Authors: Cassie Alexander
With the Pack threatening Dark Ink Tattoo, Angela knows she needs to break up with her current lover before anyone – any were – can hurt him. But when an intimate dinner with him reveals he’s not a mild-mannered lawyer, she realizes he may just be the friend she needs.
Whereas Jack needs a friend to bleed if he’s going to solve a murder. Enter Paco, Jack’s long-time friend and erstwhile lover – whose gift with blood sets Jack hot on the Pack’s trail.
Dark Ink Tattoo is an erotic urban fantasy series, which will be comprised of ten 15,000 word pieces each with graphically detailed violence, and deliciously detailed sex. This particular episode contains a penetrating MM scene, and two extravagant displays of MF.
Dark Ink Tattoo
Dark Ink Tattoo - Episode 2
2016 by Erin Cashier. All rights reserved.
No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law. For permission requests, email
Publisher’s Note: This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are a product of the author’s imagination. Locales and public names are sometimes used for atmospheric purposes. Any resemblance to actual people, living or dead, or to businesses, companies, events, institutions, or locales is completely coincidental.
Cover Art by Kellie Dennis at Book Cover by Design www.bookcoverbydesign.co.uk
I sat down in a plastic chair on the other side of a bulletproof window and held a phone to my ear. “You wanted my attention. Well now you have it.”
Gray, my ex-boyfriend and my son Rabbit’s father, sat on the other side, holding his own phone to talk to me. “Hey baby,” he said, grinning broadly.
I waited there to see what he’d say next. I didn’t want to give him anything. They’d taken my coat, but I made sure what I was wearing showed neither curves nor skin. And my expression was flat. He was nothing to me. And there was nothing he could do to me, behind bars – which was where he was going to rot. Forever.
Except a month ago he’d started sending letters – and last night, he’d sent someone to bust the windows of the tattoo studio I owned, I was sure.
“You look tired,” he said. “Long night?”
There was a point in time when I would’ve thrilled at his concern. When I’d been eighteen, when I’d started running with the Pack, when I’d seen him – I knew I’d had to have him in that obsessed-teenager way. That my life wouldn’t be complete without him. He was six-four, broad-shoulders, Viking-arms, and – yeah, given my now-boyfriend Mark I clearly had a type.
But Mark was a lawyer, not a drug-dealing-murdering-son-of-a-bitch-behind-bars who I hated every day.
I crossed my legs and stared off into middle distance, ignoring him. I knew he hated that. As leader of the Pack, he expected utter loyalty – and with the exception of me, he’d mostly gotten it. Werewolves and bikers had an inherent sense of hierarchy.
“Angie,” he said, his voice just a croon, the husk of his wolf coming through. He knew what I had inside me, how much the wolf-part of me still wanted to please him.
“Don’t try,” I told him. “It won’t work.”
My wolf was a fickle bitch. Luckily I took silver every day, so that I was always the one in control. I’d learned it from the Pack – smuggled colloidal silver into prison was the only way Gray could stop from wolfing-out on moon-nights too.
He leaned back, surveying me. “I just wanted to see you again, Angie. That’s not a crime.”
“Breaking Dark Ink’s window is.”
“If I did that, it’s just petty vandalism. Plus I’d have I had my guys make sure no one was inside. All completely theoretically, of course.”
I gestured to myself. “Well, you’ve seen me now. I’m going to go –“ I hung up the receiver and brought my eyes up to stare at him blankly like he didn’t count.
He waited until I’d almost stood to ask, “How’s my son?” – I didn’t hear it, so much as I read his lips through the glass.
Blood rushed in my ears. If I could keep going, walk on out like I hadn’t heard him – but I’d waited half a second too long, and I knew he knew I had. I sank back into the chair, trying to appear indifferent, and when I picked the phone back up I made sure to say, “What?” in an incredulous tone.
Rabbit was the only good thing to come out of my time with the Pack. And when I’d gotten out, I wasn’t even late yet – and then he’d been born late, besides. There was no way they could know anything for sure, unless –
“I’m not stupid, Angie. He looks just like me. I have photos.”
Bile rose at the thought of some drug-running biker following my son around with a camera. “Rabbit isn’t yours. He’s mine and some other guy I fucked. I fucked a lot of guys after you. Still do.”
“Looking for a cock big enough to replace mine?”
“Hardly,” I laughed sharply. “Let’s just say that when you’re not a virgin, you have a lot of catching up to do – and that those experiences put earlier ones in… perspective.”
He was still looking at me with that trademark killer-grin. “I’d forgotten how feisty you were.”
“Did your masturbatory fantasies leave that out?”
Gray leaned forward. “I know you’re afraid of me, Angie. I can see it in your eyes. You don’t have to be.”
He’d left me alone for seven long years, until last month. Maybe he’d changed behind bars. Found Jesus, or Buddha, or whatever.
He put his hand up to the glass and tilted his head. “I just want to be a family again.”
And at that, I laughed loud and true. “Are you fucking kidding me?”
His eyes went cold, like a predator’s, and I remembered just how hard he could hit. “He’s not yours,” I repeated.
“Cut the crap, Angie – unless you want someone to help me get a DNA sample.”
I froze. I wasn’t sure what I was more scared of for Rabbit sake -- him finding out that he was a werewolf – or that he was related to Gray.
“Being in here,” he said, knocking on the glass between us, “has given me some perspective. I know now I never should’ve let you go.”
