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The Emerald City of Oz by L. Frank Baum

Part 3 out of 4

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training. So she said, addressing the King, who seemed very unfit to
rule 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 in
it," observed a big gridiron, coming forward.

"What I'd like to know," said a can-opener, in a shrill voice, "is why
the little girl came to our forest anyhow and why she intruded upon
Captain Dipp--who ought to be called Dippy--and who she is, and where
she came from, and where she is going, and why and wherefore and
therefore 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
the things 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 the
forest as we have."

"Who accuses the little girl, anyway?" inquired a rolling-pin.
"What has 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," replied
the 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 I go out."

At this, a big kitchen fork pricked up its ears and said in a tiny voice:

"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 which
she 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 your
companions--and may go wherever you like."

"Thank you," said the little girl. "But haven't you anything to eat
in your kingdom? I'm hungry."

"Go into the woods and pick blackberries," advised the King, lying
down upon his back again and preparing to go to sleep. "There isn't a
morsel 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 find
some blackberries."

The utensils drew back and allowed them to pass without protest,
although Captain Dipp marched the Spoon Brigade in close order after
them until they had reached the edge of the clearing.

There the spoons halted; but Dorothy and her companions entered the
forest 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 or
what adventure you are about to meet next, is not as pleasant as one
might think. The woods are always beautiful and impressive, and if
you are not worried or hungry you may enjoy them immensely; but
Dorothy was worried and hungry that morning, so she paid little
attention to the beauties of the forest, and hurried along as fast as
she could go. She tried to keep in one direction and not circle
around, but she was not at all sure that the direction she had chosen
would lead her to the camp.

By and by, to her great joy, she came upon a path. It ran to the
right and to the left, being lost in the trees in both directions, and
just before her, upon a big oak, were fastened two signs, with arms
pointing both ways. One sign read:


and the second sign read:


"Well!" exclaimed Billina, eyeing the signs, "this looks as if we
were getting 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 enough
bugs and insects from the moss as she went along to satisfy her own
hunger, but the hen knew Dorothy could not eat bugs; nor could Toto.

The path to Bunbury seemed little traveled, but it was distinct enough
and ran through the trees in a zigzag course until it finally led them
to 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 of
many pretty and ornamental shapes, having balconies and porches with
posts of bread-sticks and roofs shingled with wafer-crackers.

There were walks of bread-crusts leading from house to house and
forming streets, and the place seemed to have many inhabitants.

When Dorothy, followed by Billina and Toto, entered the place, they
found people walking the streets or assembled in groups talking
together, 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 were
thin and others fat; some were white, some light brown and some very
dark of complexion. A few of the buns, which seemed to form the more
important class of the people, were neatly frosted. Some had raisins
for eyes and currant buttons on their clothes; others had eyes of
cloves and legs of stick cinnamon, and many wore hats and bonnets
frosted pink and green.

There was something of a commotion in Bunbury when the strangers
suddenly appeared among them. Women caught up their children and
hurried into their houses, shutting the cracker doors carefully behind
them. Some men ran so hastily that they tumbled over one another, while
others, more brave, assembled in a group and faced the intruders defiantly.

Dorothy at once realized that she must act with caution in order
not to frighten these shy people, who were evidently unused to the
presence of strangers. There was a delightful fragrant odor of fresh
bread in the town, and this made the little girl more hungry than
ever. She told Toto and Billina to stay back while she slowly
advanced toward the group that stood silently awaiting her.

"You must 'scuse me for coming unexpected," she said, softly,
"but I really didn't know I was coming here until I arrived.
I was lost in the 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," she
exclaimed. "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
in Bunbury is eatable to ravenous human creatures like you. But it is
to escape being eaten and destroyed that we have secluded ourselves in
this out-of-the-way place, and there is neither right nor justice in
your 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 and
run. I do the running myself."

At this joke all the others burst into a chorus of laughter, and Dorothy
thought they couldn't be much afraid if they could laugh like that.

"Couldn't I eat something besides people?" she asked. "Couldn't I eat
just one house, or a side-walk or something? I wouldn't mind much
what it was, you know."

"This is not a public bakery, child," replied the man, sternly.
"It's private 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 most
aristocratic 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, and
there 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 every
minute. 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
will never miss it."

Then a big, puffed-up man, of a delicate brown color, stepped forward
and said:

"I think it would be a shame to send this child away hungry,
especially as 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 of
waffles, 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 very
kind of you. Go with Pop Over and Mr. Muffin, little girl, and they
will feed you."

"Thank you very much," said Dorothy, gratefully. "May I bring my dog
Toto, 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 people
seemed no longer to be at all afraid of them. Mr. Muffin's house
came first, and as his wheelbarrow stood in the front yard the little
girl ate that first. It didn't seem very fresh, but she was so hungry
that she was not particular. Toto ate some, too, while Billina picked
up the crumbs.

While the strangers were engaged in eating, many of the people came
and stood in the street curiously watching them. Dorothy noticed six
roguish 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
question the six little gems ran away as fast as they could go.

"You musn't say such things, Billina," said Dorothy, reprovingly.
"Now let'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,
as they walked toward his house. "The neighbors back of us are Soda
Biscuits, and I don't care to mix with them."

"But I'm hungry yet," declared the girl. "That wheelbarrow wasn't
very big."

"I've got a shortcake piano, but none of my family can play on it," he
said, reflectively. "Suppose you eat that."

"All right," said Dorothy; "I don't mind. Anything to be accommodating."

So Mr. Over led her into the house, where she ate the piano, which was
of 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 made
of 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 Breakfast Band."

Dorothy thanked them for their hospitality and went away. At the
gate Mr. Cinnamon Bunn met her and said he would show her around the
town. "We have some very interesting inhabitants," he remarked,
walking stiffly beside her on his stick-cinnamon legs; "and all of us
who are in good health are well bred. If you are no longer hungry we
will call upon a few of the most important citizens."

Toto and Billina followed behind them, behaving very well, and a
little way down the street they came to a handsome residence where
Aunt Sally Lunn lived. The old lady was glad to meet the little girl
and gave her a 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 eaten in the town.

"Where do you get the butter?" she inquired.

