Dorothy and her friends arrived at the Royal Palace at an opportune time, fo_zma was holding high court in her Throne Room, where Professor H. M.
Wogglebug, T.E., was appealing to her to punish some of the students of th_oyal Athletic College, of which he was the Principal.
This College is located in the Munchkin Country, but not far from the Emeral_ity. To enable the students to devote their entire time to athleti_xercises, such as boating, foot-ball, and the like, Professor Wogglebug ha_nvented an assortment of Tablets of Learning. One of these tablets, eaten b_ scholar after breakfast, would instantly enable him to understand arithmeti_r algebra or any other branch of mathematics. Another tablet eaten afte_unch gave a student a complete knowledge of geography. Another tablet made i_ossible for the eater to spell the most difficult words, and still anothe_nabled him to write a beautiful hand. There were tablets for history,
mechanics, home cooking and agriculture, and it mattered not whether a boy o_ girl was stupid or bright, for the tablets taught them everything in th_winkling of an eye.
This method, which is patented in the Land of Oz by Professor Wogglebug, save_aper and books, as well as the tedious hours devoted to study in some of ou_ess favored schools, and it also allows the students to devote all their tim_o racing, base-ball, tennis and other manly and womanly sports, which ar_reatly interfered with by study in those Temples of Learning where Tablets o_earning are unknown.
But it so happened that Professor Wogglebug (who had invented so much that h_ad acquired the habit) carelessly invented a Square-Meal Tablet, which was n_igger than your little finger-nail but contained, in condensed form, th_qual of a bowl of soup, a portion of fried fish, a roast, a salad and _essert, all of which gave the same nourishment as a square meal.
The Professor was so proud of these Square-Meal Tablets that he began to fee_hem to the students at his college, instead of other food, but the boys an_irls objected because they wanted food that they could enjoy the taste of. I_as no fun at all to swallow a tablet, with a glass of water, and call it _inner; so they refused to eat the Square-Meal Tablets. Professor Wogglebu_nsisted, and the result was that the Senior Class seized the learne_rofessor one day and threw him into the river—clothes and all. Everyone know_hat a wogglebug cannot swim, and so the inventor of the wonderful Square-Mea_ablets lay helpless on the bottom of the river for three days before _isherman caught one of his legs on a fishhook and dragged him out upon th_ank.
The learned Professor was naturally indignant at such treatment, and so h_rought the entire Senior Class to the Emerald City and appealed to Ozma of O_o punish them for their rebellion.
I do not suppose the girl Ruler was very severe with the rebellious boys an_irls, because she had herself refused to eat the Square-Meal Tablets in plac_f food, but while she was listening to the interesting case in her Thron_oom, Cap'n Bill managed to carry the golden flower-pot containing the Magi_lower up to Trot's room without it being seen by anyone except Jellia Jamb,
Ozma's chief Maid of Honor, and Jellia promised not to tell.
Also the Wizard was able to carry the cage of monkeys up to one of the to_owers of the palace, where he had a room of his own, to which no one cam_nless invited. So Trot and Dorothy and Cap'n Bill and the Wizard were al_elighted at the successful end of their adventure. The Cowardly Lion and th_ungry Tiger went to the marble stables behind the Royal Palace, where the_ived while at home, and they too kept the secret, even refusing to tell th_ooden Sawhorse, and Hank the Mule, and the Yellow Hen, and the Pink Kitte_here they had been.
Trot watered the Magic Flower every day and allowed no one in her room to se_he beautiful blossoms except her friends, Betsy Bobbin and Dorothy. Th_onderful plant did not seem to lose any of its magic by being removed fro_ts island, and Trot was sure that Ozma would prize it as one of her mos_elightful treasures.
Up in his tower the little Wizard of Oz began training his twelve tin_onkeys, and the little creatures were so intelligent that they learned ever_rick the Wizard tried to teach them. The Wizard treated them with grea_indness and gentleness and gave them the food that monkeys love best, so the_romised to do their best on the great occasion of Ozma's birthday.