The Blue Balloon

April 19, 2011
By kendallcats GOLD, San Diego, California
kendallcats GOLD, San Diego, California
15 articles 0 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
"Dark times lie ahead. Soon we will all have to make the choice between what is right and what is easy." --Albus Dumbledore

Somewhere in a park in California, a boy sits on a bench and mourns the loss of his blue balloon.

He hadn’t meant to lose it—blue is his favorite color—but his sister had teased him (“Just how long are you going to carry that stupid balloon, anyway?”) and, in his efforts to retaliate, the ribbon had slipped out of his hand and trailed along into the sky.

His sister had laughed, then, but had run off shortly after, leaving the boy standing alone in the middle of the field. His eyes, stinging with loss, were glassy, but he wills himself not to cry, thinking that it was only a “stupid balloon”, after all.

Now, though, he finds he has no appetite for playing, as he usually does. Instead, he sits on his bench and kicks his feet in the pile of leaves below. His face is turned to the clouds, searching for the tell-tale white string to identify the balloon that so easily blends with the color of the sky. He wishes, then, that his balloon was some other color, like red—at least he would be able to track it on its happy journey to the sun.

Heaving a sigh, he wraps his jacket tighter around himself and thinks perhaps it is time to go home. He slides off the park bench and kicks the leaf pile one last time before he turns to go.

He walks a few steps, looking at the ground the whole way, until he looks up and stops. His sister stands on the path in front of him. She is holding a—his—balloon. The boy’s eyes grow round as he stares at her, wondering.

“I found it in that tree over there,” she says, pointing behind her. She smiles and extends the balloon to her brother.

He smiles back at her, takes the string into his own small hand, and together they turn to walk back home.

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This article has 2 comments.

on Jun. 29 2011 at 6:47 pm
AvengedJasonfoldForever BRONZE, Middletown, Delaware
3 articles 0 photos 39 comments

Favorite Quote:
"You are about to die. Scream if you Must." -Fire Emblem character

This is a great story and you show some really good writing ability. However, there's a couple big problems that are easy to fix, and then this isn't far from being one of the best stories I've read on teenink.

Problem 1 is past vs present tense. I'd actually suggest mixing them up more, Set the scene in present tense and then mention past actions. I think James Joyce does this a lot, especially in a short story called "Evyln" (which I actually liked)

If not, a lot of good authors do this in short stories. I Know Catcher in the Rye is full of it too if you still have to see how it's done.

Another thing; "holding a--his--balloon"

I see what you're trying to do there, but going a--his-- looks like a sneeze. I would just say "she's holding his balloon"

Finally, I'm reading The Shining by Stephen King, and he does the most amazing job getting inside the little boy's head from a 3rd person POV. I'm still trying to learn how he does it, but I know studying that will help you perfect getting inside the kid's head in this story. You're close, but not quite there. Not quite perfect. >:P

bookseller said...
on May. 6 2011 at 5:10 pm
I LOVE this!! Great job! Simple story with so much feeling!

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