Chapter Extract from First Draft

Jerry sat in the chair and waited for the man to come over with the needle. The room was covered with art work of dragons, Chinese symbols of mythology and girls etched in different characters. From each year since Jack was born, Jerry obtained another tattoo.

He had twelve, all over his body. None of them could be seen without him bearing skin. His brother hated them, branded him as common for succumbing to the clique that he had managed to avoid. However Jerry was an addict. His hair-line had been receding for a while and he loathed that every time he looked in the mirror, an old man was staring back. His face was rough from the years of working outside and lugging around heavy loads. He also laid blame on his sister-in-law and nephew. They caused him no end of hassle, the stress was hard to bear and there were times when his temper got the better of him. He knew he had to control his urges but it was becoming more difficult.

Since Jerry could remember, the anger had always been with him. It was unexplained and irrational. The violence that had gone alongside it seemed as natural as eating and breathing. He wanted to hate himself but he didn’t. There was no remorse nor was there any pride. It was just what he did. When he was ten years old he remembered beating up a bully in the playground who had singled out Bill. His brother would come home in tears, unable to defend himself. Their mother vowed to go into school and sort it out. However Jerry had sorted it before she had the chance and the lad never bothered Bill again. In fact he never bothered anyone, too afraid to be in the same room as Jerry.

He looked at Jack sometimes and saw Bill in him. Jerry did think a lot of Jack, to say that he loved him would be too much, but he was certainly fond of him. At the same time he saw him as a liability. Even though he had taught him a lesson for his snooping, Jerry was worried that unlike his father, Jack was clever. His mind was always ticking, always thinking about what was going on around him. His morals led the way he acted in life and although he was weak, he was not malleable and easy intimidated. Jerry feared that one day, Jack would turn his back on the family and turn them in. He would certainly have a lot to say which is why he had to keep a very close eye on him at all times.

“What we having this time Jerry” asked the burly looking man, arms covered in tattoos and ears full of studs
“A scorpion” Jerry handed him the picture he had sketched himself “Got a spare patch on my back, think it could go there”
The man nodded and studied the picture “No problem”
Jerry could feel the ink penetrate his skin and he breathed a sigh of relief. As the needle went in, the evil flowed out and for a few hours he felt no anger.


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