"He pressed the bell. Far away in a back room he heard it ringing, and then at once-it must have been at once because he hadn't even had time to take his finger from the bell button-the door swung open and a women was standing there."
"On the second-floor landing she said to him, "This floor is mine." "They climbed up another flight." "And this one is all yours," she said. "Here's your room. "I do hope you'll like it." She took him into a small but charming front bedroom, switching on the light as she went."
"Mr. Mulholland was a great one for his tea. Never in my life have I seen anyone drink as much tea as dear, sweet Mr. Mulholland."
"Excuse my asking, but haven't there been any other guests here except them in the last two or three years?"
"He found the guest book lying open on the piano, so he took out his pen and wrote down his name and address. There were only two other entries above his on the page, and as one always does with guest books, he started to read them. One was a Christopher Mulholland from Cardiff. The other was Gregory W. Temple from Bristol."
"No, my dear." "Only you."
"How amusing," she said. "But come over here now dear, and sit down beside me on the sofa and I'll give you a nice cup of tea and a ginger biscuit before you go to bed."
"Billy started sipping his tea. She did the same. For half a minute or so, neither of them spoke. But Billy knew that she was looking at him. Her body was half turned toward him, and he could feel her eyes resting on his face, watching him over the rim of her teacup. Now and again, he caught a whiff of a peculiar smell that seemed to emanate directly from her person. It was not in the least unpleasant, and it reminded him of. Pickles walnuts? New leather? Or was in the corridors of a hospital?