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|Rinkitink In Oz||L. Frank Baum|
The Captive King
|Page 2 of 3||
"And what now?" asked Rinkitink.
"Now, Your Majesty, you must come home with us, like a good and dutiful King, and rule over your people," declared the man in a firm voice.
"I will not."
"But you must -- begging Your Majesty's pardon for the contradiction."
"Kitticut," cried poor Rinkitink, "you must save me from being captured by these, my subjects. What! must I return to Gilgad and be forced to reign in splendid state when I much prefer to eat and sleep and sing in my own quiet way? They will make me sit in a throne three hours a day and listen to dry and tedious affairs of state; and I must stand up for hours at the court receptions, till I get corns on my heels; and forever must I listen to tiresome speeches and endless petitions and complaints!"
"But someone must do this, Your Majesty," said Pinkerbloo respectfully, "and since you were born to be our King you cannot escape your duty."
"'Tis a horrid fate!" moaned Rinkitink. "I would die willingly, rather than be a King -- if it did not hurt so terribly to die."
"You will find it much more comfortable to reign than to die, although I fully appreciate Your Majesty's difficult position and am truly sorry for you," said Pinkerbloo.
King Kitticut had listened to this conversation thoughtfully, so now he said to his friend:
"The man is right, dear Rinkitink. It is your duty to reign, since fate has made you a King, and I see no honorable escape for you. I shall grieve to lose your companionship, but I feel the separation cannot be avoided."
"Then," said he, turning to Lord Pinkerbloo, "in three days I will depart with you for Gilgad; but during those three days I propose to feast and make merry with my good friend King Kitticut."
Then all the people of Gilgad shouted with delight and eagerly scrambled ashore to take their part in the festival.
Those three days were long remembered in Pingaree, for never -- before nor since -- has such feasting and jollity been known upon that island. Rinkitink made the most of his time and everyone laughed and sang with him by day and by night.
Then, at last, the hour of parting arrived and the King of Gilgad and Ruler of the Dominion of Rinkitink was escorted by a grand procession to his boat and seated upon his golden throne. The rowers of the fifty boats paused, with their glittering oars pointed into the air like gigantic uplifted sabres, while the people of Pingaree -- men, women and children -- stood upon the shore shouting a royal farewell to the jolly King.
Then came a sudden hush, while Rinkitink stood up and, with a bow to those assembled to witness his departure, sang the following song, which he had just composed for the occasion.
"Farewell, dear Isle of Pingaree --
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|Rinkitink In Oz
L. Frank Baum
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