A Study in the Color of Ravens' Feathers (烏羽色の研究, Karasubairo no Kenkyū?)
-A record of M.D. W-
Once, I was worried about a certain person’s well-being.
While normally my friend – let us call him Mr. H – would reserve his abundant curiosity to only a professional level, it was a private investigation for a man who has helped us up until several years ago. Though Mr. H is not as young as some of the youths who would spend their pocket money in back alleys, he is still far younger than us. Though he has reached adulthood a while ago, he still gives an impression of a youth.
I was introduced to this person through a mutual acquaintance, a writer, and I am greatly under the impression that he is a quite likable young man. Even at one glance, I knew that he was a pleasant person with overflowing talent and kindness, and he has made quite a reputation for himself in the newspapers as a well-mannered philanthropist. While he does have doctorates in medicine, economics and law and is a member of the Royal Society, he is especially well-versed in pharmacy.
Once, I have met Samuel Johnson and Herbert Spencer, who were praised as great scholars by our society – not many people have the honor to call themselves that. While he was still young, he was expected to be able to rival his predecessors one day, and I regarded him as a person of brilliant intelligence worthy of the title of great scholar.
His name is Henry Jekyll.
A person for whom the reputation of a gentleman is not unfounded.
While he does research as a college professor, he also participates in philanthropic work; a man of superior intellect and insight, and so expected to have an innately good personality – the request of assistance with private investigations to Mr. H came in a certain spring. Harry has always been someone with a good moral compass. It goes without saying that Harry was Dr. Jekyll’s nickname. For the time we have known each other – which is quite a while – I have always thought of him as a younger brother.
He, like Mr. H and me, is living in London. He owns a mansion on the shopping district, his spacious residence houses a surgical room and laboratory, and the estate extended to the back alley. The Jekyll residence cannot be any more different compared to the back alley, though I do think that the horribly deteriorated doorway gives off an impression of an eerie fortress. But I digress.
In the first place, what influenced him was just a trivial thing – a follow-up investigation which he helped us out with a while back.
Perhaps I should start over from the beginning. My friend, Mr. H, run a business as a private detective in London. He has handled many requests, and has definitely gotten a fair share of serious cases from the London Metropolitan Police Department [Scotland Yard] some of which even involved the English government. I would love to proudly say that it was a prestigious job, but in truth I would only avert my eyes from the incidents reeking of blood.
Of course, we capture the bad people who have committed criminal acts but, in actuality there are scoundrels who managed to escape from their sins. While I have a right to be proud, I cannot deny the reality that living in this London metropolis is equivalent to, and as mentally exhausting, as fighting a fierce battle in Afghanistan. Mr. H has an unusually sharp level of reasoning as well as the spirit to go along with it, and I was once a drafted soldier. Even if I have grown used to an ordinary life, I will not flinch before corpses that have been brutally slaughtered – which, for any other unprepared person, would naturally be quite a burden.
The requests for investigation from Dr. Henry Jekyll was, until then, not anything serious, and as far as the involved persons and the ones who suffered damages are concerned, those were hardly anything but just handling minor offenses of little importance.
...Or, at first, that was all there was to it.
“Regarding the whereabouts of the dissolved □□□□ Company’s secret accounts, □□□□ circulation in □□□, and the young lady of □□□□ House’s running away from home, there is a list of conspiring families. Though these cases have been resolved, if we investigate further, some kind of mystery or secret is bound to come up.” He said, in a slightly proud tone. In Mr. H’s absence, I was looking after his neglected lodging. Taking a sip of the black tea a certain landlady brewed for us, I answered.
“How Mr. H goes about investigating that, I can only guess.”
That is not a lie, but entirely the truth.
The me of this time could not understand the truth of Mr. H's deductions.
“No, confirming the truth of these incidents was quite a heart-pounding adventure. Still, all of these are just trivial cases. I should think that they would give Mr. H more important major cases to solve.”
