Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers
rusted in prisons, and when they should have violently perished;
how many accounts with Tellson’s never to be balanced in this
world, must be carried over into the next; no man could have said,
that night, any more than Mr. Jarvis Lorry could, though he
thought heavily of these questions.
He sat by a newly-lighted wood fire (the blighted and unfruitful
year was prematurely cold), and on his honest and courageous face
there was a deeper shade than the pendent lamp could throw, or
any object in the room distortedly reflect-a shade of horror.
He occupied rooms in the Bank, in his fidelity to the House of
which he had grown to be a part, like strong root-ivy. It chanced
that they derived a kind of security from the patriotic occupation of
the main building, but the true-hearted old gentleman never
calculated about that. All such circumstances were indifferent to
him, so that he did his duty. On the opposite side of the courtyard,
under a colonnade, was extensive standing for carriages-where,
indeed, some carriages of Monseigneur yet stood. Against two of
the pillars were fastened two great flaring flambeaux, and in the
light of these, standing out in the open air, was a large grindstone:
a roughly mounted thing which appeared to have hurriedly been
brought there from some neighbouring smithy, or other workshop.
Rising and looking out of window at these harmless objects, Mr.
Lorry shivered, and retired to his seat by the fire. He had opened,
not only the glass window, but the lattice blind outside it, and he
had closed both again, and he shivered through his frame.
From the streets beyond the high wall and the strong gate, there
came the usual night hum of the city, with now and then an
indescribable ring in it, weird and unearthly, as if some unwonted
sounds of a terrible nature were going up to Heaven.
“Thank God said Mr. Lorry, clasping his hands, ”that no one near
and dear to me is in this dreadful town to-night. May He have
mercy on all who are in danger!” Soon afterwards, the bell at the
great gate sounded, and he thought, “They have come back!” and
sat listening. But, there was no loud irruption into the courtyard, as
he had expected, and he heard the gate clash again, and all was
The nervousness and dread that were upon him inspired that
vague uneasiness respecting the Bank, which a great change would
naturally awaken, with such feelings roused. It was well guarded,
and he got up to go among the trusty people who were watching it,
when his door suddenly opened, and two figures rushed in, at
sight of which he fell back in amazement.
Lucie and her father! Lucie with her arms stretched out to him, and
with that old look of earnestness so concentrated and intensified,