The St. Patrick’s Day celebrations were over. An old drunk started singing ‘The Dying Rebel.’

‘I never would have thought those songs would be anything but historical,’ said the red-haired woman.

‘I never thought they’d put up a border posts across Ireland again,’ the man replied.

He looked at the woman. ‘We need to make America side with Europe. If they do, Britain has no choice but to concede the North.’

‘And Ireland is one,’ the woman said. ‘Everything is ready?’

‘The car with British plates is parked in the alley.’

He handed her an envelope. She pulled out a British passport. ‘Who was David Phillips?’

‘Attache at the British Embassy. Leave his papers in the car. Park outside the American Embassy at midday. You’ll have five minutes to get clear before detonation.’

‘A British attack on their embassy. Do you think the Americans will buy it?’

The drunk reached his final line: ‘God bless the cause for which I die.’


Written for ‘What Pegman Saw’, a weekly prompt based on a view from Google Maps. The idea is to write a piece of fiction of around 150 words based on the prompt. Full details can be found HERE. This week we’re off to Dublin.

This is an imagined scenario based on the very real problem that the British exit from the European Union will result in a hard border returning between Ireland and Northern Ireland, putting the still fragile peace process there at extreme risk. Just one of the many troublesome results of this ridiculous British political and economic folly. It should not be taken as a reflection of my own thoughts, sympathies or otherwise about the situation in Ireland, past or present.

For more stories based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.



  1. Oddly, when I first read this, I thought of the IRA, if not for the inclusion of Europe. It’s a thought-provoking piece that you’ve written – let’s hope the future doesn’t come to that.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great story, Iain.
    The relationship between Britain and Ireland has sometimes been fraught with violence, but lord are there some good stories that came out of it. One of my favorites is Frank O’Connor’s Guests of the Nation.
    That said, I surely hope it doesn’t come to it again.


  3. It seems that the entire world is currently battling separation and deception in its own way. It’s a terrible thing… and I don’t think that it’s going away any time soon.

    The somber tone of your story is perfect in how it conveys the seriousness of the situation at hand.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you. I wish it was a better situation and then i could have written a happier story! As you say, it seems like there will be no end to the way the world is going at the moment.


    • Afraid so in that Britain’s exit from the EU creates a border between Ireland which is still in European Union, and Northern Ireland which will no longer be. Part of the peace process was the removal of a hard border in Ireland, free movement and no border controls. In theory they will all have to be re-implemented. A lot of people are concerned that it will rekindle the troubles in Ireland. The rest of my story is fiction based on what might happen, but i hope it doesn’t come to that.


  4. Ian, this is a random comment but your story reminds me of the line in Last of the Mohicans, “The whole world is on fire.” But our world truly feels like that now. Your story caught that perfectly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Even more interesting for me now that my country (Scotland) has today announced it will ask for another referendum for independence from the UK thanks to the Brexit fiasco. Expect another 2 years of political ans civil strife, some or all of which will no doubt turn up in my stories! Thanks Rochelle.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Heard about the call for another Scottish referendum on leaving the UK. For those of us English who voted remain, it breaks my heart to see the way we’re heading. Passports to enter Scotland? Not far away I fear. I’m with you in fearing more devisive times ahead. All David Cameron’s fault for calling for the referendum in the first place. Sad to say, but the people are not always the best ones to make such huge and complicated decisions.
    Tragic tale but well told, Iain.

    Liked by 1 person

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