“Mass ascension. Sounds like a church function.” She blew a speck off her lens.
Zach laughed. “It can be spiritual.”
Armed with her camcorder and a new digital SLR camera, Darcy roamed the fairgrounds in search of some perfect shots. A brightly colored balloon demanded her attention. She framed her photo and was about to snap the picture when someone pushed her from behind. She stumbled forward, regained her balance, and spun, ready to admonish the person, but she came face-to-face with a billowing Mickey Mouse balloon. She burst into laughter.
Beside her a half-inflated dairy cow bobbed to life. In minutes the envelope dwarfed Darcy. Sandwiched between Mickey and the cow, she waited for the animals to take flight before they released her from their silky folds.
Music from the marching band filled the air, the melody muffled by the ferocious roar of propane burners as dozens of colorful balloons blocked the sky. Enthralled, Darcy snapped over fifty stills. She turned to leave, but all around her envelopes had swelled to life, constricting the narrow walking paths to slits. Afraid she’d miss mass ascension, she forced her way through the nylon and polyester forest to the edge of the fairgrounds, then jogged back to Colton’s launch site.
“Perfect timing,” said Zach. “We just finished the pilot briefing.”
Darcy wiggled out of her jacket. “Glad I took your advice and layered.”
“Told you. Sun comes up and the weather warms in a hurry.” He helped her into his tethered balloon.
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