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Short story: Balloon

I felt elated. The cold air blasting through my delicate structure, or lack of structure. The curt winds bursting from the metal nozzle, turned to a notch emoting just the right sensation of adrenaline pumping and practicality. When the nozzle is turned off I’m given a forceful knot and handed off to the jubilance of the small child waiting for me. I can’t decide what I’m destined to do or how to provide, for besides the rubbery texture of my body and the long ribbon that extends from this synthetic material and into the tiny grasp of the girl, I see no other function than floating amidst the air.

The so-felt spontaneity of being given this life has left slightly faster than it came. I feel the hot surge of the afternoon rays being slightly boiled into the surface of my elastic physique once the girl pushes open the glass doors. I’ve dreamt of the outside, as I had seen so many of the one’s like me being blown up and headed out these doors. Infamously, I realize now, as the sun packs on even harder.

She starts to run, a slow jog at first until her mother, I presume, is spotted, and her legs run and her body pushes on with purpose. Her smile, broad and yet somehow relaxed when she sees her daughter appear, helps this awkward and arduous transition seem easier. The new found leisure that springs inside me helps me bounce faster up and down when the little girl starts to move about again. Skipping and dancing and playing around her smile matches her mother’s exactly.

Until she falls, tripped by an unremorseful rock who doesn’t offer help. A neat cut is sliced down her knee and I suddenly feel her grasp on my ribbon begin to detach and her hand completely lets go when she holds her knee in pain. Drops of blood trickle onto the unapologetic cement parking lot ground.

I start to drift, something I don’t remember seeing from the others who went through the doors. I suddenly feel like I’m flying, into the sky, into the air far above the little girl on the ground. I can’t watch as her mother carries her into the car and the the little girl’s hand points in my direction when the look of jubilance is washed off with tears.

All I can see now is the endless sky, traced with white clouds that seemed so small in her hands but so infinite and tender when I suddenly realize I’ve been completely engulfed in them. It seems as if one poke will make them shatter and fall onto all the world below. But they seem to puff around, and break, but form again after a few minutes. I can’t remember much of anything before these moments. I vaguely remember the girl’s laugh and hysterics after I left. It all seems very insignificant and very beige now. My whole life before this existence in time seems awfully unproductive. So unproductive that my moments amongst clouds seems oddly worthwhile.

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