FictionForest

Chapter 21 – The Wizard Finds an Enchantment

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

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After Kaliko had failed in his attempts to destroy his
guests, as has been related, the Nome King did nothing
more to injure them but treated them in a friendly
manner. He refused, however, to permit Inga to see or
to speak with his father and mother, or even to know in
what part of the underground caverns they were
confined.

“You are able to protect your lives and persons, I
freely admit,” said Kaliko; “but I firmly believe you
have no power, either of magic or otherwise, to take
from me the captives I have agreed to keep for King
Gos.”

Inga would not agree to this. He determined not to
leave the caverns until he had liberated his father and
mother, although he did not then know how that could be
accomplished. As for Rinkitink, the jolly King was well
fed and had a good bed to sleep upon, so he was not
worrying about anything and seemed in no hurry to go
away.

Kaliko and Rinkitink were engaged in pitching a game
with solid gold quoits, on the floor of the royal
chamber, and Inga and Bilbil were watching them, when
Klik came running in, his hair standing on end with
excitement, and cried out that the Wizard of Oz and
Dorothy were approaching.

Kaliko turned pale on hearing this unwelcome news
and, abandoning his game, went to sit in his ivory
throne and try to think what had brought these fearful
visitors to his domain.

“Who is Dorothy?” asked Inga.

“She is a little girl who once lived in Kansas,”
replied Klik, with a shudder, “but she now lives in
Ozma’s palace at the Emerald City and is a Princess of
Oz — which means that she is a terrible foe to deal
with.”

“Doesn’t she like the nomes?” inquired the boy.

“It isn’t that,” said King Kaliko, with a groan, “but
she insists on the nomes being goody-goody, which is
contrary to their natures. Dorothy gets angry if I do
the least thing that is wicked, and tries to make me
stop it, and that naturally makes me downhearted. I
can’t imagine why she has come here just now, for I’ve
been behaving very well lately. As for that Wizard of
Oz, he’s chock-full of magic that I can’t overcome, for
he learned it from Glinda, who is the most powerful
sorceress in the world. Woe is me! Why didn’t Dorothy
and the Wizard stay in Oz, where they belong?”

Inga and Rinkitink listened to this with much joy,
for at once the idea came to them both to plead with
Dorothy to help them. Even Bilbil pricked up his ears
when he heard the Wizard of Oz mentioned, and the goat
seemed much less surly, and more thoughtful than usual.

A few minutes later a nome came to say that Dorothy
and the Wizard had arrived and demanded admittance, so
Klik was sent to usher them into the royal presence of
the Nome King.

As soon as she came in the little girl ran up to the
boy Prince and seized both his hands.

“Oh, Inga!” she exclaimed, “I’m so glad to find you
alive and well.”

Inga was astonished at so warm a greeting. Making a
low bow he said:

“I don’t think we have met before, Princess.”

“No, indeed,” replied Dorothy, “but I know all about
you and I’ve come to help you and King Rinkitink out of
your troubles.” Then she turned to the Nome King and
continued: “You ought to be ashamed of yourself, King
Kaliko, to treat an honest Prince and an honest King so
badly.”

“I haven’t done anything to them,” whined Kaliko,
trembling as her eyes flashed upon him.

“No; but you tried to, an’ that’s just as bad, if not
worse,” said Dorothy, who was very indignant. “And now
I want you to send for the King and Queen of Pingaree
and have them brought here immejitly!”

“I won’t,” said Kaliko.

“Yes, you will!” cried Dorothy, stamping her foot at
him. “I won’t have those poor people made unhappy any
longer, or separated from their little boy. Why, it’s
dreadful, Kaliko, an’ I’m su’prised at you. You must be
more wicked than I thought you were.”

“I can’t do it, Dorothy,” said the Nome King, almost
weeping with despair. “I promised King Gos I’d keep
them captives. You wouldn’t ask me to break my promise,
would you?”

