Tess of the d'Urbervilles Chapter 18
Angel's parents expected him to be a minister like his father and brothers, but much to his parents' dismay, he didn't agree with all of the harsh doctrines of the church as his father and brothers did, so he could not be a clergyman. His father did not send him to college since he was not going to do God's work. Angel tried to learn a profession in London, but he found after a short time there and a brief encounter with an older woman that city life was not for him. There is little left for him but farm life, which is fine with Angel because he will be free to do things his way and to think as he chooses.
At Talbothays, Angel sleeps in the attic above the dairymaids and although he takes meals with the other dairy workers, the dairyman's wife seats him at a separate and slightly removed table because he is of a higher class than the dairy workers.
Angel finally notices Tess one morning as she speaks of a fantasy she has of leaving her body and looking down at the world as she lies in the grass at twilight. His attention embarrasses her, so she looks down as he studies her from across the room. He thinks there is something familiar about her, but he can't place her and doesn't really try to. He's just intrigued by a dairymaid who thinks such interesting things.