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The Tin Woodman of Oz

1. Woot the Wanderer
The Tin Woodman sat on his glittering tin throne in the handsome tin hall of his splendid
tin castle in the Winkie Country of the Land of Oz. Beside him, in a chair of woven
straw, sat his best friend, the Scarecrow of Oz. At times they spoke to one another of
curious things they had seen and strange adventures they had known since first they two
had met and become comrades. But at times they were silent, for these things had been
talked over many times between them, and they found themselves contented in merely
being together, speaking now and then a brief sentence to prove they were wide awake
and attentive. But then, these two quaint persons never slept. Why should they sleep,
when they never tired?
And now, as the brilliant sun sank low over the Winkie Country of Oz, tinting the
glistening tin towers and tin minarets of the tin castle with glorious sunset hues, there
approached along a winding pathway Woot the Wanderer, who met at the castle entrance
a Winkie servant.
The servants of the Tin Woodman all wore tin helmets and tin breastplates and uniforms
covered with tiny tin discs sewed closely together on silver cloth, so that their bodies
sparkled as beautifully as did the tin castle -- and almost as beautifully as did the Tin
Woodman himself.
Woot the Wanderer looked at the man servant --all bright and glittering -- and at the
magnificent castle -- all bright and glittering -- and as he looked his eyes grew big with
wonder. For Woot was not very big and not very old and, wanderer though he was, this
proved the most gorgeous sight that had ever met his boyish gaze.
"Who lives here?" he asked.
"The Emperor of the Winkies, who is the famous Tin Woodman of Oz," replied the
servant, who had been trained to treat all strangers with courtesy.
"A Tin Woodman? How queer!" exclaimed the little wanderer.
"Well, perhaps our Emperor is queer," admitted the servant; "but he is a kind master and
as honest and true as good tin can make him; so we, who gladly serve him, are apt to
forget that he is not like other people."
"May I see him?" asked Woot the Wanderer, after a moment's thought.
"If it please you to wait a moment, I will go and ask him," said the servant, and then he
went into the hall where the Tin Woodman sat with his friend the Scarecrow. Both were
glad to learn that a stranger had arrived at the castle, for this would give them something
new to talk about, so the servant was asked to admit the boy at once.
 
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