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— What's that bloody freemason doing, says the citizen, prowling up and down outside?
— What's that? says Joe.
— Here you are, says Alf, chucking out the rhino. Talking about hanging. I'll show you something you never saw. Hangmen's letters. Look at here.
So he took a bundle of wisps of letters and envelopes out of his pocket.
— Are you codding? says I.
— Honest injun, says Alf. Read them.
fdv: " -- Here you are, Alf Bergan said, chucking out a copper. Talking about hanging now I'll show you something you never saw. Hangmen's letters. Look at here.
He drew forth and tossed on the counter a bundle of wisps of letters and envelopes.
-- Are you codding?
The young chieftan O'Bergan, comely in his youth, quaffed the divine nectar of Iveagh.
-- Honest injun. Read them."
So Joe took up the letters.
— Who are you laughing at? says Bob Doran.
So I saw there was going to be bit of a dust. Bob's a queer chap when the porter's up in him so says I just to make talk:
the narrator's worried Doran thinks they're laughing at him and may start something
— How's Willy Murray those times, Alf?
because Joyce has also renamed his real uncles (John 'Red' and William Murray) as John and Richard Goulding, William Murray here is Richie Goulding's otherwise unmentioned doppelganger
— I don't know, says Alf. I saw him just now in Capel Street with Paddy Dignam. Only I was running after that...
fdv: " -- How is Tommy these times and his great invention, Stagger the World.
-- I don't know, Alf Bergan said, I saw him just now on Essex Bridge with Paddy Dignam. Boylan is going to...
-- You what! Ned Lambert said. With who?
-- Dignam, Alf Bergan said.
-- Is it Paddy?
-- Yes. Why?
-- Don't you know he's dead?
-- Paddy Dignam dead! Alf Bergan cried. Are you codding?
-- I am not, Ned Lambert said.
-- Sure I'm after seeing him not five minutes ago on Essex bridge talking to Tommy...
-- You saw his ghost then if you did.
-- What? Good Christ, only five... What...? And Tommy with him, the two of them there near what you call him's. Dead? He's no more dead than you are.
-- I don't know, Ned Lambert said reflectively. They took the liberty of burying him this morning anyhow.
-- Ay. God be merciful to him."
— You what? says Joe, throwing down the letters. With who?
— With Dignam, says Alf.
— Is it Paddy? says Joe.
— Yes, says Alf. Why?
— Don't you know he's dead? says Joe.
— Paddy Dignam dead! says Alf.
— Ay, says Joe.
— Sure I'm after seeing him not five minutes ago, says Alf, as plain as a pikestaff.
— Who's dead? says Bob Doran.
— You saw his ghost then, says Joe, God between us and harm.
— What? says Alf. Good Christ, only five... What? ...and Willie Murray with him, the two of them there near whatdoyoucallhim's... What? Dignam dead?
— What about Dignam? says Bob Doran. Who's talking about...?
— Dead! says Alf. He's no more dead than you are.
— Maybe so, says Joe. They took the liberty of burying him this morning anyhow.
— Paddy? says Alf.
— Ay, says Joe. He paid the debt of nature, God be merciful to him.
— Good Christ! says Alf.
Begob he was what you might call flabbergasted.
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