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7. The Journey to the Great Oz (continued)
This was to be an eventful day for the travelers. They had hardly been walking an hour when they saw before them a great ditch that crossed the road and divided the forest as far as they could see on either side. It was a very wide ditch, and when they crept up to the edge and looked into it they could see it was also very deep, and there were many big, jagged rocks at the bottom. The sides were so steep that none of them could climb down, and for a moment it seemed that their journey must end.
"What shall we do?" asked Dorothy despairingly.
"I haven't the faintest idea," said the Tin Woodman, and the Lion shook his shaggy mane and looked thoughtful.
But the Scarecrow said, "We cannot fly, that is certain. Neither can we climb down into this great ditch. Therefore, if we cannot jump over it, we must stop where we are."
"I think I could jump over it," said the Cowardly Lion, after measuring the distance carefully in his mind.
"Then we are all right," answered the Scarecrow, "for you can carry us all over on your back, one at a time."
"Well, I'll try it," said the Lion. "Who will go first?"
"I will," declared the Scarecrow, "for, if you found that you could not jump over the gulf, Dorothy would be killed, or the Tin Woodman badly dented on the rocks below. But if I am on your back it will not matter so much, for the fall would not hurt me at all."
"I am terribly afraid of falling, myself," said the Cowardly Lion, "but I suppose there is nothing to do but try it. So get on my back and we will make the attempt."
The Scarecrow sat upon the Lion's back, and the big beast walked to the edge of the gulf and crouched down.
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