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The bruising tattoo that appears on Vanishing Patients and other victims of the Tattooed Curse. It is the tattoo engraved upon the body of the Sleeping Priestesses of the Kuze Shrine. The tattoo is composed of two separate images: a snake and a holly tree.
The Holly Tree EditThe holly pattern represents pain of love over those who have died and aches of the heart. The holly plant is symbolically associated with pain owing to its prickly leaves. Its leaves were used as a ward against evil, it is also associated with divinity. The holly tree appears to be the final pattern that is tattooed over a priestess' eyes before they are consumed by the snake.
The Serpent Edit
The snake is the more active element of the tattoo, as it symbolizes the yearning for the dead that will eventually consume and destroy the individual(s) overwhelmed by feelings of loss.
The snake and holly tattoo was tattooed little by little upon the skin of the Tattooed Priestess during the Piercing of the Soul ritual, which lasted all snowy seasons. The tattoos were treated with great reverence and care. If the priestess proved unworthy, the tattoos would be stripped from her in a ritual called The Tearing, and enshrined in the Tattoo Altar.