Blake is nervous as fuck. She doesn’t remember being this nervous since actually taking her application exam for Beacon Academy, to become a huntress.
She’s standing in front of the tattoo parlour, peering inside. The window reads “Sting Art” in big letters.
“Right, let’s get to it.” she murmurs to herself. Blake is about to set foot inside, when suddenly the door next to the entrance opens. A girl with golden-blonde hair stands in the doorway and casually lights a cigarette.
Blake just stares at her, feeling her heart skip a beat.
That’s her. Like literally her.
Blake stands nailed to the ground as she watches the girl puff some smoke out and take a drag again. The blonde hasn’t noticed Blake standing there yet.
Maybe this isn't a good idea. Maybe I should split.
She can hear Sun in her head saying “Let me guess you ran away again? What a surprise.”
Blake has lost all track of time since Yang appeared before her, but her window to back out has passed, as Yang notices her. Blake’s breath hitches and their eyes lock. Then a bright smile appears on Yang’s face.
“Hey there, gorgeous.”
Blake actually thinks about looking around her, making sure Yang is talking to her. As if the beautiful lilac eyes boring into hers weren’t a clear sign already.
“Hi.‘ she replies, rather shyly.
“What a surprise seeing you here.”
“I actually do come here often for a drink.” She points at the coffee shop across the street. Blake decides it’s best not to mention how often she also just sits there spying on Yang while she’s working.
“So, you gonna invite me for a drink then?” Yang replies with a smirk and a wink.
Blake is still in awe as she can’t believe this is happening. She’s actually talking to Yang and Yang is blatantly flirting with her. She finally finds her voice again.
“Actually, I came to get a tattoo done.”
Yang's eyebrows shoot up as she exhales the smoke to the side, making sure she doesn’t blow it in Blake’s face.
“Really? I didn’t peg you for the tattoo type. At least not in class.”
“Well, what did you peg me for?”
Blake isn’t sure where her retort came from, but she knows it couldn't have possibly come from her own mouth. Because her brains have stopped working the moment Yang layed eyes on her. Yang’s smugness is replaced by surprise, so it must be working.
“I guess the quiet philosophy type.”
“Well, you’re not entirely wrong. I can be multiple things, you know.”
Yang quickly finishes her cigarette and closes the backdoor, proceeding to enter the parlour together with Blake. They stand in the doorway when Yang continues to speak.
“So have you come up with a design?”
Blake hesitates. “Yes I have… Don’t I need an appointment?”
“Oh that’s ok, I’m not really busy today anyway, and I had a few cancellations as well. I can squeeze you in right now if you want.”
No turning back now, Belladonna.
“Cool, give me just a minute.”
Blake waits outside when Yang goes in. There’s an older brunette woman standing behind the counter and Yang walks straight to her. Blake notices three people sitting in the waiting area.
She can’t make out what they’re saying but the woman doesn’t appear all too happy with Yang's announcement as she waves her hand annoyed at her and Yang waves back just as annoyed. She comes back outside and smiles at Blake.
“Alright, all ready. Let’s get to it.”
“Wait, are you sure you’re not booked full? I can come back another time.”
“Oh no way, it’s actually a rather easy day today, so you better do it now. Plus, less time to consider chickening out.” She finishes her sentence with an elbow poke in her side and the contact makes Blake scream internally.
When they walk in, the older woman smiles politely at her.
She seems nice.
Yang walks past the chair in the general area, with the inking machine and opens another door for Blake.
“Aren’t we gonna do it here?” Blake gestures to the seat in the general area.
“Well, yeah we can, but I figured, and it’s just my hunch, it's your first tattoo and you look kinda nervous.”
She wants to mentally kick herself for being so obvious.
“So I figured it’s best if we do it behind closed doors.” Yang’s voice turns into a whisper as she continues. “Also, I wanna save you the embarrassment of people watching when I have to pin you down.”
Blake isn’t sure what it was: the delivery of the line, the all too clear innuendo to go with it, the fact that the smug face matched all of it or just everything about Yang she had been crushing on for the past years.
