Seán Quinn lay back in the gilt bathtub that he had got the Quinn Group to buy for him, and was hiding from Anglo, and reflected on how honest he was. I am a very honest man, he thought, decent and humble, wrecked by Anglo. I don’t use a mobile phone. I play cards in a house at night where you have to go out into the front street to go to the toilet. I’m not overly shy but I much prefer to sit back and enjoy what I’m doing with my two dogs, the Wellington boots on and dodging around the mountain. It gives my brain more time to do what it’s best at doing. Being honest and getting me billions offshore first and then away from Anglo and NAMA. I am as honest as the Cavan day is long. So honest you could play cards with me all day and all I’d do is dodge and go outside to the toilet, shyly. Never do anything dishonest. Not all day long. Never gamble away 2.8bn. Not the lad who’d cost the State 2.2bn in unpaid loans and 1bn in the insurance levy. Seán reflected on how mean he was, always had been, frugal he called it. Way too frugal to be a gambler. Warm water trickled down on him recumbent through the sterling silver taps he’d bought in Sevastopol. Sure the house was worth 10 million on its own, the size of a small hotel. Class. So I rang Petey and said, lookit Petey, whatever this agreement you and I had for the last six, 12 months. . . whatever advice you’ve been getting from Russia, if you can get that thing put together as quickly as possible it should be done. I’d love to find a handy way out of me difficulties, try to get a wee bit of pride back. He stuck a thick finger into the jar of Russian caviar, pasted it on his tongue and swooshed it against his palate. He loved it. Better than foie gras. Frugal he was. If he managed just to hold on to the Ukrainian stuff he’d still be in the top 200 richest worldwide. Not like when he was 146th in the Forbes list and number one in Ireland. But still enough to make a simple man grin, though his grin was a bit twitchy these days. Just me cards and me toilet and me wee shyness. A few shillings and a top of the mornin to ye. Anglo, them bastards in the Spotlight programme and the bloody media. Out to get him for doin’ an honest day’s work. He tried to think if he’d ever had a dishonest moment, even a wee private one, but try as he could he just couldn’t think of one. I love myself he thought and he rubbed the carbolic across his still broad and hairy shoulders. They couldn’t take those away from him. Fifty years of hard work. 8000 jobs that was what it was about. Not the 4bn he’d once had and had practically stolen from him by Anglo and NAMA and a bunch of do-good gits. I’d a great business built up over decades until I got involved with Anglo Irish Bank, which wrecked Ireland, bullied me out of office, raped me companies and made me a criminal in Irish society. Petey warned me they’d do it. I had zero interest in dealing with the State-owned Anglo after it took over the companies, he reasoned. Poor Brenda hadn’t a clue she’d owned the Slieve Russell hotel since she was three. A beautiful hotel if ever there was a beautiful fake-pillared box in a car-park with Georgian bits added on to give it style. The biggest hotel in Cavan and if I’d had me chance woulda been the biggest hotel in the world eventually. The insurance regulator bastards wouldn’t let me continue charging them special low premiums. Just cos we wouldn’t be able to pay out on claims. Me ol’ Contracts for Difference, me Nestlé shares and best of all me empire. Property empire. Property Property Property. Contracts for Difference. Bad luck and a bunch of bastards. So Aoife’s wedding was paid for by a subsidiary of the Quinn Group and we claimed the VAT back from Revenue, said that the wedding was a marketing event for the Hotel. Jayz we enjoyed the vintage wines and champagne, me in the Bentley and Aoife in the Rolls. Them’s my companies and Petey’s and wee Seánie’s. The whole war cabinet’s . Any loss to the Irish taxpayer from moving me assets beyond the reach of Anglo Irish bank is Mickey Mouse. Never a day off in me life. Never shirked a bit of hard work. Started with the quarries, a bit of the usual with the border back and forth then the glass and a bit of fiddlin with plannin objections, then plastics and soon I’d fuckin lost the run of meself. Pubs, Hotels, Currency, and then the bloody Ukraine. Not my fault though. Me beloved Japanese Yen all gone. 830m dollars pissed away on shares other than Anglo. NOT MY FAULT. Anglo made me sign stuff and sure poor Patricia wouldn’t have had a clue that stuff she was signing was loans. Signin’ is only signin’. And now youse Anglo bastards are saying MY family owes £2.3bn. BILLION. A lot of twenty-one you’d get for that. How’ll they live on just 8k a month – the lads. Sure, I signed documents in a foreign language given to me by Peter Darragh Quinn and trusted his judgment to get our stuff out of harm’s way. Sure, I’m mixed up in getting randommers on the street in Moscow to sign documents they don’t understand making them beneficial owners of Belize-based companies to which we transfer tens of millions of Russian and Ukrainian shopping centres, pubs, hotels etc to get them out of the way of fuckin NAMA on the back of one of Petie’s special mystery loans, but I’m still little Seanie from Derrylin with me gravel pit, who understands nothin, with me wifeen and a house full of scruffy grandkids whose names end with een too. Above all me outside toilet. None of it was my fault, Ireland’s biggest ever debtor thought to himself as he rolled under the turbo-heated bathwater. Jail me arse, he masticated bombastically, envisioning that cow the judge, who held his liberty in his hand. But I won’t be goin to jail, sure I’ve too much money he mused heedlessly. The cutest, greediest, most unaware, treasonous bollix apart from Seán Fitz, in the history of the State – Haughey and Ahern included. He rubbed a dirty facecloth down his fat arse. And squeezed it gratifyingly into the peaty foam.