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A Tale of Two Cities

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“Have you recognised him, monsieur?” asked Defarge in a whisper. “Did you recognize him, monsieur?” whispered Defarge.
“Yes; for a moment. At first I thought it quite hopeless, but I have unquestionably seen, for a single moment, the face that I once knew so well. Hush! Let us draw further back. Hush!” “Yes. For just a second. At first I thought it was hopeless. But I have definitely seen, for one moment, the face that I once knew very well. Quiet! Let’s move back a little. Quiet!”
She had moved from the wall of the garret, very near to the bench on which he sat. There was something awful in his unconsciousness of the figure that could have put out its hand and touched him as he stooped over his labour. Miss Manette had moved away from the attic wall and was very close to the bench he sat on. There was something terrible about the fact that he was unaware of someone so close she could have reached out and touched him.
Not a word was spoken, not a sound was made. She stood, like a spirit, beside him, and he bent over his work. No one said a word. No one made a sound. She stood next to him like a ghost as he bent over his work.
It happened, at length, that he had occasion to change the instrument in his hand, for his shoemaker’s knife. It lay on that side of him which was not the side on which she stood. He had taken it up, and was stooping to work again, when his eyes caught the skirt of her dress. He raised them, and saw her face. The two spectators started forward, but she stayed them with a motion of her hand. She had no fear of his striking at her with the knife, though they had. After a while he put down the tool in his hand to pick up his shoemaker’s knife. It was on the side of the bench opposite where she stood. He had picked it up and was leaning over to start working again when he noticed the bottom of her dress. He looked up and saw her face. Mr. Lorry and Defarge started to move forward to protect her, but she stopped them with a motion of her hand. She didn’t fear him stabbing her with his knife, though the two men did.
He stared at her with a fearful look, and after a while his lips began to form some words, though no sound proceeded from them. By degrees, in the pauses of his quick and laboured breathing, he was heard to say: He stared at her with a frightened look. After a while he started to form words with his lips, although he wasn’t making any sound. Little by little, in between his quick, heavy breaths, he said:
“What is this?” “What is this?”
With the tears streaming down her face, she put her two hands to her lips, and kissed them to him; then clasped them on her breast, as if she laid his ruined head there. With tears running down her face, she blew him a kiss with both hands. Then she placed her hands on her heart as if she were holding his head to it.
“You are not the gaoler’s daughter?” “You aren’t the jailer’s daughter?”
She sighed “No.” “No,” she sighed.
“Who are you?” “Who are you?”
Not yet trusting the tones of her voice, she sat down on the bench beside him. He recoiled, but she laid her hand upon his arm. A strange thrill struck him when she did so, and visibly passed over his frame; he laid the knife down’ softly, as he sat staring at her. Still afraid to speak, she sat down next to him on the bench. He pulled away, but she placed her hand on his arm. As she did, a strange excitement struck him, and passed through him visibly. He gently put down the knife and sat there staring at her.
Her golden hair, which she wore in long curls, had been hurriedly pushed aside, and fell down over her neck. Advancing his hand by little and little, he took it up and looked at it. In the midst of the action he went astray, and, with another deep sigh, fell to work at his shoemaking. Her long, curly blond hair had been brushed aside and fell down over her neck. Moving his hand toward her little by little, he picked up her hair and looked at it. While doing this, his mind wandered again, and with another deep sigh, he went back to his shoemaking.
But not for long. Releasing his arm, she laid her hand upon his shoulder. After looking doubtfully at it, two or three times, as if to be sure that it was really there, he laid down his work, put his hand to his neck, and took off a blackened string with a scrap of folded rag attached to it. He opened this, carefully, on his knee, and it contained a very little quantity of hair: not more than one or two long golden hairs, which he had, in some old day, wound off upon his finger. This didn’t last long, though. Letting go of his arm, she placed her hand on his shoulder. He looked at it suspiciously two or three times, as if to make sure it was really there. Then he laid down his work, reached his hand up to his neck, and removed a black string with a folded scrap of rag tied to it. Carefully he unfolded it on his knee. Inside were one or two long golden hairs, which he had wrapped around his finger long ago.
He took her hair into his hand again, and looked closely at it. “It is the same. How can it be! When was it! How was it!” He took her hair in his hand again and looked closely at it. “It’s the same. How can that be! When! How!”

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