Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Chapter 2 - Search for Mr. Hyde
That evening, instead of his customary habit of reading after dinner, Mr. Utterson goes into his office and takes out a document from a safe that reads, Dr. Jekyll's Will. It states that upon the death of Henry Jekyll, all his possessions were to pass into the hands of Edward Hyde, but in the case of Dr. Jekyll's "disappearance or unexplained absence for any period exceeding three calendar months," Edward Hyde should step into Henry Jekyll's place. Mr. Utterson has long considered this will an act of madness and had no part in drafting it. He begins to think that something is amiss. For some answers, Mr. Utterson makes a trip to Cavendish Square, to the house of Dr. Lanyon, his long-time friend, and Dr. Jekyll's close colleague. There, he finds out Dr. Lanyon and Henry Jekyll had a falling out of sorts--over a scientific argument. And to his disappointment, Dr. Lanyon knows nothing about a man named Hyde.
In his sleep, Mr. Utterson tosses in bed all night, thinking and dreaming about the mysterious Hyde. He concludes that if he can only catch a glimpse of that face, much of the mystery surrounding Henry Jekyll and the mysterious will can be resolved. Mr. Utterson determines that night: "If he be Mr. Hyde, I shall be Mr. Seek" (pg. 49).
From then on, Mr. Utterson tries to locate Mr. Hyde, posting himself near the door at different hours of the day. Finally, one day around ten o'clock at night, Mr. Utterson sees a man about to enter the door. "Mr. Hyde, I think?" asks Mr. Utterson, confronting the stranger. Mr. Utterson introduces himself as Dr. Jekyll's friend. The man replies that Dr. Jekyll is not at home and asks how a stranger comes to know his name. Mr. Utterson asks to see his face and the man hesitates for a moment before defiantly revealing his face. The man gives Mr. Utterson his address in Soho and asks again how Mr. Utterson got his name. Mr. Utterson replies that he got it from Dr. Jekyll. The man accuses Mr. Utterson of lying and promptly disappears through the door. After this encounter, Mr. Utterson corroborates Mr. Enfield's queasy feelings about Hyde. He observes:
"The last I think; for, O poor old Harry Jekyll, if ever I read Satan's signature upon a face, it is on that of your new friend." Chapter 2, pg. 52
Mr. Utterson turns the corner and comes to the house of Dr. Jekyll. The old butler, Poole, answers the door. He tells Mr. Utterson that Dr. Jekyll is not in. Mr. Utterson asks whether it is proper for Hyde to go in and about the adjoining wing of the house that serves as a laboratory. Poole says that Dr. Jekyll has given Mr. Hyde the freedom to go in and out as he pleases. The servants are to obey the young man. Mr. Utterson leaves, speculating that Dr. Jekyll must be paying for the sins of his wilder youth (perhaps Hyde is the doctor's illegitimate child?). Mr. Utterson is humbled by the thoughts of his own past. Although blameless compared to most men, he still feels ashamed when he thinks of some of the forgettable things he has done in his life. Feeling sorry for his friend Jekyll, Mr. Utterson vows to uncover Hyde's evil plot. He fears that if Hyde becomes aware of the existence of the will, Dr. Jekyll's life might be in danger.