chapter twentysix of Sky Island, by L. Frank Baum...previous/next

The Blue people were by this time dazed with wonder at all the events that had transpired that eventful day, but they still had wit enough to be glad the war was over, for in war someone is likely to get hurt, and it is foolish to take such chances when one can remain quietly at home. The Blues did not especially admire the Pinkies, but it was easier to entertain them than to fight them, and above all, the Blueskins were greatly rejoiced that their wicked Boolooroo had been conquered and could no longer abuse them. So they were quite willing to obey the orders of their girl Queen and in a short time the blasts of trumpets and roll of drums and clashing of cymbals told Trot and Cap'n Bill that the Blue Bands had assembled before the palace.

So they went down and found that a great crowd of people had gathered, and these cheered Trot with much enthusiasm--which was very different from the scowls and surly looks with which they had formerly greeted their strange visitors from the Earth.

The soldiers wore their best blue uniforms and were formed before the palace in marching order, so Trot and Cap'n Bill headed the procession, and then came the soldiers--all keeping step--and then the bands, playing very loud noises on their instruments, and finally the crowd of Blue citizens waving flags and banners and shouting joyfully. In this order they proceeded to the main gate, which Trot ordered the guards to throw wide open. Then they all marched out a little way into the fields and found that the Army of Pinkies had already formed and was advancing steadily toward them.

At the head of the Pinkies were Ghip-Ghisizzle and Button-Bright, who had the parrot on his shoulder, and they were supported by Captain Coralie and Captain Tintint and Rosalie the Witch. They had decided to capture the Blue City at all hazards, that they might rescue Trot and Cap'n Bill and conquer the Boolooroo, so when from a distance they saw the Blueskins march from the gate with banners flying and bands playing, they supposed a most terrible fight was about to take place.

However, as the two forces came nearer together, Button-Bright spied Trot and Cap'n Bill standing before the enemy, and the sight astonished him considerably.

"Welcome, friends!" shouted Cap'n Bill in a loud voice; and "Welcome!" cried Trot; and "Welcome!" roared the Blue soldiers and the people of the Blue City.

"Hooray!" yelled the parrot,

"Welcome to our happy home
From which no longer will we roam!"

And then he flapped his wings and barked like a dog with pure delight, and added as fast as his bird's tongue could speak,

"One army's pink and one is blue,
But neither one is in a stew
Because the naughty Boolooroo
Is out of sight, so what we'll do
Is try to be a jolly crew
And dance and sing our too-ral-loo
And to our friends be ever true
And to our foes--"

"Stop it!" said Button-Bright, "I can't hear myself think."

The Pinkies were amazed at the strange reception of the Blues and hesitated to advance, but Trot now ran up in front of them and made a little speech. "Pinkies," said she, "your Queen has conquered the Boolooroo and is now the Queen of the Blues. All of Sky Island except the Fog Bank is now my kingdom, so I welcome my faithful Pinkies to my Blue City, where you are to be royally entertained and have a good time. The war is over an' ever'body must be sociable an' happy or I'll know the reason why!"

Now, indeed, the Pinkies raised a great shout of joy, and the Blues responded with another joyful shout, and Rosalie kissed the little girl and said she had performed wonders, and everybody shook hands with Cap'n Bill and congratulated him upon his escape, and the parrot flew to Trot's shoulder and screeched,

"The Pinkies are pink, the Blues are blue,
But Trot's the Queen, so too-ral-loo!"

When the Blueskins saw Ghip-Ghisizzle, they raised another great shout, for he was the favorite of the soldiers and very popular with all the people. But Ghip-Ghisizzle did not heed the shouting. He was looking downcast and sad, and it was easy to see he was disappointed because he had not conquered the Boolooroo himself. But the people called upon him for a speech, so he faced the Blueskins and said, "I escaped from the City because the Boolooroo tried to patch me as you all know, and the Six Snubnosed Princesses tried to marry me, which would have been a far greater misfortune. But I have recovered the Book of Royal Records, which has long been hidden in the Treasure Chamber, and by reading it I find that the Boolooroo is not your lawful Boolooroo at all, having reigned more than his three hundred years. Since last Thursday, I, Ghip-Ghisizzle, have been the lawful Boolooroo of the Blue Country, but now that you are conquered by Queen Trot, I suppose I am conquered, too, and you have no Boolooroo at all."

