Amy, as the appointed BFF of the birthday girl, Charlotte, really has her work cut out for her. Only as Amy sets out—on the day of—to create the most memorable party atmosphere possible and to secure her reputation among their girlfriends as totally dependable and utterly capable, does she realize just how challenging a task as simple as blowing up some balloons can actually be.
As it turns out, there's not a single cylinder of helium available in the entire city. And Amy refuses to relinquish her singular goal, as party hostess, of turning her own home into a pink balloon paradise.
In her desperation and last-minute panic, Amy hardly questions the offer of a stranger to save the day by lending the specific equipment her balloon-filled fantasy requires, and so begins her own personal inflation adventures.
All her girlfriends know that Amy is susceptible to distraction. And she's never been one to heed the advice—even the adamant and obvious warning—of a perfect stranger.
As Amy, alone with a full cylinder of helium in the privacy of her home, first releases the invisible gas, finding its forceful flow controllable with her own fingertips, the seduction begins, and the inevitable influence of helium transform's Amy's life—and body—forever.
As always, I was late. Not even by just five minutes. Not just technically late. Hours upon hours late.
"I'm sorry. We're out of tanks," the twenty-something young guy behind the counter said to me in a monotone that meant "I don't give a shit."
He didn't even flinch when I gave him my whole sob story. Not even when I tried to hint that maybe (not really) my sexy best friend Charlotte would be interested in meeting him–if he saved the day by conjuring up just one helium tank from some hidden corner of his place of employment, so I could preserve my title as BFF by surprising Charlotte with a room filled with a crap load of floating pink balloons for her birthday.
"Sorry, ma'am. There aren't any. If you showed up at two like you were supposed..."
I didn't hear anything the boy said after the shock of being called ma'am. "Look, I... oh, forget it. I'm taking my business somewhere else."
I stormed out of Parties R Us, making damn sure the unhelpful guy behind the counter caught a prolonged view of my most enticing ass-jiggling walk. He'd be thinking about that for weeks—and regretting every second he didn't bother to think outside the box and locate a damn helium tank for this hot-ass older woman. I mean, he could've recalled one loaned out for the birthday party of some baby that wouldn't remember the sight of balloons swarming around its fat head any more than the huge dump he took in his diaper while his smoking grandma slobbered on his cheek and squeezed him too hard.
I fumed all the way across town to Balloons 'n' Things and then, back across town to Nifty Gifty's. It seemed Charlotte's birthday happened to be a big event for everyone in the whole friggin' city.
I was out of party stores and clean out of ideas. And I only had one hour before the first of our girlfriends would show up at my place, expecting to be wowed by the amazing, girly ambience.
It was my chance to earn a new reputation. Once and for all, I could step down as the reigning Queen of Undependability and Guaranteed Susceptibility to Distraction. I could be forever regaled as the one who pulled it all together and on time—for once. And that opportunity was about to float right out the window like the helium balloons I'd never be allowed to bring into the world.
In fact, when I found myself sitting at the counter in the Cold Stone Creamery closest to my house, gorging on a hand-mixed mess of vanilla ice cream and every kind of chopped candy bar they had available, I had no memory of the last ten minutes. I thought the opportunity to redeem myself among all my friends was long gone.
As I lifted, regretfully, one of the last remaining spoonfuls of icy, creamy, fatty goodness to my mouth, I heard the voice of a stranger in my ear—uncomfortably close to my ear.
"There's only one reason why a girl as pretty as you would be sitting all alone in an ice cream shop on such a beautiful day."
I cocked an eyebrow as I savored the spoonful and refused to look up at the creep who sat down beside me.
"You must be disappointed with yourself."
Oh, that really made my day.
"Look... whoever you are... I..." I was on the attack, but he wouldn't give me the satisfaction of changing his expression to reflect the danger he just put himself in.
"Anything I can do to help?"
Still creepy, but I'm much too old to be scared of dirty old men anymore, and my mind was a bit numbed by the cold of the ice cream. "Helium. I need helium," I said, mostly for my own amusement.
"For your transatlantic flight plans?"
"No... my best friend's birthday party." Why was I actually talking to the man?
"Ah, of course." His mumble was wrapped in a chuckle as he stroked his white, V-shaped goatee.
My ice cream just didn't taste the same anymore. Too much strangeness mixed in with the experience. I pushed the paper bowl away from me and dabbed at my mouth with my napkin, turning to face the wrinkled face before me.
He wasn't that creepy looking, just more like one of those men who truly amuses himself with his every word. The world's full of them. Totally harmless.
"Yep, the whole city's out of helium tanks to loan out, apparently. Unless you have one sitting around in the back of your car, I'm afraid you can't help me. But I appreciate the offer." I slid off my stool and picked up the neglected remains of my ice cream heaven to toss in the trash. "I've gotta—"
"It so happens that I have one—a helium cylinder. I can loan it to you. But it's not in the back of my car. You'll have to give me your address, and I can—"
"Forget it." I was the one laughing then. "I don't know whether you're telling the truth or not, but I really don't care to find out. Goodbye."
"I..." the now sad-sounding voice called out to my backside. "I'm serious. I'd love to help. I can just retrieve it and bring it back here... if you like."
My hand was already on the shop door. ....
Average Rating: 4.8/5.0 from 4 reviews
Not bad...but I would have loved to read how the rest of the girls enjoyed an experience with the helium.
