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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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The last night

It was now March, and Mr Utterson was sitting by the fire after dinner, when he was surprised to receive a visit from Doctor Jekyll’s servant, Poole. The old man looked pale and frightened.

‘Mr Utterson,’ he said, ‘something is wrong.’

‘Sit down by the fire and tell me all about it.’

‘The doctor’s locked himself up in his study, sir.’ ‘That’s quite usual, surely,’ said the lawyer. ‘You know your master’s habits as well as I do. He often shuts himself away from the world.’

‘Yes, but this time it’s different. It frightens me, sir - I’ve been frightened for more than a week now, and I just can’t go on any longer.’ ! He stopped and stared down at the floor.

‘Try and tell me, Poole,’ said Mr Utterson gently.

‘Something terrible is happening to my master. I can’t explain. But.. . please, sir, can you come with me and see for yourself?’ At once Mr Utterson fetched his coat and hat.

‘Thank you, sir,’ whispered Poole gratefully.

Together they made their way to Doctor Jekyll’s house. It was a wild, stormy night. To Mr Utterson the streets seemed strangely empty and lonely. The square, when they reached it, was full of wind and flying dust. The thin trees were blowing wildly, and untidy grey clouds were sailing past a pale, sickly moon.

‘Well, sir,’ said Poole, ‘here we are, and I hope that nothing is wrong.’ He knocked softly at the front door. The door was opened just a little and a voice from inside asked, ‘Is that you, Poole?’ ‘Yes — open the door.’

The hall, when they entered, was brightly lit. A good fire was burning. The room was full of people — every servant in the house was there. They looked like a crowd of frightened children.

‘What’s all this?’ said the lawyer. ‘What are you all doing here? Your master would not be pleased.’

‘They’re frightened,’ said Poole simply. No one else spoke. A little servant girl began to cry.

‘Quiet!’ said Poole sharply, trying to control his own fear. ‘Now - fetch me a light and we’ll finish this business at once. Mr Utterson, sir, please follow me.’ He led the way across the back garden towards the laboratory.

‘Come as quietly as you c&n, sir. I want you to hear, but I don’t want him to hear you. And sir — if he asks you to go Inside - don’t go!’ Mr Utterson’s heart gave a little jump of fear, but he bravely followed the servant into the laboratory to the bottom of the stairs.

‘Wait here, sir — and listen carefully,’ whispered Poole. He himself, again controlling his fear, climbed the stairs and knocked on the study door.

‘Mr Utterson would like to see you, sir,’ he called.

‘Tell him I cannot see anyone,’ said a voice from inside the study.

‘Thank you, sir,’ said Poole. He led Mr Utterson back across the garden and into the house. ‘Sir,’ he said, ‘was that my master’s voice?’ The lawyer’s face was pale. ‘It has changed,’ he said.

‘Changed? You’re right,’ said Poole. ‘I’ve worked for Doctor Jekyll for twenty years. That was not my master’s voice. Someone has murdered my master; Eight days ago we heard his voice for the last time. “Dear God!” he cried - then no more. The voice you heard just now was the voice of his murderer!’ ‘This is an extraordinary story, my good man,’ said Mr Utterson. He tried hard to appear calm. ‘If Dr Jekyll has been murdered - why is his murderer still there? What reason could he possibly have for staying?’ 38

‘Perhaps you don’t believe me, sir, but I know what I heard. For a week now the person - or thing - in that study has been crying night and day for some special chemical powders. My master was in the habit, when he was particularly busy with his scientific work, of writing orders on pieces of paper and leaving them on the stairs. We’ve had nothing else this week, nothing except written orders and a locked door. I’ve been to every chemist in town in search of these chemicals of his, but they were never right. They weren’t pure enough, he said. I had to take them back to the shop, and try another chemist. I don’t know what these chemicals are, but the person in that study wants them terribly badly.’ ‘Did you keep any of these written orders?’ asked Mr Utterson.

Poole reached in his pocket and brought out a note. The lawyer read it carefully. It said: ‘I am returning your chemicals, as they are impure and therefore useless. In the year 18— you made up a mixture of chemical powders for Doctor Henry Jekyll. Please search your cupboards for some more of the same mixture and send it to Doctor Jekyll AT ONCE. This is VERY IMPORTANT.’ ‘This is a strange note,’ said Mr Utterson.

