Up, Up, and Away

Here we go with another Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge Wednesday. (that was a mouthful) Anyway, what follows is the prompt and then my story for this weeks challenge. Read the piece, like it, (How could you not?) and then move on over to the voting site and hit a quick mark for me.

I forewarn you though, no one dies in the making of this story. Almost seems a tragedy for that to happen.

Up, Up, and Away

up, up, and away

photo by K. S. Brooks

When Janus Yasoprovik was a boy, he dreamed of becoming a daredevil. Life’s currents did not carry him in that direction. He became an accountant.

But Janus was never one to let his day job get in the way of adventure. On every vacation, he would indulge his inner daredevil, in the most unaccountant-like activities he could contrive. From swimming with sharks to running with the bulls, Janus seemed intent on breaking every bone in his body. And he did. But of all Janus’ adventures, it is hard to top what happened on his ride in the hot air balloon…

Janus always wanted to see Mount Olympus from a balloon, he couldn’t pass up the chance. The sunny, warm air in Athens on that spring morning bolstered the excitement he felt.

Iaret Baris, his contact, had assured him was top notch and they were living up to his words. The set up and subsequent launch of the balloon happened with precision. As it turned out, the launch wasn’t the problem.

When they hit the ceiling of their max height the atmosphere changed. From clear skies with light wind, to heavy grey clouds and a strong northerly breeze, the balloons were pushed past their original flight plan. To make matters worse, The other two balloons were no longer visible and their radios went silent.

Mr. Baris translated the words of their flight captain to Janus as he fiddled with the burner in an attempt to lower the balloon to a manageable height. The winds held the balloon fast as they pushed it further north. “Look!” Iaret cried. “By the gods.” His arm bounced with his excitement. Unsteady, he pointed in the distance at the approaching mountain peaks.

Sunlight cut through the distant sky and splashed across the highest peak, or at least what should have been the highest peak. A golden city rested at the crest of the mountain. Towers cut through the passing clouds as the wind pushed them straight toward the city.

No movement, no life, could be seen anywhere in the city as their balloon touched down.

What do you think happened in the city?

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