“Hmm. Then, do you really want to deal with even the trouble those important cases create?”
I expected him to be caught off guard by those words but, Harry’s expression brightened, his eyes glittering with inquisitiveness, and his cheeks flushed. He himself isn’t an amateur. This young man who is full of enthusiasm for the research into the unknown attracts a lot of interest but, at the same time there is also a sense of dark, hidden danger in him. Even though I spared no words trying to quell his expectations, in the end they weren’t enough to sway his spirit.
“I want to be useful to you. I have no intention of asking what Mr. H was looking for in his follow-up investigations. I believe it is for the public good.”
“Even if you say so. It’s probably hard for you to make time outside of your teaching job.”
“Aren’t you also the same, Doctor W?”
I have neglected to mention this but, in this memo I am not referred to as Mr. W but Dr. W. This memo is just a whimsical document, or maybe a notebook, maybe nothing more than a patched-up fragment of Jekyll’s truth and my vast regret. Even so, taking into account the essential differences in this work of my patched-up daily life, if by any chance in the future someone were to look at these notes, in order to avoid confusion, I will proceed to refer to myself and my friend using these aliases.
In the end, I could not stop Harry. Once I relayed Harry’s words to Mr. H, who has just returned, his personal impression was “Is that young man someone you should really get too involved with? Why would he tear apart the bright future and quick wits of his youth to such an extent?” He added but, just as expected, while I don’t know what Mr. H thought of it, after that the requests for investigations from Harry died down and completely disappeared after two months.
For a while, I was reassured.
It was not a rational worry but, it would weigh heavily on my conscience if this gentleman with a bright future were to have it taken away from him. More so since I can’t help but worry greatly if he were to meddle in those bloodstained disasters and traverse into the – not just dark, but pitch black – affairs of the criminal world. Either way, I was able to completely tuck my worry away into a corner of my mind.
Or, that was what I thought at the time.
And yet, my secret was so easily exposed.
A certain month in 18□□, I suddenly received word from him – a polite invitation for me to visit the Jekyll residence. Led by a well-dressed elderly servant, after passing by a low, wide ceiling into a spacious hall, my dear friend Jekyll greeted me with a charming smile.
I could see his clear, shining eyes through the thin pair of spectacles.
“I have finally achieved it, Dr. W. I invited you here tonight for a little toast.” Standing by the brightly burning red flames of the fireplace, he told me.
“Wait, Harry. What in the world did you accomplish?”
“Of course! I have finally been acknowledged by the extraordinary great detective, Mr. H!"
What kind of devotion is this, I wonder. Aah, this youth, this reputed gentleman, when he should have stayed away from the darkness of the criminal world, he continued to crave the thrill of risk and adventure, to the point that even with my obstruction he did not lose heart and continued to ask for investigations, to go above and beyond to win Mr. H’s favor. And it’s no longer just justice in solving minor offences, he even got involved in murderers and serious crimes.
He has already been sucked in.
To that pitch-black world.
Yes, in retrospect, Mr. H probably has, with that clear, proud head of his, already sensed his true wish. Young Harry was far too talented. That is why Mr. H never mentioned to ‘look into solved cases’, knowing its meaning and significance to him, and Mr. H probably has surmised even his original goal. Harry can no longer be stopped by what I say, because he was already overflowing with excitement and joy at being able to continue to assist Mr. H. I could only wish that he would not be pulled further into those depths.
And yet, he jumped in that abyss on his own volition.
Not only in London – he also peeked into the criminal world of all of Europe.
Not just killers.
His investigation also extended to large-scale conspiracies.
