Forever With You (Misfit Tattoo Book 1), page 1
Forever With You
Misfit Tattoo: Book One
By Jennifer Labelle
Forever With You
Copyright © 2019 by Jennifer Labelle.
All rights reserved.
First Print Edition: May 2019
Limitless Publishing, LLC
Kailua, HI 96734
Formatting: Limitless Publishing
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to locales, events, business establishments, or actual persons—living or dead—is entirely coincidental.
It’s amazing how a few simple words can change everything, isn’t it?
Many years ago, our family lost two people tragically, only months apart. We lost my mother first, then you lost your son. I guess I just wanted to let you know your kind words at Nanny’s funeral meant a lot. Losing my grandmother felt like losing a piece of my mother all over again, but this time, it was your story that helped me through it. It was nice to hear that I helped you cope with the loss of your son with only a few words, even all those years later.
An act of kindness can do wonders, and I thank you for sharing that with me.
“It takes a great deal of courage to see the world in all its tainted glory and still to love it.”
Table of Contents
~A misfit refers to a person who doesn’t quite fit into the social classes of today. They’re a strong-minded bunch of introverts who have few friends and tend to be misunderstood.~
Change sucked balls. He knew that first hand, and he had no choice in the matter. His life was a mess of old scars, distractions, and work. His old shop, Blank Canvas, was now Misfit Tattoo, thanks to that fucking fire that destroyed his life and his love. The one night that was supposed to be one of the happiest in his life was now nothing but a nightmare he’d never, ever forget. God only knew he’d tried time and time again. If only he could go back, get a do-over.
Toby James stood outside in the empty car lot beside the new and improved version of the shop he owned and ran his fingers through his hair as the memories came crashing back to him once more.
Eighteen months earlier…
As soon as she entered the shop, Toby began to serenade her with Christmas songs. He was in such a good mood and couldn’t wait to get their night started.
“Okay, okay, just please stop.” Carley giggled. “And please, for the love of God, don’t quit your day job.”
His beautiful girlfriend had shown up at Blank Canvas afterhours as he’d instructed her to do to finally get the piercings she kept talking about but never had the guts to go through with.
Tonight, she’d be leaving with two brand new nipple piercings to go along with her nose ring and eyebrow ring.
Most importantly, she was also there to receive the surprise he refused to give her any hint about, and if all went according to plan, it’d be fucking epic.
She approached the back door and knocked, only to be pulled in right away and twirled around in his embrace, as he sang to her. It was the type of pussy romance shit he teased the guys about all the time, but he couldn’t care less. She was his world.
“Come on, Carley, where’s your spirit?” Toby asked.
“You’re adorable.” She smiled.
“Uh-huh. Before the night is through, we’ll have five golden rings on you. Are you ready?”
“As much as I’ll ever be, and I’m pretty sure you meant to say four.”
“I know what I said.” Toby stood back, slipped his hands from around her waist, and held her hand as he led the way to the front of the store. The curtains were drawn, the closed sign was flipped on the door, and it smelled a little like antiseptic. His home sweet home, away from home.
He led her to her very own chair and stepped between her legs as she sat. Cupping the sides of her face tenderly, he bent over to capture her mouth against his. His soft, plump lips coaxed Carley’s own to open. His teeth nipped at her bottom lip and sucked on it before his tongue sought entry, and it made her moan and squirm for him.
Her hands slid up his chest to the nape of his neck, her fingers slid through his soft, silky hair, and she tilted her head to the side even more to enjoy the wet, silky warmth of his tongue as it moved against her own. His cock swelled and pressed up against her chest, rock hard and aching, and his hips instinctively moved, allowing her to feel how she affected him. Toby moaned; he couldn’t get enough of her. This chick did things to him that no other could or ever would. They clicked. Two kindred spirits joined, but there was a job to do. He pulled back from the kiss, pressed his forehead against hers, and groaned. “As much as I want to continue—” He rubbed his lower half against her again. “We should get these piercings done before it gets too late. I’ve got plans for the two of us. Rain check on the make-out session?”
“That depends. Do these plans include continuing what you just started?” She pouted. “I’m aching over here.” Her hands left him to trail along her chest. She cupped each breast and trailed one of her hands lower again. Teasing him, she spread her legs while he stood there captivated and drooling and rubbed herself in between them.
