"Did she not, then, adopt you of her own accord?"
"No, ma'am; she was sorry to have to do it: but my uncle, as I have often
heard the servants say, got her to promise before he died that she would
always keep me."
"Well now, Jane, you know, or at least I will tell you, that when a
criminal is accused, he is always allowed to speak in his own defence.
You have been charged with falsehood; defend yourself to me as well as
you can. Say whatever your memory suggests is true; but add nothing and
I resolved, in the depth of my heart, that I would be most moderate--most
correct; and, having reflected a few minutes in order to arrange
coherently what I had to say, I told her all the story of my sad
childhood. Exhausted by emotion, my language was more subdued than it
generally was when it developed that sad theme; and mindful of Helen's
warnings against the indulgence of resentment, I infused into the
narrative far less of gall and wormwood than ordinary. Thus restrained
and simplified, it sounded more credible: I felt as I went on that Miss
Temple fully believed me.