I stood before the Lincoln Memorial, staring up in awe of this statue of one of our greatest presidents. But how could my journeys have led me here? I wondered. Why am I standing before him now in this powerful thunderstorm with the lightning crashing around me and the thunder thundering around me like a loud thundering noise?
“Oh, Abraham Lincoln!” I cried out. “Why am I here?”
“You have come a great distance, my son,” I heard him call back. “But you must travel a great deal more to be a great president.”
“How do you mean?” The rain matted my hair flat and glistened off my forehead.
“You have the Strength of Washington,” he said. With a crash of thunder, he was standing beside me. “But you do not yet have the Courage of Lincoln.”
“The Courage of Lincoln?”
“Of course,” Lincoln nodded with a slight smile. “You need the Courage of Abraham Lincoln to lead the great country of ours. It took courage to lead a divided nation and it took courage to take a bullet to make it whole.”
“You took the bullet to bring the country together?” I asked. “But then you knew John Wilkes Booth would shoot you?”
“Of course,” he said. “But I wasn’t afraid of that washed-up actor. I was only afraid that he might get on stage and start doing Hamlet. Ugh what a ham.”
“Really?” I asked.
“Oh yes,” he nodded. “Should you become president, keep your eyes out for the likes of Jimmy Fallon or John Stamos.”
“OK, thanks for the warning,” I nodded. “So how will I get this Courage of Lincoln?”
“Like this.” From out of nowhere, the sixteenth president sucker punched me and sent me flying. The fury of his punch sounded like a semi truck full of steel I-Beams crashing from a thousand feet in the air into a warehouse filled with 50 gallon drums.
My body arced across the night sky and through the raging tempest until I crashed into the balcony of Ford’s Theater. At once, Lincoln was beside me again. He spun me to the railing and pushed my face in an attempt to throw me over to the floor below. I underhooked his arms and arched my back, throwing us both over and plummeting onto the seats below.
I landed on top of Lincoln but he quickly threw me off and sent me sprawling to the aisle between the rows of seats.
“Have you heard from the chairman yet?” he asked. With a popping of bolts, he pulled a row of the black metal framed with red cushioned seats off the ground and swung them at me.
“I’m afraid that I’m going to have to unseat you!” I called back. I then grabbed the row of chairs, drove them into the ground and flipped the other end up over me, catapulting Lincoln through the air. He crashed into the far wall but I was quickly on top of him. Another punch sent the man who delivered the Gettysburg Address up the aisle and through the wall where he crashed to a stop within a concession stand.
I was quickly on top of him again, but he was just as quick to defend himself with a tray full of soft drinks and one of those hot dog things with the rollers that you see at concession stands and convenience stores.
I collapsed with the impact of the cooker, but I quickly recovered and grabbed a shelf full of candies and threw that at him. As Lincoln dodged the assault, I followed up with squirts from ketchup and mustard bottles. He retaliated by grabbing me and throwing me into a display of cotton candy. I retaliated against his retaliation with a quick sidekick, but he was suddenly not in front of my foot.
I looked around for my adversary, but couldn’t find him anywhere.
“Where’d ya go?” I growled.
With a flash, I too disappeared from the concession stand, only to reappear in front of the Lincoln Memorial once again.
“You are worthy of the Courage of Abraham Lincoln, homie,” his voice rumbled then trailed off like thunder rolling away from the city to another city.