the youngest daughter
‘The problem with havin’ two daughters is that number ONE, the youngest is always the prettiest and number TWO she learns on the quiet about how to avoid all the stress number one wore for doing the rubbish first in the first place.‘
Scoresby sits wearied and very nearly pissed and his stonemason’s hand makes sounds like nesting mice as he rubs it around and around his be-whiskered chin.
Eight schooners to the good and being Friday night at the RSL with Mundine coming on in an hour, this night is not destined to be ended early.
‘ We’re in the kitchen tryin’ to figure out howcome she’d kind of missed the last three days of school and everything’s going ok so far with the study and whatnot. Its not like she’s a bad kid or anything.
Just the two of us in there, nice and quiet and me trying like Dick Tracy to get the truth out of her for once.
Mum’s given up and has gone to bed after nearly belting the bedroom door through the wall with all this kid’s shite and that’s the Friday Night Special pasted onto the wailing wall for a week. ‘
Scoresby looks at me like it ‘s my fault that he was never warned of the duplicity and evasiveness of young girls who with wings could pass as angels.
‘ Then she snaps the light off and walks out on me, like I’m standing in me own FUCKEN kitchen, in the FUCKEN dark, trying to make sense out of all her bullshit and the kid’s decided to go to bed on me! ‘
Pete the manager wanders over and asks that we keep the perorations a little less strident. Good man Pete; surfs the Wedge on a regular basis. Known waterman.
Another two schooners please Diane, and soon would be good.
We watch them come over the bar top, twinly obedient and goldenly effervescent, bought and paid for, cold filled to the brim and overflowing their commodious glasses and only forty-five minutes for another Mundine beating.
‘ I’ve went and grabbed her and took her outside and when I asked her to get into the car she didn’t argue one word so she’s sat in the back and I’ve jumped in with no bloody clue what to do next but drive somewhere and get this bullshit over and done with and ten minutes later we were on the way to the Cross.
The Cross …!
And I’m living in Warriewood and its nearly bloody midnight! Geez do these bloody kids know how to upset the order of things or what? ‘
A nod to Diane at the bar and another two schooners are rushed over and how sweetly do they fit the hand that lifts them to the mouth that needs them and with only twenty minutes to the fight I’m hoping Scoresby comes home on this saga with a wet sail.
‘ We went all the way to Darlinghurst Road without saying a word, complete bloody silence like I’m a Leb fucken cabbie or something on the way to the airport and I’ve parked the car near the hospital and got out, opened her door and she’s come out too.
Kid’s probably completely buggered for a reason for all this by now, being only fifteen but fuck that and I’ve grabbed her hand and here we go wandering about queersville at one in the morning.
Me and a pretty young kid, and there’s the wall over there with youngsters about her age waiting on a slow death for about ten bucks a toss. What a bloody nightmare that joint is.
What’s wrong with those blokes?
I’m not wearing anything on me feet as usual and if you were driving by at the time I musta looked like some old perv who struck it real lucky.
We stopped and watched an old hooker slide down a doorway into a puddle of her own black blood; we walked around two youngsters asleep in each other’s arms in the gutter.
One of them looked as if he had died a little while ago. His girl was shaking like a freshcaught fish in a bucket.
We passed a thin faced old creep hanging out of a halfshut doorway who made me an offer for the young flesh on my arm and after a while me youngest daughter started talking to me again and later on we stopped at this little Arab joint selling coffee on the street. Don’t those blokes ever sleep?
Comin’ home we both sat in the front of the car and listened to Hendrix all the way to Warriewood. Turned it all the way up. Bold as Love, you know that sly old bastard pretended he was queer to get out of the army?‘
Scoresby got up and put his big arm around my shoulders.
‘ My lovely girls mate, now where’s the pisstrap and lets hope that Choc gets whacked again tonight the tough little bastard, and I’ll have another schooner if you’re buyin ‘