Sketchbook (tattoo)

Jolie wore long sleeves. Everyone would laugh if they knew she’d been working on a dragon. So far, it was just an outline.

She was polishing windows when a woman in the waiting area asked her what was underneath her shirt. “Nothing,” she said. She tried to affect a blasé attitude. The woman smiled.

“Let me know if you want to show me.”

The woman was older, pushing forty, but she was in good shape. Jolie found her flirtations strange, but smiled back warmly.

Later, when Tom told her someone had requested her, she knew who it was.

“Listen, you can say no. I think you should say no, but this lady wouldn’t listen to me.”

Jolie did not say no. The woman asked her to draw anything she wanted, and it would be okay. She wanted the surprise, she said. “If you’re as inexperienced as they say, the surprise should be fantastic.”

She wasn’t sure where to begin. She sterilized all her tools several times as she interviewed the woman on her interests. Fish were a possibility. Maybe a whole aquarium of tropical fish.

“Just do whatever you would do on yourself,” the woman said as she pulled down her panties and lifted her dress. Jolie wasn’t sure. She leaned back in her chair and nervously tapped her thigh. The woman smiled, taking the gesture as an invitation, and crawled face-down on Jolie’s lap.

The woman’s butt pointed straight up. It was covered in doodles. ‘Stylex’ had signed his name. So many of the old designs crossed over each other that none were fully intelligible. As Jolie pressed the needle down, the woman moaned in a mix of pain and joy.

Jolie drew a dragon. When she made a mistake, she crossed it out and tried again.

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