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|The Emerald City of Oz||L. Frank Baum|
19. How Bunnybury Welcomed the Strangers
|Page 1 of 4||
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:
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Pretty soon a bolt was cautiously withdrawn and the marble door swung slowly open.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.
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|The Emerald City of Oz
L. Frank Baum
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