The strange case II

It was late in the afternoon when Mr Utterson found his way to Dr Jekyll’s door, where he was at once admitted by Poole, and carried down by the kitchen offices and across a yard which had once been a garden, to the building which was indifferently known as the laboratory or the dissecting-rooms… It was the first time that the lawyer had been received in that part of his friend’s quarters; and he eyed the dingy windowless structure with curiosity, and gazed around with a distasteful sense of strangeness as he crossed the theatre, once crowded with eager students and now lying gaunt and silent, the tables laden with chemical apparatus, the floor strewn with crates and littered with packing straw, and the light falling dimly from the foggy cupola. At the further end, a flight of stairs mounted to a door covered with red baize; and through this Mr Utterson was at last received into the doctor’s cabinet. It was a large room, fitted round with glass presses, furnished, among other things, with a cheval-glass and a business table, and looking out upon the court by three dusty windows barred with iron. The fire burned in the grate; a lamp was set lighted on the chimney-shelf, for even in the houses the fog began to lie thickly.

– Robert Louis Stevenson

The strange case

Two doors from one corner, on the left hand going east, the line was broken by the entry of a court; and just at that point, a certain sinister block of a building thrust forward its gable on the street. It was two storeys high; showed no window, nothing but a door on the lower storey and a blind forehead of discoloured wall on the upper; and bore in every feature the marks of a prolonged and sordid negligence. The door, which was equipped with neither bell nor knocker, was blistered and distained.

“Did you ever remark that door?” he asked; and when his companion had replied in the affirmative, “It is connected in my mind,” added he “with a very odd story.”

“Indeed!” said Mr Utterson, with a slight change of voice, “and what was that?”

– Robert Louis Stevenson, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde