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|Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz||L. Frank Baum|
Ozma Uses the Magic Belt
|Page 2 of 6||
They did not realize their ill fortune at first, for their hearts were gladdened by the sight of a ray of sunshine coming through a small crack in the roof of the cave, far overhead. That meant that their world--the real world--was not very far away, and that the succession of perilous adventures they had encountered had at last brought them near the earth's surface, which meant home to them. But when the adventurers looked more carefully around them they discovered that there were in a strong prison from which there was no hope of escape.
"But we're ALMOST on earth again," cried Dorothy, "for there is the sun--the most BEAU'FUL sun that shines!" and she pointed eagerly at the crack in the distant roof.
"Almost on earth isn't being there," said the kitten, in a discontented tone. "It wouldn't be possible for even me to get up to that crack--or through it if I got there."
"It appears that the path ends here," announced the Wizard, gloomily.
"And there is no way to go back," added Zeb, with a low whistle of perplexity.
"I was sure it would come to this, in the end," remarked the old cab-horse. "Folks don't fall into the middle of the earth and then get back again to tell of their adventures--not in real life. And the whole thing has been unnatural because that cat and I are both able to talk your language, and to understand the words you say."
"And so can the nine tiny piglets," added Eureka. "Don't forget them, for I may have to eat them, after all."
"I've heard animals talk before," said Dorothy, "and no harm came of it."
"Were you ever before shut up in a cave, far under the earth, with no way of getting out?" enquired the horse, seriously.
"No," answered Dorothy. "But don't you lose heart, Jim, for I'm sure this isn't the end of our story, by any means."
The reference to the piglets reminded the Wizard that his pets had not enjoyed much exercise lately, and must be tired of their prison in his pocket. So he sat down upon the floor of the cave, brought the piglets out one by one, and allowed them to run around as much as they pleased.
"My dears," he said to them, "I'm afraid I've got you into a lot of trouble, and that you will never again be able to leave this gloomy cave."
"What's wrong?" asked a piglet. "We've been in the dark quite a while, and you may as well explain what has happened."
The Wizard told them of the misfortune that had overtaken the wanderers.
"Well," said another piglet, "you are a wizard, are you not?"
"I am," replied the little man.
"Then you can do a few wizzes and get us out of this hole," declared the tiny one, with much confidence.
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|Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz
L. Frank Baum
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