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     I reached Mr. Culverton Smith’s house. The butler appeared at the doorway. Through the half-open door I heard a man’s voice telling the butler, “I am not at home, say so.” I pushed past the butler and entered the room. I saw a frail man with bald head sitting. “I am sorry,” I said, “but  the matter cannot be delayed. Mr. Sherlock Holmes………….”
     The mere mention of his name had a different effect on the man.
     “Have you come from Holmes? How is he?” he asked.
     “He is very ill. That is why I have come. Mr. Holmes has a high opinion of you and thought you are the only man in London who can help him.”
     The little man was startled.
     “Why?” he asked.
     “Because of your knowledge of the Eastern diseases,” I replied.
     “How did he get it?” he asked.
     I told him everything. He smiled and agreed to come. Pretending that I had some other appointment. I left him. With a sinking heart I reached Holmes’ room. I told him that Mr. Smith was coming.
     “Well done! Watson!” he said. “You have done everything that a good friend could do. Now you disappear to the next room. And don’t speak, or come here.
Watson finally reaches Mr. Smith's house and tries to bring him to Holmes. Most houses in London had a butler who managed the entire house. They decided who the owner gets to meet. The butler does not know who Watson is and therefore does not immediately allow him to go inside. He checks in with the master if he can be allowed in. When he does so, he leaves the door half-open. Watson hears Mr. Smith telling his butler that he is not interested to see anyone and asks the butler to tell him that he is not available at home. But Watson could clearly see that he was available at home. He is also reminded that Holmes wanted to bring Mr. Smith home by hook or crook. So he pushed past the butler and reached the room where Smith was in. He begs for pardon for being disrespectful and not taking permission but also begins to talk about Sherlock Holmes' condition.
Mr. Smith was a very thin man with a bald head. When Watson mentions the name of Holmes, His face changes, it has a different effect on him. It could be noticed that he had a history with Holmes. He enquires as to how Holmes is doing. He asks about his health. Watson says that Holmes is very ill, just like he has been instructed to. He also says that Holmes had a very high opinion about Smith. He tells this out of his own experience, as Holmes denies getting treated by Watson, nor did he agree to see any other doctor. He was adamant about seeing Mr. Smith, who was not even a doctor. So Watson tells him that Holmes believes that Smith is the only man in the world who can rescue him. When asked what made Holmes think about him in such a way, Watson says that it was because Smith was from Sumatra and that he might know about Eastern diseases. This makes Smith proud of himself, and he agrees to come.
Holmes had specifically instructed Watson not to stay there once Smith agreed. So Watson makes an excuse and gets back home to Holmes. He pretends that he had another appointment to get away from Smith. He informs Holmes that he has done what was asked of him. Holmes appreciates that Watson had executed the job efficiently. He instructs Watson that he has to stay in the next room and is not supposed to come out of it or speak until he has been called for. At the moment in the story, the readers suspect that Holmes has a plan and is up to something.
Meaning of difficult words:
ButlerChief servant of the house
FrailVery weak and thin
DelayedGetting late
StartledTo be shocked
State Council of Educational Research and Training 2019. Term 1 English Standard - 10. The Dying Detective - Arthur Conan Doyle (pp. 189 -201). Published by the Tamil Nadu Textbook and Educational Services Corporation.