CHAPTER FOURTEEN: Guests of the New Republic (Part 5) OR VISITORS TO THE COUNTRY OF ETHNIC SAMENESS (Part 5 as well)
Continued from Part 4 of Chapter 14.
An Early Childhood by Paddy Flanagan is a mock, surreal autobiography by a fictional Irish literary figurehead, champion bodhrán player and broadcaster. This chapter is a parody of Frank O'Connor's short story Guests of the Nation.
“Two of ours were executhered by the British last Tuesday fortnight,” sez Mike Donovan, with the cold eyes of a killer on him. “They killed our boys, so we Kildare boys…have to do what’s only right in an act of war…and execute you pair.”
“Turns out my chums are a shower of feckers, as you would say, chums,” Burper declared, rather quietly. He liked saying the word fecker. It was a new word to him, learned only when he was captured. It showed that even though we were about to kill him, like a pack of Judasesiii, he was more like one of us than anyone of us were, even though we were very similar to being a bit like ourselves, if not identical.
Pretty much being exactly as we were, we quickly dug a pair of eight foot deep graves, and within five hours, they were ready. We brought along the building site foreman, who readily agreed that the bodies would be kept well hidden – to sustain a bit of tension – for at least two episodes.
Mike Donovan gave Burper a handkerchief. Burper let a huge emotional, sobbing guffaw out, blowing into the hanky, and giving his nose a good wipe and dabbing his teary eyes. He held the handkerchief back out for Donovan.
“Thanks, chum,” he said. “No hard feelings.”
Mike Donovan looked at the snotty handkerchief but he didn’t take it back.
“That was to be used as a kind of a blindfold,” Donovan muttered in response.
“Oh,” Burper said. He then wrapped it around his eyes, but he didn’t have to tie it. It just stuck to his face in the deathly darkness in a kind of shlurping noise.
“You know, chums,” Burper said, “I’m a quiet man. Not like your John Wayne. But I’m not one for long, rambling speeches, and I have to tell you now, the most important—”
Burper fell first to his knees, and then rolled into the hole we’d made for him.
The smoking barrel of Mike Donovan’s gun was pointed where Burper’s big head had been.
“Now, where’s Eaglekins?” Mike Donovan asked, turning around.
Mike Donovan’s head exploded.
Two more Irishmen got heads bursted off their shoulders before we realised we were surroundered by feckin’ Britishers. Shplayashk! A fourth hit the dirt. And a fifth.
Irishmen scattered and I saw the one Englishman in my eyeline – Eaglekins – flee from the clearing, into the bushes of a nearby woods. I sprinted after him in pursuit as the Britishers wiped out most of the brigade.
Colonel Gold Bollocks Tiptoft had been replaced by Colonel Coote Decker, Earl of Mount Wrath, who was even fiercer than Tiptoft in his hatred for Irishmen, a bit Irish as he was himself, and the self hate in him to boot.
Eaglekins spurted through the trees like a cross country athletics champion that looked like a gazelle. Or a beautiful young lithe woman, when you’re out for a run yourself, sweat pouring out of you, and she’s passing by, sniggering. But I had my pistol out, in pursuit, until he reached an open stretch of land and turned around.
“EAGLEKINS!” I roared at him with hardly a breath left, gun aimed at his head, some distance as he was from me. “I loved you like a dog! A feckin’ DOG, Eaglekins!”
He knew I wouldn’t be able to shoot him. The expression of gloating victory on his complacent face at his escape said it all. He started yelping like a dog, and then he stuck his tongue out in mockery against me, like a dog, and then the 5.40am Drogheda to Kingstown Express Steam Train ploughed into him, and he was gone beneath it, shtone dead beyond all of a reasonable doubt.
Continued in Part 1 of Chapter 15, after the final part of Chapter 14, which will be found here and a bit weaker than this ending at that, so it is, but it has to be done to wrap things up a bit, and continue the saga.