Foto bij Remember me | Chapter thirty-one

In the weeks that followed, Krystal felt like a walking zombie. Not only because Amber was in Korea right now – and the only thing she had that reminded her of her girlfriend was her dog, Jack Jack, sleeping on her leather couch in her office and her daily trip to feed Tuna, the cat – but also because her plan currently required a few days of nothing.
Now that Victoria had officially broken the contract with Jung Internationals, Krystal couldn’t immediately ask Jackie and Amy to sign out as well. It would be suspicious and even though the Board would suspect Victoria Song, it was still too soon. The employees at first needed to hear the rumor of Song Software pulling back on the deal. It would be enough to make them doubt but it would need to take some time for everyone to hear the rumor.
Which left Krystal clueless and without direction in life. She wouldn’t usually mind going home, even if it was late after a tiring day, but now her apartment seemed so empty. Jack Jack often came home with her, just so she had something to hold onto. The little dog didn’t seem to mind; he missed her too.
At night, Krystal would let Jack Jack sleep with her in bed. She had to admit that she would have never done that if Amber were lying next to her – nothing was as much a romance-killer as a smelly dog butt up your face – but right now she just missed her and Jack Jack was comforting her a little bit.
During the day, she took him with her to work. Suddenly, Krystal was one of the most popular employees. Flocks of women followed her around, just to pet the little animal on its head. He was fed more sausage than he would ever get with Amber in his lifetime in those few weeks. The tiny animal probably gained a few pounds but since it was comfort food, Krystal just let him eat.
Her father and the Board weren’t exactly thrilled that she took a dog to work. They hadn’t asked why and Krystal didn’t intend to tell them. If she told them she was pet sitting Amber’s dog, it would only get worse and since they weren’t bothered enough by it to send her more than annoyed looks, she kept her mouth shut. And it wasn’t like Jack Jack was misbehaving either. Whenever they were in her office, he just curled up on the couch and slept. Whenever she had a client coming over, they looked confusedly to the little dog – which had a habit of barking in his sleep – but they all gave him a little pet on their way out.
Tuna, on the other hand, seemed to be okay alone. Whenever Krystal came in at night to give her food and fresh water, she miauwed to her with a tone that sounded almost annoying, as if she was not fond of Krystal interrupting the silence that had appeared in the apartment that was otherwise filled with dog barks and piano plays.

Amber had promised that they’d FaceTime every day. In reality, Face Timing with your girlfriend who was currently at the other end of the world was more complicated than they had thought. There was a huge time difference between the West Coast of the US and South Korea.
There was a difference of 13 hours and it was a hell of a job to find the right time to see each other. Eventually they decided to call each other around 7 AM US time and 8 PM KR time. Amber would be done with work for that day and Krystal would wake up for work. On weekends, they shifted the times a little, so Krystal could sleep a few hours extra. Amber was a late-night kind of girl and didn’t mind staying up for her. Whether she called her at 8 PM or 11 PM, it was all the same.
The first time they had called each other, Amber had immediately started laughing. Krystal had set her alarm at 6:45 AM so she wouldn’t miss the call, but that didn’t mean that she looked ready-for-work already. Her hair was messy and she could barely open her eyes. It wasn’t like Amber looked like she could attend a fashion show as well, but the other girl was at least dressed and Amber had this natural look over her that she didn’t even need to try to be good-looking. Even if her hair was messy and there were dark circles underneath her eyes, she was still handsome. Her smug smile, those twinkling, deep eyes and sharp jawline were enough to make a girl swoon.

Their calls would last from a quarter to more than an hour. Krystal would take her phone with her everywhere in her apartment. She didn’t even mind to put it off when she was doing her hair or changed her clothes. It wasn’t like Amber hadn’t seen it all before and often Amber was doing her own thing too. Knowing that the other was close was enough for them.
Krystal was known with business trips, but Amber was really being overworked. She often had to go on until late at night to get everything right for the company she was working for and it almost seemed like they didn’t let her rest. She knew that these things were essential in the life of a composer but that didn’t mean she liked it that she was completely drained.
Amber had assured her that once she got home that she would have time to sleep again but she just had to work hard these couple of days. Krystal couldn’t find peace with it. But she wasn’t allowed to complain about Amber’s situation: she made killer days too, especially now that she had nothing to look forward to in the evening.

