My pulse is racing all the time. My world is upside down. I remembered the rush of jumping from the top of the AU building. But that avenue of escape is lost to me. I could try to jump from the Night Life building, but that would me admitting to that need – that desire. And Sage and Dev were afraid I’d do something stupid. They hadn’t said anything. But I knew they were afraid of it none-the-less.
I had a lot of fears, but not all of them were controllable. Conquering fear was the best way to feel in control of my life. I needed that. I wandered around the City for hours. Up and down streets, walking in the cool fall air with my earbuds blasting a playlist Dev put together for me. I’d listened to Sage’s music, and he wanted me to listen to his. They were both sweet, I adored them. I loved them both. I loved Dee too. Both of them needed Dee as much as they needed me. We hadn’t been together long for sure, but it was the truth, the reality of our life.
When catastrophe happens it pulls you together or pushes you apart, and it pulled the three of them together. I still felt on the outside, but I couldn’t live without them. I needed Sage for his undying endurance and patience – he loved with all his heart. I needed Dev for his unconditional love – there was a draw so strong between us sometimes I was afraid it was going to break us all apart. But that’s when Dee came in and held us all together. Dee called me out on my shit. She’s break me and put me back together. She was the strongest of us all. I loved them all. And that wasn’t even the sex – which is amazing – alone or together – completely amazing.
I passed the third tattoo shop. The sound of the ink gun at the first one drove me out the door. The second I had walked in and looked around and found too many things out of place my anxiety went through the rough. There was scattered papers all over the table in the back. There was space for ink wells and guns, but the tools of their tray sat scattered around a work station but no one was there.
The third I felt the vibe of the supernatural reverberating in my skull and even after I was passed it I could feel it. So I went back. The draw of my kind. The pull of magic had me inside the shop. The man sitting at the counter was graying hair, his body covered in tattoo’d scales. I grinned at him and he smiled. “Welcome to the Mighty Dragon tattoo parlor. How can I assist a fellow exile?”
I blinked at him and he just continued to smile. He didn’t feel the need to explain so I didn’t ask. “I want something to express my feelings to my lovers that means more than just dinner and a movie. And I need to push past my fear. Control my life for a moment.”
He laughed. “That’s a tall order. I don’t think I have any of those latter things here. But the first I can surely help you with. You said lovers?”
I nodded. “Yes, sir.”
“No sir, please. Just Bran. I should be siring you.” He smiled.
“I was taught to respect my elders.”
Bran laughed. “And I was taught to respect power.”
I sighed. “Nox then is fine.”
“I know who you are.” He said as moved to his work station. “How many lovers?”
“Me and three others.”
“You love them all?”
“With every fiber of my being.” I said.
“I’m going to ask you to trust me. You believe in magic, trust me I know what you want.”
I nodded. “Okay. I’m going to be honest. I’m afraid of needles.”
“I don’t drug my patients.” He said as he pulled out the tattoo gun. “And I don’t really like doing it while they are inebriated.”
“I’m okay. That’s the conquering fear part and controlling my life.”
Bran nodded with understanding written all over his face. “Then sit lad. Let me work.”
I sat down. I calmed my breathing. I stilled my heart beat and I drowned myself in Dev’s playlist. There were a few songs he’d written and sang on there and I played them over and over while Bran drew on my upper left arm. The pain of the needle pierced my consciousness but I focused on the control I had over my breathing, the desire to scream and run away was there, but I controlled my fear, it didn’t control me.
Two hours later Bran was done. He was applying salve and I was admiring his work in the mirror. A dragon wrapped around a heart with an infinity sign – one of the symbols for polyamory. It was perfect and I loved the red and blues of the dragon.
I left with care instructions. My life hadn’t changed. But I felt more whole. I felt in control. I could do anything in that moment. That meant I would figure this all out. I could do it. There was hope. I was strong. It was possible.