One Hundred Years of Solitude - Chapter 7


   Rebeca Buendía got up at three in the morning when she learned that Aureliano would be shot. She stayed in the bedroom in the dark, watching the cemetery wall through the half-opened window as the bed on which she sat shook with Jos?Arcadio’s snoring. She had waited all week with the same hidden persistence with which during different times she had waited for Pietro Crespi’s letters. “They won’t shoot him here,?Jos?Arcadio, told her. “They’ll shoot him at midnight in the barracks so that no one will know who made up the squad, and they’ll bury him right there.?Rebeca kept on waiting. “They’re stupid enough to shoot him here,?she said. She was so certain that she had foreseen the way she would open the door to wave good-bye. “They won’t bring him through the streets,?Jos?Arcadio insisted, with six scared soldiers and knowing that the people are ready for anything.?Indifferent to her husband’s logic, Rebeca stayed by the window.
   “You’ll see that they’re just stupid enough,?she said.
   On Tuesday, at five-in the. morning, Jos?Arcadio had drunk his coffee and let the dogs out when Rebeca closed the window and held onto the head of the bed so as not to fall down. “There, they’re bringing him,?she sighed. “He’s so handsome.?Jos?Arcadio looked out the window and saw him. tremulous in the light of dawn. He already had his back to the wall and his hands were on his hips because the burning knots in his armpits would not let him lower them. “A person fucks himself up so much,?Colonel Aureliano Buendía said. “Fucks himself up so much just so that six weak fairies can kill him and he can’t do anything about it.?He repeated it with so much rage that it almost seemed to be fervor, and Captain Roque Carnicero was touched, because he thought he was praying. When the squad took aim, the rage had materialized into a viscous and bitter substance that put his tongue to sleep and made him close his eyes. Then the aluminum glow of dawn disappeared and he saw himself again in short pants, wearing a tie around his neck, and he saw his father leading him into the tent on a splendid afternoon, and he saw the ice. When he heard the shout he thought that it was the final command to the squad. He opened his eyes with a shudder of curiosity, expecting to meet the incandescent trajectory of the bullets, but he only saw Captain Roque Carnicero with his arms in the air and Jos?Arcadio crossing the street with his fearsome shotgun ready to go off.