Short Story Time: The Beard Forest

Published August 28, 2009 by Eli Stutz

BeardForest

It’s about time my website started being for kids. So kids…here’s my first post for you. Something I wrote a while back. It’s a short story called “The Beard Forest”. Enjoy!

The Beard Forest

Joel’s father had the fastest growing beard in the world.

Every morning, Joel’s mother trimmed the beard.

Otherwise, Joel’s father would trip on it on his way to work.

In the evening, Joel’s mother trimmed the beard too.

Otherwise, Joel’s father wouldn’t be able to see his dinner.

Joel’s father’s beard did come in handy, though.

On cold days, it kept him warm.

He used it to dry off Joel’s little brother after a bath.

He put things in it that he needed later.

Like snacks. Joel’s father was rarely hungry, because he could usually find a cracker or a piece of salami

that he had put in his beard the day before.

One weekend, Joel’s mother went to visit Joel’s grandmother, who lived in Palm Springs, California.

Before she left, she gave Joel’s father the pair of scissors she used to trim his beard. “Don’t forget to use these,” she said.

But Joel’s father was forgetful. After putting the scissors down somewhere, he had soon forgotten where they were.

So his beard just kept growing.

By Saturday afternoon, it had grown to the size of a small car.

By Saturday night, it was as big as a house. Joel’s father had to sleep in the front yard.

By Sunday morning, the beard had grown into a huge forest.

Joel woke up that morning and came downstairs for breakfast. He couldn’t find his father. He looked around the house and then he looked outside.

That’s when he saw the beard forest.

“My father must be lost in his beard,” said Joel, “I will have to find him”.

Joel plunged into the beard forest to look for his father.

It was dark in there.

Luckily, Joel had taken his special flashlight with him. He shined it on the beard trees above. He shined it on the beard bushes ahead.

From time to time, he saw snacks hanging from the branches, like pretzels or a potato chips.

“Yup, this is my father’s beard, all right,” he said.

Joel was getting hungry, so he plucked some nearby pretzels.

“No shortage of food in here,” he thought, as he munched.

Joel wasn’t looking where he was going. Suddenly, he bumped into something.

The something said, “Outch! Watch where you’re going.”

Joel was startled. He shined his flashlight on the something.

It was a piece of cheese.

“Who are you?” asked Joel.

“Stop shining that thing in my face!” said the piece of cheese.” Joel turned the flashlight away. “Sorry,” he said.

“That’s better,” said the piece of cheese, “My name is Cecilia. And who might you be?”

“I’m Joel. I’m looking for my father,” said Joel. “What are you doing here?”

“I’m one of you father’s snacks,” said Cecilia, “but I guess he was so busy with his new snacks, that he just forgot about me.”

“How do you know how talk?” asked Joel.

“I’ve been here for a long time,” explained Cecilia.

“What kind of cheese are you?” ask Joel.

“You sure ask a lot of questions,” said Cecilia, “I’m cheddar, of course.”

Cecilia agreed to help Joel find his father. “It just so happens that I’m looking for him too,” she said.

They decided to aim for where the beard was thickest.

“That’s probably where my father is,” said Joel.

The hair started to get thick. It also got ticklish. Soon Joel and Cecilia were being tickled by an especially mischevious tickle tree.

“Stop, stop, I can’t!” laughed Joel.

“Ooooh, no, no, let us go – ha, ha!” cackled Cecilia.

“Hoo, hoo!” giggled the tickle tree.

They were in danger of being tickled to death.

Fortunately Joel knew what to do.

“Tickle the tree back!” he said.

Joel and Cecilia started to tickled the tree back. The tickle tree started laughing, “Hoo, hoo! Quit it! No – that’s too much! Hoo, hoo!”

“We won’t tickle you if you won’t tickle us,” said Cecilia.

“Ok, ok – enough! hoo, hoo!” cried the tickle tree, and they all let each other go.

Soon it was hard to keep walking because the hair was so thick.

“Your father sure has a thick beard,” said Cecilia.

They were about to turn back when they heard a faint voice,

“Help! help!” called the voice, “I’m stuck.”

“That sounds like my father,” said Joel.

Joel and Cecilia followed the voice into the thickest part of the beard.

It was so dark and thick in there that even with Joel’s flashlight, they could barely see anything or move anywhere.

Just then, Joel saw his father. He was all tangled up in some very bushy strands of his own beard.

“Joel!” said his father, “you’ve come to save me!”

“Yes,” said Joel.

“Who’s this?” ask Joel’s father.

“I’m Cecilia,” said Cecilia, “one of your snacks. You forgot about me. Thanks a lot.”

“I’m very sorry,” said Joel’s father.

“How are we going to get you out of here?” asked Joel.

“It’s hopeless,” said Joel’s father, “you’d better just leave me here.”

“Wait – I know,” said Cecilia, “eat me!”

“You? But you’re too old,” said Joel’s father, “and moldy.”

“Just do it,” said Cecilia, “I have a good feeling about it. And besides, you don’t have anything to lose.”

She was right. Joel helped Cecilia into his father’s mouth. He had to hold his father’s nose, because Cecilia really was very old and moldy.

“Yecchh!” said Joel’s father.

“Chew me!” shouted Cecilia.

With incredible effort, Joel’s father chewed up Cecilia and swallowed.

His face turned a green, moldy color. Suddenly, his beard started to turn greenish too. Several strands of hair began to fall out.

“It’s working!” said Joel.

Overhead, large tufts of hair began to turn green and fall down.

“Let’s get out of here!” said Joel’s father.

Joel pulled his father out of the large masses of falling hair. They made a run for it. Mounds of green hair was falling all around them. At the last minute, they took a flying leap, and dove out of the forest.

They were safe.

Joel’s mother came home.

“Hey, you shaved!” she said to Joel’s father. “And what’s all this mess outside?”

Joel looked at his father. Joel’s father looked at Joel. They laughed. Then they had a big family hug.

And until this day, Joel’s father never grew a beard again.

But you should see Joel’s moustache.

That’s it! Hope you enjoyed it. Let me know if you’d like more…

Eli

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