"We dig it out of the ground, which, as you may have observed, is all
flour and meal," replied Mr. Bunn. "There is a butter mine just at
the opposite side of the village. The trees which you see here are
all doughleanders and doughderas, and in the season we get quite a
crop of dough-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
never with flour."

Then he took her to see Johnny Cake, a cheerful old gentleman who
lived near 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 better
health 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's
a good mixer and never gets cross-grained. I will now take you to
call upon some of my own relatives." They visited the Sugar Bunns,
the Currant Bunns and the Spanish Bunns, the latter having a decidedly
foreign appearance. Then they saw the French Rolls, who were very
polite to them, and made a brief call upon the Parker H. Rolls, who
seemed 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 be
suspicious or talk scandal, but sometimes I think the Jumbles have too
much baking powder in them."

Just then a dreadful scream was heard, and Dorothy turned hastily
around to find a scene of great excitement a little way down the
street. The people were crowding around Toto and throwing at him
everything they could find at hand. They pelted the little dog with
hard-tack, crackers, and even articles of furniture which were hard
baked and heavy enough for missiles.

Toto howeled a little as the assortment of bake stuff struck him; but
he stood still, with head bowed and tail between his legs, until
Dorothy ran up and inquired what the matter was.

"Matter!" cried a rye loafer, indignantly, "why the horrid beast
has eaten three of our dear Crumpets, and is now devouring a
Salt-rising Biscuit!"

"Oh, Toto! How could you?" exclaimed Dorothy, much distressed.

Toto's mouth was full of his salt-rising victim; so he only whined and
wagged his tail. But Billina, who had flown to the top of a cracker
house 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 best
citizens!" shouted a bread pudding, shaking its fist at the Yellow Hen.

"What's that! What's that?" wailed Mr. Cinnamon Bunn, who had now
joined them. "Oh, what a misfortune--what a terrible misfortune!"

"See here," said Dorothy, determined to defend her pets, "I think
we've treated you all pretty well, seeing you're eatables an' reg'lar
food for us. I've been kind to you and eaten your old wheelbarrows
and pianos 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 to eat, '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 are
made, 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 she
decided to go, and calling to Toto and Billina to follow her she
marched up the street with as much dignity as possible, considering
that she was followed by the hoots and cries of the buns and biscuits
and other bake stuff.

18. How Ozma Looked into the Magic Picture

Princess Ozma was a very busy little ruler, for she looked carefully
after the comfort and welfare of her people and tried to make them
happy. If any quarrels arose she decided them justly; if any one
needed 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 their
trip, Ozma was occupied with the affairs of her kingdom. Then she
began to think of some manner of occupation for Uncle Henry and Aunt
Em that would be light and easy and yet give the old people something
to do.

She soon decided to make Uncle Henry the Keeper of the Jewels, for
some one really was needed to count and look after the bins and barrels
of emeralds, diamonds, rubies and other precious stones that were in
the Royal Storehouses. That would keep Uncle Henry busy enough, but
it was harder to find something for Aunt Em to do. The palace was
full of servants, so there was no detail of housework that Aunt Em
could look after.

While Ozma sat in her pretty room engaged in thought she happened
to glance at her Magic Picture.

This was one of the most important treasures in all the Land of Oz.
It was a large picture, set in a beautiful gold frame, and it hung
in a prominent place upon a wall of Ozma's private room.

Usually this picture seemed merely a country scene, but whenever
Ozma looked at it and wished to know what any of her friends or
acquaintances were doing, the magic of this wonderful picture was
straightway disclosed. For the country scene would gradually fade
away and in its place would appear the likeness of the person or
persons Ozma might wish to see, surrounded by the actual scenes in
which they were then placed. In this way the Princess could view any
part of the world she wished, and watch the actions of any one in whom
she was interested.

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 little
friend again. It was while the travelers were at Fuddlecumjig, and
Ozma laughed merrily as she watched in the picture her friends trying
to match the pieces of Grandmother Gnit.

"They seem happy and are doubtless having a good time," the girl
Ruler said to herself; and then she began to think of the many
adventures she herself had encountered with Dorothy.

The image of her friends now faded from the Magic Picture and the old
landscape slowly reappeared.

Ozma was thinking of the time when with Dorothy and her army she
marched to the Nome King's underground cavern, beyond the Land of Ev,
and forced the old monarch to liberate his captives, who belonged to
the Royal Family of Ev. That was the time when the Scarecrow nearly
frightened the Nome King into fits by throwing one of Billina's eggs
at him, and Dorothy had captured King Roquat's Magic Belt and brought
it away with her to the Land of Oz.

The pretty Princess smiled at the recollection of this adventure, and
then she wondered what had become of the Nome King since then. Merely
because she was curious and had nothing better to do, Ozma glanced at
the 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 was
getting along and to hurry his workmen as much as possible. He was
there now, and Ozma saw him plainly in the Magic Picture.

She saw the underground tunnel, reaching far underneath the Deadly
Desert which separated the Land of Oz from the mountains beneath which
the Nome King had his extensive caverns. She saw that the tunnel was
being made in the direction of the Emerald City, and knew at once it
was being dug so that the army of Nomes could march through it and
attack 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 and
slaves. How sad it is that any one can have such wicked thoughts!
But I must not blame King Roquat too severely, for he is a Nome,
and his nature is not so gentle as my own."

Then she dismissed from her mind further thought of the tunnel, for
that time, and began to wonder if Aunt Em would not be happy as Royal
Mender of the Stockings of the Ruler of Oz. Ozma wore few holes in
her stockings; still, they sometimes needed mending. Aunt Em ought to
be able 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 the work.
It was not especially interesting, but she felt that it was her duty.

Slowly but surely the big, arched hole crept through the rocks
underneath the deadly desert, and day by day it drew nearer and
nearer to the Emerald City.

19. How Bunnybury Welcomed the Strangers

Dorothy left Bunbury the same way she had entered it and when they
were in 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 disagreeable
afterward," returned the Yellow Hen. "I think, Dorothy, if eatables
are 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 what
shall 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 right
about going back to that signpost, Billina."

