When the Soldier had departed the Scarecrow said:
"Won't you take a chair while we are waiting?"
"Your Majesty forgets that I cannot understand you," replied the Pumpkinhead. "If you wish me to sit down you must make a sign for me to do so." The Scarecrow came down from his throne and rolled an armchair to a position behind the Pumpkinhead. Then he gave Jack a sudden push that sent him sprawling upon the cushions in so awkward a fashion that he doubled up like a jackknife, and had hard work to untangle himself.
"Did you understand that sign?" asked His Majesty, politely.
"Perfectly," declared Jack, reaching up his arms to turn his head to the front, the pumpkin having twisted around upon the stick that supported it.
"You seem hastily made," remarked the Scarecrow, watching Jack's efforts to straighten himself.
"Not more so than your Majesty," was the frank reply.
"There is this difference between us," said the Scarecrow, "that whereas I will bend, but not break, you will break, but not bend."
76 Full page line-art drawing.
"HE GAVE JACK A SUDDEN PUSH"
At this moment the soldier returned leading a young girl by the hand. She seemed very sweet and modest, having a pretty face and beautiful green eyes and hair. A dainty green silk skirt reached to her knees, showing silk stockings embroidered with pea-pods, and green satin slippers with bunches of lettuce for decorations instead of bows or buckles. Upon her silken waist clover leaves were embroidered, and she wore a jaunty little jacket trimmed with sparkling emeralds of a uniform size.
"Why, it's little Jellia Jamb!" exclaimed the Scarecrow, as the green maiden bowed her pretty head before him. "Do you understand the language of the Gillikins, my dear?"
"Yes, your Majesty, she answered, "for I was born in the North Country."
"Then you shall be our interpreter," said the Scarecrow, "and explain to this Pumpkinhead all that I say, and also explain to me all that he says. Is this arrangement satisfactory?" he asked, turning toward his guest.
"Very satisfactory indeed," was the reply.
"Then ask him, to begin with," resumed the Scarecrow, turning to Jellia, "what brought him to the Emerald City"
But instead of this the girl, who had been staring at Jack, said to him:
"You are certainly a wonderful creature. Who made you?"
"A boy named Tip," answered Jack.
"What does he say?" inquired the Scarecrow. "My ears must have deceived me. What did he say?"
"He says that your Majesty's brains seem to have come loose," replied the girl, demurely.
The Scarecrow moved uneasily upon his throne, and felt of his head with his left hand.
"What a fine thing it is to understand two different languages," he said, with a perplexed sigh. "Ask him, my dear, if he has any objection to being put in jail for insulting the ruler of the Emerald City."
"I didn't insult you!" protested Jack, indignantly.
"Tut -- tut!" cautioned the Scarecrow "wait, until Jellia translates my speech. What have we got an interpreter for, if you break out in this rash way?"
"All right, I'll wait," replied the Pumpkinhead, in a surly tone -- although his face smiled as genially as ever. "Translate the speech, young woman."
"His Majesty inquires if you are hungry, said Jellia.
"Oh, not at all!" answered Jack, more pleasantly, "for it is impossible for me to eat."
"It's the same way with me," remarked the Scarecrow. "What did he say, Jellia, my dear?"
"He asked if you were aware that one of your eyes is painted larger than the other," said the girl, mischievously.
"Don't you believe her, your Majesty, cried Jack.
"Oh, I don't," answered the Scarecrow, calmly. Then, casting a sharp look at the girl, he asked:
"Are you quite certain you understand the languages of both the Gillikins and the Munchkins?"
"Quite certain, your Majesty," said Jellia Jamb, trying hard not to laugh in the face of royalty.
"Then how is it that I seem to understand them myself?" inquired the Scarecrow.