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My - my. It was a beautiful day! The sun was sitting high in the sky and the birds were singing and mingling with the insects all across the poppy field. It wouldn't be long before we get to the Emerald City. I could just see it on the horizon.

Toto was having fun chasing the purple butterflies in the field, but nothing ever seems the way it really is. Dorothy smiled a lot, but I know she was worried. Of course she had a lot to worry about, being in a strange land and all. The lion, on the other hand, worried about everything and the scarecrow didn't have the sense to worry until it's too late. But then, being a tin man, my main concern was to stay out of the rain and, of course, getting Dorothy home safely.

I'm really glad to have met Dorothy and Toto, but my life was so much simpler before she came.

Suddenly, as we walked side by side, something caught my attention out of the corner of my eye. „Dorothy, look over to your left. Is that someone in the field waving? No, wait a minute. It's two people."

Dorothy looked in the direction I was pointing and replied, „You're right, it is two people." As they got closer, Dorothy recognized them and yelled, „It is. It's my Uncle Henry and Auntie Em." With new found gladness, she said, „Oh, I'm so happy to see them. They must have come looking for me."

Dorothy and Toto took off running toward the two figures, leaving the three of us standing on the yellow brick road. I watched as she ran across the field with her arms straight out in front of her. Her aunt and uncle didn't seem to change their pace. I thought that was strange - after all, they were looking for her, weren't they?

About half way across the field, Dorothy's dreams were shattered. The two figures started to shimmer like steam on a hot tar road. Quickly, the figures changed. It wasn't her aunt and uncle - the lone figure standing in front of her was The Wicked Witch of the West.

Suddenly the sky began to blacken and as I looked around, all I could see was winged creatures coming from all directions. We were surrounded. As they closed in on us, the witch grabbed hold of Dorothy's arm and I could hear her high pitched cackle as she laughed and said, „Now I've got you my pretty and your little dog too."

She continued to cackle as the winged things closed in. They were on top of us before I realized they were Winged Monkeys. They were ghastly things with teeth as sharp as razors and their eyes a deep purple - they looked like grapes.

As the creatures rushed toward me, I could see several of them tearing the stuffing from the scarecrow. He was screaming in terror. To the left of me, I could see these things jumping up and down on the lion as he curled himself into a tight little ball.

I raised my ax and began to swing it violently. I managed to hold them back, as I eased my way over to where my friends were being attacked. I continued to try to fortify our position, but there were just too many of them. I did, however, manage to clip a few wings before two of the creatures were able to grab my arms.

Then the two holding my arms were joined by two other monkeys that each grabbed one of my legs. The next thing I knew they were flying off in different directions and I could feel the rivets in my joints starting to give way. I couldn't believe it, but they were actually pulling me apart.

The mayhem and brutal carnage seemed to continue forever, but in reality, it was over in just a few minutes. As I looked around, I could see pieces of me scattered all over the road. The only thing left attached to my body was my head.

My field of vision was limited, but I could see that I was luckier that the scarecrow. His head was the only thing intact, with a stick poking from his neck; he looked like a tootsie pop. The road was covered with straw and clothing. I could see his eyes moving, so I called to him and asked, „Hello, scarecrow, are you able to talk."

His eyes shifted toward me and he said, „Yes, but I think I'm going to need some help to stand up."

Dorothy and the lion was out of my sight range, so I asked, „Scarecrow, can you see Dorothy or the lion? I think I can hear something in the grass behind me, but I can't quite turn my head enough."

He shifted his eyes back and forth and finally said, „No I can't see them." He raised his voice and yelled, „Dorothy, are you there? Lion, we can't see you?"

There was no reply, but I could still hear movement behind me, so I began to yell as well. „Hello, Dorothy? Hello, lion? Are you there?"

Still there was silence. Then suddenly, from the grass behind me, I could hear a muffled moan, as the lion came crawling out onto the road. He moaned again and said, „I'm here, but I think they broke my tail and one of my front legs. Is everyone else okay?"

I sighed and replied, „No, we seem to be in quite a few pieces. I was hoping you would assist us, but it doesn't look like you'll be much help. Do you see Dorothy?"

There was another moan, as the lion said, „No, but I'll take a look around."

The lion raised up as much as he could and, with his eyes blurred with tears of pain, he peered across the field. „I can see something, but I'm not sure what it is."

Moments later, Dorothy came running out of the field. As she looked around, she said, „Oh my, what a mess! Can anyone speak?"

I turned my head toward her and said, „Yes, I'm so happy to see you, but how did you get away from the witch?"

„Well she did grab me, but when she reached for my slippers, a bolt of lightning shot up and struck her hand, forcing her back. She screamed and took off on her broom, but I think she'll be back."

I looked at her feet and saw that she was still wearing the Ruby Slippers. „I'm glad the witch didn't take the slippers from you, because Glenda told me how they work. She said that if you click the heels of the Ruby Slippers three times and make a wish it'd come true. We could really us some help right now. Go ahead and try?"

Dorothy clicked her heels as she said, „I wish Glenda was here."

Nothing

„Try again, but this time really concentrate," I said.

She closed our eyes and took a deep breath. With each click of her heels, she said, „I wish Glenda was here."

We just lay there on the road for a few seconds, when suddenly, Glenda, the Good Witch of the North appeared.

„Oh my goodness," she said. „What happened here?"

„I'm afraid we ran into your sister from the west," I said. „Do you think you can give us a hand?"

Dorothy stepped closer and said, „Can you help them?"

Glenda looked around and said, „Yes, but I'll need some help." With a wave of her wand, A small cyclone formed in the middle of the road and the Wizard of Oz appeared. The three of them worked together and reassembled the scarecrow and I. As for the lion, Glenda fixed his broken bones, but his tail and front leg had to be put in a sling because of the pain.

Glenda waved her wand in the air, and then she and the Wizard disappeared as quickly as they came.

Dorothy and Toto were as happy to see us on our feet as we were. „Oh, I'm so glad to see that all three of you are okay. I thought the Wicked Witch had killed you."

She hugged the scarecrow and some of his stuffing fell to the ground. She picked it up and kissed him on the cheek, as she handed the straw to him. The lion blushed when she kissed him on the cheek. As she turned and faced me, I could see tears in her eyes. „I will miss all three of you, but you, Mr. Tin Man, will be missed the most." She threw her arms around me and kissed me on the cheek, as she said, „You're my knight in shining armor."

Dorothy knew how the shoes worked now and she knew what she had to do next. We shall miss her.