The sins and evil trampling on humanity and sneering at the law. In one go, he found out the horrifying, terrible faces many people tried so hard to keep hidden; and yet, undauntedly, fearlessly, he continued his investigation, continued to draw up even more data for Mr. H. He personally went to the opium den on East End, and even asked a certain group of boys for the current situation. Unbeknownst to anyone, Harry spent his days furiously trying to probe into that darkness. That force and vigor is reminiscent of the Orient express that has started being operational in recent years, or rather, like a transcontinental train running at full speed through a new continent on an endless journey, and so worried was I for his sake that one night, I told him:
“You shouldn’t keep doing that, Harry. Mr. H is truly satisfied with the data you gathered but – and excuse my rudeness for saying this – even you, compared to his extensive information network, are only one person. Surely you aren’t aiming to keep playing a spy.”
And this young man, this stubborn Mr. Henry Jekyll, instead of looking disappointed like I had wanted, replied with a refreshing smile.
“I’ve already been interested in this, Doctor. As they are, humans will only continue to accumulate more horrifying and dreadful evil. We are too easily possessed by resentment and hatred. If you ask me, I think humans is the Devil [Satan]. And why is that? According to the Church’s teachings, if a Messiah will shoulder all of humanity’s sins, then humans can freely stain their hands with cruelty and evil.”
“I don’t care if you want to criticize how his methods are wrong but, aren’t you being too much of a hopeless romantic? Calm down, Harry. Any more than this and I would recommend you to smoke some pipe.”
“…I’m sorry. I said too much.”
Even though I said such harsh things, he wasn’t even a little bit angry. Truly, he is a sincere soul who is not at all tempted by evil. Perhaps, I thought. The light hidden within this young man, without losing its gentleness, might just be able to survive and stay shining in the darkness.
But, I was mistaken.
Before long, dear Jekyll saw a possibility.
That is ----
Murder amounts to half of the London metropolis’ crimes, and if we estimate that almost all crimes remain unsolved, it is an atrocity. Figuratively speaking, England – or rather, the entire nation – is like a spider’s nest comprised of more than a thousand threads of evil; and in the center must be the one who controls all of it ---- yes, we can even call that person the Napoleon of the criminal world, the personification of evil, the incarnation of the darkness within our character.
The one who festers evil.
The feared one.
The one who disrupts order, destroys the world, and corrupts all that is good.
And yet, in our society he is the one who escaped his karma and walked free without any punishment----
It is because of him that my friend Mr. H has continued to work so tirelessly on all those follow-up investigations!
The one who, with a wicked resourcefulness normal people cannot comprehend, still yet spreads his evil and sins throughout our society like a monster!
While I know the truth about what is going on; Mr. H and I have been locked in mortal combat with that huge crime syndicate, and will continue to do so for years to come but, before that, at a point in a certain month in 18xx, dear Dr. Henry Jekyll was thoroughly troubled. It was not a physical-related problem. It is as if his logic and reasoning has been trapped in an invisible cage of his own self.
He who had known about the existence of the accumulation of humanity’s evil incarnated (even though such a possibility should be close to nil!) has – and while this expression is not wrong, it may be misleading – become fascinated.
With the feared Napoleon of Crime?
After that, Mr. Henry Jekyll secluded himself in his mansion.
A complete change to his image as a sociable gentleman, he not only quit his teaching job but also nearly disappeared. Naturally that means he can no longer help Mr. H with investigations or be able to talk to me.
At that time, I insisted that a good young man living in this city should not set foot in the lower depths of the criminal world, but somehow Mr. H did not agree and only told me that, since an incident has not happened, I should just mind my own business.
Days passed while I kept worrying about Harry.
But, the incident happened. It happened.
At that time, London was in an uproar because of a murder case of a member of Parliament; and only shortly after that, Harry – Mr. Henry Jekyll mysteriously committed suicide by poison.
Alone, secluded in his library, his final moments surely were terribly troubled.
I cannot even begin to imagine how it must have been.
If only, at that time ---- even though I have had so many chances! ---- I had dampened Harry’s enthusiasm, if he had stayed a young gentleman blissfully unaware of the world’s darkness, he would not have met such a tragic death.
“Your regret is because you wanted a different conclusion; but in a sense this is what he himself had wanted.”