Those three weeks were killing her but eventually she got through them, like she got through everything. After all, she was a hard nut to crack.
Krystal was going for a surprise visit at the airport on the day Amber would land. The week before, Amber had reminded her constantly that she would come home at Thursday morning, at 11:54 AM precise. After those three weeks, she was aching to see her again and she knew that Amber felt the same. Precisely because of that, she had told her that she actually wasn’t able to come. Thursday was a normal day and she was expected at the office, especially now that the Board was still struggling with hushing up the fact that Victoria had broken her contract with Jung Internationals. The media was thirsting for scandals and was keeping an eye on them. She was making an excuse that it was very busy at work because of Victoria’s leaving and that she really couldn’t leave right now. The sadness in Amber’s voice when she had said ‘Oh.. okay’ had broken her heart. The only thing that kept her from admitting she would come anyway was the thought of Amber’s huge grin when she would see her at the airport.

In fact, Krystal could go where she wanted because she was her father’s VP. She had quickly discussed it that she needed to pick up Amber from the airport around 12 o’clock and he had given his permission before he could hear more.
“Just go. Make sure you don’t stay away too long. If any of the others ask, tell them you’re visiting Ms. Song again to ask her if she wouldn’t come back.”
Her father knew her well enough to know that even if he had said no, she would’ve gone anyway. Better to grant his daughter this small privilege that came with being family of the CEO and let her come back as soon as possible after that.
Krystal had pecked her father’s cheek as soon as he gave her permission. Her father just ‘hmmpf’-ed and waved her off.

