I drew some runes on my porch, and my tattoo artist took it way too seriously. by scarytales

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I drew some runes on my porch, and my tattoo artist took it way too seriously.
## I drew some runes on my porch, and my tattoo artist took it way too seriously.

<center>https://i.ytimg.com/vi/n5rS9vNbCDg/maxresdefault.jpg</center>

This happened a few years back, when I was about 19. I lived in a cramped college apartment complex. It was built from a series of large houses, segmented into individual units. During the school year, it was hard to fall asleep without finding means to drown out the cries of drunken himbos and whatever other mating call rung through the town. But hey, the rent was cheap, and you could get high on your front porch without so much as a passing glance from others.

At the time, I was hanging around with a bunch of tattoo artists. They were nerds, and we bonded over a fairly long campaign of Dungeons and Dragons. This all became skewed when I decided to invite them over to my house. It was my first time hosting the game. Because of their Norse-oriented aesthetic, and my tendency to imitate others to quell my social anxiety, I decided to draw some runes on my cement porch. The internet said they meant Calm, Fortune, and Thorn. The message I wanted to say with them was along the lines of "These trust fund chucklefuck neighbors are damaging my calm and are a constant thorn in my side."

I know, drawing runes from a culture I'm new to, instead of just asking my neighbors to not party as hard is pretty petty and cowardly. If I didn't get that at the time, then that Wednesday, the day of the Dungeons and Dragons game, it was certainly made clear to me.

One of my tattoo artist friends, his name was Odi (yeah, like the dog in Garfield). He was normally a pretty chill and outspoken guy. Odi would drive me home from the tattoo studio after long games, he would let me have a beer or two, and he was even trying to teach me to draw properly so one day I could become his apprentice and tattoo others myself. 

Today, he was different. During the game, he was damn near silent, and didn't participate at all vocally. It led to some awkward moments, but the rest of my friends waved it off. They ended up leaving around 10pm, but Odi stayed behind for a bit. He had a few beers during the game, and he said he wanted to sober up and drive home responsibly. I couldn't say no to that, so I brewed some tea in the kitchen as he chilled at the table, twiddling with a few d20s.

As soon as I heard the door open and my friends leave, I could tell it was quite the party night outside. For a brief moment, I heard the thumping of bass and the clacking of beer cans being crushed on pavement, punctuated by screaming morons. I sighed and reminded myself to take some melatonin later if I wanted even a lick of shuteye.

When the tea finished brewing, I walked back into my living room, where Odi was chilling. There, I found a strange sight that to this day, I have never been able to process.

Odi was fixated, staring at me. He was completely still, one arm locked and tensed, his grip white-knuckled against the arm of his chair. His other hand had two fingers joint-deep below his right eye, which lurched downward from the traction of his fingernail. Slowly, horrendously slowly, I watched in stunned silence as he dug his fingers deeper and deeper until... *pop*. With a flick upward, Odi had shunted his eye from its socket, and it dangled onto his cheek, an anchor bobbing from pink stringy flesh rising into an empty hole. Blood began to trickle slowly. 

I blinked and it was like nothing happened. Odi blinked back at me, two eyes and all, holding a mug of chamomile I don't remember giving him. I was sitting on my couch across from his chair, and I don't remember taking that seat.

I tried to speak, but nothing formed. My mouth was dry and my heart pounded any semblance of air from my lungs. He then began to speak, slowly, in a voice I had never heard from him. Odi spoke calmly, almost nasally and vacuous at times. This voice was hoarse, old, and I now realize, welled in sorrow.

"You painted runes on your porch."

I nodded, for it was all I could do.

"You know their meanings?"

I nodded.

"Laguz, Fehu, Thurisaz."

It was gibberish. I thought I had misheard him. Odi continued.

"You painted runes you understand little of... in red. When runes are drawn red, it implies blood. Sacrifice. Request. I see your desires, and the sacrifice is provided."

I finally caught my breath, my heart beating in my ears. My vision was blurred for a half second; long enough for Odi to disappear. The cup of tea was placed neatly on the table, empty, and the door was now wide open. A cold breeze weft in, and the sounds of partying outside grew. There were gasps, then cheers. 

Then there was silence, murmurs, and screams.

I shot up from the couch and ran outside to find a couple dozen college students staring up in shock at an old oak tree next to my porch. A drop splattered upon my porch. Red. I followed the students' gaze, and found dangling feet.

It was Odi. Hung there like meat, snagged with a large branch in his belly. Bits of viscera clung to the splinter impaling him like burnt bits on the end of a roasting stick. I had no idea where he got the noose that held him.

After a few days of police routinely interviewing me, a strict curfew was placed on the apartment complex. Plenty of new policies about partying, drinking, and climbing trees. It didn't matter really; not many people keen on partying stuck around after the suicide.

It was quiet, peaceful after the students moved out. The only tenants left kept the place from closing, after a massive downsizing, and rent got even cheaper. And all it cost was a thorn in one's side.## TLDR Summary:

 I shot up from the couch and ran outside to find a couple dozen college students staring up in shock at an old oak tree next to my porch. But hey, the rent was cheap, and you could get high on your front porch without so much as a passing glance from others. Because of their Norse-oriented aesthetic, and my tendency to imitate others to quell my social anxiety, I decided to draw some runes on my cement porch. As soon as I heard the door open and my friends leave, I could tell it was quite the party night outside. I know, drawing runes from a culture I'm new to, instead of just asking my neighbors to not party as hard is pretty petty and cowardly. Slowly, horrendously slowly, I watched in stunned silence as he dug his fingers deeper and deeper until... *pop*. One of my tattoo artist friends, his name was Odi (yeah, like the dog in Garfield).
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