around the time mountbatten was wondering where his legs went we were wondering why the hell we agreed to come back here.
it had been almost six years.
''well. I never thought I'd see this fucking place again.'' I sighed.
he looked at me, out the window, and then back at me. he took a deep breath and smiled.
'same again?' he asked.
"go on then" I said, not actually looking forward to another black and tan... "pretty dead tonight, this place."
'well it's monday... though it feels like thursday morning' he handed me my pint 'and I fucking hate funerals' he added as he lit another cigarette.
three lads stood at the end of the bar slightly swaying.
I couldn't figure out if the older one was staring at me, the clock on the wall or the door behind me.
this particular fella had his eyes rolling all over the shop. he was bitterly angry about something and I secretly hoped it was the other two he was with.
sure as a coffin cover closing a small argument ensued and the other two yelled something unintelligible to us before they left.
wonky eyes half chased them out the other door before returning to the bar and settling back into staring at us.
"have a look" I said, nodding towards him. "he's looking for something..."
'well I ain't selling' he quipped. 'and fuck that mick. that's not why we're here.'
"we're never going to find this fella... we're running on nothing more than rumours. we've absolutely no chance of finding him in this city."
'we'll find him, don't worry' he assured me 'and then we'll get back to see about getting you home.'
it had started to rain. I'd no idea where our hotel was and now it was dark.
wonky started to yell from his end of the bar.
"oi, you. you two... yeah... I recognise you."
I looked over at him. "nah... not you, the other one. that twat with the wee fucking pony-tail."
this wasn't going to end well. we'd been back for all of half an hour outside the airport taxi fare.
"oi. oi you..." he continued "you don't fucking remember me, do you? you thought you could walk back in here and pick up where you left off... come back after three or four or five fucking years with your bloody long hair thinking no one would fucking recognise you. well I do! and I know why you're back. I'll tell you this, my lad... you're here to bury your fucking mate. your fucking mate who had it coming to him. he knew the fucking risks and he fucked up just like you two have."
I knew we shouldn't have come back here so soon.
the two of us walked away years ago... flicking lit matches over our shoulders if I remembered correctly.
"so tell me mr. fucking pony-tail..." he yelled as he started towards us "what makes you think you can prance in here with your nancy-boy hair and pick up where you left off?"
wonky pulled a lead cosh from his belt, now fixated on the pair of us. he picked up his pace.
I looked to the door behind me as mr. fucking pony-tail got between us.
he then reached over the bar, grabbed the limey lemon knife and immediately cut off his pony-tail.
wonky had slowed down now almost to a near stop, totally nonplussed.
mr. freshly cropped then threw his locks at him.
wonky knew not to catch it as it fell to the floor.
as he rose his whirly eyes to look up at mr. newly shorn he received an inside kick to the knee cap which made his body seem almost electrocuted... I had never seen anybody jolt in their body like that... and as he fell forward our hero stuck the paring knife in the back of his neck.
the barman never stopped wiping glasses. this was nothing he hadn't seen before.
this was something very similar to what he'd seen nearly six years ago.
'I trust you'll have this cleaned up before morning.' I rhetorically asked.
"yes, sir" he answered "and if I may say so, it's been an absolute pleasure having you two return... as we've been waiting."
I lazily offered acknowledgement and looked away from him to the rain, now pounding thick at the public house windows.
"what time do you reckon we should get to the service?" I asked.
'well I suppose that depends, shawn o'shaughnessy' the cc humoured in his best cockney and wiping his hands on a bar mat.
'...it depends on what time you get us down the bloodletters to clean this barnet up, yeah?'
we'll always have buffalo, sweet josh.