Krystal left the office around 10:30. It was an hour drive to the airport and she still wanted to buy some roses to give to Amber as soon as they saw each other again. Usually it was Amber who was the hopeless romantic but she couldn’t help it. She was just too excited to see her again and the way her girlfriend’s face would light up as soon as she saw the flowers would be the best.
Krystal was at the airport half an hour early. She visited the little flower shop in the entrance hall and she made the seller pick out their best flowers for the bouquet. It was a mix of red roses in the middle, with a bunch of white ones surrounding them. Satisfied, she took the bouquet from the seller and paid for the flowers with her company card – doesn’t everyone profit from their company’s credit card once in a while? – and took off towards the luggage pick-up.
Her watch told her that Amber’s plane had just landed and she couldn’t be more excited. She was rocking forth and backwards on her heels, like a little kid. Wasn’t she allowed to be? It had been long since she had felt so thrilled to see someone. With the flowers in her hand, she waited at the exit hall, waiting for the passengers of flight UAL892 to stream into the hall. It took another half an hour before there were actually people emerging from the luggage pick-up. Relatives, who had been waiting alongside Krystal, ran towards their missed family member and hugged them. Cheers and laughter filled the hall as more and more people emerged. But Amber was nowhere to be found.
There was no reason to worry though. Even if you were one of the first to leave the plane, you still had to wait for your luggage and if it happened that your suitcase was stuffed all the way in the far back of the plane, it would most likely come out last.
But the more people came out, the more unsettled Krystal grew. Eventually the large amount of people also slinked to a small number, often loners who had no family waiting for them. And eventually it seemed like no one come out anymore.
Krystal walked back towards the large screens displaying the flights and Amber’s had already disappeared from the screen. Another one had landed already. With a sigh, she lowered her bouquet. She was about to check her phone when she saw the exit doors open once more in the corner of her eyes. Krystal unlocked her phone but there were no messages of Amber, not even any missed calls. She sighed, put her phone away and looked up.
A grin appeared on her face.
“Ma’am!” she exclaimed loudly, as she started to half run-half walk towards the woman who had just left the exit. She didn’t look up, probably due to the fact that she had her earbuds in.
“Ma’am, you forgot something!” she called, this time louder. With a grim, half-annoyed expression on her face, Amber turned around. Krystal laughed, running now, almost throwing her flowers away in her hurry. Her girlfriend’s face lit up and a confused, surprised expression appeared on her face.
“Krysta-” she started, but her voice got cut off when Krystal launched herself at her and pulled her into a tight hug. Both girls were grinning and laughing, gripping at the other’s body tightly so they wouldn’t leave anymore.
“You forgot me,” Krystal muttered softly.
“I’d never forget you,” Amber chuckled, but Krystal didn’t fail to notice the deep meaning in those words. She knew Amber meant them.
They kissed, albeit quick, since they were still in a crowded airport. And even though Krystal was getting used to showing her love for her girlfriend more, kissing in crowded places was still a lot for her to handle. Amber knew; she’d keep all the excited kisses reserved for when they’d get home.
“But I thought you wouldn’t come,” the other woman muttered after they had bowed back. Krystal chuckled when she started to pout.
“I’m the Vice-President of Jung Internationals, I can do whatever I want. Of course, I’d come and pick you up, dummy. I just wanted to see that adorable look on your face.”
Amber rolled her eyes and ran with her hand through her hair, softly shaking her head afterwards.
“You’re evil, Krystal Jung, simply evil to make me think that you wouldn’t come.”
Krystal grinned, pressed a kiss on her cheek and was about to reach down to grab her hand when she felt how rough Amber’s wrists actually were. Curiously, she let her fingers run over the place, not being used to Amber’s hands not being incredibly soft. But the moment she pressed a little harder, Amber hissed and took her arm back.
“What’s that?” Krystal asked worriedly. “Did you fall? It felt like a healing wound or something like that-”
Amber shook her head, but didn’t let her arm fall back to her side.
“It’s not that... just a new tattoo but it’s still sensitive, please don’t press on it,” she said quickly. Krystal looked at her with wide eyes.
She knew that Amber had tattoos and at that one point in her life she must have let someone place them but she hadn’t yet experienced that Amber had a new one. Eight years ago, she had had tattoos as well, but a lot less than she had right now. Krystal had always been fine with her tattoos – finds them sexy even – but to see her get a new one so abruptly was kind of shocking. Perhaps it was because she thought that Amber might be discussing getting new body decorations with her since they were in a relationship now or perhaps she just wanted to have a say in what kind of things she tattooed on her body – for example, she wasn’t exactly that fond of the Charmander on her upper arm but despite that she had always supported her.
Her face fell, although she tried to hide it.
“Oh,” she muttered. “Well, what is it?”
Amber looked at her with a doubtful expression, sighed and eventually lifted her arm. Krystal took it and rolled up her sleeve, to look at it more.
“The only thing I see is a rubber band-” she started, “-this is not a tattoo but a-… Oh… wait…”
Amber stopped walking and put down her suitcase, so Krystal could take her time to admire the small, curly handwriting that was written all over her girlfriend’s wrist. It was designed like a bracelet, going all the way around, showing her name, again and again. Every time in the same swirly handwriting that looked like it came from the Victorian Age. In awe, she stared at her name, embedded in Amber’s skin. She was speechless.
“I didn’t tell you because it was supposed to be a surprise but I could have known that you’d find out the moment we’d meet again,” Amber chuckled softly. “But don’t poke, it’s still healing.”
Krystal shakily breathed in and out as she let Amber’s arm go. She noticed her girlfriend looking at her from the corners of her eyes but she kept her mouth shut.
Instead, she just took Amber's hand again and intertwined their fingers. She took one of Amber's suitcases in her hand and started walking again.
"Do tattoos hurt?" she asked her. Amber rose her eyebrows.
"Depends on the size, the place and whether you want color."
"Say I want one in my neck, just underneath my hairline. A small one, just a few letters, would that hurt a lot?"

