When night fell, you couldn’t see the wires.
From her perch above the party, Sara tapped her foot to the swing and snap of Glenn Miller from the orchestra below. A hundred umbrellas floated over the assembled guests, suspended by now invisible tethers.
There were electric fairy lights and impossibly real-looking potted tropical trees, the gentle light of a thousand hurricane glasses amplifying the flickering candles. No expense was spared for this turn of the year celebration. The hosts had even gone so far as to install a weather pattern with a chance of rain.
The better to delight the party-goers with the quaint notion of umbrellas.
Riordan was down there, chest full of air that like magic transformed into bright spots of sound. His brass trumpet was a relic from Before, not an alloy replica like the rest of them. He’d showed her how to blow into the mouthpiece once, warning her it was harder than it looked.
“I can sneak you onto the roof,” he’d said. “So you can hear the music.”
Up above the dancing, above the umbrella tops glowing like paper lanterns in a nostalgia reel, Sara saw the artificial storm roll in. Showy, she thought, as the high thunderheads rolled overhead, but when the rain broke open over the party, a collective oh! of wonder rose from the crowd.
“It’s going to rain, Sara,” Riordan had said. “Like they say it used to.”
The band kept playing, a drowsy song full of those rich, almost human brass notes, while the gentlemen in vintage tuxedos and the women in frothy, old-fashioned gowns twirled under a ceiling of color.
“Happy 2233,” Sara whispered to the manufactured clouds, smiling up into the rain, a sea of umbrellas below.
This week, Write on Edge challenged us with this photograph and 500 words.