"I know you wouldn't think it lookin' at me, love, but I'm a junkie."
Full marks for honesty to her, if not for her powers of self observation. She was a giveaway, telling the strung-out mister to her left - on the back seat of the 16 - that he was "nothin' but a mean cunt, I've hash on me and you're not gettin' any cos you're just a mean cunt y'are."
He was a man of many noises, none of them English, just a stream of groans and nods and the pluralisation of "wharrayaonabou'yatickdopeyeh?"
I wondered myself what she, the thick dope, was on about as getting any kind of sense out of this beard wisp yoke was an exercise in stupidity. He was badly, badly fucked up on smack cocaine or whatever the hipsters don't call it.
She'd turn on him, then turn to us, then turn on him again. All sorts of names, all manner of abuse to a man whose floating head was left back in some squat on Townsend Street, to my imagining.
How he could have flagged down a bus, paid a fare, made his way up the stairs was beyond me. He must have just appeared there, his heroin superpower that of multilocation.
She softened towards him as the bus turned up George's Street, stopped stabbing him with fingers made entirely from bone, even rubbed his head and said repeatedly, "yer alrigh,' yer bird will sort yet out, yer' alrigh,' yer bird..."
She asked him where he was getting off.
"Bleedin' Horse, meet me bird..."
"I'll help ya off the bus. Get ready now," she said to him, but the act of remembering a specific anything had sent him back to unconsciousness, his head hitting the top of the seat in front of him and his mouth slackening out some drool.
"GERRUP YA CUNT!"
Her language was appalling.
"GERRUP OURRA THAT YA PRICK! People on the bus won't know what to make of ya..."
"Come on, press that bell missus, will yeh? Come on... You've to meet your bird..."
Eventually, she shovelled him up on to his feet, bowled him to the top of the stairs.
"Here..." was the last thing I heard her say to him. "What's your name?"
"Daithí," he said back to her.
"Nice to meet yih, Daithí, I'm Teresa."