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Chapter 15 – The Flight of the Rulers

L. Frank BaumOct 04, 2016'Command+D' Bookmark this page

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Now it seems that when Queen Cor fled from her island
to Regos, she had wit enough, although greatly frightened,
to make a stop at the royal dairy, which was near
to the bridge, and to drag poor Queen Garee from the
butter-house and across to Regos with her. The warriors
of King Gos had never before seen the terrible Queen
Cor frightened, and therefore when she came running
across the bridge of boats, dragging the Queen of
Pingaree after her by one arm, the woman’s great fright
had the effect of terrifying the waiting warriors.

“Quick!” cried Cor. “Destroy the bridge, or we are
lost.”

While the men were tearing away the bridge of boats
the Queen ran up to the palace of Gos, where she met
her husband.

“That boy is a wizard!” she gasped. “There is no
standing against him.”

“Oh, have you discovered his magic at last?” replied
Gos, laughing in her face. “Who, now, is the coward?”

“Don’t laugh!” cried Queen Cor. “It is no laughing
matter. Both our islands are as good as conquered, this
very minute. What shall we do, Gos?”

“Come in,” he said, growing serious, “and let us talk
it over.”

So they went into a room of the palace and talked
long and earnestly.

“The boy intends to liberate his father and mother,
and all the people of Pingaree, and to take them back
to their island,” said Cor. “He may also destroy our
palaces and make us his slaves. I can see but one way,
Gos, to prevent him from doing all this, and whatever
else he pleases to do.”

“What way is that?” asked King Gos.

“We must take the boy’s parents away from here as
quickly as possible. I have with me the Queen of
Pingaree, and you can run up to the mines and get the
King. Then we will carry them away in a boat and hide
them where the boy cannot find them, with all his
magic. We will use the King and Queen of Pingaree as
hostages, and send word to the boy wizard that if he
does not go away from our islands and allow us to rule
them undisturbed, in our own way, we will put his
father and mother to death. Also we will say that as
long as we are let alone his parents will be safe,
although still safely hidden. I believe, Gos, that in
this way we can compel Prince Ingato obey us, for he
seems very fond of his parents.”

“It isn’t a bad idea,” said Gos, reflectively; “but
where can we hide the King and Queen, so that the boy
cannot find them?”

“In the country of the Nome King, on the mainland
away at the south,” she replied. “The nomes are our
friends, and they possess magic powers that will enable
them to protect the prisoners from discovery. If we can
manage to get the King and Queen of Pingaree to the
Nome Kingdom before the boy knows what we are doing, I
am sure our plot will succeed.”

Gos gave the plan considerable thought in the next
five minutes, and the more he thought about it the more
clever and reasonable it seemed. So he agreed to do as
Queen Cor suggested and at once hurried away to the
mines, where he arrived before Prince Inga did. The
next morning he carried King Kitticut back to Regos.

While Gos was gone, Queen Cor busied herself in
preparing a large and swift boat for the journey. She
placed in it several bags of gold and jewels with which
to bribe the nomes, and selected forty of the strongest
oarsmen in Regos to row the boat. The instant King Gos
returned with his royal prisoner all was ready for
departure. They quickly entered the boat with their two
important captives and without a word of explanation to
any of their people they commanded the oarsmen to
start, and were soon out of sight upon the broad
expanse of the Nonestic Ocean.

Inga arrived at the city some hours later and was
much distressed when he learned that his father and
mother had been spirited away from the islands.

“I shall follow them, of course,” said the boy to
Rinkitink, “and if I cannot overtake them on the ocean
I will search the world over until I find them. But
before I leave here I must arrange to send our people
back to Pingaree.”

 

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