On our way back from Harry’s funeral, Mr. H told me this but, I don’t agree.
Even now. I am filled with regret and sorrow.
Because he is someone who should not have approached evil.
Records of the experiment-------
Month ■, Day ■
The salt I ordered from Messrs. Maw finally arrived. The compounding of the drug that can chemically alter the human mind will now commence.
Month ■, Day ■
First phase of compounding, successful. I am much obliged to the Archelot House’s cooperation. I have promised them a check of 20 thousand pounds as well as a detailed documentation of the results of the experiment.
Month ■, Day ■
Second phase of compounding, successful.
I could not reach the third phase but, starting tomorrow I will use myself as a human experimental test subject.
Month ■, Day ■
Experiment on a human test subject commence.
The subject’s ------ the observed transformation of my body and mind is revolutionary and yet, I cannot yet proclaim this experiment a success.
The duration of the drug’s effects is unknown.
By taking the drug a second time, the subject’s body and mind returned to normal.
Month ■, Day ■
The subject is confirmed to be in good health. I believe there seems to be no problems.
Month ■, Day ■
Second experiment on the subject. The dosage has been increased.
At any rate, this is not a success. It is a failure.
I cannot just become it. I have to let it out.
Month ■, Day ■
Third experiment on the subject. The transformation and alteration is once again conducted, but it is yet again a failure.
Yes. A failure. Can such a thing succeed?
Month ■, Day ■
Fourth experiment on the live subject. Once again, a failure.
Failure, why was it a failure?
Then, I’ll buy a full-length mirror tomorrow. I’ll also rent out an apartment.
Month ■, Day ■
Fifth experiment on the live subject. The result is…
By the way, I’m in the mood. I think I’ll let loose at the pub tonight! And the opium den isn’t such a bad idea either!
Letter to Mr. H --------
Month ■ , Day ■ , Year 18
Dear Mr. H,
By the time you read this letter, I will no longer have been in this world. How the circumstances has become like this to the point that I would have to disappear, even I could not have predicted it. However, I have a hunch; and at the same time in light of the situation I will describe below, I understand how I came to be so close to the edge in my final moments.
First of all, I solemnly swear that all the contents of this letter is the truth.
Written in here are nigh unbelievable things, but if nothing else I implore you to believe me.
[Aah? By this point who the hell are you begging to believe you?]
I was born into a wealthy family in the year 18■■.
You can say that I was blessed. With intelligence, with an environment surrounded by virtuous people, with a secure future. I myself hurt for the children suffocated with poverty in the East End, for the me as I am is how my parents and friends have raised me.
And yet, there was a defect within me.
That is, intolerable, surging pleasure.
I was living while hiding such wretched desires. Yet, I do not think I would harbor such a vicious temperament. I am ashamed to have thought myself above the nature of humans who live seeking pleasure, to have believed myself to be stronger mentally than the average person.
It is just like a disease. People say I am a philanthropist, a virtuous gentleman with good conduct; and it would not be amiss to say that at first I also held that belief. Without manifesting evil, without hypocrisy, one who spread good into the world.
And as I was, for me to have received a personal request from you – could it have been called fate?
I do not blame you in the least.
I probably, at the conclusion of this immensely difficult battle between good and evil, will go down the same path yet again. That is, the evil crawling in society is active to the point that anyone born upon this world would have some very traces of that very evil – it was inevitable that I would realize that.
Good and evil.
For humans, they do not stem from a single underlining nature; they are dualities.
As I worked for you, I have arrived at this conclusion. While now I know this is far from the perfect truth, and I admit that there was a horrible oversight, the past me was not at all self-aware.
And so, I started a battle with evil.
[Hyahahaha, that’s some fine arrogance there, mate!]
All humans have some evil as another side of them.
Even I, even you and Mr. W, and the man called the Napoleon of darkness are no exception. Man is not wholly pure, and at the same time they are not completely evil. It is the moment we embrace one or the other in the end that matters. If we investigate more thoroughly, we will find not only good or evil, but we may be able to separate many facets to our nature!