They returned along the path to the place where they had first found
it, and at once took "the other road" to Bunnybury. This road was a
mere narrow strip, worn hard and smooth but not wide enough for
Dorothy's feet to tread. Still, it was a guide, and the walking
through the forest was not at all difficult.

Before long they reached a high wall of solid white marble, and the
path came to an end at this wall.

At first Dorothy thought there was no opening at all in the marble,
but on looking closely she discovered a small square door about on a
level with her head, and underneath this closed door was a bell-push.
Near the bell-push a sign was painted in neat letters upon the marble,
and the sign read:



This did not discourage Dorothy, however, and she rang the bell.

Pretty soon a bolt was cautiously withdrawn and the marble door swung
slowly open. Then she saw it was not really a door, but a window, for
several brass bars were placed across it, being set fast in the marble
and so close together that the little girl's fingers might barely go
between them. Back of the bars appeared the face of a white rabbit--a
very sober and sedate face--with an eye-glass held in his left eye and
attached 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 of
introduction from either Ozma of Oz or Glinda the Good," announced
the rabbit; "so that settles the matter," and he started to close
the window.

"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 Princess
myself," she announced, earnestly.

"Hum--ha! Let me see your letter," returned the rabbit, as if he
still doubted 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 his
paws and opened it. He read it aloud in a pompous voice, as if to let
Dorothy 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, the
bearer of this royal missive, with the same courtesy and consideration
they would extend to me."

"Ha--hum! It is signed 'Ozma of Oz,'" continued the rabbit, "and is
sealed with the Great Seal of the Emerald City. Well, well, well!
How strange! How remarkable!"

"What are you going to do about it?" inquired Dorothy, impatiently.

"We must obey the royal mandate," replied the rabbit. "We are
subjects of Ozma of Oz, and we live in her country. Also we are
under the protection of the great Sorceress Glinda the Good, who
made us promise to respect Ozma's commands."

"Then may I come in?" she asked.

"I'll open the door," said the rabbit. He shut the window and
disappeared, but a moment afterward a big door in the wall opened and
admitted Dorothy to a small room, which seemed to be a part of the wall
and built into it.

Here stood the rabbit she had been talking with, and now that she
could see all of him, she gazed at the creature in surprise. He was a
good sized white rabbit with pink eyes, much like all other white
rabbits. But the astonishing thing about him was the manner in which
he was dressed. He wore a white satin jacket embroidered with gold,
and having diamond buttons. His vest was rose-colored satin, with
tourmaline buttons. His trousers were white, to correspond with the
jacket, and they were baggy at the knees--like those of a zouave--being
tied with knots of rose ribbons. His shoes were of white plush with
diamond buckles, and his stockings were rose silk.

The richness and even magnificence of the rabbit's clothing made
Dorothy stare at the little creature wonderingly. Toto and Billina
had followed her into the room and when he saw them the rabbit ran
to a table and sprang upon it nimbly. Then he looked at the three
through his 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 dogs
above all things on earth; and, secondly, the letter of the Royal Ozma
does 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
unless you consent to leave the dog and the hen in this room I cannot
permit you to enter the town."

"Never mind us, Dorothy," said Billina. "Go inside and see what the
place is like. You can tell us about it afterward, and Toto and I
will rest comfortably here until you return."

This seemed the best thing to do, for Dorothy was curious to see how
the rabbit people lived and she was aware of the fact that her
friends might frighten the timid little creatures. She had not
forgotten how Toto and Billina had misbehaved in Bunbury, and perhaps
the rabbit was wise to insist on their staying outside the town.

"Very well," she said, "I'll go in alone. I s'pose you're the King of
this town, aren't you?"

"No," answered the rabbit, "I'm merely the Keeper of the Wicket, and
a person of little importance, although I try to do my duty. I must
now inform you, Princess, that before you enter our town you must
consent to reduce."

"Reduce what?" asked Dorothy.

"Your size. You must become the size of the rabbits, although you may
retain 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 the
further wall, where he opened a door so tiny that even Toto could
scarcely have crawled through it.

"Follow me," he said.

Now, almost any other little girl would have declared that she could
not get through so small a door; but Dorothy had already encountered
so many fairy adventures that she believed nothing was impossible in
the Land of Oz. So she quietly walked toward the door, and at every
step she grew smaller and smaller until, by the time the opening was
reached, she could pass through it with ease. Indeed, as she stood
beside the rabbit, who sat upon his hind legs and used his paws as
hands, her head was just about as high as his own.

Then the Keeper of the Wicket passed through and she followed, after
which the door swung shut and locked itself with a sharp click.

Dorothy now found herself in a city so strange and beautiful that she
gave a gasp of surprise. The high marble wall extended all around the
place and shut out all the rest of the world. And here were marble
houses of curious forms, most of them resembling overturned kettles
but with delicate slender spires and minarets running far up into the
sky. The streets were paved with white marble and in front of each
house was a lawn of rich green clover. Everything was as neat as wax,
the green and white contrasting prettily together.

But the rabbit people were, after all, the most amazing things Dorothy
saw. The streets were full of them, and their costumes were so
splendid that the rich dress of the Keeper of the Wicket was
commonplace when compared with the others. Silks and satins of
delicate hues seemed always used for material, and nearly every
costume sparkled with exquisite gems.

But the lady rabbits outshone the gentlemen rabbits in splendor, and
the cut of their gowns was really wonderful. They wore bonnets, too,
with feathers and jewels in them, and some wheeled baby carriages in
which the girl could see wee bunnies. Some were lying asleep while
others lay sucking their paws and looking around them with big pink eyes.

As Dorothy was no bigger in size than the grown-up rabbits she had a
chance to observe them closely before they noticed her presence. Then
they did not seem at all alarmed, although the little girl naturally
became the center of attraction and regarded her with great curiosity.

"Make way!" cried the Keeper of the Wicket, in a pompous voice; "make
way for Princess Dorothy, who comes from Ozma of Oz."

Hearing this announcement, the throng of rabbits gave place to
them on the walks, and as Dorothy passed along they all bowed
their heads respectfully.