‘The chemist thought so too, sir,’ said Poole. ‘When I took him this note, he cried, “All my chemicals are pure, and you can tell your master so!”, and he threw the note back at me.’ ‘Are you sure this is your master’s handwriting?’ asked Mr Utterson.

‘Of course, sir,’ said Poole. ‘But what does handwriting matter? I’ve seen my master’s murderer!’

‘Seen him?’ repeated Mr Utterson.

‘Yes! It was like this. I came suddenly into the laboratory from the garden. I think he had left the study to look for something. The study door was open and there he was at the far end of the laboratory. He was searching among some old boxes. He looked up when I came in, gave a kind of cry and ran upstairs and into the study. I only saw him for a moment, but my blood seemed to freeze. Sir, if that was my master, why was he wearing a mask over his face? If it was my master, why did he cry out like a trapped animal and run away from me? I’ve been his servant for twenty years. And then . . .’ Poole paused, and covered his face with his hands, too upset to speak.

‘This is all very mysterious,’ said Mr Utterson, ‘but I think I begin to understand. Your master, Poole, is ill. And the illness has changed his appearance. Perhaps that also explains the change in his voice. It certainly explains the mask and the way he has been avoiding his friends. And of course, he’s searching for these chemicals because he believes they will make him well again. Dear God, I hope he’s right! Poor Jekyll — that is my explanation. It’s sad enough, Poole, but it’s normal

and natural, and there’s nothing to be alarmed about.’

‘Sir,’ said the servant, ‘that . . . thing was not my master. My master is a tail, fine, well-built man. The stranger was much shorter . . . Sir, I have been with my master for twenty years and I know his appearance as well as I know my own. No, sir, that thing in the mask was never Doctor Jekyll, and I believe that he — it — murdered my master!’ ‘Poole,’ said the lawyer, ‘if you say that, I must make sure. We must break down the study door.’

‘You’re right, Mr Utterson!’ cried the old servant.

‘Very well. Will you help me? If we are wrong, I’ll make sure that you’re not blamed for it.’

‘There’s an axe in the laboratory,’ suggested Poole.

‘You realize, Poole,’ said Mr Utterfeon, ‘that this may be dangerous for us both? Let us now be honest with each other. This masked figure ,that you saw — you’re certain that it was not your master.’ ‘That’s right, sir.’

‘Did you in fact recognize it?’

‘Well, sir, it was all So quick that I’m not really sure. But — well, I think it was Mr Hyde. It was short, like Mr Hyde, and it moved in the same light, quick, active way. And who else could come in by the laboratory door from the street? You must remember, sir, that at the time of the Carew murder Mr Hyde still had the laboratory key with him. But that’s not all.

Mr Utterson, did you ever meet Mr Hyde?’

‘Yes,’ replied the lawyer. ‘I once spoke with him.’

‘Then you will know, sir, that there is something strange about Mr Hyde, something evil.’

‘I agree with you,’ said Mr Utterson. ‘I felt something like that, too.’

‘Yes, sir. Well, when that thing in the mask jumped out from behind the boxes and ran up the stairs, I had exactly the same feeling. That thing behind the mask was Mr Hyde!’ ‘I understand, Poole, and I believe you,’ said the lawyer slowly. ‘And I believe poor Henry Jekyll has been murdered. I believe too that his murderer is still hiding in the study. Now, Poole, let’s go and make an end of it.’ Together they went out into the back garden. The clouds had covered the moon and it was now quite dark. As they passed silently by the wall of the laboratory, they stopped and listened. Further away they could hear the everyday noises of a London evening. From the study above them, however, came the sound of footsteps moving backwards and forwards across the floor.

‘It walks like that all day, sir,’ whispered Poole, ‘yes, and most of the night too. It only stops when some more chemicals arrive from the chemist. Ah, sir, listen to that — do you think those are my master’s footsteps?’ The short, light steps were indeed very different from Henry Jekyll’s long, heavy ones.

‘Have you Anything else to tell me, Poole?’ asked the lawyer heavily.

‘Once,’ said Poole, ‘I heard it weeping.’

‘‘Weeping?’ repeated Mr Utterson in horror.