But I digress. Let us return to the matter at hand.
As I was saying, I tried to separate the good and evil residing in people.
My way of accomplishing this was chemistry.
I created a drug that could extract the part that could be called ‘inferior’ within me, the part that hid evil desires, leaving only pure, sublimated virtue within myself. I want to tell you everything, but according to the conditions of a certain distinguished family’s assistance, I cannot divulge the details of this drug and the special salt I used to compound it. For you the true meaning of the name ‘Clock Tower’ may be something of little import and you might already know that it is another abyss different from the one of the criminal world; therefore my secrecy may be futile and unnecessary, but please allow me this.
Either way, I took and extremely dangerous risk. For wanting to create my body anew, that could only mean the destruction of my current body – meaning unless I take the medicine in small doses, my soul will piece by piece be destroyed and my body will before long end up the same way.
And yet, my body and soul went through with this experiment.
Henry Jekyll’s body and soul has certainly been altered. Just not as an incarnation of good, but one of evil.
[And that was me; indeed, yours truly! How nice of you to go as far as to record my existence, I’m honored!]
I shall now be forthright.
The inner conflict of good and evil is a topic that has plagued us since prehistoric times.
The conclusion transcends any physics.
Originally, this experiment was supposed to save people, or humans in general, from evil.
However ---- aah, is that really the case?
Nothing but perverse enjoyment, evil that induces dread – while I worked for you, I saw such cruelties, and fearing the possibility of such impulses existing within me as well, I, by myself, in trying to control evil, turned my back from the purgatory that is this world.
I immersed myself in this research only for my own sake.
Then, is it not fitting that I have so ridiculously failed to this extent?
That’s right. I failed.
While the drug was supposed to separate evil from me, it instead created a second personality [Hyde], transformed from the part of my personality hidden away by my virtuous nature. Unable to achieve my original objective of cutting down evil, I have also created a second personality, or a second existence. My only consolation in this misfortune is that the me called ‘Henry Jekyll’ did not disappear. By taking the drug a second time and enduring an intense pain as if my body is being torn apart, I could return to myself.
[What’s with that. Drinking the drug the second time will return you to your old self. Oh well, thanks to you, rich and well-prepared as you are, I’ve been able to get away unscathed, hahahaha!]
…Two personalities residing in one body.
I have repeated this experiment countless times. Amidst the pain that naturally comes from the impossible process of dismantling and reconstructing myself, having already resigned myself to the possibility that I might die, I took the drug again, and yet once again I only transformed into Hyde, once again I laughably repeated those days smeared in madness.
Once I transformed into Hyde, he would just behave how he liked.
If he thought returning to Jekyll would be convenient for him, only then would he drink the potion.
At first, his behavior was of a wild nature exactly like how I was when I was young, the kind that I tried to keep hidden – meaning that those actions of his was full of the recklessness and vigor of a youth. He would hang out night after night at the bar and the opium den. But, alas, just as I imagined, there is no goodness in him! The more he who embodied pure evil ran amok, the deeper he sank into the darkness.
At the end of it all is one night, near the back door of my residence, he so cruelly hurt an innocent girl. My personification of evil, Hyde, only continued to hurt her no matter how much she cried and screamed, and he left her there just like that.
You and Mr. W must also have heard rumors of this cruel scoundrel. His true identity is undoubtedly me, or to be specific, my second existence Hyde!
And yet he did not stop at this atrocity.
Rather, he, no, this shadow of my own self freely engaged in violence.
And the culmination of it all is…
M.P. Carl Danvers!
That merciless murder of the pitiful old man, a case bordering on brutality!
The culprit is me!
For me who have transformed into Hyde, only a minor offense was enough reason for him to turn that aged man into a cold, dead corpse!
With a cruel excitement as if like a naughty child playing with his toys until they broke, he continued to strike the helpless victim, to commit the serious crime of treating another person’s life like a plaything.
