Paul, a 12-year old boy lives alone with his mother, a cleaning lady in a private clinic lost in the woods. In this clinic, Dr Loisel attends to rich people suffering from serious mental disorders. When not helping his mother, Paul runs in the woods to watch birds - his great passion. On day, Gloria, a fifteen-year old or so schizophrenic teenager arrives. Paul falls immediately in love. The two children develop a deep friendship. Convinced that Gloria is in danger, and in spite of warnings from the adults, Paul helps her escape. As they flee, Gloria pushes the director down the stairs and kills her accidentally. Paul wants to take Gloria to Brittany to her grandfather, because she told him that she has never felt happier than when she was there. A long drift ensues that brings the children to the heart of folly....