Walking thus through several handsome streets they came to a square
in the center of the City. In this square were some pretty trees and
a statue in bronze of Glinda the Good, while beyond it were the
portals of the Royal Palace--an extensive and imposing building of
white marble covered 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, and
they wore green and gold uniforms with high shakos upon their heads
and held tiny spears in their hands. The Captain had a sword and a
white plume 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 gaily
dressed attendant, from whom the Keeper of the Wicket inquired if the
King were at leisure.

"I think so," was the reply. "I heard his Majesty blubbering and
wailing as usual only a few minutes ago. If he doesn't stop acting
like 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 hear
the rabbit attendant speak so disrespectfully of his monarch.

"Oh, he doesn't want to be King, that's all; and he simply HAS to,"
was the reply.

"Come!" said the Keeper of the Wicket, sternly; "lead us to his
Majesty; 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 own
troubles," 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
and furnished with satin-covered gold furniture. There was a throne
in this room, set on a dais and having a big, cushioned seat, and on
this seat reclined the Rabbit King. He was lying on his back, with his
paws in the air, and whining very like a puppy-dog.

"Your Majesty! your Majesty! Get up. Here's a visitor," called out
the 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 handkerchief
and put on his jeweled crown, which had fallen off.

"Excuse my grief, fair stranger," he said, in a sad voice.
"You behold in 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
question was addressed.

"Serve luncheon at once!" commanded the King. "Luncheon for
two--that's for my visitor and me--and see that the human has some
sort of 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.
"Ah me! how unhappy I am!"

"What seems to be worrying your Majesty?" asked Dorothy.

"Why, it's this king business, of course," he returned, while the
Keeper 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 themselves
from such a dreadful fate, I suppose--and here I am, shut up in a
palace, 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
you are, but it doesn't matter. While we're at luncheon, I'll tell
you all my troubles. They're a great deal more interesting than
anything you can say about yourself."

"Perhaps they are, to you," replied Dorothy.

"Luncheon is served!" cried Blinkem, throwing open the door, and in
came a dozen rabbits in livery, all bearing trays which they placed
upon the table, where they arranged the dishes in an orderly manner.

"Now clear out--all of you!" exclaimed the King. "Bristle, you may
wait outside, in case I want you."

When they had gone and the King was alone with Dorothy he came down
from his throne, tossed his crown into a corner and kicked his ermine
robe 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 hope you are."

"I am," said Dorothy. "I've only eaten a wheelbarrow and a piano
to-day--oh, yes! and a slice of bread and butter that used to be
a door-mat."

"That sounds like a square meal," remarked the King, seating himself
opposite her; "but perhaps it wasn't a square piano. Eh?"

Dorothy laughed.

"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 for me?"

"No," answered Dorothy, honestly, "I can't say I am. Seems to me that
for a rabbit you're right in clover. This is the prettiest little
city I ever saw."

"Oh, the city is good enough," he admitted. "Glinda, the Good
Sorceress, made it for us because she was fond of rabbits. I don't
mind the City so much, although I wouldn't live here if I had my
choice. 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 in
such luxury. When I was young I lived in a burrow in the forest. I
was surrounded by enemies and often had to run for my life. It was
hard getting enough to eat, at times, and when I found a bunch of
clover I had to listen and look for danger while I ate it. Wolves
prowled around the hole in which I lived and sometimes I didn't dare
stir 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 even
enjoyed listening to the startled throbbing of my own heart!"

"I've often thought," said Dorothy, who was busily eating, "that it
would be fun to be a rabbit."

"It IS fun--when you're the genuine article," agreed his Majesty.
"But look at me now! I live in a marble palace instead of a hole in
the ground. 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
crown till it makes my head ache. Rabbits come to me with all sorts
of troubles, when my own troubles are the only ones I care about.
When I walk out I can't hop and run; I must strut on my rear legs and
wear an ermine robe! And the soldiers salute me and the band plays
and the other rabbits laugh and clap their paws and cry out: 'Hail to
the King!' Now let me ask you, as a friend and a young lady of good
judgment: isn't all this pomp and foolishness enough to make a decent
rabbit miserable?"

"Once," said Dorothy, reflectively, "men were wild and unclothed and
lived in caves and hunted for food as wild beasts do. But they got
civ'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 you
Humans were civilized in one lifetime. It came to you by degrees.
But I have known the forest and the free life, and that is why I
resent being civilized all at once, against my will, and being made a
King with 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 his
handkerchief. "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 the
wall, and fixed up the City, and gave us several valuable enchantments,
and made the laws. Then she invited all the pink-eyed white rabbits
of the 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 be
elected King," said he, sobbing bitterly. "And--and--now I'm It--with
a capital I--and can't escape!"

"I know Glinda," remarked Dorothy, eating for dessert a dish of
charlotte russe, "and when I see her again, I'll ask her to put
another King 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
table and danced wildly about the room, waving his napkin like a flag
and laughing with glee.

After a time he managed to control his delight and returned to the table.

"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 a
great unhappiness, and I am very grateful. Therefore I propose to
entertain you, since you are my guest and I am the King, as a slight
mark of my appreciation. Come with me to my reception hall."

He then summoned Bristle and said to him: "Assemble all the nobility
in the great reception hall, and also tell Blinkem that I want
him immediately."

The Keeper of the Wicket bowed and hurried away, and his Majesty
turned to Dorothy and continued: "We'll have time for a walk in the
gardens before the people get here."

The gardens were back of the palace and were filled with beautiful
flowers and fragrant shrubs, with many shade and fruit trees and
marble-paved walks running in every direction. As they entered this
place Blinkem came running to the King, who gave him several orders
in a low voice. Then his Majesty rejoined Dorothy and led her through
the gardens, which she admired very much.

"What lovely clothes your Majesty wears!" she said, glancing at the
rich blue satin costume, embroidered, with pearls in which the King
was dressed.

"Yes," he returned, with an air of pride, "this is one of my favorite
suits; but I have a good many that are even more elaborate. We have
excellent tailors in Bunnybury, and Glinda supplies all the material.
By the way, you might ask the Sorceress, when you see her, to permit
me to 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
that I'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
was exquisitely carved and studded with jewels. The King's chair was
an especially pretty piece of furniture, being in the shape of a
silver lily with one leaf bent over to form the seat. The silver
was everywhere thickly encrusted with diamonds and the seat was
upholstered in white satin.

