
"They'll believe when they see it," declared Ozma; "and if they aretold they are to make a magical journey to our fairyland, it may makethem nervous. I think the best way will be to use the Magic Beltwithout warning them, and when they have arrived you can explain tothem whatever they do not understand."
"Perhaps that's best," decided Dorothy. "There isn't much use in theirstaying at the farm until they are put out, 'cause it's much nicerhere."
"Then to-morrow morning they shall come here," said Princess Ozma. "Iwill order Jellia Jamb, who is the palace housekeeper, to have roomsall prepared for them, and after breakfast we will get the Magic Beltand by its aid transport your uncle and aunt to the Emerald City."
"Thank you, Ozma!" cried Dorothy, kissing her friend gratefully.
"And now," Ozma proposed, "let us take a walk in the gardens before wedress for dinner. Come, Dorothy dear!"
4. How The Nome King Planned Revenge
The reason most people are bad is because they do not try to be good.Now, the Nome King had never tried to be good, so he was very badindeed. Having decided to conquer the Land of Oz and to destroy theEmerald City and enslave all its people, King Roquat the Red keptplanning ways to do this dreadful thing, and the more he planned themore he believed he would be able to accomplish it.
About the time Dorothy went to Ozma the Nome King called his ChiefSteward to him and said:
"Kaliko, I think I shall make you the General of my armies."
"I think you won't," replied Kaliko, positively.
"Why not?" inquired the King, reaching for his scepter with the bigsapphire.
"Because I'm your Chief Steward and know nothing of warfare," saidKaliko, preparing to dodge if anything were thrown at him. "I manageall the affairs of your kingdom better than you could yourself, andyou'll never find another Steward as good as I am. But there are ahundred Nomes better fitted to command your army, and your Generals getthrown away so often that I have no desire to be one of them."
"Ah, there is some truth in your remarks, Kaliko," remarked the King,deciding not to throw the scepter. "Summon my army to assemble in theGreat Cavern."
Kaliko bowed and retired, and in a few minutes returned to say that thearmy was assembled. So the King went out upon a balcony thatoverlooked the Great Cavern, where fifty thousand Nomes, all armed withswords and pikes, stood marshaled in military array.
When they were not required as soldiers all these Nomes were metalworkers and miners, and they had hammered so much at the forges and dugso hard with pick and shovel that they had acquired great muscularstrength. They were strangely formed creatures, rather round and notvery tall. Their toes were curly and their ears broad and flat.
In time of war every Nome left his forge or mine and became part of thegreat army of King Roquat. The soldiers wore rock-colored uniforms andwere excellently drilled.
The King looked upon this tremendous army, which stood silently arrayedbefore him, and a cruel smile curled the corners of his mouth, for hesaw that his legions were very powerful. Then he addressed them fromthe balcony, saying:
"I have thrown away General Blug, because he did not please me. So Iwant another General to command this army. Who is next in command?"
"I am," replied Colonel Crinkle, a dapper-looking Nome, as he steppedforward to salute his monarch.
The King looked at him carefully and said:
"I want you to march this army through an underground tunnel, which Iam going to bore, to the Emerald City of Oz. When you get there I wantyou to conquer the Oz people, destroy them and their city, and bringall their gold and silver and precious stones back to my cavern. Alsoyou are to recapture my Magic Belt and return it to me. Will you dothis, General Crinkle?"
"No, your Majesty," replied the Nome; "for it can't be done."
"Oh indeed!" exclaimed the King. Then he turned to his servants andsaid: "Please take General Crinkle to the torture chamber. There youwill kindly slice him into thin slices. Afterward you may feed him tothe seven-headed dogs."
"Anything to oblige your Majesty," replied the servants, politely, andled the condemned man away.
When they had gone, the King addressed the army again.
"Listen!" said he. "The General who is to command my armies mustpromise to carry out my orders. If he fails he will share the fate ofpoor Crinkle. Now, then, who will volunteer to lead my hosts to theEmerald City?"
For a time no one moved and all were silent. Then an old Nome withwhite whiskers so long that they were tied around his waist to preventtheir tripping him up, stepped out of the ranks and saluted the King.
"I'd like to ask a few questions, your Majesty," he said.
"Go ahead," replied the King.
"These Oz people are quite good, are they not?"
"As good as apple pie," said the King.
"And they are happy, I suppose?" continued the old Nome.
"Happy as the day is long," said the King.
"And contented and prosperous?" inquired the Nome.
"Very much so," said the King.
"Well, your Majesty," remarked he of the white whiskers, "I think Ishould like to undertake the job, so I'll be your General. I hate goodpeople; I detest happy people; I'm opposed to any one who is contentedand prosperous. That is why I am so fond of your Majesty. Make meyour General and I'll promise to conquer and destroy the Oz people. IfI fail I'm ready to be sliced thin and fed to the seven-headed dogs."
"Very good! Very good, indeed! That's the way to talk!" cried Roquatthe Red, who was greatly pleased. "What is your name, General?"
"I'm called Guph, your Majesty."
"Well, Guph, come with me to my private cave, and we'll talk it over."Then he turned to the army. "Nomes and soldiers," said he, "you are toobey the commands of General Guph until he becomes dog-feed. Any manwho fails to obey his new General will be promptly thrown away. Youare now dismissed."
Guph went to the King's private cave and sat down upon an amethystchair and put his feet on the arm of the King's ruby throne. Then helighted his pipe and threw the live coal he had taken from his pocketupon the King's left foot and puffed the smoke into the King's eyes andmade himself comfortable. For he was a wise old Nome, and he knew thatthe best way to get along with Roquat the Red was to show that he wasnot afraid of him.
"I'm ready for the talk, your Majesty," he said.
The King coughed and looked at his new General fiercely.
"Do you not tremble to take such liberties with your monarch?" he asked.
"Oh no," replied Guph, calmly, and he blew a wreath of smoke thatcurled around the King's nose and made him sneeze. "You want toconquer the Emerald City, and I'm the only Nome in all your dominionswho can conquer it. So you will be very careful not to hurt me until Ihave carried out your wishes. After that--"
"Well, what then?" inquired the King.
"Then you will be so grateful to me that you won't care to hurt me,"replied the General.
"That is a very good argument," said Roquat. "But suppose you fail?"
"Then it's the slicing machine. I agree to that," announced Guph."But if you do as I tell you there will be no failure. The troublewith you, Roquat, is that you don't think carefully enough. I do. Youwould go ahead and march through your tunnel into Oz, and get defeatedand driven back. I won't. And the reason I won't is because when Imarch I'll have all my plans made, and a host of allies to assist myNomes."
"What do you mean by that?" asked the King.
"I'll explain, King Roquat. You're going to attack a fairy country,and a mighty fairy country, too. They haven't much of an army in Oz,but the Princess who ruled them has a fairy wand; and the little girlDorothy has your Magic Belt; and at the North of the Emerald City livesa clever sorceress called Glinda the Good, who commands the spirits ofthe air. Also I have heard that there is a wonderful Wizard in Ozma'spalace, who is so skillful that people used to pay him money in Americato see him perform. So you see it will be no easy thing to overcomeall this magic."
"We have fifty thousand soldiers!" cried the King proudly.
"Yes; but they are Nomes," remarked Guph, taking a silk handkerchieffrom the King's pocket and wiping his own pointed shoes with it."Nomes are immortals, but they are not strong on magic. When you lostyour famous Belt the greater part of your own power was gone from you.Against Ozma you and your Nomes would have no show at all."
Roquat's eyes flashed angrily.
"Then away you go to the slicing machine!" he cried.
"Not yet," said the General, filling his pipe from the King's privatetobacco pouch.
"What do you propose to do?" asked the monarch.
"I propose to obtain the power we need," answered Guph. "There are agood many evil creatures who have magic powers sufficient to destroyand conquer the Land of Oz. We will get them on our side, band themall together, and then take Ozma and her people by surprise. It's allvery simple and easy when you know how. Alone, we should be helplessto injure the Ruler of Oz, but with the aid of the evil powers we cansummon we shall easily succeed."
King Roquat was delighted with this idea, for he realized how clever itwas.
"Surely, Guph, you are the greatest General I have ever had!" heexclaimed, his eyes sparkling with joy. "You must go at once and makearrangements with the evil powers to assist us, and meantime I'll beginto dig the tunnel."
"I thought you'd agree with me, Roquat," replied the new General."I'll start this very afternoon to visit the Chief of the Whimsies."
5. How Dorothy Became a Princess
When the people of the Emerald City heard that Dorothy had returned tothem every one was eager to see her, for the little girl was a generalfavorite in the Land of Oz. From time to time some of the folk fromthe great outside world had found their way into this fairyland, butall except one had been companions of Dorothy and had turned out to bevery agreeable people. The exception I speak of was the wonderfulWizard of Oz, a sleight-of-hand performer from Omaha who went up in aballoon and was carried by a current of air to the Emerald City. Hisqueer and puzzling tricks made the people of Oz believe him a greatwizard for a time, and he ruled over them until Dorothy arrived on herfirst visit and showed the Wizard to be a mere humbug. He was agentle, kind-hearted little man, and Dorothy grew to like himafterward. When, after an absence, the Wizard returned to the Land ofOz, Ozma received him graciously and gave him a home in a part of thepalace.
In addition to the Wizard two other personages from the outside worldhad been allowed to make their home in the Emerald City. The first wasa quaint Shaggy Man, whom Ozma had made the Governor of the RoyalStorehouses, and the second a Yellow Hen named Billina, who had a finehouse in the gardens back of the palace, where she looked after a largefamily. Both these had been old comrades of Dorothy, so you see thelittle girl was quite an important personage in Oz, and the peoplethought she had brought them good luck, and loved her next best toOzma. During her several visits this little girl had been the means ofdestroying two wicked witches who oppressed the people, and she haddiscovered a live scarecrow who was now one of the most popularpersonages in all the fairy country. With the Scarecrow's help she hadrescued Nick Chopper, a Tin Woodman, who had rusted in a lonely forest,and the tin man was now the Emperor of the Country of the Winkies andmuch beloved because of his kind heart. No wonder the people thoughtDorothy had brought them good luck! Yet, strange as it may seem, shehad accomplished all these wonders not because she was a fairy or hadany magical powers whatever, but because she was a simple, sweet andtrue little girl who was honest to herself and to all whom she met. Inthis world in which we live simplicity and kindness are the only magicwands that work wonders, and in the Land of Oz Dorothy found these samequalities had won for her the love and admiration of the people.Indeed, the little girl had made many warm friends in the fairycountry, and the only real grief the Ozites had ever experienced waswhen Dorothy left them and returned to her Kansas home.
Now she received a joyful welcome, although no one except Ozma knew atfirst that she had finally come to stay for good and all.
That evening Dorothy had many callers, and among them were suchimportant people as Tiktok, a machine man who thought and spoke andmoved by clockwork; her old companion the genial Shaggy Man; JackPumpkinhead, whose body was brush-wood and whose head was a ripepumpkin with a face carved upon it; the Cowardly Lion and the HungryTiger, two great beasts from the forest, who served Princess Ozma, andProfessor H. M. Wogglebug, T.E. This wogglebug was a remarkablecreature. He had once been a tiny little bug, crawling around in aschool-room, but he was discovered and highly magnified so that hecould be seen more plainly, and while in this magnified condition hehad escaped. He had always remained big, and he dressed like a dandyand was so full of knowledge and information (which are distinctacquirements) that he had been made a Professor and the head of theRoyal College.
Dorothy had a nice visit with these old friends, and also talked a longtime with the Wizard, who was little and old and withered and dried up,but as merry and active as a child. Afterward, she went to seeBillina's fast-growing family of chicks.
Toto, Dorothy's little black dog, also met with a cordial reception.Toto was an especial friend of the Shaggy Man, and he knew every oneelse. Being the only dog in the Land of Oz, he was highly respected bythe people, who believed animals entitled to every consideration ifthey behaved themselves properly.
Dorothy had four lovely rooms in the palace, which were always reservedfor her use and were called "Dorothy's rooms." These consisted of abeautiful sitting room, a dressing room, a dainty bedchamber and a bigmarble bathroom. And in these rooms were everything that heart coulddesire, placed there with loving thoughtfulness by Ozma for her littlefriend's use. The royal dressmakers had the little girl's measure, sothey kept the closets in her dressing room filled with lovely dressesof every description and suitable for every occasion. No wonderDorothy had refrained from bringing with her her old calico and ginghamdresses! Here everything that was dear to a little girl's heart wassupplied in profusion, and nothing so rich and beautiful could everhave been found in the biggest department stores in America. Of courseDorothy enjoyed all these luxuries, and the only reason she hadheretofore preferred to live in Kansas was because her uncle and auntloved her and needed her with them.
Now, however, all was to be changed, and Dorothy was really moredelighted to know that her dear relatives were to share in her goodfortune and enjoy the delights of the Land of Oz, than she was topossess such luxury for herself.
Next morning, at Ozma's request, Dorothy dressed herself in a prettysky-blue gown of rich silk, trimmed with real pearls. The buckles ofher shoes were set with pearls, too, and more of these priceless gemswere on a lovely coronet which she wore upon her forehead. "For," saidher friend Ozma, "from this time forth, my dear, you must assume yourrightful rank as a Princess of Oz, and being my chosen companion youmust dress in a way befitting the dignity of your position."
Dorothy agreed to this, although she knew that neither gowns nor jewelscould make her anything else than the simple, unaffected little girlshe had always been.
As soon as they had breakfasted--the girls eating together in Ozma'spretty boudoir--the Ruler of Oz said:
"Now, dear friend, we will use the Magic Belt to transport your uncleand aunt from Kansas to the Emerald City. But I think it would befitting, in receiving such distinguished guests, for us to sit in myThrone Room."
"Oh, they're not very 'stinguished, Ozma," said Dorothy. "They're justplain people, like me."
"Being your friends and relatives, Princess Dorothy, they are certainlydistinguished," replied the Ruler, with a smile.
"They--they won't hardly know what to make of all your splendidfurniture and things," protested Dorothy, gravely. "It may scare 'emto see your grand Throne Room, an' p'raps we'd better go into the backyard, Ozma, where the cabbages grow an' the chickens are playing. Thenit would seem more natural to Uncle Henry and Aunt Em."
"No; they shall first see me in my Throne Room," replied Ozma,decidedly; and when she spoke in that tone Dorothy knew it was not wiseto oppose her, for Ozma was accustomed to having her own way.
So together they went to the Throne Room, an immense domed chamber inthe center of the palace. Here stood the royal throne, made of solidgold and encrusted with enough precious stones to stock a dozen jewelrystores in our country.
Ozma, who was wearing the Magic Belt, seated herself in the throne, andDorothy sat at her feet. In the room were assembled many ladies andgentlemen of the court, clothed in rich apparel and wearing finejewelry. Two immense animals squatted, one on each side of thethrone--the Cowardly Lion and the Hungry Tiger. In a balcony high upin the dome an orchestra played sweet music, and beneath the dome twoelectric fountains sent sprays of colored perfumed water shooting upnearly as high as the arched ceiling.
"Are you ready, Dorothy?" asked the Ruler.
"I am," replied Dorothy; "but I don't know whether Aunt Em and UncleHenry are ready."
"That won't matter," declared Ozma. "The old life can have very littleto interest them, and the sooner they begin the new life here thehappier they will be. Here they come, my dear!"
As she spoke, there before the throne appeared Uncle Henry and Aunt Em,who for a moment stood motionless, glaring with white and startledfaces at the scene that confronted them. If the ladies and gentlemenpresent had not been so polite I am sure they would have laughed at thetwo strangers.
Aunt Em had her calico dress skirt "tucked up," and she wore a faded,blue-checked apron. Her hair was rather straggly and she had on a pairof Uncle Henry's old slippers. In one hand she held a dish-towel andin the other a cracked earthenware plate, which she had been engaged inwiping when so suddenly transported to the Land of Oz.
Uncle Henry, when the summons came, had been out in the barn "doin'chores." He wore a ragged and much soiled straw hat, a checked shirtwithout any collar and blue overalls tucked into the tops of his oldcowhide boots.
"By gum!" gasped Uncle Henry, looking around as if bewildered.
"Well, I swan!" gurgled Aunt Em in a hoarse, frightened voice. Thenher eyes fell upon Dorothy, and she said: "D-d-d-don't that look likeour little girl--our Dorothy, Henry?"
"Hi, there--look out, Em!" exclaimed the old man, as Aunt Em advanced astep; "take care o' the wild beastses, or you're a goner!"
But now Dorothy sprang forward and embraced and kissed her aunt anduncle affectionately, afterward taking their hands in her own.
"Don't be afraid," she said to them. "You are now in the Land of Oz,where you are to live always, and be comfer'ble an' happy. You'llnever have to worry over anything again, 'cause there won't be anythingto worry about. And you owe it all to the kindness of my friendPrincess Ozma."
Here she led them before the throne and continued:
"Your Highness, this is Uncle Henry. And this is Aunt Em. They wantto thank you for bringing them here from Kansas."
Aunt Em tried to "slick" her hair, and she hid the dish-towel and dishunder her apron while she bowed to the lovely Ozma. Uncle Henry tookoff his straw hat and held it awkwardly in his hands.
But the Ruler of Oz rose and came from her throne to greet her newlyarrived guests, and she smiled as sweetly upon them as if they had beena king and queen.
"You are very welcome here, where I have brought you for PrincessDorothy's sake," she said, graciously, "and I hope you will be quitehappy in your new home." Then she turned to her courtiers, who weresilently and gravely regarding the scene, and added: "I present to mypeople our Princess Dorothy's beloved Uncle Henry and Aunt Em, who willhereafter be subjects of our kingdom. It will please me to have youshow them every kindness and honor in your power, and to join me inmaking them happy and contented."
Hearing this, all those assembled bowed low and respectfully to the oldfarmer and his wife, who bobbed their own heads in return.
"And now," said Ozma to them, "Dorothy will show you the rooms preparedfor you. I hope you will like them, and shall expect you to join me atluncheon."
So Dorothy led her relatives away, and as soon as they were out of theThrone Room and alone in the corridor, Aunt Em squeezed Dorothy's handand said:
"Child, child! How in the world did we ever get here so quick? And isit all real? And are we to stay here, as she says? And what does itall mean, anyhow?"
"Why didn't you tell us what you were goin' to do?" inquired UncleHenry, reproachfully. "If I'd known about it, I'd 'a put on my Sundayclothes."
"I'll 'splain ever'thing as soon as we get to your rooms," promisedDorothy. "You're in great luck, Uncle Henry and Aunt Em; an' so am I!And oh! I'm so happy to have got you here, at last!"
As he walked by the little girl's side, Uncle Henry stroked hiswhiskers thoughtfully. "'Pears to me, Dorothy, we won't make bang-upfairies," he remarked.
"An' my back hair looks like a fright!" wailed Aunt Em.
"Never mind," returned the little girl, reassuringly. "You won't haveanything to do now but to look pretty, Aunt Em; an' Uncle Henry won'thave to work till his back aches, that's certain."
"Sure?" they asked, wonderingly, and in the same breath.
"Course I'm sure," said Dorothy. "You're in the Fairyland of Oz, now;an' what's more, you belong to it!"
6. How Guph Visited the Whimsies
The new General of the Nome King's army knew perfectly well that tofail in his plans meant death for him. Yet he was not at all anxiousor worried. He hated every one who was good and longed to make all whowere happy unhappy. Therefore he had accepted this dangerous positionas General quite willingly, feeling sure in his evil mind that he wouldbe able to do a lot of mischief and finally conquer the Land of Oz.
Yet Guph determined to be careful, and to lay his plans well, so as notto fail. He argued that only careless people fail in what they attemptto do.
The mountains underneath which the Nome King's extensive caverns werelocated lay grouped just north of the Land of Ev, which lay directlyacross the deadly desert to the east of the Land of Oz. As themountains were also on the edge of the desert the Nome King found thathe had only to tunnel underneath the desert to reach Ozma's dominions.He did not wish his armies to appear above ground in the Country of theWinkies, which was the part of the Land of Oz nearest to King Roquat'sown country, as then the people would give the alarm and enable Ozma tofortify the Emerald City and assemble an army. He wanted to take allthe Oz people by surprise; so he decided to run the tunnel clearthrough to the Emerald City, where he and his hosts could break throughthe ground without warning and conquer the people before they had timeto defend themselves.
Roquat the Red began work at once upon his tunnel, setting a thousandminers at the task and building it high and broad enough for his armiesto march through it with ease. The Nomes were used to making tunnels,as all the kingdom in which they lived was under ground; so they maderapid progress.
While this work was going on General Guph started out alone to visitthe Chief of the Whimsies.
These Whimsies were curious people who lived in a retired country oftheir own. They had large, strong bodies, but heads so small that theywere no bigger than door-knobs. Of course, such tiny heads could notcontain any great amount of brains, and the Whimsies were so ashamed oftheir personal appearance and lack of commonsense that they wore bigheads made of pasteboard, which they fastened over their own littleheads. On these pasteboard heads they sewed sheep's wool for hair, andthe wool was colored many tints--pink, green and lavender being thefavorite colors. The faces of these false heads were painted in manyridiculous ways, according to the whims of the owners, and these big,burly creatures looked so whimsical and absurd in their queer masksthat they were called "Whimsies." They foolishly imagined that no onewould suspect the little heads that were inside the imitation ones, notknowing that it is folly to try to appear otherwise than as nature hasmade us.
The Chief of the Whimsies had as little wisdom as the others, and hadbeen chosen chief merely because none among them was any wiser or morecapable of ruling. The Whimsies were evil spirits and could not bekilled. They were hated and feared by every one and were known asterrible fighters because they were so strong and muscular and had notsense enough to know when they were defeated.
General Guph thought the Whimsies would be a great help to the Nomes inthe conquest of Oz, for under his leadership they could be induced tofight as long so they could stand up. So he traveled to their countryand asked to see the Chief, who lived in a house that had a picture ofhis grotesque false head painted over the doorway.
The Chief's false head had blue hair, a turned-up nose, and a mouththat stretched half across the face. Big green eyes had been paintedupon it, but in the center of the chin were two small holes made in thepasteboard, so that the Chief could see through them with his own tinyeyes; for when the big head was fastened upon his shoulders the eyes inhis own natural head were on a level with the false chin.
Said General Guph to the Chief of the Whimsies:
"We Nomes are going to conquer the Land of Oz and capture our King'sMagic Belt, which the Oz people stole from him. Then we are going toplunder and destroy the whole country. And we want the Whimsies tohelp us."
"Will there be any fighting?" asked the Chief.
"Plenty," replied Guph.
That must have pleased the Chief, for he got up and danced around theroom three times. Then he seated himself again, adjusted his falsehead, and said:
"We have no quarrel with Ozma of Oz."
"But you Whimsies love to fight, and here is a splendid chance to doso," urged Guph.
"Wait till I sing a song," said the Chief. Then he lay back in hischair and sang a foolish song that did not seem to the General to meananything, although he listened carefully. When he had finished, theChief Whimsie looked at him through the holes in his chin and asked:
"What reward will you give us if we help you?"
The General was prepared for this question, for he had been thinkingthe matter over on his journey. People often do a good deed withouthope of reward, but for an evil deed they always demand payment.
"When we get our Magic Belt," he made reply, "our King, Roquat the Red,will use its power to give every Whimsie a natural head as big and fineas the false head he now wears. Then you will no longer be ashamedbecause your big strong bodies have such teenty-weenty heads."
"Oh! Will you do that?" asked the Chief, eagerly.
"We surely will," promised the General.
"I'll talk to my people," said the Chief.
So he called a meeting of all the Whimsies and told them of the offermade by the Nomes. The creatures were delighted with the bargain, andat once agreed to fight for the Nome King and help him to conquer Oz.
One Whimsie alone seemed to have a glimmer of sense, for he asked:
"Suppose we fail to capture the Magic Belt? What will happen then, andwhat good will all our fighting do?"
But they threw him into the river for asking foolish questions, andlaughed when the water ruined his pasteboard head before he could swimout again.
So the compact was made and General Guph was delighted with his successin gaining such powerful allies.
But there were other people, too, just as important as the Whimsies,whom the clever old Nome had determined to win to his side.
7. How Aunt Em Conquered the Lion
"These are your rooms," said Dorothy, opening a door.
Aunt Em drew back at the sight of the splendid furniture and draperies.
"Ain't there any place to wipe my feet?" she asked.
"You will soon change your slippers for new shoes," replied Dorothy."Don't be afraid, Aunt Em. Here is where you are to live, so walkright in and make yourself at home."
Aunt Em advanced hesitatingly.
"It beats the Topeka Hotel!" she cried admiringly. "But this place istoo grand for us, child. Can't we have some back room in the attic,that's more in our class?"
"No," said Dorothy. "You've got to live here, 'cause Ozma says so.And all the rooms in this palace are just as fine as these, and someare better. It won't do any good to fuss, Aunt Em. You've got to beswell and high-toned in the Land of Oz, whether you want to or not; soyou may as well make up your mind to it."
"It's hard luck," replied her aunt, looking around with an awedexpression; "but folks can get used to anything, if they try. Eh,Henry?"
"Why, as to that," said Uncle Henry, slowly, "I b'lieve in takin'what's pervided us, an' askin' no questions. I've traveled some, Em,in my time, and you hain't; an' that makes a difference atween us."
Then Dorothy showed them through the rooms. The first was a handsomesitting-room, with windows opening upon the rose gardens. Then cameseparate bedrooms for Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, with a fine bathroombetween them. Aunt Em had a pretty dressing room, besides, and Dorothyopened the closets and showed several exquisite costumes that had beenprovided for her aunt by the royal dressmakers, who had worked allnight to get them ready. Everything that Aunt Em could possibly needwas in the drawers and closets, and her dressing-table was covered withengraved gold toilet articles.
Uncle Henry had nine suits of clothes, cut in the popular Munchkinfashion, with knee-breeches, silk stockings, and low shoes with jeweledbuckles. The hats to match these costumes had pointed tops and widebrims with small gold bells around the edges. His shirts were of finelinen with frilled bosoms, and his vests were richly embroidered withcolored silks.
Uncle Henry decided that he would first take a bath and then dresshimself in a blue satin suit that had caught his fancy. He acceptedhis good fortune with calm composure and refused to have a servant toassist him. But Aunt Em was "all of a flutter," as she said, and ittook Dorothy and Jellia Jamb, the housekeeper, and two maids a longtime to dress her and do up her hair and get her "rigged like apopinjay," as she quaintly expressed it. She wanted to stop and admireeverything that caught her eye, and she sighed continually and declaredthat such finery was too good for an old country woman, and that shenever thought she would have to "put on airs" at her time of life.
Finally she was dressed, and when she went into the sitting-room therewas Uncle Henry in his blue satin, walking gravely up and down theroom. He had trimmed his beard and mustache and looked very dignifiedand respectable.
"Tell me, Dorothy," he said; "do all the men here wear duds like these?"
"Yes," she replied; "all 'cept the Scarecrow and the Shaggy Man--and ofcourse the Tin Woodman and Tiktok, who are made of metal. You'll findall the men at Ozma's court dressed just as you are--only perhaps alittle finer."
"Henry, you look like a play-actor," announced Aunt Em, looking at herhusband critically.
"An' you, Em, look more highfalutin' than a peacock," he replied.
"I guess you're right," she said regretfully; "but we're helplessvictims of high-toned royalty."
Dorothy was much amused.
"Come with me," she said, "and I'll show you 'round the palace."
She took them through the beautiful rooms and introduced them to allthe people they chanced to meet. Also she showed them her own prettyrooms, which were not far from their own.
"So it's all true," said Aunt Em, wide-eyed with amazement, "and whatDorothy told us of this fairy country was plain facts instead ofdreams! But where are all the strange creatures you used to know here?"
"Yes, where's the Scarecrow?" inquired Uncle Henry.
"Why, he's just now away on a visit to the Tin Woodman, who is Emp'rorof the Winkie Country," answered the little girl. "You'll see him whenhe comes back, and you're sure to like him."
"And where's the Wonderful Wizard?" asked Aunt Em.
"You'll see him at Ozma's luncheon, for he lives here in this palace,"was the reply.
"And Jack Pumpkinhead?"
"Oh, he lives a little way out of town, in his own pumpkin field.We'll go there some time and see him, and we'll call on ProfessorWogglebug, too. The Shaggy Man will be at the luncheon, I guess, andTiktok. And now I'll take you out to see Billina, who has a house ofher own."
So they went into the back yard, and after walking along winding pathssome distance through the beautiful gardens they came to an attractivelittle house where the Yellow Hen sat on the front porch sunningherself.
"Good morning, my dear Mistress," called Billina, fluttering down tomeet them. "I was expecting you to call, for I heard you had come backand brought your uncle and aunt with you."