“Fuck! Take off your shirt.” Toby growled, “Bra too, babe.” He turned away from her momentarily to set up and calm himself down. There was a time and place for everything, and as much as he’d like to slide into that warm tight pussy right then and there, he had a couple of piercings to do and some things to get off his chest first. Then he’d be glad to give her anything she desired. He loved tasting her, exploring her body, and fucking her. Hell, if all went according to plan, he’d be able to do so for a lifetime.
“Yes, sir!” He smirked when she saluted him.
They’d met three years earlier in the very same spot she was in right then. Only she’d come in to get her very first tattoo at the time. She’d been too chicken shit to get anything large and opted for a small, blue butterfly on her left shoulder. There was an instant attraction, and she was so easy to be around that when he asked her out, her answer was an instant yes, and the rest was history.
“Now it’s showtime.” Toby slowly applied an alcohol swab against each nipple and smiled when they hardened for him. Next, he grabbed a marker to mark the spot where the hole was going to go so the entry and exit holes aligned properly at the base of the nipple.
“Um, what the heck is that?” She stiffened as he reached over to grab the tool he was about to pierce her with. It sort of resembled a clamp.
“Relax, baby. It’s just a device we use to hold the tissue firmly together. We’ve got to line up the two dots I just marked on you as closely together as possible. It should only be another minute, and we’ll move on to the next one.” He winked. “You good?”
She nodded and continued to bite her lip while eyeing the needle closely.
Before she knew it, the clamp was being removed, the needle went through, the loop was in, and her eyes shot wide. She hissed when it went through. There was a slight discomfort, but she took it like a champ. What took mere seconds felt like minutes, and he started on the second one.
“It stung for a minute, but these are actually quite nice.” She took a few minutes to compose herself when both breasts were done and then stood in front of the floor-length mirror to have a look at her new body bling.
Toby watched her admire his work, stepped up behind her, and wrapped his arms around her midsection. “They’re looking hot, babe. Then again, your tits were always pretty spectacular.”
She leaned back and giggled as he dipped his head down to press his lips at the side of her neck before slowly moving them back up against her earlobe to whisper, “They’ll be sore for a few days, but after that, I can’t wait to show you how good they’ll feel. I love that you came to me for this.” He sucked her lobe inside of his mouth and looked up again to admire her. “Make sure your hands are clean when you handle the piercings and apply a good amount of soap on your nipples and on the jewelry, washing them off with warm water a few times a day to keep the area clean.”
“Will do.” She smiled and finally turned into his arms to face him directly. “Now, I believe you were saying you had plans for the two of us tonight. Please tell me we don’t have to go far because, sore or not, I still want to continue what we started earlier, and I want to keep my shirt off for a while.”
“Now that I can oblige.” He laughed. “Follow me.” Toby led her into his office.
It was show time.
He walked ahead to his desk, took a deep breath, and pulled the ring out of the top drawer. This was it, the official start to their forever. He walked back around the desk to a speechless Carley and lowered himself on bended knee before her. The room was dimly lit by candles he had sparked just before she arrived, and it was about as romantic as it was going to get, simple but sweet. He gulped nervously, and she surprised him by singing out, “Five golden ri—inngs,” with a smile. It made the moment that much more perfect, that much more memorable.
He got up to stand in front of her instead because fuck tradition and lightly touched each ring, starting with her eyebrow, her nose, and then lightly caressing each nipple piercing. He then held up the last one reserved for her finger. “Carley, I love you, baby. Will you please marry me?”
“Yes,” she cried as she jumped into his arms with delight. “I love you so much.”
“Me, too. Merry Christmas, honey,” Toby whispered, and he slipped the ring on her finger.
Lifting her into his arms, he carried her over to his very comfortable sofa and fulfilled his earlier promise to show her how much she was loved by making love.
The images burned into his mind like an instant replay. Every pleasure-filled moment now etched into one painful memory, because what was supposed to be the beginning of a happy life with the one person who made him feel whole turned out to be the end of it all.
His perfect fucking night became an introduction to his own personal hell. It made him wonder why he had to light those stupid candles instead of keeping the lights on? And why was he batshit enough to fall asleep before making sure they were all blown out first? But, most of all, why had he survived, and she hadn’t?
A little while later, sweat poured down his brow, his breathing was laboured, and he woke up disoriented, naked, and weak.
Tired, so fucking tired.
Toby’s eyes opened and closed a few times before he got his second wind. The sweet smell of Carley was gone and was replaced by the stench of something burning. Hot, why was it so hot in here? Orange lights flickered back and forth between a thick, black shield of—Holy shit! Was that smoke?
