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A Tale of Two Cities

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The Doctor sat with his face turned away, and his eyes bent on the ground. At the last words, he stretched out his hand again, hurriedly, and cried: The doctor sat facing away from him, with his eyes on the ground. After Mr. Darnay had said these last words, Dr. Manette stretched out his hand again quickly and said:
“Not that, sir! Let that be! I adjure you, do not recall that!” “Don’t speak of that, sir! Leave that alone! I beg you, don’t bring that up!”
His cry was so like a cry of actual pain, that it rang in Charles Darnay’s ears long after he had ceased. He motioned with the hand he had extended, and it seemed to be an appeal to Darnay to pause. The latter so received it, and remained silent. It sounded so much like he was actually crying out in pain that Charles Darnay’s ears rang long after he had stopped. He gestured with the hand he had reached out toward him. He seemed to be asking Darnay to pause. Mr. Darnay stopped speaking.
“I ask your pardon,” said the Doctor, in a subdued tone, after some moments. “I do not doubt your loving Lucie; you may be satisfied of it.” “I’m sorry,” said the doctor quietly after a while. “I don’t doubt that you love Lucie. You should be happy about that.”
He turned towards him in his chair, but did not look at him, or raise his eyes. His chin dropped upon his hand, and his white hair overshadowed his face: He turned toward him in his chair but continued to look at the ground. He rested his chin on his hand, and his white hair hung down over his face.
“Have you spoken to Lucie?” “Have you spoken to Lucie about this?”
“No.” “No.”
“Nor written?” “Or written to her about it?”
“Never.” “Never.”
“It would be ungenerous to affect not to know that your self-denial is to be referred to your consideration for her father. Her father thanks you.” “It would be rude to pretend not to know that you have kept yourself away from her out of respect for me. I thank you.”
He offered his hand; but his eyes did not go with it. He extended his hand but kept looking at the ground.
“I know,” said Darnay, respectfully, “how can I fail to know, Doctor Manette, I who have seen you together from day to day, that between you and Miss Manette there is an affection so unusual, so touching, so belonging to the circumstances in which it has been nurtured, that it can have few parallels, even in the tenderness between a father and child. I know, Doctor Manette—how can I fail to know—that, mingled with the affection and duty of a daughter who has become a woman, there is, in her heart, towards you, all the love and reliance of infancy itself. I know that, as in her childhood she had no parent, so she is now devoted to you with all the constancy and fervour of her present years and character, united to the trustfulness and attachment of the early days in which you were lost to her. I know perfectly well that if you had been restored to her from the world beyond this life, you could hardly be invested, in her sight, with a more sacred character than that in which you are always with her. I know that when she is clinging to you, the hands of baby, girl, and woman, all in one, are round your neck. I know that in loving you she sees and loves her mother at her own age, sees and loves you at my age, loves her mother broken-hearted, loves you through your dreadful trial and in your blessed restoration. I have known this, night and day, since I have known you in your home.” “I know,” said Darnay, respectfully. “How could I not know that there is an unusual love between you and your daughter, Dr. Manette? I have seen the two of you together day after day. It is so touching, and I know it comes from the extreme circumstances that you have been through together. There can be few relationships between a father and a child like it. I know, Dr. Manette—how could I not know—that combined with the love of a grown woman for her father, there is, in her heart, the love of an infant for her father as well. I know that since she had no parents when she was a child, she is now devoted to you with all the love of a grown woman, combined with the trust and attachment she never had as a child. I know well that if you had come back from the dead, you could hardly seem more sacred to her than you do now. I know that when she is holding onto you, the hands of a baby, a girl, and a grown woman together are embracing you. I know that in loving you she sees and loves her mother as a young woman. She sees and loves you as a young man. She loves her brokenhearted mother and loves you through your trial and imprisonment through to when you were freed and rehabilitated. I have known this, night and day, since I started to come to visit you here at your home.”
Her father sat silent, with his face bent down. His breathing was a little quickened; but he repressed all other signs of agitation. Her father sat in silence, facing the ground. His breathing had sped up a little, but otherwise he repressed any signs of being upset.
“Dear Doctor Manette, always knowing this, always seeing her and you with this hallowed light about you, I have forborne, and forborne, as long as it was in the nature of man to do it. I have felt, and do even now feel, that to bring my love—even mine—between you, is to touch your history with something not quite so good as itself. But I love her. Heaven is my witness that I love her!” “My dear Dr. Manette, having always known this, and always seeing the two of you together, I have restrained myself as long as humanly possible. I have felt, and even feel now, that to bring my love between you is to taint your past with something not quite as good as itself. But I love her. Heaven is my witness that I love her!”

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