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A TALE OF TWO CITIES.

BY CHARLES DICKENS.

BOOK THE SECOND. THE GOLDEN THREAD.
CHAPTER XXIV. DRAWN TO THE LOADSTONE ROCK.

IN such risings of fire and risings of seathe
firm earth shaken by the rushes of an angry
ocean which had now no ebb but was always on
the flow, higher and higher, to the terror and
wonder of the beholders on the shorethree
years of tempest were consumed. Three more
birthdays of little Lucie had been woven by the
golden thread into the peaceful tissue of the
life of her home.

Many a night and many a day had its inmates
listened to the echoes in the corner, with hearts
that failed them when they heard the thronging
feet. For, the footsteps had become to their
minds as the footsteps of a people, tumultuous
under a red flag and with their country declared
in danger, changed into wild beasts, by terrible
enchantment long persisted in.

Monseigneur, as a class, had dissociated
himself from the phenomenon of his not being
appreciated: of his being so little wanted in France,
as to incur considerable danger of receiving his
dismissal from it, and this life together. Like the
fabled rustic who raised the Devil with infinite
pains, and was so terrified at the sight of him that
he could ask the Enemy no question, but
immediately fled; so, Monseigneur, after boldly
reading the Lord's Prayer backwards for a great
number of years, and performing many other
potent spells for compelling the Evil One, no
sooner beheld him in his terrors than he took to
his noble heels.

The shining Bull's Eye of the Court was gone,
or it would have been the mark for a hurricane
of national bullets. It had never been a
good eye to see withhad long had the mote in
it of Lucifer's pride, Sardanapalus's luxury,
and a mole's blindnessbut it had dropped out
and was gone. The Court, from that exclusive
inner circle to its outermost rotten ring of
intrigue, corruption, and dissimulation, was all
gone together. Royalty was gone; had been
besieged in its Palace and "suspended," when
the last tidings came over.

The August of the year one thousand
seven hundred and ninety-two was come, and
Monseigneur was by this time scattered far and
wide.

As was natural, the head-quarters and great
gathering-place of Monseigneur, in London, was
Tellson's Bank. Spirits are supposed to haunt
the places where their bodies most resorted, and
Monseigneur without a guinea haunted the spot
where his guineas used to be. Moreover, it
was the spot to which such French intelligence
as was most to be relied upon, came quickest.
Again: Tellson's was a munificent house, and
extended great liberality to old customers who
had fallen from their high estate. Again:
those nobles who had seen the coming storm in
time, and, anticipating plunder or confiscation,
had made provident remittances to Tellson's,
were always to be heard of there by their needy
brethren. To which it must be added that every
new comer from France reported himself and his
tidings at Tellson's, almost as a matter of course.
For such variety of reasons, Tellson's was at that
time, as to French intelligence, a kind of High
Exchange; and this was so well known to the
public, and the inquiries made there were in
consequence so numerous, that Tellson's
sometimes wrote the latest news out in a line or so
and posted it in the Bank windows, for all who
ran through Temple Bar to read.

On a steaming, misty afternoon, Mr. Lorry sat
at his desk, and Charles Darnay stood leaning on
it, talking with him in a low voice. The
penitential den once set apart for interviews with
the House, was now the news-Exchange, and
was filled to overflowing. It was within half an
hour or so of the time of closing.

"But, although you are the youngest man
that ever lived," said Charles Darnay, rather
hesitating, "I must still suggest to you——"

"I understand. That I am too old?" said
Mr. Lorry.

"Unsettled weather, a long journey, uncertain
means of travelling, a disorganised country, a
city that may not even be safe for you."

"My dear Charles," said Mr. Lorry, with
cheerful confidence, "you touch some of the
reasons for my going: not for my staying away.
It is safe enough for me; nobody will care to
interfere with an old fellow of hard upon
fourscore when there are so many people there
much better worth interfering with. As to its
being a disorganised city, if it were not a
disorganised city there would be no occasion to

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