Blake just stands there speechless, not moving an inch.
Yang’s confident expression makes way for a worried look. “Blake, that was just a joke. It will be ok. The pain is mostly from the fear in your head.”
“Right.” is all Blake can manage. She somehow finds her feet working again and goes through the door Yang holds open for her.
There’s a chair and inking machine similar to the one in the general area and Yang motions her to hang her jacket up.
She sits down and shows Yang her design on her phone.
It’s a giant belladonna flower (ironic, she knows). The bottom part has an effect that makes it appear from a shadow. It took her hours to get it right.
“Looks good, I can work with that. Where do you want it?”
Blake looks at her for a second. Suddenly she realizes they are sitting very close, so close she could see her lilac eyes darken.
Without saying another word, she points to her left side. Yang follows her hands tracing up from her side to the bottom of her ribcage. Blake notices Yang’s eyes linger a little too long on the spot at her ribs and Blake is sure her own face is on fire at this point. Before Yang gets up and turns around, she swears she saw a blush creep up on her face too.
No. No way. She must’ve imagined it.
“Alright, I’ll need you to take off the bra. The shirt you can keep on, and we’ll see if I can work with it like that. You can change behind the screen. I’ll take your design from your phone and print it out. Then I’ll place it on your side and you can decide if it’s good like that.”
Yang speaks with her back turned, so Blake can’t read her face.
She goes behind the screen and takes her shirt off, removing her bra in the process. She puts the shirt back on and decides she wants to wait until her nipples stop doing the thing. She is planning on staying there, but suddenly Yang speaks.
“Ready whenever you are.”
The black tank top shows some of it, but Yang is apparently polite enough not to stare.
Blake still wants to shoot herself.
Of course she won’t stare. She probably puts tattoos on private areas like 10 times a day. She’s seen enough boobs in her life. She’s a professional.
“Go lay down and I’ll apply the outline.” Blake nods and lays down on her right side trying to get comfortable. Yang rolls towards her on a desk chair.
“You'll have to show me exactly where you want it. I will say the ribs will hurt the most. But I’ll take it easy on you, since it’s your first time.”
The smirk is back, but for whatever reason, Blake feels herself relax then.
She slowly pulls the side of her shirt up, painfully aware how Yang is watching her every move intensely.
She stops just under her boob and points towards her lowest rib and down her side.
“Alright, hold your arm like this, above your head.”
For the smug and confident appearance, Yang is surprisingly gentle and sweet with her; cautiously lifting up her arm and placing it above her head. She waits for Blake to get comfortable and starts putting the outline on her skin.
As soon as Yang touches her though, she hisses at the contact, as if she got burnt and she wants to smack herself to another dimension for giving away that it is in fact a sensitive spot.
“Whoa. Easy there tiger. We haven’t even started yet.”
Great. She thinks I’m a total wimp.
“Shouldn’t I be telling you to go easy on me?” Blake retorts.
Yang just smiles as she continues placing the outline.
She scoots closer to Blake and Blake can smell the scent of her perfume getting stronger, radiating off her and it makes Blake want to drown in it. Yang focuses on the print and the expression on her face is tense. Blake just now realizes she actually looks a lot like the older woman standing at the counter.
Her side tickles like fuck, but Blake has the willpower of a bee in mating season and she bites her lips to get through it.
By the time Yang finishes, she has basically memorized all the lines on Yang’s face.
“All finished. See for yourself. This is what it’s gonna look like.”
Yang grabs a small mirror and holds it up before Blake.
She can see the amazing outline printed on her skin of the tattoo she had been wanting to get for ages. Blake then notices Yang has added some extra effects at the top with a sharpie
When did she do that?
The belladonna flower fades in the shadows at the bottom and at the top there is an ember-like effect, as if it's on fire. Blake loves it.
She is also aware that her nipple is like an inch off from showing. She blushes at the thought and puts the mirror away.
“Yang, it’s perfect.” Blake bites her lip. “How much will it hurt?”
