In the short story "The Door in the Wall" by H.G. Wells, the narrator, Redmond, introduces the reader to Wallace, a career politician, who is soon to be named a Cabinet Minister. Most of the story takes place in London, West Kensington. The two boys attend Saint Athelstan's College, and later, Lionel Wallace goes off to Oxford. Wallace is haunted by a childhood vision of a door in the wall that leads to a magical garden inhabited by two spotted panthers, a young girl, playmates, and a woman dressed in purple.
Unfortunately for Wallace, he dies just prior to turning forty, at the age of thirty-nine. His lifeless body is discovered in a railway excavation where a door was mistakenly left unfastened. Wallace went through the doorway and fell to his death. The story ends with the narrator, Redmond, pondering whether or not Wallace escaped into a better world or merely fell, accidentally, to his death.