The old springs beneath the cushion squeak. She on top straddling me, our clothes disappearing into the patterns on the carpet. She is loud but maybe the tours will think it is the ghost of Lincoln. “He had a high-pitched voice, don’tcha know,” one of the mothers will say. This chair, the one in which Lincoln sat on the day of his debate with Stephen A. Douglas, is one of the college’s main attractions, a claim to fame. But today, we have blocked the doors with chairs, newer ones that he did not sit in, preventing any entrance. The room is Booth-proof. She comes at the thought of no one assassinating us, but I cannot stop thinking of the possibility: that someone might find his way in here, put a gun to my head. Then, we hear a pounding at the door. Security has shown up to investigate the barricaded room and the way it moans. I do not want to leave, to stop, but we have to—they have caught us here before, and in the steam tunnels beneath the dormitories, and in the back of the mailroom, where we pressed our hands into piles of love letters as we shuddered. We scoop up our clothing and crawl through the window. The next time I am in this room, someone will tell me that the Lincoln Chair is out for repairs, and I will imagine the sound of a Philadelphia Derringer firing shot after shot.
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Gabriel Garcia Marquez