"We're here for good and all, this time, Billina," cried Dorothy,joyfully. "Uncle Henry and Aunt Em belong to Oz now as much as I do!"
"Then they are very lucky people," declared Billina; "for therecouldn't be a nicer place to live. But come, my dear; I must show youall my Dorothys. Nine are living and have grown up to be veryrespectable hens; but one took cold at Ozma's birthday party and diedof the pip, and the other two turned out to be horrid roosters, so Ihad to change their names from Dorothy to Daniel. They all had theletter 'D' engraved upon their gold lockets, you remember, with yourpicture inside, and 'D' stands for Daniel as well as for Dorothy."
"Did you call both the roosters Daniel?" asked Uncle Henry.
"Yes, indeed. I've nine Dorothys and two Daniels; and the nineDorothys have eighty-six sons and daughters and over three hundredgrandchildren," said Billina, proudly.
"What names do you give 'em all, dear?" inquired the little girl.
"Oh, they are all Dorothys and Daniels, some being Juniors and someDouble-Juniors. Dorothy and Daniel are two good names, and I see noobject in hunting for others," declared the Yellow Hen. "But justthink, Dorothy, what a big chicken family we've grown to be, and ournumbers increase nearly every day! Ozma doesn't know what to do withall the eggs we lay, and we are never eaten or harmed in any way, aschickens are in your country. They give us everything to make uscontented and happy, and I, my dear, am the acknowledged Queen andGovernor of every chicken in Oz, because I'm the eldest and started thewhole colony."
"You ought to be very proud, ma'am," said Uncle Henry, who wasastonished to hear a hen talk so sensibly.
"Oh, I am," she replied. "I've the loveliest pearl necklace you eversaw. Come in the house and I'll show it to you. And I've nine legbracelets and a diamond pin for each wing. But I only wear them onstate occasions."
They followed the Yellow Hen into the house, which Aunt Em declared wasneat as a pin. They could not sit down, because all Billina's chairswere roosting-poles made of silver; so they had to stand while the henfussily showed them her treasures.
Then they had to go into the back rooms occupied by Billina's nineDorothys and two Daniels, who were all plump yellow chickens andgreeted the visitors very politely. It was easy to see that they werewell bred and that Billina had looked after their education.
In the yards were all the children and grandchildren of these elevenelders and they were of all sizes, from well-grown hens to tinychickens just out of the shell. About fifty fluffy yellow youngsterswere at school, being taught good manners and good grammar by a younghen who wore spectacles. They sang in chorus a patriotic song of theLand of Oz, in honor of their visitors, and Aunt Em was much impressedby these talking chickens.
Dorothy wanted to stay and play with the young chickens for awhile, butUncle Henry and Aunt Em had not seen the palace grounds and gardens yetand were eager to get better acquainted with the marvelous anddelightful land in which they were to live.
"I'll stay here, and you can go for a walk," said Dorothy. "You'll beperfec'ly safe anywhere, and may do whatever you want to. When you gettired, go back to the palace and find your rooms, and I'll come to youbefore luncheon is ready."
So Uncle Henry and Aunt Em started out alone to explore the grounds,and Dorothy knew that they couldn't get lost, because all the palacegrounds were enclosed by a high wall of green marble set with emeralds.
It was a rare treat to these simple folk, who had lived in the countryall their lives and known little enjoyment of any sort, to wearbeautiful clothes and live in a palace and be treated with respect andconsideration by all around them. They were very happy indeed as theystrolled up the shady walks and looked upon the gorgeous flowers andshrubs, feeling that their new home was more beautiful than any tonguecould describe.
Suddenly, as they turned a corner and walked through a gap in a highhedge, they came face to face with an enormous Lion, which crouchedupon the green lawn and seemed surprised by their appearance.
They stopped short, Uncle Henry trembling with horror and Aunt Em tooterrified to scream. Next moment the poor woman clasped her husbandaround the neck and cried:
"Save me, Henry, save me!"
"Can't even save myself, Em," he returned, in a husky voice, "for theanimile looks as if it could eat both of us an' lick its chops formore! If I only had a gun--"
"Haven't you, Henry? Haven't you?" she asked anxiously.
"Nary gun, Em. So let's die as brave an' graceful as we can. I knewour luck couldn't last!"
"I won't die. I won't be eaten by a lion!" wailed Aunt Em, glaringupon the huge beast. Then a thought struck her, and she whispered,"Henry, I've heard as savage beastses can be conquered by the humaneye. I'll eye that lion out o' countenance an' save our lives."
"Try it, Em," he returned, also in a whisper. "Look at him as you doat me when I'm late to dinner."
Aunt Em turned upon the Lion a determined countenance and a wilddilated eye. She glared at the immense beast steadily, and the Lion,who had been quietly blinking at them, began to appear uneasy anddisturbed.
"Is anything the matter, ma'am?" he asked, in a mild voice.
At this speech from the terrible beast Aunt Em and Uncle Henry bothwere startled, and then Uncle Henry remembered that this must be theLion they had seen in Ozma's Throne Room.
"Hold on, Em!" he exclaimed. "Quit the eagle eye conquest an' takecourage. I guess this is the same Cowardly Lion Dorothy has told usabout."
"Oh, is it?" she cried, much relieved.
"When he spoke, I got the idea; and when he looked so 'shamed like, Iwas sure of it," Uncle Henry continued.
Aunt Em regarded the animal with new interest.
"Are you the Cowardly Lion?" she inquired. "Are you Dorothy's friend?"
"Yes'm," answered the Lion, meekly. "Dorothy and I are old chums andare very fond of each other. I'm the King of Beasts, you know, and theHungry Tiger and I serve Princess Ozma as her body guards."
"To be sure," said Aunt Em, nodding. "But the King of Beasts shouldn'tbe cowardly."
"I've heard that said before," remarked the Lion, yawning till heshowed two great rows of sharp white teeth; "but that does not keep mefrom being frightened whenever I go into battle."
"What do you do, run?" asked Uncle Henry.
"No; that would be foolish, for the enemy would run after me," declaredthe Lion. "So I tremble with fear and pitch in as hard as I can; andso far I have always won my fight."
"Ah, I begin to understand," said Uncle Henry.
"Were you scared when I looked at you just now?" inquired Aunt Em.
"Terribly scared, madam," answered the Lion, "for at first I thoughtyou were going to have a fit. Then I noticed you were trying toovercome me by the power of your eye, and your glance was so fierce andpenetrating that I shook with fear."
This greatly pleased the lady, and she said quite cheerfully:
"Well, I won't hurt you, so don't be scared any more. I just wanted tosee what the human eye was good for."
"The human eye is a fearful weapon," remarked the Lion, scratching hisnose softly with his paw to hide a smile. "Had I not known you wereDorothy's friends I might have torn you both into shreds in order toescape your terrible gaze."
Aunt Em shuddered at hearing this, and Uncle Henry said hastily:
"I'm glad you knew us. Good morning, Mr. Lion; we'll hope to see youagain--by and by--some time in the future."
"Good morning," replied the Lion, squatting down upon the lawn again."You are likely to see a good deal of me, if you live in the Land ofOz."
8. How the Grand Gallipoot Joined The Nomes
After leaving the Whimsies, Guph continued on his journey andpenetrated far into the Northwest. He wanted to get to the Country ofthe Growleywogs, and in order to do that he must cross the Ripple Land,which was a hard thing to do. For the Ripple Land was a succession ofhills and valleys, all very steep and rocky, and they changed placesconstantly by rippling. While Guph was climbing a hill it sank downunder him and became a valley, and while he was descending into avalley it rose up and carried him to the top of a hill. This was veryperplexing to the traveler, and a stranger might have thought he couldnever cross the Ripple Land at all. But Guph knew that if he keptsteadily on he would get to the end at last; so he paid no attention tothe changing hills and valleys and plodded along as calmly as ifwalking upon the level ground.
The result of this wise persistence was that the General finallyreached firmer soil and, after penetrating a dense forest, came to theDominion of the Growleywogs.
No sooner had he crossed the border of this domain when two guardsseized him and carried him before the Grand Gallipoot of theGrowleywogs, who scowled upon him ferociously and asked him why hedared intrude upon his territory.
"I'm the Lord High General of the Invincible Army of the Nomes, and myname is Guph," was the reply. "All the world trembles when that nameis mentioned."
The Growleywogs gave a shout of jeering laughter at this, and one ofthem caught the Nome in his strong arms and tossed him high into theair. Guph was considerably shaken when he fell upon the hard ground,but he appeared to take no notice of the impertinence and composedhimself to speak again to the Grand Gallipoot.
"My master, King Roquat the Red, has sent me here to confer with you.He wishes your assistance to conquer the Land of Oz."
Here the General paused, and the Grand Gallipoot scowled upon him moreterribly than ever and said:
The voice of the Grand Gallipoot was partly a roar and partly a growl.He mumbled his words badly and Guph had to listen carefully in order tounderstand him.
These Growleywogs were certainly remarkable creatures. They were ofgigantic size, yet were all bone and skin and muscle, there being nomeat or fat upon their bodies at all. Their powerful muscles lay justunderneath their skins, like bunches of tough rope, and the weakestGrowleywog was so strong that he could pick up an elephant and toss itseven miles away.
It seems unfortunate that strong people are usually so disagreeable andoverbearing that no one cares for them. In fact, to be different fromyour fellow creatures is always a misfortune. The Growleywogs knewthat they were disliked and avoided by every one, so they had becomesurly and unsociable even among themselves. Guph knew that they hatedall people, including the Nomes; but he hoped to win them over,nevertheless, and knew that if he succeeded they would afford him verypowerful assistance.
"The Land of Oz is ruled by a namby-pamby girl who is disgustingly kindand good," he continued. "Her people are all happy and contented andhave no care or worries whatever."
"Go on!" growled the Grand Gallipoot.
"Once the Nome King enslaved the Royal Family of Ev--anothergoody-goody lot that we detest," said the General. "But Ozmainterfered, although it was none of her business, and marched her armyagainst us. With her was a Kansas girl named Dorothy, and a YellowHen, and they marched directly into the Nome King's cavern. There theyliberated our slaves from Ev and stole King Roquat's Magic Belt, whichthey carried away with them. So now our King is making a tunnel underthe deadly desert, so we can march through it to the Emerald City.When we get there we mean to conquer and destroy all the land andrecapture the Magic Belt."
Again he paused, and again the Grand Gallipoot growled:
Guph tried to think what to say next, and a happy thought soon occurredto him.
"We want you to help us in this conquest," he announced, "for we needthe mighty aid of the Growleywogs in order to make sure that we shallnot be defeated. You are the strongest people in all the world, andyou hate good and happy creatures as much as we Nomes do. I am sure itwill be a real pleasure to you to tear down the beautiful Emerald City,and in return for your valuable assistance we will allow you to bringback to your country ten thousand people of Oz, to be your slaves."
"Twenty thousand!" growled the Grand Gallipoot.
"All right, we promise you twenty thousand," agreed the General.
The Gallipoot made a signal and at once his attendants picked upGeneral Guph and carried him away to a prison, where the jailer amusedhimself by sticking pins in the round fat body of the old Nome, to seehim jump and hear him yell.
But while this was going on the Grand Gallipoot was talking with hiscounselors, who were the most important officials of the Growleywogs.When he had stated to them the proposition of the Nome King, he said:
"My advice is to offer to help them. Then, when we have conquered theLand of Oz, we will take not only our twenty thousand prisoners but allthe gold and jewels we want."
"Let us take the Magic Belt, too," suggested one counselor.
"And rob the Nome King and make him our slave," said another.
"That is a good idea," declared the Grand Gallipoot. "I'd like KingRoquat for my own slave. He could black my boots and bring me myporridge every morning while I am in bed."
"There is a famous Scarecrow in Oz. I'll take him for my slave," saida counselor.
"I'll take Tiktok, the machine man," said another.
"Give me the Tin Woodman," said a third.
They went on for some time, dividing up the people and the treasure ofOz in advance of the conquest. For they had no doubt at all that theywould be able to destroy Ozma's domain. Were they not the strongestpeople in all the world?
"The deadly desert has kept us out of Oz before," remarked the GrandGallipoot, "but now that the Nome King is building a tunnel we shallget into the Emerald City very easily. So let us send the little fatGeneral back to his King with our promise to assist him. We will notsay that we intend to conquer the Nomes after we have conquered Oz, butwe will do so, just the same."
This plan being agreed upon, they all went home to dinner, leavingGeneral Guph still in prison. The Nome had no idea that he hadsucceeded in his mission, for finding himself in prison he feared theGrowleywogs intended to put him to death.
By this time the jailer had tired of sticking pins in the General, andwas amusing himself by carefully pulling the Nome's whiskers out by theroots, one at a time. This enjoyment was interrupted by the GrandGallipoot sending for the prisoner.
"Wait a few hours," begged the jailer. "I haven't pulled out a quarterof his whiskers yet."
"If you keep the Grand Gallipoot waiting, he'll break your back,"declared the messenger.
"Perhaps you're right," sighed the jailer. "Take the prisoner away, ifyou will, but I advise you to kick him at every step he takes. It willbe good fun, for he is as soft as a ripe peach."
So Guph was led away to the royal castle, where the Grand Gallipoottold him that the Growleywogs had decided to assist the Nomes inconquering the Land of Oz.
"Whenever you are ready," he added, "send me word and I will march witheighteen thousand of my most powerful warriors to your aid."
Guph was so delighted that he forgot all the smarting caused by thepins and the pulling of whiskers. He did not even complain of thetreatment he had received, but thanked the Grand Gallipoot and hurriedaway upon his journey.
He had now secured the assistance of the Whimsies and the Growleywogs;but his success made him long for still more allies. His own lifedepended upon his conquering Oz, and he said to himself:
"I'll take no chances. I'll be certain of success. Then, when Oz isdestroyed, perhaps I shall be a greater man than old Roquat, and I canthrow him away and be King of the Nomes myself. Why not? The Whimsiesare stronger than the Nomes, and they also are my friends. There aresome people still stronger than the Growleywogs, and if I can butinduce them to aid me I shall have nothing more to fear."
9. How the Wogglebug Taught Athletics
It did not take Dorothy long to establish herself in her new home, forshe knew the people and the manners and customs of the Emerald Cityjust as well as she knew the old Kansas farm.
But Uncle Henry and Aunt Em had some trouble in getting used to thefinery and pomp and ceremony of Ozma's palace, and felt uneasy becausethey were obliged to be "dressed up" all the time. Yet every one wasvery courteous and kind to them and endeavored to make them happy.Ozma, especially, made much of Dorothy's relatives, for her littlefriend's sake, and she well knew that the awkwardness and strangenessof their new mode of life would all wear off in time.
The old people were chiefly troubled by the fact that there was no workfor them to do.
"Ev'ry day is like Sunday, now," declared Aunt Em, solemnly, "and Ican't say I like it. If they'd only let me do up the dishes aftermeals, or even sweep an' dust my own rooms, I'd be a deal happier.Henry don't know what to do with himself either, and once when he stoleout an' fed the chickens Billina scolded him for letting 'em eatbetween meals. I never knew before what a hardship it is to be richand have everything you want."
These complaints began to worry Dorothy; so she had a long talk withOzma upon the subject.
"I see I must find them something to do," said the girlish Ruler of Oz,seriously. "I have been watching your uncle and aunt, and I believethey will be more contented if occupied with some light tasks. While Iam considering this matter, Dorothy, you might make a trip with themthrough the Land of Oz, visiting some of the odd corners andintroducing your relatives to some of our curious people."
"Oh, that would be fine!" exclaimed Dorothy, eagerly.
"I will give you an escort befitting your rank as a Princess,"continued Ozma; "and you may go to some of the places you have not yetvisited yourself, as well as some others that you know. I will markout a plan of the trip for you and have everything in readiness for youto start to-morrow morning. Take your time, dear, and be gone as longas you wish. By the time you return I shall have found some occupationfor Uncle Henry and Aunt Em that will keep them from being restless anddissatisfied."
Dorothy thanked her good friend and kissed the lovely Ruler gratefully.Then she ran to tell the joyful news to her uncle and aunt.
Next morning, after breakfast, everything was found ready for theirdeparture.
The escort included Omby Amby, the Captain General of Ozma's army,which consisted merely of twenty-seven officers besides the CaptainGeneral. Once Omby Amby had been a private soldier--the only privatein the army--but as there was never any fighting to do Ozma saw no needof a private, so she made Omby Amby the highest officer of them all.He was very tall and slim and wore a gay uniform and a fierce mustache.Yet the mustache was the only fierce thing about Omby Amby, whosenature was as gentle as that of a child.
The wonderful Wizard had asked to join the party, and with him came hisfriend the Shaggy Man, who was shaggy but not ragged, being dressed infine silks with satin shags and bobtails. The Shaggy Man had shaggywhiskers and hair, but a sweet disposition and a soft, pleasant voice.
There was an open wagon, with three seats for the passengers, and thewagon was drawn by the famous wooden Sawhorse which had once beenbrought to life by Ozma by means of a magic powder. The Sawhorse worewooden shoes to keep his wooden legs from wearing away, and he wasstrong and swift. As this curious creature was Ozma's own favoritesteed, and very popular with all the people of the Emerald City,Dorothy knew that she had been highly favored by being permitted to usethe Sawhorse on her journey.
In the front seat of the wagon sat Dorothy and the Wizard. Uncle Henryand Aunt Em sat in the next seat and the Shaggy Man and Omby Amby inthe third seat. Of course Toto was with the party, curled up atDorothy's feet, and just as they were about to start, Billina camefluttering along the path and begged to be taken with them. Dorothyreadily agreed, so the Yellow Hen flew up and perched herself upon thedashboard. She wore her pearl necklace and three bracelets upon eachleg, in honor of the occasion.
Dorothy kissed Ozma good-bye, and all the people standing around wavedtheir handkerchiefs, and the band in an upper balcony struck up amilitary march. Then the Wizard clucked to the Sawhorse and said:"Gid-dap!" and the wooden animal pranced away and drew behind him thebig red wagon and all the passengers, without any effort at all. Aservant threw open a gate of the palace enclosure, that they might passout; and so, with music and shouts following them, the journey wasbegun.
"It's almost like a circus," said Aunt Em, proudly. "I can't helpfeelin' high an' mighty in this kind of a turn-out."
Indeed, as they passed down the street, all the people cheered themlustily, and the Shaggy Man and the Wizard and the Captain General alltook off their hats and bowed politely in acknowledgment.
When they came to the great wall of the Emerald City, the gates wereopened by the Guardian who always tended them. Over the gateway hung adull-colored metal magnet shaped like a horse-shoe, placed against ashield of polished gold.
"That," said the Shaggy Man, impressively, "is the wonderful LoveMagnet. I brought it to the Emerald City myself, and all who passbeneath this gateway are both loving and beloved."
"It's a fine thing," declared Aunt Em, admiringly. "If we'd had it inKansas I guess the man who held a mortgage on the farm wouldn't haveturned us out."
"Then I'm glad we didn't have it," returned Uncle Henry. "I like Ozbetter than Kansas, even; an' this little wood Sawhorse beats all thecritters I ever saw. He don't have to be curried, or fed, or watered,an' he's strong as an ox. Can he talk, Dorothy?"
"Yes, Uncle," replied the child. "But the Sawhorse never says much.He told me once that he can't talk and think at the same time, so heprefers to think."
"Which is very sensible," declared the Wizard, nodding approvingly."Which way do we go, Dorothy?"
"Straight ahead into the Quadling Country," she answered. "I've got aletter of interduction to Miss Cuttenclip."
"Oh!" exclaimed the Wizard, much interested. "Are we going there?Then I'm glad I came, for I've always wanted to meet the Cuttenclips."
"Who are they?" inquired Aunt Em.
"Wait till we get there," replied Dorothy, with a laugh; "then you'llsee for yourself. I've never seen the Cuttenclips, you know, so Ican't 'zactly 'splain 'em to you."
Once free of the Emerald City the Sawhorse dashed away at tremendousspeed. Indeed, he went so fast that Aunt Em had hard work to catch herbreath, and Uncle Henry held fast to the seat of the red wagon.
"Gently--gently, my boy!" called the Wizard, and at this the Sawhorseslackened his speed.
"What's wrong?" asked the animal, slightly turning his wooden head tolook at the party with one eye, which was a knot of wood.
"Why, we wish to admire the scenery, that's all," answered the Wizard.
"Some of your passengers," added the Shaggy Man, "have never been outof the Emerald City before, and the country is all new to them."
"If you go too fast you'll spoil all the fun," said Dorothy. "There'sno hurry."
"Very well; it is all the same to me," observed the Sawhorse; and afterthat he went at a more moderate pace.
Uncle Henry was astonished.
"How can a wooden thing be so intelligent?" he asked.
"Why, I gave him some sawdust brains the last time I fitted his headwith new ears," explained the Wizard. "The sawdust was made from hardknots, and now the Sawhorse is able to think out any knotty problem hemeets with."
"I see," said Uncle Henry.
"I don't," remarked Aunt Em; but no one paid any attention to thisstatement.
Before long they came to a stately building that stood upon a greenplain with handsome shade trees grouped here and there.
"What is that?" asked Uncle Henry.
"That," replied the Wizard, "is the Royal Athletic College of Oz, whichis directed by Professor H. M. Wogglebug, T.E."
"Let's stop and make a call," suggested Dorothy.
So the Sawhorse drew up in front of the great building and they weremet at the door by the learned Wogglebug himself. He seemed fully astall as the Wizard, and was dressed in a red and white checked vest anda blue swallow-tailed coat, and had yellow knee breeches and purplesilk stockings upon his slender legs. A tall hat was jauntily set uponhis head and he wore spectacles over his big bright eyes.
"Welcome, Dorothy," said the Wogglebug; "and welcome to all yourfriends. We are indeed pleased to receive you at this great Temple ofLearning."
"I thought it was an Athletic College," said the Shaggy Man.
"It is, my dear sir," answered the Wogglebug, proudly. "Here it isthat we teach the youth of our great land scientific CollegeAthletics--in all their purity."
"Don't you teach them anything else?" asked Dorothy. "Don't they getany reading, writing and 'rithmetic?"
"Oh, yes; of course. They get all those, and more," returned theProfessor. "But such things occupy little of their time. Pleasefollow me and I will show you how my scholars are usually occupied.This is a class hour and they are all busy."
They followed him to a big field back of the college building, whereseveral hundred young Ozites were at their classes. In one place theyplayed football, in another baseball. Some played tennis, some golf;some were swimming in a big pool. Upon a river which wound through thegrounds several crews in racing boats were rowing with greatenthusiasm. Other groups of students played basketball and cricket,while in one place a ring was roped in to permit boxing and wrestlingby the energetic youths. All the collegians seemed busy and there wasmuch laughter and shouting.
"This college," said Professor Wogglebug, complacently, "is a greatsuccess. Its educational value is undisputed, and we are turning outmany great and valuable citizens every year."
"But when do they study?" asked Dorothy.
"Study?" said the Wogglebug, looking perplexed at the question.
"Yes; when do they get their 'rithmetic, and jogerfy, and such things?"
"Oh, they take doses of those every night and morning," was the reply.
"What do you mean by doses?" Dorothy inquired, wonderingly.
"Why, we use the newly invented School Pills, made by your friend theWizard. These pills we have found to be very effective, and they savea lot of time. Please step this way and I will show you our Laboratoryof Learning."
He led them to a room in the building where many large bottles werestanding in rows upon shelves.
"These are the Algebra Pills," said the Professor, taking down one ofthe bottles. "One at night, on retiring, is equal to four hours ofstudy. Here are the Geography Pills--one at night and one in themorning. In this next bottle are the Latin Pills--one three times aday. Then we have the Grammar Pills--one before each meal--and theSpelling Pills, which are taken whenever needed."
"Your scholars must have to take a lot of pills," remarked Dorothy,thoughtfully. "How do they take 'em, in applesauce?"
"No, my dear. They are sugar-coated and are quickly and easilyswallowed. I believe the students would rather take the pills thanstudy, and certainly the pills are a more effective method. You see,until these School Pills were invented we wasted a lot of time in studythat may now be better employed in practicing athletics."
"Seems to me the pills are a good thing," said Omby Amby, whoremembered how it used to make his head ache as a boy to studyarithmetic.
"They are, sir," declared the Wogglebug, earnestly. "They give us anadvantage over all other colleges, because at no loss of time our boysbecome thoroughly conversant with Greek and Latin, Mathematics andGeography, Grammar and Literature. You see they are never obliged tointerrupt their games to acquire the lesser branches of learning."
"It's a great invention, I'm sure," said Dorothy, looking admiringly atthe Wizard, who blushed modestly at this praise.
"We live in an age of progress," announced Professor Wogglebug,pompously. "It is easier to swallow knowledge than to acquire itlaboriously from books. Is it not so, my friends?"
"Some folks can swallow anything," said Aunt Em, "but to me this seemstoo much like taking medicine."
"Young men in college always have to take their medicine, one way oranother," observed the Wizard, with a smile; "and, as our Professorsays, these School Pills have proved to be a great success. One daywhile I was making them I happened to drop one of them, and one ofBillina's chickens gobbled it up. A few minutes afterward this chickgot upon a roost and recited 'The Boy Stood on the Burning Deck'without making a single mistake. Then it recited 'The Charge of theLight Brigade' and afterwards 'Excelsior.' You see, the chicken hadeaten an Elocution Pill."
They now bade good-bye to the Professor, and thanking him for his kindreception mounted again into the red wagon and continued their journey.
10. How the Cuttenclips Lived
The travelers had taken no provisions with them because they knew thatthey would be welcomed wherever they might go in the Land of Oz, andthat the people would feed and lodge them with genuine hospitality. Soabout noon they stopped at a farm-house and were given a deliciousluncheon of bread and milk, fruits and wheat cakes with maple syrup.After resting a while and strolling through the orchards with theirhost--a round, jolly farmer--they got into the wagon and again startedthe Sawhorse along the pretty, winding road.
There were signposts at all the corners, and finally they came to onewhich read:
TAKE THIS ROAD TO THE CUTTENCLIPS
There was also a hand pointing in the right direction, so they turnedthe Sawhorse that way and found it a very good road, but seeminglylittle traveled.
"I've never seen the Cuttenclips before," remarked Dorothy.
"Nor I," said the Captain General.
"Nor I," said the Wizard.
"Nor I," said Billina.
"I've hardly been out of the Emerald City since I arrived in thiscountry," added the Shaggy Man.
"Why, none of us has been there, then," exclaimed the little girl. "Iwonder what the Cuttenclips are like."
"We shall soon find out," said the Wizard, with a sly laugh. "I'veheard they are rather flimsy things."
The farm-houses became fewer as they proceeded, and the path was attimes so faint that the Sawhorse had hard work to keep in the road.The wagon began to jounce, too; so they were obliged to go slowly.
After a somewhat wearisome journey they came in sight of a high wall,painted blue with pink ornaments. This wall was circular, and seemedto enclose a large space. It was so high that only the tops of thetrees could be seen above it.
The path led up to a small door in the wall, which was closed andlatched. Upon the door was a sign in gold letters reading as follows:
VISITORS are requested to MOVE SLOWLY and CAREFULLY, and to avoidCOUGHING or making any BREEZE or DRAUGHT.
"That's strange," said the Shaggy Man, reading the sign aloud. "WhoARE the Cuttenclips, anyhow?"
"Why, they're paper dolls," answered Dorothy. "Didn't you know that?"
"Paper dolls! Then let's go somewhere else," said Uncle Henry. "We'reall too old to play with dolls, Dorothy."
"But these are different," declared the girl. "They're alive."
"Alive!" gasped Aunt Em, in amazement.
"Yes. Let's go in," said Dorothy.
So they all got out of the wagon, since the door in the wall was notbig enough for them to drive the Sawhorse and wagon through it.
"You stay here, Toto!" commanded Dorothy, shaking her finger at thelittle dog. "You're so careless that you might make a breeze if I letyou inside."
Toto wagged his tail as if disappointed at being left behind; but hemade no effort to follow them. The Wizard unlatched the door, whichopened outward, and they all looked eagerly inside.
Just before the entrance was drawn up a line of tiny soldiers, withuniforms brightly painted and paper guns upon their shoulders. Theywere exactly alike, from one end of the line to the other, and all werecut out of paper and joined together in the centers of their bodies.
As the visitors entered the enclosure the Wizard let the door swingback into place, and at once the line of soldiers tumbled over, fellflat upon their backs, and lay fluttering upon the ground.
"Hi there!" called one of them; "what do you mean by slamming the doorand blowing us over?"
