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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library - A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens


86

would have had more if it were possible. Mr. Lorry was a pleasant
sight too, beaming at all this in his little wig, and thanking his
bachelor stars for having lighted him in his declining years to a
Home. But, no Hundreds of people came to see the sights, and Mr.
Lorry looked in vain for the fulfilment of Miss Prossís prediction.
Dinner-time, and still no Hundreds of people. In the arrangements
of the little household, Miss Pross took charge of the lower regions,
and always acquitted herself marvellously. Her dinners, of a very
modest quality, were so well cooked and so well served, and so
neat in their contrivances, half English and half French, that
nothing could be better. Miss Prossís friendship being of the
thoroughly practical kind, she had ravaged Soho and the adjacent
provinces, in search of impoverished French, who, tempted by
shillings and half-crowns, would impart culinary mysteries to her.
From these decayed sons and daughters of Gaul, she had acquired
such wonderful arts, that the woman and girl who formed the staff
of domestics regarded her as quite a Sorceress, or Cinderellaís
Godmother: who would send out for a fowl, a rabbit, a vegetable
or two from the garden, and change them into anything she
pleased.

On Sundays, Miss Pross dined at the Doctorís table, but on other
days persisted in taking her meals at unknown periods, either in
the lower regions, or in her own room on the second floor-a blue
chamber, to which no one but her Ladybird ever gained
admittance. On this occasion, Miss Pross, responding to Ladybirdís
pleasant face and pleasant efforts to please her, unbent
exceedingly; so the dinner was very pleasant, too.

It was an oppressive day, and, after dinner, Lucie proposed that
the wine should be carried out under the plane-tree, and they
should sit there in the air. As everything turned upon her, and
revolved about her, they went out under the plane-tree, and she
carried the wine down for the special benefit of Mr. Lorry.

She had installed herself, some time before, as Mr. Lorryís cup-
bearer; and while they sat under the plane-tree, talking, she kept
his glass replenished. Mysterious backs and ends of houses peeped
at them as they talked, and the plane-tree whispered to them in its
own way above their heads.

Still, the Hundreds of people did not present themselves. Mr.
Darnay presented himself while they were sitting under the plane-
tree, but he was only One.

Doctor Manette received him kindly, and so did Lucie. But, Miss
Pross suddenly became afflicted with a twitching in the head and
body, and retired into the house. She was not unfrequently the
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