Rose stretched and yawned and tumbled out of her bed onto the ground. Her twin brother, Zach, still slept soundly on the other side of the extremely large bush that they called their home. She could smell wood burning from a long distance and wondered who would be burning wood in the hollow. Rose could smell from long distances what no one else in the hollow could.
After her breakfast, her brother was still asleep so she decided that she was old enough now to go out on her own. She checked the pink bow in her hair one last time. “Pink looks so good with my black and white fur,” she thought and off she went.
She sniffed high and low. Around the large rocks to the north of her home, she sniffed and into the thick trees by the creek. Her nose took her further and further until she reached a small clearing surrounded by trees. Rose pulled the leaves out of her face and looked around the clearing and there stood almost as tall as the trees a large brown furry monster. Rose turned to run and got tangled up in some vines. A large hand grabbed her up, up, up into the air.
“Hello, friend,” a kind voice said.
Rose was so startled she forgot that she could spray to get away.
“Don’t be afraid,” said the monster.
Rose began to cry. She was so afraid, that was all she could do.
The big brown furry monster sat her on a chair made of a tree trunk and looked at her.
“I am glad to have a friend but I wish you would not cry.”
Rose looked up and realized his face was kind. “Who are you? What are you?”
“Oh, I am a bear. Have you never seen a bear before? My name is Alfred. Would you like a bowl of my vegetable stew?”
No, indeed, she had never seen a bear. He was covered in brown fur and had black eyes and black lips. His claws were as long as her legs. He was the scariest looking thing she had ever seen but his eyes and voice were so kind, she decided that he would not hurt her.
A big kettle hung above the fire and the smell was wonderful. She agreed and they sat; big, tall Alfred, the bear, and little tiny, Rose, the skunk, and ate stew. Alfred showed her his cabin that he built from trees that fell in a storm. He told her jokes because that is what Alfred is good at and she laughed and laughed until her sides hurt.
The light of the sun began to fade so Rose said her good-byes and promised to return tomorrow and bring him more friends to meet. On her way back, her brother, Zach, popped through the bushes.
“Where have you been?! I have been looking for you all day!”
“Well, I smelled wood burning and there was this monster…”
Michelle Gill is a writer, barista, trail walker sometimes runner, disc golfer's wife, Jesus lover, book collector, mama, and old house explorer. Learn more about her story on her website www.maceyhollow.com.
Tales of Macey Hollow
In Macey Hollow moss and trees cover the mountains that surround the hollow. Bumbling waters flow down the creek and over rocks. There are homes in the ground, in the rocks, in the trees, and in their trunks.