If the devil truly exist in Hell, at that very moment, that devil was none other than me, none other than Hyde.
[What’s with that, oi. Don’t exaggerate a kill to that extent ---- and also, do you really think I only killed that one time?]
Shut up. Shut up. Just shut up.
This is my letter. Don’t write anything in my stead. Don’t whisper into my ears.
You do not exist anywhere, for as long as I am myself you do not exist anywhere.
Aah, I beg of you.
Please just do for me one final thing.
And then, rest assured. I will not cover up your crimes by blaming it solely on you.
You are me. You were created from me, you are a part of me.
By now, I have no intentions of denying it.
…Please excuse my rudeness.
As you can see, I am in a state of extreme agitation.
Even so I want you to believe me. All the things I have written in here are true; they are things I want to tell you no matter what. Please, if you will grant me this one generosity of hearing out my recollection until the last page. I don’t have much time. I have used all my remaining strength to send an old friend of mine a letter, and my body and mind have almost reached their limits. As I repeatedly took the drug, my soul gradually turned into Hyde. When I went to sleep as Jekyll and woke up as Hyde, I was so confused I was speechless for a few moments. I know that the violence in this soul will only increase.
Even now, I am gripping this pen while enduring the absolute dread of a transformation.
As it is right now, it is undoubtedly Hyde’s victory.
When my body and personality completely disappears from this earth, Hyde will continue to fester his tyranny unhindered, spread tragedies tainted with fresh blood and tears ceaselessly, and one day that tyranny will transcend our simple, normal life into a primordial form. I can see it. While for now Hyde remains a part of me, the root of his actions and his final destination is to plunge this city into the shadows.
Probably, he might become like something armed with sharp claws.
Probably, he might become something with an unsightly set of jaws.
Just a sight of it will compel fear and panic -------
No longer the darkness of the color of ravens’ feathers, but of a pitch-black beast.
Surely, that is what will become of me in the end.
Something living in the night, howling at the moon, prowling around seeking the fresh blood of innocents.
It cannot be stopped.
I do not wish for it. Surely, even Hyde should not want to be reduced to a mere beast. Because then he will not be able to enjoy the wine and women he loved so much.
Before we turn into a beast, I will end myself and Hyde’s existence.
This is certainly my victory. However, it might be my victory against Hyde, but I am aware that I cannot triumph when it comes to other people.
In the end…
I must tell you of a fear that haunts my mind.
Or rather, it is only for that reason that I am gripping my pen and continuing this letter.
Evil exists within humans.
I have not just proved it with my own body, I have unleashed it upon the world.
Look at the daily newspapers filled with grievous crimes. And on the other hand, many, many more crimes happen without our knowledge, without being exposed.
This is how humans are.
Even as we value virtue and sing praises of ideals, we cannot separate ourselves from evil. This is certainly not the seven sins of the humanity that can be cleansed by a messiah.
Because humans are like this…
Should I say, in order for humans to retain the nature of what makes them human…?
From time to time, we humans are as fiercely savage as we are lost. Even though we know our end to only be tragedy, we cannot stop – an unstoppable impulse. We, the pitiful beings called humans; it is precisely because we have intelligence that we cannot ever cast it away – if I were to put it in words, that should be it.
The evil of humanity -------
These are my utmost true feelings. This great evil contained within humans is something no one can ever defeat. For as long as humans exist, we cannot run away from it. The reason is that just like how we cannot cast away our intelligence, we also cannot cast away evil.
Aah, how terrifying!
Laugh at my ignorance, my shallow wish, all you want ------ just by granting this formless existence a temporary form, just by lending him my body, Hyde, evil has become a second aspect of it and bared its fangs dripping with blood at society! To imagine that one day, evil would acquire an even greater form! Would humanity, then,...
Truly be unable to go against it...?
[If I were to get serious against you bastards, scared shitless as you are ----- of course there’s no way in hell!!!]