"I beg your pardon, I'm sure," said the Wizard, regretfully. "I didn'tknow you were so delicate."
"We're not delicate!" retorted another soldier, raising his head fromthe ground. "We are strong and healthy; but we can't stand draughts."
"May I help you up?" asked Dorothy.
"If you please," replied the end soldier. "But do it gently, littlegirl."
Dorothy carefully stood up the line of soldiers, who first dusted theirpainted clothes and then saluted the visitors with their paper muskets.From the end it was easy to see that the entire line had been cut outof paper, although from the front the soldiers looked rather solid andimposing.
"I've a letter of introduction from Princess Ozma to Miss Cuttenclip,"announced Dorothy.
"Very well," said the end soldier, and blew upon a paper whistle thathung around his neck. At once a paper soldier in a Captain's uniformcame out of a paper house near by and approached the group at theentrance. He was not very big, and he walked rather stiffly anduncertainly on his paper legs; but he had a pleasant face, with veryred cheeks and very blue eyes, and he bowed so low to the strangersthat Dorothy laughed, and the breeze from her mouth nearly blew theCaptain over. He wavered and struggled and finally managed to remainupon his feet.
"Take care, Miss!" he said, warningly. "You're breaking the rules, youknow, by laughing."
"Oh, I didn't know that," she replied.
"To laugh in this place is nearly as dangerous as to cough," said theCaptain. "You'll have to breathe very quietly, I assure you."
"We'll try to," promised the girl. "May we see Miss Cuttenclip,please?"
"You may," promptly returned the Captain. "This is one of herreception days. Be good enough to follow me."
He turned and led the way up a path, and as they followed slowly,because the paper Captain did not move very swiftly, they took theopportunity to gaze around them at this strange paper country.
Beside the path were paper trees, all cut out very neatly and painted abrilliant green color. And back of the trees were rows of cardboardhouses, painted in various colors but most of them having green blinds.Some were large and some small, and in the front yards were beds ofpaper flowers quite natural in appearance. Over some of the porchespaper vines were twined, giving them a cozy and shady look.
As the visitors passed along the street a good many paper dolls came tothe doors and windows of their houses to look at them curiously. Thesedolls were nearly all the same height, but were cut into variousshapes, some being fat and some lean. The girl dolls wore manybeautiful costumes of tissue paper, making them quite fluffy; but theirheads and hands were no thicker than the paper of which they were made.
Some of the paper people were on the street, walking along orcongregated in groups and talking together; but as soon as they saw thestrangers they all fluttered into the houses as fast as they could go,so as to be out of danger.
"Excuse me if I go edgewise," remarked the Captain as they came to aslight hill. "I can get along faster that way and not flutter so much."
"That's all right," said Dorothy. "We don't mind how you go, I'm sure."
At one side of the street was a paper pump, and a paper boy was pumpingpaper water into a paper pail. The Yellow Hen happened to brushagainst this boy with her wing, and he flew into the air and fell intoa paper tree, where he stuck until the Wizard gently pulled him out.At the same time, the pail went into the air, spilling the paper water,while the paper pump bent nearly double.
"Goodness me!" said the Hen. "If I should flop my wings I believe I'dknock over the whole village!"
"Then don't flop them--please don't!" entreated the Captain. "MissCuttenclip would be very much distressed if her village was spoiled."
"Oh, I'll be careful," promised Billina.
"Are not all these paper girls and women named Miss Cuttenclips?"inquired Omby Amby.
"No indeed," answered the Captain, who was walking better since hebegan to move edgewise. "There is but one Miss Cuttenclip, who is ourQueen, because she made us all. These girls are Cuttenclips, to besure, but their names are Emily and Polly and Sue and Betty and suchthings. Only the Queen is called Miss Cuttenclip."
"I must say that this place beats anything I ever heard of," observedAunt Em. "I used to play with paper dolls myself, an' cut 'em out; butI never thought I'd ever see such things alive."
"I don't see as it's any more curious than hearing hens talk," returnedUncle Henry.
"You're likely to see many queer things in the Land of Oz, sir," saidthe Wizard. "But a fairy country is extremely interesting when you getused to being surprised."
"Here we are!" called the Captain, stopping before a cottage.
This house was made of wood, and was remarkably pretty in design. Inthe Emerald City it would have been considered a tiny dwelling, indeed;but in the midst of this paper village it seemed immense. Real flowerswere in the garden and real trees grew beside it. Upon the front doorwas a sign reading:
Just as they reached the porch the front door opened and a little girlstood before them. She appeared to be about the same age as Dorothy,and smiling upon her visitors she said, sweetly:
"You are welcome."
All the party seemed relieved to find that here was a real girl, offlesh and blood. She was very dainty and pretty as she stood therewelcoming them. Her hair was a golden blonde and her eyes turquoiseblue. She had rosy cheeks and lovely white teeth. Over her simplewhite lawn dress she wore an apron with pink and white checks, and inone hand she held a pair of scissors.
"May we see Miss Cuttenclip, please?" asked Dorothy.
"I am Miss Cuttenclip," was the reply. "Won't you come in?"
She held the door open while they all entered a pretty sitting-roomthat was littered with all sorts of paper--some stiff, some thin, andsome tissue. The sheets and scraps were of all colors. Upon a tablewere paints and brushes, while several pair of scissors, of differentsizes, were lying about.
"Sit down, please," said Miss Cuttenclip, clearing the paper scraps offsome of the chairs. "It is so long since I have had any visitors thatI am not properly prepared to receive them. But I'm sure you willpardon my untidy room, for this is my workshop."
"Do you make all the paper dolls?" inquired Dorothy.
"Yes; I cut them out with my scissors, and paint the faces and some ofthe costumes. It is very pleasant work, and I am happy making my papervillage grow."
"But how do the paper dolls happen to be alive?" asked Aunt Em.
"The first dolls I made were not alive," said Miss Cuttenclip. "I usedto live near the castle of a great Sorceress named Glinda the Good, andshe saw my dolls and said they were very pretty. I told her I thoughtI would like them better if they were alive, and the next day theSorceress brought me a lot of magic paper. 'This is live paper,' shesaid, 'and all the dolls you cut out of it will be alive, and able tothink and to talk. When you have used it all up, come to me and I willgive you more.'
"Of course I was delighted with this present," continued MissCuttenclip, "and at once set to work and made several paper dolls,which, as soon as they were cut out, began to walk around and talk tome. But they were so thin that I found that any breeze would blow themover and scatter them dreadfully; so Glinda found this lonely place forme, where few people ever come. She built the wall to keep any windfrom blowing away my people, and told me I could build a paper villagehere and be its Queen. That is why I came here and settled down towork and started the village you now see. It was many years ago that Ibuilt the first houses, and I've kept pretty busy and made my villagegrow finely; and I need not tell you that I am very happy in my work."
"Many years ago!" exclaimed Aunt Em. "Why, how old are you, child?"
"I never keep track of the years," said Miss Cuttenclip, laughing."You see, I don't grow up at all, but stay just the same as I was whenfirst I came here. Perhaps I'm older even than you are, madam; but Icouldn't say for sure."
They looked at the lovely little girl wonderingly, and the Wizard asked:
"What happens to your paper village when it rains?"
"It does not rain here," replied Miss Cuttenclip. "Glinda keeps allthe rain storms away; so I never worry about my dolls getting wet. Butnow, if you will come with me, it will give me pleasure to show youover my paper kingdom. Of course you must go slowly and carefully, andavoid making any breeze."
They left the cottage and followed their guide through the variousstreets of the village. It was indeed an amazing place, when oneconsidered that it was all made with scissors, and the visitors werenot only greatly interested but full of admiration for the skill oflittle Miss Cuttenclip.
In one place a large group of especially nice paper dolls assembled togreet their Queen, whom it was easy to see they loved early. Thesedolls marched and danced before the visitors, and then they all wavedtheir paper handkerchiefs and sang in a sweet chorus a song called "TheFlag of Our Native Land."
At the conclusion of the song they ran up a handsome paper flag on atall flagpole, and all of the people of the village gathered around tocheer as loudly as they could--although, of course, their voices werenot especially strong.
Miss Cuttenclip was about to make her subjects a speech in reply tothis patriotic song, when the Shaggy Man happened to sneeze.
He was a very loud and powerful sneezer at any time, and he had triedso hard to hold in this sneeze that when it suddenly exploded theresult was terrible.
The paper dolls were mowed down by dozens, and flew and fluttered inwild confusion in every direction, tumbling this way and that andgetting more or less wrinkled and bent.
A wail of terror and grief came from the scattered throng, and MissCuttenclip exclaimed:
"Dear me! dear me!" and hurried at once to the rescue of her overturnedpeople.
"Oh, Shaggy Man! How could you?" asked Dorothy, reproachfully.
"I couldn't help it--really I couldn't," protested the Shaggy Man,looking quite ashamed. "And I had no idea it took so little to upsetthese paper dolls."
"So little!" said Dorothy. "Why, it was 'most as bad as a Kansascyclone." And then she helped Miss Cuttenclip rescue the paper folkand stand them on their feet again. Two of the cardboard houses hadalso tumbled over, and the little Queen said she would have to repairthem and paste them together before they could be lived in again.
And now, fearing they might do more damage to the flimsy paper people,they decided to go away. But first they thanked Miss Cuttenclip verywarmly for her courtesy and kindness to them.
"Any friend of Princess Ozma is always welcome here--unless hesneezes," said the Queen with a rather severe look at the Shaggy Man,who hung his head. "I like to have visitors admire my wonderfulvillage, and I hope you will call again."
Miss Cuttenclip herself led them to the door in the wall, and as theypassed along the street the paper dolls peeped at them half fearfullyfrom the doors and windows. Perhaps they will never forget the ShaggyMan's awful sneeze, and I am sure they were all glad to see the meatpeople go away.
11. How the General Met the First and Foremost
On leaving the Growleywogs General Guph had to recross the RippleLands, and he did not find it a pleasant thing to do. Perhaps havinghis whiskers pulled out one by one and being used as a pin-cushion forthe innocent amusement of a good natured jailer had not improved thequality of Guph's temper, for the old Nome raved and raged at therecollection of the wrongs he had suffered, and vowed to take vengeanceupon the Growleywogs after he had used them for his purposes and Oz hadbeen conquered. He went on in this furious way until he was halfacross the Ripple Land. Then he became seasick, and the rest of theway this naughty Nome was almost as miserable as he deserved to be.
But when he reached the plains again and the ground was firm under hisfeet he began to feel better, and instead of going back home he turneddirectly west. A squirrel, perched in a tree, saw him take this roadand called to him warningly: "Look out!" But he paid no attention. Aneagle paused in its flight through the air to look at him wonderinglyand say: "Look out!" But on he went.
No one can say that Guph was not brave, for he had determined to visitthose dangerous creatures the Phanfasms, who resided upon the very topof the dread Mountain of Phantastico. The Phanfasms were Erbs, and sodreaded by mortals and immortals alike that no one had been near theirmountain home for several thousand years. Yet General Guph hoped toinduce them to join in his proposed warfare against the good and happyOz people.
Guph knew very well that the Phanfasms would be almost as dangerous tothe Nomes as they would to the Ozites, but he thought himself so cleverthat he believed he could manage these strange creatures and make themobey him. And there was no doubt at all that if he could enlist theservices of the Phanfasms, their tremendous power, united to thestrength of the Growleywogs and the cunning of the Whimsies would doomthe Land of Oz to absolute destruction.
So the old Nome climbed the foothills and trudged along the wildmountain paths until he came to a big gully that encircled the Mountainof Phantastico and marked the boundary line of the dominion of thePhanfasms. This gully was about a third of the way up the mountain,and it was filled to the brim with red-hot molten lava in which swamfire-serpents and poisonous salamanders. The heat from this mass andits poisonous smell were both so unbearable that even birds hesitatedto fly over the gully, but circled around it. All living things keptaway from the mountain.
Now Guph had heard, during his long lifetime, many tales of thesedreaded Phanfasms; so he had heard of this barrier of melted lava, andalso he had been told that there was a narrow bridge that spanned it inone place. So he walked along the edge until he found the bridge. Itwas a single arch of gray stone, and lying flat upon the bridge was ascarlet alligator, seemingly fast asleep.
When Guph stumbled over the rocks in approaching the bridge thecreature opened its eyes, from which tiny flames shot in alldirections, and after looking at the intruder very wickedly the scarletalligator closed its eyelids again and lay still.
Guph saw there was no room for him to pass the alligator on the narrowbridge, so he called out to it:
"Good morning, friend. I don't wish to hurry you, but please tell meif you are coming down, or going up?"
"Neither," snapped the alligator, clicking its cruel jaws together.
The General hesitated.
"Are you likely to stay there long?" he asked.
"A few hundred years or so," said the alligator.
Guph softly rubbed the end of his nose and tried to think what to do.
"Do you know whether the First and Foremost Phanfasm of Phantastico isat home or not?" he presently inquired.
"I expect he is, seeing he is always at home," replied the alligator.
"Ah; who is that coming down the mountain?" asked the Nome, gazingupward.
The alligator turned to look over its shoulder, and at once Guph ran tothe bridge and leaped over the sentinel's back before it could turnback again. The scarlet monster made a snap at the Nome's left foot,but missed it by fully an inch.
"Ah ha!" laughed the General, who was now on the mountain path. "Ifooled you that time."
"So you did; and perhaps you fooled yourself," retorted the alligator."Go up the mountain, if you dare, and find out what the First andForemost will do to you!"
"I will," declared Guph, boldly; and on he went up the path.
At first the scene was wild enough, but gradually it grew more and moreawful in appearance. All the rocks had the shapes of frightful beingsand even the tree trunks were gnarled and twisted like serpents.
Suddenly there appeared before the Nome a man with the head of an owl.His body was hairy like that of an ape, and his only clothing was ascarlet scarf twisted around his waist. He bore a huge club in hishand and his round owl eyes blinked fiercely upon the intruder.
"What are you doing here?" he demanded, threatening Guph with his club.
"I've come to see the First and Foremost Phanfasm of Phantastico,"replied the General, who did not like the way this creature looked athim, but still was not afraid.
"Ah; you shall see him!" the man said, with a sneering laugh. "TheFirst and Foremost shall decide upon the best way to punish you."
"He will not punish me," returned Guph, calmly, "for I have come hereto do him and his people a rare favor. Lead on, fellow, and take medirectly to your master."
The owl-man raised his club with a threatening gesture.
"If you try to escape," he said, "beware--"
But here the General interrupted him.
"Spare your threats," said he, "and do not be impertinent, or I willhave you severely punished. Lead on, and keep silent!"
This Guph was really a clever rascal, and it seems a pity he was sobad, for in a good cause he might have accomplished much. He realizedthat he had put himself into a dangerous position by coming to thisdreadful mountain, but he also knew that if he showed fear he was lost.So he adopted a bold manner as his best defense. The wisdom of thisplan was soon evident, for the Phanfasm with the owl's head turned andled the way up the mountain.
At the very top was a level plain upon which were heaps of rock that atfirst glance seemed solid. But on looking closer Guph discovered thatthese rock heaps were dwellings, for each had an opening.
Not a person was to be seen outside the rock huts. All was silent.
The owl-man led the way among the groups of dwellings to one standingin the center. It seemed no better and no worse than any of theothers. Outside the entrance to this rock heap the guide gave a lowwail that sounded like "Lee-ow-ah!"
Suddenly there bounded from the opening another hairy man. This onewore the head of a bear. In his hand he bore a brass hoop. He glaredat the stranger in evident surprise.
"Why have you captured this foolish wanderer and brought him here?" hedemanded, addressing the owl-man.
"I did not capture him," was the answer. "He passed the scarletalligator and came here of his own free will and accord."
The First and Foremost looked at the General.
"Have you tired of life, then?" he asked.
"No indeed," answered Guph. "I am a Nome, and the Chief General ofKing Roquat the Red's great army of Nomes. I come of a long-livedrace, and I may say that I expect to live a long time yet. Sit down,you Phanfasms--if you can find a seat in this wild haunt--and listen towhat I have to say."
With all his knowledge and bravery General Guph did not know that thesteady glare from the bear eyes was reading his inmost thoughts assurely as if they had been put into words. He did not know that thesedespised rock heaps of the Phanfasms were merely deceptions to his owneyes, nor could he guess that he was standing in the midst of one ofthe most splendid and luxurious cities ever built by magic power. Allthat he saw was a barren waste of rock heaps, a hairy man with an owl'shead and another with a bear's head. The sorcery of the Phanfasmspermitted him to see no more.
Suddenly the First and Foremost swung his brass hoop and caught Gupharound the neck with it. The next instant, before the General couldthink what had happened to him, he was dragged inside the rock hut.Here, his eyes still blinded to realities, he perceived only a dimlight, by which the hut seemed as rough and rude inside as it wasoutside. Yet he had a strange feeling that many bright eyes werefastened upon him and that he stood in a vast and extensive hall.
The First and Foremost now laughed grimly and released his prisoner.
"If you have anything to say that is interesting," he remarked, "speakout, before I strangle you."
So Guph spoke out. He tried not to pay any attention to a strangerustling sound that he heard, as of an unseen multitude drawing near tolisten to his words. His eyes could see only the fierce bear-man, andto him he addressed his speech. First he told of his plan to conquerthe Land of Oz and plunder the country of its riches and enslave itspeople, who, being fairies, could not be killed. After relating allthis, and telling of the tunnel the Nome King was building, he said hehad come to ask the First and Foremost to join the Nomes, with his bandof terrible warriors, and help them to defeat the Oz people.
The General spoke very earnestly and impressively, but when he hadfinished the bear-man began to laugh as if much amused, and hislaughter seemed to be echoed by a chorus of merriment from an unseenmultitude. Then, for the first time, Guph began to feel a trifleworried.
"Who else has promised to help you?" finally asked the First andForemost.
"The Whimsies," replied the General.
Again the bear-headed Phanfasm laughed.
"Any others?" he inquired.
"Only the Growleywogs," said Guph.
This answer set the First and Foremost laughing anew.
"What share of the spoils am I to have?" was the next question.
"Anything you like, except King Roquat's Magic Belt," replied Guph.
At this the Phanfasm set up a roar of laughter, which had its echo inthe unseen chorus, and the bear-man seemed so amused that he actuallyrolled upon the ground and shouted with merriment.
"Oh, these blind and foolish Nomes!" he said. "How big they seem tothemselves and how small they really are!"
Suddenly he arose and seized Guph's neck with one hairy paw, dragginghim out of the hut into the open.
Here he gave a curious wailing cry, and, as if in answer, from all therocky huts on the mountain-top came flocking a horde of Phanfasms, allwith hairy bodies, but wearing heads of various animals, birds andreptiles. All were ferocious and repulsive-looking to the deceivedeyes of the Nome, and Guph could not repress a shudder of disgust as helooked upon them.
The First and Foremost slowly raised his arms, and in a twinkling hishairy skin fell from him and he appeared before the astonished Nome asa beautiful woman, clothed in a flowing gown of pink gauze. In herdark hair flowers were entwined, and her face was noble and calm.
At the same instant the entire band of Phanfasms was transformed into apack of howling wolves, running here and there as they snarled andshowed their ugly yellow fangs.
The woman now raised her arms, even as the man-bear had done, and in atwinkling the wolves became crawling lizards, while she herself changedinto a huge butterfly.
Guph had only time to cry out in fear and take a step backward to avoidthe lizards when another transformation occurred, and all returnedinstantly to the forms they had originally worn.
Then the First and Foremost, who had resumed his hairy body and bearhead, turned to the Nome and asked:
"Do you still demand our assistance?"
"More than ever," answered the General, firmly.
"Then tell me: what can you offer the Phanfasms that they have notalready?" inquired the First and Foremost.
Guph hesitated. He really did not know what to say. The Nome King'svaunted Magic Belt seemed a poor thing compared to the astonishingmagical powers of these people. Gold, jewels and slaves they mightsecure in any quantity without especial effort. He felt that he wasdealing with powers greatly beyond him. There was but one argumentthat might influence the Phanfasms, who were creatures of evil.
"Permit me to call your attention to the exquisite joy of making thehappy unhappy," said he at last. "Consider the pleasure of destroyinginnocent and harmless people."
"Ah! you have answered me," cried the First and Foremost. "For thatreason alone we will aid you. Go home, and tell your bandy-legged kingthat as soon as his tunnel is finished the Phanfasms will be with himand lead his legions to the conquest of Oz. The deadly desert alonehas kept us from destroying Oz long ago, and your underground tunnel isa clever thought. Go home, and prepare for our coming!"
Guph was very glad to be permitted to go with this promise. Theowl-man led him back down the mountain path and ordered the scarletalligator to crawl away and allow the Nome to cross the bridge insafety.
After the visitor had gone a brilliant and gorgeous city appeared uponthe mountain top, clearly visible to the eyes of the gaily dressedmultitude of Phanfasms that lived there. And the First and Foremost,beautifully arrayed, addressed the others in these words:
"It is time we went into the world and brought sorrow and dismay to itspeople. Too long have we remained for ourselves upon this mountaintop, for while we are thus secluded many nations have grown happy andprosperous, and the chief joy of the race of Phanfasms is to destroyhappiness. So I think it is lucky that this messenger from the Nomesarrived among us just now, to remind us that the opportunity has comefor us to make trouble. We will use King Roquat's tunnel to conquerthe Land of Oz. Then we will destroy the Whimsies, the Growleywogs andthe Nomes, and afterward go out to ravage and annoy and grieve thewhole world."
The multitude of evil Phanfasms eagerly applauded this plan, which theyfully approved.
I am told that the Erbs are the most powerful and merciless of all theevil spirits, and the Phanfasms of Phantastico belong to the race ofErbs.
12. How they Matched the Fuddles
Dorothy and her fellow travelers rode away from the Cuttenclip villageand followed the indistinct path as far as the sign-post. Here theytook the main road again and proceeded pleasantly through the prettyfarming country. When evening came they stopped at a dwelling and werejoyfully welcomed and given plenty to eat and good beds for the night.
Early next morning, however, they were up and eager to start, and aftera good breakfast they bade their host good-bye and climbed into the redwagon, to which the Sawhorse had been hitched all night. Being made ofwood, this horse never got tired nor cared to lie down. Dorothy wasnot quite sure whether he ever slept or not, but it was certain that henever did when anybody was around.
The weather is always beautiful in Oz, and this morning the air wascool and refreshing and the sunshine brilliant and delightful.
In about an hour they came to a place where another road branched off.There was a sign-post here which read:
THIS WAY TO FUDDLECUMJIG
"Oh, here is where we turn," said Dorothy, observing the sign.
"What! Are we going to Fuddlecumjig?" asked the Captain General.
"Yes; Ozma thought we might enjoy the Fuddles. They are said to bevery interesting," she replied.
"No one would suspect it from their name," said Aunt Em. "Who arethey, anyhow? More paper things?"
"I think not," answered Dorothy, laughing; "but I can't say 'zactly,Aunt Em, what they are. We'll find out when we get there."
"Perhaps the Wizard knows," suggested Uncle Henry.
"No; I've never been there before," said the Wizard. "But I've oftenheard of Fuddlecumjig and the Fuddles, who are said to be the mostpeculiar people in all the Land of Oz."
"In what way?" asked the Shaggy Man.
"I don't know, I'm sure," said the Wizard.
Just then, as they rode along the pretty green lane towardFuddlecumjig, they espied a kangaroo sitting by the roadside. The pooranimal had its face covered with both its front paws and was crying sobitterly that the tears coursed down its cheeks in two tiny streams andtrickled across the road, where they formed a pool in a small hollow.
The Sawhorse stopped short at this pitiful sight, and Dorothy criedout, with ready sympathy:
"What's the matter, Kangaroo?"
"Boo-hoo! Boo-hoo!" wailed the Kangaroo; "I've lost my mi--mi--mi--Oh,boo-hoo! Boo-hoo!"--
"Poor thing," said the Wizard, "she's lost her mister. It's probablyher husband, and he's dead."
"No, no, no!" sobbed the kangaroo. "It--it isn't that. I've lost mymi--mi--Oh, boo, boo-hoo!"
"I know," said the Shaggy Man; "she's lost her mirror."
"No; it's my mi--mi--mi--Boo-hoo! My mi--Oh, Boo-hoo!" and thekangaroo cried harder than ever.
"It must be her mince-pie," suggested Aunt Em.
"Or her milk-toast," proposed Uncle Henry.
"I've lost my mi--mi--mittens!" said the kangaroo, getting it out atlast.
"Oh!" cried the Yellow Hen, with a cackle of relief. "Why didn't yousay so before?"
"Boo-hoo! I--I--couldn't," answered the kangaroo.
"But, see here," said Dorothy, "you don't need mittens in this warmweather."
"Yes, indeed I do," replied the animal, stopping her sobs and removingher paws from her face to look at the little girl reproachfully. "Myhands will get all sunburned and tanned without my mittens, and I'veworn them so long that I'll probably catch cold without them."
"Nonsense!" said Dorothy. "I never heard of any kangaroo wearingmittens."
"Didn't you?" asked the animal, as if surprised.
"Never!" repeated the girl. "And you'll probably make yourself sick ifyou don't stop crying. Where do you live?"
"About two miles beyond Fuddlecumjig," was the answer. "GrandmotherGnit made me the mittens, and she's one of the Fuddles."
"Well, you'd better go home now, and perhaps the old lady will make youanother pair," suggested Dorothy. "We're on our way to Fuddlecumjig,and you may hop along beside us."
So they rode on, and the kangaroo hopped beside the red wagon andseemed quickly to have forgotten her loss. By and by the Wizard saidto the animal:
"Are the Fuddles nice people?"
"Oh, very nice," answered the kangaroo; "that is, when they're properlyput together. But they get dreadfully scattered and mixed up, attimes, and then you can't do anything with them."
"What do you mean by their getting scattered?" inquired Dorothy.
"Why, they're made in a good many small pieces," explained thekangaroo; "and whenever any stranger comes near them they have a habitof falling apart and scattering themselves around. That's when theyget so dreadfully mixed, and it's a hard puzzle to put them togetheragain."
"Who usually puts them together?" asked Omby Amby.
"Any one who is able to match the pieces. I sometimes put GrandmotherGnit together myself, because I know her so well I can tell every piecethat belongs to her. Then, when she's all matched, she knits for me,and that's how she made my mittens. But it took a good many days hardknitting, and I had to put Grandmother together a good many times,because every time I came near, she'd scatter herself."
"I should think she would get used to your coming, and not be afraid,"said Dorothy.
"It isn't that," replied the kangaroo. "They're not a bit afraid, whenthey're put together, and usually they're very jolly and pleasant.It's just a habit they have, to scatter themselves, and if they didn'tdo it they wouldn't be Fuddles."
The travelers thought upon this quite seriously for a time, while theSawhorse continued to carry them rapidly forward. Then Aunt Emremarked:
"I don't see much use our visitin' these Fuddles. If we find themscattered, all we can do is to sweep 'em up, and then go about ourbusiness."
"Oh, I b'lieve we'd better go on," replied Dorothy. "I'm gettinghungry, and we must try to get some luncheon at Fuddlecumjig. Perhapsthe food won't be scattered as badly as the people."
"You'll find plenty to eat there," declared the kangaroo, hopping alongin big bounds because the Sawhorse was going so fast; "and they have afine cook, too, if you can manage to put him together. There's thetown now--just ahead of us!"
They looked ahead and saw a group of very pretty houses standing in agreen field a little apart from the main road.
"Some Munchkins came here a few days ago and matched a lot of peopletogether," said the kangaroo. "I think they are together yet, and ifyou go softly, without making any noise, perhaps they won't scatter."
"Let's try it," suggested the Wizard.
So they stopped the Sawhorse and got out of the wagon, and, afterbidding good bye to the kangaroo, who hopped away home, they enteredthe field and very cautiously approached the group of houses.
So silently did they move that soon they saw through the windows of thehouses, people moving around, while others were passing to and fro inthe yards between the buildings. They seemed much like other peoplefrom a distance, and apparently they did not notice the little party soquietly approaching.
They had almost reached the nearest house when Toto saw a large beetlecrossing the path and barked loudly at it. Instantly a wild clatterwas heard from the houses and yards. Dorothy thought it sounded like asudden hailstorm, and the visitors, knowing that caution was no longernecessary, hurried forward to see what had happened.
After the clatter an intense stillness reigned in the town. Thestrangers entered the first house they came to, which was also thelargest, and found the floor strewn with pieces of the people who livedthere. They looked much like fragments of wood neatly painted, andwere of all sorts of curious and fantastic shapes, no two pieces beingin any way alike.
