(2019-01-06) Engraver, Gunsmith
A little vignette in the tattoo shop, where Teija comes to visit August for a check-up & some collaboration.

The Mad Tatter

The huge front window is handpainted with expressive lettering reading THE MAD TATTER over an image of a massive top hat in purple neon. A hand holding a tattoo machine is lit up in green neon, three sculpted sets of tubes set up in a descending motion. Every few seconds the hand either rises one, two, three steps or descends, as if inking the hat to the window. At night, the window throws cheerful purple & green light across passersby, lighting up the snow when it falls too.

Inside, there's a counter across from the door, surface a mirror-shine black, uprights in brushed metal inlaid with green and purple enamel diamond shapes. A computer rests atop the counter, and a huge, old fashioned booking tome rests open along the table, filled out in pencil with the days appointments. There's a jug labeled Swear Jaw on the counter, a stack of black t-shirts with the shop logo and EAT ME along the back, and, keeping with the theme, a huge, handcarved wooden sign reading EAT ME is bolted to the back wall.

The floors are checked with black and white tile in reception, a cluster of oversize (and a few tiny) wingback chairs are upholstered in rich crushed velvet. The little coffee tables between them feature piles of tattoo magazines and a couple of small tablets featuring digital portfolios of the artists.

In the rear, a series of tattoo and piercing stations are clean and prepared for use. Large mirrors front the stations. There are two stations in the back featuring privacy curtains for the more intimate tattoos or shy customers. Along the walls are framed sheets of numbered flash for tattoo ideas, as well as several framed photos of finished custom pieces, mostly by the owner, but a few notables by current and past artists and guest artists. While tattoos are the bread and butter of the shop, piercings are also on offer. A small, sterile case of handmade jewelry is situated beside the front counter. Music pipes in from speakers wired above, though the selection is somewhat eclectic, often based on who most recently won a bet. (Shop Owner: TBD)

The Mad Tatter is open, but there's only one client in the chairs at this hour, a young woman being inked by a huge, musclebound dude in the last station on the left. The regular bzzzz bzzzz bzzz of a tattoo machine is steady. From speakers in the eaves plays a Lucinda Williams tune, gravel in her voice occasionally overshadowing the buzz in back.

Behind the counter sits a heavily tattooed woman wearing low-rise jeans, a tank top exposing heavily-tattooed arms, shoulders, and throat. She has a tablet in her hand and is drawing with a stylus, a pair of black-framed glasses on. Her long grey hair is dyed in an ombre, gunmetal to pale grey, and pulled up into a pinned upsweep. She is wearing black lipstick, heavy makeup, and generally looks like she rolled right out of a Biker's bed.

"Jasper! You want pizza for lunch?" August Lexington calls from the counter to the dude in back. He grunts something that isn't quite a word in response to her. "Cool." And then she picks up her phone, putting the tablet down. On the tablet screen is a sheet of American Traditional flash in mid-design. August's fingers are tipped in glossy nails, tips pointed like claws, painted a deep purple-black with silver tips.

Into the tattoo parlor walks a Goth. The sun rose earlier, truly it was a time of surprises. She hasn't gotten that subtle pink tinge of someone who's been out in the cold very long, so she must be coming in from a neighboring shop. Or she parked nearby. That happens, too. Teija's expression is bleak, with something else underlying that as she steps up to the counter as the girl there establishes a food chain. There's a glance at the phone before she looks down along the artwork on the wall, apparently deciding to wait for the woman to finish her business. It'll give her more time to brood.

August's attention doesn't shift from her phone right away, as she's in the middle of some very important business with a pizza delivery website. Her fingers move across the screen rapidly, typing with both thumbs, her nails clicking lightly. She finishes that up, hits send, then reaches to put her phone down on the counter. "Welcome to the Mad Tatter, sweetheart." The greeting is friendly enough, though not effusive. "Good look. What can I do for you?"

Aug's gaze wanders Teija's face, taking in the makeup, and then down, along what ink shows, if any, the coat, shoulders, vest. Her pale-grey eyes finally flick up and she regards the other woman across the counter steadily.

