What kind of tattoo? The Ninja Tattoo!!
Today Jorthusbooks will be joined by a character from “The Ninja Tattoo” by Dellani Oakes. Please welcome Teague McMurtry as a few questions are hurled at him and then enjoy an excerpt from “The Ninja Tattoo.”
What is your name?
What do you want most?
Wow, ask something I can answer. Reckon I want to stay alive long enough to build a life with Vivica.
Why is this so important to you?
Cause I think I’m falling in love with her. Can’t be in love if you’re dead.
What makes you happy or sad?
Sad? The way people treat one another and think it’s okay. Happy, the way I feel when I’m with Viv.
How do you treat the people in your life?
I try to treat everyone by the Golden Rule. Course if they screw me over first, it’s no holds barred.
Can people count on you?
Absolutely! I am a man of my word.
What makes you angry?
Lying, cheating, stealing, low life sacks of shit.
Do you stand up for your beliefs?
You bet! I respect our forefathers and I do my best to defend our great nation. That’s why I gave six years of my life to the Army.
What excites you?
Well, you can bet it ain’t pinochle. Right now, Vivica excites me so much I can’t hardly see straight.
What do you do for a living?
Right now, I’m doing landscaping, but it’s a means to an end. I’m working on getting my college degree and one day I’d like to be a professor. Between my G.I. Bill and my landscaping, I’m putting myself through college.
What kind of books do you like?
I read just about anything. I like biographies, spy books, murder mysteries, romance novels. If it’s well written, I’ll read it.
What kind of music?
I like damn near everything. I’m not a fan of rap and I find reggae kinda boring, but I’m willing to give any song a listen if it appeals.
What kind of TV/ movies?
I’ll watch everything except soppy chick flicks. I’ll even sit through a romantic comedy. Just don’t expect me to watch “The Notebook” or “What Dreams May Come” – ain’t happening. I’d rather shoot myself in the foot.
What’s the one thing you’d most like to do before you die?
I’d love to marry and grow old with Vivica.
If you could, what’s one thing you’d change about yourself?
I’m pretty happy with who I am. Yep, I’m satisfied.
What is your biggest fear?
My biggest fear is that I won’t be able to protect Vivica and myself from her psychotic brother.
What would you give up everything to have?
I’d pay real money to have a quiet life – the one I thought I was going to get when I came home.
What is the biggest mistake you’ve ever made and are you going to be able to rectify it?
My biggest mistake was crossing Randy, Vivica’s brother. I’m hoping I won’t have to kill him.
What food would you never eat?
I’ll eat damn near anything, but I’ve never been able to get Limburger cheese past my nose.
You’ve dressed to impress. What are you wearing?
Most impressive clothing used to be my Army dress uniform. Now, I’d have to buy me a suit to make a good impression. Best thing I have right now are chinos and Oxford shirts.
What one thing have you found unattainable thus far in your life?
Finding peace and quiet without someone trying to kill me! Working on that, though.
What is about to change for you?
My life’s gotten a whole lot better since I met Viv. It’s going to change when I ask her to move in with me.
Where do you live?
I live in a bitty, no-count town on the east coast of Florida, not far from Daytona.
Who are you?
I’m ex-Army and I’ve seen more death than I ever wanted. Done a few things I hoped I never would. Now, I’m going to college and working landscaping to pay my bills.
What do you see when you look in the mirror?
I see a man who’s working to keep it together. I see a hardness in the eyes that wasn’t there a few years ago. I swear, I aged 20 years when I was in the Army.
Who do you hate and why?
My mama taught me not to hate anyone. But I’m not too happy with this biker gang that’s after me and Viv.
Early morning sun set the sky on fire, glistening off the water, momentarily blinding him. He flipped down the visor then dug his sunglasses out of the glove compartment, sliding them up his nose with one hand. He’d chosen the scenic route to work just so he could enjoy the sunrise. The river looked like molten silver shot with gold strands. The sky was a cheerful blend of rose, lavender, azure, peach and plum. The sun peeping over the horizon was tinged with red, indicating the start of another scorcher. Hot weather was not unusual in Florida, but wasn’t the norm for early October.
Teague McMurtry waved to the few pedestrians out at this hour. He knew some of them slightly, since many of them were his neighbors. Working the odd hours he did, he rarely saw anyone. After moving a month ago to his small house on Riverside Drive, his neighbors had made a point of coming over to introduce themselves. It was by far the friendliest neighborhood he had ever lived in.
Needing his caffeine fix, Teague drove to the Dunkin’ Donuts before heading to his appointment. He flirted unashamedly with the older women there, teased the younger ones and got a handful of donut holes tossed in the bag when he wasn’t looking. It helped that he was six feet tall, jacked, broad shouldered, sun bleached blonde and tan. The married women drooled, the single ones propositioned him. He dropped a couple bucks change in the tip cup, blowing kisses to them he backed out the door.
“Ow!” A surprised female voice sounded behind him as the door met slight resistance.
“Oh, shit! I’m sorry!” Flustered, he turned around.
In her heels, she was nearly as tall as he was, dark haired, willowy, full busted. Her long, chestnut colored hair was loose around her shoulders, full and curly and damp. When she pushed up her sunglasses, dark green eyes smoldered.
“You always back out the door?”
“Just when I’m working the room,” he said. “I’m so sorry. You’re not hurt, are you? Can I buy you a coffee to apologize?”
She smirked, giving him the once over with her eyes. “I’ll have a caramel latte.”
He nodded toward the counter, holding the door with his hip as she walked past. Several other people frowned at him as they walked through. One old woman purposely stepped on his foot, glowering. She mumbled something, but Teague ignored her. He caught up with the young woman as she placed her order. Setting his coffee down, he dug in his pocket.
“My treat, Jenny,” he said to the woman at the register. “I nearly killed her with the door. Least I can do.”
“You’re getting dangerous, Teague. I keep telling you that,” Jenny said with a giggle. She was in her thirties, married and solidly built.
“Yeah…. Shit happens, right? Take good care of her. I gotta dash. Keep the change, Jenny. Nice running into you,” he said to the woman as he headed toward the door.
He could see her talking animatedly to Jenny as he headed toward his truck. He got his coffee and muffin secured, and pulled away slowly. If the woman had a notion to get his number, it was clearly emblazoned on the doors of his pickup.
Thank you, Teague and Dellani!!