His touch still lingered on her father's hand. Answering the touch for a moment, but not coldly, her father rested his hands upon the arms of his chair, and looked up for the first time since the beginning of the conference. A struggle was evidently in his face; a struggle with that occasional look which had a tendency in it to dark doubt and dread.
`You speak so feelingly and so manfully, Charles Darnay, that I thank you with all my heart, and will open all my heart--or nearly so. Have you any reason to believe that Lucie loves you?'
`Is it the immediate object of this confidence, that you may at once ascertain that, with my knowledge?'
`Not even so. I might not have the hopefulness to do it for weeks; I might (mistaken or not mistaken) have that hopefulness to-morrow.
`Do you seek any guidance from me?'
`I ask none, sir. But I have thought it possible that you might have it in your power, if you should deem it right, to give me some.'
`Do you seek any promise from me?'
`I well understand that, without you, I could have no hope. I well understand that, even if Miss Manette held me at this moment in her innocent heart--do not think I have the presumption to assume so much--I could retain no place in it against her love for her father.'