Discover the magic of friendship, loss, and redemption in the fantastical land of Terabithia.
Jesse Aarons was determined to become the fastest runner in school. He spent all summer training, running up and down the dusty country road near his house, timing himself with a stopwatch, and pushing himself to run faster, harder, and longer. He wanted to prove to everyone that he was better than they thought he was. He wanted to show his dad, his teachers, his classmates, and most importantly, himself, that he was capable of achieving greatness.
But all his training was for naught when Leslie Burke arrived in class on the first day of school. Jesse had never seen anyone like her before. She was tall and thin, with long, dark hair that fell in waves down her back, and bright, intense eyes that seemed to see everything. She wore a denim skirt and a t-shirt with a picture of a band he’d never heard of, and carried a backpack covered in patches and pins.
As soon as she walked in, Jesse knew she was trouble. She walked with a confidence that bordered on arrogance, and seemed to look down on everyone in the room. When the teacher asked her to introduce herself, she stood up and said, “My name is Leslie Burke, and I just moved here from the city. I’m here because my parents want me to get away from all the noise and pollution. I like to read, draw, and explore. I don’t like sports or stupid games.”
Jesse felt a surge of anger rise inside him. Who did this girl think she was, coming into his school and acting like she was too good for everyone? He scowled at her and muttered under his breath.
But Leslie seemed to sense his hostility. She turned to him and said, “Hey, you’re Jesse, right? The kid who thinks he’s the fastest runner in school? I bet I could beat you in a race.”
Jesse couldn’t believe it. This girl, who didn’t know anything about him or his abilities, was challenging him to a race? He bristled at the suggestion and said, “You’re on. Name the time and place.”
Leslie smirked and said, “How about tomorrow, after school? Meet me by the old rope swing at the creek. And bring your stopwatch.”
Jesse nodded, feeling a mix of excitement and dread. He had never been so annoyed and intrigued by someone at the same time. Who was this Leslie Burke, and why did she seem to rile him up so much?
As the day wore on, Jesse found his thoughts drifting back to Leslie. He couldn’t concentrate in class, couldn’t focus on his homework, couldn’t eat his dinner. All he could think about was the race. He felt like he had something to prove, not just to Leslie, but to himself.
When he went to bed that night, he lay awake, staring at the ceiling, imagining himself running faster than he ever had before, leaving Leslie in the dust, and proving to everyone that he was the best.
But little did he know that the race would change his life in ways he could never have imagined.
Chapter 1: The Race
The next day, after school, Jesse made his way to the old rope swing at the creek. He could feel his heart pounding in his chest, his palms getting sweaty. He had never been so nervous before a race.
As he approached the rope swing, he saw Leslie waiting for him. She was leaning against a tree, wearing a pair of sneakers and a yellow t-shirt that made her skin glow in the sunlight. She looked like she didn’t have a care in the world, like she was just there to have fun.
Jesse scowled at her. He didn’t like the way she seemed so relaxed, like she didn’t take the race seriously. He had been training all summer for this moment, and he was determined to win.
Leslie seemed to sense his hostility again. She arched an eyebrow and said, “You ready to lose, Jesse?”
Jesse gritted his teeth and nodded. He pulled out his stopwatch and set it on a nearby rock. “The race is to the bridge and back, right? Whoever gets there first wins?”
Leslie nodded. “Deal. You ready?”
Jesse nodded back. “Go!”
They both took off, sprinting towards the bridge. Jesse could feel the wind rushing past his face, the dirt kicking up behind him. He had never run so fast before, but he knew he had to keep going. He could hear Leslie’s footsteps behind him, her breaths coming fast and strong.
As they reached the bridge, Jesse turned around and saw that Leslie was right behind him. She was breathing heavily, but she was still standing, still in the race.
Jesse didn’t have time to think, though. He turned around again and started running back towards the starting line. He could hear Leslie’s footsteps pounding on the ground behind him, getting closer and closer.
He pushed himself harder, his legs burning, his lungs struggling to keep up. He could see the finish line in sight, the stopwatch on the rock, the trees in the distance.
But just as he was about to cross the finish line, something unexpected happened. Leslie suddenly passed him, her long legs taking huge strides, her breaths coming in gasps.
Jesse couldn’t believe it. How could this girl, this city girl, this Leslie Burke, beat him in a race? He had trained all summer for this, had been running since he was a little boy, had never lost a race before.
But Leslie just smiled at him, her eyes shining with triumph. “Looks like I won, Jesse. Better luck next time.”
Jesse was too stunned to say anything. He watched as Leslie walked away, her back straight, her head held high. He felt like he had been punched in the stomach. He had lost, and it hurt more than he could express.