“Carley?” he croaked and coughed. “Carley, honey, wake up.”
There was no response, so he nudged her. “Baby, we’ve got to get out of here.” He shifted upright to try and get her moving, but all it did was force her to roll onto the floor. His beautiful angel wasn’t moving, and he could feel himself being pulled under the moment he finished retching up a lung, but he refused to give up. All that mattered was getting the two of them out of there, like, five minutes ago. What felt like an eternity was probably mere seconds, a minute tops, when he rolled himself off the couch and onto the ground. He managed to stay low as he dragged the two of them out of his scorching office and into a slightly cooler area of the shop before it all went black again.
Toby squeezed his eyes shut and shivered as he thought about it, because the next time he woke up that night, cool air hit his face. He was able to breathe a little better thanks to the oxygen mask strapped to his face. But Carley was gone. Just like that, taken away in death.
Sirens flared in the background as they rushed him to the emergency room, and to this day, his stomach dropped every time he heard the noise of an ambulance drive by. Her loss was worse than the burns he’d endured trying to save them, and the scars, both physical and emotional, were a constant reminder that love was for suckers, and the hurt just wasn’t worth the risk a second time around.
Love, commitment, and happily ever afters? Fuck that shit!
He was no fool. Only the good die young, and, well, he’d made damn sure Heaven was going to wait a long time for him ever since. Between the booze, the line-up of women to keep his bed warm, and getting his new shop up and running, he kept busy and, better yet, distracted.
“Hey, man. Are you okay?” Carson, one of his best artists, and an even greater friend, asked as he approached, bringing Toby back to the present.
“Yeah,” he said. “Just need to unwind, I think.” He ran his fingers through his hair again and took a deep breath. “It’s good to see business is booming already, huh?” He needed a subject change to steer clear of this emotional shit going on inside of him, and there was no better subject than Misfit to break the ice.
The tattoo parlor’s grand re-opening was three months ago, and they’d been booked solid ever since. The new place outshone the old one, and his heart hurt because he still wished Carley was there to share in the success with him.
Fuck! Pull it together, man!
“Damn right. The world-wide attention doesn’t hurt, either.” Carson snorted.
Before the fire, Blank Canvas had hit the big-time, and so had Toby and his team, thanks to Minnesota Ink and Metal, an up-and-coming TV show about alternative lifestyles. Reality TV was at an all-time high, and he figured, why not milk that shit while he could? It was all thanks to his cousin. Ash was the lead singer of the popular rock band Love the Sinner, and he only went to them for ink whenever he got the itch for more art. Word spread after one MTV interview where the host had mentioned wanting body art of his own, and good ol’ cousin Ash had put them up on the map by endorsing them to the world. It wasn’t long after that the show began.
His life shifted quickly in a different direction. After Blank Canvas burned to the ground, he’d made some big changes: a new shop, a new name, and a new him. He’d crawled out from the gutter of grief and re-invented his life.
He loved what he did, period.
“You’re fucking right, it doesn’t.” Toby smirked. “Busy days, good coin, and an endless supply of numbers to keep me company during the night.”
“Speaking of pussy,” Carson chuckled, “I’m heading over to Fanny’s for a bite and a couple drinks to unwind. You coming with?”
Fanny’s was a local pub down the road. It was close enough to walk over. It was cozy, the beer was cheap, and the owner used to be an old neighbor, so he liked to help keep them in business. It hadn’t hurt that Fanny herself was like a second mother to him, either. “Why not?” He shrugged. “I could use a couple drinks.” Truth was he needed them. He was still having trouble sleeping. It’d been almost two years since his loss, and every time he closed his eyes, Carley’s lifeless image still haunted him. If only he’d died with her that horrible night, maybe he’d be at peace. He shook his head. It wasn’t that he was suicidal, per se. He was just tired as fuck. His brain didn’t have an off switch, and he needed a little something to numb the memories. “The women? We’ll see how it goes.”
“Whatever you say, bro.” His friend chuckled and led the way.
The pub looked like a local hole-in-the-wall from the outside in, but it was so much more, and it wasn’t just because he was biased to it, either. It was just the way it was. Anyone who walked through the door came back again. Fanny’s was notorious for its great food, cheap drinks, and hospitality. The moment he sat his ass down, he felt like he was home.
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