Authors: Jude Ouvrard
Tags: #romance, #tattoos, #bad boy, #love, #ink
Music, Ink and Love
By Jude Ouvrard
Book Two of the Ink Series
Copyright © Jude Ouvrard 2015
Published by Jude Ouvrard
The right of Jude Ouvrard to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her under the Copyright Amendment
(Moral Rights) Act 2000.
License Notes: This novel is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This print may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please purchase your own copy.
Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
This book is a work of fiction and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, or places, events or locales is purely coincidental. The characters are productions of the author’s imagination and used fictitiously.
This work is copyright. Apart from any use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced, copied, scanned, stored in a retrieval system, recorded or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the publisher.
Cover Artist: Kari March
Pictures: © Viorel Sima
Editor: EV Proofreading
Proofreading: Tami Adams – Magic of Books
To all Levi’s lovers.
Thank you for reading Body, Ink, and Soul
old my hand.” I muttered in her ear, intertwining my fingers with hers. “Star!” I called her name loud but she didn’t hear me.
Her eyes were fixed on Brian; she wouldn’t stop looking at him. I called her name again, louder, and she crumbled to the floor, letting my hand go. Nix’s body became limp. Shit! I had to get her out of here.
“Phoenix?” Brian said. “Phoenix... as in Jackie's daughter?” His face turned white as if he had seen a ghost. The tough tattooed man looked broken and on the verge of crying. I could tell he wanted to say something, do something, but the words didn’t come. I wanted to tell him to leave. Nix’s reaction scared me... She didn’t want to see him.
Nix hid her face in her hands. I didn't know what to say I kneeled beside her and took her face between my hands. “Nix, look at me. Please, I’m begging you.” She was in shock.
Brian approached her and I didn’t know if it was a good idea or not. Clearly, they were both going through something dramatic. She had found her father and he had found his daughter. How fucked up was that? Anything could happen in Vegas, right?
“Levi, hold my hand, please.”
I took hold of both of her hands. She was trembling terribly. I pulled her up, wrapped my arm around her shoulder. Nix looked at me, her eyes sad and empty. I had to save her from this hell.
“What do you want me to do, baby? Let me help you? I don’t know what the hell I should do.” I asked her, not knowing if she was furious, or about to faint. My mind was running a hundred miles an hour, scared.
“Get me out of here, please.” She sobbed. “I want to go to our room, okay? I just need to think it through. You can come back after. I just don't trust myself right now.” She said, her voice breaking.
“I'm not going to leave you alone like this, Rock Star,” I explained to her. “Kyle, I'll be back later, okay?”
He nodded, lost and confused.
Brian was standing next to me, silent and looking at her not knowing what to say. I came to realize that he was her father and I didn’t know their history so I restrained myself from all comments. It wasn’t my place to say anything.
We walked out of the convention. Her crying and sobbing got worse as soon as we were out of the room. I stopped her and placed my arms around her to comfort her. “Come here, Star. Shh... I know... It’s fucking crazy.” I wanted to take her pain away.
“I recognized him because of the tattoos he has on his arms and he looked familiar. This is a nightmare, Angel. This is messed up. What am I supposed to do now?” The tone in her voice told me she was panicking. She never thought she would meet him and I never thought I would face a situation like this.
I cupped her face wanting her to look at me, just me. “We are going to our room and we'll figure this out, okay?” She nodded her head yes. “If you want me to stay, I'll stay and if you want me to go, I'll go.” I kissed her lips. “I'm here for you, Nix, always. Don’t you forget it.”
We walked to the elevator and to our room under the suspicious eyes of the security guard. She was silent and her pale skin told me that she wasn’t okay. How could she be okay after such a shock?
As soon as we entered the room, Nix went straight into the bathroom and started vomiting. I held her hair and rubbed her back. I didn’t know what to think or do... She never talked about him. When she was done, I give her a washcloth to freshen up her face.
“Are you feeling better now?” Each of my words made me feel helpless. I had no clue what I was doing but I had to do everything I could to make her feel better.
“I'm not sure, Lev. My mom did everything she could to keep me away from that man and I had him next to me all weekend. He is a nice man, with a hard look maybe, but he has been nice to you and to Kyle.” She started crying again. “I'm so lost right now.” She wiped her tears away with the washcloth and then she leaned her head on my chest. I held her for a long time. I ended up bringing her to bed, playing with her hair while trying to be the best boyfriend, I mean fiancé, I could be. She yawned a couple of times and fell asleep. I kissed her lips and I went back to the convention.
I felt bad for leaving her, but once she was asleep there wasn’t much I could do for her. She knew how to reach me once she was awake again. Then again, in times like these, I knew that at some point she would want to be alone to think. I left her a small note, just in case
I’ll be at the convention.
Call me when you wake up.