Amber frowned.
"It's a sensitive spot but if it's a small one, you will be done in a quarter, I suppose. It won't hurt long, at least. Why?" she speculated, shooting Krystal a curious gaze.
Krystal tried to contain her smile.
"I want your name there."
Amber immediately stopped walking and looked at her in horror.
“You don’t understand,” she started, causing the other woman to lift her eyebrows skeptically, “-you need to think of this carefully. A tattoo is not something you can simply erase and even if you do, it’ll be incredibly painful and it’ll leave a scar. It’s with you for life and well.. what if… what if we break up? You’ll walk with my name in your neck, doesn’t that bother you?”
Krystal simply chuckled.
“Well, you didn’t think of I thoroughly then either, did you? You just tattooed my name on your wrist. If we break up then you’ll have the same problem, idiot.”
“But that’s different,”
Amber muttered softly. “I have never forgotten you after we broke up the first time. I don’t think I’ll be able to get in a romantic relationship with someone who isn’t you. Even if we break up, you’ll always be a part of me. I won’t regret my tattoo but you might regret yours.”
The moment she stopped talking, Amber seemed to realize she had said something incredibly wrong. Krystal put her hands on her hips and stared at her girlfriend in annoyance. So what? What Amber allowed to get a tattoo of her name but she wasn’t allowed to get a tattoo of hers? Bullshit, she was going to do it no matter what.
“What makes you think I’ll regret my tattoo, even if it’s my first one?” she growled. Amber didn’t look at her when she answered.
“You forgot me in those eight years. But there hasn’t passed a day in which I didn’t think of you. If we break up, you’ll forget me again.”
Krystal shook her head in disbelief. For a moment, she didn’t even know what to say. What had come out of Amber’s mouth was simply so stupid that there was no way she could seriously respond to this.
“I never forgot you either. But I pushed you away because it was what was best that time. But if you think I have ever enjoyed myself with Kai or somebody else like I have with you, then you’re greatly mistaken,” she hissed. “And I’m going to get that tattoo, whether you like it or not. My father gave me a few hours to pick you up so I’m going to get it right freaking now otherwise I’ll lose my courage. And you can either come with me or stay here – I don’t care – but I’m going to get that tattoo no matter what.”
When she was done, she let Amber’s hand go and spun around on her heels. Krystal walked towards the exit with furious, large steps and didn’t care to slow down for her girlfriend. It took only a few seconds before she heard a deep sigh and footsteps behind her. Amber followed her through the airport back to Krystal’s car, albeit struggling with the flowers and her two suitcases. Krystal didn’t slow down her speed nor tried to help her.

As soon as they had reached the car, Krystal unlocked it and sat down behind the wheel. She took her phone and googled for the closest tattoo shop, typing in the address in her navigator a minute later. Amber had opened the trunk and was putting her suitcases there. She laid the flowers on the backseat and eventually sat down next to her. She sighed deeply and ran with her hand through her hair.
“Since when did my girlfriend get so stubborn,” she muttered. Krystal shot her an angry glance.
“I always was, just like you,” she said coldly. “I suppose we’re going home?”
Amber’s eyes fell on the address typed into the navigator and she shook her head.
“If you’re going to get that tattoo, I’ll be coming with you so I know you’ll choose at least a good tattoo artist. You won’t get one at this shitty shop right here,” she said, as she pointed towards the address on the small screen. “I’ll take you to the shop I get my tattoos from.”
Amber signed that they should switch seats, making Krystal sigh. Both women got out of the car so Amber could sit down behind the wheel. It took them a few minutes to leave the parking lot and get on the highway

Half an hour later they arrived at Amber’s tattoo shop. Now that she had made up her mind about getting a tattoo, it kind of scared her to really get one. She had never been a fan of needles or pain so getting a tattoo in a sensitive spot wasn’t ideal. Still though, she wanted it very badly, right now more than she wanted anything else. It felt like she was going to carry a part of Amber everywhere she went. And she already did that in her heart, but now it felt final, like an actual something you could touch. Even if it was in her neck, just below her hairline, it would remind her that Amber would always be close, even if they each lived on another continent.
That didn’t take away the nerves though.

