The alchemist's experiment has erupted in a sudden fire, with glass shattering in midair and smoke billowing upward. The alchemist is seated awkwardly in his chair with a startled expression on his face, having turned quickly in a panic. He is seated near a table, with a red cloth and open book bearing an alchemical illustration. A large mortar and pestle, as well as a pair of bellows, sit at his feet. The alchemist is working at home, as we see in the background an adjoining room where his wife is changing the diaper of a baby.