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A Tale of Two Cities

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When it fell dark again, Mr. Lorry asked him as before: When it was night again, Mr. Lorry asked him again as he had done before:
“Dear Doctor, will you go out?” “Dear Doctor, will you go out?”
As before, he repeated, “Out?” Like before, the doctor repeated, “Out?”
“Yes; for a walk with me. Why not?” “Yes, for a walk with me. Why not?”
This time, Mr. Lorry feigned to go out when he could extract no answer from him, and, after remaining absent for an hour, returned. In the meanwhile, the Doctor had removed to the seat in the window, and had sat there looking down at the plane-tree; but, on Mr. Lorry’s return, he slipped away to his bench. This time, Mr. Lorry pretended to go out when he couldn’t get an answer from him. He stayed away for an hour and then came back. In the meantime, the doctor had moved to the window seat and had sat there looking down at the plane tree. When Mr. Lorry came back, though, the doctor moved back to his bench.
The time went very slowly on, and Mr. Lorry’s hope darkened, and his heart grew heavier again, and grew yet heavier and heavier every day. The third day came and went, the fourth, the fifth. Five days, six days, seven days, eight days, nine days. The time went by slowly, and Mr. Lorry started to worry again. He worried more and more day after day. The third day came and went, then the fourth and fifth. Five, six, seven, eight, and nine days went by.
With a hope ever darkening, and with a heart always growing heavier and heavier, Mr. Lorry passed through this anxious time. The secret was well kept, and Lucie was unconscious and happy; but he could not fail to observe that the shoemaker, whose hand had been a little out at first, was growing dreadfully skilful, and that he had never been so intent on his work, and that his hands had never been so nimble and expert, as in the dusk of the ninth evening. Mr. Lorry grew more and more anxious as the time passed. They kept the secret well. Lucie knew nothing about it and was happy. But Mr. Lorry could tell that the doctor, who had been a little out of practice at first, was getting better and better at making shoes and that he had never been so focused on his work. His hands had never been so quick and skilled as they were at dusk on the ninth night.

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