Book the Third - The Track of a Storm
14. XIV. The Knitting Done
"In a word," said Madame Defarge, coming out of her short abstraction,
"I cannot trust my husband in this matter. Not only do I feel, since
last night, that I dare not confide to him the details of my projects;
but also I feel that if I delay, there is danger of his giving warning,
and then they might escape."
"That must never be," croaked Jacques Three; "no one must escape.
We have not half enough as it is. We ought to have six score a day."
"In a word," Madame Defarge went on, "my husband has not my reason
for pursuing this family to annihilation, and I have not his reason
for regarding this Doctor with any sensibility. I must act for myself,
therefore. Come hither, little citizen."
The wood-sawyer, who held her in the respect, and himself in the
submission, of mortal fear, advanced with his hand to his red cap.
"Touching those signals, little citizen," said Madame Defarge,
sternly, "that she made to the prisoners; you are ready to bear
witness to them this very day?"
"Ay, ay, why not!" cried the sawyer. "Every day, in all weathers,
from two to four, always signalling, sometimes with the little one,
sometimes without. I know what I know. I have seen with my eyes."
He made all manner of gestures while he spoke, as if in incidental
imitation of some few of the great diversity of signals that he had
"Clearly plots," said Jacques Three. "Transparently!"
"There is no doubt of the Jury?" inquired Madame Defarge, letting her
eyes turn to him with a gloomy smile.
"Rely upon the patriotic Jury, dear citizeness. I answer for my
"Now, let me see," said Madame Defarge, pondering again. "Yet once more!
Can I spare this Doctor to my husband? I have no feeling either way.
Can I spare him?"