By John F.D. Taff
Read by Kris Johnson
The needle touched skin, vibrated with the small hum of a person in deep concentration.
A smell, electrical, full of ozone with metallic undertones, crackled from everything in the cramped little backroom of the tattoo parlor.
There was a brief moment of contact, full of excitement and anticipation.
Jesse grasped my hand, squeezed it tightly.
Then, the needle broke the skin, punched through.
A dot of color, a bright, iridescent green, lay side by side with a perfectly circular dot of blood that had been coaxed to the surface by the tattooist’s instrument.
Jesse’s skin flinched, relaxed.
The needle approached again, penetrated.