"Oh, what a splendid chair!" cried Dorothy, clasping her hands admiringly.

"Isn't it?" answered the King, proudly. "It is my favorite seat, and I
think it especially becoming to my complexion. While I think of it, I
wish 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?"
she suggested.

"Maybe not; but I'm used to sitting in it and I'd like to take it
with me," he answered. "But here come the ladies and gentlemen of the
court; 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
upon golden instruments and dressed in neat uniforms. Following the
band came the nobility of Bunnybury, all richly dressed and hopping
along on their rear legs. Both the ladies and the gentlemen wore
white gloves upon their paws, with their rings on the outside of the
gloves, as this seemed to be the fashion here. Some of the lady
rabbits carried lorgnettes, while many of the gentlemen rabbits wore
monocles in their left eyes.

The courtiers and their ladies paraded past the King, who introduced
Princess Dorothy to each couple in a very graceful manner. Then the
company seated themselves in chairs and on sofas and looked
expectantly at their monarch.

"It is our royal duty, as well as our royal pleasure," he said, "to
provide fitting entertainment for our distinguished guest. We will
now present 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 Whiskered
Friskers. They were eight pretty rabbits dressed only in gauzy purple
skirts fastened around their waists with diamond bands. Their whiskers
were colored a rich purple, but otherwise they were pure white.

After bowing before the King and Dorothy the Friskers began their
pranks, and these were so comical that Dorothy laughed with real
enjoyment. They not only danced together, whirling and gyrating
around the room, but they leaped over one another, stood upon their
heads and hopped and skipped here and there so nimbly that it was
hard work to keep track of them. Finally, they all made double
somersaults and turned handsprings out of the room.

The nobility enthusiastically applauded, and Dorothy applauded with them.

"They're fine!" she said to the King.

"Yes, the Whiskered Friskers are really very clever," he replied.
"I shall hate to part with them when I go away, for they have often
amused me when I was very miserable. I wonder if you would ask Glinda--"

"No, it wouldn't do at all," declared Dorothy, positively. "There
wouldn'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't
think 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 Royal Pikemen."

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 in
perfect time. Their spears, or pikes, had slender shafts of polished
silver with golden heads, and during the drill they handled these
weapons 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 suppose
Glinda wouldn't--"

"No," interrupted the girl; "I'm sure she wouldn't. It's the King's
own 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 so
interesting as these. There were six of them, dressed in black satin
embroidered with queer symbols in silver--a costume which contrasted
strongly with their snow-white fur.

First, they pushed in a big red ball and three of the rabbit jugglers
stood upon its top and made it roll. Then two of them caught up a
third and tossed him into the air, all vanishing, until only the two
were left. Then one of these tossed the other upward and remained
alone of all his fellows. This last juggler now touched the red ball,
which fell apart, being hollow, and the five rabbits who had
disappeared in the air scrambled out of the hollow ball.

Next they all clung together and rolled swiftly upon the floor. When
they came to a stop only one fat rabbit juggler was seen, the others
seeming to be inside him. This one leaped lightly into the air and
when he came down he exploded and separated into the original six.
Then four of them rolled themselves into round balls and the other
two tossed them around and played ball with them.

These were but a few of the tricks the rabbit jugglers performed, and
they were so skillful that all the nobility and even the King
applauded as loudly as did Dorothy.

"I suppose there are no rabbit jugglers in all the world to compare
with these," remarked the King. "And since I may not have the
Whiskers Friskers or my Bodyguard, you might ask Glinda to let me take
away just two 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 shall
listen to the Winsome Waggish Warblers, who have often cheered me in
my moments of anguish."

The Winsome Waggish Warblers proved to be a quartette of rabbit
singers, two gentlemen and two lady rabbits. The gentlemen Warblers
wore full-dress swallow-tailed suits of white satin, with pearls for
buttons, while the lady Warblers were gowned in white satin dresses
with 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 he seemed disturbed and ill at ease.

"I don't like that song," he said to the Warblers. "Give us something
jolly 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 rabbits
all seem to like Bunnybury except you. And I guess you're the only
one that ever has cried or was unhappy and wanted to get back to your
muddy hole in the ground."

His Majesty seemed thoughtful, and while the servants passed around
glasses of nectar and plates of frosted cakes their King was silent
and a bit nervous.

When the refreshments had been enjoyed by all and the servants had
retired Dorothy said:

"I must go now, for it's getting late and I'm lost. I've got to find
the Wizard and Aunt Em and Uncle Henry and all the rest sometime
before night 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 I
want to see Glinda just as soon as I can, you know."

So the King dismissed his court and said he would himself walk with
Dorothy to the gate. He did not weep nor groan any more, but his long
face was quite solemn and his big ears hung dejectedly on each side
of it. He still wore his crown and his ermine and walked with a
handsome gold-headed cane.

When they arrived at the room in the wall the little girl found Toto
and Billina waiting for her very patiently. They had been liberally
fed by some of the attendants and were in no hurry to leave such
comfortable quarters.

The Keeper of the Wicket was by this time back in his old place, but
he kept a safe distance from Toto. Dorothy bade good bye to the King
as they stood just inside the wall.

"You've been good to me," she said, "and I thank you ever so much. As
soon as poss'ble I'll see Glinda and ask her to put another King in
your place and send you back into the wild forest. And I'll ask her
to let you keep some of your clothes and the lily chair and one or two
jugglers to amuse you. I'm sure she will do it, 'cause she's so kind
she doesn't like any one to be unhappy."

"Ahem!" said the King, looking rather downcast. "I don't like to
trouble 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 been
thinking the subject over carefully, and I find there are a lot of
pleasant things here in Bunnybury that I would miss if I went away.
So perhaps 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,"
she said. "You've been making all the other rabbits unhappy and
discontented with your howls about being so miserable. So I guess
it's better to have another King."

"Oh, no indeed!" exclaimed the King, earnestly. "If you won't say
anything to Glinda I'll promise to be merry and gay all the time,
and never 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 to
leave Bunnybury for a wild life in the forest, and I'm sure any rabbit
outside 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 my subjects."

