Doing it deliberately

Richard looked at him, not for the first and certainly not for the last time, through eyes that were narrowed with suspicion.

‘You’re doing it deliberately, aren’t you?’ he said. 

‘Doing what, my dear fellow?’ 

‘I don’t believe there’s a horse in your bathroom,’ said Richard suddenly. ‘I don’t know what is there, I don’t know what you’re doing, I don’t know what any of this evening means, but I don’t believe there’s a horse in your bathroom.’ And brushing aside Reg’s further protestations he went up to look. 

The bathroom was not large. 

The walls were panelled in old oak linenfold which, given the age and nature of the building, was quite probably priceless, but otherwise the fittings were stark and institutional. 

There was old, scuffed, black-and-white checked linoleum on the floor, a small basic bath, well cleaned but with very elderly stains and chips in the enamel, and also a small basic basin with a toothbrush and toothpaste in a Duralex beaker standing next to the taps. Screwed into the probably priceless panelling above the basin was a tin mirror-fronted bathroom cabinet. It looked as if it had been repainted many times, and the mirror was stained round the edges with condensation. The lavatory had an oldfashioned cast-iron chain-pull cistern. There was an old cream-painted wooden cupboard standing in the corner, with an old brown bentwood chair next to it, on which lay some neatly folded but threadbare small towels. There was also a large horse in the room, taking up most of it.

From “Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency” by Douglas Adams


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