The Wind that shakes the Barley.
My Ma told me that the Good Lord gave me hands so that I might curl them into fists and use 'em to stick it to the bastard English. My Pa told me I had hands so I could use them to make something of myself. But I was an enterprising lad, I thought Ma wants me to go out and beat some English, or some Unionists bloody and Pa wants me to make somethin' o'myself. So I went out and made sommat o'myself. Started off small y'see... in the playground, we'd used to bet on who could beat up the other kid. I never had no coin to toss in, but I'd jump in and fight whoever I could for a cut of the profits. I'm good at fightin' not so much dancin' 'round a ring with a referee and ten people watchin' yer with cameras and spotlights. But gimme some tape and an alleyway and I'll tan anyone who thinks they can tangle with a true son of Eire.
Now don't get me wrong, I ain' some sorta idiot whose spent his entire life punchin' people and gettin' me name taken by some Unionist arsehole. I got me grades, me degree in business from the University of Dublin, I got my entire life laid out before me. I coulda taken up boxing a little more seriously, bu'sommat about all the lights and the cameras and the interviews made it all taste just a little bit too sour y'know? I preferred like I said taking me fists to someone in a sand ring in a windy field somewhere in the hills. Why? I think it's somethin' about the blood. The feel of another man's face givin' way beneath your knuckles. The way ya get to watch the light go out in their eyes and then ya get to really go to work. D'ya think the fights I participated in where clean? I once spent an entire hour being sledgehammered by this big bastard from County Armagh, good Catholic lad like me-self but even so a big bastard. No breaks, no stoppages and neither of us looked like we were about to give in, it was a matter of honor y'see. He'd called me a feckin' coward and even though I'd been educated better and brought up to look down on insults as another form o'flattery I still beat his brains in.
Like I said, lasted for an hour, two of us beating on each other. He must have had a good forty pounds on me, elbowed me before we'd even started proper. Must have thought he was some feckin' big shot karate kid or somethin' kept trying to do all these ridiculous kicks and I'd just move outta the way and smack him with a good dose of medicine from me left hand. Ended with me just grabbing him good and proper and biting his nose off, there ain' no rules when you insult a man's honor, no ref to pull me off so I chewed through the feckin' thing and spat it out. I kicked him on the floor and beat him till blood came out of his goddamned eyeballs. It was a low-point for me, seein' that big man lyin' on the floor beggin' for his Ma, I knew he wanted mercy but I wan' about about to give it to him. By that point in me life I'd already joined up with the IRA, I slashed his throat with a boxcutter and had a few of me friends bury him in that lonely patch a'land in the middle o'nowhere.
I joined up because they killed my wife. Aye, wan' no stinking English though, was a unionist by the name o'Tim Docherty. All a big mistake he said t'me when I came after him with a hatchet and a feckin' grenade to stick down his throat. I 'an't even joined up when it happened neither, I married my girlfriend from sixth form Rose, beautiful woman, eyes like clovers and a heart that only St. Pat himself could hope to eclipse. She had this bright, blonde hair like fibers o'gold. Most beautiful woman in town and I was proud to be her husband. Docherty bombed her car six months after our third weddin' anniversary, thought she was some high ranking IRA man's woman and blew her to bits. Din't even have enough of her to bury. I didn' cry 'cause what's the use o'crying when the only person you coulda ever cried around is just a mess of bits and pieces. Horrible feckin' day though, her Ma kept looking at me, like it were my fault that she died. I tried to tell 'em I han't even joined up but even though they said they believed me, I knew they didn' so I did what any man woulda done in my position. I found my local recruiter and I joined. Signed me life away to the IRA so I could get me revenge on that bastard Docherty.
It were hard goin'. He wasn't too high up bu' he was protected and he'd gone t'ground as soon as he knew I were comin' after him. But I found him eventually, I stared at the man who'd murdered my Rose, stolen the light o'my life away from me so soon after I'd finally caught her. He was a fat bastard, couldn' even throw a decent punch he just cried and begged and called out for his Ma, just like that other guy I told ya about. They always cry out for the Ma's never their Pa's. I told him if his Ma turned up I'd cave her feckin' head in as well for what he'd done t'me. What he'd taken. I cut his fingers and toes off and then stuck the grenade in his mouth, pulled the trigger and ran off. People thought it was just another random attack on an upstanding, feckin' member of society. But I knew it was for revenge, blood for blood. Eye for an Eye, s'what the good book preaches, even if I don' always buy into some of the stuff in it.
