That can't be true.
I put the cleaning equipment away and found Ed in his office.
"Good job today Angel. Be here tomorrow at the same time." For a quick second I thought I saw a small smile.
"Thanks Ed, see you tomorrow morning."
He tipped his head to me and I left his office. I made sure everything was clean then left the shop.
While I was in the shower that night a big feeling of happiness came over me. I felt like this job was what I've been needing. Tonight I saw Ed actually lightening up to me being there. I need to work harder on my art so he can see that I actually want to learn. Yeah, that's it. I'll take Chris's advice and draw every single day now. Working harder than the day before.
I've been working at Skin & Ink now for two weeks and it's been great. I help maintain the shop, like keeping it clean changing up the designs on the windows, I also sometimes help some customers find a tattoo that they like and unload the trucks that come on the first of the month. I was really happy with my job.
Chris was glad to hear I took his advice on drawing every day. He even helped me in the shop some days when there were no customers. I would bring my sketchbook and he'd give me tips on my drawings such as line technique, shading values, and perspectives. I actually saw some improvements after these two weeks.
Ed well, he was opening up little by little around me. He only talked to me when he had something for me to do, but his tone changed since I started working here. I know looked forward to hearing him tell me what to do. His voice could make me melt if I wasn't at work. I was crushing on my boss big time. He often came to the shop running a bit late with only a muscle shirt on. He would rush to shop from across town to find me waiting with Chris in front of the shop. I discretely checked him out on those days so I wouldn't get caught and get the shit beat out of me. I just tried to focus on the shop so my mind wouldn't drift to Ed.
Today Chris told me he would let me use a tattoo gun to practice on a design that I've been working on. I was looking forward to it because I have no former experience with a tattoo gun. While thinking it over I was mopping up the floors in the small restroom when Chris came in.
"Hey Angel, ready to work with the gun?"
"Yea, just give me a minute to finish up."
"Cool, I'll be in Ed's office. Come get me when your done."
I finished up and put away the mop. I went to the back of the shop to empty the water in the mop bucket when I saw three kids tagging on the back of the shops wall. They looked like they were in highschool.
"Hey!" I ran towards them expecting them to run off but only two of them did.
The one that stood his ground braced himself. I hesitated and the kid took his chance. He slugged me right on my nose. I fell to the ground holding my nose as I felt waves of pain and the warmth of blood on my hands.
"Hey!" Ed's voiced boomed.
The kids ran off then and Ed came to me. He gently grabbed my arm and helped me up.
"Ed those kids were-,"
"I know Angel, let's go to my office."
"Don't you wanna get them?" I winced from the pain.
"Don't talk Angel. Your nose might be broken."
He took me to his office and sat me down. He took my hands off my nose and replaced It with a clean rag.
"Hold it with some pressure."
Chris walked in then and saw what happened.
"Holy shit Angel. You okay?" His eyebrows furrowed showing concern.
"Yea I'm- I'm oka-y." For some reason whenever people where around when I was close to tears it just pushes me over the edge. Especially when they talk to me about it. Chris asking me that had me close to shedding tears.
"Chris go check the security cameras to see if you can see their faces." Ed told him.
"Alright." He left the office.
I took a deep breath trying to get myself to calm down. Ed pulled up a chair in front of me and sat down facing me.
"Let me see it Angel." His voice was deep, low, and concerned.
I slowly moved the rag away and Ed checked out my nose.