As he walked home, the sun setting behind him, the dust settling in the air, he couldn’t shake the feeling of defeat. He had been so sure he was going to win, so confident in his abilities. But Leslie had beaten him fair and square.
He didn’t know it yet, but that race was just the beginning. It would lead him down a path he had never expected, to a place where monsters, trolls, ogres, and giants ruled, and where he would find a friend, a companion, and a confidante who would change his life forever.
Chapter 2: Terabithia
Jesse Aarons and Leslie Burke had created their own world in the woods near their homes. They had decided to name it Terabithia. It was a place that only they knew about, a magical kingdom filled with monsters, trolls, ogres, and giants. They ruled as king and queen, and it became their escape from reality.
Every day after school, Jesse and Leslie would meet up at the secret place in the woods. They would cross over the creek by swinging on a rope, and then they would enter Terabithia. The two friends would create stories and adventures, and they would act them out in their new world.
Some days they would fight off trolls that had stolen treasure and rescued a kidnapped princess, while other days they would climb the highest peak in Terabithia to find the magic flower that would cure any ailment. There was always something new and exciting to do in Terabithia.
Jesse had never been so happy. He had never had a friend like Leslie before, and he felt like he could be himself around her. They shared their secret jokes and silly dances, and they would laugh until their stomachs hurt.
Leslie was unlike anyone else Jesse knew. She was smart, creative, and had a wild imagination. She would tell Jesse about her travels and adventures in other parts of the world, and he would listen intently, amazed. Leslie had a way of making Jesse see the world differently, and for that, he was grateful.
One day, Leslie suggested they build a castle in Terabithia. Jesse thought it was a great idea, and they set to work right away. They gathered sticks and branches, and they used rocks to create a moat around the castle. It took them days, but when they were finished, it was the most magnificent castle Jesse had ever seen.
They decided to have a grand opening, inviting all the creatures in Terabithia to join them. They dressed up in their finest clothes, made crowns out of leaves, and danced around the castle to the sound of Leslie’s flute.
The centaurs came, as did the fairies, the unicorns, and even the giant trolls. They all celebrated the new castle, and Jesse felt like he was on top of the world. He had never felt so special and important.
As the sun began to set, Jesse and Leslie sat on the steps of their castle, watching as the creatures of Terabithia began to leave. Leslie turned to Jesse and said, “This is the best day of my life.”
Jesse smiled and replied, “Mine too.”
From that day forward, Jesse and Leslie would continue to create new adventures and stories in Terabithia. It was their magical escape from reality, a place where they could be themselves and forget about the troubles of the world.
But little did they know, their kingdom would soon be threatened by forces they could not control. The bullies at school would soon discover their secret place, and their peaceful world would be shattered.
Jesse and Leslie had no idea what was coming, but they knew that they had Terabithia, and each other, to rely on. They would face whatever challenges came their way together, as king and queen of their magical kingdom.
Chapter 3: The Bullies
Jesse and Leslie’s secret world of Terabithia had been their escape from the real world. It was a place where they could be free to imagine and create without fear of judgment. But their sanctuary was soon interrupted by a group of bullies at school.
Jesse and Leslie were used to the taunts and torment from the school bullies. But when Janice Avery, the biggest and meanest bully of them all, began to take notice of them, they knew they were in trouble.
Janice Avery was a large, intimidating girl who had been held back a year. She had a reputation for being a troublemaker and a bully. Everyone was afraid of her, including the teachers.
Jesse and Leslie tried to ignore Janice and her gang, but they soon discovered that their secret world of Terabithia was no longer a secret. Janice had seen them entering the woods and had followed them.
They arrived one day to find their kingdom in shambles. Trees had been cut down, the castle had been destroyed, and their magical creatures had been decapitated.
Jesse and Leslie were devastated. They knew they had to do something to stop the bullies from destroying their world.
They decided to confront Janice and her gang. They went to her house after school and stood outside her bedroom window. Jesse watched as Janice cried and stuffed her face with food. He felt a twinge of guilt, but he knew he had to be strong.
He called out to her, “We know you’ve been following us. Leave us alone, or we’ll tell everyone your secret.”
Janice was startled and looked out the window. She saw Jesse and Leslie and knew they were serious.
“What secret?” she shouted.
“You know what secret,” Jesse said.
Janice looked scared. “I won’t bother you again,” she said.
Jesse and Leslie left, feeling relieved and proud of themselves for standing up to the bully. They thought their problems were over, but they were wrong.
The next day, Janice Avery didn’t show up to school. Rumors started to spread that she had run away. Everyone was talking about it, and Jesse and Leslie felt guilty.
They went to Janice’s house after school, and her mother answered the door. She was surprised to see them and asked what they wanted.