The shop looked pretty decent from the outside. There was a large window that viewed the empty lobby. Above the door, large white letters displayed the name of the shop: Ink-redible Tattoos.
“Ready?” Amber asked her. Krystal noticed that she had her jaw tensed but nodded nevertheless.
“Of course. I was born ready,” she said stiffly, as she entered the tattoo shop. She heard Amber chuckle. When her girlfriend grabbed her hand and intertwined her fingers, she didn’t pull back her hand, glad to find some comfort.
The shop was empty, which didn’t surprise her at all. It was around 2 o’clock on a normal work day. Nevertheless, soft music was played from the speakers that hung at the ceiling and she heard someone softly hum along to the melody at the back of the shop.
“Yo, Dave!” Amber called. Immediately, the humming stopped. They heard some rumbling that sounded a lot like metal clattering against metal and eventually footsteps. A large man, probably a head or two taller than both of them, appeared around the corner. His hair was long and put in a bun. He had some scruff on his face, probably a day or two old, and his eyes were blue and twinkling like stars. He wore a black t-shirt and a leather jacket that accentuated his huge biceps. From the back of his neck, Krystal saw tattoos curling up. Despite his size, he didn’t look threatening at all. Rather like a cuddly, large teddy-bear.
When he noticed who had called him, he started to grin widely.
“Amber!” he called out, in a voice that was able to create earthquakes – low and rumbling. “Long time no see, mate. It has been a while, hasn’t it?”
To her surprise, his accent was British. London-British, if she was correct. He had this special way of making the ‘h’ in a word silent.
Amber grinned as well. She gave Dave a quick bro-hug, which looked rather weird, seeing such a small woman hug a man of that size.
“Sorry man, I’ve been drowning in work lately. Just returned from my flight to Korea,” she sighed.
“Doesn’t matter at all, my friend. I hope you’re doing fine though?” Dave asked her. Amber nodded and smiled.
“Of course!”
Dave smiled. His gaze lingered on Amber for a second but he then turned to Krystal, letting his eyes glide over her body, as if he was trying to remember who she was. His blue eyes didn’t make her nervous, but she had the urge to cover her body with her hands nevertheless. Eventually, a frown appeared on his face.
“Don’t believe you’ve ever been here, missy. Ya don’t seem like the person who comes here often either. I’m Dave McGrior – to your service – and I run this little establishment here.”
He stuck out his hand towards her and Krystal took it, shaking it for a moment. His grip was firm, but softened when he noticed she wasn’t that strong.
“I indeed have never been here,” she admitted, a bit uncomfortably. “I am-”
“She’s my girlfriend, Krystal, the girl I told you about,”
Amber interrupted. “She liked to get her first tattoo.”
Krystal poked the other woman hard in her ribcage with her elbow, causing Amber to moan for a moment but that didn’t prevent Dave’s face from lighting up. For a split second, he looked like a child who was just told by its mother that it was allowed to pick out two candies to take home, instead of one. Dave grinned like crazy.
“You told me you had met someone special but I wouldn’t reckon I’d ever meet the lucky lady! Last time we met you told me it was complicated but look where you are now! All happy holding her hand!” he laughed. “Let’s get that tattoo set, anything for Amber’s girlfriend, of course.”

