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now. That perils had thickened about him fast, and might thicken
faster and faster yet, he of course knew now. He could not but
admit to himself that he might not have made this journey, if he
could have foreseen the events of a few days. And yet his
misgivings were not so dark as, imagined by the light of this later
time, they would appear. Troubled as the future was, it was the
unknown future, and in its obscurity there was ignorant hope. The
horrible massacre, days and nights long, which, within a few
rounds of the clock, was to set a great mark of blood upon the
blessed garnering time of harvest, was as far out of his knowledge
as if it had been a hundred thousand years away. The “sharp
female newly-born, and called La Guillotine,” was hardly known
to him, or to the generality of people, by name. The frightful deeds
that were to be soon done, were probably unimagined at that time
in the brains of the doers. How could they have a place in the
shadowy conceptions of a gentle mind? Of unjust treatment in
detention and hardship, and in cruel separation from his wife and
child, he foreshadowed the likelihood, or the certainty; but, beyond
this, he dreaded nothing distinctly. With this on his mind, which
was enough to carry into a dreary prison courtyard, he arrived at
the prison of La Force.

A man with a bloated face opened the strong wicket, to whom
Defarge presented “The Emigrant Evremonde.” “What the Devil!
How many more of them!” exclaimed the man with the bloated

Defarge took his receipt without noticing the exclamation, and
withdrew, with his two fellow-patriots.

“What the Devil, I say again!” exclaimed the gaoler, left with his
wife. “How many more!” The gaoler’s wife, being provided with
no answer to the question, merely replied, “One must have
patience, my dear!” Three turnkeys who entered respon-sive to a
bell she rang, echoed the sentiment, and one added, “For the love
of Liberty;” which sounded in that place like an inappropriate

The prison of La Force was a gloomy prison, dark and filthy, and
with a horrible smell of foul sleep in it. Extraordinary how soon the
noisome flavour of imprisoned sleep, becomes manifest in all such
places that are ill cared for!

“In secret, too,” grumbled the gaoler, looking at the written paper.
“As if I was not already full to bursting!” He stuck the paper on a
file, in an ill-humour, and Charles Darnay awaited his further
pleasure for half an hour: sometimes, pacing to and fro in the
strong arched room: sometimes, resting on a stone seat: in either
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