Leo’s Introspection (Fanfiction of ‘The Wonderful Wizard of Oz’)

“Yaaah!” the terrified Winkie guard backed away from the prisoner behind the iron bars as soon as he got near, nervously clutching the glass of milk, now shaking in his hands. His screams were due to the Animal prisoner, a Lion called Leo who eyed him and snarled. “Where is Dorothy?!” thundered the Lion. “Sh-e is the Witch’s slave” stuttered the guard who was just able to snap his fingers and the presence of other guards of his kind were enough to take away his fear. The Lion chuckled and said “You seem to forget that I am more scared of you than you of me. It is amusing that the presence of your accomplices makes you braver”. The Winkie guard cut him short “I do not need to heed your words Lion. This place is where we do the talking, you listen”. “I refuse to listen” responded Leo. As he began to pace back and forth like any caged Animal would “I know that you want me to do something for you in order to earn that milk you have with you”. “Our mistress will hear of this!” yelled one of the Guards. “I truly hope so” said Leo “For I would rather starve than rot behind bars”. “I suggest we leave him” said one of the guards “let our mistress deal with him”. The others nodded and they left the pacing Lion                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

Leo was a coward from the start, nervous of nearly everyone or everything. Every capable Lion is supposed to be King of the Beasts, but not in his case. His obstacle cost the respect that other Animals would have given him had he not been so ungainly in attempting to revive his obstacle of fear.  The more he tried being brave, the more he failed. His determination in this became promising upon accidently attacking a girl called Dorothy, her Dog Toto and their friends, a Tin Woodsman called Nick and a Scarecrow. Upon being chastised by Dorothy, Leo declared he was a coward even though none of them could believe that. Dorothy was not from this land, she was from an unknown country known as Kansas and wished to return there with Toto. The Scarecrow wanted a Brain and the Tinman desired a Heart, all these wishes of theirs which were being taken to be fulfilled by the most powerful of all Wizards, the Wizard of the Emerald City of Oz. Leo agreed to go with them to get courage. They had a perilous journey through a deadly Poppy Field which made its passers sleepy and narrowly escaped an attack from two Kalidahs, Half-Bear, Half-Tiger Beasts who were the result of infrequent rape of bears by Tigers.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            


When the party reached the Emerald City where Oz resided, they went separately to meet him. Dorothy described him as a giant head seated on an enormous Chair but he told her that in order for him to grant her wish, she needed to kill the Wicked Witch of the West. The Scarecrow described Oz as a beautiful woman who told him the same thing as he did Dorothy, put an end to the Western Wicked Witch for his wish, the same went for the Tinman who described Oz as an awful Beast and the Lion who saw Oz as a glowing ball of fire. With no other way, the party left to find the Witch. She would have probably seen them coming, for a vicious pack of wolves, a flock of crows and a swarm of bees, probably sent by her, emerged and attacked. The Tinman killed some wolves with his Axe giving the others a message to leave. The Scarecrow stood between his friends and the crows whom he caught and stopped allowing some to escape. Most of the bees broke their stingers on the Tinman’s body. The Witch, her animal minions having failed, turned to her guards, members of the Winkie Tribe who were renowned for their fear, yet they still obeyed the Witch. But they were clawed and beaten by Leo, retreating when he roared at them. The Witch succeeded when she sent out more animal minions, flying monkeys who ripped the Scarecrow of his straw, dashed the Tinman to the ground and tied up the Lion before throwing him in his prison. They refused to harm Dorothy or even Toto due to a kiss mark on Dorothy which was made by the Northern Good Witch, ruler of the Munchkins. Instead they took her to the Western Wicked Witch who simply made Dorothy her slave.


Just then, out of the corner of his eye, Leo saw the Western Wicked Witch approaching, with a cart. She put it in a corner and walked up to see the Lion, sneering “I am here to ask something of you”. Leo asked “Has it to do with that?” and he pointed at the cart. “Exactly I want you to pull the cart and take me where I please”. The Lion scowled “I cannot”. “You have no choice! Now are you ready to be harnessed like a Horse?” the Witch evilly asked as she unlocked the door of the cage but on doing so, Leo leapt forward, at the Witch, roaring. The terrified Witch closed the door and stood back “If you even come in this yard or open the bars of this prison I will bite you!” thundered Leo. “Then you have nothing to eat until you do as I please!” replied the Witch. “As you wish!” the Lion growled and the Witch left furiously. At night Dorothy who also had access to the Lion’s prison came in with Toto and gave him food, a chicken leg and some milk. The two talked of how impossible it was to gain their wishes now that they were in this incarceration which was guarded fiercely. Many days went on like this. Leo knew that he had to find a way out of this place but in the right way.


The Lion threw himself emotionally and intellectually into the Spirit World where he could seek the advice of those before him. Two of them appeared before him; the first one said “Trapped you may be but we have never vengefully given in to any circumstances like these Leo. If not that Witch at least forgive her Minions for having done what they did to you and your new friends”. The other one however was much more negative as he said “Think! Leo think! Never let an event like this drain your hopes. Kill anyone who unlocks that door, including that Witch so you can get out!”. Both these sets of words appeared to conflict with one another so much that even Leo began to get nervous and say “I can’t do it, I can’t be brave, especially while trapped in here. Please no!”. Still both sides began to continue their conflicting beliefs. “Silence!” roared Leo when it got too much and this marked his exit from the Spirit World. Relying on what the first of them said, Leo began to search for all old material related to hope and forgiveness which were dumped in the yard where he was. He found a book about Forgiveness which seemed old and dusty. “The Witch does not seem to treasure what is right” thought Leo. He was neither short nor long sighted but a bit of both and thus he needed glasses. Luckily some were found in the book, probably it formerly belonging to the Witch. Leo started to read one chapter of it everyday, not deterred by those who laughed at him for it. After completing a chapter, he put its messages into action, beginning with polite declination to work for anyone and his attempts to interact with sympathetic guards who brought him food. Through this, he realized that they were pressured to work for the Witch. One day while Leo was drawing, he heard a scream which shook the castle. “What goes on? I hope Dorothy is safe” he thought. He was surprised to see Dorothy running towards him after that. “Dorothy what was that all about?” he asked. “The Witch was vulnerable to water. I threw some on her and she has gone forever! We are free!” Dorothy excitedly said and unlocked the Lion’s prison whose bars kept him captive for 25 days. They found the Scarecrow and Tinman whose remains were kept by the Witch during their imprisonment. But the Winkies were only too glad to restore them, putting the Tinman’s body parts accurately and refurbishing his Axe. After they stitched up the Scarecrow, they even smartened up his hat and gave him a cane to hold for style. The Winkies were finally free from enslavement by the Witch and now they could live normal lives. Meanwhile, Dorothy retrieved a magic cap, one which the Witch used to summon the flying monkeys. The monkeys were summoned by their new mistress and were asked to carry everyone towards the Emerald City which the monkeys happily did. Along the way, Leo thought “I probably would never have gotten out of there without the use of my gentleness but I now wonder, is the Wizard ready to present us with his gifts?”                                                                                            

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