"Hooray!" cried the parrot.

"Here's a pretty howdy-do--
You haven't any Boolooroo!"

Trot had listened carefully to the Majordomo's speech. When he finished, she said cheerfully, "Don't worry, Sizzle dear, it'll all come right pretty soon. Now then, let's enter the City an' enjoy the grand feast that's being cooked. I'm nearly starved, myself, for this conquerin' kingdoms is hard work."

So the Pinkies and the Blues marched side by side into the City, and there was great rejoicing and music and dancing and feasting and games and merrymaking that lasted for three full days. Trot carried Rosalie and Captain Coralie and Ghip-Ghisizzle to the palace, and of course Button-Bright and Cap'n Bill were with her. They had the Royal chef serve dinner at once, and they ate in great state, seated in the Royal Banquet Hall, where they were waited on by a hundred servants. The parrot perched upon the back of Queen Trot's chair, and the girl fed it herself, being glad to have the jolly bird with her again.

After they had eaten all they could and the servants had been sent away, Trot related her adventures, telling how with the assistance of the billygoat she had turned the tables on the wicked Boolooroo. Then she gave Rosalie back her magic ring, thanking the kind Witch for all she had done for them. "And now," said she, "I want to say to Ghip-'Sizzle that jus' as soon as we can find Button-Bright's umbrel we're going to fly home again. I'll always be Queen of Sky Island, but the Pink and Blue Countries must each have a Ruler. I think I'll make 'Sizzle the Boolooroo of the Blues, but I want you to promise me, Ghip, that you'll destroy the Great Knife and its frame and clean up the room and turn it into a skating rink an' never patch anyone as long as you rule the Blueskins."

Ghip-Ghisizzle was overjoyed at the prospect of being Boolooroo of the Blues, but he looked solemn at the promise Trot exacted. "I'm not cruel," he said, "and I don't approve of patching in general, so I'll willingly destroy the Great Knife. But before I do that, I want the privilege of patching the Snubnosed Princesses to each other--mixing the six as much as possible--and then I want to patch the former Boolooroo to the billygoat, which is the same punishment he was going to inflict upon Cap'n Bill."

"No," said Trot positively. "There's been enough patching in this country, and I won't have any more of it. The old Boolooroo and the six stuck-up Princesses will be punished enough by being put out of the palace. The people don't like 'em a bit, so they'll be outcasts and wanderers, and that will make 'em sorry they were so wicked an' cruel when they were powerful. Am I right, Cap'n Bill?"

"You are, mate," replied the sailor.

"Please, Queen Trot," begged Ghip-Ghisizzle, "let me patch just the Boolooroo. It will be such a satisfaction."

"I have said no, an' I mean it," answered the girl. "You let the poor old Boolooroo alone. There's nothing that hurts so much as a come-down in life, an' I 'spect the old rascal's goin' to be pretty miser'ble by'm'by."

"What does he say to his reversal of fortune?" asked Rosalie.

"Why, I don't b'lieve he knows about it," said Trot. "Guess I'd better send for him an' tell him what's happened."

So the Captain of the Guards was given the key and told to fetch the Boolooroo from the Room of the Great Knife. The guards had a terrible struggle with the goat, which was loose in the room and still wanted to fight, but finally they subdued the animal, and then they took the Boolooroo out of the frame he was tied in and brought both him and the goat before Queen Trot, who awaited them in the throne room of the palace. When the courtiers and the people assembled saw the goat, they gave a great cheer, for the beast had helped to dethrone their wicked Ruler.

"What's goin' to happen to this tough ol' warrior, Trot?" asked Cap'n Bill. "It's my idee as he's braver than the whole Blue Army put together."

