A Tale of Two Cities-The last goodbyes
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The last goodbyes
At that same hour in the early afternoon a coach going out of Paris drives up to the gates of the city.
'Who goes there? Show us your papers!'The guard looks at the papers. 'Alexandre Manette, Doctor. Which is he?
This is Dr Manette;this helpless1 old man, whispering crazily to himself.
'The last few days of the Revolution have been too much for him, 'said the guard with a cruel laugh. 'Lucie his daughter. The wife of Evrémonde. Which is she?
This is she. With her child, little Lucie, beside her.
'Hah, your husband has another meeting today. Sydney Carton. Lawyer, English. Which is he?
He is here, in the corner. He is not well.
'And Jarvis Lorry. Banker, English. Which is he?
'I am he, and the last, 'says Jarvis Lorry.
'Here are your papers, Jarvis Lorry. You may go.
There are wildly beating hearts in the coach, and trembling hands;there is the heavy breathing of the unconscious traveller. But onwards the coach goes;the horses are fast, and there are no shouts behind them on the road.
Also that afternoon Madame Defarge was talking with her friends.
'My husband is a good citizen, but he is not strong enough. He feels sorry for the Doctor. I say that all the Evrémonde people must go to the Guillotine. The wife and the child must follow the husband.
'They're both fine heads for the Guillotine, 'said Jacques Three. 'Their heads will be a pretty sight when they are shown to the people. Yes, they too, must die.
'But I'm afraid that my husband may warn them and let them escape, 'Madame Defarge went on, 'and I must do something myself. After the death of Evrémonde at three this afternoon we'll go to the Tribunal and accuse them.
The others agreed willingly. 'No one must escape. More heads must fall.
'Lucie Manette will be at home now, waiting for the moment of her husband's death, 'said Madame Defarge. ' I will go to her. She will say things against the Revolution, and condemn2 herself. Here, take my knitting3 and keep my usual seat near the Guillotine.
'Don't be late, 'said her friend.
'To see the death of Evrémonde, I shall not be late, 'replid the cruel voice of Madame Defarge.
There were many women in Paris at that time who hated the nobles and wanted to see them die. But of all these women, Madame Defarge was the one most feared. All her life she had been filled with hate. It was nothing to her that an innocent4 man was going to die because of his father's and his uncle's crimes. She wanted more. Hidden in her clothes were a gun and a sharp knife, and with her usual confident step, she began to walk to Dr Manette's house.
The house was not yet empty. Miss Pross and Jerry Cruncher were there, preparing to follow Mr Lorry's coach. Mr Lorry had decided5 that two coaches were better than one;with fewer passengers, each coach would travel faster. But Miss Pross was still worried. A second coach leaving from the house might suggest an escape.
'Mr Cruncher, 'she said, 'you must go and stop our coach coming here. Drive to the church instead, and I'll meet you there at three o'clock.
Jerry hurried away. It was twenty past two, and at once Miss Pross began to get herself ready to leave. She was washing her face when she suddenly looked up and saw a figure standing6 in the room.
Madame Defarge looked at her coldly. 'The wife of Evrémonde;where is she?
Miss Pross quickly stood in front of the door to Lucie's room. 'You're a cruel, dangerous woman, but you won't frighten me, 'she said, breathing hard.
Each woman spoke7 in her own language, and neither understood the other's words. But Madame Defarge knew that Miss Pross was a true friend of the Doctor's family, and Miss Pross knew that Madame Defarge was the family's enemy.
'I wish to see the wife of Evrémonde. Go and tell her. Do you hear me? 'said Madame Defarge. She stared angrily at Miss Pross, but Miss Pross stared back just as angrily.
'I am desperate, 'said Miss Pross. 'I know that the longer I can keep you here, the greater hope there is for my darling girl. If you fight me, I'll fight back!
Madame Defarge stepped forward and called loudly, 'Citizen Doctor!Wife of Evrémonde!Answer me!
There was no answer and Madame Defarge quickly opened three of the doors and saw that the rooms were empty. One door was still closed.
'If they are not in that room, they are gone. But they can be followed and brought back. 'She went towards the door, but Miss Pross jumped forward and held her round the waist. Madame Defarge was used to the fighting in the streets and was strong, but love is stronger than hate and Miss Pross did not let go. Madame Defarge tried to pull out her knife.
'No, 'said Miss Pross, 'it's under my arm. You shall not have it.
Madame Defarge put her hand to the front of her dress and began to pull out the gun. Miss Pross looked down, saw what it was, and hit out at it wildly. There was a loud bang8, and a cloud of smoke, and Miss Pross stood alone, trembling with terror9.
All this in a second. As the smoke cleared, Miss Pross saw the lifeless body of Madame Defarge on the ground. In horror10, she opened her mouth to call for help, but then she thought of the dangers this would bring for her dear Lucie. With shaking hands, she got her hat and coat, locked the door of the room, and went downstairs. As she crossed the bridge on the way to the church, she dropped the key of the locked room in the river and hurried on to meet Jerry Cruncher.
