Character sketch (200-words: written for a Genre Fiction unit)

First time I met my workmate, his incisive blue gaze had beaten my read on his. The faded tear-drop tattoo on the right side of his face caught my attention, its perpetuity contrasting with the frantic circumspection of his cerulean orbits. The shagginess of his dreadlocked mullet bordered with the military prowess of a pale shaven and relatively dry scalp. A pair of dice tattooed on his neck burned effortlessly, the red felt kind you’d see hanging off someone’s rear mirror to the sound of AC/DC. The sagginess with which his faded-grey jeans hung below his high-vis vest made me wonder whether the selection of the oversized orange garment was purposeful: the top of his skinny jeans where the stick-like legs morphed into his ass would have been hanging bare in the freezing cold otherwise. Once on break, the brown-beige of his steel cap boots went around in an endless motion as the cigarette smoke spiralled upwards. The lack of a second N in the tattooed name on his forearm made you wonder whether Jenifer’s name had been a product of two distracted parents or simply an uneducated tattoo artist. Perhaps this originality in the name alluded to the man’s idea of being one in a hundred.

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