“We want to see Janice,” Jesse said.
“I’m sorry, she’s not feeling well,” her mother said.
Leslie spoke up, “We just want to make sure she’s okay.”
Her mother hesitated, then finally let them in.
Janice was lying on her bed, looking pale and thin. She looked surprised to see them.
“What do you want?” she asked.
“We just wanted to check up on you,” Jesse said.
Janice looked down at her hands. “I’m sorry for what I did,” she said. “I had no right to destroy your world.”
Jesse and Leslie were surprised. They had expected her to be angry.
“It’s okay,” Leslie said. “We forgive you.”
Janice looked up at them, tears in her eyes. “Thank you,” she said.
Jesse and Leslie left, feeling relieved and happy. They had made peace with their enemy, and they knew that their world of Terabithia would be safe once again.
But their happiness was short-lived. When they returned to school the next day, they discovered that the rumor about Janice running away was false.
Janice had attempted suicide.
Jesse and Leslie were stunned. They couldn’t believe that someone as tough and mean as Janice Avery could be so fragile.
They felt guilty and wondered if they had caused her to do something so drastic. They knew they had to do something to make it up to her.
They decided to visit her in the hospital. They brought her a bouquet of flowers and a card that they had made themselves.
When they walked into her hospital room, Janice looked surprised and confused.
“What are you doing here?” she asked.
“We came to see how you’re doing,” Jesse said.
Janice looked down at her hands. “I’m okay,” she said. “I just want to forget about everything.”
Jesse and Leslie knew they had to be careful. They didn’t want to upset Janice or make her feel worse.
They talked about school and their friendship. They told Janice how much they appreciated her apology and how much they admired her for being brave enough to apologize.
Janice listened, and a small smile appeared on her face.
“Thanks,” she said.
Jesse and Leslie left the hospital feeling relieved. They knew they had done the right thing, but they still felt guilty about what had happened.
When they returned to the woods, they found that their kingdom of Terabithia had been rebuilt. The trees had grown back, and the castle had been restored.
Jesse and Leslie knew that their world would always be their sanctuary. No matter what happened in the real world, they could always escape to Terabithia and be together.
They ruled as king and queen, and their magical kingdom continued to grow and thrive.
Chapter 4: The Grief
Jesse sat in his room, staring blankly at the wall. He couldn’t believe that Leslie was gone. It all seemed like a bad dream. He felt like he was drowning in a sea of grief and guilt. If only he had been there to save her. If only…
Jesse’s parents tried to console him, but nothing they said could ease the pain. They seemed to be going through the motions, trying to keep everything together for Jesse’s sake. But he could see the sadness in their eyes. They had loved Leslie too, and her death had affected them deeply.
Jesse’s little sister May Belle was the only one who seemed to understand. She would sit with him for hours, holding his hand and listening to his stories about Terabithia. May Belle had always been fascinated by the magical kingdom that Jesse and Leslie had created, and now it seemed to be the only thing that could bring Jesse any comfort.
One day, as Jesse sat in his room, he heard a knock at the door. It was Miss Edmunds, his music teacher. She had always been kind to Jesse, and he had a crush on her. He was surprised to see her, and even more surprised when she invited him to go on a field trip with her.
Miss Edmunds took Jesse to the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. They spent the day wandering through the galleries, looking at paintings and sculptures. For a few hours, Jesse forgot about his grief and immersed himself in the beauty of the art. He even found himself laughing at some of Miss Edmunds’ jokes.
But as they walked out of the gallery, Jesse’s world came crashing back down. He remembered that Leslie would have loved to see the art, and he felt guilty for enjoying himself without her. He wondered if she was watching over him, if she was disappointed that he was having fun without her.
As they drove back to Lark Creek, Jesse sat silently in the car. Miss Edmunds tried to make conversation, but he couldn’t find the words to respond. He felt like he was suffocating.
When they arrived back in Lark Creek, Jesse asked Miss Edmunds to drop him off at the woods near his house. He needed to be alone. He walked through the woods, feeling the crunch of leaves beneath his feet. He missed Leslie’s laughter, her smile, her voice. He missed Terabithia.
As he approached the creek, he saw a large fallen tree that reminded him of the one that had led to Terabithia. He climbed on top of it, feeling the rough bark against his skin. He closed his eyes and imagined Leslie sitting next to him, telling him stories about the magical kingdom they had ruled together.
He opened his eyes and saw May Belle standing at the edge of the creek. She was holding a small wooden boat, one that she had made herself.
“I thought you might want to sail it in the creek,” she said, holding out the boat.
Jesse took it from her, feeling the weight of the wood in his hands. He remembered how Leslie had taught him to carve, how they had made boats together. He smiled weakly at May Belle, grateful for her understanding.