They picked up some of these pieces and looked at them carefully. Onone which Dorothy held was an eye, which looked at her pleasantly butwith an interested expression, as if it wondered what she was going todo with it. Quite near by she discovered and picked up a nose, and bymatching the two pieces together found that they were part of a face.
"If I could find the mouth," she said, "this Fuddle might be able totalk, and tell us what to do next."
"Then let us find it," replied the Wizard, and so all got down on theirhands and knees and began examining the scattered pieces.
"I've found it!" cried the Shaggy Man, and ran to Dorothy with aqueer-shaped piece that had a mouth on it. But when they tried to fitit to the eye and nose they found the parts wouldn't match together.
"That mouth belongs to some other person," said Dorothy. "You see weneed a curve here and a point there, to make it fit the face."
"Well, it must be here some place," declared the Wizard; "so if wesearch long enough we shall find it."
Dorothy fitted an ear on next, and the ear had a little patch of redhair above it. So while the others were searching for the mouth shehunted for pieces with red hair, and found several of them which, whenmatched to the other pieces, formed the top of a man's head. She hadalso found the other eye and the ear by the time Omby Amby in a farcorner discovered the mouth. When the face was thus completed, all theparts joined together with a nicety that was astonishing.
"Why, it's like a picture puzzle!" exclaimed the little girl. "Let'sfind the rest of him, and get him all together."
"What's the rest of him like?" asked the Wizard. "Here are some piecesof blue legs and green arms, but I don't know whether they are his ornot."
"Look for a white shirt and a white apron," said the head which hadbeen put together, speaking in a rather faint voice. "I'm the cook."
"Oh, thank you," said Dorothy. "It's lucky we started you first, forI'm hungry, and you can be cooking something for us to eat while wematch the other folks together."
It was not so very difficult, now that they had a hint as to how theman was dressed, to find the other pieces belonging to him, and as allof them now worked on the cook, trying piece after piece to see if itwould fit, they finally had the cook set up complete.
When he was finished he made them a low bow and said:
"I will go at once to the kitchen to prepare your dinner. You willfind it something of a job to get all the Fuddles together, so I adviseyou to begin on the Lord High Chigglewitz, whose first name is Larry.He's a bald-headed fat man and is dressed in a blue coat with brassbuttons, a pink vest and drab breeches. A piece of his left knee ismissing, having been lost years ago when he scattered himself toocarelessly. That makes him limp a little, but he gets along very wellwith half a knee. As he is the chief personage in this town ofFuddlecumjig, he will be able to welcome you and assist you with theothers. So it will be best to work on him while I'm getting yourdinner."
"We will," said the Wizard; "and thank you very much, Cook, for thesuggestion."
Aunt Em was the first to discover a piece of the Lord High Chigglewitz.
"It seems to me like a fool business, this matching folks together,"she remarked; "but as we haven't anything to do till dinner's ready, wemay as well get rid of some of this rubbish. Here, Henry, get busy andlook for Larry's bald head. I've got his pink vest, all right."
They worked with eager interest, and Billina proved a great help tothem. The Yellow Hen had sharp eyes and could put her head close tothe various pieces that lay scattered around. She would examine theLord High Chigglewitz and see which piece of him was next needed, andthen hunt around until she found it. So before an hour had passed oldLarry was standing complete before them.
"I congratulate you, my friends," he said, speaking in a cheerfulvoice. "You are certainly the cleverest people who ever visited us. Iwas never matched together so quickly in my life. I'm considered agreat puzzle, usually."
"Well," said Dorothy, "there used to be a picture puzzle craze inKansas, and so I've had some 'sperience matching puzzles. But thepictures were flat, while you are round, and that makes you harder tofigure out."
"Thank you, my dear," replied old Larry, greatly pleased. "I feelhighly complimented. Were I not a really good puzzle, there would beno object in my scattering myself."
"Why do you do it?" asked Aunt Em, severely. "Why don't you behaveyourself, and stay put together?"
The Lord High Chigglewitz seemed annoyed by this speech; but hereplied, politely:
"Madam, you have perhaps noticed that every person has somepeculiarity. Mine is to scatter myself. What your own peculiarity isI will not venture to say; but I shall never find fault with you,whatever you do."
"Now you've got your diploma, Em," said Uncle Henry, with a laugh, "andI'm glad of it. This is a queer country, and we may as well takepeople as we find them."
"If we did, we'd leave these folks scattered," she returned, and thisretort made everybody laugh good-naturedly.
Just then Omby Amby found a hand with a knitting needle in it, and theydecided to put Grandmother Gnit together. She proved an easier puzzlethan old Larry, and when she was completed they found her a pleasantold lady who welcomed them cordially. Dorothy told her how thekangaroo had lost her mittens, and Grandmother Gnit promised to set towork at once and make the poor animal another pair.
Then the cook came to call them to dinner, and they found an invitingmeal prepared for them. The Lord High Chigglewitz sat at the head ofthe table and Grandmother Gnit at the foot, and the guests had a merrytime and thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
After dinner they went out into the yard and matched several otherpeople together, and this work was so interesting that they might havespent the entire day at Fuddlecumjig had not the Wizard suggested thatthey resume their journey.
"But I don't like to leave all these poor people scattered," saidDorothy, undecided what to do.
"Oh, don't mind us, my dear," returned old Larry. "Every day or sosome of the Gillikins, or Munchkins, or Winkies come here to amusethemselves by matching us together, so there will be no harm in leavingthese pieces where they are for a time. But I hope you will visit usagain, and if you do you will always be welcome, I assure you."
"Don't you ever match each other?" she inquired.
"Never; for we are no puzzles to ourselves, and so there wouldn't beany fun in it."
They now said goodbye to the queer Fuddles and got into their wagon tocontinue their journey.
"Those are certainly strange people," remarked Aunt Em, thoughtfully,as they drove away from Fuddlecumjig, "but I really can't see what usethey are, at all."
"Why, they amused us all for several hours," replied the Wizard. "Thatis being of use to us, I'm sure."
"I think they're more fun than playing solitaire or mumbletypeg,"declared Uncle Henry, soberly. "For my part, I'm glad we visited theFuddles."
13. How the General Talked to the King
When General Guph returned to the cavern of the Nome King his Majestyasked:
"Well, what luck? Will the Whimsies join us?"
"They will," answered the General. "They will fight for us with alltheir strength and cunning."
"Good!" exclaimed the King. "What reward did you promise them?"
"Your Majesty is to use the Magic Belt to give each Whimsie a large,fine head, in place of the small one he is now obliged to wear."
"I agree to that," said the King. "This is good news, Guph, and itmakes me feel more certain of the conquest of Oz."
"But I have other news for you," announced the General.
"Good or bad?"
"Good, your Majesty."
"Then I will hear it," said the King, with interest.
"The Growleywogs will join us."
"No!" cried the astonished King.
"Yes, indeed," said the General. "I have their promise."
"But what reward do they demand?" inquired the King, suspiciously, forhe knew how greedy the Growleywogs were.
"They are to take a few of the Oz people for their slaves," repliedGuph. He did not think it necessary to tell Roquat that theGrowleywogs demanded twenty thousand slaves. It would be time enoughfor that when Oz was conquered.
"A very reasonable request, I'm sure," remarked the King. "I mustcongratulate you, Guph, upon the wonderful success of your journey."
"But that is not all," said the General, proudly.
The King seemed astonished. "Speak out, sir!" he commanded.
"I have seen the First and Foremost Phanfasm of the Mountain ofPhantastico, and he will bring his people to assist us."
"What!" cried the King. "The Phanfasms! You don't mean it, Guph!"
"It is true," declared the General, proudly.
The King became thoughtful, and his brows wrinkled.
"I'm afraid, Guph," he said rather anxiously, "that the First andForemost may prove as dangerous to us as to the Oz people. If he andhis terrible band come down from the mountain they may take the notionto conquer the Nomes!"
"Pah! That is a foolish idea," retorted Guph, irritably, but he knewin his heart that the King was right. "The First and Foremost is aparticular friend of mine, and will do us no harm. Why, when I wasthere, he even invited me into his house."
The General neglected to tell the King how he had been jerked into thehut of the First and Foremost by means of the brass hoop. So Roquatthe Red looked at his General admiringly and said:
"You are a wonderful Nome, Guph. I'm sorry I did not make you myGeneral before. But what reward did the First and Foremost demand?"
"Nothing at all," answered Guph. "Even the Magic Belt itself could notadd to his powers of sorcery. All the Phanfasms wish is to destroy theOz people, who are good and happy. This pleasure will amply repay themfor assisting us."
"When will they come?" asked Roquat, half fearfully.
"When the tunnel is completed," said the General.
"We are nearly halfway under the desert now," announced the King; "andthat is fast work, because the tunnel has to be drilled through solidrock. But after we have passed the desert it will not take us long toextend the tunnel to the walls of the Emerald City."
"Well, whenever you are ready, we shall be joined by the Whimsies, theGrowleywogs and the Phanfasms," said Guph; "so the conquest of Oz isassured without a doubt."
Again, the King seemed thoughtful.
"I'm almost sorry we did not undertake the conquest alone," said he."All of these allies are dangerous people, and they may demand morethan you have promised them. It might have been better to haveconquered Oz without any outside assistance."
"We could not do it," said the General, positively.
"Why not, Guph?"
"You know very well. You have had one experience with the Oz people,and they defeated you."
"That was because they rolled eggs at us," replied the King, with ashudder. "My Nomes cannot stand eggs, any more than I can myself.They are poison to all who live underground."
"That is true enough," agreed Guph.
"But we might have taken the Oz people by surprise, and conquered thembefore they had a chance to get any eggs. Our former defeat was due tothe fact that the girl Dorothy had a Yellow Hen with her. I do notknow what ever became of that hen, but I believe there are no hens atall in the Land of Oz, and so there could be no eggs there."
"On the contrary," said Guph, "there are now hundreds of chickens inOz, and they lay heaps of those dangerous eggs. I met a goshawk on myway home, and the bird informed me that he had lately been to Oz tocapture and devour some of the young chickens. But they are protectedby magic, so the hawk did not get a single one of them."
"That is a very bad report," said the King, nervously. "Very bad,indeed. My Nomes are willing to fight, but they simply can't facehen's eggs--and I don't blame them."
"They won't need to face them," replied Guph. "I'm afraid of eggsmyself, and don't propose to take any chances of being poisoned bythem. My plan is to send the Whimsies through the tunnel first, andthen the Growleywogs and the Phanfasms. By the time we Nomes get therethe eggs will all be used up, and we may then pursue and capture theinhabitants at our leisure."
"Perhaps you are right," returned the King, with a dismal sigh. "But Iwant it distinctly understood that I claim Ozma and Dorothy as my ownprisoners. They are rather nice girls, and I do not intend to let anyof those dreadful creatures hurt them, or make them their slaves. WhenI have captured them I will bring them here and transform them intochina ornaments to stand on my mantle. They will look verypretty--Dorothy on one end of the mantle and Ozma on the other--and Ishall take great care to see they are not broken when the maids dustthem."
"Very well, your Majesty. Do what you will with the girls for all Icare. Now that our plans are arranged, and we have the three mostpowerful bands of evil spirits in the world to assist us, let us makehaste to get the tunnel finished as soon as possible."
"It will be ready in three days," promised the King, and hurried awayto inspect the work and see that the Nomes kept busy.
14. How the Wizard Practiced Sorcery
"Where next?" asked the Wizard when they had left the town ofFuddlecumjig and the Sawhorse had started back along the road.
"Why, Ozma laid out this trip," replied Dorothy, "and she 'vised us tosee the Rigmaroles next, and then visit the Tin Woodman."
"That sounds good," said the Wizard. "But what road do we take to getto the Rigmaroles?"
"I don't know, 'zactly," returned the little girl; "but it must besomewhere just southwest from here."
"Then why need we go way back to the crossroads?" asked the Shaggy Man."We might save a lot of time by branching off here."
"There isn't any path," asserted Uncle Henry.
"Then we'd better go back to the signposts, and make sure of our way,"decided Dorothy.
But after they had gone a short distance farther the Sawhorse, who hadoverheard their conversation, stopped and said:
"Here is a path."
Sure enough, a dim path seemed to branch off from the road they wereon, and it led across pretty green meadows and past leafy groves,straight toward the southwest.
"That looks like a good path," said Omby Amby. "Why not try it?"
"All right," answered Dorothy. "I'm anxious to see what the Rigmarolesare like, and this path ought to take us there the quickest way."
No one made any objection to this plan, so the Sawhorse turned into thepath, which proved to be nearly as good as the one they had taken toget to the Fuddles. As first they passed a few retired farm houses,but soon these scattered dwellings were left behind and only themeadows and the trees were before them. But they rode along incheerful contentment, and Aunt Em got into an argument with Billinaabout the proper way to raise chickens.
"I do not care to contradict you," said the Yellow Hen, with dignity,"but I have an idea I know more about chickens than human beings do."
"Pshaw!" replied Aunt Em. "I've raised chickens for nearly fortyyears, Billina, and I know you've got to starve 'em to make 'em laylots of eggs, and stuff 'em if you want good broilers."
"Broilers!" exclaimed Billina, in horror. "Broil my chickens!"
"Why, that's what they're for, ain't it?" asked Aunt Em, astonished.
"No, Aunt, not in Oz," said Dorothy. "People do not eat chickens here.You see, Billina was the first hen that was ever seen in this country,and I brought her here myself. Everybody liked her an' respected her,so the Oz people wouldn't any more eat her chickens than they would eatBillina."
"Well, I declare," gasped Aunt Em. "How about the eggs?"
"Oh, if we have more eggs than we want to hatch, we allow people to eatthem," said Billina. "Indeed, I am very glad the Oz folks like oureggs, for otherwise they would spoil."
"This certainly is a queer country," sighed Aunt Em.
"Excuse me," called the Sawhorse, "the path has ended and I'd like toknow which way to go."
They looked around and sure enough there was no path to be seen.
"Well," said Dorothy, "we're going southwest, and it seems just as easyto follow that direction without a path as with one."
"Certainly," answered the Sawhorse. "It is not hard to draw the wagonover the meadow. I only want to know where to go."
"There's a forest over there across the prairie," said the Wizard, "andit lies in the direction we are going. Make straight for the forest,Sawhorse, and you're bound to go right."
So the wooden animal trotted on again and the meadow grass was so softunder the wheels that it made easy riding. But Dorothy was a littleuneasy at losing the path, because now there was nothing to guide them.
No houses were to be seen at all, so they could not ask their way ofany farmer; and although the Land of Oz was always beautiful, whereverone might go, this part of the country was strange to all the party.
"Perhaps we're lost," suggested Aunt Em, after they had proceeded quitea way in silence.
"Never mind," said the Shaggy Man; "I've been lost many a time--and sohas Dorothy--and we've always been found again."
"But we may get hungry," remarked Omby Amby. "That is the worst ofgetting lost in a place where there are no houses near."
"We had a good dinner at the Fuddle town," said Uncle Henry, "and thatwill keep us from starving to death for a long time."
"No one ever starved to death in Oz," declared Dorothy, positively;"but people may get pretty hungry sometimes."
The Wizard said nothing, and he did not seem especially anxious. TheSawhorse was trotting along briskly, yet the forest seemed farther awaythan they had thought when they first saw it. So it was nearly sundownwhen they finally came to the trees; but now they found themselves in amost beautiful spot, the wide-spreading trees being covered withflowering vines and having soft mosses underneath them. "This will bea good place to camp," said the Wizard, as the Sawhorse stopped forfurther instructions.
"Camp!" they all echoed.
"Certainly," asserted the Wizard. "It will be dark before very longand we cannot travel through this forest at night. So let us make acamp here, and have some supper, and sleep until daylight comes again."
They all looked at the little man in astonishment, and Aunt Em said,with a sniff:
"A pretty camp we'll have, I must say! I suppose you intend us tosleep under the wagon."
"And chew grass for our supper," added the Shaggy Man, laughing.
But Dorothy seemed to have no doubts and was quite cheerful
"It's lucky we have the wonderful Wizard with us," she said; "becausehe can do 'most anything he wants to."
"Oh, yes; I forgot we had a Wizard," said Uncle Henry, looking at thelittle man curiously.
"I didn't," chirped Billina, contentedly.
The Wizard smiled and climbed out of the wagon, and all the othersfollowed him.
"In order to camp," said he, "the first thing we need is tents. Willsome one please lend me a handkerchief?"
The Shaggy Man offered him one, and Aunt Em another. He took them bothand laid them carefully upon the grass near to the edge of the forest.Then he laid his own handkerchief down, too, and standing a little backfrom them he waved his left hand toward the handkerchiefs and said:
"Tents of canvas, white as snow, Let me see how fast you grow!"
Then, lo and behold! the handkerchiefs became tiny tents, and as thetravelers looked at them the tents grew bigger and bigger until in afew minutes each one was large enough to contain the entire party.
"This," said the Wizard, pointing to the first tent, "is for theaccommodation of the ladies. Dorothy, you and your Aunt may stepinside and take off your things."
Every one ran to look inside the tent, and they saw two pretty whitebeds, all ready for Dorothy and Aunt Em, and a silver roost forBillina. Rugs were spread upon the grassy floor and some camp chairsand a table completed the furniture.
"Well, well, well! This beats anything I ever saw or heard of!"exclaimed Aunt Em, and she glanced at the Wizard almost fearfully, asif he might be dangerous because of his great powers.
"Oh, Mr. Wizard! How did you manage to do it?" asked Dorothy.
"It's a trick Glinda the Sorceress taught me, and it is much bettermagic than I used to practice in Omaha, or when I first came to Oz," heanswered. "When the good Glinda found I was to live in the EmeraldCity always, she promised to help me, because she said the Wizard of Ozought really to be a clever Wizard, and not a humbug. So we have beenmuch together and I am learning so fast that I expect to be able toaccomplish some really wonderful things in time."
"You've done it now!" declared Dorothy. "These tents are justwonderful!"
"But come and see the men's tent," said the Wizard. So they went tothe second tent, which had shaggy edges because it has been made fromthe Shaggy Man's handkerchief, and found that completely furnishedalso. It contained four neat beds for Uncle Henry, Omby Amby, theShaggy Man and the Wizard. Also there was a soft rug for Toto to lieupon.
"The third tent," explained the Wizard, "is our dining room andkitchen."
They visited that next, and found a table and dishes in the diningtent, with plenty of those things necessary to use in cooking. TheWizard carried out a big kettle and set it swinging on a crossbarbefore the tent. While he was doing this Omby Amby and the Shaggy Manbrought a supply of twigs from the forest and then they built a fireunderneath the kettle.
"Now, Dorothy," said the Wizard, smiling, "I expect you to cook oursupper."
"But there is nothing in the kettle," she cried.
"Are you sure?" inquired the Wizard.
"I didn't see anything put in, and I'm almost sure it was empty whenyou brought it out," she replied.
"Nevertheless," said the little man, winking slyly at Uncle Henry, "youwill do well to watch our supper, my dear, and see that it doesn't boilover."
Then the men took some pails and went into the forest to search for aspring of water, and while they were gone Aunt Em said to Dorothy:
"I believe the Wizard is fooling us. I saw the kettle myself, and whenhe hung it over the fire there wasn't a thing in it but air."
"Don't worry," remarked Billina, confidently, as she nestled in thegrass before the fire. "You'll find something in the kettle when it'staken off--and it won't be poor, innocent chickens, either."
"Your hen has very bad manners, Dorothy," said Aunt Em, lookingsomewhat disdainfully at Billina. "It seems too bad she ever learnedhow to talk."
There might have been another unpleasant quarrel between Aunt Em andBillina had not the men returned just then with their pails filled withclear, sparkling water. The Wizard told Dorothy that she was a goodcook and he believed their supper was ready.
So Uncle Henry lifted the kettle from the fire and poured its contentsinto a big platter which the Wizard held for him. The platter wasfairly heaped with a fine stew, smoking hot, with many kinds ofvegetables and dumplings and a rich, delicious gravy.
The Wizard triumphantly placed the platter upon the table in the diningtent and then they all sat down in camp chairs to the feast.
There were several other dishes on the table, all carefully covered,and when the time came to remove these covers they found bread andbutter, cakes, cheese, pickles and fruits--including some of theluscious strawberries of Oz.
No one ventured to ask a question as to how these things came there.They contented themselves by eating heartily the good things provided,and Toto and Billina had their full share, you may be sure. After themeal was over, Aunt Em whispered to Dorothy:
"That may have been magic food, my dear, and for that reason perhaps itwon't be very nourishing; but I'm willing to say it tasted as good asanything I ever et." Then she added, in a louder voice: "Who's goingto do the dishes?"
"No one, madam," answered the Wizard. "The dishes have 'done'themselves."
"La sakes!" ejaculated the good lady, holding up her hands inamazement. For, sure enough, when she looked at the dishes they had amoment before left upon the table, she found them all washed and driedand piled up into neat stacks.
15. How Dorothy Happened to Get Lost
It was a beautiful evening, so they drew their camp chairs in a circlebefore one of the tents and began to tell stories to amuse themselvesand pass away the time before they went to bed.
Pretty soon a zebra was seen coming out of the forest, and he trottedstraight up to them and said politely:
"Good evening, people."
The zebra was a sleek little animal and had a slender head, a stubbymane and a paint-brush tail--very like a donkey's. His neatly shapedwhite body was covered with regular bars of dark brown, and his hoofswere delicate as those of a deer.
"Good evening, friend Zebra," said Omby Amby, in reply to thecreature's greeting. "Can we do anything for you?"
"Yes," answered the zebra. "I should like you to settle a dispute thathas long been a bother to me, as to whether there is more water or landin the world."
"Who are you disputing with?" asked the Wizard.
"With a soft-shell crab," said the zebra. "He lives in a pool where Igo to drink every day, and he is a very impertinent crab, I assure you.I have told him many times that the land is much greater in extent thanthe water, but he will not be convinced. Even this very evening, whenI told him he was an insignificant creature who lived in a small pool,he asserted that the water was greater and more important than theland. So, seeing your camp, I decided to ask you to settle the disputefor once and all, that I may not be further annoyed by this ignorantcrab."
When they had listened to this explanation Dorothy inquired:
"Where is the soft-shell crab?"
"Not far away," replied the zebra. "If you will agree to judge betweenus I will run and get him."
"Run along, then," said the little girl.
So the animal pranced into the forest and soon came trotting back tothem. When he drew near they found a soft-shell crab clinging fast tothe stiff hair of the zebra's head, where it held on by one claw.
"Now then, Mr. Crab," said the zebra, "here are the people I told youabout; and they know more than you do, who lives in a pool, and morethan I do, who lives in a forest. For they have been travelers allover the world, and know every part of it."
"There is more of the world than Oz," declared the crab, in a stubbornvoice.
"That is true," said Dorothy; "but I used to live in Kansas, in theUnited States, and I've been to California and to Australia and so hasUncle Henry."
"For my part," added the Shaggy Man, "I've been to Mexico and Bostonand many other foreign countries."
"And I," said the Wizard, "have been to Europe and Ireland."
"So you see," continued the zebra, addressing the crab, "here arepeople of real consequence, who know what they are talking about."
"Then they know there's more water in the world than there is land,"asserted the crab, in a shrill, petulant voice.
"They know you are wrong to make such an absurd statement, and theywill probably think you are a lobster instead of a crab," retorted theanimal.
At this taunt the crab reached out its other claw and seized thezebra's ear, and the creature gave a cry of pain and began prancing upand down, trying to shake off the crab, which clung fast.
"Stop pinching!" cried the zebra. "You promised not to pinch if Iwould carry you here!"
"And you promised to treat me respectfully," said the crab, letting gothe ear.
"Well, haven't I?" demanded the zebra.
"No; you called me a lobster," said the crab.
"Ladies and gentlemen," continued the zebra, "please pardon my poorfriend, because he is ignorant and stupid, and does not understand.Also the pinch of his claw is very annoying. So pray tell him that theworld contains more land than water, and when he has heard yourjudgment I will carry him back and dump him into his pool, where I hopehe will be more modest in the future."
"But we cannot tell him that," said Dorothy, gravely, "because it wouldnot be true."
"What!" exclaimed the zebra, in astonishment; "do I hear you aright?"
"The soft-shell crab is correct," declared the Wizard. "There isconsiderably more water than there is land in the world."
"Impossible!" protested the zebra. "Why, I can run for days upon theland, and find but little water."
"Did you ever see an ocean?" asked Dorothy.
"Never," admitted the zebra. "There is no such thing as an ocean inthe Land of Oz."
"Well, there are several oceans in the world," said Dorothy, "andpeople sail in ships upon these oceans for weeks and weeks, and neversee a bit of land at all. And the joggerfys will tell you that all theoceans put together are bigger than all the land put together."
At this the crab began laughing in queer chuckles that reminded Dorothyof the way Billina sometimes cackled.
"NOW will you give up, Mr. Zebra?" it cried, jeeringly; "now will yougive up?"
The zebra seemed much humbled.
"Of course I cannot read geographys," he said.
"You could take one of the Wizard's School Pills," suggested Billina,"and that would make you learned and wise without studying."
The crab began laughing again, which so provoked the zebra that hetried to shake the little creature off. This resulted in moreear-pinching, and finally Dorothy told them that if they could notbehave they must go back to the forest.
"I'm sorry I asked you to decide this question," said the zebra,crossly. "So long as neither of us could prove we were right we quiteenjoyed the dispute; but now I can never drink at that pool againwithout the soft-shell crab laughing at me. So I must find anotherdrinking place."
"Do! Do, you ignoramus!" shouted the crab, as loudly as his littlevoice would carry. "Rile some other pool with your clumsy hoofs, andlet your betters alone after this!"
Then the zebra trotted back to the forest, bearing the crab with him,and disappeared amid the gloom of the trees. And as it was now gettingdark the travelers said good night to one another and went to bed.
Dorothy awoke just as the light was beginning to get strong nextmorning, and not caring to sleep any later she quietly got out of bed,dressed herself, and left the tent where Aunt Em was yet peacefullyslumbering.
Outside she noticed Billina busily pecking around to secure bugs orother food for breakfast, but none of the men in the other tent seemedawake. So the little girl decided to take a walk in the woods and tryto discover some path or road that they might follow when they againstarted upon their journey.
She had reached the edge of the forest when the Yellow Hen camefluttering along and asked where she was going.
"Just to take a walk, Billina; and maybe I'll find some path," saidDorothy.
"Then I'll go along," decided Billina, and scarcely had she spoken whenToto ran up and joined them.
Toto and the Yellow Hen had become quite friendly by this time,although at first they did not get along well together. Billina hadbeen rather suspicious of dogs, and Toto had had an idea that it wasevery dog's duty to chase a hen on sight. But Dorothy had talked tothem and scolded them for not being agreeable to one another until theygrew better acquainted and became friends.
I won't say they loved each other dearly, but at least they had stoppedquarreling and now managed to get on together very well.
The day was growing lighter every minute and driving the black shadowsout of the forest; so Dorothy found it very pleasant walking under thetrees. She went some distance in one direction, but not finding apath, presently turned in a different direction. There was no pathhere, either, although she advanced quite a way into the forest,winding here and there among the trees and peering through the bushesin an endeavor to find some beaten track.
"I think we'd better go back," suggested the Yellow Hen, after a time."The people will all be up by this time and breakfast will be ready."
"Very well," agreed Dorothy. "Let's see--the camp must be over thisway."
She had probably made a mistake about that, for after they had gone farenough to have reached the camp they still found themselves in thethick of the woods. So the little girl stopped short and looked aroundher, and Toto glanced up into her face with his bright little eyes andwagged his tail as if he knew something was wrong. He couldn't tellmuch about direction himself, because he had spent his time prowlingamong the bushes and running here and there; nor had Billina paid muchattention to where they were going, being interested in picking bugsfrom the moss as they passed along. The Yellow Hen now turned one eyeup toward the little girl and asked:
"Have you forgotten where the camp is, Dorothy?"
"Yes," she admitted; "have you, Billina?"
"I didn't try to remember," returned Billina. "I'd no idea you wouldget lost, Dorothy."
"It's the thing we don't expect, Billina, that usually happens,"observed the girl, thoughtfully. "But it's no use standing here.Let's go in that direction," pointing a finger at random. "It may bewe'll get out of the forest over there."
So on they went again, but this way the trees were closer together, andthe vines were so tangled that often they tripped Dorothy up.
Suddenly a voice cried sharply:
At first, Dorothy could see nothing, although she looked around verycarefully. But Billina exclaimed:
"Well, I declare!"
"What is it?" asked the little girl: for Toto began barking atsomething, and following his gaze she discovered what it was.
A row of spoons had surrounded the three, and these spoons stoodstraight up on their handles and carried swords and muskets. Theirfaces were outlined in the polished bowls and they looked very sternand severe.
