It was a particularly sunny day in the Emerald City. Lion was out fishing, the Tin Man was working in his garden, but Scarecrow was nowhere to be seen.
He was sitting in the Wizard's old room, reminiscing. It had been months since Dorothy had left. Their lives had been the same thing day after day until that girl arrived. Why, he had been sitting on that post for ages thinking that he was an idiot until Dorothy set him free. And the Tin Man had been rusted into place for a very long time. To think Tin Man wanted a heart! There wasn't a man (flesh or tin) anywhere in the land of Oz that was kinder, or more romantic, than TiM (Scarecrow had decided, with his new brain, that TiM would be a very fitting nickname for the Tin Man). Then there was Lion who was scared of everything from The Witch to sheep to his own shadow. Scarecrow smiled as he remembered how bravely Lion had faced the witch when he needed to help save Dorothy.
It was clearly noticeable that all three of them had changed. No, not changed, Scarecrow thought, they had simply embraced their biggest gifts that they had thought to be missing all these years. All the same, Scarecrow figured he would rather have Dorothy back than have all the brains in the Land of Oz.
The past few months had been nice, but dull. Tin Man had put himself to work making sure the people of the Emerald City were well taken care of and Lion had set out to prowl the grounds whenever he thought they needed a "Witch Check". Scarecrow had taken care of the more intellectual matters, of course, and had mainly stayed in his office doing intellectual things. Their lives were easy, they always had food in their bellies, and had plenty of time to do the things they desired, but none of them had been happy. All this time Dorothy had stayed in the backs of their minds, and they could never really forget her.
Oh, how scarecrow wished to have another adventure. He wished to see Dorothy again, and he wished that life could be just a little bit more interesting.
Scarecrow scratched his straw-filled head. He had never felt so alive as when they were on their journey, he thought, and though they were in mortal peril through much of it, he wouldn't have traded it for the world. Who knew that a yellow-brick road could lead to such an adventure?
That was it! The solution seemed so obvious! Why hadn't he thought about it before?
He had to tell Lion and TiM!
He ran out of the large and empty room.
Lion waited tensely, poised and cautious. He watched the fish in front of him dart back and forth, taunting him. He leaned forward slowly and… snatch! He caught the fish with one swipe of his paw. Grinning with his victory, he tossed the fish into the pail he had brought along and waited for another.
His ear twitched as he heard a noise behind him. Crouching to the ground, he slowly turned. The long green grass behind him was shifting as someone- or something- made their way towards him. Panic started to rise within him, but he reminded himself of the medal he always wore on his mane and remembered his courage. He watched warily until the head of Scarecrow appeared.
Releasing his bated breath, Lion straightened himself.
"You could give someone a heart attack, sneaking up on them like that!" Lion said, doing his best to breathe normal again.
"Sorry," Scarecrow said, wobbling a little bit, "I just came from the Emerald City to see you because I have the most wonderful idea! But we must go find TiM before I can tell you anything. Come with me!"
The Tin Man pulled the last gnarly weed from his well-kept garden and smiled a tinny smile to himself. Standing up with a squeak, he threw the weed into a nearby garbage bin. Almost immediately the garbage carriage came by and emptied the can's contents. Tin Man waved at the driver and turned back to his house.
It was a rather nice house, he thought, with a tin roof and green walls. His garden had many beautiful flowers, including butter-nose tulips and some non-sleepy poppies. He wished to share the beauty of his flowers with someone. He looked around, but the nearest person was the garbage man. And he had already seen Tin Man's garden. The neighbors were all busy with their own families and their gardens looked nice as well. Surely another garden would not mean much to them.
Tin Man, or TiM as his friends called him, sadly watched the family next door. A father with slick black hair and a mustache picked up his little girl. They were laughing and the father was tickling the little girl's feet. The mother peeked her head out of their lime green door and called them in for dinner. TiM watched them walk inside and a pang of sadness reached his… well it wasn't really a heart, he thought, but something was feeling sad.
Being made of tin can kind of mess up one's ideals for a future family. Sometimes, just sometimes, the Tin Man wished he were human.
"TiM!" A voice behind him made him jump, and he saw Scarecrow and Lion running up to meet him.
Lion spoke first, "Scarecrow has an idea he needs to share with us!"
"And I think you'll like it." Scarecrow added. "Let's go inside, if that's ok".
Once inside the house, TiM offered them some drinks, but, the drinks being mostly oil, both declined politely.
TiM sat the tray of drinks aside and asked, "What is your idea?"
Scarecrow, a small smile appearing on his face, leaned forward. Lion and TiM leaned in as well.
Scarecrow paused and looked at both of his friends, mostly to add suspense. Then he began.
"Do you remember a few months ago, when we first met?"
Lion nodded eagerly and Tin Man looked almost sad and nodded as well.
"Well the whole time, we were following a yellow brick road, with a girl we just met, just to go see a wizard who wasn't actually a wizard, correct? Well I have the grandest idea. We all miss Dorothy, yes?"
Both of the others nodded again.
"Well my deductive reasoning tells me this; if we follow the yellow brick road back the way we came, what if we find Dorothy again?"
"You mean, do the journey in reverse?" Lion said, a sliver of fear coming through his voice, "but won't we have to face the same things we did before?"
"But the witch is dead!" Scarecrow said, almost too excitedly. "Her part of the story won't even be there anymore! Once we've traveled back down the yellow brick road, we'll be able to find out where Dorothy started her journey, and maybe we'll be able to find Dorothy!" Lion and TiM smiled at each other.
"Do you think Dorothy will be at the beginning of the Yellow Brick road?" Lion asked.
"Well wouldn't it be worth the try?" Scarecrow replied.
"Let's try it!" TiM added.
"What are we waiting for?" Lion jumped down from his chair and started heading out the door.
"Before we leave this time," TiM stopped Lion at the door, "can we bring some supplies? I'd hate to leave without my oil can."
"I'll go grab my fish!" Lion said hastily as TiM rummaged through his cabinets for oil cans.
Scarecrow smiled and looked out the window at the setting sun. "I'll call our secondary's to take over for a while. However, I would like to start our journey in daylight. I'll go get my straw fluffed and we can be off by tomorrow morning."