So then she left him and entered through the little door into the room
in the wall, where she grew gradually bigger and bigger until she had
resumed her natural size.

The Keeper of the Wicket let them out into the forest and told Dorothy
that she had been of great service to Bunnybury because she had
brought their dismal King to a realization of the pleasure of ruling
so beautiful a city.

"I shall start a petition to have your statue erected beside Glinda's
in 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 high
marble 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 of
the Wizard pitched beside the path and the kettle bubbling merrily
over the fire. The Shaggy Man and Omby Amby were gathering firewood
while Uncle Henry and Aunt Em sat in their camp chairs talking with
the Wizard.

They all ran forward to greet Dorothy, as she approached, and Aunt Em
exclaimed: "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've
tried 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 piano
for breakfast, and lunched with a King."

"Ah!" exclaimed the Wizard, nodding with a bright smile. "So you've
been having adventures again."

"She's stark crazy!" cried Aunt Em. "Whoever heard of eating
a wheelbarrow?"

"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 for
you all day, and at last I noticed your footsteps in this path--and
the tracks of Billina. We found the path by accident, and seeing it
only led to two places I decided you were at either one or the other
of those 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
sure Aunt 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 the
Shaggy 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," said
Dorothy. "I'd like to see them--wouldn't you?"

"They don't sound very interesting," objected Aunt Em. "But perhaps
they are."

"And then," continued the little Wizard, "we will call upon the Tin
Woodman and Jack Pumpkinhead and our old friend the Scarecrow, on our
way 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,
"and you're sure to like them, Aunt Em, 'cause EVER'body likes them."

By this time twilight was approaching, so they ate the fine supper
which the Wizard magically produced from the kettle and then went to
bed in the cozy tents.

They were all up bright and early next morning, but Dorothy didn't
venture 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 became
handkerchiefs again, which were at once returned to the pockets of
their owners. Then they all climbed into the red wagon and the
Sawhorse inquired:

"Which way?"

"Never mind which way," replied the Wizard. "Just go as you please
and you're sure to be right. I've enchanted the wheels of the wagon,
and they 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
over the top of the forest, and look down and find just the places
we want."

"Airship? Pah!" retorted the little man, scornfully. "I hate those
things, Dorothy, although they are nothing new to either you or me. I
was a balloonist for many years, and once my balloon carried me to the
Land of Oz, and once to the Vegetable Kingdom. And once Ozma had a
Gump that flew all over this kingdom and had sense enough to go where
it was told to--which airships won't do. The house which the cyclone
brought to Oz all the way from Kansas, with you and Toto in it--was a
real airship at the time; so you see we've got plenty of experience
flying with the birds."

"Airships are not so bad, after all," declared Dorothy. "Some day
they'll fly all over the world, and perhaps bring people even to the
Land of Oz."

"I must speak to Ozma about that," said the Wizard, with a slight
frown. "It wouldn't do at all, you know, for the Emerald City to
become a way-station on an airship line."

"No," said Dorothy, "I don't s'pose it would. But what can we do
to prevent it?"

"I'm working out a magic recipe to fuddle men's brains, so they'll
never make an airship that will go where they want it to go," the
Wizard confided to her. "That won't keep the things from flying,
now and 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
beautiful landscape lay spread before the travelers' eyes. Moreover,
right before them was a good road that wound away through the hills
and valleys.

"Now," said the Wizard, with evident delight, "we are on the right
track again, and there is nothing more to worry about."

"It's a foolish thing to take chances in a strange country," observed
the Shaggy Man. "Had we kept to the roads we never would have been
lost. Roads always lead to some place, else they wouldn't be roads."

"This road," added the Wizard, "leads to Rigmarole Town. I'm sure of
that because I enchanted the wagon wheels."

Sure enough, after riding along the road for an hour or two they
entered a pretty valley where a village was nestled among the hills.
The houses were Munchkin shaped, for they were all domes, with windows
wider than they were high, and pretty balconies over the front doors.

Aunt Em was greatly relieved to find this town "neither paper nor
patch-work," and the only surprising thing about it was that it was so
far distant from all other towns.

As the Sawhorse drew the wagon into the main street the travelers
noticed that the place was filled with people, standing in groups and
seeming to be engaged in earnest conversation. So occupied with
themselves were the inhabitants that they scarcely noticed the
strangers 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 have
noticed that every town differs from every other town in one way or
another and so by observing the methods of the people and the way they
live as well as the style of their dwelling places it ought not to be
a difficult thing to make up your mind without the trouble of asking
questions whether the town bears the appearance of the one you
intended to visit or whether perhaps having taken a different road
from the one you should have taken you have made an error in your way
and arrived at some point where--"

"Land sakes!" cried Aunt Em, impatiently; "what's all this
rigmarole about?"

"That's it!" said the Wizard, laughing merrily. "It's a rigmarole
because 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," observed
Uncle 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
the wagon and listened intently to his speech. Then they began
talking to one another in long, deliberate speeches, where many words
were used but little was said. But when the strangers criticized them
so frankly one of the women, who had no one else to talk to, began an
address to them, 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 or satisfying the curiosity of the one who has given
expression to the inquiry has attracted the attention of an individual
who may be competent either from personal experience or the experience
of others to answer it with more or less correctness or at least an
attempt to satisfy the desire for information on the part of the one
who has made the inquiry by--"

"Dear me!" exclaimed Dorothy, interrupting the speech. "I've lost all
track 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,
but went right on as she had begun, the words flowing from her mouth
in a stream.

"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,"
said the 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
move on."

"So am I," declared Uncle Henry; "we're wasting time here."

"Why, we're all ready to go," said the Shaggy Man, putting his fingers
to his ears to shut out the monotonous babble of those around the wagon.

So the Wizard spoke to the Sawhorse, who trotted nimbly through the
village and soon gained the open country on the other side of it.
Dorothy looked back, as they rode away, and noticed that the woman
had not yet finished her speech but was talking as glibly as ever,
although no one was near to hear her.

