A flighty little period mystery-adventure which includes a dizzy ascent in a balloon, gypsy soothsaying and cheerful implausibilities. Hester Malpass' fine and handsome captain is Edward Deveraux, balloonist and inventor whom Hester, a Bristol restaurant waitress in 1885, assists in a fairgrounds spectacular. But winds go awry while the pair waft aloft and Hester lands in the yard of Deveraux's hated competitor, dour Dr. Craggan, who is also racing against time to produce a workable petroleum engine. Hester is a virtual prisoner of Craggan but she finally escapes to Deveraux--only to uncover some unsuspected relations, the secret of the treasure she had possessed all the while, and the truth about her captain's and her own affections. A bucketing escape tale that breezes along.