Again, the dreaded Sunday comes round, and I file into the old pew first, like a guarded captive brought to a condemned service.
’I don’t know all I have done, in my fatuity,’ said Mr. Wickfield, putting out his hands, as if to deprecate my condemnation.
’Miss Dartle,’ I returned, ’you are surely not so unjust as to condemn ME!’
And he takes,’ said my mother, with the tears which were engendered in her affectionate nature, stealing down her face, ’he takes great pains with me; and I ought to be very thankful to him, and very submissive to him even in my thoughts; and when I am not, Peggotty, I worry and condemn myself, and feel doubtful of my own heart, and don’t know what to do.’
’My love,’ said Mr. Micawber, much affected, ’you will forgive, and our old and tried friend Copperfield will, I am sure, forgive, the momentary laceration of a wounded spirit, made sensitive by a recent collision with the Minion of Power — in other words, with a ribald Turncock attached to the water-works — and will pity, not condemn, its excesses.’
I saw her features and her manner slowly change; I saw her look at him with growing admiration; I saw her try, more and more faintly, but always angrily, as if she condemned a weakness in herself, to resist the captivating power that he possessed; and finally, I saw her sharp glance soften, and her smile become quite gentle, and I ceased to be afraid of her as I had really been all day, and we all sat about the fire, talking and laughing together, with as little reserve as if we hadů