I turned the key, sighed, and pushed the door in. For the ten thousandth time, I laid my keys on the mantle, and walked to the fridge, cracking open a fresh brew. The sweet summer tones of the beer contrasted with the crisp spring day, but I didn't care. Grabbing my pack of Cowboy Killers, I walked outside and lit up.

Soon, I thought, this will all be different. The streets of Southie were alive with an energy seen once a year. Saint Paddy's Day was tomorrow, and the city was on the brink. The end of the cigarette burned down, so I tossed it and lit another.

Tomorrow, I start to avenge the ones I loved. The excitement coursed through my veins, I ran over the plan for the millionth time. The Russian bastards were looking to take over the land in Southie, and the people that were holding out had very little time left. One particular hole-in-the-wall bar, McGintys, had not paid up, even though their ban account was barely in the black. I idly wondered who all would get to witness me taking down part of the mob, and took another pull of my cig.

I put out the smoke and walked back inside the house. I found my knife, unsheathed it, and set about sharpening it. I took a moment to kiss the inscription- Tá sé ach mo charraig is mo shlánú tá sé mo chosaint; Ní bheidh mé ar athraíodh a ionad- before I got to work.

Each pull of the stone along the blade sharpened my resolve. The sharpening stone kept whistling and I went faster and faster until the blade was sharp enough to pierce skin upon light contact. My other two knives went much the same way, until I was satisfied with my own handiwork. Two more cigarettes, some dinner, and then to bed I reminded myself. Tomorrow was going to be a very telling Saint Patrick's Day.