The Road to Oz HTML version

3. A Queer Village
Button-Bright took the shaggy man's hand willingly; for the shaggy man had the Love
Magnet, you know, which was the reason Button-Bright had loved him at once. They
started on, with Dorothy on one side, and Toto on the other, the little party trudging along
more cheerfully than you might have supposed. The girl was getting used to queer
adventures, which interested her very much. Wherever Dorothy went Toto was sure to
go, like Mary's little lamb. Button-Bright didn't seem a bit afraid or worried because he
was lost, and the shaggy man had no home, perhaps, and was as happy in one place as in
Before long they saw ahead of them a fine big arch spanning the road, and when they
came nearer they found that the arch was beautifully carved and decorated with rich
colors. A row of peacocks with spread tails ran along the top of it, and all the feathers
were gorgeously painted. In the center was a large fox's head, and the fox wore a shrewd
and knowing expression and had large spectacles over its eyes and a small golden crown
with shiny points on top of its head.
While the travelers were looking with curiosity at this beautiful arch there suddenly
marched out of it a company of soldiers--only the soldiers were all foxes dressed in
uniforms. They wore green jackets and yellow pantaloons, and their little round caps and
their high boots were a bright red color. Also, there was a big red bow tied about the
middle of each long, bushy tail. Each soldier was armed with a wooden sword having an
edge of sharp teeth set in a row, and the sight of these teeth at first caused Dorothy to
A captain marched in front of the company of fox-soldiers, his uniform embroidered with
gold braid to make it handsomer than the others.
Almost before our friends realized it the soldiers had surrounded them on all sides, and
the captain was calling out in a harsh voice:
"Surrender! You are our prisoners."
"What's a pris'ner?" asked Button-Bright.
"A prisoner is a captive," replied the fox-captain, strutting up and down with much
"What's a captive?" asked Button-Bright.
"You're one," said the captain.
That made the shaggy man laugh