Lord of the RamsLord of the Rams

Christmas Extract - Little Devils

Santy and the lads

This short festive extract, taken from the second chapter of Lord of the Rams, sees the Rams and his friends causing trouble for their school teacher (Cooney) in the run-up to Christmas.

As is often the case, Rams's friend Goosey is the catalyst for the headmaster's woes ...

Despite Goosey¡¯s jester-like antics, the Rams wasn¡¯t in any way suspicious when the prankster arrived into class shortly before the Christmas break with a carefully-wrapped gift for him. The two lads, along with Stano, would normally exchange gifts every Christmas, so this act wasn¡¯t out of the ordinary. Unwrapping the gift, Rams was surprised to see a large box of sweets before him. He knew that if he opened it in class, the vultures would devour the goods within minutes, so he opted to put the box into his schoolbag. It was still break-time so Cooney was busy finishing his tea in the staff room, creating the perfect opportunity for Paul McGovern to sneak over to the schoolbag and tear a gaping hole in the box. Before the Rams had a chance to react, he could see the contents of the box tumbling out of the hole and, rather than sweets, big stones crash-landed onto the floor with a thud.

Unbeknownst to the Rams, almost everyone in the class had been in on Goosey¡¯s prank and¡ªby refusing to share his gift¡ªthe Rams had unwittingly deflated the air from Goosey¡¯s cunningly-conceived plan. As a last resort, and as a means of evoking some sort of response from the mean Cavan bastard, Paul had decided to open the box, thereby revealing the truth. Unfortunately, the trick had by now been severely diluted and thus didn¡¯t deliver the laughs that Goosey had expected.

Nonetheless, the raw ingredients for a prank and a half were lying on the floor, and Goosey knew he had to act fast. Gathering up the stones, he placed them back in the box in such a way that picking it up would once again relieve it of its contents. This time, however, he placed the time bomb in the middle of Cooney¡¯s desk and returned to his seat just as his unsuspecting victim returned to the classroom.

A big smile that would put the Mona Lisa to shame lit up Cooney¡¯s face. For months he had been terrorised by these kids who did their utmost to make his life hell and now with Christmas approaching he realised that perhaps these little devils might not be on the one-way street to Hell.

¡®Ah guys, I don¡¯t believe it,¡¯ he said, approaching the desk and gleefully reaching for the box. ¡®Thanks very much. There was no need for this at al . . .¡¯

As stones cascaded onto his desk, cutting him off mid-sentence, Cooney quickly realised that he had been duped by the same shower of heartless bastards who he¡ªalmost for a fraction of a second¡ªbelieved might have changed their ways. Dumping the stones into the bin, he set the class some exercises, but the reborn devils failed miserably to contain their laughter. Happy Christmas indeed!

Give a book to your friends and family this christmas: Purchase Lord of the Rams online.

Praise for Lord of the Rams:

"Smith¡¯s tightly written memoir will charm the naysayers into reconsidering their view of the decade that fashion neglected and youth turned their backs on ... a diverting and entertaining read." - Evening Herald

"The book is genuinely funny in parts, told in a jocular style, with plenty of misadventures along the way. Anyone raised in rural Ireland, not just in the 1980s, will recognise the cast of eccentrics and misfits that Smith has assembled." - Books Ireland

"Written with sufficient verve to hold the attention of the reader to the final philosophical thought." - Book View Ireland

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