Roost, London 2011
LETTER, ARTHUR HOLMWOOD TO Dr SEWARD
Albemarle Hotel, 31 August.
My dear Jack,-
'I want you to do me a favour. Lucy is ill; that is, she has no special disease, but she looks awful, and is getting worse every day. I have asked her if there is any cause: I do not dare ask he rmother, for to disturb the poor lady's mind about her daughter in her present state of health would be fatal.Mrs Westenra has confided to me that her doom is spoken- disease of the heart-though poor Lucy does not know it yet. I am sure that there is something preying on my dear girls's mind. I am most distracted when I think of her; to look at her gives me a pang. I told her I should ask you to see her, and though she demurred at first-I know why, old fellow- she finally consented. It will be a painful task for you, I know, old friend, but it is for her sake, and I must not hestitate to ask, or you to act. You are to come to lunch at Hillingham tomorrow, two o'clock, so as not to arouse any suspicion in Mrs westenra, and after lunch Lucy will take an opportunity of being alone with you. I shall come in for tea, and we can go away together; I am filled with anxiety, and want to consult you alone as soon as I can after you have seen her. Do not fail!
. Photo © copyright by Steve Reynolds.