Dorothy laughed at the queer things.
"Who are you?" she asked.
"We're the Spoon Brigade," said one.
"In the service of his Majesty King Kleaver," said another.
"And you are our prisoners," said a third.
Dorothy sat down on an old stump and looked at them, her eyes twinklingwith amusement.
"What would happen," she inquired, "if I should set my dog on yourBrigade?"
"He would die," replied one of the spoons, sharply. "One shot from ourdeadly muskets would kill him, big as he is."
"Don't risk it, Dorothy," advised the Yellow Hen. "Remember this is afairy country, yet none of us three happens to be a fairy."
Dorothy grew sober at this.
"P'raps you're right, Billina," she answered. "But how funny it is, tobe captured by a lot of spoons!"
"I do not see anything very funny about it," declared a spoon. "We'rethe regular military brigade of the kingdom."
"What kingdom?" she asked.
"Utensia," said he.
"I never heard of it before," asserted Dorothy. Then she addedthoughtfully, "I don't believe Ozma ever heard of Utensia, either.Tell me, are you not subjects of Ozma of Oz?"
"We have never heard of her," retorted a spoon. "We are subjects ofKing Kleaver, and obey only his orders, which are to bring allprisoners to him as soon as they are captured. So step lively, mygirl, and march with us, or we may be tempted to cut off a few of yourtoes with our swords."
This threat made Dorothy laugh again. She did not believe she was inany danger; but here was a new and interesting adventure, so she waswilling to be taken to Utensia that she might see what King Kleaver'skingdom was like.
16. How Dorothy Visited Utensia
There must have been from six to eight dozen spoons in the Brigade, andthey marched away in the shape of a hollow square, with Dorothy,Billina and Toto in the center of the square. Before they had gonevery far Toto knocked over one of the spoons by wagging his tail, andthen the Captain of the Spoons told the little dog to be more careful,or he would be punished. So Toto was careful, and the Spoon Brigademoved along with astonishing swiftness, while Dorothy really had towalk fast to keep up with it.
By and by they left the woods and entered a big clearing, in which wasthe Kingdom of Utensia.
Standing all around the clearing were a good many cookstoves, rangesand grills, of all sizes and shapes, and besides these there wereseveral kitchen cabinets and cupboards and a few kitchen tables. Thesethings were crowded with utensils of all sorts: frying pans, saucepans, kettles, forks, knives, basting and soup spoons, nutmeg graters,sifters, colanders, meat saws, flat irons, rolling pins and many otherthings of a like nature.
When the Spoon Brigade appeared with the prisoners a wild shout aroseand many of the utensils hopped off their stoves or their benches andran crowding around Dorothy and the hen and the dog.
"Stand back!" cried the Captain, sternly, and he led his captivesthrough the curious throng until they came before a big range thatstood in the center of the clearing. Beside this range was a butcherblock upon which lay a great cleaver with a keen edge. It rested uponthe flat of its back, its legs were crossed and it was smoking a longpipe.
"Wake up, your Majesty," said the Captain. "Here are prisoners."
Hearing this, King Kleaver sat up and looked at Dorothy sharply.
"Gristle and fat!" he cried. "Where did this girl come from?"
"I found her in the forest and brought her here a prisoner," repliedthe Captain.
"Why did you do that?" inquired the King, puffing his pipe lazily.
"To create some excitement," the Captain answered. "It is so quiethere that we are all getting rusty for want of amusement. For my part,I prefer to see stirring times."
"Naturally," returned the cleaver, with a nod. "I have always said,Captain, without a bit of irony, that you are a sterling officer and asolid citizen, bowled and polished to a degree. But what do you expectme to do with these prisoners?"
"That is for you to decide," declared the Captain. "You are the King."
"To be sure; to be sure," muttered the cleaver, musingly. "As you say,we have had dull times since the steel and grindstone eloped and leftus. Command my Counselors and the Royal Courtiers to attend me, aswell as the High Priest and the Judge. We'll then decide what can bedone."
The Captain saluted and retired and Dorothy sat down on an overturnedkettle and asked:
"Have you anything to eat in your kingdom?"
"Here! Get up! Get off from me!" cried a faint voice, at which hisMajesty the cleaver said:
"Excuse me, but you're sitting on my friend the Ten-quart Kettle."
Dorothy at once arose, and the kettle turned right side up and lookedat her reproachfully.
"I'm a friend of the King, so no one dares sit on me," said he.
"I'd prefer a chair, anyway," she replied.
"Sit on that hearth," commanded the King.
So Dorothy sat on the hearth-shelf of the big range, and the subjectsof Utensia began to gather around in a large and inquisitive throng.Toto lay at Dorothy's feet and Billina flew upon the range, which hadno fire in it, and perched there as comfortably as she could.
When all the Counselors and Courtiers had assembled--and these seemedto include most of the inhabitants of the kingdom--the King rapped onthe block for order and said:
"Friends and Fellow Utensils! Our worthy Commander of the SpoonBrigade, Captain Dipp, has captured the three prisoners you see beforeyou and brought them here for--for--I don't know what for. So I askyour advice how to act in this matter, and what fate I should mete outto these captives. Judge Sifter, stand on my right. It is yourbusiness to sift this affair to the bottom. High Priest Colender,stand on my left and see that no one testifies falsely in this matter."
As these two officials took their places, Dorothy asked:
"Why is the colander the High Priest?"
"He's the holiest thing we have in the kingdom," replied King Kleaver.
"Except me," said a sieve. "I'm the whole thing when it comes toholes."
"What we need," remarked the King, rebukingly, "is a wireless sieve. Imust speak to Marconi about it. These old-fashioned sieves talk toomuch. Now, it is the duty of the King's Counselors to counsel the Kingat all times of emergency, so I beg you to speak out and advise me whatto do with these prisoners."
"I demand that they be killed several times, until they are dead!"shouted a pepperbox, hopping around very excitedly.
"Compose yourself, Mr. Paprica," advised the King. "Your remarks arepiquant and highly-seasoned, but you need a scattering of commonsense.It is only necessary to kill a person once to make him dead; but I donot see that it is necessary to kill this little girl at all."
"I don't, either," said Dorothy.
"Pardon me, but you are not expected to advise me in this matter,"replied King Kleaver.
"Why not?" asked Dorothy.
"You might be prejudiced in your own favor, and so mislead us," hesaid. "Now then, good subjects, who speaks next?"
"I'd like to smooth this thing over, in some way," said a flatiron,earnestly. "We are supposed to be useful to mankind, you know."
"But the girl isn't mankind! She's womankind!" yelled a corkscrew.
"What do you know about it?" inquired the King.
"I'm a lawyer," said the corkscrew, proudly. "I am accustomed toappear at the bar."
"But you're crooked," retorted the King, "and that debars you. You maybe a corking good lawyer, Mr. Popp, but I must ask you to withdraw yourremarks."
"Very well," said the corkscrew, sadly; "I see I haven't any pull atthis court."
"Permit me," continued the flatiron, "to press my suit, your Majesty.I do not wish to gloss over any fault the prisoner may have committed,if such a fault exists; but we owe her some consideration, and that'sflat!"
"I'd like to hear from Prince Karver," said the King.
At this a stately carvingknife stepped forward and bowed.
"The Captain was wrong to bring this girl here, and she was wrong tocome," he said. "But now that the foolish deed is done let us allprove our mettle and have a slashing good time."
"That's it! that's it!" screamed a fat choppingknife. "We'll makemincemeat of the girl and hash of the chicken and sausage of the dog!"
There was a shout of approval at this and the King had to rap again fororder.
"Gentlemen, gentlemen!" he said, "your remarks are somewhat cutting andrather disjointed, as might be expected from such acute intellects.But you give me no reasons for your demands."
"See here, Kleaver; you make me tired," said a saucepan, struttingbefore the King very impudently. "You're about the worst King thatever reigned in Utensia, and that's saying a good deal. Why don't yourun things yourself, instead of asking everybody's advice, like thebig, clumsy idiot you are?"
The King sighed.
"I wish there wasn't a saucepan in my kingdom," he said. "You fellowsare always stewing, over something, and every once in a while you slopover and make a mess of it. Go hang yourself, sir--by the handle--anddon't let me hear from you again."
Dorothy was much shocked by the dreadful language the utensilsemployed, and she thought that they must have had very little propertraining. So she said, addressing the King, who seemed very unfit torule his turbulent subjects:
"I wish you'd decide my fate right away. I can't stay here all day,trying to find out what you're going to do with me."
"This thing is becoming a regular broil, and it's time I took part init," observed a big gridiron, coming forward.
"What I'd like to know," said a can-opener, in a shrill voice, "is whythe little girl came to our forest anyhow and why she intruded uponCaptain Dipp--who ought to be called Dippy--and who she is, and whereshe came from, and where she is going, and why and wherefore andtherefore and when."
"I'm sorry to see, Sir Jabber," remarked the King to the can-opener,"that you have such a prying disposition. As a matter of fact, all thethings you mention are none of our business."
Having said this the King relighted his pipe, which had gone out.
"Tell me, please, what IS our business?" inquired a potato-masher,winking at Dorothy somewhat impertinently. "I'm fond of little girls,myself, and it seems to me she has as much right to wander in theforest as we have."
"Who accuses the little girl, anyway?" inquired a rolling-pin. "Whathas she done?"
"I don't know," said the King. "What has she done, Captain Dipp?"
"That's the trouble, your Majesty. She hasn't done anything," repliedthe Captain.
"What do you want me to do?" asked Dorothy.
This question seemed to puzzle them all. Finally, a chafingdish,exclaimed irritably:
"If no one can throw any light on this subject you must excuse me if Igo out."
At this, a big kitchen fork pricked up its ears and said in a tinyvoice:
"Let's hear from Judge Sifter."
"That's proper," returned the King.
So Judge Sifter turned around slowly several times and then said:
"We have nothing against the girl except the stove-hearth upon whichshe sits. Therefore I order her instantly discharged."
"Discharged!" cried Dorothy. "Why, I never was discharged in my life,and I don't intend to be. If it's all the same to you, I'll resign."
"It's all the same," declared the King. "You are free--you and yourcompanions--and may go wherever you like."
"Thank you," said the little girl. "But haven't you anything to eat inyour kingdom? I'm hungry."
"Go into the woods and pick blackberries," advised the King, lying downupon his back again and preparing to go to sleep. "There isn't amorsel to eat in all Utensia, that I know of."
So Dorothy jumped up and said:
"Come on, Toto and Billina. If we can't find the camp, we may findsome blackberries."
The utensils drew back and allowed them to pass without protest,although Captain Dipp marched the Spoon Brigade in close order afterthem until they had reached the edge of the clearing.
There the spoons halted; but Dorothy and her companions entered theforest again and began searching diligently for a way back to the camp,that they might rejoin their party.
17. How They Came to Bunbury
Wandering through the woods, without knowing where you are going orwhat adventure you are about to meet next, is not as pleasant as onemight think. The woods are always beautiful and impressive, and if youare not worried or hungry you may enjoy them immensely; but Dorothy wasworried and hungry that morning, so she paid little attention to thebeauties of the forest, and hurried along as fast as she could go. Shetried to keep in one direction and not circle around, but she was notat all sure that the direction she had chosen would lead her to thecamp.
By and by, to her great joy, she came upon a path. It ran to the rightand to the left, being lost in the trees in both directions, and justbefore her, upon a big oak, were fastened two signs, with arms pointingboth ways. One sign read:
TAKE THE OTHER ROAD TO BUNBURY
and the second sign read:
TAKE THE OTHER ROAD TO BUNNYBURY
"Well!" exclaimed Billina, eyeing the signs, "this looks as if we weregetting back to civilization again."
"I'm not sure about the civil'zation, dear," replied the little girl;"but it looks as if we might get SOMEWHERE, and that's a big relief,anyhow."
"Which path shall we take?" inquired the Yellow Hen.
Dorothy stared at the signs thoughtfully.
"Bunbury sounds like something to eat," she said. "Let's go there."
"It's all the same to me," replied Billina. She had picked up enoughbugs and insects from the moss as she went along to satisfy her ownhunger, but the hen knew Dorothy could not eat bugs; nor could Toto.
The path to Bunbury seemed little traveled, but it was distinct enoughand ran through the trees in a zigzag course until it finally led themto an open space filled with the queerest houses Dorothy had ever seen.They were all made of crackers laid out in tiny squares, and were ofmany pretty and ornamental shapes, having balconies and porches withposts of bread-sticks and roofs shingled with wafer-crackers.
There were walks of bread-crusts leading from house to house andforming streets, and the place seemed to have many inhabitants.
When Dorothy, followed by Billina and Toto, entered the place, theyfound people walking the streets or assembled in groups talkingtogether, or sitting upon the porches and balconies.
And what funny people they were!
Men, women and children were all made of buns and bread. Some werethin and others fat; some were white, some light brown and some verydark of complexion. A few of the buns, which seemed to form the moreimportant class of the people, were neatly frosted. Some had raisinsfor eyes and currant buttons on their clothes; others had eyes ofcloves and legs of stick cinnamon, and many wore hats and bonnetsfrosted pink and green.
There was something of a commotion in Bunbury when the strangerssuddenly appeared among them. Women caught up their children andhurried into their houses, shutting the cracker doors carefully behindthem. Some men ran so hastily that they tumbled over one another,while others, more brave, assembled in a group and faced the intrudersdefiantly.
Dorothy at once realized that she must act with caution in order not tofrighten these shy people, who were evidently unused to the presence ofstrangers. There was a delightful fragrant odor of fresh bread in thetown, and this made the little girl more hungry than ever. She toldToto and Billina to stay back while she slowly advanced toward thegroup that stood silently awaiting her.
"You must 'scuse me for coming unexpected," she said, softly, "but Ireally didn't know I was coming here until I arrived. I was lost inthe woods, you know, and I'm as hungry as anything."
"Hungry!" they murmured, in a horrified chorus.
"Yes; I haven't had anything to eat since last night's supper," sheexclaimed. "Are there any eatables in Bunbury?"
They looked at one another undecidedly, and then one portly bun man,who seemed a person of consequence, stepped forward and said:
"Little girl, to be frank with you, we are all eatables. Everything inBunbury is eatable to ravenous human creatures like you. But it is toescape being eaten and destroyed that we have secluded ourselves inthis out-of-the-way place, and there is neither right nor justice inyour coming here to feed upon us."
Dorothy looked at him longingly.
"You're bread, aren't you?" she asked.
"Yes; bread and butter. The butter is inside me, so it won't melt andrun. I do the running myself."
At this joke all the others burst into a chorus of laughter, andDorothy thought they couldn't be much afraid if they could laugh likethat.
"Couldn't I eat something besides people?" she asked. "Couldn't I eatjust one house, or a side-walk or something? I wouldn't mind much whatit was, you know."
"This is not a public bakery, child," replied the man, sternly. "It'sprivate property."
"I know Mr.--Mr.--"
"My name is C. Bunn, Esquire," said the man. "'C' stands for Cinnamon,and this place is called after my family, which is the mostaristocratic in the town."
"Oh, I don't know about that," objected another of the queer people."The Grahams and the Browns and Whites are all excellent families, andthere is none better of their kind. I'm a Boston Brown, myself."
"I admit you are all desirable citizens," said Mr. Bunn rather stiffly;"but the fact remains that our town is called Bunbury."
"'Scuse me," interrupted Dorothy; "but I'm getting hungrier everyminute. Now, if you're polite and kind, as I'm sure you ought to be,you'll let me eat SOMETHING. There's so much to eat here that you willnever miss it."
Then a big, puffed-up man, of a delicate brown color, stepped forwardand said:
"I think it would be a shame to send this child away hungry, especiallyas she agrees to eat whatever we can spare and not touch our people."
"So do I, Pop," replied a Roll who stood near.
"What, then, do you suggest, Mr. Over?" inquired Mr. Bunn.
"Why, I'll let her eat my back fence, if she wants to. It's made ofwaffles, and they're very crisp and nice."
"She may also eat my wheelbarrow," added a pleasant looking Muffin."It's made of nabiscos with a zuzu wheel."
"Very good; very good," remarked Mr. Bunn. "That is certainly verykind of you. Go with Pop Over and Mr. Muffin, little girl, and theywill feed you."
"Thank you very much," said Dorothy, gratefully. "May I bring my dogToto, and the Yellow Hen? They're hungry, too."
"Will you make them behave?" asked the Muffin.
"Of course," promised Dorothy.
"Then come along," said Pop Over.
So Dorothy and Billina and Toto walked up the street and the peopleseemed no longer to be at all afraid of them. Mr. Muffin's house camefirst, and as his wheelbarrow stood in the front yard the little girlate that first. It didn't seem very fresh, but she was so hungry thatshe was not particular. Toto ate some, too, while Billina picked upthe crumbs.
While the strangers were engaged in eating, many of the people came andstood in the street curiously watching them. Dorothy noticed sixroguish looking brown children standing all in a row, and she asked:
"Who are you, little ones?"
"We're the Graham Gems," replied one; "and we're all twins."
"I wonder if your mother could spare one or two of you?" asked Billina,who decided that they were fresh baked; but at this dangerous questionthe six little gems ran away as fast as they could go.
"You musn't say such things, Billina," said Dorothy, reprovingly. "Nowlet's go into Pop Over's back yard and get the waffles."
"I sort of hate to let that fence go," remarked Mr. Over, nervously, asthey walked toward his house. "The neighbors back of us are SodaBiscuits, and I don't care to mix with them."
"But I'm hungry yet," declared the girl. "That wheelbarrow wasn't verybig."
"I've got a shortcake piano, but none of my family can play on it," hesaid, reflectively. "Suppose you eat that."
"All right," said Dorothy; "I don't mind. Anything to beaccommodating."
So Mr. Over led her into the house, where she ate the piano, which wasof an excellent flavor.
"Is there anything to drink here?" she asked.
"Yes; I've a milk pump and a water pump; which will you have?" he asked.
"I guess I'll try 'em both," said Dorothy.
So Mr. Over called to his wife, who brought into the yard a pail madeof some kind of baked dough, and Dorothy pumped the pail full of cool,sweet milk and drank it eagerly.
The wife of Pop Over was several shades darker than her husband.
"Aren't you overdone?" the little girl asked her.
"No indeed," answered the woman. "I'm neither overdone nor done over;I'm just Mrs. Over, and I'm the President of the Bunbury BreakfastBand."
Dorothy thanked them for their hospitality and went away. At the gateMr. Cinnamon Bunn met her and said he would show her around the town."We have some very interesting inhabitants," he remarked, walkingstiffly beside her on his stick-cinnamon legs; "and all of us who arein good health are well bred. If you are no longer hungry we will callupon a few of the most important citizens."
Toto and Billina followed behind them, behaving very well, and a littleway down the street they came to a handsome residence where Aunt SallyLunn lived. The old lady was glad to meet the little girl and gave hera slice of white bread and butter which had been used as a door-mat.It was almost fresh and tasted better than anything Dorothy had eatenin the town.
"Where do you get the butter?" she inquired.
"We dig it out of the ground, which, as you may have observed, is allflour and meal," replied Mr. Bunn. "There is a butter mine just at theopposite side of the village. The trees which you see here are alldoughleanders and doughderas, and in the season we get quite a crop ofdough-nuts off them."
"I should think the flour would blow around and get into your eyes,"said Dorothy.
"No," said he; "we are bothered with cracker dust sometimes, but neverwith flour."
Then he took her to see Johnny Cake, a cheerful old gentleman who livednear by.
"I suppose you've heard of me," said old Johnny, with an air of pride."I'm a great favorite all over the world."
"Aren't you rather yellow?" asked Dorothy, looking at him critically.
"Maybe, child. But don't think I'm bilious, for I was never in betterhealth in my life," replied the old gentleman. "If anything ailed me,I'd willingly acknowledge the corn."
"Johnny's a trifle stale," said Mr. Bunn, as they went away; "but he'sa good mixer and never gets cross-grained. I will now take you to callupon some of my own relatives." They visited the Sugar Bunns, theCurrant Bunns and the Spanish Bunns, the latter having a decidedlyforeign appearance. Then they saw the French Rolls, who were verypolite to them, and made a brief call upon the Parker H. Rolls, whoseemed a bit proud and overbearing.
"But they're not as stuck up as the Frosted Jumbles," declared Mr.Bunn, "who are people I really can't abide. I don't like to besuspicious or talk scandal, but sometimes I think the Jumbles have toomuch baking powder in them."
Just then a dreadful scream was heard, and Dorothy turned hastilyaround to find a scene of great excitement a little way down thestreet. The people were crowding around Toto and throwing at himeverything they could find at hand. They pelted the little dog withhard-tack, crackers, and even articles of furniture which were hardbaked and heavy enough for missiles.
Toto howeled a little as the assortment of bake stuff struck him; buthe stood still, with head bowed and tail between his legs, untilDorothy ran up and inquired what the matter was.
"Matter!" cried a rye loafer, indignantly, "why the horrid beast haseaten three of our dear Crumpets, and is now devouring a Salt-risingBiscuit!"
"Oh, Toto! How could you?" exclaimed Dorothy, much distressed.
Toto's mouth was full of his salt-rising victim; so he only whined andwagged his tail. But Billina, who had flown to the top of a crackerhouse to be in a safe place, called out:
"Don't blame him, Dorothy; the Crumpets dared him to do it."
"Yes, and you pecked out the eyes of a Raisin Bunn--one of our bestcitizens!" shouted a bread pudding, shaking its fist at the Yellow Hen.
"What's that! What's that?" wailed Mr. Cinnamon Bunn, who had nowjoined them. "Oh, what a misfortune--what a terrible misfortune!"
"See here," said Dorothy, determined to defend her pets, "I think we'vetreated you all pretty well, seeing you're eatables an' reg'lar foodfor us. I've been kind to you and eaten your old wheelbarrows andpianos and rubbish, an' not said a word. But Toto and Billina can't be'spected to go hungry when the town's full of good things they like toeat, 'cause they can't understand your stingy ways as I do."
"You must leave here at once!" said Mr. Bunn, sternly.
"Suppose we won't go?" said Dorothy, who was now much provoked.
"Then," said he, "we will put you into the great ovens where we aremade, and bake you."
Dorothy gazed around and saw threatening looks upon the faces of all.She had not noticed any ovens in the town, but they might be there,nevertheless, for some of the inhabitants seemed very fresh. So shedecided to go, and calling to Toto and Billina to follow her shemarched up the street with as much dignity as possible, consideringthat she was followed by the hoots and cries of the buns and biscuitsand other bake stuff.
18. How Ozma Looked into the Magic Picture
Princess Ozma was a very busy little ruler, for she looked carefullyafter the comfort and welfare of her people and tried to make themhappy. If any quarrels arose she decided them justly; if any oneneeded counsel or advice she was ready and willing to listen to them.
For a day or two after Dorothy and her companions had started on theirtrip, Ozma was occupied with the affairs of her kingdom. Then shebegan to think of some manner of occupation for Uncle Henry and Aunt Emthat would be light and easy and yet give the old people something todo.
She soon decided to make Uncle Henry the Keeper of the Jewels, for someone really was needed to count and look after the bins and barrels ofemeralds, diamonds, rubies and other precious stones that were in theRoyal Storehouses. That would keep Uncle Henry busy enough, but it washarder to find something for Aunt Em to do. The palace was full ofservants, so there was no detail of housework that Aunt Em could lookafter.
While Ozma sat in her pretty room engaged in thought she happened toglance at her Magic Picture.
This was one of the most important treasures in all the Land of Oz. Itwas a large picture, set in a beautiful gold frame, and it hung in aprominent place upon a wall of Ozma's private room.
Usually this picture seemed merely a country scene, but whenever Ozmalooked at it and wished to know what any of her friends oracquaintances were doing, the magic of this wonderful picture wasstraightway disclosed. For the country scene would gradually fade awayand in its place would appear the likeness of the person or personsOzma might wish to see, surrounded by the actual scenes in which theywere then placed. In this way the Princess could view any part of theworld she wished, and watch the actions of any one in whom she wasinterested.
Ozma had often seen Dorothy in her Kansas home by this means, and now,having a little leisure, she expressed a desire to see her littlefriend again. It was while the travelers were at Fuddlecumjig, andOzma laughed merrily as she watched in the picture her friends tryingto match the pieces of Grandmother Gnit.
"They seem happy and are doubtless having a good time," the girl Rulersaid to herself; and then she began to think of the many adventures sheherself had encountered with Dorothy.
The image of her friends now faded from the Magic Picture and the oldlandscape slowly reappeared.
Ozma was thinking of the time when with Dorothy and her army shemarched to the Nome King's underground cavern, beyond the Land of Ev,and forced the old monarch to liberate his captives, who belonged tothe Royal Family of Ev. That was the time when the Scarecrow nearlyfrightened the Nome King into fits by throwing one of Billina's eggs athim, and Dorothy had captured King Roquat's Magic Belt and brought itaway with her to the Land of Oz.
The pretty Princess smiled at the recollection of this adventure, andthen she wondered what had become of the Nome King since then. Merelybecause she was curious and had nothing better to do, Ozma glanced atthe Magic Picture and wished to see in it the King of the Nomes.
Roquat the Red went every day into his tunnel to see how the work wasgetting along and to hurry his workmen as much as possible. He wasthere now, and Ozma saw him plainly in the Magic Picture.
She saw the underground tunnel, reaching far underneath the DeadlyDesert which separated the Land of Oz from the mountains beneath whichthe Nome King had his extensive caverns. She saw that the tunnel wasbeing made in the direction of the Emerald City, and knew at once itwas being dug so that the army of Nomes could march through it andattack her own beautiful and peaceful country.
"I suppose King Roquat is planning revenge against us," she said,musingly, "and thinks he can surprise us and make us his captives andslaves. How sad it is that any one can have such wicked thoughts! ButI must not blame King Roquat too severely, for he is a Nome, and hisnature is not so gentle as my own."
Then she dismissed from her mind further thought of the tunnel, forthat time, and began to wonder if Aunt Em would not be happy as RoyalMender of the Stockings of the Ruler of Oz. Ozma wore few holes in herstockings; still, they sometimes needed mending. Aunt Em ought to beable to do that very nicely.
Next day, the Princess watched the tunnel again in her Magic Picture,and every day afterward she devoted a few minutes to inspecting thework. It was not especially interesting, but she felt that it was herduty.
Slowly but surely the big, arched hole crept through the rocksunderneath the deadly desert, and day by day it drew nearer and nearerto the Emerald City.
19. How Bunnybury Welcomed the Strangers
Dorothy left Bunbury the same way she had entered it and when they werein the forest again she said to Billina:
"I never thought that things good to eat could be so dis'gree'ble."
"Often I've eaten things that tasted good but were disagreeableafterward," returned the Yellow Hen. "I think, Dorothy, if eatablesare going to act badly, it's better before than after you eat them."
"P'raps you're right," said the little girl, with a sigh. "But whatshall we do now?"
"Let us follow the path back to the signpost," suggested Billina."That will be better than getting lost again."
"Why, we're lost anyhow," declared Dorothy; "but I guess you're rightabout going back to that signpost, Billina."
They returned along the path to the place where they had first foundit, and at once took "the other road" to Bunnybury. This road was amere narrow strip, worn hard and smooth but not wide enough forDorothy's feet to tread. Still, it was a guide, and the walkingthrough the forest was not at all difficult.
Before long they reached a high wall of solid white marble, and thepath came to an end at this wall.
At first Dorothy thought there was no opening at all in the marble, buton looking closely she discovered a small square door about on a levelwith her head, and underneath this closed door was a bell-push. Nearthe bell-push a sign was painted in neat letters upon the marble, andthe sign read:
EXCEPT ON BUSINESS
This did not discourage Dorothy, however, and she rang the bell.
Pretty soon a bolt was cautiously withdrawn and the marble door swungslowly open. Then she saw it was not really a door, but a window, forseveral brass bars were placed across it, being set fast in the marbleand so close together that the little girl's fingers might barely gobetween them. Back of the bars appeared the face of a white rabbit--avery sober and sedate face--with an eye-glass held in his left eye andattached to a cord in his button-hole.
"Well! what is it?" asked the rabbit, sharply.
"I'm Dorothy," said the girl, "and I'm lost, and--"
"State your business, please," interrupted the rabbit.
"My business," she replied, "is to find out where I am, and to--"
"No one is allowed in Bunnybury without an order or a letter ofintroduction from either Ozma of Oz or Glinda the Good," announced therabbit; "so that settles the matter," and he started to close thewindow.
"Wait a minute!" cried Dorothy. "I've got a letter from Ozma."
"From the Ruler of Oz?" asked the rabbit, doubtingly.
"Of course. Ozma's my best friend, you know; and I'm a Princessmyself," she announced, earnestly.
