“Guys, I need to say something to all of you.” Jun said calmly with his eyes closed. There was nothing that followed Jun’s sentence. That, followed by how Jun clearly demands everyone to pay attention to him when he clears his throat puts everyone on edge due to uncertainty of what Jun will say as a follow up.
Finally, after a few long minutes of awkward silence, Jun opens his eyes and mouth.
“Congratulations to us! We have finally finished our project!” Jun finally said with a very big grin that is rarely seen on his face. There was a short pause as everyone looked at each other, before they could finally cheer in unison.
“Jun! Do not scare us like that ever again!” Toyu complained while trying to hold his laughter.
“Hey, I rarely prank you guys, right? I just felt that it was the right moment to do so.” The big grin still has not escaped Jun’s face.
After a few banter between everyone and Jun, the group of friends finally took their time to have a good look at what they have been doing.
A basket, a burner system, and a sewn material made of nylon. In front of them now stands a gigantic hot air balloon. On the basket, there are 5 packages of parachutes that Ken has prepared. There are also some cylinders for the fuel that Jun bought a few days ago. The gigantic hot air balloon that stands in front of them right now is the proof of their hard work. A symbol of their teamwork made into form. This is the project they have dedicated their last few weeks.
“Now that everything is finished… Ryu, would you do the honor?” Jun looks at Ryu while he pulls the pull-chain of the burner. By doing so, the gas from the cylinder is flowing from the burner, ready to be set on fire.
With eyes full of expectation because her turn is finally up, Ryu takes a very deep breath, even deeper than her warming up session previously.
Ryu creates a countdown inside her own head. Once it reaches 1, Ryu opens up her mouth and a big wave of a very deep red flame bursts out and hits the burner. In a split-second, the burner burns with the same color as Ryu’s flame.
Slowly, the nylon hung on the burner forms its initial shape: a balloon. As seconds go by, the basket also starts to levitate. Thanks to the thick rope that ties the basket and giant rocks, the balloon stays put in its original place.
“Wow… This is massive…” Toyu’s face is filled with amazement.
“Yeah… I never thought it would be this big.” Ryu chimes in.
“Of course it will be this big. The calculation we did was perfect.” In response to Ryu’s words, Jun boasts.
“Hahaha… Now, we can see more of Toyu Land…” Ken adds in.
“Yay! I can fly without having to flap my wings!” Hana said with a face full of smiles.
“Now, everyone, please enter the basket one by one.” Jun politely asks everyone to jump inside. Little did they know that the small steps they take by entering the hot air balloon will change their life.