They walked down to the edge of the creek together, and Jesse set the boat on the water. It floated peacefully downstream, bobbing up and down in the gentle current. Jesse watched it until it disappeared from view.
“Leslie would have loved that,” he said quietly.
May Belle put her arm around him, and they walked back to the house together. Jesse still missed Leslie terribly, but he knew that he had to keep going. He had to keep Terabithia alive, for Leslie’s sake.
As he lay in bed that night, Jesse thought about everything that had happened. He felt a sense of warmth in his chest, a flicker of hope. He knew that the road ahead would be long and difficult, but he also knew that he wasn’t alone. He had his family, he had May Belle, and he had the memory of Leslie. He closed his eyes and imagined her smile, and he fell asleep feeling a little less alone.
Chapter 5: The Rebuild
After the destruction of Terabithia by the school bullies, Jesse is left feeling lost and broken. He spends days mourning the loss of his magical kingdom, but he knows deep down that Leslie wouldn’t want him to give up. With the help of his younger sister May Belle, Jesse begins the arduous task of rebuilding Terabithia.
May Belle is eager to help her older brother in any way she can, and together they gather materials to start building. They gather rocks, sticks, and leaves to create a new entrance to Terabithia. They find the perfect spot near a creek with a small waterfall. Jesse begins to form a plan for the new kingdom, and he decides to make it even more magical than before.
He envisions a castle that sits high on a hill, surrounded by a moat. The castle will have a drawbridge and a throne room where he and May Belle can sit as king and queen. The kingdom will have a garden filled with flowers, an enchanted forest with talking trees, and a crystal-clear lake that reflects the stars.
Jesse is determined to make Terabithia even more magical than before, and he spends all his free time working on it. He and May Belle have grand plans for the kingdom, and they spend hours discussing the layout and design.
As they build, they find that their grief begins to fade, and they feel closer than ever. May Belle looks up to her brother with admiration, and Jesse is grateful to have her by his side. They begin to see progress in their work, and they are filled with hope that they can make Terabithia even better than before.
One afternoon, while they are working on the castle, Jesse hears May Belle singing softly to herself. He stops what he’s doing and watches as his sister twirls around with a stick in her hand. Suddenly, she trips and falls, and Jesse rushes to her side.
“Are you okay?” He asks, concern etched on his face.
May Belle nods, and a small smile crosses her face. “I was just pretending to be a fairy,” she says.
Jesse smiles and takes her hand. “You can be anything you want to be in Terabithia,” he says.
They continue to work on the kingdom, and as they do, they begin to feel a sense of peace. The world outside of Terabithia may be harsh and unforgiving, but in their magical kingdom, anything is possible.
As the weeks pass, they finish the castle and begin work on the enchanted forest. They plant flowers and create paths through the trees. They even find a clearing where they can have picnics and tell stories.
One day, while they’re taking a break from building, Jesse and May Belle sit by the creek and watch the water rush by. May Belle begins to sing, and Jesse joins in. They sing a song they used to sing with Leslie, and as they do, they feel her presence with them.
“Leslie would be proud of us,” May Belle says, wiping a tear from her eye.
Jesse nods, and they sit in silence for a few moments, taking in the beauty of their surroundings.
As the sun begins to set, Jesse and May Belle know that they’ve accomplished something incredible. They’ve transformed a devastated land into a magical kingdom. They’ve created a place where they can escape from reality and feel a sense of peace.
As they head back to their house, Jesse feels a sense of gratitude. He knows that while they’ll never forget Leslie, they have something new to cherish. Something that Leslie helped to create.
Terabithia may have been destroyed, but Jesse and May Belle have created something even more magical. A place where anything is possible, and where they can feel close to Leslie.
Chapter 6: The Betrayal
Jesse had always been a strong advocate for standing up to bullies, but sometimes even he couldn’t protect those he cared about. After Leslie’s death, May Belle had become his responsibility, and he was determined to keep her safe from the school bullies. But when he found out that they were targeting her, all of his anger and grief boiled over.
He knew that he had to do something to stop them, something that would show them that they couldn’t mess with May Belle. So, he came up with a plan to embarrass the ringleader of the bullies, Janice Avery. He and May Belle spent hours creating a fake love letter to Janice, signed by one of the school’s popular boys.
Jesse slipped the letter into Janice’s locker the next day, and the plan worked perfectly. Janice was humiliated in front of the entire school, and Jesse felt a sense of satisfaction and relief. But the victory was short-lived.
The next day, when Jesse arrived at school, he was met with anger and hostility from Janice’s friends. They had figured out that he was the one behind the fake letter, and they were out for revenge. Jesse tried to ignore them, but the bullying only intensified.
