In A Separate Peace by John Knowles, how does Brinker think that Gene got his own room?

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kathik eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Chapter Seven of A Separate Peace by John Knowles, Brinker goes to see Gene. After admiring his room, Brinker jokes with Gene, suggesting that maybe Gene "fixed it" on purpose, meaning he got rid of Finny in order to have his own room. At the time Gene just laughs, but he has an uneasy feeling that Brinker really thinks he was responsible for Finny's fall.

Later in the story, Brinker accuses Gene, in front of the other boys, of purposely pushing Finny from the tree. Gene reacts by playing along, but he can't actually say the words, "I pushed him," so he tells one of the younger boys to make a guess as to what happened. The boy agrees with Brinker, accusing Gene of causing Finny's accident. Gene denies it and goes back to his room to escape his accusers.