Wer mit Ungeheuern kämpft, mag zusehn, dass er nicht dabei zum Ungeheuer wird. Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein.
[He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you.]
From Friedrich Nietzche’s “Beyond Good and Evil”
Newspaper article of Month ■, Day ■
Earlier this morning, the body of college professor Henry Jekyll was discovered in his home in ■■■■■■■■, London. The ones who found the body were his servant and his closest friend, lawyer Gabriel John ■■■■■■■■.
The authorities have concluded this to be a suicide by poison.
Dr. Jekyll, as a well-known philanthropist, had had many of his good conduct featured on this very newspaper.
“Settle all ties with Messrs. Maw, Colonel. From now on, we cannot use that anymore.”
“This time, we have achieved an end result of great interest. We should at least pay our respects to that brave Harry.”
“Ha. It is indeed unexpected that he would have the knowledge and technique to refine a drug like that. He probably had even achieved a faint understanding of true, bona fide alchemy.”
“He killed a man who at the very least deserved better.”
“…I’m just joking.”
Some years later --------------
Year 1888, Month ■, Day ■
Today, too, the current era’s London is again covered in the gloomy fog mixed with smoke and soot.
The fog, which is still clearly visible even from a certain area’s lodging, is not natural; rather, the poison that comes with the advancement of civilization has perpetuated and befouled the misty white fog of the British Empire. There’s a certain sense of irony in it – or so someone would say.
Standing by the window of the second floor of the lodging, with a difficult expression on his face as he reads the newspaper, Mr. H – a thin, tall figure like a statue – is, with all due respect, a man with an entirely different perspective, a different point of view from everyone else; but for now he’s only glowering at the fog while maintaining complete silence.
That is, until Mr. W, his roommate and assistant, speaks up.
“You’re making such a difficult face. What happened? Is there something interesting on the news?”
“No.” Slightly turning his head to the side, Mr. H curtly replied.
An immensely wise man as he is, he has probably been thinking about the young man who committed suicide.
His friend Mr. W has also probably surmised it. Because this tall, slim man, England’s greatest detective, would very rarely make some allusions to the young Mr. Henry Jekyll.
As someone who would even examine the various type of tobacco ash or the soil of London’s surrounding areas and could discern them at a glance, he has the makings of a learned scholar. Of course, in the pursuit of criminals, he looked forward to the thrill of the chase itself. In this lodging there are countless files, methodically tagged and sorted; those files, neatly organized on a shelf, is probably the only semblance of order in this cluttered office.
His information network, supported by a great number of people ------
That Henry Jekyll was also one of them.
“In the East there’s a saying that ‘awareness comes only through practice’. The proverb is something along the lines of ‘to know and not to do is to not know’. For him who wanted to further his own knowledge, no matter how you see it, he really was a true scholar to the end.”
“I know that, but what does it have to do with this morning’s papers?”
At Mr. W’s question, Mr. H wordlessly set the newspaper down on the side table. On the front of the morning paper, the Daily Post, the large headline ‘The incident of Jack the Ripper!’ is printed.
“Rumors of an incident, huh. Looks like we’re going to be busy.”
“I only deal with crimes committed by actual, existing humans.” Mr. H quietly replied. As the completely exasperated Mr. W stared at him, Mr. H once again turned his eyes to look at the window.
What are those eyes possessing an amazing power of observation looking at?
The dark fog?
“That’s the responsibility of the folks at the Clock Tower.”
“What was that about Big Ben?”
“The victims will probably reach more than twenty. Won’t be more than thirty.” Paying no heed to even more of Mr. W’s questions, he continued. “But, yes, someday ------“
He stopped mid-sentence and took a smoke, from the pipe that he has somehow gotten hold of amid their conversation,
“A time will come when that which can burn everything to ashes will finally take form.”
Mr. H breathed out a foreboding premonition – together with a puff of tobacco smoke that lingered in the air.