I've read tons of fetish stories in an attempt to see if i can get in on this underground culture, and I think Tina knows what's up. She nailed it with this story and I'm scouring the Kindle market to find more like this. Many forget to include actual details such as what happens to the body, or how the 'victim' feels as it happens, they focus too much on describing what is happening to this (Insert human here). Not Tina, she knows to describe the characters emotions and feelings.
We've all had that desire at some point. No, I'm not talking about the one where you want to grab a balloon, breath in all of the helium and talk like Alvin and the Chipmunks. I'm talking about transformation...something to come along and completely change our world...something that allows us to transcend what we once were and become what we desire to be. The process can be exciting, soothing, terrifying, gratifying, unexpected, pleasurable, or sometimes even painful. No matter how the transformation occurs, the result is always the same: something new for us to discover. Tina's well-written work here captures transformation and all of its nuances beautifully.
The story opens by throwing us right into the middle of Amy's life, efficiently giving enough detail to empathize with her character and hope for her situation to TRANSFORM into something better. Just when life seems to be at an all time low, a mysterious stranger that has a somewhat magical quality about him, being compared to "Santa Claus", and having knowledge beyond the ordinary, happens to appear, offering exactly the one thing she needs to turn it all around: a helium tank. Excuse me, cylinder.
I would like to note Tina's clever choice of words here and throughout this story. Amy refers to it as a "tank" with connotations such as utility, brutish, loud, heavy. However, the stranger lovingly calls it a "cylinder". The word itself invoking feelings of smoothness, gracefulness, I would even say sensuality. It's easy to miss, in fact it didn't really hit me until my second read through, but I love when something like this happens. One of my signs of quality entertainment that lasts is when I can revisit it later and find new things smartly and subtly placed that I didn't pick up on originally, perhaps because I wasn't old enough, wise enough, or just didn't have the mindset at the time. It gives me a new respect for the creators that add that level of complexity and not simplifying it for a general audience because when I do finally see it and appreciate it, I feel like I've grown as person. Well done!
Once Amy is back at home with helium cylinder, that's when the magic happens. It starts out innocently enough, fumbling with the equipment, just trying things out, filling one balloon and letting it go, until something begins to awaken in Amy, a desire to know the life of a balloon. For those worried that this book would be too "out there" for a sexual experience, I am happy to let you know that the way Tina writes these events reminded me so much of foreplay. Truthfully, the whole "encounter" had a fascinating sexual imagery to it. I found Amy's interaction with the nozzle to have a VERY arousing effect. Then, once the transformation begins, Tina goes into wonderful, explicit detail of every part of Amy's body, every sensation..."Imagine every inch of your body being touched, manipulated - fondled - at the same time..". I couldn't believe it, but I was actually being turned on along with Amy during her metamorphosis. With lascivious language like that, though, can you blame me? An interesting takeaway was that I was inspired with thoughts of how sex in itself can be a transformation, but that's another discussion for another time.
Tina uses some more clever word selection to describe the newly born Amy as being both full while simultaneously empty. While the full is obviously helium, the empty is the disappearance of all responsibilities, worries, needs, even the identity of her previous life. The old Amy is no more, magically transformed into the balloon she so envied. The ending was one of my favorite types. It provides a satisfying conclusion while also inspiring the reader to come up with what happens next, and maybe even writing the sequel themselves. The only thing better than a fantasy fulfilled is a fantasy shared.
I never had a fetish for body inflation before, but with Tina's expert wordsmithing, I don't have to have it to enjoy this erotic masterpiece. I rate this as a HOT for all sexually mature readers and lovers of quality erotica. However, if you do happen to enjoy this specific flavor, I think you will find she has given you everything you desire because she isn't afraid to really dive into the deepest desires of the fantasy. You may even have naughty thoughts if she experiments with each to make sure she knows how the fetish is supposed to "feel" firsthand. Oh my! Gotta go...a, uh, PRESSING issue has just RISEN up that I need to attend to before it INFLATES beyond my control! BUY THIS NOW!
Our heroine, "Amy", thirty-ish or forty-ish, doesn't seem like a happy person in the first pages of Tina Tirrell's fascinating new story. The minutiae of life seems to have gotten Amy down, soured her personality. She's the type of person who dreads doing the tedious but necessary things like preparing for a party she's hosting -- hence the last-second scramble to secure a helium tank -- and then internally gripes at the unfairness of a world that duly rewards her lack of planning. Turned down by one party-supply store, she imagines a helium tank she *could* have had loaned out at a party for an infant with a "fat head" and "huge dump in his diaper". All this, while wistfully envisioning herself as being "forever regaled as the one who pulled it all together and on time -- for once." Meanwhile, defeated, she ends up at an ice cream parlor stuffing herself just an hour before the party she's hosting for a friend's birthday is about to begin.
Amy is, in other words, a woman due for a transformation. A translation. Heck, a downright inflation. And a strange old man who happens to have a spare cylinder of helium provides just the ticket.
Ms. Tirrell's prose grows sharper and sharper with each published story. The quality is at literary-magazine level: "The empty balloon was like a caterpillar destined to be a butterfly, flying high above the earth, escaping it, granted an incredible, rare ability, fulfilling its absolute potential." The fetish du jour is a strange one -- body inflation -- but, as I described above, the author has a lot more on her mind than fulfilling the requirements of the fetish. The story implies a sort of blend between the sensual and spiritual, as the transformation allows Amy to feel something different, new, pleasurable, while leaving behind the annoyances and petty disappointments, both with the world and with herself, far above the dirty ground.
Fetishists will be delighted with Ms. Tirrell's faithfulness to their kink ... while literary readers will experience a delight of a different sort: the continuing development of a major talent.
5 out of 5.