I have received a telegram today that makes my heart tremble with fear. John Seward is begging me to come to London to attend to a young friend of his, one Lucy Westenra. I am in an agony of indecision, torn as only a condemned soul can be. What shall I do?
I am apart from the world in this room. The occasional rattling of a carriage or voices of passers-by outside seem far away or as coming through a wall much thicker than the glass of my window. I can hear the clock ticking in the hall. The house has never been so still. As if it was holding its breath awaiting my decision.
Maybe there is nothing in it. The request certainly seems straightforward enough. Strictly medical. Why then this suffocating feeling of foreboding? Why do I, who always keep my own counsel, feel suddenly compelled to share my thoughts? And with you, lost in your own mind, who will never read these letters I won’t send.
I hope to God I am wrong.
I did of course tell John I would come. How can I do otherwise? But I am afraid, so very afraid that I will fail him as I failed you.