Author: Kat Lee
Dedicated To: A trick or treat treat for erinm_4600. (You can request your own treat, or trick, here!)
Fandom: Wizard of Oz
Character/Pairing: Dorothy, Trio
Word Count: 736
Date Written: 3 October 2018
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to Baum, not the author, and are used without permission.
She looked up as she heard the familiar knock. The night was getting old, and her body was already there. She was riddled with aches and pains that made her moan aloud as she rose to answer the door yet again. She should blow out the candle in her window, she thought, and go to bed. There were still other houses where the children could receive their treats, and besides, why did she want to hand out treats any way? It wasn’t as though this world had ever done anything to help her, only to harm her.
She never should have come back, Dorothy thought. She had missed her uncle and especially her aunt so much that the thought of not returning home had been unbearable, but now that she had buried them, and Toto’s last descendent too, long ago, she had nothing left in this world. She had no reason left to be here, but she had been unable to find her way back to Oz.
Oh, she had tried! How she had tried! She had purposefully gotten lost in so many air balloons over the years, but none of them had landed anywhere other than in this meager world. She wanted to go home, and this world was no longer it. There was no longer anything to hold her here, but she couldn’t get back.
She sighed as she picked up her basket of cookies and opened the door. Then she froze. Her eyes widened slowly as she looked at one costumed person to the next. These people were far too tall to be kids, and the costumes they wore -- They were so much like her friends back in Oz! Dorothy stood stock still, the basket slipping from her fingers, as she stared at the three men on her porch. This couldn’t be happening! It couldn’t be real! She trembled.
The Lion wrung the end of his furry tail in his shaking paws. “N-Now l-look who l-looks l-like sh-she’s seen a gh-ghost!” He moved swiftly as Dorothy dropped her basket, catching it before the wicker basket, or its delicious contents, could hit the dusty floor.
“Dorothy?” the Tin Man asked uncertainly. His heart was beating hard, but he still couldn’t be certain it was her. They’d come so far! Was this truly the end?
It was the Scarecrow who spoke decisively, “Yes, it’s her! Of course it’s her!” He reached her, clasping Dorothy’s hands in his own hands made from old gloves stuffed with straw.
She turned her hands up and squeezed his, searching for any sign of real flesh or bone, but all she could feel was straw. “S-Scarecrow?” she whispered doubtfully. Her gaze then moved from him to the other two. “Tin Man?” she asked. “Lion?” Tears spilled down her cheeks; for once, she didn’t move to stop them.
The Scarecrow embraced her with arms made of straw. They felt no more solid than they were, but they felt exactly like they had every time they’d touched in Oz. “Yes, Dorothy,” he answered, kissing the top of her greyed head. “It’s us.”
“We -- We couldn’t find you. You -- You didn’t seem to be coming back, s-so we came after you.” The Lion released his tail, tears dripping down his own face, to embrace her from the other side.
“We missed you, Dorothy,” the Tin Man spoke, stepping up last to add his metal arms around her small frame too. “We all missed you so much!”
“Don’t cry,” she said, taking out a handkerchief and dabbing at his eyes. “You’ll rust.”
“Oh, he’s rusted plenty of times over the years we’ve been apart!” the Scarecrow told her.
“Yeah,” the Lion agreed, his tail whisking. “We know how to deal with it now!”
“Still, I’d rather he didn’t rust.” Still dabbing at the Tin Man’s tears, she looked at the other two and shook her head in wonder. “You found me! You really found me!” She had not been able to find them, but they had come after her. She was home again at last, right here on this piece of land where she’d thought she’d die, with the three dearest people left to her in all the worlds. It truly was a magical night, she thought as her three best friends wrapped their arms around her and hugged her tightly, and this time, she was never going to let go of the magic.