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“Carton,” said his friend, squaring himself at him with a bullying
air, as if the fire-grate had been the furnace in which sustained
endeavour was forged, and the one delicate thing to be done for
the old Sydney Carton of old Shrewsbury School was to shoulder
him into it, “your way is, and always was, a lame way.

You summon no energy and purpose. Look at me.” “Oh,
botheration!” returned Sydney, with a lighter and more good-
humoured laugh, “don’t you be moral!” “How have I done what I
have done?” said Stryver; “how do I do what I do?” “Partly
through paying me to help you, I suppose. But it’s not worth your
while to apostrophise me, or the air, about it; what you want to do,
you do. You were always in the front rank, and I was always
behind.” “I had to get into the front rank; I was not born there, was
I?” “I was not present at the ceremony; but my opinion is you
were,” said Carton.

At this, he laughed again, and they both laughed.
“Before Shrewsbury, and at Shrewsbury, and ever since
Shrewsbury,” pursued Carton, “you have fallen into your rank,
and I have fallen into mine. Even when we were fellow-students in
the Student-Quarter of Paris, picking up French, and French law,
and other French crumbs that we didn’t get much good of, you
were always somewhere, and I was always-nowhere.” “And
whose fault was that?” “Upon my soul, I am not sure that it was
not yours. You were always driving and riving and shouldering
and passing, to that restless degree that I had no chance for my life
but in rust and repose. It’s a gloomy thing, however, to talk about
one’s own past, with the day breaking. Turn me in some other
direction before I go.” “Well then! Pledge me to the pretty
witness,” said Stryver, holding up his glass. “Are you turned in a
pleasant direction?” Apparently not, for he became gloomy again.
“Pretty witness,” he muttered, looking down into his glass. “I have
had enough of witnesses to-day and to-night; who’s your pretty
witness?” “The picturesque doctor’s daughter, Miss Manette.” “She
pretty?” “Is she not?” “No.” “Why, man alive, she was the
admiration of the whole Court!” “Rot the admiration of the whole
Court! Who made the Old Bailey a judge of beauty? She was a
golden-haired doll!” “Do you know, Sydney,” said Mr. Stryver,
looking at him with sharp eyes, and slowly drawing a hand across
his florid face: “do you know, I rather thought, at the time, that you
sympathised with the golden-haired doll, and were quick to see
what happened to the golden-haired doll?” “Quick to see what
happened! If a girl, doll or no doll, swoons within a yard or two of
a man’s nose, he can see it without a perspective-glass. I pledge
you, but I deny the beauty. And now I’ll have no more drink; I’ll
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