I don' know if I'm ever gonna see Rose again, if I'll ever kiss her or hold her close like I used to, but that don't make much of a difference does is really? Can't spend me entire life sittin' 'round waitin' for someone to come back who ain' ever gonna come back cannae? Tell the Police? They'd have laughed in my face if I'd have told them that my wife had been bombed, they wouldna of done a thing to help me and they woulda said maybe Rose shouldn't of been so pretty. Bastards... Bastards the lot of 'em. I mean when they're lack of effort paid off for me, they were beauties, but that was only usually 'cause I was threatening, blackmailing or bribing people t'look the other way about certain disappearances or robberies or even parking tickets. They got Al Capone on a technicality like that so I thought I ain' gettin' no tickets and getting dragged off to jail for not payin'.
What attacks have I taken part in? I ain' at liberty to tell you. What I can tell you is a fight I had that got me sent over to this shithole to drum up support from a few of our expatriate friends over here in America. I personally moved on a UDF man who thought it was a funny idea to spraypaint his feckin' horrible slogan all over the place in our half of Belfast. I gave him 'The O'Neill trick' that's what they call it now. What is it? You tie some razor blades up into a strip of cloth and you tie that piece of cloth around your fingers so the blades stick out some when you curl up into a fist. Then you walk upto the bastard you want to cut and you cut his feckin' face face to ribbons. That's what I did to him, I cut his face up. Blinded him slashed his nose, his lips his cheeks and then shot his knees and elbows. Man had to have his knees amputated and I had to get out of town quickly. Why? 'Cause his mates were coming after me or so I was told. I just reckon Leadership wanted me out of there before I got uncontrollable. I was drinkin' half my weight in whiskey and beer every day and even I gotta admit I was becomin' just a little bit too aggressive even wi' people I work with. One of my many listed flaws, alcoholism is, apparently I drink too much but I don't think so, I would say that though wouldn' I?
I spent my first week here in America actually layin' foundations, gettin' names, talkin' t'people, getting to know my contacts. After the treaty we lost mosta our guns, mosta our people. But I'm here now, here to build up somethin' new, already tapping into lines of credit, I brought a few of me friends too. They're here to help me get what I came for, the money, the guns, more contacts. The kinda resources you need if you want to start and win a proper feckin' war. What will I do if someone tries to get in me way? I'll kill 'em, no messing around, no feckin' about. I'll put a bullet in their heads, I'll cut throats, chop fingers, break legs, I will make sure hell rains down on the bastards that try to get in the way. That's why they call me the Butcher, cause I cut people into little pieces with a knife or a razor blade. Learned 'ow to do it from one of the older volunteers.
Y'see the trick with a razor blade is to really dig the tip in, you want to start the cut before you're cuttin'. Y'wanna dig it right in then drag it down quick, trust me when I tell you some of the cuts I've laid open ain' ever gonna help properly and tha's the way I wan' it, I want 'em to look at their messed up faces, messed up bodies, stumpy hands and I want 'em to know that i'm there, waitin', watchin'. Smilin', laughin' even. Makes no diff'rence t'me y'see, no diff'rence whatsoever what happens t'the people that get in my way. Now can y'leave me alone to have a drink? I've had a lon' feckin' day.
IRA DOSSIER ON RYAN O'NEILL LIEUTENANT AND LEADER OF AMERICAN CONTINGENT
Name: Ryan Gregor O'Neill
Date of Birth: 1/2/1978
Mission: To meet up and form relationships with former streams of credit and arms in North America, to pursue further contacts, form and develop new sources of revenue.
Threat Rating: Considered to be nearly constantly dangerous due to an unhinged personality verging on psychopathy. Should be considered threatening to even close friends due to his adverse temperament.
Career Synopsis: O'Neill joined up in 2003 shortly before the ceasefire and disbandment of the PIRA and the reformation into the RIRA, even before he joined he had a reputation around Dublin as being a tough, relatively well known for his business acumen as well as his bare knuckle boxing. O'Neill soon developed a reputation amongst Volunteers due to an excessive lust for violence particularly against Unionist Irishmen, possibly due to the loss of his wife. Has been sent to America due to UDF death-threats aimed at him over the loss of one of their men at O'Neill's hand.
O'Neill has taken part in numerous raids, revenge attacks and outright campaigns. As the head of his flying column O'Neill has proven to be a capable commander and has netted the Army ample amounts of money, arms and equipment as well as created very amiable relationships between us and the _____ as well as the ______ (identities erased to protect our information).
Evaluation: O'Neill could very well prove to be the kind of fiery warrior the Army needs to try and push into a new era and start growing again. Then again having a character like O'Neill could also be a curse, he's a proven fighter, good with guns, phenomenal at taking punishment but his judgement's been clouded with the whiskey as of recently and he's become erratic. As long as he keeps providing the Army with his good, sober, service then I suggest we keep him around but if he becomes too much of a wild dog again like he was before he butchered that UDF man, then we're going to have to get rid of him.