Yang sees the anxiety in her eyes and Blake expects her to give a snappy reply. Instead, Yang gets closer to her, her eyes go soft and it makes Blake want to drown in them.
“Not much." she says, reassuringly. "It’s just the small part on your rib cage that will be stingy. But I will go slow and if you feel like you can’t handle it, we will take a break. Just be careful with sudden movements.”
“Alright, let’s do it.”
Yang smiles and gives her a thumbs up.
Blake didn’t expect the needle to feel like a faint buzzing on her skin. Yang makes sure Blake gets used to the feeling first before zoning out and going over the outline of the design. The concentrated expression makes her look even hotter and Blake just focuses on Yang for the better part of the tattooing.
After a while, Yang stops and finally looks up at her again.
“This part will hurt a little. Just keep breathing in and out and try to stay still. If it gets too much, just tell me to stop ok. But make sure you don’t jerk away or make any sudden movements.”
Yang continues where she left off and goes upwards. Blake feels a clear difference as she moves up. Where it felt like a faint buzzing on her skin before, it now feels like a continuous sting, which seems to be getting more intense.
Blake wants to say “Stop” but changes her mind. She doesn’t want Yang to think she can’t handle one tattooed rib. So instead, she takes a deep breath and exhales, slowly.
Yang, still as focused as ever, just murmurs “Good girl” and continues going. Blake then freezes and holds her breath.
She feels her whole body warm up a few degrees and kind of just shut down. Yang doesn't seem fazed by it, aside from the slight twitch in her eyebrow and just keeps going. Blake wonders how many times she’s said that to her customers. She also wonders how much longer she can be in such a close vicinity to Yang before she will finally faint.
Blake’s senses return somewhat and she’s suddenly painfully aware how Yang’s gloved palm rests just under her boob and the pressure of it makes her want to collapse in the chair.
She feels the needle moving to the top part of her rib; she knows she’s almost done. Blake keeps biting her lip and scrunching her nose from the discomfort she is feeling. Yang ruffles with her shirt a little and Blake starts to move her other arm to pull it up more, when Yang stops her with her free hand.
“No, don’t move.” she says in a low voice.
Blake stops moving and just lays there in the most awkward position ever; her one hand pinned to her body by Yang and her other arm over her head. She can feel Yang’s palm brushing over her boob through the shirt and she wants to revel in the touch, she wants Yang to push the offending fabric up and just-
“Alright. All done.”
Blake has to blink, once, twice, maybe five times to get herself back into reality and realizes Yang has moved back in her chair, only now sensing the cold of where she had rested her warm hands.
“Let me just patch it up. You did pretty good, princess.”
She gives Blake the mirror again and Blake watches the beautifully drawn tattoo on her side, making all her regrets and lingering anxiety disappear. The modification done by Yang came out even better than expected. Blake turns her head, wanting to compliment Yang on her crafty work, when her words die in her throat.
Yang’s face is inches away from hers, coming closer still, and Blake stares at her for the longest time, trying to process what is happening.
Is she about to-
Yang is moving closer to her, to her face . She can smell her perfume getting thicker in her nostrils and, damn , did she smell good. Yang licks her lips and Blake licks hers and she moves her head, to meet Yang’s lips- only for Yang to brush past her face and reach for something above her head.
Their faces are inches apart and Yang looks down, only now realizing how close they are and she doesn’t move for a good few seconds. After what seems like forever, she suddenly jerks away, grabbing a patch along.
Blake wants to die, but the obvious redness on Yang's face evens her shame a little.
“Sorry.” Yang says. Her cool girl facade is replaced by only shyness now.
“Just had to get this for you.” Yang stammers. She holds the patch up close to her face, as if it will cover it. She nervously ruffles her gloveless hand through her hair.
“No my bad, I...” but Blake didn’t know what to say. She was 100% sure they were about to kiss, and she wasn't the only one who thought that.