Dave took them backwards into the shop where there were three large, black leather chairs, ones that looked like the ones you had to lay in when you went to the dentist. There was another stool next to it so the tattoo artist could sit too. On the wall hung pictures of people who had gotten their tattoos at the shop.
“Did he tattoo you?” she asked Amber, when Dave had walked off to get his stuff. Amber nodded and grinned.
“He did my whole arm basically, besides the new one. I got that one in Korea, together with a few smaller ones. But I let him do the more important tats,” she explained. Amber walked towards the wall and took off one of the pictures, showing it to her. Krystal took the picture from her and looked at her favorite tattoo of Amber’s: the boat surrounded by clouds and smoke and a moon. It was aesthetic and incredibly beautiful. Together with the one puppet behind her ear, it was the tattoo she liked best. The fact that Dave had tattooed this on her reassured her a little bit.
Dave came back with his equipment, sitting down on the stool next to the large chair. He tapped on the leather with his hand, signing that Krystal should sit down. She gulped audibly and sat down, suddenly feeling very nervous now that she was able to lay her eyes on the tattoo gun. It looked like it could pierce right through her body.
“So, tell me, Krystal, what did you have in mind?” Dave asked her. Krystal explained her idea to him, how she wanted Amber’s name – in the same curly style of her own name on Amber’s skin – in her neck, just underneath her hairline. It shouldn’t be too big, just a few centimeters long. Tiny and refined, not too noticeable but still present.
Dave started to glow again when he listened to her story, nodding sometimes and humming in agreement.
“You have a special girlfriend, Amber,” he said, when she was done, giving them both a wink. “I would have expected Amber to tattoo your name on her arm – she basically tattoos everything on her arm, am I right? – but it’s rather special that both partners get a tattoo of the other, especially if they’re not married yet. And from what I have heard, you two aren’t dating that long.”
Krystal and Amber exchanged a glance. Amber smiled shyly and looked down, causing Krystal’s cheeks to slightly change color. She cleared her throat, feeling she needed to speak up.
“We don’t have to marry for us to know that we want to stay together for the rest of our lives,” she said, making Amber look up in surprise again. Dave grinned.
“That’s the spirit, real soulmates right there,” he said happily. “Let me just make a quick sketch of the tattoo before we start.”
Dave stood up to get a pencil and some paper, leaving the two girls alone. Krystal sat down on the chair.
“Did you mean that?” Amber asked her quietly. Krystal looked up and nodded.
“Yes. Otherwise I would never tattoo your name in my neck,” she chuckled softly. Amber shrugged.
“People do weird things when they’re in love,” she said neutrally, as if she was stating a fact. “And right now you’d burn down your own company partly for me so I know what you’re capable of.”
Krystal rolled her eyes.
“I’m getting that tattoo, Amber, I’ve made up my mind, whether you like it or not.”
Her girlfriend lowered her face until it was on the same level as Krystal’s, closing the distance between their lips quickly. Krystal already opened her mouth slightly, holding in her breaths, but Amber would not close those last few inches for a kiss.
“I do not like it because I think you should have thought of it more thoroughly… But I’d be lying if I said I didn’t find it incredibly sexy that you’re going to carry my name from now on in your neck,” she added in a low whisper. Krystal’s mouth grew dry.
“Save that for later when I get off of work,” she muttered. She tried to tear her eyes away from those deep brown orbs, but her gaze was glued to them. Amber chuckled and bowed back.
“Didn’t you say you’d have a few hours? The tattoo will only take a quarter… half an hour if Dave wants to have a chat afterwards. We’d have enough time to-”
“Shut up,”
Krystal hissed, as she tired to control her burning cheeks. Amber simply grinned and shrugged.