At that – all the anger and all the memories came rushing back. “Like you let Willa go? And all the girls before her? Fuck you, Gray,” I said low, this time with my own wolf’s voice, and watched him startle. “Fuck you. You knew she might die – that I might die – and you never said a word.”
He leaned forward on his side of the glass. “I didn’t need to say it. I wanted you to be my mate for life. I wouldn’t have knotted you otherwise.”
“That was supposed to make me feel special?” I forced myself laugh hollowly, to hurt him, even though there was no way I could ever hurt him the way he’d hurt me. “After you left – do you know what Wade did?” I swallowed down the stomach acid that rose as I remembered the night. I’d only come back to the bar for my tattoo guns – they were Dringenbergs, practically irreplaceable, as I didn’t have a penny to my name, and doing tats was the only way I could make any. And that was when Wade had stopped me. He just picked me up and carried me off to the back room, me screaming the whole time. “He took me. Carried me off to your room – our room – and threw me on the bed. Said he’d waited long enough, and it was finally his turn.”
Gray’s jaw tensed and his eyes narrowed, and I knew no matter how in control he was of the Pack that no one outside had ever had the balls to tell him this story. Or, none of them had ever though he would care – one of those two. I leaned in.
“I could hear the rest of them through the walls – so I knew they could hear me screaming. Trying to fight him off, kick him away. And when at the end – when I was covered in claw marks and bitten – when his knot finally flared and trapped me there, on him, him touching me, holding me for half-an-hour while he whispered apologies to me for what he claimed his wolf made him do, begging me to stay? I will die before that ever happens again.” I stood. “Maybe Rabbit is his -- but I know he’s not yours, and I’m definitely not your mate. Don’t ever contact me again.”
I dropped the phone and walked away.
“What’re you going to do when the moon calls him?” Gray shouted after me. I ignored him and kept walking.
I woke like I always did -- to the sound of scratching against my coffin.
I wasn’t in a coffin because I was a vampire – although I was -- I was in a coffin because I’d acquired a cat, and an EMT client of mine had once told me a horrible story. I kept Sugar well-fed, but when you died each day and shared the house with a carnivore, it paid to play it safe. I heard an inquisitive meow, and another scratch right by my head. Somehow, Sugar always knew when I was up.
“Shush,” I said, pushing back the lid of the plywood box I’d built for myself. Sugar jumped inside and rubbed her head on my hand, as I knuckled between her ears.
The only upshot of being a vampire was that I didn’t dream – I could never toss or turn at night, when I fell dead I stayed dead, until dawn. I could count the number of people that’d seen me dead on one hand, including Sugar, and I wanted to keep it that way.
But if I’d still been human I knew what I would’ve dreamed of – blood. Both to drink – and to see spilled. Whoever had killed Bella had to pay.
I reached for my phone with my free hand.
My first text was from Mattie, telling me a new window’d been successfully installed at Dark Ink – but that Angela had cancelled nightshifts until further notice. That was worrisome, as I still needed the income – but it proved that she was scared. I’d have to ask her why, but tonight off might be fortuitous, because my next text was a half hour old, from Paco.
I texted him back. Hopefully he hadn’t made other plans – but he knew the rules I played by.
Can I bring OJ?
Our code words for if I could bleed him. If I couldn’t I might have to make other plans – the kind of things I wanted to do tonight required blood.
Only if you bring Oreos,
he texted back
I smiled darkly at my phone.
Oreos were everyone’s favorite post-bleeding snack.
I sent back and sat up inside my coffin, already beginning to feel more alive.
* * *
I showered and drove out to Paco’s. He lived in a fancy mansion at the edge of town, one with an infinity pool and a view of the mountains. It wasn’t his, it was the magician he was monogamish’s with, but the magician left town pretty often – and the last time he’d done a tour on a cruise I’d pretty much moved in, Sugar and all.
I parked in the driveway and grabbed the Oreo’s I’d promised, walking up just as Paco opened the door.
“Jack,” he said, smiling at me. He was as tall as I was, wearing loose shorts and a tight white tee that showed off all his muscles. Every time I saw him I remembered the first time we’d met, when I’d lured him into a club’s bathroom to bleed, and wound up fucking him instead, both of us twined inside a tight stall, me pounding him as the dance music pounded the wall opposite. “How is it that we both have the same night off?”
“Don’t know, don’t care,” I said, dropping the cookies to the ground before reaching for him.
Our mouths met as I pressed him up against the wall of his entry way. My needs tonight were savage, stabbing me from the inside out. I leaned my whole body against his, running one hand up his shirt, using the other to twist the waistband of his shorts and pull him toward me, as my tongue pushed deeply into his mouth.
He shivered, a full body thing, not just due to the night air I’d brought inside with me. I knew he cared for me, and I for him, and yet every time we met I knew he couldn’t help but remember what I was – even if I’d promised I’d never bleed him without warning. I pulled back, biting on his lower lip, rocking my hips against him. “Sorry,” I apologized.
The corners of his lips quirked up into a warm smile. “Don’t be,” he said, and his hands reached for my waist.
Our hands were all over each others bodies – there was no place that Paco wasn’t perfect, I knew because I’d kissed them all before. In moments our clothes were tugged at, then off, and kicked aside, and we were stumbling naked, mauling one another. He pushed me towards the hallway toward the bedroom, but that was too far – I shoved him towards the living room.