* * *
As the death-carts carry the condemned11 prisoners through the streets of Paris, crowds watch to see the faces of those who are to die. In the chairs around the Guillotine, the friends of Madame Defarge are waiting for her. 'Teresa, Teresa Defarge!Who has seen her? She's never missed before!
But the death-carts have arrived, and the Guillotine has already begun its work. Crash!—A head is held up, and the women who sit knitting count One.
The supposed Evrémode helps the young girl down from the cart. He carefully places her with her back to the Guillotine, and she looks up gratefully into his face.
Because of you, dear stranger, I am calm. I think you were sent to me by God, 'she whispers.
'Or perhaps He sent you to me, 'says Sydney Carton. 'Keep your eyes on me, dear child, and do not think of anything else.
'I do not mind while I hold your hand. I shall not mind when I let it go, if they are quick.
'They are quick. Fear not!
She kisses his lips;he kisses hers. Now the Guillotine is waiting. The young girl goes next, before him. The women count Twenty-Two, and Carton walks forward.
They said of him that it was the most peaceful face ever seen there What passed through Sydney Carton's mind as he walked those last steps to his death? Perhaps he saw into the future…
'I see Barsad, Defarge, the judges, all dying12 under this terrible machine. I see a beautiful city being built in this terrible place. I see that new people will live here, in real freedom. I see the lives for whom I give my life, happy and peaceful in that England which I shall never see again. I see Lucie when she is old, crying for me on this day every year, and I know that she and her husband remember me until their deaths. I see their son, who has my name, now a man. I see him become a famous lawyer and make my name famous by his work. I hear him tell his son my story.
'It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done;it is a far, far better rest that I go to, than I have ever known. '


1 helpless FdAxb     
  • The other team was helpless and we had a real field day.对方队很弱,我们轻易取胜。
  • They felt helpless to do anything about it.他们对这事感到无能为力。
2 condemn zpxzp     
  • Some praise him,whereas others condemn him.有些人赞扬他,而有些人谴责他。
  • We mustn't condemn him on mere suppositions.我们不可全凭臆测来指责他。
3 knitting GpQzeQ     
n.编结物;接合,联合;[外科]骨愈合v.(使)愈合( knit的现在分词);编结,编织;(使)紧密地结合;织平针
  • Weaving and knitting are traditional cottage industries. 编织和针织是传统的家庭手工业。
  • manipulative skills such as typing and knitting 诸如打字、编织这样的技能
4 innocent J68xs     
  • I'm not quite so innocent as to believe that.我还不至于简单到相信那种事的地步。
  • I was very young,and very innocent.我那时非常年轻,幼稚无知。
5 decided lvqzZd     
  • This gave them a decided advantage over their opponents.这使他们比对手具有明显的优势。
  • There is a decided difference between British and Chinese way of greeting.英国人和中国人打招呼的方式有很明显的区别。
6 standing 2hCzgo     
  • After the earthquake only a few houses were left standing.地震过后只有几幢房屋还立着。
  • They're standing out against any change in the law.他们坚决反对对法律做任何修改。
7 spoke XryyC     
n.(车轮的)辐条;轮辐;破坏某人的计划;阻挠某人的行动 v.讲,谈(speak的过去式);说;演说;从某种观点来说
  • They sourced the spoke nuts from our company.他们的轮辐螺帽是从我们公司获得的。
  • The spokes of a wheel are the bars that connect the outer ring to the centre.辐条是轮子上连接外圈与中心的条棒。
8 bang dPmyH     
  • Pack it up, you kids;or I'll bang your heads together!住手,你们这些小孩,再弄就揍你们!
  • She fell and got a nasty bang on the knee.她摔倒了,膝盖猛撞在地上。
9 terror dI9z3     
  • We were in mortal terror of being found out. 我们非常害怕被发现。
  • That guy is a proper terror. 那家伙真是讨厌。
10 horror DdUzN     
  • The public has been awakened to the full horror of the situation.公众完全意识到了这一状况的可怕程度。
  • The thought of working nights fills me with abject horror.一想到要夜间工作我就觉得惨兮兮的。
11 condemned condemned     
adj. 被责难的, 被宣告有罪的 动词condemn的过去式和过去分词
  • He condemned the hypocrisy of those politicians who do one thing and say another. 他谴责了那些说一套做一套的政客的虚伪。
  • The policy has been condemned as a regressive step. 这项政策被认为是一种倒退而受到谴责。
12 dying 1rGx0     
  • He was put in charge of the group by the dying leader.他被临终的领导人任命为集团负责人。
  • She was shown into a small room,where there was a dying man.她被领进了一间小屋子,那里有一个垂死的人。