He tried to focus on Terabithia, but even that sanctuary was tainted by the betrayal. He couldn’t shake the feeling that he had gone too far, that he had betrayed his own values of kindness and forgiveness. He tried to talk to May Belle about his guilt, but she didn’t seem to understand.
One day, Jesse was walking home from school when he heard a car honking from behind him. He turned around to see Janice Avery’s boyfriend, Gary Fulcher, driving towards him at full speed. Jesse barely had time to jump out of the way before the car slammed into a tree.
He was shaken and terrified, but he knew that he couldn’t keep hiding from Janice and her friends. He had to face them head-on and make things right. So, he went to Janice’s house and begged for her forgiveness.
To his surprise, Janice didn’t lash out at him or seek revenge. Instead, she broke down in tears and confessed that she had been bullied herself, both at home and at school. Jesse realized that he and Janice had more in common than he had ever realized, and he felt a deep sense of compassion for her.
In the end, Jesse and Janice became unlikely friends, bonding over their shared experiences of pain and loss. Jesse learned that forgiveness and empathy were more powerful than revenge, and that even the most unexpected people could become allies. And as he lay in bed that night, he felt a sense of peace and hope that he hadn’t felt since Leslie’s death.
Chapter 7: The Forgiveness
Jesse felt numb as he walked away from Janice Avery, his former best friend whom he had just revenge-bullied. He knew that what he did was wrong, but his anger towards Janice for bullying his little sister May Belle had overwhelmed him. Now he was left with the consequences of his actions.
As he made his way home, he felt like the weight of the world was on his shoulders. He knew he had hurt Janice, May Belle, and himself. He didn’t know how to make things right.
When he got home, he found his family waiting for him. May Belle had already told them everything, and they were worried about him. His father, who had always been distant, put a hand on his shoulder, an unfamiliar gesture of comfort.
“We’re here for you, son,” his father said softly. “No matter what happens, we love you.”
Jesse felt a lump form in his throat. He had never heard those words from his father before. He realized that his family had always loved him, even when he had felt alone and abandoned.
Over the next few days, Jesse tried to avoid Janice at school. He didn’t know how to face her after what he had done. But eventually, she cornered him in the hallway.
“I know you did it,” she said, her voice low and threatening. “And I know why. You think you’re better than me, don’t you? You and your little friend Leslie, thinking you’re so special with your make-believe world.”
Jesse could feel his anger rising again, but he tried to stay calm. “I’m sorry, Janice. What I did was wrong. I shouldn’t have taken matters into my own hands.”
Janice snorted. “Apology not accepted.”
Jesse didn’t know what else to say. He felt like he was stuck in a never-ending cycle of pain and regret.
But then Leslie’s parents reached out to him. They invited him over for dinner, saying they wanted to talk about Leslie and Terabithia. Jesse was hesitant, but he knew he needed to face his grief and guilt head-on.
When he arrived at the Burke’s house, he was surprised to see that Janice was there too. Leslie’s parents had invited her as well, wanting to facilitate a conversation about forgiveness.
As they sat down to eat, Jesse felt awkward and uncomfortable. But then Mrs. Burke started talking about Leslie, reminiscing about her daughter’s joy and creativity. Jesse found himself opening up about his own experiences with Leslie and Terabithia.
Janice listened quietly, and Jesse could see the pain in her eyes. He knew that she had her own struggles, her own demons. He remembered how he used to be friends with her, before everything had gone wrong. He wondered if there was a way to make things right between them.
After dinner, Mrs. Burke brought out a photo album filled with pictures of Leslie and Terabithia. As they looked through the pictures, Jesse started to feel a sense of peace. He realized that Leslie’s memory lived on, not just in his heart but in the hearts of everyone who had known her.
When it was time to leave, Janice surprised him by speaking up.
“I’m sorry,” she said, her eyes filling with tears. “I’m sorry for everything I did to May Belle, and for everything I said about Leslie and Terabithia. I was jealous, and I took it out on you guys. I know I can never make up for what I did, but I want to try to be a better person.”
Jesse felt a wave of relief wash over him. He knew that forgiveness wasn’t easy, but it was necessary for healing.
“I forgive you, Janice,” he said, surprising himself with the words. “I know we can’t go back to the way things were, but maybe we can start fresh.”
Janice nodded, and they hugged awkwardly. Jesse could feel the tension between them, but he also felt a sense of hope.
As he walked home that night, he realized that forgiveness wasn’t just about letting go of anger and hurt. It was about recognizing that everyone had their own struggles, their own pain. It was about being kind, even when it was hard. And most of all, it was about creating a better world, one where love and compassion could overcome hate and anger.
