As the little girl traveled through the forest, she fought the wind, trying to hold on to her brightly colored balloon. She tried to keep it safe, but it bounced against the jagged branches. Claws clutched the tender sheath, popping the balloon.
The girl emerged from the forest. A dingy bit of rubber trailed behind her on a string. Her shoulders hunched, head bowed, she continued.
Winding through a park, she discovered a man on a bench holding a photograph of a woman. A silent tear escaped, trailing down his cheek. Having nothing else, she offered him the busted balloon. He smiled, taking her gift.
The girl’s eyes widened, her mouth agape, as the tangled string and bit of rubber transformed in the man’s hands, once more, a brightly colored balloon flying high in the air.