"If those people wrote books," Omby Amby remarked with a smile, "it
would 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 to
these people," observed the Shaggy Man; "and it seems to me the Land
of Oz is a little ahead of the United States in some of its laws. For
here, if one can't talk clearly, and straight to the point, they send
him to Rigmarole Town; while Uncle Sam lets him roam around wild and
free, to torture innocent people."

Dorothy was thoughtful. The Rigmaroles had made a strong impression
upon her. She decided that whenever she spoke, after this, she would
use 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 the
Sawhorse sped up hill and down at a fast and easy pace, the roads
being hard and smooth. Mile after mile was speedily covered, and
before the ride had grown at all tiresome they sighted another
village. The place seemed even larger than Rigmarole Town, but was
not so attractive in appearance.

"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
Flutterbudget he is sent to this place to live."

"That is true," Omby Amby added; "Flutterbudget Center and Rigmarole
Town are called 'the Defensive Settlements of Oz.'"

The village they now approached was not built in a valley, but on top
of a hill, and the road they followed wound around the hill, like a
corkscrew, 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 nervously
wringing 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
should happen to be in the road, and you ran over it, those great
wheels would crush my darling to jelly. Oh dear! oh dear! Think of
my darling child 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 the
Shaggy Man and Omby Amby jumped out of the wagon and ran to the poor
man'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 and
she's bleeding to death!"

Then he turned and rushed back to the house, and all the party went
with him. They found a woman in the front dooryard moaning and
groaning as if in great pain.

"Be brave, madam!" said the Wizard, consolingly. "You won't die just
because 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 the
blood came!" she replied. "And now I'll have blood-poisoning, and the
doctors will cut off my finger, and that will give me a fever and I
shall die!"

"Pshaw!" said Dorothy; "I've pricked my finger many a time,
and nothing happened."

"Really?" asked the woman, brightening and wiping her eyes
upon her apron.

"Why, it's nothing at all," declared the girl. "You're more scared
than hurt."

"Ah, that's because she's a Flutterbudget," said the Wizard, nodding
wisely. "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
of grief.

"What's wrong now?" asked the Shaggy Man.

"Oh, suppose I had pricked my foot!" she wailed. "Then the doctors
would have cut my foot off, and I'd be lamed for life!"

"Surely, ma'am," replied the Wizard, "and if you'd pricked your nose
they might cut your head off. But you see you didn't."

"But I might have!" she exclaimed, and began to cry again. So they
left her and drove away in their wagon. And her husband came out and
began calling "Help!" as he had before; but no one seemed to pay any
attention to him.

As the travelers turned into another street they found a man walking
excitedly up and down the pavement. He appeared to be in a very
nervous 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
I shut 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 to
go 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 clasped
in her arms and seemed sleeping peacefully.

"Yes, indeed," said the woman, nervously. "If I should go into the
house and throw my child out of the window, it would roll way down to
the bottom of the hill; and then if there were a lot of tigers and bears
down there, they would tear my darling babe to pieces and eat it up!"

"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?"
questioned the little man.

"None at all," she said; "but if--"

"All your troubles are due to those 'ifs'," declared the Wizard.
"If you 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 Sawhorse
canter all the way down the hill, and only breathed easily when they
were miles away from the village.

After they had ridden in silence for a while Dorothy turned to the
little man and asked:

"Do 'ifs' really make Flutterbudgets?"

"I think the 'ifs' help," he answered seriously. "Foolish fears, and
worries over nothing, with a mixture of nerves and ifs, will soon make
a Flutterbudget of any one."

Then there was another long silence, for all the travelers were
thinking 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
Sawhorse ascended a hill they found that upon the other side everything
was of a rich 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
the Wizard, joyfully.

"Must we lunch on tin?" asked Aunt Em.

"Oh, no;" replied Dorothy. "Nick Chopper knows how to feed meat
people, 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 another
of his names is 'Emp'ror of the Winkies.' He's the King of this
country, you know, but Ozma rules over all the countries of Oz."

"Does the Tin Woodman keep any Flutterbudgets or Rigmaroles at his
castle?" 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," explained
the Wizard. "His people love to do anything in their power for their
beloved Emperor, so there isn't a particle of rust on all the big castle."

"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 man in all the world, is dear Nick Chopper; and
the kindest-hearted."

"I helped find him," said Dorothy, reflectively. "Once the Scarecrow
and 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 good and slippery, and after that he went with us to visit the
Wizard at the Em'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
made us go away and destroy the Wicked Witch. But after we found out
he was only 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.
"But I'm getting to be a real wizard now, and Glinda the Good's magic,
that I am trying to practice, can never harm any one."

"You were always a good man," declared Dorothy, "even when you were a
bad wizard."

"He's a good wizard now," asserted Aunt Em, looking at the little man
admiringly. "The way he made those tents grow out of handkerchiefs
was just wonderful! And didn't he enchant the wagon wheels so they'd
find the road?"

"All the people of Oz," said the Captain General, "are very proud of
their Wizard. He once made some soap-bubbles that astonished the world."

The Wizard blushed at this praise, yet it pleased him. He no longer
looked sad, but seemed to have recovered his usual good humor.

The country through which they now rode was thickly dotted with
farmhouses, and yellow grain waved in all the fields. Many of the
Winkies could be seen working on their farms and the wild and
unsettled parts of Oz were by this time left far behind.

These Winkies appeared to be happy, light-hearted folk, and all
removed their caps and bowed low when the red wagon with its load of
travelers passed by.

It was not long before they saw something glittering in the sunshine
far ahead.

"See!" cried Dorothy; "that's the Tin Castle, Aunt Em!"

And the Sawhorse, knowing his passengers were eager to arrive, broke
into 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 and
cordiality, yet the little girl decided that something must be
worrying with her old friend, because he was not so merry as usual.

But at first she said nothing about this, for Uncle Henry and Aunt Em
were fairly bubbling over with admiration for the beautiful tin castle
and its polished tin owner. So her suspicion that something
unpleasant had happened was for a time forgotten.

"Where is the Scarecrow?" she asked, when they had all been ushered
into the big tin drawing-room of the castle, the Sawhorse being led
around to the tin stable in the rear.

