Title: How They Got Inked
Rating: PG - Gen - Humor - Outside POV - Trickster
Spoilers: General (for all aired episodes)
Disclaimers: SPN & characters are owned by their various creators.
Beta: Thank you Kat!
Summary: The Winchesters get inked.
Fan art!: Chibi-Inked! by urdsama (aka check out more of her stuff at the_dean_show!)
It wasn't like Bob was following the Winchesters around.
He swore he wasn't doing any such thing. The strange fact that the wily hunters seemed to appear in all the same remote corners of the map was a pure and simple coincidence. If there were anything fishy going on here he would highly suspect the two hunters were the ones following him.
If they even knew he existed.
Which technically they did. The Winchesters had searched for him high and low; Like puppies trying to find their chopped off tails; Like a bum convinced there was one more empty at the bottom of the dumpster. The inappropriate analogies could go on all day long if he felt like it.
No sun could stop him. No moon could sway his whim. No star could convince him otherwise.
“Hey Bob!” the manager called out. “Clean up station 2, we got two live ones.”
“You got it, boss!” he answered with a friendly salute. “I'll get right on it!”
Because he was a Trickster that's why.
Stretching out on the plaid sofa, Bob uncrossed his ankles and tossed aside the Gardening magazine he'd been earnestly trying to find interesting. “Station 2” was a retired dentist chair with an ink stained card table shoved up next to it. He supposed all art had its variations of drudgery but the tattoo trade seemed to sink lower than most. It inspired him to create another elaborate analogy to further identify the grade of mediocre that was his workplace.
This “ink parlor” was to the “Metropolitan Museum of Art” like: A “giant squid” was to “Grace Kelly's Aston Martin”
Bob watched the Winchesters discuss dollar signs with manager/artist on call.
It seemed that the good old boys from Kan-zaz wanted something cheap. And nothing lame off the display walls please. They even brought their very own pictures they drew all by themselves.
A few half-hearted passes with the broom and a squirt of windex, and “Station 2” was ready for action. The boys laid out a copy of their precious tattoo on the counter and wondered if the artist of the house could duplicate it on their skin. Bob watched his boss squint at the sketch and try not to spit on the floor. If only the Winchester boys knew - they had gone and insulted a true prodigy of the craft. Bob's employer had worked hard to turn this coin wash into an oasis of true aesthetic. This was a free soul cruelly trapped by economy and forced to sell his genius to the unworthy.
Between getting stoned and watching CSPAN anyway.
“Maybe Bob can do it?” the manager slurred hopefully. “He's real good at all that Disney shit too.”
The Winchesters both gave the janitor a look of true doubt.
Bob took a deep breath and got ready to make a sale.
“Let me attempt to interest you in
one of several images of sin,
which etched onto your ass or tit
will verify you are the shit,
or at least make them second-guess
their doubts about your awesomeness.
Give the merchandise its due:
an icon for the brand of you.
I have pythons, drakes, barbed wire,
maps of Mordor and the Shire,
silhouettes of Che Guevara,
Sonic, Mario, and Lara,
virtual hypodermic needles,
mix and match all four Beatles,
generic white angelic wings
addable to almost anything--
a little tombstone, or a skull,
moons in crescent or in full,
placards with whatever words
you think impress your fellow nerds:
"Keep on Truckin'," "I Love Mom,"
"Shitfaced4Evr In Vietnam."
In the absence of a better blurb,
take "Born to" and insert a verb:
fuck, lick, suck, blow, ride, run, fly,
sleep, smoke, drink, wank, shop, pray, die.
A naked nun in a wimple
is totally simple.
A yin and a yang
ain't no thang.
A balloon'd "For sheezy!"
is just that easy.
Heavy metal themes
are within our means.
This being the case, the time is now
to roll up your sleeves or else drop trow
and, having looked no farther,
step into my little parlor.
The time is propitious to be rash.
Six-month financing, same as cash.”*
When no applause seemed to be forthcoming Bob took a bow anyway. And despite his poetry, they seemed prepared to seal the deal. With great gravity, the boys handed over their specifications. He made sure to nod approvingly at the pretty network of lines and form.
“So what the heck is this thing anyway?” he asked.
They claimed it was a rare and wonderful good luck charm. The design was from a place far way in the Polynesian islands and it was nothing anyone had ever seen before. So stop asking and hurry it up all ready.
The thing looked like a powerful protection symbol to him. In fact, it looked like protection from getting hijacked by one of those black nasties that were making all the hub-bub downstairs lately. Frankly, those inconsiderate bastards pissed Bob off and he couldn't think of a better way to annoy the self-absorbed hell-brood more than by upgrading a Winchester.
“Everything off above the waist please,” Bob ordered. “As I assume you'll be wanting this baby right over the heart.”
A copper coin was flipped into the air to decide who would go first.
The very tall baby lost.
“Just like this right?” Bob drew a template on warm skin. “I just need to add that curve, and that business over there and let's see... Is this what you had in mind?”
