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|The Patchwork Girl of Oz||L. Frank Baum|
The Captive Yoop
|Page 1 of 4||
As they were preparing to leave, Dorothy asked: "Can you tell us where there is a dark well?"
"Never heard of such a thing," said the Tottenhot. "We live our lives in the dark, mostly, and sleep in the day-time; but we've never seen a dark well, or anything like one."
"Does anyone live on those mountains beyond here?" asked the Scarecrow.
"Lots of people. But you'd better not visit them. We never go there," was the reply.
"What are the people like?" Dorothy inquired.
"Can't say. We've been told to keep away from the mountain paths, and so we obey. This sandy desert is good enough for us, and we're not disturbed here," declared the Tottenhot.
So they left the man snuggling down to sleep in his dusky dwelling, and went out into the sunshine, taking the path that led toward the rocky places. They soon found it hard climbing, for the rocks were uneven and full of sharp points and edges, and now there was no path at all. Clambering here and there among the boulders they kept steadily on, gradually rising higher and higher until finally they came to a great rift in a part of the mountain, where the rock seemed to have split in two and left high walls on either side.
"S'pose we go this way," suggested Dorothy; it's much easier walking than to climb over the hills."
"How about that sign?" asked Ojo.
"What sign?" she inquired.
The Munchkin boy pointed to some words painted on the wall of rock beside them, which Dorothy had not noticed. The words read:
"LOOK OUT FOR YOOP."
The girl eyed this sign a moment and turned to the Scarecrow, asking:
"Who is Yoop; or what is Yoop?"
The straw man shook his head. Then looked at Toto and the dog said "Woof!"
"Only way to find out is to go on, Scraps."
This being quite true, they went on. As they proceeded, the walls of rock on either side grew higher and higher. Presently they came upon another sign which read:
"BEWARE THE CAPTIVE YOOP."
"Why, as for that," remarked Dorothy, "if Yoop is a captive there's no need to beware of him. Whatever Yoop happens to be, I'd much rather have him a captive than running around loose."
"So had I," agreed the Scarecrow, with a nod of his painted head.
"Still," said Scraps, reflectively:
"Dear me! Aren't you feeling a little queer, just now?" Dorothy asked the Patchwork Girl.
"Not queer, but crazy," said Ojo. "When she says those things I'm sure her brains get mixed somehow and work the wrong way.
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|The Patchwork Girl of Oz
L. Frank Baum
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