I love you xx
I headed back to Kyle. I had a difficult time processing everything that had just happened. Her mother had done so much damage in Nix’s life. I knew Kyle was going to ask questions so I had to be ready. First thing I noticed when I reached our kiosk, Brian was gone. “What happened with him?” I asked, wanting details.
“He sat in his chair for maybe twenty minutes... he didn’t say a word to anyone and then he left,” Kyle explained. “So, what's their story? What happened? I feel like I witnessed something of importance.”
I wasn't certain if it was my story to tell but Kyle was my good friend and I thought that he had a right to know. I mean, I would want to know after what happened. “Nix's mother got pregnant when she was pretty young.” I looked at Kyle, wondering if he understood what I was about to say.
“Is he her father?”
I nodded. “When Brian found out, he bailed, and when she told her parents, they kicked her out of the house. Some guy offered a roof over her head and she moved to Seattle with him. Nix never met her father, she only saw a few pictures.”
“Damn, okay. Are you sure you can work here today?” He asked worried.
“It will be okay until she wakes up. I don’t know what will happen after that.” I sighed. “Jackie did everything she could to keep Nix away from guys like Brian, including me. When Jackie saw me she freaked out because I'm the same type of guy Brian is.”
“You would never bail on your kid, Lev.”
I knew that and I was thankful that he thought so too. “I meant, the tattoos. It scares people, K. Her mom hates me, it broke their relationship and now, her father is somewhere around here and I don’t know what the fuck is going to happen.” In the past, I always hated dealing with uncertainty.
“Your appointment was up fifteen minutes ago. He should be back in around fifteen minutes. If you don’t want to do it, maybe I could try to squeeze him in.” He offered.
“No, it’s fine. I'll do it.” It would help me to think about something else for a moment.
I ate my cold breakfast really fast. It smelled way too good to ignore and my stomach wouldn’t shut up. Then, I got my things ready for my appointment. I tried my best to concentrate on my work, but I couldn’t. All I could think about was my Rock Star. The look on her face when she realized who Brian was. It broke me. She normally smiled all the time but this morning, she looked like her heart or soul had been taken out of her chest. I never want to see her like this again.
“Levi?” Kyle was standing behind me. “Your guy, Shawn, is here.”
I got up to welcome him; he had his design in hand. We shook hands and started talking business right away. He wanted the tattoo to cover the inside of his forearm. The drawing was well done, but I could see myself adding more details, more depth. It felt a little empty in my opinion.
“Did you draw this yourself?”
“No, my brother did a couple of years ago. He had the same tattoo. He died two months ago.”
“I’m sorry, man.” I was already on the emotional side of the track today. I could feel his reason for wanting the same tattoo.
“It’s okay; he had a rough adult life. He committed suicide two days before turning thirty-two.”
“It’s terrible. I don’t have brothers or sisters, but I have friends that feel like brothers. I don’t know what I would do without them.” Kyle and Tyler meant so much to me.
Shawn was silent and I felt bad. “It’s important to spend time with family when you can because once they are gone it’s too late. My brother and I, we were very close but I didn’t see that coming. I can’t say that I regret anything because we used to do everything together. He kept that part for himself, it wasn’t in my control.”
He was right, I assumed. “You are tough, I would freak out.”
He laughed. “Don’t worry, I did. When he died, I lost my brother and my best friend. I was devastated and I missed him.” He paused. “I still do.”
He kept talking to me and for once keeping a conversation while tattooing was a really good thing. It kept me busy and I had barely any time to worry about Nix.
Three hours later, I was done with the tattoo and Nix hadn’t contacted me yet. Was I nervous? Absolutely. Did I want to run to our room? Hell yes. I needed to know she was okay.
“Hey K, I’m going to head upstairs to check on her, okay? I’ll be back in ten or fifteen.”
“No rush, your next appointment is in an hour.”
I cleaned my space quickly and ran to the elevator. When I got to our room, the bed was empty and unmade. I checked the bathroom and she wasn’t there either. Where was she? I picked my phone from my pocket and dialed her number. I could only pray that she would answer.
“Angel, I’m with Brian. I ran into him on my way to meet you and we decided to talk.” She said with a very low voice. She sounded so fragile.
I wasn’t sure if I heard right. She seemed fine, her voice sounded happy. “Are you okay?”
“I don’t know. I’m working on that.”
Hmm, okay. “Do you want me to join you?” I hoped she would say yes.
“For now, I’m okay. I’ll call you when we’re done.”
“Okay.” I said, not expecting her to say no. “I’ll be at the convention. Call me if you need me.”
“I will, babe.”
Don’t hang up. “Nix, wait.” I ran my fingers through my hair feeling my nails digging into my scalp. “I love you.” I hated feeling so helpless. There was only one place I wanted to be and it was next to her.