Muse on Monday – June 14, 2021, Featuring “Escape from the Treehuggers”

I hope you all had a great weekend and are ready to start a new week! If you are (or know of) an aspiring writer between 8 and 18, check out our Summer 2021 Young Writers Contest. To find out more about it, go to the Writing Contest tab at the top or click on the picture below.

The challenge of Muse on Monday is to write a short story and use the prompt below. If you’re 18 years old or younger, you can submit your story using this link for a chance to have it published next Monday when the new prompt comes out. You just need to submit it before 12:00pm EST next Sunday.

If you have an idea for a prompt for a future week, please send it to me at! It can be in this form or anything else.

Story Prompt: June 14, 2021

Last week, the prompt is the first line of the story. This week the challenge is the same idea. Your challenge is to use the sentence as the first line of your story and then write the rest of the story.

I did a lot of things yesterday, but I forgot to…

And now, a story based on last week’s prompt, the first line of the story.

First Line: After I saw what they did to the tree, I just wanted to get away.

Escape from the Treehuggers

After I saw what they did to the tree, I just wanted to get away. I stepped back slowly, my hiking boots noiseless on the damp leaves. Then I stepped on a dead branch. It broke like a gunshot in the still forest.

The treehuggers turned from their strangling embrace of the dying maple, and I saw interest glimmering in their emerald eyes. The first one took a step towards me.

A second later, I was sprinting away, low branches whipping me in the face and roots seeming to reach up to trip me. I did not dare to look back, but I heard their pattering feet spreading out behind me as they followed me.

“We love you!” they called. “We just want to hug you!”

“I’m not a tree!” I screamed. Then I caught my boot on a rock and sprawled on the ground. I scrambled up to find myself surrounded by the little guys, all looking at me curiously.

“I’m not a tree,” I repeated. “I’m not even a plant.”

“You’re all green and brown,” one pointed out.

“And orange,” I said, pointing to my vest.

“Could be a tiger lily,” another said.

“No, definitely some sort of running ivy,” another said. “It was fast.”

“I’m poison ivy!” I cried, seizing on the idea. “Don’t touch me.”

“Show us your leaves, then.”

I held up both hands with three fingers extended on each. I could see their lips move as they counted.

“You’re pretty talkative for poison ivy,” one commented. “You’re as chatty as a chestnut tree.”

“As gabby as a grapevine,” another said.

“As wordy as a willow!”

They were coming closer now, looking at me with an intense and unsettling gaze.

At that moment, I saw a bear appear through the trees, nosing around a dead stump for something to eat. Normally I would have been terrified but at that moment, he was like a furry brown angel.

“Look,” I shouted, pointing at the bear. “Bear breeches!”

“Bear breeches?” The treehuggers turned to look at the bear. The bear looked up, like someone at a party that just realizes they’re being talked about. I saw the fear grow in its eyes. A minute later I was watching the bear disappearing back through the trees pursued by a pack of treehuggers shouting their love for it. I turned to get back to my car as fast as I could. Maybe I should find a new place to hike on weekends.

Happy writing and have a wonderful week! Come back next Monday for another story prompt.

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