The Mystery of the Yellow Room HTML version

Chapter 13
The Presbytery Has Lost Nothing of Its Charm, Nor the Garden Its Brightness
A week after the occurrence of the events I have just recounted--on the 2nd of November,
to be exact--I received at my home in Paris the following telegraphic message: "Come to
the Glandier by the earliest train. Bring revolvers. Friendly greetings. Rouletabille."
I have already said, I think, that at that period, being a young barrister with but few
briefs, I frequented the Palais de Justice rather for the purpose of familiarising myself
with my professional duties than for the defence of the widow and orphan. I could,
therefore, feel no surprise at Rouletabille disposing of my time. Moreover, he knew how
keenly interested I was in his journalistic adventures in general and, above all, in the
murder at the Glandier. I had not heard from him for a week, nor of the progress made
with that mysterious case, except by the innumerable paragraphs in the newspapers and
by the very brief notes of Rouletabille in the "Epoque." Those notes had divulged the fact
that traces of human blood had been found on the mutton-bone, as well as fresh traces of
the blood of Mademoiselle Stangerson--the old stains belonged to other crimes, probably
dating years back.
It may be easily imagined that the crime engaged the attention of the press throughout the
world. No crime known had more absorbed the minds of people. It appeared to me,
however, that the judicial inquiry was making but very little progress; and I should have
been very glad, if, on the receipt of my friend's invitation to rejoin him at the Glandier,
the despatch had not contained the words, "Bring revolvers."
That puzzled me greatly. Rouletabille telegraphing for revolvers meant that there might
be occasion to use them. Now, I confess it without shame, I am not a hero. But here was a
friend, evidently in danger, calling on me to go to his aid. I did not hesitate long; and
after assuring myself that the only revolver I possessed was properly loaded, I hurried
towards the Orleans station. On the way I remembered that Rouletabille had asked for
two revolvers; I therefore entered a gunsmith's shop and bought an excellent weapon for
my friend.
I had hoped to find him at the station at Epinay; but he was not there. However, a cab was
waiting for me and I was soon at the Glandier. Nobody was at the gate, and it was only
on the threshold of the chateau that I met the young man. He saluted me with a friendly
gesture and threw his arms about me, inquiring warmly as to the state of my health.
When we were in the little sitting-room of which I have spoken, Rouletabille made me sit
"It's going badly," he said.
"What's going badly?" I asked.