glanced back to see Sister Rosaline, red aced and out o breath, wav-ing rom the end o the line.“All here,” the nun called out happily in her singsong French.“All orty-three.”Gabriella waved back, smiling at the children. “Do you want togo a little arther? We’re almost to the park.” A chorus o
sang back to her, so they proceededdown a narrow dirt road into a grassy sanctuary enclosed by tallcypress trees. At the ar end o the eld were several seesaws, somemonkey bars, and an old swing set.Tis walk outside the orphanage had become a daily ritual aterlunch, weather permitting. Mother Griolet had hesitated at rst. Whati people began to question? Ater all, the population o the orphanagehad doubled in a ew short months. But Gabriella and Sister Rosalinehad insisted. Te new arrivals were loud, araid, and restless. ogetherthe children acted like pent-up animals, and they needed to be uncagedin a space larger than the courtyard inside St. Joseph.In truth, Gabriella worried or Mother Griolet. With David away and all the new children here, the old nun’s predictable schedule hadcome tumbling down.“It’s always this way at rst,” she had reassured Gabriella. “Duringthe Second World War we scrambled or a while, but we eventually settled into a routine.”But Gabriella was not convinced. Over teen years had passedsince that war, and Mother Griolet was no longer young. Still spry,yes, but she was suddenly looking quite old beneath her habit. Herace looked more wrinkled, and her green eyes had lost some o theirsparkle.