Jack had a bit of a re-occurring problem in his relationships. Things would be going well, they’d hit it off nicely then they'd tell him they were some kind of Nymph.
At first he thought they mean Nympho, which worried him. Slightly.
Yeah he liked sex, but he wasn’t one for all day every day sexcapades.
But that wasn’t what they meant. They would explain that they were a sort of elemental spirit.
None of them ever proved they were what they said. Some were even offended that he'd asked for proof.
Then he'd gone to America for university, and hadn’t had a whole lot of time for dating.
His roommate asked him to draw up a tattoo for him. Jack loved drawing so he sketched up a neato dragon, not too detailed and not too complicated. His friend got the line art done and told him he was invited by the tattoo artist to come along for the next step.
When he got there he talked to the artists and laughed with them, traded art stories. He liked em.
Vick the artist who had tattooed Jack’s roommate became a good friend of theirs and offered to teach Jack the art of Ink. So Jack learned to tattoo.
And he also fell for Vick's little sister, Flora. They'd been dating about a month when she pulled the carpet out from under him. She said she and Vick were Healer Nymphs.
And that was just it. She refused to prove it and told him if he asked Vick for proof she'd leave him.
But they got past that. They had a good relationship, until she had to go to college for pediatrics in Boston.
When he dropped her at the airport she told him he was close minded for not believing in Nymphs.
Which was just mean!
He wanted to believe her, but she refused to prove it.
Which didn’t make any sense!
He asked Vick why she was like that and Vick shook his head, explaining that a lot of Nymphs thought it was rude to ask that. Like being asked to prove you have a freckle on your ass but even more invasive.
Jack was going to go back to Ireland since he had graduated, and there wasn’t much more than friends to keep him in America now. He was planning on going back less than a month after Flora left until Vick offered him a job managing the shop while he went to visit his parents.
Which turned into, every chance Vick could he’d ask Jack to manage for him.
Then after a trip to California, Vick told him he was opening a second location. And he asked Jack to take over as the official owner of the parlor. Of course the building was in Vicks name still and all the rights to change the business needed his approval. But now Jack had plenty of reasons to stay.
So he called his Ma and told her it’d be a while before he could go back to see their family.
Vick moved all his things to California and told Jack the Boss should live above the parlor. So he moved into the cozy above space, which suited him fine.
Jack really liked being called Boss all the time, it made him giggly, and his crew liked to hear him laugh.
About two years after taking over Ink Blot Jack was sitting at his living room window drinking coffee before work, when he saw Jeff, the realtor, take down the for sale sign on the empty old bakery across the way from him.
He’d never seen anyone so much as step foot inside. It’d been empty a loooong time.
But if it was reopening that meant Jack could get baked goods for breakfast and fresh bread everyday!
He was excited now.