Disclaimer: I don't own Wicked or The Wizard of Oz. I wish I did, but I don't and I'm not making any money off this story!
Warning: OOCness (mainly for Dorothy).
No one mourns the wicked. It was a simple and universally accepted truth, especially in Oz. Everyone was overjoyed to hear that the Wicked Witch of the West was dead, and they praised Dorothy and her friends for saving them from her evil grasp. The Munchkinlanders joined with the remaining tribes of the Quadlands to celebrate her passing with gleeful songs and dancing. It was a time of peace and prosperity, of happiness and joy, of freedom from oppression to all. Well, to all but one.
"All you must do is tap your heels together three times and say 'there's no place like home,'" Glinda the Good Witch said to young Dorothy. She smiled at the sight of the beautiful ruby-red slippers on the child's feet. Nessarose always did have great taste in shoes.
"That's all?" Dorothy asked. "You mean I didn't have to come all the way to the Emerald City, I could have done that from the beginning? Why didn't you tell me?"
"Do you regret your journey?" Glinda replied with her ever-present smile. It was expected of her, because she was a good witch.
Dorothy shook her head fervently, "Oh, no! I've made some wonderful friends here, friends I will miss very much when I go home. I wouldn't trade them for the world!" Her friends all returned the kind remarks with their own declarations of friendship.
"And what of Elph…" she trailed off uncertainly when she laid eyes on the tin man. "The Witch of the West?"
Dorothy and her three friends sobered, the glee draining from their faces along with the rosy color of Dorothy's cheeks. "The Wicked Witch of the West? She's dead. Everyone is celebrating it, and I understand why. She treated them horribly and was so cruel and wicked, just like her name. I didn't hate her though, I didn't even know her."
"I see," Glinda murmured. "And what of the rest of you? Was she really born evil, or did others force her wickedness upon her? What do you think of her death?"
"I say good riddance!" the Tin-man exclaimed with great passion.
"She got what she deserves!" snarled the Lion, who was putting on fierce airs for the awed Munchkinlanders.
"She chose to do bad, and one only reaps what they sew," agreed the Scarecrow with a clever expression on his face. He didn't look her in the eye.
"Well, then why have the celebrations come to a halt? The good news must be fully appreciated." With that, Glinda waved her wand and disappeared once the attention was no longer on her. At one time, she would have loved the praise and reverence people showered on her, but now, after all that's transpired, it seemed selfish and wrong to bask in glory while Elphaba was fresh in her grave.
No, she told herself firmly, no one mourns the loss of wickedness in their life. No one! Especially not one who is esteemed good. How she despised that word. Good. It was her title, what she was known for throughout the Land of Oz and beyond, yet she hated it with a passion. She loathed it as much as she loathed her own weakness.
"I cannot even defend my dearest friend from them. I would as soon disown her as protect her. Perhaps that is the reason for her untimely death," Glinda said softly to herself, running her palm over the tall blades of grass that were as green as the late witch herself. "Oh, who are you fooling, Galinda! You miss her deeply! She changed you and set you straight!"
Soft pattering of footsteps approached. Glinda immediately rose to her feet. It was not proper for a Good Witch to sit curled up in the grass on the verge of tears. Good Witches were always supposed to be happy and smiling. It was an unspoken requirement she always struggled to meet.
"Miss Glinda? The Munchinlanders wanted me to fetch you for a venerating ceremony for the heroes of Oz," Dorothy said, blushing faintly. "Being called a heroine is so strange. Oh, but you must be used to it because you're so Good." For an instance, Glinda forgot herself and scoffed at the girl's statement. Dorothy was taken aback, and it was clearly written on her face.
Glinda couldn't force herself to smile anymore. The pain was too great. That last statement was what she wanted people to say about her and Elphaba both. "Non of that matters anymore, Dorothy."
"You look…unusually cynical," Dorothy observed. Glinda corrected her posture and smiled as brightly as she could manage.
"Whatever do you mean? I am overjoyed that the Witches are no longer tormenting my fellow citizens of Oz. You should be as well."