“King Gos was a robber and an outlaw,” she said, “and
p’r’aps you don’t know that a storm at sea wrecked his
boat, while he was going back to Regos, and that he and
Queen Cor were both drowned.”

“Dear me!” exclaimed Kaliko. “Is that so?”

“I saw it in Glinda’s Record Book,” said Dorothy. “So
now you trot out the King and Queen of Pingaree as
quick as you can.”

“No,” persisted the contrary Nome King, shaking his
head. “I won’t do it. Ask me anything else and I’ll try
to please you, but I can’t allow these friendly enemies
to triumph over me.

“In that case,” said Dorothy, beginning to remove the
cover from her basket, “I’ll show you some eggs.”

“Eggs!” screamed the Nome King in horror. “Have you
eggs in that basket?”

“A dozen of ’em,” replied Dorothy.

“Then keep them there — I beg — I implore you! —
and I’ll do anything you say,” pleaded Kaliko, his
teeth chattering so that he could hardly speak.

“Send for the King and Queen of Pingaree,” said
Dorothy.

“Go, Klik,” commanded the Nome King, and Klik ran
away in great haste, for he was almost as much
frightened as his master.

It was an affecting scene when the unfortunate King
and Queen of Pingaree entered the chamber and with sobs
and tears of joy embraced their brave and adventurous
son. All the others stood silent until greetings and
kisses had been exchanged and Inga had told his parents
in a few words of his vain struggles to rescue them and
how Princess Dorothy had finally come to his
assistance.

Then King Kitticut shook the hands of his friend King
Rinkitink and thanked him for so loyally supporting his
son Inga, and Queen Garee kissed little Dorothy’s
forehead and blessed her for restoring her husband and
herself to freedom.

The Wizard had been standing near Bilbil the goat and
now he was surprised to hear the animal say:

“Joyful reunion, isn’t it? But it makes me tired to
see grown people cry like children.”

“Oho!” exclaimed the Wizard. “How does it happen, Mr.
Goat, that you, who have never been to the Land of Oz,
are able to talk?”

“That’s my business,” returned Bilbil in a surly
tone.

The Wizard stooped down and gazed fixedly into the
animal’s eyes. Then he said, with a pitying sigh: “I
see; you are under an enchantment. Indeed, I believe
you to be Prince Bobo of Boboland.”

Bilbil made no reply but dropped his head as if
ashamed.

“This is a great discovery,” said the Wizard,
addressing Dorothy and the others of the party. “A good
many years ago a cruel magician transformed the gallant
Prince of Boboland into a talking goat, and this goat,
being ashamed of his condition, ran away and was never
after seen in Boboland, which is a country far to the
south of here but bordering on the Deadly Desert,
opposite the Land of Oz. I heard of this story long ago
and know that a diligent search has been made for the
enchanted Prince, without result. But I am well assured
that, in the animal you call Bilbil, I have discovered
the unhappy Prince of Boboland.”

“Dear me, Bilbil,” said Rinkitink, “why have you
never told me this?”

“What would be the use?” asked Bilbil in a low voice
and still refusing to look up.

“The use?” repeated Rinkitink, puzzled.

“Yes, that’s the trouble,” said the Wizard. “It is
one of the most powerful enchantments ever
accomplished, and the magician is now dead and the
secret of the anti-charm lost. Even I, with all my
skill, cannot restore Prince Bobo to his proper form.
But I think Glinda might be able to do so and if you
will all return with Dorothy and me to the Land of Oz,
where Ozma will make you welcome, I will ask Glinda to
try to break this enchantment.”

This was willingly agreed to, for they all welcomed
the chance to visit the famous Land of Oz. So they bade
good-bye to King Kaliko, whom Dorothy warned not to be
wicked any more if he could help it, and the entire
party returned over the Magic Carpet to the Land of Oz.
They filled the Red Wagon, which was still waiting for
them, pretty full; but the Sawhorse didn’t mind that
and with wonderful speed carried them safely to the
Emerald City.

 

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