Hi, today we’re featuring the letter I on NGWN and I’m Dakota, and I’m here to talk about one of my favorite subjects. Ink! Lots and lots of ink. I’m sure many readers have started to notice that many of their heroes, and sometimes heroines are now sporting ink. (Particularly if you are a fan of MC books or shifter tales) Gone are the days that tattoos were merely for sailors and those of ill repute. It has become quite common – even fashionable for people to sport ink – whether it be a memorial to a loved one, or your favorite super hero. (No kidding! One of the guys I work with just had a really cool combo of Batman and Superman put on his upper arm.) As an middle-aged (I won’t claim to be any older than that) woman raised in the heartland, I remember the days where it was only men who were the ones sporting ink. I’ll even admit to having a few myself – much to my father’s chagrin.
So today I thought I’d talk about a few of my characters who have tattoos and the reasons behind them. The first that comes to mind is Harkahome “Hark” Akula – one of the heroes in my Doms of Chicago Books. He was a very interesting character to write – not only due to his native American heritage but the fact that he was the first true male switch I wrote. It made his story very difficult at times, but very rewarding in the end. The second is Akira “Kotori” Ito. The heroine of Kotori’s Sacrifice, she’s a no-nonsense business woman that may look like a delicate flower but anything but. I had fun balancing her always in control personality with her overwhelming need to submit to one man. But enough of that – lets get onto the story behind their ink!
Harkahome “Hark” Akula – Japanese symbols on his back – across his shoulder blades. After being uncollared by his Master, Hark went into the service, but before he did, he had Diachi’s last name tattooed on his back as a way of memorializing the passing of a relationship that laid the foundation for the man he’d become. Later this will bite him in the ass, because once he’s reunited with his former lover, Diachi will catch a glimpse of the ink and refuse to let him run again. The tattoo will also becomes the catalyst that causes personal conflict with the third in his relationship to come to head and results in Bryan (the third) longing for one of his own to cement his place in their unique ménage relationship. By the end of the story, Bryan has is own version of Hark’s tattoo inked onto his hip. The fact that Diachi has a rather alpha response to seeing his name tattooed on his subs – well that’s just a bonus right?
Akira “Kotori” Ito – Hummingbird hovering over a lotus flower on her right shoulder blade. While Kotori literally means “hummingbird” and is the reason why her Dom calls her by that nickname, Akira originally got her ink to honor her Japanese roots and family. One of her favorite memories is walking in her family gardens and watching the hummingbirds with her father. It also has a darker meaning as well, because of her traditional Japanese father’s opinion of her. Much like the skeptics that claim that aeronautically that the hummingbird shouldn’t be able to fly, her father’s lack of faith in her is the same. She uses the ink to remind herself that even though he considers her to be one of his biggest disappointments, she is like the hummingbird and able to defy the odds to succeed – in not only the male dominated world of her chosen career, but at any personal goals she sets for her self – like the winning of her Dominant’s heart.