Balloon Man

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Chapter 7

Understanding everything that transpired, Giselle knew Foret ruined her, but said nothing to Ada for fear of being beaten. When Ada would leave the house, she locked Giselle in her bedroom until she returned. Foret ran his business in town during the daytime and waited until the darkness fell to creep into Giselle’s room when the opportunity presented itself. All Giselle knew anymore was Foret’s repulsive touch and Ada’s mean streak.

“What about me? Nobody cares about me. I knew love once. Will I know love ever again?” Giselle whispered.

The thoughts came with tears, but she remained strong, using her survival instincts to persevere through each day. The nightmare went on for a two years as Giselle grew to be thirteen. Not long before her fourteenth birthday, Giselle discovered she was pregnant.

She approached Foret about her condition and promised not to tell Ada as long as Foret took care of Giselle and the child. Foret surprised Giselle by denying the child was his, accusing her of sleeping with other men from town.

Giselle flew into a rage. “You liar! How dare you deny your only child you may ever have and try to tell me it is someone else’s after all these years you’ve forced me! You’re a filthy pig and you disgust me!”

Foret blinked his eyes nervously and tried to quiet her so Ada would not hear. “Sshh, alright, alright, I’ll see what I can do to help you, but you can’t tell Ada. She’ll go crazy and I don’t know what she’d do.”

The pregnancy was difficult on Giselle and she remained bedridden most of the time. Ada was furious with her for both getting pregnant and being unable to do any work around the house.

The beatings Ada inflicted on Giselle increased in duration and intensity.

Giselle withstood the pain, pretending it was not her body, and managed to avoid fighting back and making it worse. She did not want to jeopardize her baby.

Some days Ada would swing open the door to Giselle’s tiny bedroom and curse at Giselle. “You and your darn pregnancy! You couldn’t stay out of trouble could you? Now look at you! All big and swollen, full of baby; of no use to me! You disgust me, you pig whore!” Then she’d slam the door shut and lock it.

Giselle had to scream for help just to get to the bathroom which provoked Ada. She’d hit Giselle and call her names until Giselle finished and made it back into her bedroom. The abuse continued up until the day the baby came and Ada called a midwife from town to come help.

After intense labor, a baby girl was born. On this day, Giselle knew that love had never left her heart, for she felt the truest form of love when looking at her child. The moment she first held the tiny baby, Giselle she didn’t need to feel love from anyone else again.

“Oh good, more people to clean up after,” Ada said, her lips curved into a vile sneer. “Giselle, you better get outta that bed and help around this house! You don’t have an excuse anymore, so better get busy cleaning.”

Giselle tried to do what she could to clean and perform chores, but the strain on her body was too much. She went back to bed after an hour. The bedroom door opened Foret snuck inside.

“Glad to see you up and around a bit,” Foret whispered while stroking her thigh.

Giselle screamed; “Get the hell away from you filthy, disgusting man!”

Giselle did not care if Ada heard the commotion. She just wanted to be left alone with her child. Foret withdrew his hand from her thigh and left the room.

Ada saw her husband come out of the room. “What were you doing in there?”

“Nothing, Ada. I was just checking on the girl”

“Checking on the girl, huh? That’s my job so you stay out of that bedroom, you hear me Foret? Stay away from her! She is nothing but trouble!”

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