Jesse knew that Terabithia would always be a part of him, a reminder of Leslie and everything she had taught him about courage and imagination.
But now he also knew that the real magic wasn’t just in Terabithia, but in the bonds of forgiveness and love that could bridge even the most difficult gaps between people.
Chapter 8: The Legacy
It had been years since Jesse had last set foot in Terabithia. The memory of Leslie and their magical kingdom still haunted him, but he knew he needed to return. He wanted to share the legacy of Terabithia with his own children and pay tribute to the friend who had meant so much to him.
As Jesse drove his family down the winding dirt road, memories flooded back. His heart raced as he realized how much he missed this place. The trees towered above like old sentinels, welcoming him back to their secret kingdom. He felt as though he was returning home after a long journey.
As they reached the clearing, Jesse saw that Terabithia had changed. The old treehouse had been replaced with a more elaborate structure, and the fields were filled with new creatures. He could see the evidence of new rulers, but he was not surprised. Leslie always said that Terabithia would never perish as long as someone still believed in it.
Jesse’s children ran out of the car and began exploring the kingdom. They squealed with joy as they discovered a hidden grove filled with glittering fairies. The thrill of the adventure was contagious, and Jesse found himself laughing along with them. It felt like time had stood still since he last visited the kingdom.
As they continued their exploration, they came across a group of kids who were playing in the meadow. Jesse recognized a few of them as the children of his old classmates. They were laughing and playing, just like he and Leslie did all those years ago. Jesse felt a pang of nostalgia as he watched them. He couldn’t help but wonder if they knew the legacy of Terabithia.
One girl, in particular, caught Jesse’s attention. She had curly brown hair and bright blue eyes, just like Leslie. He felt a lump form in his throat as he realized how much she reminded him of his old friend. He watched as she led the other children into the forest, and he knew that Terabithia was in good hands.
As the sun began to set, Jesse gathered his family together. They sat on the edge of the meadow, looking out over the magical kingdom. Jesse felt a sense of peace wash over him as he realized that Leslie’s legacy was alive and well. Terabithia had become a place of refuge for generations of children, just like it had been for him and Leslie.
Jesse took a deep breath and began to speak. He told his children about the magical kingdom he and Leslie had created, and how it had helped him through some of the hardest times in his life. He shared his memories of his best friend, and the lessons she had taught him. He told them about forgiveness, redemption, and the importance of never forgetting the magic of childhood.
When he finished, Jesse’s children hugged him tightly. They told him how much they loved Terabithia, and how grateful they were to have such an amazing place to explore. Jesse smiled, feeling a sense of pride and joy.
As the family prepared to leave, Jesse paused to take one last look at Terabithia. He felt a sense of closure that he hadn’t felt in years. Leslie’s legacy was secure, and he knew that he could finally say goodbye to his old friend.
As they drove away, Jesse couldn’t help but feel a sense of gratitude. Gratitude for Leslie, for the magical kingdom they had created, and for the legacy that would continue to live on. He closed his eyes and smiled, feeling as though he was leaving a part of himself behind in Terabithia. But that was okay – he knew that it would always be there, waiting for anyone who dared to believe in the magic of childhood.
Some scenes from the movie Bridge to Terabithia written by A.I.
EXT. A RURAL TOWN – DAY
Jesse Aarons, a lean and focused 12-year-old boy, practices running in the heat of the day. His father gives him water.
How’s it going, Jess?
Not good. Leslie Burke beat me again.
Who’s Leslie Burke?
New girl in school. She’s from the city and she’s fast. Really fast.
Maybe you should try running with her. She could teach you a thing or two.
Jesse looks at his father, unsure.
EXT. SCHOOL TRACK – DAY
Leslie Burke, a confident and adventurous girl, runs laps around Jesse. He struggles to keep up.
Come on, Jess! You can do it!
I can’t. You’re too fast.
Leslie stops running and looks at Jesse.
You can do anything you want, as long as you believe in yourself.
Jesse looks at Leslie, surprised.
EXT. FOREST – DAY
Leslie leads Jesse through the forest to a secret spot.
This is Terabithia. It’s a magical kingdom filled with monsters, trolls, ogres, and giants.
Jesse looks around, amazed.
How did you find this place?
I discovered it when I was exploring the woods. Do you want to be king or queen?
King, of course.
I’ll be your queen, then.
They rule Terabithia together, their friendship growing stronger with each passing day.
Jesse Aarons: 12-year-old boy, an aspiring artist and runner.
Leslie Burke: 12-year-old girl, new in town, smart and creative.
May Belle Aarons: Jesse’s 7-year-old sister, looks up to Jesse and Leslie.
