Книга Ozma of Oz. Содержание - 20. The Emerald City
You may be sure the royal children of Ev and their Queen mother were delighted at seeing again their beloved country; and when the towers of the palace of Ev came into view they could not forbear cheering at the sight. Little Evring, riding in front of Dorothy, was so overjoyed that he took a curious tin whistle from his pocket and blew a shrill blast that made the Sawhorse leap and prance in sudden alarm.
“What is that?” asked Billina, who had been obliged to flutter her wings in order to keep her seat upon the head of the frightened Sawhorse.
“That’s my whistle,” said Prince Evring, holding it out upon his hand.
It was in the shape of a little fat pig, made of tin and painted green. The whistle was in the tail of the pig.
“Where did you get it?” asked the yellow hen, closely examining the toy with her bright eyes.
“Why, I picked it up in the Nome King’s palace, while Dorothy was making her guesses, and I put it in my pocket,” answered the little Prince.
Billina laughed; or at least she made the peculiar cackle that served her for a laugh.
“No wonder I couldn’t find the Tin Woodman,” she said; “and no wonder the magic belt didn’t make him appear, or the King couldn’t find him, either!”
“What do you mean?” questioned Dorothy.
“Why, the Prince had him in his pocket,” cried Billina, cackling again.
“I did not!” protested little Evring. “I only took the whistle.”
“Well, then, watch me,” returned the hen, and reaching out a claw she touched the whistle and said “Ev.”
“Good afternoon,” said the Tin Woodman, taking off his funnel cap and bowing to Dorothy and the Prince. “I think I must have been asleep for the first time since I was made of tin, for I do not remember our leaving the Nome King.”
“You have been enchanted,” answered the girl, throwing an arm around her old friend and hugging him tight in her joy. “But it’s all right, now.”
“I want my whistle!” said the little Prince, beginning to cry.
“Hush!” cautioned Billina. “The whistle is lost, but you may have another when you get home.”
The Scarecrow had fairly thrown himself upon the bosom of his old comrade, so surprised and delighted was he to see him again, and Tiktok squeezed the Tin Woodman’s hand so earnestly that he dented some of his fingers. Then they had to make way for Ozma to welcome the tin man, and the army caught sight of him and set up a cheer, and everybody was delighted and happy.
For the Tin Woodman was a great favorite with all who knew him, and his sudden recovery after they had thought he was lost to them forever was indeed a pleasant surprise.
Before long the cavalcade arrived at the royal palace, where a great crowd of people had gathered to welcome their Queen and her ten children. There was much shouting and cheering, and the people threw flowers in their path, and every face wore a happy smile.
They found the Princess Langwidere in her mirrored chamber, where she was admiring one of her handsomest heads – one with rich chestnut hair, dreamy walnut eyes and a shapely hickorynut nose. She was very glad to be relieved of her duties to the people of Ev, and the Queen graciously permitted her to retain her rooms and her cabinet of heads as long as she lived.
Then the Queen took her eldest son out upon a balcony that overlooked the crowd of subjects gathered below, and said to them:
“Here is your future ruler, King Evardo Fifteenth. He is fifteen years of age, has fifteen silver buckles on his jacket and is the fifteenth Evardo to rule the land of Ev.”
The people shouted their approval fifteen times, and even the Wheelers, some of whom were present, loudly promised to obey the new King.
So the Queen placed a big crown of gold, set with rubies, upon Evardo’s head, and threw an ermine robe over his shoulders, and proclaimed him King; and he bowed gratefully to all his subjects and then went away to see if he could find any cake in the royal pantry.
Ozma of Oz and her people, as well as Dorothy, Tiktok and Billina, were splendidly entertained by the Queen mother, who owed all her happiness to their kind offices; and that evening the yellow hen was publicly presented with a beautiful necklace of pearls and sapphires, as a token of esteem from the new King.
20. The Emerald City
Dorothy decided to accept Ozma’s invitation to return with her to the Land of Oz. There was no greater chance of her getting home from Ev than from Oz, and the little girl was anxious to see once more the country where she had encountered such wonderful adventures. By this time Uncle Henry would have reached Australia in his ship, and had probably given her up for lost; so he couldn’t worry any more than he did if she stayed away from him a while longer. So she would go to Oz.
They bade good-bye to the people of Ev, and the King promised Ozma that he would ever be grateful to her and render the Land of Oz any service that might lie within his power.
And then they approached the edge of the dangerous desert, and Ozma threw down the magic carpet, which at once unrolled far enough for all of them to walk upon it without being crowded.
Tiktok, claiming to be Dorothy’s faithful follower because he belonged to her, had been permitted to join the party, and before they started the girl wound up his machinery as far as possible, and the copper man stepped off as briskly as any one of them.
Ozma also invited Billina to visit the Land of Oz, and the yellow hen was glad enough to go where new sights and scenes awaited her.
They began the trip across the desert early in the morning, and as they stopped only long enough for Billina to lay her daily egg, before sunset they espied the green slopes and wooded hills of the beautiful Land of Oz. They entered it in the Munchkin territory, and the King of the Munchkins met them at the border and welcomed Ozma with great respect, being very pleased by her safe return. For Ozma of Oz ruled the King of the Munchkins, the King of the Winkies, the King of the Quadlings and the King of the Gillikins just as those kings ruled their own people; and this supreme ruler of the Land of Oz lived in a great town of her own, called the Emerald City, which was in the exact center of the four kingdoms of the Land of Oz.
The Munchkin king entertained them at his palace that night, and in the morning they set out for the Emerald City, travelling over a road of yellow brick that led straight to the jewel-studded gates. Everywhere the people turned out to greet their beloved Ozma, and to hail joyfully the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman and the Cowardly Lion, who were popular favorites. Dorothy, too, remembered some of the people, who had befriended her on the occasion of her first visit to Oz, and they were well pleased to see the little Kansas girl again, and showered her with compliments and good wishes.
At one place, where they stopped to refresh themselves, Ozma accepted a bowl of milk from the hands of a pretty dairy-maid. Then she looked at the girl more closely, and exclaimed:
“Why, it’s Jinjur – isn’t it!”
“Yes, your Highness,” was the reply, as Jinjur dropped a low curtsy. And Dorothy looked wonderingly at this lively appearing person, who had once assembled an army of women and driven the Scarecrow from the throne of the Emerald City, and even fought a battle with the powerful army of Glinda the Sorceress.
“I’ve married a man who owns nine cows,” said Jinjur to Ozma, “and now I am happy and contented and willing to lead a quiet life and mind my own business.”
“Where is your husband?” asked Ozma.
“He is in the house, nursing a black eye,” replied Jinjur, calmly. “The foolish man would insist upon milking the red cow when I wanted him to milk the white one; but he will know better next time, I am sure.”