“You? The woman who christened Ranelagh ‘Calcutta’ when they stuck a focking Lidl in it?”
T he old dear’s had more work done on her face. She looks like someone beat a swarm of bees off Sharon Osbourne’s face with a pair of running spikes. I mention that to her as well. Those exact words. Just so she doesn’t think this is, like, a friendly visit ?
“What do you want?” she goes – no basic manners. “I’m in the middle of something important.”
I step past her into the hall.
“You’ve been quiet,” I go. “Focking suspiciously so.”
She’s like, “What do you mean?”
“This D4 postcode thing,” I go. “I thought you’d be on it like a bonnet. Every time Sorcha sticks on the news, I keep expecting to see your big ugly face – like a fire-damaged waxwork of Joan Rivers – saying this, that and the other.”
She’s there, “I’ve been busy with my writing,” and she even manages to keep a straight face when she says it.
I’m like, “I was talking to JP, who works as an estate agent, as you possibly know. He reckons this No More Dublin 4 thing is going to knock about another two mills off the price of gaffs like this. Him and his old man are up in orms.”
“Well, I must say, I haven’t really thought very much about it.”
“You haven’t thought much about it? You? The woman who christened Ranelagh ‘Calcutta’ when they stuck a focking Lidl in it?”
“Like I said, I’ve had a lot of work on. I’m writing a screenplay based on my book, Fifty Greys in Shades.”
Something smells. Actually, something literally smells? She does this incredible baked eggs thing with leeks and pancetta and I’m pretty sure it’s that.
I’m there, “Are you having trouble flushing the toilet again?”
She’s like, “I was just fixing some breakfast.”
“Well,” I go, “I’ll have a plate of whatever pigfeed it happens to be, just so as not to hurt your feelings. Bring it into the living room to me.”
And she trots down to the kitchen to fetch it. The second her back is turned, up the stairs I go. Something is going on and I’m going to finally prove it.
On the landing, I find her shoes and her tights, obviously taken off in a hurry and just, like,thrown there? My guts do a literally somersault.
I knock on the door of her bedroom, we’re talking three slow knocks, and a man’s voice – the old man’s – goes, “You might need to give me an hour or so, Fionnuala. I’m not as young as I was and I think I might have bruised my tailbone doing that last thing you asked me to do.”
I have an idea then, which I’m admitting is a bit random. I pick up the old dear’s tights and I put my hand into one of the legs, pulling it all the way up my orm to my shoulder.