The dark woman turns with an attempt at a polite smile, but something seems to be dragging it back down, such that it doesn't quite reach her eyes, "Thank you." she says softly, "I had some color done a while back, making sure it's healing right." She obviously finds the woman's hair interesting if the track of her eyes is any indication, "Do that yourself?" she asks as she unfastens and shrugs out of her coat, draping it over her arm.

"I touch it up myself, but it's so long now, it's better to have help when I can get it." August murmurs. Which basically means when she can find a salon or a person with the hands good enough to apply the color without wrecking it entirely. "It's much more fun to have someone else's hands in my hair." She smiles faintly, then nods. "Would you like me to take a look at your ink?" The offer is softly spoken, and August stands. She's a tall one, particularly once she's on her feet. She comes around the counter in a pair of five inch platform stiletto heels, glossy black pumps with a red sole, which bring her height up to 6'4". Aug's hand brushes along the edge of the counter as she rounds it, nails tapping lightly. She comes to a stop about two feet from Teija, and takes a lean against the counter.

Teija watches the woman raise up and drift around the counter, flicking a glance at her feet(Is it the shoes??), then nods with a, "Please." She turns slightly to give a good view of the shoulder, rank tats, first. She notes, "Sounds like a way to start an evening." It'd be more suggestive if she didn't have as much on her mind. She does observe, however, "You're fairly new, aren't you?"

"Sorry, my hands are cold. Clean, but cold," August murmurs, lightly placing her hands on Teija's shoulders. Her hands are indeed cool. She doesn't touch the fresh ink, but puts her hands beside it, then leans in to have a good close look at the progress. "I've been here since mid-November, so yes. Quite new. Ben took off and they asked me to stay a little longer." There's some vagueness in her tone, like she's unsure what that means, or how long she might stay. "It's definitely a good way to start an evening." She chuckles, that throaty little rumble easy and soft. "You feeling ok, sweetheart? You seem a little down. None of my business, of course, just a hazard of the job."

"Bad news this morning." the woman says simply with a faint sigh, "I can't talk about it." She only flinches a little at the cold touch, though it's mostly controlled with the woman's forewarning. The scalework around the badges seems the most faded, as do the badges, themselves, though the color fill is a few weeks old at best, though the sleeve itself is probably a couple years old, depending on how the Goth's pale skin holds color. There are hints of something on her back, too, but only when her hair moves just so. She takes it as a comfort the new artist isn't freaking about her strap. These are paranoid times, dontcha know.

Teija could be wearing far more weaponry and August wouldn't outwardly react. It's the ink she's interested in, and that would only change if any weapons were to come out of their happy lil nests. "I'm sorry for your news." She murmurs this, though she does seem sincere. "I won't ask." Simple, done. She moves on from that and asks, "Are you having any undue soreness? It looks good, healing well. Just continue treating it as you have been." She smiles and says, "Also come to me if you need any touch-ups or new work. I'd be happy to work with your canvas." Pale skin on a heavily tattooed woman? The best around to ink.

There is a little shake of her head and, "No, no itching either." she says softly. She smiles a little bit at the musing and nods a touch, "I have some idea's it could be nice to collab on. Make a night of it."

"Anytime you'd like to get a new piece, I'll open the shop for you. These idiots gave me a set of keys." August says, corner of her mouth quirked. "Seriously, I'll work with a collector anytime. Walk ins can wait for me." She hooks an elbow over the edge of the counter and takes a lean. She's quiet for a moment, regarding Teija with those inscrutable silver eyes. Finally, she reaches over to pull a little black card from a small stash by the computer. A letterpress dagger is embossed in the front, foiled silver. On the back is August Lexintgon with a phone number and an instagram handle. She offers one over to the Goth.