Small town in rural America, lush forests that serve as the gateway to Terabithia.
Leslie: “We need to make Terabithia bigger and better than ever before.”
Jesse: “How are we going to do that? The bullies destroyed everything.”
Leslie: “We’ll start from scratch. Together we can do anything.”
EXT. THE FOREST – DAY
JESSE and LESLIE are walking along a path in the forest, holding hands. MAY BELLE trails behind them.
“I can’t believe it’s all gone. Everything we built.”
“Well, we’ll just have to build it all over again, won’t we?”
“What, by ourselves?”
“Can I help too?”
“Of course, May Belle. The more, the merrier.”
They walk deeper into the woods until they reach a clearing. Leslie pulls out some rope from her backpack and starts to mark out the boundaries of Terabithia.
“What kind of creatures do you want to add to Terabithia?”
“How about some elves and fairies? And maybe a few unicorns?”
“Sounds perfect. And I’ll add some waterfalls and a castle for us to rule from.”
(jumping up and down)
“I want to be a princess!”
“You got it, May Belle. You can be the princess of Terabithia.”
They spend the rest of the day working on Terabithia, building and designing their own magical kingdom, filled with wonder and imagination.
As the sun sets, Jesse, Leslie, and May Belle sit on a log, admiring their handiwork.
“It’s even better than before.”
“And it’s all ours.”
(hugging Leslie and Jesse)
“I love Terabithia.”
Jesse and Leslie watch as May Belle runs off into the sunset, her laughter echoing in the forest.
“Terabithia is more than just a place. It’s a state of mind.”
“And we rule it together. King and queen of Terabithia.”
Leslie and Jesse hold hands and smile at each other, knowing they’ve created something truly magical. The camera pulls away as the sun sets, leaving Terabithia bathed in a warm glow.
– Jesse Aarons, a poor country boy with a talent for running
– Leslie Burke, a wealthy city girl with a wild imagination
– Scott Hoager and Gary Fulcher, the school bullies
– May Belle Aarons, Jesse’s younger sister
– Miss Edmunds, Jesse’s music teacher
Setting: A small rural town in the United States, where Jesse and Leslie attend the same school.
INT. SCHOOL BUS – DAY
Jesse and Leslie sit together on the bus, talking about their plans for Terabithia.
LESLIE: I’ve been thinking about a new monster we can add to Terabithia. It’s called a shadow beast, and it can only be defeated with our special powers.
JESSE: Sounds cool. But maybe we should focus on rebuilding the bridge first. It got pretty damaged last time.
Leslie nods in agreement as she looks out the window. Suddenly, the bus comes to a stop and the bullies, Scott and Gary, get on.
SCOTT: Look who it is, the little prince and princess of Terabithia.
GARY: (laughing) What, did you bring your make-believe friends with you today?
Leslie rolls her eyes and puts up a shield, using her imagination to block out the bullies.
LESLIE: Ignore them, Jesse. They’re not worth it.
But Jesse can’t help feeling angry and frustrated as the bullies continue to taunt them. He looks out the window, lost in thought.
INT. CLASSROOM – DAY
Jesse glares at Scott and Gary as they joke around in the back of the classroom.
MISS EDMUNDS: Jesse, can you please come up here and play the piano for us?
Jesse nods and walks up to the front of the class, trying to focus on the music. But he can’t stop thinking about Terabithia and the bullies.
EXT. SCHOOLYARD – DAY
The bell rings and Jesse rushes outside, hoping to find Leslie. He sees her surrounded by Scott and Gary, who are tearing apart her notebook.
JESSE: (yelling) Hey, leave her alone!
Scott and Gary turn to Jesse, smirking.
SCOTT: What are you gonna do about it, loser?
Jesse takes a deep breath and steps forward.
JESSE: I’m gonna protect my friend, no matter what.
The two boys lunge at Jesse, but he uses his speed to dodge their punches. Leslie uses her imagination to create a shield, and the bullies soon give up and walk away.
LESLIE: (smiling) You were amazing, Jesse. You really are the king of Terabithia.
Jesse smiles back, feeling a sense of pride and accomplishment.
INT. JESSE’S BEDROOM – DAY
Jesse is lying in bed, staring at his ceiling. He pulls the covers over his head, trying to block out the world. May Belle enters the room.
Jesse, you have to come outside. We’re building a new castle in Terabithia.
Jesse groans and rolls over.
I don’t want to go outside. I don’t want to do anything.
Leslie wouldn’t want you to give up on Terabithia. She loved it as much as you did.
Jesse sits up, tears streaming down his face.
It’s all my fault. She wouldn’t have died if it weren’t for me.
