Gideon had flinched when Lorenzo first entered the room. It wasn’t surprising, given the man’s disdain for tattoos and the fact that Lorenzo was absolutely covered in the things. The reaction almost made Lorenzo smile.
He’d decided not to use the session for actual psychology, but instead to give Gideon a horrible time. He talked constantly about why having tattoos is the best thing in the world. About how many people had wonderful artworks inked onto their skin. He spoke about the tattoo shop close to Brisbane he’d frequented when he lived in the area. If Gideon hated tattoos so much, he’d have to hear all about them.
It wasn’t long before he’d clearly worked out Lorenzo’s intentions, though, as he seemed to begin his own form of psychological warfare. Awkward silences, intense stares, tough questions. Their sessions became a battle – a contest of wills. Even as the world began to collapse around them and discussions of working as a Japanese tattooist near Brisbane began to mean very little, they played their mind games and became the fiercest of enemies.
At some point, it seemed that a mutual respect began to form between them. Despite their differences, they saw their intelligence mirrored in one another. Perhaps Gideon had assumed that people with tattoos didn’t have the smarts he had. Lorenzo sure proved him wrong there.
And so their contest of wills became something more akin to friendly banter, even if neither of them had been willing to admit it at the time. It was a good thing, too, because with everything that was to come, they each needed somebody they could rely on.
Lorenzo often wondered what sort of magic Gideon would have developed had he remained a psychologist. Instead, life took him on a different path as the Collapse drew ever closer, and things would never be the same for either of them. Oh, they would never be the same, indeed.