From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
Well, this is a rather fitting chapter title for a Witch's origin story.
Meet the parents of the Wicked Witch of the West: Frexspar (a.k.a. Frex) and Melena, who live in Rush Margins, Munchkinland. (Frex and Melena aren't short Munchkinlanders, by the way.)
Melena is pregnant and complaining about how huge she is.
Her husband is less than interested in the imminent birth of his first child. He is a minister (yes, the Witch's father is a religious leader) and he has a big sermon to give today.
Melena goes outside to do some chores and sings to herself, thinking about her baby boy.
Frex dresses up in black and practices his sermon.
The two get into a small spat over breakfast. Melena is mad that Frex plans to leave her today when she is expecting to go into labor.
Frex thinks going out to scold people for immoral behavior is more fun and less messy.
Frex even thinks that a potential failed sermon is better than childbirth: "to fail in the cause of a high moral concern was satisfying to him. How could it compare with the flesh, blood, mess, and noise of having a baby?" (1.1.44)
Frex leaves, and Melena is resigned to being alone for the day.
Fun fact: We learn about religion in Oz here. Frex is a "Unionist" minister who believes in the "Unnamed God." Unionism sounds like a rough equivalent to Protestantism.