"Hum--ha! Let me see your letter," returned the rabbit, as if he stilldoubted her.
So she hunted in her pocket and found the letter Ozma had given her.Then she handed it through the bars to the rabbit, who took it in hispaws and opened it. He read it aloud in a pompous voice, as if to letDorothy and Billina see that he was educated and could read writing.The letter was as follows:
"It will please me to have my subjects greet Princess Dorothy, thebearer of this royal missive, with the same courtesy and considerationthey would extend to me."
"Ha--hum! It is signed 'Ozma of Oz,'" continued the rabbit, "and issealed with the Great Seal of the Emerald City. Well, well, well! Howstrange! How remarkable!"
"What are you going to do about it?" inquired Dorothy, impatiently.
"We must obey the royal mandate," replied the rabbit. "We are subjectsof Ozma of Oz, and we live in her country. Also we are under theprotection of the great Sorceress Glinda the Good, who made us promiseto respect Ozma's commands."
"Then may I come in?" she asked.
"I'll open the door," said the rabbit. He shut the window anddisappeared, but a moment afterward a big door in the wall opened andadmitted Dorothy to a small room, which seemed to be a part of the walland built into it.
Here stood the rabbit she had been talking with, and now that she couldsee all of him, she gazed at the creature in surprise. He was a goodsized white rabbit with pink eyes, much like all other white rabbits.But the astonishing thing about him was the manner in which he wasdressed. He wore a white satin jacket embroidered with gold, andhaving diamond buttons. His vest was rose-colored satin, withtourmaline buttons. His trousers were white, to correspond with thejacket, and they were baggy at the knees--like those of a zouave--beingtied with knots of rose ribbons. His shoes were of white plush withdiamond buckles, and his stockings were rose silk.
The richness and even magnificence of the rabbit's clothing madeDorothy stare at the little creature wonderingly. Toto and Billina hadfollowed her into the room and when he saw them the rabbit ran to atable and sprang upon it nimbly. Then he looked at the three throughhis monocle and said:
"These companions, Princess, cannot enter Bunnybury with you."
"Why not?" asked Dorothy.
"In the first place they would frighten our people, who dislike dogsabove all things on earth; and, secondly, the letter of the Royal Ozmadoes not mention them."
"But they're my friends," persisted Dorothy, "and go wherever I go."
"Not this time," said the rabbit, decidedly. "You, yourself, Princess,are a welcome visitor, since you come so highly recommended; but unlessyou consent to leave the dog and the hen in this room I cannot permityou to enter the town."
"Never mind us, Dorothy," said Billina. "Go inside and see what theplace is like. You can tell us about it afterward, and Toto and I willrest comfortably here until you return."
This seemed the best thing to do, for Dorothy was curious to see howthe rabbit people lived and she was aware of the fact that her friendsmight frighten the timid little creatures. She had not forgotten howToto and Billina had misbehaved in Bunbury, and perhaps the rabbit waswise to insist on their staying outside the town.
"Very well," she said, "I'll go in alone. I s'pose you're the King ofthis town, aren't you?"
"No," answered the rabbit, "I'm merely the Keeper of the Wicket, and aperson of little importance, although I try to do my duty. I must nowinform you, Princess, that before you enter our town you must consentto reduce."
"Reduce what?" asked Dorothy.
"Your size. You must become the size of the rabbits, although you mayretain your own form."
"Wouldn't my clothes be too big for me?" she inquired.
"No; they will reduce when your body does."
"Can YOU make me smaller?" asked the girl.
"Easily," returned the rabbit.
"And will you make me big again, when I'm ready to go away?"
"I will," said he.
"All right, then; I'm willing," she announced.
The rabbit jumped from the table and ran--or rather hopped--to thefurther wall, where he opened a door so tiny that even Toto couldscarcely have crawled through it.
"Follow me," he said.
Now, almost any other little girl would have declared that she couldnot get through so small a door; but Dorothy had already encountered somany fairy adventures that she believed nothing was impossible in theLand of Oz. So she quietly walked toward the door, and at every stepshe grew smaller and smaller until, by the time the opening wasreached, she could pass through it with ease. Indeed, as she stoodbeside the rabbit, who sat upon his hind legs and used his paws ashands, her head was just about as high as his own.
Then the Keeper of the Wicket passed through and she followed, afterwhich the door swung shut and locked itself with a sharp click.
Dorothy now found herself in a city so strange and beautiful that shegave a gasp of surprise. The high marble wall extended all around theplace and shut out all the rest of the world. And here were marblehouses of curious forms, most of them resembling overturned kettles butwith delicate slender spires and minarets running far up into the sky.The streets were paved with white marble and in front of each house wasa lawn of rich green clover. Everything was as neat as wax, the greenand white contrasting prettily together.
But the rabbit people were, after all, the most amazing things Dorothysaw. The streets were full of them, and their costumes were sosplendid that the rich dress of the Keeper of the Wicket wascommonplace when compared with the others. Silks and satins ofdelicate hues seemed always used for material, and nearly every costumesparkled with exquisite gems.
But the lady rabbits outshone the gentlemen rabbits in splendor, andthe cut of their gowns was really wonderful. They wore bonnets, too,with feathers and jewels in them, and some wheeled baby carriages inwhich the girl could see wee bunnies. Some were lying asleep whileothers lay sucking their paws and looking around them with big pinkeyes.
As Dorothy was no bigger in size than the grown-up rabbits she had achance to observe them closely before they noticed her presence. Thenthey did not seem at all alarmed, although the little girl naturallybecame the center of attraction and regarded her with great curiosity.
"Make way!" cried the Keeper of the Wicket, in a pompous voice; "makeway for Princess Dorothy, who comes from Ozma of Oz."
Hearing this announcement, the throng of rabbits gave place to them onthe walks, and as Dorothy passed along they all bowed their headsrespectfully.
Walking thus through several handsome streets they came to a square inthe center of the City. In this square were some pretty trees and astatue in bronze of Glinda the Good, while beyond it were the portalsof the Royal Palace--an extensive and imposing building of white marblecovered with a filigree of frosted gold.
20. How Dorothy Lunched With a King
A line of rabbit soldiers was drawn up before the palace entrance, andthey wore green and gold uniforms with high shakos upon their heads andheld tiny spears in their hands. The Captain had a sword and a whiteplume in his shako.
"Salute!" called the Keeper of the Wicket. "Salute Princess Dorothy,who comes from Ozma of Oz!"
"Salute!" yelled the Captain, and all the soldiers promptly saluted.
They now entered the great hall of the palace, where they met a gailydressed attendant, from whom the Keeper of the Wicket inquired if theKing were at leisure.
"I think so," was the reply. "I heard his Majesty blubbering andwailing as usual only a few minutes ago. If he doesn't stop actinglike a cry-baby I'm going to resign my position here and go to work."
"What's the matter with your King?" asked Dorothy, surprised to hearthe rabbit attendant speak so disrespectfully of his monarch.
"Oh, he doesn't want to be King, that's all; and he simply HAS to," wasthe reply.
"Come!" said the Keeper of the Wicket, sternly; "lead us to hisMajesty; and do not air our troubles before strangers, I beg of you."
"Why, if this girl is going to see the King, he'll air his owntroubles," returned the attendant.
"That is his royal privilege," declared the Keeper.
So the attendant led them into a room all draped with cloth-of-gold andfurnished with satin-covered gold furniture. There was a throne inthis room, set on a dais and having a big, cushioned seat, and on thisseat reclined the Rabbit King. He was lying on his back, with his pawsin the air, and whining very like a puppy-dog.
"Your Majesty! your Majesty! Get up. Here's a visitor," called outthe attendant.
The King rolled over and looked at Dorothy with one watery pink eye.Then he sat up and wiped his eyes carefully with a silk handkerchiefand put on his jeweled crown, which had fallen off.
"Excuse my grief, fair stranger," he said, in a sad voice. "You beholdin me the most miserable monarch in all the world. What time is it,Blinkem?"
"One o'clock, your Majesty," replied the attendant to whom the questionwas addressed.
"Serve luncheon at once!" commanded the King. "Luncheon fortwo--that's for my visitor and me--and see that the human has some sortof food she's accustomed to."
"Yes, your Majesty," answered the attendant, and went away.
"Tie my shoe, Bristle," said the King to the Keeper of the Wicket. "Ahme! how unhappy I am!"
"What seems to be worrying your Majesty?" asked Dorothy.
"Why, it's this king business, of course," he returned, while theKeeper tied his shoe. "I didn't want to be King of Bunnybury at all,and the rabbits all knew it. So they elected me--to save themselvesfrom such a dreadful fate, I suppose--and here I am, shut up in apalace, when I might be free and happy."
"Seems to me," said Dorothy, "it's a great thing to be a King."
"Were you ever a King?" inquired the monarch.
"No," she answered, laughing.
"Then you know nothing about it," he said. "I haven't inquired who youare, but it doesn't matter. While we're at luncheon, I'll tell you allmy troubles. They're a great deal more interesting than anything youcan say about yourself."
"Perhaps they are, to you," replied Dorothy.
"Luncheon is served!" cried Blinkem, throwing open the door, and incame a dozen rabbits in livery, all bearing trays which they placedupon the table, where they arranged the dishes in an orderly manner.
"Now clear out--all of you!" exclaimed the King. "Bristle, you maywait outside, in case I want you."
When they had gone and the King was alone with Dorothy he came downfrom his throne, tossed his crown into a corner and kicked his erminerobe under the table.
"Sit down," he said, "and try to be happy. It's useless for me to try,because I'm always wretched and miserable. But I'm hungry, and I hopeyou are."
"I am," said Dorothy. "I've only eaten a wheelbarrow and a pianoto-day--oh, yes! and a slice of bread and butter that used to be adoor-mat."
"That sounds like a square meal," remarked the King, seating himselfopposite her; "but perhaps it wasn't a square piano. Eh?"
"You don't seem so very unhappy now," she said.
"But I am," protested the King, fresh tears gathering in his eyes."Even my jokes are miserable. I'm wretched, woeful, afflicted,distressed and dismal as an individual can be. Are you not sorry forme?"
"No," answered Dorothy, honestly, "I can't say I am. Seems to me thatfor a rabbit you're right in clover. This is the prettiest little cityI ever saw."
"Oh, the city is good enough," he admitted. "Glinda, the GoodSorceress, made it for us because she was fond of rabbits. I don'tmind the City so much, although I wouldn't live here if I had mychoice. It is being King that has absolutely ruined my happiness."
"Why wouldn't you live here by choice?" she asked.
"Because it is all unnatural, my dear. Rabbits are out of place insuch luxury. When I was young I lived in a burrow in the forest. Iwas surrounded by enemies and often had to run for my life. It washard getting enough to eat, at times, and when I found a bunch ofclover I had to listen and look for danger while I ate it. Wolvesprowled around the hole in which I lived and sometimes I didn't darestir out for days at a time. Oh, how happy and contented I was then!I was a real rabbit, as nature made me--wild and free!--and I evenenjoyed listening to the startled throbbing of my own heart!"
"I've often thought," said Dorothy, who was busily eating, "that itwould be fun to be a rabbit."
"It IS fun--when you're the genuine article," agreed his Majesty. "Butlook at me now! I live in a marble palace instead of a hole in theground. I have all I want to eat, without the joy of hunting for it.Every day I must dress in fine clothes and wear that horrible crowntill it makes my head ache. Rabbits come to me with all sorts oftroubles, when my own troubles are the only ones I care about. When Iwalk out I can't hop and run; I must strut on my rear legs and wear anermine robe! And the soldiers salute me and the band plays and theother rabbits laugh and clap their paws and cry out: 'Hail to theKing!' Now let me ask you, as a friend and a young lady of goodjudgment: isn't all this pomp and foolishness enough to make a decentrabbit miserable?"
"Once," said Dorothy, reflectively, "men were wild and unclothed andlived in caves and hunted for food as wild beasts do. But they gotciv'lized, in time, and now they'd hate to go back to the old days."
"That is an entirely different case," replied the King. "None of youHumans were civilized in one lifetime. It came to you by degrees. ButI have known the forest and the free life, and that is why I resentbeing civilized all at once, against my will, and being made a Kingwith a crown and an ermine robe. Pah!"
"If you don't like it, why don't you resign?" she asked.
"Impossible!" wailed the Rabbit, wiping his eyes again with hishandkerchief. "There's a beastly law in this town that forbids it.When one is elected a King, there's no getting out of it."
"Who made the laws?" inquired Dorothy.
"The same Sorceress who made the town--Glinda the Good. She built thewall, and fixed up the City, and gave us several valuable enchantments,and made the laws. Then she invited all the pink-eyed white rabbits ofthe forest to come here, after which she left us to our fate."
"What made you 'cept the invitation, and come here?" asked the child.
"I didn't know how dreadful city life was, and I'd no idea I would beelected King," said he, sobbing bitterly. "And--and--now I'm It--witha capital I--and can't escape!"
"I know Glinda," remarked Dorothy, eating for dessert a dish ofcharlotte russe, "and when I see her again, I'll ask her to put anotherKing in your place."
"Will you? Will you, indeed?" asked the King, joyfully.
"I will if you want me to," she replied.
"Hurroo--huray!" shouted the King; and then he jumped up from the tableand danced wildly about the room, waving his napkin like a flag andlaughing with glee.
After a time he managed to control his delight and returned to thetable.
"When are you likely to see Glinda?" he inquired.
"Oh, p'raps in a few days," said Dorothy.
"And you won't forget to ask her?"
"Of course not."
"Princess," said the Rabbit King, earnestly, "you have relieved me of agreat unhappiness, and I am very grateful. Therefore I propose toentertain you, since you are my guest and I am the King, as a slightmark of my appreciation. Come with me to my reception hall."
He then summoned Bristle and said to him: "Assemble all the nobility inthe great reception hall, and also tell Blinkem that I want himimmediately."
The Keeper of the Wicket bowed and hurried away, and his Majesty turnedto Dorothy and continued: "We'll have time for a walk in the gardensbefore the people get here."
The gardens were back of the palace and were filled with beautifulflowers and fragrant shrubs, with many shade and fruit trees andmarble-paved walks running in every direction. As they entered thisplace Blinkem came running to the King, who gave him several orders ina low voice. Then his Majesty rejoined Dorothy and led her through thegardens, which she admired very much.
"What lovely clothes your Majesty wears!" she said, glancing at therich blue satin costume, embroidered, with pearls in which the King wasdressed.
"Yes," he returned, with an air of pride, "this is one of my favoritesuits; but I have a good many that are even more elaborate. We haveexcellent tailors in Bunnybury, and Glinda supplies all the material.By the way, you might ask the Sorceress, when you see her, to permit meto keep my wardrobe."
"But if you go back to the forest you will not need clothes," she said.
"N--o!" he faltered; "that may be so. But I've dressed up so long thatI'm used to it, and I don't imagine I'd care to run around naked again.So perhaps the Good Glinda will let me keep the costumes."
"I'll ask her," agreed Dorothy.
Then they left the gardens and went into a fine, big reception hall,where rich rugs were spread upon the tiled floors and the furniture wasexquisitely carved and studded with jewels. The King's chair was anespecially pretty piece of furniture, being in the shape of a silverlily with one leaf bent over to form the seat. The silver waseverywhere thickly encrusted with diamonds and the seat was upholsteredin white satin.
"Oh, what a splendid chair!" cried Dorothy, clasping her handsadmiringly.
"Isn't it?" answered the King, proudly. "It is my favorite seat, and Ithink it especially becoming to my complexion. While I think of it, Iwish you'd ask Glinda to let me keep this lily chair when I go away."
"It wouldn't look very well in a hole in the ground, would it?" shesuggested.
"Maybe not; but I'm used to sitting in it and I'd like to take it withme," he answered. "But here come the ladies and gentlemen of thecourt; so please sit beside me and be presented."
21. How the King Changed His Mind
Just then a rabbit band of nearly fifty pieces marched in, playing upongolden instruments and dressed in neat uniforms. Following the bandcame the nobility of Bunnybury, all richly dressed and hopping along ontheir rear legs. Both the ladies and the gentlemen wore white glovesupon their paws, with their rings on the outside of the gloves, as thisseemed to be the fashion here. Some of the lady rabbits carriedlorgnettes, while many of the gentlemen rabbits wore monocles in theirleft eyes.
The courtiers and their ladies paraded past the King, who introducedPrincess Dorothy to each couple in a very graceful manner. Then thecompany seated themselves in chairs and on sofas and looked expectantlyat their monarch.
"It is our royal duty, as well as our royal pleasure," he said, "toprovide fitting entertainment for our distinguished guest. We will nowpresent the Royal Band of Whiskered Friskers."
As he spoke the musicians, who had arranged themselves in a corner,struck up a dance melody while into the room pranced the WhiskeredFriskers. They were eight pretty rabbits dressed only in gauzy purpleskirts fastened around their waists with diamond bands. Their whiskerswere colored a rich purple, but otherwise they were pure white.
After bowing before the King and Dorothy the Friskers began theirpranks, and these were so comical that Dorothy laughed with realenjoyment. They not only danced together, whirling and gyrating aroundthe room, but they leaped over one another, stood upon their heads andhopped and skipped here and there so nimbly that it was hard work tokeep track of them. Finally, they all made double somersaults andturned handsprings out of the room.
The nobility enthusiastically applauded, and Dorothy applauded withthem.
"They're fine!" she said to the King.
"Yes, the Whiskered Friskers are really very clever," he replied. "Ishall hate to part with them when I go away, for they have often amusedme when I was very miserable. I wonder if you would ask Glinda--"
"No, it wouldn't do at all," declared Dorothy, positively. "Therewouldn't be room in your hole in the ground for so many rabbits,'spec'ly when you get the lily chair and your clothes there. Don'tthink of such a thing, your Majesty."
The King sighed. Then he stood up and announced to the company:
"We will now hold a military drill by my picked Bodyguard of RoyalPikemen."
Now the band played a march and a company of rabbit soldiers came in.They wore green and gold uniforms and marched very stiffly but inperfect time. Their spears, or pikes, had slender shafts of polishedsilver with golden heads, and during the drill they handled theseweapons with wonderful dexterity.
"I should think you'd feel pretty safe with such a fine Bodyguard,"remarked Dorothy.
"I do," said the King. "They protect me from every harm. I supposeGlinda wouldn't--"
"No," interrupted the girl; "I'm sure she wouldn't. It's the King'sown Bodyguard, and when you are no longer King you can't have 'em."
The King did not reply, but he looked rather sorrowful for a time.
When the soldiers had marched out he said to the company:
"The Royal Jugglers will now appear."
Dorothy had seen many jugglers in her lifetime, but never any sointeresting as these. There were six of them, dressed in black satinembroidered with queer symbols in silver--a costume which contrastedstrongly with their snow-white fur.
First, they pushed in a big red ball and three of the rabbit jugglersstood upon its top and made it roll. Then two of them caught up athird and tossed him into the air, all vanishing, until only the twowere left. Then one of these tossed the other upward and remainedalone of all his fellows. This last juggler now touched the red ball,which fell apart, being hollow, and the five rabbits who haddisappeared in the air scrambled out of the hollow ball.
Next they all clung together and rolled swiftly upon the floor. Whenthey came to a stop only one fat rabbit juggler was seen, the othersseeming to be inside him. This one leaped lightly into the air andwhen he came down he exploded and separated into the original six.Then four of them rolled themselves into round balls and the other twotossed them around and played ball with them.
These were but a few of the tricks the rabbit jugglers performed, andthey were so skillful that all the nobility and even the King applaudedas loudly as did Dorothy.
"I suppose there are no rabbit jugglers in all the world to comparewith these," remarked the King. "And since I may not have the WhiskersFriskers or my Bodyguard, you might ask Glinda to let me take away justtwo or three of these jugglers. Will you?"
"I'll ask her," replied Dorothy, doubtfully.
"Thank you," said the King; "thank you very much. And now you shalllisten to the Winsome Waggish Warblers, who have often cheered me in mymoments of anguish."
The Winsome Waggish Warblers proved to be a quartette of rabbitsingers, two gentlemen and two lady rabbits. The gentlemen Warblerswore full-dress swallow-tailed suits of white satin, with pearls forbuttons, while the lady Warblers were gowned in white satin dresseswith long trails.
The first song they sang began in this way:
"When a rabbit gets a habit Of living in a city And wearing clothes and furbelows And jewels rare and pretty, He scorns the Bun who has to run And burrow in the ground And pities those whose watchful foes Are man and gun and hound."
Dorothy looked at the King when she heard this song and noticed that heseemed disturbed and ill at ease.
"I don't like that song," he said to the Warblers. "Give us somethingjolly and rollicking."
So they sang to a joyous, tinkling melody as follows:
"Bunnies gay Delight to play In their fairy town secure; Ev'ry frisker Flirts his whisker At a pink-eyed girl demure. Ev'ry maid In silk arrayed At her partner shyly glances, Paws are grasped, Waists are clasped As they whirl in giddy dances. Then together Through the heather 'Neath the moonlight soft they stroll; Each is very Blithe and merry, Gamboling with laughter droll. Life is fun To ev'ry one Guarded by our magic charm For to dangers We are strangers, Safe from any thought of harm."
"You see," said Dorothy to the King, when the song ended, "the rabbitsall seem to like Bunnybury except you. And I guess you're the only onethat ever has cried or was unhappy and wanted to get back to your muddyhole in the ground."
His Majesty seemed thoughtful, and while the servants passed aroundglasses of nectar and plates of frosted cakes their King was silent anda bit nervous.
When the refreshments had been enjoyed by all and the servants hadretired Dorothy said:
"I must go now, for it's getting late and I'm lost. I've got to findthe Wizard and Aunt Em and Uncle Henry and all the rest sometime beforenight comes, if I poss'bly can."
"Won't you stay with us?" asked the King. "You will be very welcome."
"No, thank you," she replied. "I must get back to my friends. And Iwant to see Glinda just as soon as I can, you know."
So the King dismissed his court and said he would himself walk withDorothy to the gate. He did not weep nor groan any more, but his longface was quite solemn and his big ears hung dejectedly on each side ofit. He still wore his crown and his ermine and walked with a handsomegold-headed cane.
When they arrived at the room in the wall the little girl found Totoand Billina waiting for her very patiently. They had been liberallyfed by some of the attendants and were in no hurry to leave suchcomfortable quarters.
The Keeper of the Wicket was by this time back in his old place, but hekept a safe distance from Toto. Dorothy bade good bye to the King asthey stood just inside the wall.
"You've been good to me," she said, "and I thank you ever so much. Assoon as poss'ble I'll see Glinda and ask her to put another King inyour place and send you back into the wild forest. And I'll ask her tolet you keep some of your clothes and the lily chair and one or twojugglers to amuse you. I'm sure she will do it, 'cause she's so kindshe doesn't like any one to be unhappy."
"Ahem!" said the King, looking rather downcast. "I don't like totrouble you with my misery; so you needn't see Glinda."
"Oh, yes I will," she replied. "It won't be any trouble at all."
"But, my dear," continued the King, in an embarrassed way, "I've beenthinking the subject over carefully, and I find there are a lot ofpleasant things here in Bunnybury that I would miss if I went away. Soperhaps I'd better stay."
Dorothy laughed. Then she looked grave.
"It won't do for you to be a King and a cry-baby at the same time," shesaid. "You've been making all the other rabbits unhappy anddiscontented with your howls about being so miserable. So I guess it'sbetter to have another King."
"Oh, no indeed!" exclaimed the King, earnestly. "If you won't sayanything to Glinda I'll promise to be merry and gay all the time, andnever cry or wail again."
"Honor bright?" she asked.
"On the royal word of a King I promise it!" he answered.
"All right," said Dorothy. "You'd be a reg'lar lunatic to want toleave Bunnybury for a wild life in the forest, and I'm sure any rabbitoutside the city would be glad to take your place."
"Forget it, my dear; forget all my foolishness," pleaded the King,earnestly. "Hereafter I'll try to enjoy myself and do my duty by mysubjects."
So then she left him and entered through the little door into the roomin the wall, where she grew gradually bigger and bigger until she hadresumed her natural size.
The Keeper of the Wicket let them out into the forest and told Dorothythat she had been of great service to Bunnybury because she had broughttheir dismal King to a realization of the pleasure of ruling sobeautiful a city.
"I shall start a petition to have your statue erected beside Glinda'sin the public square," said the Keeper. "I hope you will come again,some day, and see it."
"Perhaps I shall," she replied.
Then, followed by Toto and Billina, she walked away from the highmarble wall and started back along the narrow path toward the sign-post.
22. How the Wizard Found Dorothy
When they came to the signpost, there, to their joy, were the tents ofthe Wizard pitched beside the path and the kettle bubbling merrily overthe fire. The Shaggy Man and Omby Amby were gathering firewood whileUncle Henry and Aunt Em sat in their camp chairs talking with theWizard.
They all ran forward to greet Dorothy, as she approached, and Aunt Emexclaimed: "Goodness gracious, child! Where have you been?"
"You've played hookey the whole day," added the Shaggy Man,reproachfully.
"Well, you see, I've been lost," explained the little girl, "and I'vetried awful hard to find the way back to you, but just couldn't do it."
"Did you wander in the forest all day?" asked Uncle Henry.
"You must be a'most starved!" said Aunt Em.
"No," said Dorothy, "I'm not hungry. I had a wheelbarrow and a pianofor breakfast, and lunched with a King."
"Ah!" exclaimed the Wizard, nodding with a bright smile. "So you'vebeen having adventures again."
"She's stark crazy!" cried Aunt Em. "Whoever heard of eating awheelbarrow?"
"It wasn't very big," said Dorothy; "and it had a zuzu wheel."
"And I ate the crumbs," said Billina, soberly.
"Sit down and tell us about it," begged the Wizard. "We've hunted foryou all day, and at last I noticed your footsteps in this path--and thetracks of Billina. We found the path by accident, and seeing it onlyled to two places I decided you were at either one or the other ofthose places. So we made camp and waited for you to return. And now,Dorothy, tell us where you have been--to Bunbury or to Bunnybury?"
"Why, I've been to both," she replied; "but first I went to Utensia,which isn't on any path at all."
She then sat down and related the day's adventures, and you may be sureAunt Em and Uncle Henry were much astonished at the story.
"But after seeing the Cuttenclips and the Fuddles," remarked her uncle,"we ought not to wonder at anything in this strange country."
"Seems like the only common and ordinary folks here are ourselves,"rejoined Aunt Em, diffidently.
"Now that we're together again, and one reunited party," observed theShaggy Man, "what are we to do next?"
"Have some supper and a night's rest," answered the Wizard promptly,"and then proceed upon our journey."
"Where to?" asked the Captain General.
"We haven't visited the Rigmaroles or the Flutterbudgets yet," saidDorothy. "I'd like to see them--wouldn't you?"
"They don't sound very interesting," objected Aunt Em. "But perhapsthey are."
"And then," continued the little Wizard, "we will call upon the TinWoodman and Jack Pumpkinhead and our old friend the Scarecrow, on ourway home."
"That will be nice!" cried Dorothy, eagerly.
"Can't say THEY sound very interesting, either," remarked Aunt Em.
"Why, they're the best friends I have!" asserted the little girl, "andyou're sure to like them, Aunt Em, 'cause EVER'body likes them."
By this time twilight was approaching, so they ate the fine supperwhich the Wizard magically produced from the kettle and then went tobed in the cozy tents.
They were all up bright and early next morning, but Dorothy didn'tventure to wander from the camp again for fear of more accidents.
"Do you know where there's a road?" she asked the little man.
"No, my dear," replied the Wizard; "but I'll find one."
After breakfast he waved his hand toward the tents and they becamehandkerchiefs again, which were at once returned to the pockets oftheir owners. Then they all climbed into the red wagon and theSawhorse inquired:
"Never mind which way," replied the Wizard. "Just go as you please andyou're sure to be right. I've enchanted the wheels of the wagon, andthey will roll in the right direction, never fear."
As the Sawhorse started away through the trees Dorothy said:
"If we had one of those new-fashioned airships we could float away overthe top of the forest, and look down and find just the places we want."
"Airship? Pah!" retorted the little man, scornfully. "I hate thosethings, Dorothy, although they are nothing new to either you or me. Iwas a balloonist for many years, and once my balloon carried me to theLand of Oz, and once to the Vegetable Kingdom. And once Ozma had aGump that flew all over this kingdom and had sense enough to go whereit was told to--which airships won't do. The house which the cyclonebrought to Oz all the way from Kansas, with you and Toto in it--was areal airship at the time; so you see we've got plenty of experienceflying with the birds."
"Airships are not so bad, after all," declared Dorothy. "Some daythey'll fly all over the world, and perhaps bring people even to theLand of Oz."