Dave returned with the sketch of Krystal’s tattoo and handed it over to them. She took it and started to smile immediately; it was exactly as she had pictured it. Amber nodded in approval too.
“Looks good, Davy,” she muttered, as she gave the drawing back to her friend. Dave grinned in response before he turned to Krystal.
“Where do you want me to draw it, dear? Arm, leg, shoulder, ankle, wrist-”
“My neck, please,”
she replied. “I want it just underneath my hairline.”
Dave smiled and nodded.
“Sure thing.”
He made sure the leather chair she was sitting on changed from position, so it functioned as a bed instead of a chair. There was a hole and some extra pillows for her head to rest upon.
“Just lay down and relax. The more you tense up, the more you’re gonna feel it. Amber knows what I mean. Just talk to each other,” Dave said. The nauseous-making sound of the tattoo gun that was switched on entered her ears. With her lower lip caught between her lip she inhaled deeply and exhaled slowly, pressing her eyes shut and trying to relax. It was hard when the ringing of the tattoo gun was so close to her ear, but she tried to nevertheless.
“I’ll just brush away some of your hair now,” Dave said. “Can’t tattoo yah with those gorgeous locks falling down your back, now, can I?”
She felt Dave’s hand in her neck. Her chest rose sharper with every passing breath.
“Hold my hand,” she muttered in a choked voice. Immediately, Amber’s hand curled around hers and pinched it reassuringly.
“It will be fine.”
“I know, don’t say that,”
Krystal barked, causing Dave to chuckle softly.
“Want me to count down, sweetie?” he asked her nicely.
“No, just do it.”
Krystal grunted when she felt an unpleasant pain spread through her neck. She pinched in Amber’s hand and she pinched back, giving Krystal something to hold onto. She gritted her teeth together. Even though it was very unpleasant – probably due to the soft, sensitive skin – it wasn’t that bothersome that she wanted it to stop. At least, Amber had promised her it would take less than a quarter, so she believed her and endured it. She felt the tattoo gun slide over the back of her neck and she tried to make out the letters of Amber’s name, albeit hard because she had a hard time concentrating.
In the meantime, Dave asked them how they had met together. His experience with new clients had probably taught him that talking to them made it a lot easier. Only Krystal wasn’t an easy talker, which meant Amber did all of the work whilst she was still undergoing the pain. Nevertheless, it was satisfying to listen to her girlfriend tell Dave how they had met, going back all the way to when they were still hopeless, hormonal teenagers. Now that she thought of it, wasn’t it kind of romantic how they had basically waited all of their lives to be together? Amber had never fallen out of love with her and had never gotten in another relationship after her. Krystal had been forced to get in a relationship with Kai but she had not loved him. She had called off her wedding and provoked her father for Amber’s sake, because she knew that Amber brought the best up in her. And now they were finally together. The only thing they needed to do now was get the company, then everything would be perfect. Dave listened in awe, huffing or humming at the exact right time.

Ten minutes later, the annoying buzzing of the tattoo gun was finally shut off, and the pain reduced to a minimum. There was still a faint stinging left, but she guessed it would stay for a while. Dave had cleaned the area and put a Band-Aid on the freshly set tattoo.
“You got to leave it on for about 2 to 8 hours. Do not leave it on for longer because bodily fluids will probably mess up my piece of art,” Dave instructed. “Better not to take swim in an ocean or swimming pool or whatsoever this week, because the chemicals will not do it much good. I suggest that you put your hair up, since it can get stuck to your new decoration as well. The redness will disappear later on this week, I suppose. If it keeps hurting or stays very red and sensitive, please come back. Don’t wait and come back, but I think Amber will keep an eye out for yah.”
Krystal nodded solemnly, already knowing that Amber was going to be the one fuzzing about her tattoo more than she was going to. She put her hair up in a ponytail after that, because it indeed felt a bit uncomfortable to have her hair touching the oversensitive skin all the time.
“How much will it be?” asked Krystal, already taking out her wallet of her purse, but Dave immediately waved it away.
“Everything for Amber’s girlfriend. It’s all for free, don’t worry about it,” he grinned. “Come back anytime, the door is always open for you.”
Krystal smiled timidly and nodded stiffly. Because of her upbringing, acts out of kindness like this one made her a tad uneasy. Her father had taught her for years that everything came with a price, especially for women. Paying for a good was something she viewed as right. She had never seen her father act out of the kindness of his heart and it’s very difficult for her to do something like that for people who are not her significant others as well.
“I trust you that you’ll look after her, let me know if there’s anything wrong,” he said to Amber, who nodded.

