I have two tattoos. One on my arm and the other on my leg. One is on my right side and the other is on the left. I feel… balanced.
But the other day I was writing about a character, a particularly sexy man and I finished the story but something was missing. What made this man stand out?
I had written him as a straight white man. Well-made but not special. Except he had to be special…
Oddly, I had come across the same in a child’s story. The character goes through a journey and in the process discovers who he really is. He needed to change physically as well as mentally so I decided on tattoos.
Both the man and the boy got them. In the man’s case it was a tribal tattoo running down his back. Something I find sexy, so why not put it on my character? And the boy?
Well, I did this:
The moon hits its point directly above the house and bathes the garden in a pale blue light. I reach out my hand, already knowing what I’ll see. I remember the bite of the rose and the sting of the pain as the plant drank from me. In that moment I was changed. I am not the boy that crawled through the broken door of the hall. I am different.
I push up the sleeve of my pyjama top and there, twisting around my arm, is the most exquisite tattoo. Spiraled around me are the rose and thorns of the labyrinth. I can only see it in the moonlight, but this is the first full moon since Dad came home and tonight it glows, standing out from my skin as if I have a light within me. It calls me. Turning from the window I dress quickly.
The boy has a tattoo that is only visible in the moonlight. He is different, but unless you look at him differently he is the same as anyone else.
Tattoos for me, personally, are important. They have signified that I like myself, all of me. And for my characters they make them something different. They stand out. But the tattoos are an extension of their character – an added extra, rather than a defining element.
This blog is my musings from the daily prompt – Tattoo-You?