"I must speak to Ozma about that," said the Wizard, with a slightfrown. "It wouldn't do at all, you know, for the Emerald City tobecome a way-station on an airship line."
"No," said Dorothy, "I don't s'pose it would. But what can we do toprevent it?"
"I'm working out a magic recipe to fuddle men's brains, so they'llnever make an airship that will go where they want it to go," theWizard confided to her. "That won't keep the things from flying, nowand then, but it'll keep them from flying to the Land of Oz."
Just then the Sawhorse drew the wagon out of the forest and a beautifullandscape lay spread before the travelers' eyes. Moreover, rightbefore them was a good road that wound away through the hills andvalleys.
"Now," said the Wizard, with evident delight, "we are on the righttrack again, and there is nothing more to worry about."
"It's a foolish thing to take chances in a strange country," observedthe Shaggy Man. "Had we kept to the roads we never would have beenlost. Roads always lead to some place, else they wouldn't be roads."
"This road," added the Wizard, "leads to Rigmarole Town. I'm sure ofthat because I enchanted the wagon wheels."
Sure enough, after riding along the road for an hour or two theyentered a pretty valley where a village was nestled among the hills.The houses were Munchkin shaped, for they were all domes, with windowswider than they were high, and pretty balconies over the front doors.
Aunt Em was greatly relieved to find this town "neither paper norpatch-work," and the only surprising thing about it was that it was sofar distant from all other towns.
As the Sawhorse drew the wagon into the main street the travelersnoticed that the place was filled with people, standing in groups andseeming to be engaged in earnest conversation. So occupied withthemselves were the inhabitants that they scarcely noticed thestrangers at all. So the Wizard stopped a boy and asked:
"Is this Rigmarole Town?"
"Sir," replied the boy, "if you have traveled very much you will havenoticed that every town differs from every other town in one way oranother and so by observing the methods of the people and the way theylive as well as the style of their dwelling places it ought not to be adifficult thing to make up your mind without the trouble of askingquestions whether the town bears the appearance of the one you intendedto visit or whether perhaps having taken a different road from the oneyou should have taken you have made an error in your way and arrived atsome point where--"
"Land sakes!" cried Aunt Em, impatiently; "what's all this rigmaroleabout?"
"That's it!" said the Wizard, laughing merrily. "It's a rigmarolebecause the boy is a Rigmarole and we've come to Rigmarole Town."
"Do they all talk like that?" asked Dorothy, wonderingly.
"He might have said 'yes' or 'no' and settled the question," observedUncle Henry.
"Not here," said Omby Amby. "I don't believe the Rigmaroles know what'yes' or 'no' means."
While the boy had been talking several other people had approached thewagon and listened intently to his speech. Then they began talking toone another in long, deliberate speeches, where many words were usedbut little was said. But when the strangers criticized them so franklyone of the women, who had no one else to talk to, began an address tothem, saying:
"It is the easiest thing in the world for a person to say 'yes' or 'no'when a question that is asked for the purpose of gaining information orsatisfying the curiosity of the one who has given expression to theinquiry has attracted the attention of an individual who may becompetent either from personal experience or the experience of othersto answer it with more or less correctness or at least an attempt tosatisfy the desire for information on the part of the one who has madethe inquiry by--"
"Dear me!" exclaimed Dorothy, interrupting the speech. "I've lost alltrack of what you are saying."
"Don't let her begin over again, for goodness sake!" cried Aunt Em.
But the woman did not begin again. She did not even stop talking, butwent right on as she had begun, the words flowing from her mouth in astream.
"I'm quite sure that if we waited long enough and listened carefully,some of these people might be able to tell us something, in time," saidthe Wizard.
"Let's don't wait," returned Dorothy. "I've heard of the Rigmaroles,and wondered what they were like; but now I know, and I'm ready to moveon."
"So am I," declared Uncle Henry; "we're wasting time here."
"Why, we're all ready to go," said the Shaggy Man, putting his fingersto his ears to shut out the monotonous babble of those around the wagon.
So the Wizard spoke to the Sawhorse, who trotted nimbly through thevillage and soon gained the open country on the other side of it.Dorothy looked back, as they rode away, and noticed that the woman hadnot yet finished her speech but was talking as glibly as ever, althoughno one was near to hear her.
"If those people wrote books," Omby Amby remarked with a smile, "itwould take a whole library to say the cow jumped over the moon."
"Perhaps some of 'em do write books," asserted the little Wizard."I've read a few rigmaroles that might have come from this very town."
"Some of the college lecturers and ministers are certainly related tothese people," observed the Shaggy Man; "and it seems to me the Land ofOz is a little ahead of the United States in some of its laws. Forhere, if one can't talk clearly, and straight to the point, they sendhim to Rigmarole Town; while Uncle Sam lets him roam around wild andfree, to torture innocent people."
Dorothy was thoughtful. The Rigmaroles had made a strong impressionupon her. She decided that whenever she spoke, after this, she woulduse only enough words to express what she wanted to say.
23. How They Encountered the Flutterbudgets
They were soon among the pretty hills and valleys again, and theSawhorse sped up hill and down at a fast and easy pace, the roads beinghard and smooth. Mile after mile was speedily covered, and before theride had grown at all tiresome they sighted another village. The placeseemed even larger than Rigmarole Town, but was not so attractive inappearance.
"This must be Flutterbudget Center," declared the Wizard. "You see,it's no trouble at all to find places if you keep to the right road."
"What are the Flutterbudgets like?" inquired Dorothy.
"I do not know, my dear. But Ozma has given them a town all their own,and I've heard that whenever one of the people becomes a Flutterbudgethe is sent to this place to live."
"That is true," Omby Amby added; "Flutterbudget Center and RigmaroleTown are called 'the Defensive Settlements of Oz.'"
The village they now approached was not built in a valley, but on topof a hill, and the road they followed wound around the hill, like acorkscrew, ascending the hill easily until it came to the town.
"Look out!" screamed a voice. "Look out, or you'll run over my child!"
They gazed around and saw a woman standing upon the sidewalk nervouslywringing her hands as she gazed at them appealingly.
"Where is your child?" asked the Sawhorse.
"In the house," said the woman, bursting into tears; "but if it shouldhappen to be in the road, and you ran over it, those great wheels wouldcrush my darling to jelly. Oh dear! oh dear! Think of my darlingchild being crushed into jelly by those great wheels!"
"Gid-dap!" said the Wizard sharply, and the Sawhorse started on.
They had not gone far before a man ran out of a house shouting wildly,"Help! Help!"
The Sawhorse stopped short and the Wizard and Uncle Henry and theShaggy Man and Omby Amby jumped out of the wagon and ran to the poorman's assistance. Dorothy followed them as quickly as she could.
"What's the matter?" asked the Wizard.
"Help! help!" screamed the man; "my wife has cut her finger off andshe's bleeding to death!"
Then he turned and rushed back to the house, and all the party wentwith him. They found a woman in the front dooryard moaning andgroaning as if in great pain.
"Be brave, madam!" said the Wizard, consolingly. "You won't die justbecause you have cut off a finger, you may be sure."
"But I haven't cut off a finger!" she sobbed.
"Then what HAS happened?" asked Dorothy.
"I--I pricked my finger with a needle while I was sewing, and--and theblood came!" she replied. "And now I'll have blood-poisoning, and thedoctors will cut off my finger, and that will give me a fever and Ishall die!"
"Pshaw!" said Dorothy; "I've pricked my finger many a time, and nothinghappened."
"Really?" asked the woman, brightening and wiping her eyes upon herapron.
"Why, it's nothing at all," declared the girl. "You're more scaredthan hurt."
"Ah, that's because she's a Flutterbudget," said the Wizard, noddingwisely. "I think I know now what these people are like."
"So do I," announced Dorothy.
"Oh, boo-hoo-hoo!" sobbed the woman, giving way to a fresh burst ofgrief.
"What's wrong now?" asked the Shaggy Man.
"Oh, suppose I had pricked my foot!" she wailed. "Then the doctorswould have cut my foot off, and I'd be lamed for life!"
"Surely, ma'am," replied the Wizard, "and if you'd pricked your nosethey might cut your head off. But you see you didn't."
"But I might have!" she exclaimed, and began to cry again. So theyleft her and drove away in their wagon. And her husband came out andbegan calling "Help!" as he had before; but no one seemed to pay anyattention to him.
As the travelers turned into another street they found a man walkingexcitedly up and down the pavement. He appeared to be in a verynervous condition and the Wizard stopped him to ask:
"Is anything wrong, sir?"
"Everything is wrong," answered the man, dismally. "I can't sleep."
"Why not?" inquired Omby Amby.
"If I go to sleep I'll have to shut my eyes," he explained; "and if Ishut my eyes they may grow together, and then I'd be blind for life!"
"Did you ever hear of any one's eyes growing together?" asked Dorothy.
"No," said the man, "I never did. But it would be a dreadful thing,wouldn't it? And the thought of it makes me so nervous I'm afraid togo to sleep."
"There's no help for this case," declared the Wizard; and they went on.
At the next street corner a woman rushed up to them crying:
"Save my baby! Oh, good, kind people, save my baby!"
"Is it in danger?" asked Dorothy, noticing that the child was claspedin her arms and seemed sleeping peacefully.
"Yes, indeed," said the woman, nervously. "If I should go into thehouse and throw my child out of the window, it would roll way down tothe bottom of the hill; and then if there were a lot of tigers andbears down there, they would tear my darling babe to pieces and eat itup!"
"Are there any tigers and bears in this neighborhood?" the Wizard asked.
"I've never heard of any," admitted the woman, "but if there were--"
"Have you any idea of throwing your baby out of the window?" questionedthe little man.
"None at all," she said; "but if--"
"All your troubles are due to those 'ifs'," declared the Wizard. "Ifyou were not a Flutterbudget you wouldn't worry."
"There's another 'if'," replied the woman. "Are you a Flutterbudget,too?"
"I will be, if I stay here long," exclaimed the Wizard, nervously.
"Another 'if'!" cried the woman.
But the Wizard did not stop to argue with her. He made the Sawhorsecanter all the way down the hill, and only breathed easily when theywere miles away from the village.
After they had ridden in silence for a while Dorothy turned to thelittle man and asked:
"Do 'ifs' really make Flutterbudgets?"
"I think the 'ifs' help," he answered seriously. "Foolish fears, andworries over nothing, with a mixture of nerves and ifs, will soon makea Flutterbudget of any one."
Then there was another long silence, for all the travelers werethinking over this statement, and nearly all decided it must be true.
The country they were now passing through was everywhere tinted purple,the prevailing color of the Gillikin Country; but as the Sawhorseascended a hill they found that upon the other side everything was of arich yellow hue.
"Aha!" cried the Captain General; "here is the Country of the Winkies.We are just crossing the boundary line."
"Then we may be able to lunch with the Tin Woodman," announced theWizard, joyfully.
"Must we lunch on tin?" asked Aunt Em.
"Oh, no;" replied Dorothy. "Nick Chopper knows how to feed meatpeople, and he will give us plenty of good things to eat, never fear.I've been to his castle before."
"Is Nick Chopper the Tin Woodman's name?" asked Uncle Henry.
"Yes; that's one of his names," answered the little girl; "and anotherof his names is 'Emp'ror of the Winkies.' He's the King of thiscountry, you know, but Ozma rules over all the countries of Oz."
"Does the Tin Woodman keep any Flutterbudgets or Rigmaroles at hiscastle?" inquired Aunt Em, uneasily.
"No indeed," said Dorothy, positively. "He lives in a new tin castle,all full of lovely things."
"I should think it would rust," said Uncle Henry.
"He has thousands of Winkies to keep it polished for him," explainedthe Wizard. "His people love to do anything in their power for theirbeloved Emperor, so there isn't a particle of rust on all the bigcastle."
"I suppose they polish their Emperor, too," said Aunt Em.
"Why, some time ago he had himself nickel-plated," the Wizard answered;"so he only needs rubbing up once in a while. He's the brightest manin all the world, is dear Nick Chopper; and the kindest-hearted."
"I helped find him," said Dorothy, reflectively. "Once the Scarecrowand I found the Tin Woodman in the woods, and he was just rusted still,that time, an' no mistake. But we oiled his joints an' got 'em goodand slippery, and after that he went with us to visit the Wizard at theEm'rald City."
"Was that the time the Wizard scared you?" asked Aunt Em.
"He didn't treat us well, at first," acknowledged Dorothy; "for he madeus go away and destroy the Wicked Witch. But after we found out he wasonly a humbug wizard we were not afraid of him."
The Wizard sighed and looked a little ashamed.
"When we try to deceive people we always make mistakes," he said. "ButI'm getting to be a real wizard now, and Glinda the Good's magic, thatI am trying to practice, can never harm any one."
"You were always a good man," declared Dorothy, "even when you were abad wizard."
"He's a good wizard now," asserted Aunt Em, looking at the little manadmiringly. "The way he made those tents grow out of handkerchiefs wasjust wonderful! And didn't he enchant the wagon wheels so they'd findthe road?"
"All the people of Oz," said the Captain General, "are very proud oftheir Wizard. He once made some soap-bubbles that astonished theworld."
The Wizard blushed at this praise, yet it pleased him. He no longerlooked sad, but seemed to have recovered his usual good humor.
The country through which they now rode was thickly dotted withfarmhouses, and yellow grain waved in all the fields. Many of theWinkies could be seen working on their farms and the wild and unsettledparts of Oz were by this time left far behind.
These Winkies appeared to be happy, light-hearted folk, and all removedtheir caps and bowed low when the red wagon with its load of travelerspassed by.
It was not long before they saw something glittering in the sunshinefar ahead.
"See!" cried Dorothy; "that's the Tin Castle, Aunt Em!"
And the Sawhorse, knowing his passengers were eager to arrive, brokeinto a swift trot that soon brought them to their destination.
24. How the Tin Woodman Told the Sad News
The Tin Woodman received Princess Dorothy's party with much grace andcordiality, yet the little girl decided that something must be worryingwith her old friend, because he was not so merry as usual.
But at first she said nothing about this, for Uncle Henry and Aunt Emwere fairly bubbling over with admiration for the beautiful tin castleand its polished tin owner. So her suspicion that something unpleasanthad happened was for a time forgotten.
"Where is the Scarecrow?" she asked, when they had all been usheredinto the big tin drawing-room of the castle, the Sawhorse being ledaround to the tin stable in the rear.
"Why, our old friend has just moved into his new mansion," explainedthe Tin Woodman. "It has been a long time in building, although myWinkies and many other people from all parts of the country have beenbusily working upon it. At last, however, it is completed, and theScarecrow took possession of his new home just two days ago."
"I hadn't heard that he wanted a home of his own," said Dorothy. "Whydoesn't he live with Ozma in the Emerald City? He used to, you know;and I thought he was happy there."
"It seems," said the Tin Woodman, "that our dear Scarecrow cannot becontented with city life, however beautiful his surroundings might be.Originally he was a farmer, for he passed his early life in acornfield, where he was supposed to frighten away the crows."
"I know," said Dorothy, nodding. "I found him, and lifted him downfrom his pole."
"So now, after a long residence in the Emerald City, his tastes haveturned to farm life again," continued the Tin Man. "He feels that hecannot be happy without a farm of his own, so Ozma gave him some landand every one helped him build his mansion, and now he is settled therefor good."
"Who designed his house?" asked the Shaggy Man.
"I believe it was Jack Pumpkinhead, who is also a farmer," was thereply.
They were now invited to enter the tin dining room, where luncheon wasserved.
Aunt Em found, to her satisfaction, that Dorothy's promise was morethan fulfilled; for, although the Tin Woodman had no appetite of hisown, he respected the appetites of his guests and saw that they werebountifully fed.
They passed the afternoon in wandering through the beautiful gardensand grounds of the palace. The walks were all paved with sheets oftin, brightly polished, and there were tin fountains and tin statueshere and there among the trees. The flowers were mostly naturalflowers and grew in the regular way; but their host showed them oneflower bed which was his especial pride.
"You see, all common flowers fade and die in time," he explained, "andso there are seasons when the pretty blooms are scarce. Therefore Idecided to make one tin flower bed all of tin flowers, and my workmenhave created them with rare skill. Here you see tin camelias, tinmarigolds, tin carnations, tin poppies and tin hollyhocks growing asnaturally as if they were real."
Indeed, they were a pretty sight, and glistened under the sunlight likespun silver. "Isn't this tin hollyhock going to seed?" asked theWizard, bending over the flowers.
"Why, I believe it is!" exclaimed the Tin Woodman, as if surprised. "Ihadn't noticed that before. But I shall plant the tin seeds and raiseanother bed of tin hollyhocks."
In one corner of the gardens Nick Chopper had established a fish-pondin which they saw swimming and disporting themselves many pretty tinfishes.
"Would they bite on hooks?" asked Aunt Em, curiously.
The Tin Woodman seemed hurt at this question.
"Madam," said he, "do you suppose I would allow anyone to catch mybeautiful fishes, even if they were foolish enough to bite on hooks?No, indeed! Every created thing is safe from harm in my domain, and Iwould as soon think of killing my little friend Dorothy as killing oneof my tin fishes."
"The Emperor is very kind-hearted, ma'am," explained the Wizard. "If afly happens to light upon his tin body he doesn't rudely brush it off,as some people might do; he asks it politely to find some other restingplace."
"What does the fly do then?" enquired Aunt Em.
"Usually it begs his pardon and goes away," said the Wizard, gravely."Flies like to be treated politely as well as other creatures, and herein Oz they understand what we say to them, and behave very nicely."
"Well," said Aunt Em, "the flies in Kansas, where I came from, don'tunderstand anything but a swat. You have to smash 'em to make 'embehave; and it's the same way with 'skeeters. Do you have 'skeeters inOz?"
"We have some very large mosquitoes here, which sing as beautifully assong birds," replied the Tin Woodman. "But they never bite or annoyour people, because they are well fed and taken care of. The reasonthey bite people in your country is because they are hungry--poorthings!"
"Yes," agreed Aunt Em; "they're hungry, all right. An' they ain't veryparticular who they feed on. I'm glad you've got the 'skeeterseducated in Oz."
That evening after dinner they were entertained by the Emperor's TinCornet Band, which played for them several sweet melodies. Also theWizard did a few sleight-of-hand tricks to amuse the company; afterwhich they all retired to their cozy tin bedrooms and slept soundlyuntil morning.
After breakfast Dorothy said to the Tin Woodman:
"If you'll tell us which way to go we'll visit the Scarecrow on our wayhome."
"I will go with you, and show you the way," replied the Emperor; "for Imust journey to-day to the Emerald City."
He looked so anxious, as he said this, that the little girl asked:
"There isn't anything wrong with Ozma, is there?"
"Not yet," said he; "but I'm afraid the time has come when I must tellyou some very bad news, little friend."
"Oh, what is it?" cried Dorothy.
"Do you remember the Nome King?" asked the Tin Woodman.
"I remember him very well," she replied.
"The Nome King has not a kind heart," said the Emperor, sadly, "and hehas been harboring wicked thoughts of revenge, because we once defeatedhim and liberated his slaves and you took away his Magic Belt. So hehas ordered his Nomes to dig a long tunnel underneath the deadlydesert, so that he may march his hosts right into the Emerald City.When he gets there he intends to destroy our beautiful country."
Dorothy was much surprised to hear this.
"How did Ozma find out about the tunnel?" she asked.
"She saw it in her Magic Picture."
"Of course," said Dorothy; "I might have known that. And what is shegoing to do?"
"I cannot tell," was the reply.
"Pooh!" cried the Yellow Hen. "We're not afraid of the Nomes. If weroll a few of our eggs down the tunnel they'll run away back home asfast as they can go."
"Why, that's true enough!" exclaimed Dorothy. "The Scarecrow onceconquered all the Nome King's army with some of Billina's eggs."
"But you do not understand all of the dreadful plot," continued the TinWoodman. "The Nome King is clever, and he knows his Nomes would runfrom eggs; so he has bargained with many terrible creatures to helphim. These evil spirits are not afraid of eggs or anything else, andthey are very powerful. So the Nome King will send them through thetunnel first, to conquer and destroy, and then the Nomes will followafter to get their share of the plunder and slaves."
They were all startled to hear this, and every face wore a troubledlook.
"Is the tunnel all ready?" asked Dorothy.
"Ozma sent me word yesterday that the tunnel was all completed exceptfor a thin crust of earth at the end. When our enemies break throughthis crust, they will be in the gardens of the royal palace, in theheart of the Emerald City. I offered to arm all my Winkies and marchto Ozma's assistance; but she said no."
"I wonder why?" asked Dorothy.
"She answered that all the inhabitants of Oz, gathered together, werenot powerful enough to fight and overcome the evil forces of the NomeKing. Therefore she refuses to fight at all."
"But they will capture and enslave us, and plunder and ruin all ourlovely land!" exclaimed the Wizard, greatly disturbed by this statement.
"I fear they will," said the Tin Woodman, sorrowfully. "And I alsofear that those who are not fairies, such as the Wizard, and Dorothy,and her uncle and aunt, as well as Toto and Billina, will be speedilyput to death by the conquerors."
"What can be done?" asked Dorothy, shuddering a little at the prospectof this awful fate.
"Nothing can be done!" gloomily replied the Emperor of the Winkies."But since Ozma refuses my army I will go myself to the Emerald City.The least I may do is to perish beside my beloved Ruler."
25. How the Scarecrow Displayed His Wisdom
This amazing news had saddened every heart and all were now anxious toreturn to the Emerald City and share Ozma's fate. So they startedwithout loss of time, and as the road led past the Scarecrow's newmansion they determined to make a brief halt there and confer with him.
"The Scarecrow is probably the wisest man in all Oz," remarked the TinWoodman, when they had started upon their journey. "His brains areplentiful and of excellent quality, and often he has told me things Imight never have thought of myself. I must say I rely a great dealupon the Scarecrow's brains in this emergency."
The Tin Woodman rode on the front seat of the wagon, where Dorothy satbetween him and the Wizard.
"Has the Scarecrow heard of Ozma's trouble?" asked the Captain General.
"I do not know, sir," was the reply.
"When I was a private," said Omby Amby, "I was an excellent army, as Ifully proved in our war against the Nomes. But now there is not asingle private left in our army, since Ozma made me the CaptainGeneral, so there is no one to fight and defend our lovely Ruler."
"True," said the Wizard. "The present army is composed only ofofficers, and the business of an officer is to order his men to fight.Since there are no men there can be no fighting."
"Poor Ozma!" whispered Dorothy, with tears in her sweet eyes. "It'sdreadful to think of all her lovely fairy country being destroyed. Iwonder if we couldn't manage to escape and get back to Kansas by meansof the Magic Belt? And we might take Ozma with us and all work hard toget money for her, so she wouldn't be so VERY lonely and unhappy aboutthe loss of her fairyland."
"Do you think there would be any work for ME in Kansas?" asked the TinWoodman.
"If you are hollow, they might use you in a canning factory," suggestedUncle Henry. "But I can't see the use of your working for a living.You never eat or sleep or need a new suit of clothes."
"I was not thinking of myself," replied the Emperor, with dignity. "Imerely wondered if I could not help to support Dorothy and Ozma."
As they indulged in these sad plans for the future they journeyed insight of the Scarecrow's new mansion, and even though filled with careand worry over the impending fate of Oz, Dorothy couldn't help afeeling of wonder at the sight she saw.
The Scarecrow's new house was shaped like an immense ear of corn. Therows of kernels were made of solid gold, and the green upon which theear stood upright was a mass of sparkling emeralds. Upon the very topof the structure was perched a figure representing the Scarecrowhimself, and upon his extended arms, as well as upon his head, wereseveral crows carved out of ebony and having ruby eyes. You mayimagine how big this ear of corn was when I tell you that a single goldkernel formed a window, swinging outward upon hinges, while a row offour kernels opened to make the front entrance. Inside there were fivestories, each story being a single room.
The gardens around the mansion consisted of cornfields, and Dorothyacknowledged that the place was in all respects a very appropriate homefor her good friend the Scarecrow.
"He would have been very happy here, I'm sure," she said, "if only theNome King had left us alone. But if Oz is destroyed of course thisplace will be destroyed too."
"Yes," replied the Tin Woodman, "and also my beautiful tin castle, thathas been my joy and pride."
"Jack Pumpkinhead's house will go too," remarked the Wizard, "as wellas Professor Wogglebug's Athletic College, and Ozma's royal palace, andall our other handsome buildings."
"Yes, Oz will indeed become a desert when the Nome King gets throughwith it," sighed Omby Amby.
The Scarecrow came out to meet them and gave them all a hearty welcome.
"I hear you have decided always to live in the Land of Oz, after this,"he said to Dorothy; "and that will delight my heart, for I have greatlydisliked our frequent partings. But why are you all so downcast?"
"Have you heard the news?" asked the Tin Woodman.
"No news to make me sad," replied the Scarecrow.
Then Nick Chopper told his friend of the Nome King's tunnel, and howthe evil creatures of the North had allied themselves with theunderground monarch for the purpose of conquering and destroying Oz."Well," said the Scarecrow, "it certainly looks bad for Ozma, and allof us. But I believe it is wrong to worry over anything before ithappens. It is surely time enough to be sad when our country isdespoiled and our people made slaves. So let us not deprive ourselvesof the few happy hours remaining to us."
"Ah! that is real wisdom," declared the Shaggy Man, approvingly."After we become really unhappy we shall regret these few hours thatare left to us, unless we enjoy them to the utmost."
"Nevertheless," said the Scarecrow, "I shall go with you to the EmeraldCity and offer Ozma my services."
"She says we can do nothing to oppose our enemies," announced the TinWoodman.
"And doubtless she is right, sir," answered the Scarecrow. "Still, shewill appreciate our sympathy, and it is the duty of Ozma's friends tostand by her side when the final disaster occurs."
He then led them into his queer mansion and showed them the beautifulrooms in all the five stories. The lower room was a grand receptionhall, with a hand-organ in one corner. This instrument the Scarecrow,when alone, could turn to amuse himself, as he was very fond of music.The walls were hung with white silk, upon which flocks of black crowswere embroidered in black diamonds. Some of the chairs were made inthe shape of big crows and upholstered with cushions of corn-coloredsilk.
The second story contained a fine banquet room, where the Scarecrowmight entertain his guests, and the three stories above that werebed-chambers exquisitely furnished and decorated.
"From these rooms," said the Scarecrow, proudly, "one may obtain fineviews of the surrounding cornfields. The corn I grow is always husky,and I call the ears my regiments, because they have so many kernels.Of course I cannot ride my cobs, but I really don't care shucks aboutthat. Taken altogether, my farm will stack up with any in theneighborhood."
The visitors partook of some light refreshment and then hurried away toresume the road to the Emerald City. The Scarecrow found a seat in thewagon between Omby Amby and the Shaggy Man, and his weight did not addmuch to the load because he was stuffed with straw.
"You will notice I have one oat-field on my property," he remarked, asthey drove away. "Oat-straw is, I have found, the best of all strawsto re-stuff myself with when my interior gets musty or out of shape."
"Are you able to re-stuff yourself without help?" asked Aunt Em. "Ishould think that after the straw was taken out of you there wouldn'tbe anything left but your clothes."
"You are almost correct, madam," he answered. "My servants do thestuffing, under my direction. For my head, in which are my excellentbrains, is a bag tied at the bottom. My face is neatly painted uponone side of the bag, as you may see. My head does not needre-stuffing, as my body does, for all that it requires is to have theface touched up with fresh paint occasionally."
It was not far from the Scarecrow's mansion to the farm of JackPumpkinhead, and when they arrived there both Uncle Henry and Aunt Emwere much impressed. The farm was one vast pumpkin field, and some ofthe pumpkins were of enormous size. In one of them, which had beenneatly hollowed out, Jack himself lived, and he declared that it was avery comfortable residence. The reason he grew so many pumpkins was inorder that he might change his head as often as it became wrinkled orthreatened to spoil.
The pumpkin-headed man welcomed his visitors joyfully and offered themseveral delicious pumpkin pies to eat.
"I don't indulge in pumpkin pies myself, for two reasons," he said."One reason is that were I to eat pumpkins I would become a cannibal,and the other reason is that I never eat, not being hollow inside."
"Very good reasons," agreed the Scarecrow.
They told Jack Pumpkinhead of the dreadful news about the Nome King,and he decided to go with them to the Emerald City and help comfortOzma.
"I had expected to live here in ease and comfort for many centuries,"said Jack, dolefully; "but of course if the Nome King destroyseverything in Oz I shall be destroyed too. Really, it seems too bad,doesn't it?"
