Side Characters IX
THE TATTOO OF DORIAN GRAY
This was a fun little take on “The Picture of Dorian Gray”. After all if there is one thing people in Rural America love is Tattoos. It’s only natural that Brian runs into someone with a tattoo.
Brian pulled up to the house of a regular customer who he hoped wouldn’t be too drunk this time. He wasn’t a mean drunk but he did like to talk incoherently and Brian didn’t want to waste the time he could be with Amanda.
“Oh hey, Brian right?” The handsome young man answered the door, shirtless.
“Yup.” Brian smiled, the man was only slightly drunk so the transaction would go quickly. Brian held out the pizza, “$13.85”
“Okay.” The man reached into his pocket and brought out a ten and a five and handed them to Brian. This was the first time Brian ever saw the tattoo on the man’s arm. It was the ugliest tattoo Brian had ever seen, it was of a grizzled old man who the years hadn’t been kind too. Besides the wrinkles of age the tattooed image had the swollen nose of a long time alcoholic and the sunken eyes of a drug user.
“Interesting tattoo,” Brian said handing the man his pizza.
“Oh that.” The man laughed putting the pizzas on the table by the door, “It comes in handy. Watch this.”
Brian gasped as the man hit himself in the face as hard as he could. The punch landed right on his left eye, Brian wouldn’t be surprised if his eye swelled up so much that he wouldn’t be able to see out of it in the morning. Brian looked carefully to see if the man was all right but the eye wasn’t even red around the spot he hit himself.
“Look down.” The man grinned.
Brian looked down at the man’s forearm in astonishment as the tattooed image’s left eye was starting to swell up. Within seconds it had swelled shut.
“How???” Brian asked.
“It is really worth it to get the best tattoo artist around.” The man laughed.
“I can see that,” Brian said then remembered Amanda was waiting inside the car, “Well, you have a nice night, Mr. Gray.”
“Please, call me Dorian.”
From “AN EXTRA TOPPING OF HORROR”