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Summary Chapter 18

Mr. Stryver, before his vacation, plans to reveal to Miss Manette her good fortune that he wants to marry her. He is confident that he will be successful in attaining her hand. He has examined the strengths and the weaknesses of his case, just as he would a court case—and he is certain of the verdict.

Mr. Stryver pays a visit to Mr. Lorry at Tellson’s Bank on his way to Soho to see Miss Manette. He reveals his plans to Lorry. Mr. Lorry is pessimistic that he will be successful in his goal, though the banker admits that Mr. Stryver is certainly prosperous enough and advancing in life satisfactorily. Mr. Lorry thinks that Mr. Stryver is rather coarse and overbearing, but he believes Stryver will fail for another reason. However, he doesn’t know if his suspicions are valid.

Mr. Lorry asks Mr. Stryver to allow him to visit the Manettes to confirm his suspicions. This will save the Manettes pain in having to reject Stryver is Mr. Lorry is correct, and it will allow Mr. Stryver to avoid embarrassment. Stryver agrees.

Mr. Lorry returns later and confirms that his reservations were correct. He is surprised when Stryver acts indifferently and business-like. Stryver shrugs it off, saying he didn’t lose anything since he didn’t propose. He thanks Mr. Lorry and apologizes to putting him to such trouble. He quickly shows him out the door. When he is alone, he fights back tears.

Charles Dickens