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12. The Search for the Wicked Witch (continued)
Now the Wicked Witch of the West had but one eye, yet that was as powerful as a telescope, and could see everywhere. So, as she sat in the door of her castle, she happened to look around and saw Dorothy lying asleep, with her friends all about her. They were a long distance off, but the Wicked Witch was angry to find them in her country; so she blew upon a silver whistle that hung around her neck.
At once there came running to her from all directions a pack of great wolves. They had long legs and fierce eyes and sharp teeth.
"Go to those people," said the Witch, "and tear them to pieces."
"Are you not going to make them your slaves?" asked the leader of the wolves.
"No," she answered, "one is of tin, and one of straw; one is a girl and another a Lion. None of them is fit to work, so you may tear them into small pieces."
"Very well," said the wolf, and he dashed away at full speed, followed by the others.
It was lucky the Scarecrow and the Woodman were wide awake and heard the wolves coming.
"This is my fight," said the Woodman, "so get behind me and I will meet them as they come."
He seized his axe, which he had made very sharp, and as the leader of the wolves came on the Tin Woodman swung his arm and chopped the wolf's head from its body, so that it immediately died. As soon as he could raise his axe another wolf came up, and he also fell under the sharp edge of the Tin Woodman's weapon. There were forty wolves, and forty times a wolf was killed, so that at last they all lay dead in a heap before the Woodman.
Then he put down his axe and sat beside the Scarecrow, who said, "It was a good fight, friend."
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