It must be explained here that my cabin had the form of the capital
letter L, the door being within the angle and opening into the short
part of the letter. A couch was to the left, the bed place to the right;
my writing desk and the chronometers' table faced the door. But anyone
opening it, unless he stepped right inside, had no view of what I call
the long (or vertical) part of the letter. It contained some lockers
surmounted by a bookcase; and a few clothes, a thick jacket or two,
caps, oilskin coat, and such like, hung on hooks. There was at the
bottom of that part a door opening into my bathroom, which could be
entered also directly from the saloon. But that way was never used.
The mysterious arrival had discovered the advantage of this particular
shape. Entering my room, lighted strongly by a big bulkhead lamp swung
on gimbals above my writing desk, I did not see him anywhere till he
stepped out quietly from behind the coats hung in the recessed part.
"I heard somebody moving about, and went in there at once," he
I, too, spoke under my breath.
"Nobody is likely to come in here without knocking and getting