‘Weeping like a lost child,’ said the old servant. ‘It tore my heart. I felt like weeping too.’

‘Well,’ said the lawyer, ‘we have a job to do.’

They went into the laboratory and climbed the stairs to the study. ‘Jekyll,’ called the lawyer in a loud voice, ‘I must see you.’ He paused for a moment, but there was no reply. ‘If you refuse to let me in, then I’ll break down the door!’ ‘Utterson,’ said a voice from inside the study, ‘I beg you to leave me alone!’

‘That’s not Jekyll’s voice!’ shouted Mr Utterson. ‘It’s Hyde’s! Break the door down, Poole!’

The axe rose and fell. The door shook and a scream of pure fear, like a trapped animal, rang from the study. Again the axe crashed against the door. But the wood was strong and the lock was well made. At last, however, the door fell inwards upon the carpet.

The two men stared into the study. They saw a warm, comfortable room with: a good fire burning in the fireplace and a few papers on the big table. A friendly, homely room. But face down in the middle of the floor there lay the body of a man. The lawyer turned it over on its back and saw the face of Edward Hyde. He was

dressed in clothes that were much too large for him, and in his hand he held a small bottle.

The lawyer shook his head. ‘He’s taken poison, Poole,’ he said. ‘I fear we’ve come too late to save Doctor Jekyll, and too late to punish his murderer too. Now we must find your master’s body.’ They searched everywhere, but there was no sign of Henry Jekyll, dead or alive.

‘Perhaps your master has escaped,’ said Mr Utterson hopefully. He went to check the door from the laboratory into the narrow side-street. It was locked, and covered with dust. On the floor nearby he found a broken key.

‘It’s a long time since anyone opened this door!’ said Mr Utterson.

‘Yes,’ said Poole, picking up the broken key. ‘So how

I did Hyde get in?’

‘This is too difficult for me, Poole,’ said the lawyer. ‘Let’s go back to the study.’

I They searched the study again. ‘Look, sir,’ said Poole, pointing to a small table in the corner. There were bottles of liquid and some white powders lying in saucers. ‘He was testing his chemicals here.’ One of the doctor’s books was lying on the floor. Its cover was torn off. The lawyer picked it up. Doctor Jekyll loved his books and always took great care of them. But he had written all over this one — the handwriting was un¬mistakable — before tearing it and throwing it on the floor.

Then the lawyer noticed the tall mirror on the wall between the glass-fronted bookshelves.

‘How strange,’ said Mr Utterson. ‘Why did Jekyll want a mirror in his study?’

Next they turned to the desk and found a large packet addressed to Mr Utterson. The handwriting was Doctor Jekyll’s. The lawyer opened the packet and three envelopes fell out on to the floor. The first contained a will. It was like Doctor Jekyll’s first will in every way — except one. The doctor had left all his money, not to Edward Hyde, but to Gabriel John Utterson.

The lawyer looked at the will, then at Poole, and finally at the dead man on the floor.

‘I just don’t understand,’ he whispered. ‘Hyde has been here all this time — why didn’t he destroy this will?’

He picked up the next envelope. It contained a short note in the doctor’s handwriting. Mr Utterson saw the date. ‘Poole!’ he cried, ‘this is today’s date on the letter. Jekyll was alive here today. He can’t be dead — he has run away or is hiding somewhere. And if so, why? If he’s alive, can we be sure that Hyde killed himself? We must be careful, Poole, or we may involve your master in some terrible danger.’ ‘Why don’t you read the note, sir?’ asked the servant.

‘Because I’m afraid,’ said the lawyer, in a worried voice. Slowly, he lifted the letter, and read:

My dear Utterson,

If you are reading this, it means that I have disappeared. Please go home and read Lanyon’s letter. Afterwards, please read the confession of Your unfortunate and unhappy friend, Henry Jekyll

‘This must be the confession,’ said Mr Utterson to himself, picking up the third and largest envelope. He put it in his pocket.. ‘Say nothing about these papers, Poole,’ he said. ‘If your master has died or disappeared, this paper may save his reputation. It’s now ten o’clock. I must go home and study these papers in peace and quiet. But I shall come back here before midnight, and then we shall send for the police.’ They went out, locking the laboratory door behind them. With a heavy heart Mr Uttersorl walked home to read his letters.

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