"Why, our old friend has just moved into his new mansion," explained
the Tin Woodman. "It has been a long time in building, although my
Winkies and many other people from all parts of the country have been
busily working upon it. At last, however, it is completed, and the
Scarecrow took possession of his new home just two days ago."

"I hadn't heard that he wanted a home of his own," said Dorothy.
"Why doesn'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 be
contented with city life, however beautiful his surroundings might be.
Originally he was a farmer, for he passed his early life in a
cornfield, where he was supposed to frighten away the crows."

"I know," said Dorothy, nodding. "I found him, and lifted him down
from his pole."

"So now, after a long residence in the Emerald City, his tastes have
turned to farm life again," continued the Tin Man. "He feels that he
cannot be happy without a farm of his own, so Ozma gave him some land
and every one helped him build his mansion, and now he is settled
there for good."

"Who designed his house?" asked the Shaggy Man.

"I believe it was Jack Pumpkinhead, who is also a farmer,"
was the reply.

They were now invited to enter the tin dining room, where luncheon
was served.

Aunt Em found, to her satisfaction, that Dorothy's promise was
more than fulfilled; for, although the Tin Woodman had no appetite of
his own, he respected the appetites of his guests and saw that they
were bountifully fed.

They passed the afternoon in wandering through the beautiful gardens
and grounds of the palace. The walks were all paved with sheets of
tin, brightly polished, and there were tin fountains and tin statues
here and there among the trees. The flowers were mostly natural
flowers and grew in the regular way; but their host showed them one
flower bed which was his especial pride.

"You see, all common flowers fade and die in time," he explained, "and
so there are seasons when the pretty blooms are scarce. Therefore I
decided to make one tin flower bed all of tin flowers, and my workmen
have created them with rare skill. Here you see tin camelias, tin
marigolds, tin carnations, tin poppies and tin hollyhocks growing as
naturally as if they were real."

Indeed, they were a pretty sight, and glistened under the sunlight
like spun silver. "Isn't this tin hollyhock going to seed?" asked the
Wizard, bending over the flowers.

"Why, I believe it is!" exclaimed the Tin Woodman, as if surprised. "I
hadn't noticed that before. But I shall plant the tin seeds and raise
another bed of tin hollyhocks."

In one corner of the gardens Nick Chopper had established a
fish-pond in which they saw swimming and disporting themselves
many pretty tin fishes.

"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 my
beautiful fishes, even if they were foolish enough to bite on hooks?
No, indeed! Every created thing is safe from harm in my domain, and I
would as soon think of killing my little friend Dorothy as killing one
of my tin fishes."

"The Emperor is very kind-hearted, ma'am," explained the Wizard. "If
a fly 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
resting place."

"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
here in 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't
understand anything but a swat. You have to smash 'em to make 'em
behave; and it's the same way with 'skeeters. Do you have 'skeeters
in Oz?"

"We have some very large mosquitoes here, which sing as beautifully as
song birds," replied the Tin Woodman. "But they never bite or annoy
our people, because they are well fed and taken care of. The reason
they bite people in your country is because they are hungry--poor things!"

"Yes," agreed Aunt Em; "they're hungry, all right. An' they ain't
very particular who they feed on. I'm glad you've got the 'skeeters
educated in Oz."

That evening after dinner they were entertained by the Emperor's Tin
Cornet Band, which played for them several sweet melodies. Also the
Wizard did a few sleight-of-hand tricks to amuse the company; after
which they all retired to their cozy tin bedrooms and slept soundly
until 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 way home."

"I will go with you, and show you the way," replied the Emperor;
"for I must 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
tell you 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 he
has been harboring wicked thoughts of revenge, because we once defeated
him and liberated his slaves and you took away his Magic Belt. So he
has ordered his Nomes to dig a long tunnel underneath the deadly
desert, 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 she
going to do?"

"I cannot tell," was the reply.

"Pooh!" cried the Yellow Hen. "We're not afraid of the Nomes. If we
roll a few of our eggs down the tunnel they'll run away back home as
fast as they can go."

"Why, that's true enough!" exclaimed Dorothy. "The Scarecrow once
conquered all the Nome King's army with some of Billina's eggs."

"But you do not understand all of the dreadful plot," continued the
Tin Woodman. "The Nome King is clever, and he knows his Nomes would
run from eggs; so he has bargained with many terrible creatures to
help him. These evil spirits are not afraid of eggs or anything else,
and they are very powerful. So the Nome King will send them through
the tunnel first, to conquer and destroy, and then the Nomes will
follow after to get their share of the plunder and slaves."

They were all startled to hear this, and every face wore a troubled look.

"Is the tunnel all ready?" asked Dorothy.

"Ozma sent me word yesterday that the tunnel was all completed except
for a thin crust of earth at the end. When our enemies break through
this crust, they will be in the gardens of the royal palace, in the
heart of the Emerald City. I offered to arm all my Winkies and march
to Ozma's assistance; but she said no."

"I wonder why?" asked Dorothy.

"She answered that all the inhabitants of Oz, gathered together, were
not powerful enough to fight and overcome the evil forces of the Nome
King. Therefore she refuses to fight at all."

"But they will capture and enslave us, and plunder and ruin all our
lovely land!" exclaimed the Wizard, greatly disturbed by this statement.

"I fear they will," said the Tin Woodman, sorrowfully. "And I also
fear 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 speedily
put to death by the conquerors."

"What can be done?" asked Dorothy, shuddering a little at the prospect
of 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
to return to the Emerald City and share Ozma's fate. So they started
without loss of time, and as the road led past the Scarecrow's new
mansion they determined to make a brief halt there and confer with him.

"The Scarecrow is probably the wisest man in all Oz," remarked the Tin
Woodman, when they had started upon their journey. "His brains are
plentiful and of excellent quality, and often he has told me things I
might never have thought of myself. I must say I rely a great deal
upon the Scarecrow's brains in this emergency."

The Tin Woodman rode on the front seat of the wagon, where Dorothy sat
between him and the Wizard.

"Has the Scarecrow heard of Ozma's trouble?" asked the Captain General.

"I do not know, sir," was the reply.

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