Kobo Cracks in the Armor
Character Interview: Hayden Stryker
Hello there, Hayden! You’re a bit of a mystery and I’m sure readers would like to know more about you. Thanks for joining us today!
Hey. Helena told me I needed to be here or she’d kick my ass and make sure Tenley and I didn’t hook up, so here I am. Shit. I probably wasn’t supposed to say that, was I? Can we start over?
LOL! Sure! You’re a tattooist and obviously very artistic. How did you choose this career path?
I don’t know that I specifically chose this career path as much as it chose me. I was young when I started apprenticing. I started as a piercer, but it wasn’t my bag. So when I didn’t have clients I designed tattoos for the other artists in the shop. I’d watch them work when I could, especially Jamie and Chris. Those two are stellar tattooists and they ended up being my mentors. Eventually they let me have at it. My first few tattoos were shit, but I put them on myself and Chris covered them over not long after with the phoenix, so it’s not like I have reminders of how crap I was when I started, other than the pictures they took. I enjoy what I do because it allows me to be an artist and I can make a reasonable living at it.
What was your first tattoo and why did you get it? How old were you?
My first tattoo is on my back. It’s difficult to describe, but most people tell me it’s creepy.
I was eighteen when I got it. I wanted one long before that, but I spent a long time scoping out artists to make sure they weren’t going to eff it up. It’s the darkest piece I have and reflective of my headspace at the time. It’s a reminder of how low the lows can get.
Your aunt has a bookshop across the street from your parlour. Family must be important to you.
Yeah, definitely. I’m pretty tight with Cassie. She’s always been a significant part of my life. I doubt she’d ever admit it, but I have a feeling part of the reason she bought Serendipity was so she could keep tabs on me. I think it was coincidental that it actually became a semi-viable business. Cass reminds me a lot of my mom, not like she’s a replacement for her, but they share a lot of the same traits and she’s always been supportive, even when I was effing my shit up. But family isn’t always about blood ties, yeah? Chris and Jamie and Lisa are just as much family as Cass is, even if we aren’t related by DNA.
Tell us about the new girl who works in the bookshop.
Tenley? That chick is effing hot. And she lives right above my Aunt’s store, which is extremely convenient, you know, since I live across the street in the condo above Inked Armor. I like that she’s into piercings. I have a lot of those. And she seems pretty cool from the limited number of times I’ve run into her. I plan to get to know her better.
You and Tenley seem to have a bit of a mutual stalker thing going. *winks* You’ve both been caught lurking in each others’ haunts and peeking in windows. Care to explain?
What? Mutual stalking? I wouldn’t go that far. I visit Cassie all the time. I always have. She’s my family and there’s a coffee shop attached to her store. They sell awesome cupcakes so I usually scarf one of those back while I’m there so Chris doesn’t take the piss out of me. That Tenley works there now is a bonus. As for the peeking in the windows business, I’m not sure where you get your information from, but it sounds pretty effing skewed. There was only one time when I saw Tenley in her apartment and that wasn’t intentional. I was closing my curtains and when I looked across the street I noticed hers were wide open. It’s not my fault she was standing there, short shorts and a tank top.
What have you figured out about Tenley?
She likes ink and piercings, so we’ve got that in common. She’s skittish though which makes conversation with her difficult. I make her uncomfortable, or maybe I just make her nervous, but I’m trying to fix that. From what Cass has told me, she’s not from a big city, so I don’t think I’m the norm where she’s from. Oh, and she’s good at organizing books. I like that, too.
Thanks for chatting with me and my readers today.
No problem. Thanks for having me. Wait, that sounds wrong I mean thanks for interviewing me.
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Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s putting her English degree to good use by writing popular fiction. She is the author of Clipped Wings, her debut novel, and Inked Armor.