I look at the array of buttons, switches and knobs in front of me – my training never mentioned this many. What did the bright green one do again? And the large lever? That was over there by the edge in my training, not in the middle where it is now.

Take the new model, they said, you’ll be OK, they said. I’m obviously not OK. The radio doesn’t work – not needed, we’ll be monitoring everything, they said. Just steer, they said, the course is already set… steer? With what? And what course?

What does that beeping mean? Ah – the monitor has switched on. Ah – foreign language – I can’t read the text. The beeps are getting louder – closer together.

I’ll pull this middle lever here, it looks like the one in the flight academy’s simulator that lifted or lowered the thing, maybe it wasn’t the one by the edge after all. Good, that seemed to work, it feels as though I’m going up – and the monitor’s gone off again.

Wait a minute – yes, I remember. When the bright green light comes on, press the button. That will command the cameras to take their shots. I wish I knew where I was. And why do they want photos of the fields around here from up in the skies anyway? It’s kind of odd, if you ask me. I only came in to work on reception, and here I am, day one, flying this balloon.

Posted for Doug’s Minmin Challenge. This week, the prompt is ‘Spy Balloon’. The requirement is to post no more than 250 words.

19 thoughts

  1. I love the confusion of your main character that comes over in this, Tom. A really good take on the prompt – but also anybody’s first day in a new job where they’re asked to do the unexpected and feel they have to give it a go.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’d say, in un-invited commentary perhaps the antagonist just, ‘wing it’
    …ah! the prompt word. lol

    (but, now that I’ve used the idiom ‘just wing it’ it’s got me wondering)

    will be back it’n it’s anything cool

    Liked by 2 people

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