He looks slightly uncertain. More like you that like himself. But he turns, he sweeps his hair over his shoulder; he exposes his back to you.
The wings sweep all the way down his back, shoulder to waist. Thick black swoops of ink on his fair skin, and you gasp, reach to touch - and the lines resolve further. They are not solid lines.
They are music.
You touch, gently, softly; you trace the notation, and he sighs, relaxes a bit into you. "Beautiful," you say.
He looks back; some of his hair slips back down over the tattoo and you fight the urge to push it away. "Why the wings? Or why the music?"
He faces forward again, away from you. Half-nude and exposed, but you cannot see his face. "It reminds me of home."
"They did this there? The tattoo?"
He laughs quietly. "No. But I had wings."
You still, and he looks back at you again. He takes your hand and places it on his shoulderblade, where the ink is thickest, an inch of pure black; he puts your hand there and you feel it, the twisted scar running diagonal that the ink covers. You would never see it. But he wants you to feel it. You touch his other shoulderblade; the same scar, slanting in. "What...?" Your voice is shaking.
"I had wings." Still quiet. He holds your gaze, and you realize that he is waiting for you to laugh, to scoff, to disbelieve. You won't.
"They took them?"
"I don't remember. Things - things got very bad, and I don't remember much for a while. When I came back, they were gone. When I came back, I had the scars."
[to be continued.]
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I confess that this one is not inspired by the piece, but instead I am just happy to have the piece to tie it into. greylistening can attest that Aaron has always had wings.
I just hope any of this is making sense to anyone!
Team Venture shoutout to Adrianne Brennan, also blogging for BARCC!