In seconds it was colossal. She could do nothing but stare in horror and fatal curiosity. Like a possessed body it whipped and cracked and stretched farther over her garden, clumps of leaves forming a stupendous shadow that enveloped sunlight entirely. Its branches flailed and threw soil that dripped with a dark red substance, uprooted vines heaving as they clung to its branches like threatened by a great fear of heights. The sycamore tree was relentless, tearing its limbs from the dirt and unearthing fat centipedes and the blackest of worms and snapping insects that soared through the air and slapped the fence with such force that it compelled its wooden beams to their sides, the carcasses of beetles and spiders splayed like abstract. The bark of the plant peeled back in a sickly manner and high above and between the foliage exposed a grey, skin-like membrane that throbbed within the trunk, a heaving creature expanding outward until it stopped and the birds hummed and screeched as their nests flitted down towards the ungodly mess of dirt, blood, and flowers and it was silent for a moment.

A great whistle rustled from above and shattered the air as the thing shot its roots down like stems of some overgrown vermin, as if to snatch the young girl’s body and shoot her off far into the sky. Instead its fat veins plowed into the garden before her, groaning and churning under the soil until it had conceived a gargantuan curvature of entwined roots. There stood before her a brooding entryway, for which between muddy walls laid a bizarre road. Impossibly far beyond the dark, a neon sign twinkled: SWEETLAND.

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