She chases tornadoes, her black hair tossing behind as she rides on after them, her blue dress caught in the wind of the cyclone. She’s been doing this for years now, ever since she dropped out of college. She’d had a whole bunch of nightmares then, powerful frightening stuff, about the nights auntie em died and she had those crazy dreams.
But the dreams, they’d felt real. And the nightmares even more so. Since then she’s been getting letters in the mail. Addressed to her. No words on them, but they smell like winter and remind her of the witches chasing through the maze. And the horrors of them melting, melting at the slightest contact with water. And now she had no idea anymore as to what was dream and what was reality.
Her childhood memories became a blur of fantastical landscapes she could’ve swore were fake, and long hours on a farm in Kansas she wished weren’t real at all. And coming back home, riding back down on the hot air balloon, seeing the devastation of the farm, all those dead bodies. Even the cattle were corpses. No wonder she’d forced these memories gone, long gone, long away.
Now, now, she’s trying to go back and heal. So she chases tornadoes, hoping for the one that takes her back home. Her husband’s patient with her, goes along with it, smiling, waiting. He knows that the world of Oz exists, and is real for her as it is real for him. He just can’t tell her. Not yet. Not about his own journeys there. But some day, some day, he’ll let all of his straw out and become the hollow man again, the brainless one again, king scarecrow. They will give him a 21 gun salute, and the emerald city will shine like green stars.
Maybe this one, here. Maybe this will be the one.