They stay silent and Yang moves towards her again and she places the patch on Blake's side. It stings a little, but all that’s left after is a warmth on her skin, like she had burned herself there. Yang seems to have gotten back some of her composure, but she is struggling to find her words.
“Yeah, so, uhm. No water. I mean swimming. So no swimming. Make sure you keep it dry in the shower. And, stuff. Oh. No bath. Uh and yeah. The patch. Replace it like after 2 hours and then put a fresh one on again. And then just remove it afterwards.”
Yang almost knocks over her vials of ink in the process, giving an embarrassed oops while trying to put them back. She scrapes her throat. “I’ll give you the brochure at the counter for the rest of the instructions.”
Blake can’t help but laugh fondly at her. Her crush is in reality an actual dork and it just makes Yang more attractive to her. The blonde clears her throat again before speaking.
“I don’t recommend wearing a bra the coming few days. You can though, if you’re hardcore.”
And the cool girl is back, complete with a wink, but Blake knows better now.
“Sure thing, cowboy.”
Yang takes her glove off and helps Blake get up from the chair. Standing again so dangerously close to her, all of a sudden Blake feels confidence wash over her. Surviving her first tattoo, put on her by none other than her crush, makes her feel invincible. She looks up into Yang’s eyes and gives her a smug smile before speaking.
“So, how about that drink across the street?”
Yangs ruffles a hand through her hair again, a nervous habit, Blake now knows. “Definitely.”
“Great, I’ll pick you up in the afternoon.” the brunette says with a wink and they head to the counter.
*** Bonus ***
Yang charges Blake for the tattoo and they wave goodbye as she leaves the parlour.
She still can’t believe that she just tattooed Blake Belladonna, the girl she has been crushing on ever since she set foot in Beacon Academy. Yang knows she wanted to get tattooed for months; Ruby had told her the first time Blake had mentioned it. She even thought about going over to the coffee shop across the street, where she sees Blake sitting almost everyday, to start a conversation about it.
She starts blushing thinking about how close they were to accidentally kissing each other. Maybe she should’ve just let it happen.
Yang is still swooning when she suddenly feels a hand on her shoulder.
“So, Romeyang , hope it was worth it, standing your regulars up for that girl.”
Yang swats the hand away and gives the older woman an annoyed look, when Raven continues to speak.
“You know, I could’ve embarrassed you really bad when you begged me to take your customers last minute so you could go and tattoo that girl.”
“Please mom, you had all those cancellations, you easily fit them in.” Yang says, rolling her eyes at her.
“I did, after explaining to all of them you put your girlfriends first.”
“Mom, she's not my girlfriend.”
A smirk appears on her face. As if Raven can read her thoughts, she chimes in.
“Well next time, you give your 'soon-to-be-girlfriend' some advice on uhm letting it uhm heal properly, uhm you better do it right. Don’t want her coming back here screaming about an infection, that would be less attractive. And bad for business.”
Raven crosses her arms and raises an eyebrow.
“Well I gave her the brochure didn’t-"
Yang stops mid-sentence, suddenly realizing Raven was mimicking her stammering from earlier.
“Wait, what? You eavesdropped?”
Yang can't hide her embarrassment, knowing how her mother will never let her live this down for years to come. She hides her face in her hands.
“Fuck my life.” she mumbles.
The older woman barks out a mocking laugh and continues to taunt her.
“You should’ve heard yourself, a little girl with a school crush, asking someone out for a first date. Amazing. Just like your father.”
“Mom, shut up, please.” she says with a muffled voice.
“You better take the rest of the day off, so you can still get out of that wackass outfit and put something decent on for your date with this girl.”
Yang removes her hands from her face and looks at Raven, eyebrows raised.
“You sure you can handle it here?”
Raven uncrosses her arms and swats a hand at her.
“Yeah yeah. Get lost before I change my mind.”
Yang’s eyes brighten and before her mom can say anything else, she quickly grabs her coat and walks out the door. She hops on Bumblebee, her beloved motorcycle and drives away. Thinking about her date with Blake, makes a massive grin appear on her face and she thinks about her the whole ride home.