They were soon on their journey again, and so swiftly did the Sawhorsedraw the wagon over the smooth roads that before twilight fell they hadreached the royal palace in the Emerald City, and were at theirjourney's end.
26. How Ozma Refused to Fight for Her Kingdom
Ozma was in her rose garden picking a bouquet when the party arrived,and she greeted all her old and new friends as smilingly and sweetly asever.
Dorothy's eyes were full of tears as she kissed the lovely Ruler of Oz,and she whispered to her:
"Oh, Ozma, Ozma! I'm SO sorry!"
Ozma seemed surprised.
"Sorry for what, Dorothy?" she asked.
"For all your trouble about the Nome King," was the reply.
Ozma laughed with genuine amusement.
"Why, that has not troubled me a bit, dear Princess," she replied.Then, looking around at the sad faces of her friends, she added: "Haveyou all been worrying about this tunnel?"
"We have!" they exclaimed in a chorus.
"Well, perhaps it is more serious than I imagined," admitted the fairRuler; "but I haven't given the matter much thought. After dinner wewill all meet together and talk it over."
So they went to their rooms and prepared for dinner, and Dorothydressed herself in her prettiest gown and put on her coronet, for shethought that this might be the last time she would ever appear as aPrincess of Oz.
The Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman and Jack Pumpkinhead all sat at thedinner table, although none of them was made so he could eat. Usuallythey served to enliven the meal with their merry talk, but to-night allseemed strangely silent and uneasy.
As soon as the dinner was finished Ozma led the company to her ownprivate room in which hung the Magic Picture. When they had seatedthemselves the Scarecrow was the first to speak.
"Is the Nome King's tunnel finished, Ozma?" he asked.
"It was completed to-day," she replied. "They have built it rightunder my palace grounds, and it ends in front of the ForbiddenFountain. Nothing but a crust of earth remains to separate our enemiesfrom us, and when they march here, they will easily break through thiscrust and rush upon us."
"Who will assist the Nome King?" inquired the Scarecrow.
"The Whimsies, the Growleywogs and the Phanfasms," she replied. "Iwatched to-day in my Magic Picture the messengers whom the Nome Kingsent to all these people to summon them to assemble in his greatcaverns."
"Let us see what they are doing now," suggested the Tin Woodman.
So Ozma wished to see the Nome King's cavern, and at once the landscapefaded from the Magic Picture and was replaced by the scene then beingenacted in the jeweled cavern of King Roquat.
A wild and startling scene it was which the Oz people beheld.
Before the Nome King stood the Chief of the Whimsies and the GrandGallipoot of the Growleywogs, surrounded by their most skillfulgenerals. Very fierce and powerful they looked, so that even the NomeKing and General Guph, who stood beside his master, seemed a bitfearful in the presence of their allies.
Now a still more formidable creature entered the cavern. It was theFirst and Foremost of the Phanfasms and he proudly sat down in KingRoquat's own throne and demanded the right to lead his forces throughthe tunnel in advance of all the others. The First and Foremost nowappeared to all eyes in his hairy skin and the bear's head. What hisreal form was even Roquat did not know.
Through the arches leading into the vast series of caverns that laybeyond the throne room of King Roquat could be seen ranks upon ranks ofthe invaders--thousands of Phanfasms, Growleywogs and Whimsies standingin serried lines, while behind them were massed the thousands uponthousands of General Guph's own army of Nomes.
"Listen!" whispered Ozma. "I think we can hear what they are saying."
So they kept still and listened.
"Is all ready?" demanded the First and Foremost, haughtily.
"The tunnel is finally completed," replied General Guph.
"How long will it take us to march to the Emerald City?" asked theGrand Gallipoot of the Growleywogs.
"If we start at midnight," replied the Nome King, "we shall arrive atthe Emerald City by daybreak. Then, while all the Oz people aresleeping, we will capture them and make them our slaves. After that wewill destroy the city itself and march through the Land of Oz, burningand devastating as we go."
"Good!" cried the First and Foremost. "When we get through with Oz itwill be a desert wilderness. Ozma shall be my slave."
"She shall be MY slave!" shouted the Grand Gallipoot, angrily.
"We'll decide that by and by," said King Roquat hastily. "Don't let usquarrel now, friends. First let us conquer Oz, and then we will dividethe spoils of war in a satisfactory manner."
The First and Foremost smiled wickedly; but he only said:
"I and my Phanfasms go first, for nothing on earth can oppose ourpower."
They all agreed to that, knowing the Phanfasms to be the mightiest ofthe combined forces. King Roquat now invited them to attend a banquethe had prepared, where they might occupy themselves in eating anddrinking until midnight arrived.
As they had now seen and heard all of the plot against them that theycared to, Ozma allowed her Magic Picture to fade away. Then she turnedto her friends and said:
"Our enemies will be here sooner than I expected. What do you adviseme to do?"
"It is now too late to assemble our people," said the Tin Woodman,despondently. "If you had allowed me to arm and drill my Winkies, wemight have put up a good fight and destroyed many of our enemies beforewe were conquered."
"The Munchkins are good fighters, too," said Omby Amby; "and so are theGillikins."
"But I do not wish to fight," declared Ozma, firmly. "No one has theright to destroy any living creatures, however evil they may be, or tohurt them or make them unhappy. I will not fight, even to save mykingdom."
"The Nome King is not so particular," remarked the Scarecrow. "Heintends to destroy us all and ruin our beautiful country."
"Because the Nome King intends to do evil is no excuse for my doing thesame," replied Ozma.
"Self-preservation is the first law of nature," quoted the Shaggy Man.
"True," she said, readily. "I would like to discover a plan to saveourselves without fighting."
That seemed a hopeless task to them, but realizing that Ozma wasdetermined not to fight, they tried to think of some means that mightpromise escape.
"Couldn't we bribe our enemies, by giving them a lot of emeralds andgold?" asked Jack Pumpkinhead.
"No, because they believe they are able to take everything we have,"replied the Ruler.
"I have thought of something," said Dorothy.
"What is it, dear?" asked Ozma.
"Let us use the Magic Belt to wish all of us in Kansas. We will putsome emeralds in our pockets, and can sell them in Topeka for enough topay off the mortgage on Uncle Henry's farm. Then we can all livetogether and be happy."
"A clever idea!" exclaimed the Scarecrow.
"Kansas is a very good country. I've been there," said the Shaggy Man.
"That seems to me an excellent plan," approved the Tin Woodman.
"No!" said Ozma, decidedly. "Never will I desert my people and leavethem to so cruel a fate. I will use the Magic Belt to send the rest ofyou to Kansas, if you wish, but if my beloved country must be destroyedand my people enslaved I will remain and share their fate."
"Quite right," asserted the Scarecrow, sighing. "I will remain withyou."
"And so will I," declared the Tin Woodman and the Shaggy Man and JackPumpkinhead, in turn. Tiktok, the machine man, also said he intendedto stand by Ozma. "For," said he, "I should be of no use at all inKan-sas."
"For my part," announced Dorothy, gravely, "if the Ruler of Oz must notdesert her people, a Princess of Oz has no right to run away, either.I'm willing to become a slave with the rest of you; so all we can dowith the Magic Belt is to use it to send Uncle Henry and Aunt Em backto Kansas."
"I've been a slave all my life," Aunt Em replied, with considerablecheerfulness, "and so has Henry. I guess we won't go back to Kansas,anyway. I'd rather take my chances with the rest of you."
Ozma smiled upon them all gratefully.
"There is no need to despair just yet," she said. "I'll get up earlyto-morrow morning and be at the Forbidden Fountain when the fiercewarriors break through the crust of the earth. I will speak to thempleasantly and perhaps they won't be so very bad, after all."
"Why do they call it the Forbidden Fountain?" asked Dorothy,thoughtfully.
"Don't you know, dear?" returned Ozma, surprised.
"No," said Dorothy. "Of course I've seen the fountain in the palacegrounds, ever since I first came to Oz; and I've read the sign whichsays: 'All Persons are Forbidden to Drink at this Fountain.' But Inever knew WHY they were forbidden. The water seems clear andsparkling and it bubbles up in a golden basin all the time."
"That water," declared Ozma, gravely, "is the most dangerous thing inall the Land of Oz. It is the Water of Oblivion."
"What does that mean?" asked Dorothy.
"Whoever drinks at the Forbidden Fountain at once forgets everything hehas ever known," Ozma asserted.
"It wouldn't be a bad way to forget our troubles," suggested UncleHenry.
"That is true; but you would forget everything else, and become asignorant as a baby," returned Ozma.
"Does it make one crazy?" asked Dorothy.
"No; it only makes one forget," replied the girl Ruler. "It is saidthat once--long, long ago--a wicked King ruled Oz, and made himself andall his people very miserable and unhappy. So Glinda, the GoodSorceress, placed this fountain here, and the King drank of its waterand forgot all his wickedness. His mind became innocent and vacant,and when he learned the things of life again they were all good things.But the people remembered how wicked their King had been, and werestill afraid of him. Therefore, he made them all drink of the Water ofOblivion and forget everything they had known, so that they became assimple and innocent as their King. After that, they all grew wisetogether, and their wisdom was good, so that peace and happinessreigned in the land. But for fear some one might drink of the wateragain, and in an instant forget all he had learned, the King put thatsign upon the fountain, where it has remained for many centuries up tothis very day."
They had all listened intently to Ozma's story, and when she finishedspeaking there was a long period of silence while all thought upon thecurious magical power of the Water of Oblivion.
Finally the Scarecrow's painted face took on a broad smile thatstretched the cloth as far as it would go.
"How thankful I am," he said, "that I have such an excellent assortmentof brains!"
"I gave you the best brains I ever mixed," declared the Wizard, with anair of pride.
"You did, indeed!" agreed the Scarecrow, "and they work so splendidlythat they have found a way to save Oz--to save us all!"
"I'm glad to hear that," said the Wizard. "We never needed saving morethan we do just now."
"Do you mean to say you can save us from those awful Phanfasms, andGrowleywogs and Whimsies?" asked Dorothy eagerly.
"I'm sure of it, my dear," asserted the Scarecrow, still smilinggenially.
"Tell us how!" cried the Tin Woodman.
"Not now," said the Scarecrow. "You may all go to bed, and I adviseyou to forget your worries just as completely as if you had drunk ofthe Water of Oblivion in the Forbidden Fountain. I'm going to stayhere and tell my plan to Ozma alone, but if you will all be at theForbidden Fountain at daybreak, you'll see how easily we will save thekingdom when our enemies break through the crust of earth and come fromthe tunnel."
So they went away and let the Scarecrow and Ozma alone; but Dorothycould not sleep a wink all night.
"He is only a Scarecrow," she said to herself, "and I'm not sure thathis mixed brains are as clever as he thinks they are."
But she knew that if the Scarecrow's plan failed they were all lost; soshe tried to have faith in him.
27. How the Fierce Warriors Invaded Oz
The Nome King and his terrible allies sat at the banquet table untilmidnight. There was much quarreling between the Growleywogs andPhanfasms, and one of the wee-headed Whimsies got angry at General Guphand choked him until he nearly stopped breathing. Yet no one wasseriously hurt, and the Nome King felt much relieved when the clockstruck twelve and they all sprang up and seized their weapons.
"Aha!" shouted the First and Foremost. "Now to conquer the Land of Oz!"
He marshaled his Phanfasms in battle array and at his word of commandthey marched into the tunnel and began the long journey through it tothe Emerald City. The First and Foremost intended to take all thetreasures of Oz for himself; to kill all who could be killed andenslave the rest; to destroy and lay waste the whole country, andafterward to conquer and enslave the Nomes, the Growleywogs and theWhimsies. And he knew his power was sufficient to enable him to do allthese things easily.
Next marched into the tunnel the army of gigantic Growleywogs, withtheir Grand Gallipoot at their head. They were dreadful beings,indeed, and longed to get to Oz that they might begin to pilfer anddestroy. The Grand Gallipoot was a little afraid of the First andForemost, but had a cunning plan to murder or destroy that powerfulbeing and secure the wealth of Oz for himself. Mighty little of theplunder would the Nome King get, thought the Grand Gallipoot.
The Chief of the Whimsies now marched his false-headed forces into thetunnel. In his wicked little head was a plot to destroy both the Firstand Foremost and the Grand Gallipoot. He intended to let them conquerOz, since they insisted on going first; but he would afterwardtreacherously destroy them, as well as King Roquat, and keep all theslaves and treasure of Ozma's kingdom for himself.
After all his dangerous allies had marched into the tunnel the NomeKing and General Guph started to follow them, at the head of fiftythousand Nomes, all fully armed.
"Guph," said the King, "those creatures ahead of us mean mischief.They intend to get everything for themselves and leave us nothing."
"I know," replied the General; "but they are not as clever as theythink they are. When you get the Magic Belt you must at once wish theWhimsies and Growleywogs and Phanfasms all back into their owncountries--and the Belt will surely take them there."
"Good!" cried the King. "An excellent plan, Guph. I'll do it. Whilethey are conquering Oz I'll get the Magic Belt, and then only the Nomeswill remain to ravage the country."
So you see there was only one thing that all were agreed upon--that Ozshould be destroyed.
On, on, on the vast ranks of invaders marched, filling the tunnel fromside to side. With a steady tramp, tramp, they advanced, every steptaking them nearer to the beautiful Emerald City.
"Nothing can save the Land of Oz!" thought the First and Foremost,scowling until his bear face was as black as the tunnel.
"The Emerald City is as good as destroyed already!" muttered the GrandGallipoot, shaking his war club fiercely.
"In a few hours Oz will be a desert!" said the Chief of the Whimsies,with an evil laugh.
"My dear Guph," remarked the Nome King to his General, "at last myvengeance upon Ozma of Oz and her people is about to be accomplished."
"You are right!" declared the General. "Ozma is surely lost."
And now the First and Foremost, who was in advance and nearing theEmerald City, began to cough and to sneeze.
"This tunnel is terribly dusty," he growled, angrily. "I'll punishthat Nome King for not having it swept clean. My throat and eyes aregetting full of dust and I'm as thirsty as a fish!"
The Grand Gallipoot was coughing too, and his throat was parched anddry.
"What a dusty place!" he cried. "I'll be glad when we reach Oz, wherewe can get a drink."
"Who has any water?" asked the Whimsie Chief, gasping and choking. Butnone of his followers carried a drop of water, so he hastened on to getthrough the dusty tunnel to the Land of Oz.
"Where did all this dust come from?" demanded General Guph, trying hardto swallow but finding his throat so dry he couldn't.
"I don't know," answered the Nome King. "I've been in the tunnel everyday while it was being built, but I never noticed any dust before."
"Let's hurry!" cried the General. "I'd give half the gold in Oz for adrink of water."
The dust grew thicker and thicker, and the throats and eyes and nosesof the invaders were filled with it. But not one halted or turnedback. They hurried forward more fierce and vengeful than ever.
28. How They Drank at the Forbidden Fountain
The Scarecrow had no need to sleep; neither had the Tin Woodman orTiktok or Jack Pumpkinhead. So they all wandered out into the palacegrounds and stood beside the sparkling water of the Forbidden Fountainuntil daybreak. During this time they indulged in occasionalconversation.
"Nothing could make me forget what I know," remarked the Scarecrow,gazing into the fountain, "for I cannot drink the Water of Oblivion orwater of any kind. And I am glad that this is so, for I consider mywisdom unexcelled."
"You are cer-tain-ly ve-ry wise," agreed Tiktok. "For my part, I canon-ly think by ma-chin-er-y, so I do not pre-tend to know as much asyou do."
"My tin brains are very bright, but that is all I claim for them," saidNick Chopper, modestly. "Yet I do not aspire to being very wise, for Ihave noticed that the happiest people are those who do not let theirbrains oppress them."
"Mine never worry me," Jack Pumpkinhead acknowledged. "There are manyseeds of thought in my head, but they do not sprout easily. I am gladthat it is so, for if I occupied my days in thinking I should have notime for anything else."
In this cheery mood they passed the hours until the first goldenstreaks of dawn appeared in the sky. Then Ozma joined them, as freshand lovely as ever and robed in one of her prettiest gowns.
"Our enemies have not yet arrived," said the Scarecrow, after greetingaffectionately the sweet and girlish Ruler.
"They will soon be here," she said, "for I have just glanced at myMagic Picture, and have seen them coughing and choking with the dust inthe tunnel."
"Oh, is there dust in the tunnel?" asked the Tin Woodman.
"Yes; Ozma placed it there by means of the Magic Belt," explained theScarecrow, with one of his broad smiles.
Then Dorothy came to them, Uncle Henry and Aunt Em following closeafter her. The little girl's eyes were heavy because she had had asleepless and anxious night. Toto walked by her side, but the littledog's spirits were very much subdued. Billina, who was always up bydaybreak, was not long in joining the group by the fountain.
The Wizard and the Shaggy Man next arrived, and soon after appearedOmby Amby, dressed in his best uniform.
"There lies the tunnel," said Ozma, pointing to a part of the groundjust before the Forbidden Fountain, "and in a few moments the dreadfulinvaders will break through the earth and swarm over the land. Let usall stand on the other side of the Fountain and watch to see whathappens."
At once they followed her suggestion and moved around the fountain ofthe Water of Oblivion. There they stood silent and expectant until theearth beyond gave way with a sudden crash and up leaped the powerfulform of the First and Foremost, followed by all his grim warriors.
As the leader sprang forward his gleaming eyes caught the play of thefountain and he rushed toward it and drank eagerly of the sparklingwater. Many of the other Phanfasms drank, too, in order to clear theirdry and dusty throats. Then they stood around and looked at oneanother with simple, wondering smiles.
The First and Foremost saw Ozma and her companions beyond the fountain,but instead of making an effort to capture her he merely stared at herin pleased admiration of her beauty--for he had forgotten where he wasand why he had come there.
But now the Grand Gallipoot arrived, rushing from the tunnel with ahoarse cry of mingled rage and thirst. He too saw the fountain andhastened to drink of its forbidden waters. The other Growleywogs werenot slow to follow suit, and even before they had finished drinking theChief of the Whimsies and his people came to push them away, while theyone and all cast off their false heads that they might slake theirthirst at the fountain.
When the Nome King and General Guph arrived they both made a dash todrink, but the General was so mad with thirst that he knocked his Kingover, and while Roquat lay sprawling upon the ground the General drankheartily of the Water of Oblivion.
This rude act of his General made the Nome King so angry that for amoment he forgot he was thirsty and rose to his feet to glare upon thegroup of terrible warriors he had brought here to assist him. He sawOzma and her people, too, and yelled out:
"Why don't you capture them? Why don't you conquer Oz, you idiots?Why do you stand there like a lot of dummies?"
But the great warriors had become like little children. They hadforgotten all their enmity against Ozma and against Oz. They had evenforgotten who they themselves were, or why they were in this strangeand beautiful country. As for the Nome King, they did not recognizehim, and wondered who he was.
The sun came up and sent its flood of silver rays to light the faces ofthe invaders. The frowns and scowls and evil looks were all gone.Even the most monstrous of the creatures there assembled smiledinnocently and seemed light-hearted and content merely to be alive.
Not so with Roquat, the Nome King. He had not drunk from the ForbiddenFountain and all his former rage against Ozma and Dorothy now inflamedhim as fiercely as ever. The sight of General Guph babbling like ahappy child and playing with his hands in the cool waters of thefountain astonished and maddened Red Roquat. Seeing that his terribleallies and his own General refused to act, the Nome King turned toorder his great army of Nomes to advance from the tunnel and seize thehelpless Oz people.
But the Scarecrow suspected what was in the King's mind and spoke aword to the Tin Woodman. Together they ran at Roquat and grabbing himup tossed him into the great basin of the fountain.
The Nome King's body was round as a ball, and it bobbed up and down inthe Water of Oblivion while he spluttered and screamed with fear lesthe should drown. And when he cried out, his mouth filled with water,which ran down his throat, so that straightway he forgot all he hadformerly known just as completely as had all the other invaders.
Ozma and Dorothy could not refrain from laughing to see their dreadedenemies become as harmless as babies. There was no danger now that Ozwould be destroyed. The only question remaining to solve was how toget rid of this horde of intruders.
The Shaggy Man kindly pulled the Nome King out of the fountain and sethim upon his thin legs. Roquat was dripping wet, but he chattered andlaughed and wanted to drink more of the water. No thought of injuringany person was now in his mind.
Before he left the tunnel he had commanded his fifty thousand Nomes toremain there until he ordered them to advance, as he wished to give hisallies time to conquer Oz before he appeared with his own army. Ozmadid not wish all these Nomes to overrun her land, so she advanced toKing Roquat and taking his hand in her own said gently:
"Who are you? What is your name?"
"I don't know," he replied, smiling at her. "Who are you, my dear?"
"My name is Ozma," she said; "and your name is Roquat."
"Oh, is it?" he replied, seeming pleased.
"Yes; you are King of the Nomes," she said.
"Ah; I wonder what the Nomes are!" returned the King, as if puzzled.
"They are underground elves, and that tunnel over there is full ofthem," she answered. "You have a beautiful cavern at the other end ofthe tunnel, so you must go to your Nomes and say: 'March home!' Thenfollow after them and in time you will reach the pretty cavern whereyou live."
The Nome King was much pleased to learn this, for he had forgotten hehad a cavern. So he went to the tunnel and said to his army: 'Marchhome!' At once the Nomes turned and marched back through the tunnel,and the King followed after them, laughing with delight to find hisorders so readily obeyed.
The Wizard went to General Guph, who was trying to count his fingers,and told him to follow the Nome King, who was his master. Guph meeklyobeyed, and so all the Nomes quitted the Land of Oz forever.
But there were still the Phanfasms and Whimsies and Growleywogsstanding around in groups, and they were so many that they filled thegardens and trampled upon the flowers and grass because they did notknow that the tender plants would be injured by their clumsy feet. Butin all other respects they were perfectly harmless and played togetherlike children or gazed with pleasure upon the pretty sights of theroyal gardens.
After counseling with the Scarecrow Ozma sent Omby Amby to the palacefor the Magic Belt, and when the Captain General returned with it theRuler of Oz at once clasped the precious Belt around her waist.
"I wish all these strange people--the Whimsies and the Growleywogs andthe Phanfasms--safe back in their own homes!" she said.
It all happened in a twinkling, for of course the wish was no soonerspoken than it was granted.
All the hosts of the invaders were gone, and only the trampled grassshowed that they had ever been in the Land of Oz.
29. How Glinda Worked a Magic Spell
"That was better than fighting," said Ozma, when all our friends wereassembled in the palace after the exciting events of the morning; andeach and every one agreed with her.
"No one was hurt," said the Wizard, delightedly.
"And no one hurt us," added Aunt Em.
"But, best of all," said Dorothy, "the wicked people have all forgottentheir wickedness, and will not wish to hurt any one after this."
"True, Princess," declared the Shaggy Man. "It seems to me that tohave reformed all those evil characters is more important than to havesaved Oz."
"Nevertheless," remarked the Scarecrow, "I am glad Oz is saved. I cannow go back to my new mansion and live happily."
"And I am glad and grateful that my pumpkin farm is saved," said Jack.
"For my part," added the Tin Woodman, "I cannot express my joy that mylovely tin castle is not to be demolished by wicked enemies."
"Still," said Tiktok, "o-ther en-e-mies may come to Oz some day."
"Why do you allow your clock-work brains to interrupt our joy?" askedOmby Amby, frowning at the machine man.
"I say what I am wound up to say," answered Tiktok.
"And you are right," declared Ozma. "I myself have been thinking ofthis very idea, and it seems to me there are entirely too many ways forpeople to get to the Land of Oz. We used to think the deadly desertthat surrounds us was enough protection; but that is no longer thecase. The Wizard and Dorothy have both come here through the air, andI am told the earth people have invented airships that can fly anywherethey wish them to go."
"Why, sometimes they do, and sometimes they don't," asserted Dorothy.
"But in time the airships may cause us trouble," continued Ozma, "forif the earth folk learn how to manage them we would be overrun withvisitors who would ruin our lovely, secluded fairyland."
"That is true enough," agreed the Wizard.
"Also the desert fails to protect us in other ways," Ozma went on,thoughtfully. "Johnny Dooit once made a sand-boat that sailed acrossit, and the Nome King made a tunnel under it. So I believe somethingought to be done to cut us off from the rest of the world entirely, sothat no one in the future will ever be able to intrude upon us."
"How will you do that?" asked the Scarecrow.
"I do not know; but in some way I am sure it can be accomplished.To-morrow I will make a journey to the castle of Glinda the Good, andask her advice."
"May I go with you?" asked Dorothy, eagerly.
"Of course, my dear Princess; and I also invite any of our friends herewho would like to undertake the journey."
They all declared they wished to accompany their girl Ruler, for thiswas indeed an important mission, since the future of the Land of Oz toa great extent depended upon it. So Ozma gave orders to her servantsto prepare for the journey on the morrow.
That day she watched her Magic Picture, and when it showed her that allthe Nomes had returned through the tunnel to their underground caverns,Ozma used the Magic Belt to close up the tunnel, so that the earthunderneath the desert sands became as solid as it was before the Nomesbegan to dig.
Early the following morning a gay cavalcade set out to visit the famousSorceress, Glinda the Good. Ozma and Dorothy rode in a chariot drawnby the Cowardly Lion and the Hungry Tiger, while the Sawhorse drew thered wagon in which rode the rest of the party.
With hearts light and free from care they traveled merrily alongthrough the lovely and fascinating Land of Oz, and in good seasonreached the stately castle in which resided the Sorceress.
Glinda knew that they were coming.
"I have been reading about you in my Magic Book," she said, as shegreeted them in her gracious way.
"What is your Magic Book like?" inquired Aunt Em, curiously.
"It is a record of everything that happens," replied the Sorceress."As soon as an event takes place, anywhere in the world, it isimmediately found printed in my Magic Book. So when I read its pages Iam well informed."
"Did it tell you how our enemies drank the Water of 'Blivion?" askedDorothy.
"Yes, my dear; it told all about it. And also it told me you were allcoming to my castle, and why."
"Then," said Ozma, "I suppose you know what is in my mind, and that Iam seeking a way to prevent any one in the future from discovering theLand of Oz."
"Yes; I know that. And while you were on your journey I have thoughtof a way to accomplish your desire. For it seems to me unwise to allowtoo many outside people to come here. Dorothy, with her uncle andaunt, has now returned to Oz to live always, and there is no reason whywe should leave any way open for others to travel uninvited to ourfairyland. Let us make it impossible for any one ever to communicatewith us in any way, after this. Then we may live peacefully andcontentedly."
"Your advice is wise," returned Ozma. "I thank you, Glinda, for yourpromise to assist me."
"But how can you do it?" asked Dorothy. "How can you keep every onefrom ever finding Oz?"
"By making our country invisible to all eyes but our own," replied theSorceress, smiling. "I have a magic charm powerful enough toaccomplish that wonderful feat, and now that we have been warned of ourdanger by the Nome King's invasion, I believe we must not hesitate toseparate ourselves forever from all the rest of the world."
"I agree with you," said the Ruler of Oz.
"Won't it make any difference to us?" asked Dorothy, doubtfully.
"No, my dear," Glinda answered, assuringly. "We shall still be able tosee each other and everything in the Land of Oz. It won't affect us atall; but those who fly through the air over our country will look downand see nothing at all. Those who come to the edge of the desert, ortry to cross it, will catch no glimpse of Oz, or know in what directionit lies. No one will try to tunnel to us again because we cannot beseen and therefore cannot be found. In other words, the Land of Ozwill entirely disappear from the knowledge of the rest of the world."
"That's all right," said Dorothy, cheerfully. "You may make Ozinvis'ble as soon as you please, for all I care."
"It is already invisible," Glinda stated. "I knew Ozma's wishes, andperformed the Magic Spell before you arrived."
Ozma seized the hand of the Sorceress and pressed it gratefully.
"Thank you!" she said.
30. How the Story of Oz Came to an End
The writer of these Oz stories has received a little note from PrincessDorothy of Oz which, for a time, has made him feel rather disconcerted.The note was written on a broad, white feather from a stork's wing, andit said:
"YOU WILL NEVER HEAR ANYTHING MORE ABOUT OZ, BECAUSE WE ARE NOW CUT OFFFOREVER FROM ALL THE REST OF THE WORLD. BUT TOTO AND I WILL ALWAYSLOVE YOU AND ALL THE OTHER CHILDREN WHO LOVE US.
This seemed to me too bad, at first, for Oz is a very interestingfairyland. Still, we have no right to feel grieved, for we have hadenough of the history of the Land of Oz to fill six story books, andfrom its quaint people and their strange adventures we have been ableto learn many useful and amusing things.
So good luck to little Dorothy and her companions. May they live longin their invisible country and be very happy!