Balloon Man

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Chapter 2

St. Mercy Church, Paris 1986

“I told you we cannot leave her with the French church. She is an American citizen, and we must return her,” argued a man’s voice.

More softly, a nun’s voice responded, “Yes, but to whom? We don’t have a birth record, and the adoption is not even recorded. She speaks the language fluently. She would fit in so beautifully if she was raised here.”

“No, we have too many of our own. We will send her back to the USA. Mr. La Torre’s employer, Paul DeValle, volunteered to pay for the girl’s formal education as long as she resides in his home with him in New Orleans, Louisiana,” the man added. “The decision has been made. She will be on the next flight to the USA. In fact, I will accompany her since I have business to attend to. I will rearrange my appointments to fit a new schedule.”

Three nuns huddled together mumbling a prayer in French. One of the nuns took Giselle by the hand. She whispered softly to Giselle in French. “My dear, we would love for you to stay with us and be part of our convent, but Mr. John is going to take you back to the USA, and you will live very finely with Paul DeValle. He will take very good care of you.” The nun bent and kissed Giselle lightly on the cheek. “Au revoir Giselle. We will miss you.”

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