The sky was a blank white, then all of a sudden it was flooded with colour as deep sunset oranges and hues of pink dripped over the empty landscape in smooth circular motions creating an sphere of colour central to the scene. The immediately bold colours of the watercolours faded into the background of the sky as a wash of blue spilled into the horizon, movement as the colours mix to first become a colourless grey and then as if by some miracle become a stunning sky blue. Stripes of deep crimson and royal red began to scrape across the skyline but before they met their target they were pulled into the blue wash by a flood of spilling water and the whole canvas became an image of deep purple.
Carrie yelled chucking the canvas at the stone wall opposite her.
"I give up! I am an artist, I want to be using real paints not diluted pigments stolen from whatever factory you can get your grubby hands into Nathan!"
The boy, Nathan, who sat on a stool across from her on the other side of the sparsely furnished concrete room let out a small giggle tossing his hair to one side of his pale face before turning back to face the debris of art supplies and works of 'creative genius' in progress. Carrie picked the canvas up again chucking it gently towards Nathan scowling playfully.
"Oh, well I'm so glad you can laugh about this Nathan. But If I don't create something soon I might just go insane! At least let me do some more work on your back today."
He already knew there was no use trying to fight her, when Carrie decided something it was almost certainly going to happen or there would be hell to pay. He lifted his shirt, wincing slightly as it got caught on a large cut which ran horizontally across his left ribcage.
"How did you do that this time?"
Came the instinctively caring and worried response of Carrie, she walked towards him tutting and took a closer look, making a mental note to start keeping first aid supplies on her at all times. She directed him to the metal table in the center of the grey stone room and had him lie on his front, resting his head of shocking turquoise hair on a cushion. Turning away from the make-shift tattoo parlour bed she grabbed hold of a black case and clicked it open pulling out the tattoo pen which she had been using for the past year and a half before turning back to Nathan and launching straight back to work where she had previously left off.
Tattoos covered a large surface of Nathan's body and the designs all followed a similar theme, they were clearly all designs by the same hand and Carrie had spent hours meticulously envisioning, designing and then creating each and every tattoo ensuring that the finished piece was exactly how she wanted it and that each of the individual pieces fitted neatly together as a whole on Nathan's porcelain white skin. On his back, the largest piece thus far, was the outline of a crown surrounded by the brambles and twisting thorns of the roses which adorned the rest of his body.
A black rose was splayed across the bottom right of his throat and it's winding stem and the thorns jutting from it's tendrils spread down his torso, around his back and down his left arm where they culminated in a spiraling dark sleeve and the design of an ornate knife.
As Carrie worked Nathan explained what had happened that day and how he had managed to rip chunks out of his chest, the sort of injury that Carrie had become accustomed to him getting but that didn't stop her worrying.
"I took my radio up to the cable tower, I wanted to see if I could get in touch with James and get some more work but they've changed the patrol schedule and I had to tumble so I wouldn't get seen. I got away in time but got the scar to prove it too, had a bit of a fall. Nothing serious. Just needs some time to heal."
He recounted the story at speed, not going into detail and hastening to reassure her at every possible opportunity. She knew there was more than he was letting on but knew better than to ask, he knew she guessed there was more and knew better than to assume she took what he said at face value.
"At least you're safe, that's what counts."
She said, meaning every word, and continuing her work as she slowly etched the detail into the crown on his back.
"I could kiss you."
He replied, laughing his warm, deep laugh without moving a single muscle.
"I don't think Kayden would be so happy about that."
Carrie giggled and ran a hand through her short deep brown hair. He turned his head around to face her watching her arm as it glided expertly along his back filling in the intricate pattern and artistic details of the crown that was slowly taking shape on his back.
"Kayden's the least of your worries, if you get too close you might catch my gay, then where would that leave you and lover boy, eh?"
Nathan chuckled, as he watched her sigh, a flowing calm sigh that mimicked the gentle flood of the watercolours on canvas.
"For the last time, Nathan Jameson Hart, I am not with Aaron. That irritating half-wit thorn in my side would like to believe otherwise, but I say let him. I am not about to waste my time getting asked his incessantly annoying questions any more than I already do."
Carrie worked with delicate accuracy, following the curves and ridges of the design that she could she clearly in her mind's eye. They made occasional conversation and the banter between the two went back and forth as the design began to take shape and the dark swirls and jagged cutting ridges of the crown became clear dark lines on Nathan's back.