"You're right, Cap'n," she returned. "I'll have 'Sizzle make a fine yard for the goat, where he'll have plenty of blue grass to eat. An' I'll have a pretty fence put around it an' make all the people honor an' respec' him jus' as long as he lives."

"I'll gladly do that," promised the new Boolooroo, "and I'll feed the honorable goat all the shavings and leather and tin cans he can eat, besides the grass. He'll be the happiest goat in Sky Island, I assure you."

As they led the now-famous animal from the room, the Boolooroo shuddered and said, "How dare you people give orders in my palace? I'm the Boolooroo!"

"'Scuse me," said Trot. "I neglected to tell you that you're not the Boolooroo any more. We've got the Royal Record Book, an' it proves you've already ruled this country longer than you had any right to. 'Sides all that, I'm the Queen o' Sky Island--which means Queen o' the Pinkies an' Queen o' the Blues, both of 'em. So things are run as I say, an' I've made Ghip-Ghisizzle Boolooroo in your place. He'll look after this end of the Island hereafter, an' unless I'm much mistaken, he'll do it a heap better than you did."

The former Boolooroo groaned. "What's going to become of me, then?" he asked. "Am I to be patched, or what?"

"You won't be hurt," answered the girl, "but you'll have to find some other place to stay besides this palace, an' perhaps you'll enjoy workin' for a livin' by way of variety."

"Can't I take any of the treasure with me?" he pleaded.

"Not even a bird cage," said she. "Ever'thing in the palace now belongs to Ghip-Ghisizzle."

"Except the Six Snubnosed Princesses," exclaimed the new Boolooroo earnestly. "Won't you please get rid of them, too, your Majesty? Can't they be discharged?"

"Of course," said Trot. "They must go with their dear father an' mother. Isn't there some house in the City they can all live in, Ghip?"

"Why, I own a little cabin at the end of the town," said Ghip-Ghisizzle, "and I'll let them use that, as I won't need it any longer. It isn't a very pretty cabin, and the furniture is cheap and common, but I'm sure it is good enough for this wicked man and his family."

"I'll not be wicked any more," sighed the old Boolooroo. "I'll reform. It's always best to reform when it is no longer safe to remain wicked. As a private citizen, I shall be a model of deportment, because it would be dangerous to be otherwise."

Trot now sent for the Princesses, who had been weeping and wailing and fighting among themselves ever since they learned that their father had been conquered. When first they entered the throne room, they tried to be as haughty and scornful as ever, but the Blues who were assembled there all laughed at them and jeered them, for there was not a single person in all the Blue Country who loved the Princesses the least little bit.

Trot told the girls that they must go with their father to live in Ghip-Ghisizzle's little old cabin, and when they heard this dreadful decree, the six snubnosed ones began to scream and have hysterics, and between them they managed to make so much noise that no one could hear anything else. So Ghip-Ghisizzle ordered the Captain to take a file of soldiers and escort the raving beauties to their new home.

This was done, the once-royal family departing from the palace with shamed and downcast looks. Then the Room of the Great Knife was cleared of its awful furniture. The frames were split into small pieces of bluewood and the benches chopped into kindling and the immense sharp knife broken into bits. All the rubbish was piled into the square before the palace and a bonfire made of it, while the Blue people clustered around and danced and sang with joy as the blue flames devoured the dreadful instrument that had once caused them so much unhappiness.

That evening Trot gave a grand ball in her palace, to which the most important of the Pinkies and the Blueskins were invited. The combined bands of both the countries played the music, and a fine supper was served. The Pinkies would not dance with the Blues, however, nor would the Blues dance with the Pinkies. The two nations were so different in all ways that they were unable to agree at all, and several times during the evening quarrels arose and there was fighting between them, which Trot promptly checked.

"I think it would be best for us to go back to our own country as soon as possible," suggested Rosalie the Witch, "for if we stay here very long, the Blueskins may rise against us and cause the Pinkies much trouble."

"Jus' as soon as we find that umbrel," promised Trot, "we'll dive into the Fog Bank an' make tracks for the Land of Sunrise an' Sunset."

chapter twentysix of Sky Island, by L. Frank Baum...previous/next

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