They both watched him draw the design very, very, very, carefully. One line wrong and the entire point would be lost. One wrong shade of indigo and all they'd be left with was a permanent stain. Bob made sure the boys saw exactly what they expected to see. Because Bob could make anyone see anything. But he didn't have delusions of grandeur. In fact he thought of himself as the most grounded Trickster currently residing in this lovely dimension.
The Winchesters were still getting their tattoos.
Just not the ones they wanted.
Bob wiped the flesh under Sam's collar bone with alcohol and blew on it just to see him shiver. He fired up the vibrating needles and watched the boy's eyes grow wider. Bob knuckled down and got ready to serrate the hell out of some living flesh. This... pardon his French, was fucking fantastic. Rubbing Winchester fur the wrong way was always good times but not often did such fun coming willing and eager. For a wad of cash they had paid to spend time being stabbed and jabbed and decorated like a pair of totally badass Easter eggs...
Bob's good mood made him even more benevolent than he usually already was.
“Would you like a YooHoo?” he graciously offered. “Perhaps a kitkat bar?
When he pushed harder into the skin Sam started to make more noise than his brother would tolerate. But when Bob explained that such a dark ink required more pressure everyone settled back down. Whenever he started having uncontrollable fits of laughter he simply blamed the pot he'd smoked that afternoon for lunch.
Bob twisted his wrist to dig the needle with enough force to feel it grating against bone. Instead of complaining, Sam's eyes rolled back into his head and he blacked out for a moment or three.
“So far, so good fellas?”
He grinned reassuringly as Dean nodded in hesitant approval.
In all actuality, the severe lines and simple alphabet they required to perform protective magic were too boring for Bob's tastes. Potent wards were always the simplest and uninspired of constructs. Bob worked and worked and Sam bled and bled. After he mindfully tended to the wound and made sure the broad chest was nicely patched in gauze, he offered Sam a drink one more time. The youngest Winchester drank the discount vodka straight from the bottle.
Bob snapped on a fresh pair of latex gloves and patted the empty dentist chair.
“Your turn, Dean.”
The elder of the hunters was much more reluctant to lay down. But he grit his teeth and did it like a good little solider. The nervous guy didn't even make a face at the sticky vinyl still slick with his brother's sweat. Bob took it easy on him at first just to lull his uneasy canvas into a false sense of security. But the moment Dean relaxed he really started putting his back into it. The hunter put up with the carnage like a champ until it got bad enough that he had to momentarily excuse himself.
To throw up.
“I used to park cars for a hotel,” Bob told Sam as they waited for Dean to come out of the bathroom. “And once I worked on an ostrich farm.”
Sam tried hard to make his smile and nod appear genuine, but he was distracted by the seeping wound on his chest. So recently etched there by the needle that no doubt the boy's stomach was probably a little queasy too. The tall lad peeled back the red soaked bandage to see what he expected to see.
Bob dazzled Sam's eyes one more time just to make sure his secrets stayed that way.
“Here he comes!” Bob clapped blood spattered hands. “Lookin' good!”
Dean emerged from the bathroom half the man he used to be. But only by volume. Bob assured him that his tat was in the home stretch now. Just some filler, a few touch ups and both of them could be bragging about their hard won ink at the bar across the street. It was easy to pretend not to notice the tear run down Dean's cheek towards the end. Bob felt it was respectful to keep his own eyes averted and on the job at hand like the professional he kind of was: Like a tax lawyer. Or an auditor. Maybe some kind of gynecologist.
When it was all completed Bob felt drained yet elated.
“I'd like you to take my business card,” he told the boys solemnly. “I'd like you to think of me if you ever require more work done.”
The Winchesters were both too shaken and anemic to refuse the small courtesy. The paper was hot pink and actually belonged to a pretty inked stripper that came in once a week to add flower petals to her rose garden. But the details on the tiny pieces of pulp were pure semantics.
Bob watched with pride as the cards were dutifully stuffed in wallets.
“You take it easy now,” he waved and waved even though they were walking the opposite way down the street. “And you take real good care of yourselves!”
Bob stretched his arms over his head and thought about sleep. Inflicting pain was a lot of hard work and he'd gotten up pretty early that morning to take the dog for a jog. But a purple-haired woman seated in the modest waiting area interrupted his thoughts. (The waiting area was just a folding chair by the door but you could see the manager's television from there if you leaned over a little.)
“Hey, hey mister,” she said. “I want what you gave those guys.”
He enjoyed how gravelly her words were. Each syllable dripping with nicotine and whiskey.
“Did you like those?” he asked proudly. “I was inspired by a combination of Tolkien folklore, lesbian symbolization and wiccan moon power fetishes.”
The cigarette between her lips swayed up and down as she nodded.
“It's righteous man,” she agreed. “So righteous.”
“Oh yeah,” Bob felt forced to add. “There's some demon possession protection in there too.”
“Snap,” she ground the butt between her teeth. “Is that shit extra?”
Bob smiled a smile as wide as the sky and bright as the sun.
“For you darlin'?” he winked. “I'll toss it in for free.”
*created by request by poet whom wishes to remain anon ♥
**Chibi-Inked Fan art! by urdsama
(for more of that spn chibi good stuff go check out the_dean_show♥)