HOW THE ADVENTURERS RETURNED HOME

 

By Jared Davis

 

A supplement to "The Queer Visitors from the Marvelous Land of Oz" newspaper strips and The Woggle-Bug Book by L. Frank Baum. This story was first written in 2002.  It takes place in early 1905.
 


  "
I believe," the Scarecrow said, "I've had enough of America."


  "Yes," responded the Tin Woodman," and it will be Spring soon, and I'd rather see the yellow fields of the Winkies than the gravel and concrete roads of the United States."


  "America was fun when we were new to it," admitted the Pumpkinhead. "Now we blend in too much."


  "I've discovered too much about America," remarked the Woggle-Bug. "The only thing I like is the fashionable material from which ladies and tailors make their clothing."


  "How ever did you fancy that?" grunted the Sawhorse, regarding the large insect's necktie, made with loud Wagnerian Plaids.


  "It 'woggles,' like me." returned the insect. No one tried to guess what he meant, and this part of the discussion was discarded immediately.


  "I'm looking forward to re-retirement." snorted the Gump. He had been retired, once, but when the Scarecrow's group of adventurers set out, he was "forced" out of retirement.

 

"There's no place like home," the conglomerate creature concluded.


  And the rest of the party agreed unanimously.



Some people were glad to see the party from Oz return home, others were sorry, but the visitors could not be stopped.

 

"You know," said the Scarecrow, "it would break Dorothy's heart for us to leave without saying goodbye to her first."

 

"Why, you're right, friend Scarecrow," agreed the Tin Woodman, "with the heart the Wizard gave me, I should've thought of that myself."

 

"No doubt you would have," replied the Scarecrow.


"Here we go again," said the Gump, as he turned around, now heading towards Kansas.

 

As they approached the Gale farmhouse, they spotted a little girl holding a suitcase and parasol, which she waved at them.


  It was Dorothy.


  "They said in the newspaper you were leavin'. I'm comin' too, right?" she asked, excitedly.


  "Dorothy," returned the Scarecrow, "Why?"


  "I want to visit Oz again," she said, "and then the Gump could take me home."


  "Now look here, young lady!" snorted the Gump. "I'm being retired after this flight!"


  "Then I could live with you?" inquired the girl.


  "No," responded the Tin Woodman, "Your place is with your Aunt Em and Uncle Henry."


  "And Toto," put in the Scarecrow. "Don't forget him!"


  "Anyways," continued the Tin Woodman, "They need you now, and it would break Aunt Em's heart to lose you."


  "I hadn't thought of that." said Dorothy. "I s'pose I was bein' selfish. Nobody believes you're real. They think you're some kind of public'ty stunt."

 

"I'm sure we'll see each other again," said the Scarecrow, comfortingly, to which the Tin Woodman and Pumpkinhead agreed.


  "Let's go," said the Gump, "before she wants to bring her uncle, aunt, and dog along, too."


  "Good-bye, Dorothy." concluded Nick Chopper.


  Dorothy was crying now, and she hugged the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, the Woggle-Bug (for he alone had caused so much excitement among the American citizens), and even the wooden forms of Jack and the Sawhorse. Then she waved good-bye as the visitors climbed into the Gump, which quickly rose into the air.


  Soon, Dorothy was just a speck on the ground as the Gump mounted higher into the air. The rest of the trip was made in silence.

 

To lighten the mood, Jack Pumpkinhead began telling stories from his time in America.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 

After a long while, Jack noticed something.


  "Look below us," he said.


  The rest of the group put their heads over the sides of the flying animal. Below them were the domes and towers of the Emerald City.


  The Gump descended and soon alighted on the ground, and Ozma came out of her palace to greet them.


  "Welcome home," she said. "We've missed you in the land of Oz, and now that you're back, I want to hear of your adventures."


  "There's one thing that I want to tell you now." said Jack. "I think we should ab-ab, uhh, what's that word? Admonish?"


  "I believe you mean abolish," put in the Woggle-Bug.


  "Oh, yes, abolish," continued Jack. "I think we should abolish money from the land of Oz entirely. We had a lot of trouble concerning money in America, and it really makes people proud and haughty. We shouldn't have money for status, we should use love and kindness."


  "People must work hard for money," agreed the Woggle-Bug, "and the money is spent too quickly. It's futility!"


  "We all were thoroughly disgusted at money," put in the Sawhorse. "I was almost lost for good because of it."


  "Jack's plan is wise," replied Ozma, smiling. "I will see that it's enforced."


  So the people who had left Oz had returned.

 

The Woggle-Bug began an Athletic College in the Munchkin Country, while Jack and the Sawhorse hung around the Emerald City, and the Gump was 're-retired, but Ozma had something to consult the Scarecrow and Tin Woodman about.

 

But that's such a long and complicated story, that it has been told in another book.


THE END
İMike Ploog

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