It's a good thing someone convinced her to do the business card thing, herself. Teija takes the card between two fingers, looking over the artistry with an approving nod, then pulls a very thin card holder from a very warm place behind her vest. If you got'm, use'm. She pops the top, as it were and tucks August's card in before withdrawing a midnight blue card of her own. Her card is bordered at the upper left by viking style knotwork of stark white ink that flows into more the ribbonlike waves of Old West scrollwork before meeting again at the lower right around the emblem of a modern revolver. Saffron script reads:

Teija Harkonnen


Followed by a phone number and moc.latemyvaehlaer|noriruoyebircS#moc.latemyvaehlaer|noriruoyebircS. Onyx locks onto silver as she forks over her own card, tucking the holder back in it's place, "You have beautiful eyes…"

August takes the card similarly, flipping it to look over the front, taking a long moment to appreciate the design and color. She smiles, eyes downcast when she reads the email address in its entirety, the quirk of her lips made obvious by the dark lipstick she wears. Her skin being pale accentuates everything about her black and grey tattoos too. When her eyes come up again, and she looks at Teija, there's a momentary pause. "Gunsmith? Do you engrave revolvers?" She suspects the answer is yes, but she asks anyway. And then she smiles a hair more. "Thank you, sweetheart. So do you."

Teija's smile, still slight, becomes more natural and proud at the observation, "Of course. A little more challenging than pistols, but the rounded surfaces can add a lot of dimension to the artwork." Thinking about the engraving for a moment, or rather a recent example she was shown, brings a little blue to her expression, but it's short lived, "Kinda rod you want worked on?" she asks.

"I've had my eye on a little Colt Cloverleaf Revolver. It needs to be restored, but it's got all the parts." August reaches up to slip off the glasses she's wearing, as if only now noticing she's still wearing them. She folds the earpieces in with a gentle click, click. She sets them aside on the counter. Aug laces her fingers lightly after tucking Teija's card into the back pocket of her jeans. "And I'm in the market for a gift. Maybe a Colt Detective Special. I haven't decided. Functionality is important, but the look just as much."

"Restoration will cost extra, but I'd have to see what I'm working with to know how much. Corrosion, warps in the rifling, that sort of thing." As her arm is getting tired of holding her coat, she casually drapes it over her shoulders and continues, "Detective special, hmm? Double Action down on East Route ten should be able to net you one pretty easy if they don't have some, already. I could work it for you if you want something customized."

"That would be ideal." August tips her head slightly and says, "I'm glad I came into work early today." She mms and straightens up to lean back against the counter and hook both elbows there, hands draped off the edge. "A Colt 1911 is another option. I like the line of them and they look great engraved. The revolver though. Something about those really speak to me." She nods and says, "I'll check out their stock. I go to the diner down there sometimes, so I've seen it but haven't been in." She lifts her hands briefly, then lets them drop, nails ticking lightly agains the upright of the counter. "I'll call you soon. I just need to make a decision once I hold the options in my hands."

Teija nods, "There are a lot of companies putting out nineteen-elevens, depending on your budget and what you want out of it. But, yeah, they really do." she affirms. She offers her hand, and a warmer, "I look forward to it. Thanks for the checkup and the conversation. I feel a little better now."

"You're most welcome. You're also welcome to stop by anytime for a chat. In between clients, I'm happy to talk." Aug laughs, and says, "Sorry. I was utterly distracted. My name's August. Most friends call me Auggie." Obviously, it's on her card, but the nickname isn't, so she shares that. "Around here they pretty much know me as Auggie." She slips her right arm off of the counter, extending that tattooed hand if Teija would like to greet the old fashioned American way, with a shake.

Teija clasps hands for a good shake, careful, artist to artist, after all, "Teija, pleasure." She glances around to see if any eyeballs are on them, then back to Auggie's, "Old crew'd call me Ty, among other things." Despite the spelling her name's actually pretty short, "Most have stories." But don't they always?

August nods. "Usually." Her hands are soft, grip firm but not tight. Gotta preserve those hands. The tips of her long nails just brush Teija's inner wrist. They're not as sharp as they look, tips lightly blunted to prevent any accidental clawings. Also so she doesn't pop her gloves when she's tattooing. "Ty. Pleasure." She releases the other woman's hand at last.

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