The old man seemed gradually blending into the chair, the damask waistcoat to resolve into a cushion, the red slippers to shrink into little red cloth bags.
He looked at the chair; it was a fantastic and grim-looking piece of furniture, certainly, but it must have been a remarkably ingenious and lively imagination, that could have discovered any resemblance between it and an old man.
'The chair remained motionless, and spoke not a word.
'"Queer sort of thing, this," said Tom Smart, looking first at the chair and then at the press, and then at the letter, and then at the chair again.
That of the Peacock differed in no material respect from the generality of such apartments; that is to say, it was a large, bare-looking room, the furniture of which had no doubt been better when it was newer, with a spacious table in the centre, and a variety of smaller dittos in the corners; an extensive assortment of variously shaped chairs, and an old Turkey carpet, bearing about the same relative proportion to the size of the room, as a lady's pocket-handkerchief might to the floor of a watch-box.
No use; nothing but queer chairs danced before his eyes, kicking up their legs, jumping over each other's backs, and playing all kinds of antics.
Over the chair, he was dropped, and for a fraction of a second the posture was his of a man sitting in a chair.
This time, lowered quickly, he sank into the chair like a half- empty sack of meal, and continued so to sink, until, crumpling at the middle, his great tawny head falling forward, he lay on the floor unconscious.
For the day came when Mulcachy rapped the chair with his whip-butt, when the attendant through the bars jabbed the iron fork into Ben Bolt's ribs, and when Ben Bolt, anything but royal, slinking like a beaten alley-cat, in pitiable terror, crawled over to the chair and sat down in it like a man.
Save for himself, the arena was deserted, although, overhead, suspended from the roof-bars, were block-and-tackle and seven strong iron chairs that drew his instant suspicion and caused him to roar at them.
Lowering one of the iron chairs, and attaching it firmly in its place on the floor, Mulcachy prepared for the teaching of the first trick.
Hopping down the room, he overthrew, one after another, all the smaller and lighter chairs as he passed them; arrived at the end, he turned, surveyed the prostrate chairs, encouraged himself with a scream of triumph, and leaped rapidly over chair after chair on his hands--his limbless body now thrown back from the shoulders, and now thrown forward to keep the balance--in a manner at once wonderful and horrible to behold.
The last I saw of him he was pouring out that glorious flood of words--his deformed body, poised on the overthrown chair, his face lifted in rapture to some fantastic heaven of his own making.
Martha Baker, SW Regional Chair
- Regional Chair
term expires December 31, 2014
General Past Chair