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watching her. In one of those pauses she recoiled and cried out, for
she saw a figure standing in the room.

The basin fell to the ground broken, and the water flowed to the
feet of Madame Defarge. By strange stern ways, and through much
staining blood, those feet had come to meet that water.

Madame Defarge looked coldly at her, and said, “The wife of
Evremonde; where is she?”

It flashed upon Miss Pross’s mind that the doors were all standing
open, and would suggest the flight. Her first act was to shut them.
There were four in the room, and she shut them all. She then
placed herself before the door of the chamber which Lucie had

Madame Defarge’s dark eyes followed her through this rapid
movement, and rested on her when it was finished. Miss Pross had
nothing beautiful about her; years had not tamed the wildness, or
softened the grimness, of her appearance; but, she too was a
determined woman in her different way, and she measured
Madame Defarge with her eyes, every inch.

“You might, from your appearance, be the wife of Lucifer,” said
Miss Pross, in her breathing. “Nevertheless, you shall not get the
better of me. I am an Englishwoman.” Madame Defarge looked at
her scornfully, but still with something of Miss Pross’s own
perception that they two were at bay. She saw a tight, hard, wiry
woman before her, as Mr. Lorry had seen in the same figure a
woman with a strong hand, in the years gone by. She knew full
well that Miss Pross was the family’s devoted friend; Miss Pross
knew full well that Madame Defarge was the family’s malevolent

“On my way yonder,” said Madame Defarge, with a slight
movement of her hand towards the fatal spot, “where they reserve
my chair and my knitting for me, I am come to make my
compliments to her in passing. I wish to see her.”

“I know that your intentions are evil,” said Miss Pross, “and you
may depend upon it, I’ll hold my own against them.” Each spoke
in her own language; neither understood the other’s words; both
were very watchful, and intent to deduce from look and manner,
what the unintelligible words meant.

“It will do her no good to keep herself concealed from me at this
moment,” said Madame Defarge. “Good patriots will know what
that means. Let me see her. Go tell her that I wish to see her. Do
you hear?” “If those eyes of yours were bed-winches,” returned
Miss Pross, “and I was an English four-poster, they shouldn’t loose
a splinter of me. No, you wicked foreign woman; I am your
match.” Madame Defarge was not likely to follow these idiomatic
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