16. The Magic Art of the Great Humbug
Next morning the Scarecrow said to his friends:
''Congratulate me. I am going to Oz to get my brains at last. When I return I
shall be as other men are.''
''I have always liked you as you were,'' said Dorothy simply.
''It is kind of you to like a Scarecrow,'' he replied. ''But surely you will
think more of me when you hear the splendid thoughts my new brain is going to turn
out.'' Then he said Good-bye to them all in a cheerful voice and went to the Throne
Room, where he rapped upon the door.
''Come in,'' said Oz.
The Scarecrow went in and found the little man sitting down by the window, engaged
in deep thought.
''I have come for my brains,'' remarked the Scarecrow, a little uneasily.
''Oh, yes; sit down in that chair, please,'' replied Oz. ''You must excuse me
for taking your head off, but I shall have to do it in order to put your brains
in their proper place.''
''That's all right,'' said the Scarecrow. ''You are quite welcome to take my
head off, as long as it will be a better one when you put it on again.''
So the Wizard unfastened his head and emptied out the straw. Then he entered
the back room and took up a measure of bran, which he mixed with a great many pins
and needles. Having shaken them together thoroughly, he filled the top of the Scarecrow's
head with the mixture and stuffed the rest of the space with straw, to hold it in
When he had fastened the Scarecrow's head on his body again he said to him, ''Hereafter
you will be a great man, for I have given you a lot of bran - new brains.''
The Scarecrow was both pleased and proud at the fulfillment of his greatest wish,
and having thanked Oz warmly he went back to his friends.
Dorothy looked at him curiously. His head was quite bulged out at the top with
''How do you feel?'' she asked.
''I feel wise indeed,'' he answered earnestly. ''When I get used to my brains
I shall know everything.''
''Why are those needles and pins sticking out of your head?'' asked the Tin Woodman.
''That is proof that he is sharp,'' remarked the Lion.
''Well, I must go to Oz and get my heart,'' said the Woodman. So he walked to
the Throne Room and knocked at the door.
''Come in,'' called Oz, and the Woodman entered and said, ''I have come for my
''Very well,'' answered the little man. ''But I shall have to cut a hole in your
breast, so I can put your heart in the right place. I hope it won't hurt you.''
''Oh, no,'' answered the Woodman. ''I shall not feel it at all.''
So Oz brought a pair of tinsmith's shears and cut a small, square hole in the
left side of the Tin Woodman's breast. Then, going to a chest of drawers, he took
out a pretty heart, made entirely of silk and stuffed with sawdust.
''Isn't it a beauty?'' he asked.
''It is, indeed!'' replied the Woodman, who was greatly pleased. ''But is it
a kind heart?''
''Oh, very!'' answered Oz. He put the heart in the Woodman's breast and then
replaced the square of tin, soldering it neatly together where it had been cut.
''There,'' said he; ''now you have a heart that any man might be proud of. I'm
sorry I had to put a patch on your breast, but it really couldn't be helped.''
''Never mind the patch,'' exclaimed the happy Woodman. ''I am very grateful to
you, and shall never forget your kindness.''
''Don't speak of it,'' replied Oz.
Then the Tin Woodman went back to his friends, who wished him every joy on account
of his good fortune.
The Lion now walked to the Throne Room and knocked at the door.
''Come in,'' said Oz.
''I have come for my courage,'' announced the Lion, entering the room.
''Very well,'' answered the little man; ''I will get it for you.''
He went to a cupboard and reaching up to a high shelf took down a square green
bottle, the contents of which he poured into a green - gold dish, beautifully carved.
Placing this before the Cowardly Lion, who sniffed at it as if he did not like it,
the Wizard said:
''What is it?'' asked the Lion.
''Well,'' answered Oz, ''if it were inside of you, it would be courage. You know,
of course, that courage is always inside one; so that this really cannot be called
courage until you have swallowed it. Therefore I advise you to drink it as soon
The Lion hesitated no longer, but drank till the dish was empty.
''How do you feel now?'' asked Oz.
''Full of courage,'' replied the Lion, who went joyfully back to his friends
to tell them of his good fortune.
Oz, left to himself, smiled to think of his success in giving the Scarecrow and
the Tin Woodman and the Lion exactly what they thought they wanted. ''How can I
help being a humbug,'' he said, ''when all these people make me do things that everybody
knows can't be done? It was easy to make the Scarecrow and the Lion and the Woodman
happy, because they imagined I could do anything. But it will take more than imagination
to carry Dorothy back to Kansas, and I'm sure I don't know how it can be done.''
17. How the Balloon Was Launched
For three days Dorothy heard nothing from Oz. These were sad days for the little
girl, although her friends were all quite happy and contented. The Scarecrow told
them there were wonderful thoughts in his head; but he would not say what they were
because he knew no one could understand them but himself. When the Tin Woodman walked
about he felt his heart rattling around in his breast; and he told Dorothy he had
discovered it to be a kinder and more tender heart than the one he had owned when
he was made of flesh. The Lion declared he was afraid of nothing on earth, and would
gladly face an army or a dozen of the fierce Kalidahs.
Thus each of the little party was satisfied except Dorothy, who longed more than
ever to get back to Kansas.
On the fourth day, to her great joy, Oz sent for her, and when she entered the
Throne Room he greeted her pleasantly:
''Sit down, my dear; I think I have found the way to get you out of this country.''
''And back to Kansas?'' she asked eagerly.
''Well, I'm not sure about Kansas,'' said Oz, ''for I haven't the faintest notion
which way it lies. But the first thing to do is to cross the desert, and then it
should be easy to find your way home.''
''How can I cross the desert?'' she inquired.
''Well, I'll tell you what I think,'' said the little man. ''You see, when I
came to this country it was in a balloon. You also came through the air, being carried
by a cyclone. So I believe the best way to get across the desert will be through
the air. Now, it is quite beyond my powers to make a cyclone; but I've been thinking
the matter over, and I believe I can make a balloon.''
''How?'' asked Dorothy.
''A balloon,'' said Oz, ''is made of silk, which is coated with glue to keep
the gas in it. I have plenty of silk in the Palace, so it will be no trouble to
make the balloon. But in all this country there is no gas to fill the balloon with,
to make it float.''
''If it won't float,'' remarked Dorothy, ''it will be of no use to us.''
''True,'' answered Oz. ''But there is another way to make it float, which is
to fill it with hot air. Hot air isn't as good as gas, for if the air should get
cold the balloon would come down in the desert, and we should be lost.''
''We!'' exclaimed the girl. ''Are you going with me?''
''Yes, of course,'' replied Oz. ''I am tired of being such a humbug. If I should
go out of this Palace my people would soon discover I am not a Wizard, and then
they would be vexed with me for having deceived them. So I have to stay shut up
in these rooms all day, and it gets tiresome. I'd much rather go back to Kansas
with you and be in a circus again.''
''I shall be glad to have your company,'' said Dorothy.
''Thank you,'' he answered. ''Now, if you will help me sew the silk together,
we will begin to work on our balloon.''
So Dorothy took a needle and thread, and as fast as Oz cut the strips of silk
into proper shape the girl sewed them neatly together. First there was a strip of
light green silk, then a strip of dark green and then a strip of emerald green;
for Oz had a fancy to make the balloon in different shades of the color about them.
It took three days to sew all the strips together, but when it was finished they
had a big bag of green silk more than twenty feet long.