Little snot nose Sullivan had all grown up. Well by law anyway. Since his birthday last month he could now be tried as an adult. That’s the state telling you you’re a man. It had been a nothing day for him so far. But the night was kicking off. “The boys” were on-form, hanging at the back of the bus. Four porn trained shaggers ready to set aim on Dublin city’s sweaty humping nightlife. They were heading in from City West dressed in their shitty vests. A pink tee that hung on him like the wrapper on a Wham Bar. He had lost the scally fringe from boyhood and was banging the slick rick military jobby look. He figured himself as a bit of a solider in the war of crushing that pussy. The vodka and Jolt on the bus was giving him the sweats and making his skin red like a freshly slapped arse. But oh boy was the craic mighty. The banter bus was breaking all the red lights and bombing towards the perfect night out. There was that glittery fizz in the air like speckled yips that crumble before you touch them. This was going to be The Night. The boys were looking like Jack Jones models, even Trevor was looking good and he usually looks like buff bar lizard.
Sullivan swallowed gob-fulls of his jazzy cocktail between rounds of loudly regurgitating mangled jokes they’d heard on a panel show on tv the night before which they thought they were the only ones who watched and were therefore happy to pass off as their own. The bus was empty bar a few foreigners but they don’t count. The heave-ho of the trundling bus made Sullivan’s gut-juice tsunami but he’d be fine once he was on terra-firma.
But this stop was worth it. Two girlos with legs from the floor to their arse bambi-walked up the stairs and sat in the middle of the bus. The boys were obviously sitting at the back, prevailing their authority like the Kings they were. The girls were noticed. Cueing the hollers from the boys. Cue the look back and the tutting. They were now involved in the game of sexes and hoes. Sullivan and The Boys were split between two camps. Most of the boys were fine with the banter for banter’s sake but fuck it going anywhere beyond the 65b bus. Ya pull a bird you’re going to be wineing and dining her all night and it’s only half eleven. That’s a shit load of vodka red bulls and she can get back on the boat if she thinks you’re going to share your shoulder of Huzzar with her. She doesn’t plan ahead she can go and shite. Warm up a few slappers in the club, secure the after party and sign the deal there.
But Sullivan was feeling like tonight was special. Like the brew of a British tramp. He could do anything his grisly heart could dream of tonight. He was going to get the ride before he even hit the queue of the club. It’s never been done in his circle of lads but that only meant he had to do it. Sullivan was going to become infamous after this. He’d be up there in a part of legend-dom only reserved for VIPs with bottle service on the mother fucking house. He gave his plastic silver bottle of wicked piss a swirl and poured three swallows worth of swag petrol down his throat. Gave the boys the divel eyes and sauntered up the aisle to the seats opposite the girls almost out of earshot of the whoop and wooes of the party peasants down the back.
He got a closer eye full of the pretty little things. They were both decent looking but if he had to give the hottest bird award to one of them then it would go to the one with the bigger tits, hands down. But he’d settle for either. After all this is just the bang before the blowout. The queen of the sheets will be at the club once he’s vetted the riff raff by wearing the face off a couple of frogs. The girls roll their eyes to each other. As girls have a tendency to do to him these days. Where the fuck do birds get off? He thought to himself, then took a fresh swig to stop thinking so negatively.
He asks them where they’re headed tonight and starts the ball rolling on that. The pre-ride tennis match begins with the balls flying back and forth. Sullivan chats real casual with them while slowly amping the familiarity. This could actually happen. He thinks to himself. The giddy cock-numskull in his head even make him feel he could get a double team going on. That would mean he’d never have to do anything else of worth in his life. He could float down the Liffey in a boat as the whole city salutes him. That would be so fucking class. He thinks and drinks. The caffeine and alcohol are now working in tandem to keep a steady supply of words coming out of his mouth. It’s too easy. He says things and they answer and the bus is only half way there so all he got to do is keep it up til town then get off with them and then “get off” with them. That phrase made him smile but then sad that he couldn’t use it on them. There’d be others he assured himself.
The bus jerked him mid-thought. He lost track of the formalities he was spinning but fuck that it was time for a different tact. He got hush and asked them did they want pills. They huddled in. He had yips alright. They were his for the night but he could spare two anyway. Well maybe a half each. They wanted them. Grand job. Now he had a reason for taking them down an alley.
This was easy as fuck. Two blowies, a poke with a warm up poke, the club with the boys, burp, banter to the extreme, all you can meet buffet, burp, fill the balls back up, get yipped out of it, squeezing away for the right arse, an after party with a stunner, burp, then riding rotten for hours, then work tomorrow. But he could worry about that later, that was tomorrow’s problem.
But what was with that wobble? The bus was spinning around like a Guinness shit that won’t flush. Oh don’t think about drink. Fuck. That fucking driver needs to stop jerking the bus. His mouth shut tight. There was bulging in his mouth-to-gut pipe. Serious stuff. A swig would send it back. His eyes watered from the nasty fume of his potion. Down the hatch, quick as fuck. Time needs to start moving forward. There was a stone silence. The bubbles trickled down his tongue but it felt like the dribble fuckers had shown the rest of the belly soup where the exit was and like the gush of a broken rain pipe the sick came pouring out.
He didn’t hit the girls, he didn’t think so anyway. Critical mode kicked in. He was vertical. Staggering off the bus through the fragments of vision his gee-eyes could make out. The driver didn’t stop immediately. The second empting did that for him. And Sullivan was off the bus in fuck knows where. There was grass by the curb. That would now be his gurney. The cold damp muck felt great and there was enough of it to shift around in as the rest of it seeped in sick.
When he felt the damage was done Snot-Nose Sullivan rolled his head upwards. The night sky was clear and there was a fresh chill in the air. He looked up at the stars. It was just him and them, if there was anyone out there. He didn’t feel so alone. It was almost a beautiful moment. Almost til he accepted that he was not going to stand for the foreseeable future so he let it go and tried to enjoy the warm trickle that started flowing through his boot cut blue jeans.
Mark Baldwin 2011