"I am indeed!" Dorothy assured her hastily, seeking to gratify her. She could tell she was unsuccessful by the tears that welled up in Glinda the Good Witch's eyes. "I'm sorry, please don't be upset! I was just agreeing with you. I meant no offense, Miss Galinda!"
"No one mourns the Wicked…" she mumbled to herself, and then she turned to Dorothy. "You must not spend your life trying to please everyone. It is impossible and unfulfilling, Dorothy. I know that very well. Be yourself and you will be much happier."
"I am happy. I don't live to please others," the twelve year-old replied with certainty.
"Have the events here changed you?" Glinda inquired, having gained a tighter reign on her raging emotions. Dorothy smiled in relief when she saw the smile reappear on the Good Witch's gorgeous face. She considered the question and, her smile brightening, she nodded.
"Yes. I've changed. For the better." She paused and took in the woman's appearance. "And you, Miss Glinda?"
Glinda laughed and a look of nostalgia graced her features. "Of course. Who can say if it is for the better, though? Certainly not I. Elphaba, perhaps, but not I. I know that I will never be the same as I was before I knew her. Because I knew her so well, I have been changed completely, changed undeniably and irreversibly, forever and ever." The floodgates were open and Glinda felt her face grow damp with the tears she had been forbidden to shed since she became Glinda the Good Witch.
"You knew her?" Dorothy asked, although she was not surprised. She seemed to know the answer already.
"I-I…" Glinda trailed off. She was hesitant, but she was still afraid to connect herself with someone others despised so strongly. She should never have tried to disown her friend in the first place. With a sigh, she said, "Yes, I knew her…but I knew her as Elphaba. To me, she always has been and always will be Elphaba."
"One of the Munchkinlanders said you and she were acquainted," Dorothy added. "And when she captured me and took me to her fortress, she unintentionally hinted at it as well. She called you Galinda, with a 'Ga' as if it were some sort of joke. At first, I thought she didn't know your name or was mocking it, but I asked around and found out that it was your given name."
"Galinda." She laughed. "Yes, it used to be my name. Elphaba was probably one of the few people to see me as Galinda. She saw me for who I really was and accept me in spite of it." She glanced hesitantly at Dorothy. "What did she say to you in the tower?" Before I arrived, she added silently.
Dorothy shrugged. "She told me I would die when the hourglass ran out. She said no one could rescue me, not even 'the good little sweetheart Galinda'. She said I was 'sickeningly sweet', she said I was too much like you. She sounded very bitter and hurt. I felt sorry for her. Oh, and she also said, 'Nessa would have wanted me to have them. She told me so.' I don't know what that meant, but it was said with such sadness and longing."
Glinda bit her lip. "Nessarose, her younger sister, a dear girl, although she was a little too religious for her own good. Elphaba was completely devoted to her, and Nessarose depended on her older sister," she said in a gossiping tone of voice. "Nessa was strangely handicapped, but she had the best tastes, especially in shoes. Those ruby slippers are a perfect example. She promised to give them to Elphaba some day, although Elphaba wasn't there when she said so. It was just she, Boq, and myself."
"Oh, so I should have given her the shoes after all," Dorothy mumbled.
"If you did that, you wouldn't be able to go home," Glinda reminded her.
Dorothy smiled. "Yes, but this is home just as much as the farm."
Glinda mirrored the girl's smile and held out her hand. "I believe we have a ceremony to attend. You defied gravity itself to save these people from oppression, and you deserve this honor." Glinda's eyes twinkled mysteriously as Dorothy accepted her offered hand. "Elphaba would have been envious, you know. She always talked about defying gravity. I told her she was crazy. I thought it was impossible. Of course, the moment the words left my mouth she found a way to do it. Always doing the impossible, Elphaba was."
Dorothy stopped where she was, ending Glinda's short speech, and hugged the Good Witch warmly. "I will mourn her," the girl whispered into her ear, "I will miss her." Glinda wrapped her arms around the child and wept.
So will I.
But she couldn't say it.