fever damaged

March 3, 2018

a tattoo you

The creatures riding her back were created from multi-coloured inks. Eve recognised Rheacus the centaur – who was raping a nubile Atalanta between the slight rise of shoulder blades. Below a griffin fled the skinny waistband of those semi-translucent harem pants – escaping the flaming breath of a green, jewelled dragon whose tail curved up above her latissimus dorsi. Such fine works of art – skin art – were rare. Eve had seen plenty of tats in her time, but never ones as realistic – or as animated – as these.

In the soft golden light of the night club, this young woman looked totally surreal, a walking art gallery, and sight of her made Eve feel fever damaged. Like she was seeing in a laudanum dream: a delirium of smooth gold skin and mythical monsters, curling in wild arabesques – arabesques that apparently guarded the woman’s inner, secret self.

Eve reached out for her as she passed.

‘Naughty, naughty,’ the young woman said, playfully brushing Eve’s hand away with her own. ‘You can look, but must never touch.’

‘I wanted a dance,’ Eve blurted. ‘A private dance…’

What had she done? What the hell had she asked for?

‘Really?’ Quiet amusement in night-dark eyes as they met Eve’s intense gaze. She leaned forward and spoke softly. ‘The booths are upstairs. Very discreet…You can have thirty minutes of me, or an hour if you prefer.’ She gave Eve prices.

‘An hour,’ Eve decided, and fumbled out a roll of cash; she was so distracted she had to count the amount three times to get it right.

The girl, smiling, took the worn, greasy notes.

‘Follow me,’ she said.

Peter Suster
Painted Angels