You can’t blame yourself for what happened. Leslie wouldn’t want that.
Jesse takes a deep breath and nods.
Okay, I’ll come outside.
INT. TERABITHIA – DAY
Jesse and May Belle are building a new castle out of sticks and leaves. Jesse is starting to smile and laugh.
Look, Jesse, I made a crown for you. You can be the king of Terabithia.
Jesse puts on the crown and sits on the throne they’ve built.
Long live the king!
May Belle laughs and curtsies.
Long live the queen!
They both laugh and start to play make-believe.
Suddenly, Jesse hears a rustling in the bushes.
Did you hear that?
Jesse stands up and walks towards the bushes.
Hello? Is anyone there?
Out of nowhere, a giant ogre jumps out and tackles Jesse to the ground.
Jesse and the ogre engage in a fierce battle, but Jesse eventually defeats it with his stick sword.
That was amazing! You’re a real hero, Jesse.
Jesse smiles, feeling a sense of pride he hasn’t felt in a long time.
Maybe Terabithia isn’t gone after all.
– Jesse Aarons, a young boy grieving the loss of his closest friend, Leslie.
– May Belle, Jesse’s younger sister, who helps him rebuild Terabithia after its destruction.
– Mr. Turner, Jesse and May Belle’s music teacher, who lends his support to their project.
– Trolls, Ogres, and Giants, the imaginary inhabitants of Terabithia brought to life.
Setting: The Woods, where Jesse and May Belle have been rebuilding Terabithia.
[May Belle and Jesse have been working on the project, but it’s not going well.]
May Belle: “We need some help, Jesse. We’re never going to get this done on our own.”
Jesse: “I know, May Belle, but who’s going to help us? We can’t tell anyone about Terabithia.”
May Belle: “What about Mr. Turner? He’s always been nice to us. Maybe he’ll help.”
Jesse: “That’s not a bad idea. Let’s go talk to him.”
[Later, Jesse and May Belle meet with Mr. Turner in the woods.]
Mr. Turner: “Well, hello. What brings you two out here?”
Jesse: “We’re trying to rebuild Terabithia, but we can’t do it alone. We were wondering if you could help us out.”
Mr. Turner: “Of course, I’d be happy to help. What do you need?”
May Belle: “We need some supplies to build our fort and some help moving these heavy rocks.”
Mr. Turner: “Well, I have some spare lumber and some tools in my truck. Let’s go get them.”
[With Mr. Turner’s help, Jesse and May Belle are able to make great progress on their project.]
[Later that day, as they’re putting the finishing touches on Terabithia, they are surprised by the sudden appearance of trolls, ogres, and giants.]
Troll: “Greetings, King Jesse and Queen May Belle. We have come to pledge our allegiance to Terabithia once again.”
Jesse: “I don’t understand. How are you all here?”
Ogre: “With Leslie gone, we thought Terabithia would be lost forever. But you and your sister have brought it back to life.”
Giant: “We will always be here to protect and serve Terabithia.”
[As Jesse and May Belle look on in amazement, the trolls, ogres, and giants disappear back into the woods, leaving them alone once again in Terabithia.]
Jesse: “I…I don’t know what to say. Thank you.”
May Belle: “This is amazing, Jesse. Terabithia really is alive again.”
[As they stand there, taking in the beauty of their magical land, the camera pans out to show the vastness of the woods, and the many adventures that lie ahead for Jesse and May Belle in Terabithia.]
EXT. JESSE’S HOUSE – DAY
Jesse walks nervously up to his front door. He takes a deep breath and enters.
INT. JESSE’S HOUSE- DAY
Jesse’s family is seated at the table, looking expectantly at him. May Belle is sitting on her brother’s lap.
Jesse, please sit down.
Jesse takes a seat at the table, his heart racing.
We need to talk about what happened with Janice Avery.
I know, and I’m sorry. I just wanted to protect May Belle.
We understand that, Jesse. But there are consequences for your actions.
I know, and I’m willing to accept whatever punishment you give me.
It’s not about punishment, son. It’s about learning from your mistakes and moving forward.
Jesse looks relieved at his father’s words.
We forgive you, Jesse. But we need to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.
I understand, Mom.
Can we go to Terabithia now?
The family shares a laugh at May Belle’s innocent question.
Yes, let’s go.
EXT. TERABITHIA – DAY
Jesse and May Belle walk hand in hand through the woods. They stop at a stream.
Leslie would be happy we’re back.
Yeah, she would.
Suddenly, they hear a rustling in the leaves. They turn to see a group of neighborhood kids running towards them.
Hey, can we play too?
Jesse and May Belle share a look, then nod.
Of course. Welcome to Terabithia.
FADE TO BLACK.