The Grove

The Grove

By Gabriella Stein

Maribeth ran across the grassy plane until she stumbled upon what she was looking for. As she approached the first tree, she reached her hand out. She pressed her hand up against it as if testing its sturdiness. Then placed her other hand next to the first and pushed into the tree with all her strength. Nothing happened at first. So she stood there for a minute. She sighed.

They made it seem much more interesting—

The tree fell back in the opposite direction of her.

But it didn’t crash like a normal tree would. No, this one went through the ground as if it was made out of ghostly material.

A smile slowly formed on Maribeth’s face.

Mama always said: patience.

She stepped forward and looked down. Where the tree used to be standing there was not a trace of what once stood there.

One last time, she looked around at her surroundings, the peculiar trees that stood in front of her, the vast field of grass behind her that now seemed to have no end, and back down at what was in front of her.

She took a blissful, deep breath, repositioned herself into a diving position, and took a dive right into where the tree fell through before.

The ground didn’t feel like she expected.

She expected it to feel liquidy, almost like water.

But that’s not what it was at all.


Maribeth thought it felt more like putty than a liquid. Swimming through it took more effort than if the consistency was similar to water. It felt almost as if she had to peel away the layers of the earth one by one to make room for herself.

And there the tree was at the bottom of the grove.

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