They thanked Dave another time and eventually walked back towards the car. As soon as they set a step outside of Ink-redible Tattoo, Amber turned to her.
“And, what do you think? About the whole tattoo thing,” she asked enthusiastly. Krystal smiled at her eagerness.
“I think that I would never want to get so many as you, because I simply would not be able to handle it,” she laughed. “One is enough.”
Amber laughed.
“You immediately chose a painful spot for your first tattoo. Getting a tattoo placed on your arm is much less painful,” she said. “But I agree. One is enough.”
Krystal lifted her eyebrows.
“Am I not allowed to get any more?” she asked whilst she squinted her eyes.
“Of course you are. As long as you keep tattooing my name, you can have an infinite number of tattoos.”
Krystal rolled her eyes and chuckled. They got back into the car. The vehicle came back to life and greeted them softly by getting the engine to purr.
“I’ll take you home and then I’ll have to get back to work,” she announced. Amber nodded slowly.
“So, you won’t stay?” she asked softly. Krystal looked at her for a moment and shook her head.
“No, why would I? Dad expects me back soon,” she replied, as she steered the car out of the parking place and onto the road. Amber shrugged and looked out of the window.
“I thought you might.”
Krystal frowned and speeded up. It took her a moment to understand why, but as soon as she had made the connection, she started to grin.
“Please don’t tell me you’re horny.”
“IT’S BEEN THREE WEEKS, OF COURSE I AM HORNY!”
Amber bellowed in despair. Krystal started to laugh. She had to wrap her hand in front of her mouth to prevent herself from snorting.
“You’re incredible, that you can even think of sex right now,” she laughed. Amber grunted and muttered something from under her breath, that sounded a lot like ‘Fuck’.
“Shut up,” she muttered annoyedly. “How come you are not?”
“I am. Or at least, I would definitely not mind having sex right now but I have this certain amount of self-control, so I can turn it off and go back to work,”
she chuckled. Amber raised her eyebrows.
“Are you saying that I have no self-control?”
“Exactly.”

Amber sighed and wrapped her arms in front of her chest, looking out of the window. It wasn't until they got home until Amber spoke again. Krystal had found the annoyed silence between them rather funny, knowing that it was nothing more than sexual frustration that had built up for three weeks straight. She hadn't lied when she had said that Amber had literally zero self-control. She was the kind of person who lived in the moment and liked to get directly satisfied when she felt like it.
That was partly the reason why Krystal had fallen in love with her, despite being completely opposite of character. And exactly because she was able to control herself a few hours more, she denied Amber her pleasure right now and made her wait. If she managed to wait a few hours until Krystal got home from work, the sex would be so much better. But she wasn't going to tell Amber that.

Krystal helped Amber to carry the suitcases upstairs. As soon as they entered the apartment, loud miauwing sounded from behind the couch. Amber frowned.
“Where’s Jack Jack?” she asked, clearly a bit disappointed that the tiny dog hadn’t immediately ran towards her to lick her hand.
“He’s at my place. He was asleep when I left so I let him be. I’ll bring him over tonight,” she answered, as she carried the suitcase towards the bedroom.
Amber followed her. Krystal put the case down and suddenly felt two arms around her waist, embracing her tightly in a hug. Amber laid her chin on her shoulder and moved her lips to her neck, pressing soft kisses on the still sensitive skin. Krystal cocked her head, causing her to grimace a little in pain due to the still fresh tattoo.
“You really don’t want to stay? Your father can wait another hour or so..” her girlfriend muttered, letting her lips trail from her ear ‘till her collarbone. Krystal sighed and closed her eyes. It took a lot of control to turn around in her arms and take her face in her hands.
“Tonight, I promise,” she said. “Go get some rest. I don’t even think you’ll last for more than a quarter now.”
Amber sighed and rolled her eyes, immediately shaking Krystal off. The brunette simply laughed.
A few minutes later she heard the shower run. It would probably be ice cold.

She went back off to work and left Amber alone. A few more hours later she returned together with the little dog by her side. They found Amber passed out in her bed, arms and legs sprawled wide and her mouth a little open. She snored softly and even though Jack Jack immediately jumped on the bed, barking and licking, she wouldn’t wake up. Krystal looked at her for a long time, a smile plastered on her face.
Eventually, she changed her clothes – there was always a spare set of pyjamas for her for if she wanted to stay over unexpectedly – and crawled under the sheets next to her girlfriend. And for once, she let Jack Jack sleep in between of them. The tiny dog gave her a lick over her cheek as some sort of good-night kiss before it curled itself up, with his head close to Amber’s. A dog butt was shoved into her face, but Krystal bore with it for one night.

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