OUCH! Nipple, navel and nose piercing is now available in Wan Chai. But unlike the traditional tattoo, this form of body despoilment is not merely bought. It must be earned. The long journey to Mrs Chien and areola aeriation begins, for most people, outside the Luard Road 7-Eleven. 'Everyone you see around Wan Chai with pierced body parts is related,' said teenager Jade Hui. 'Mrs Chien is the only person who does piercing after dark. So all must go through her and her piercing gun goes through all'. Mrs Chien is strictly underground. She runs a cupboard-sized dress-repair shop halfway up the stairs of a Lockhart Road building situated between Neptune and New Makati. The journey there is short but arduous and it is best to go armed with beers. First the iron grill door must be unlocked from the inside. This involves dexterous work with broomstick. Then Mrs Chien herself must be roused, apologised to and persuaded to go get her gun. 'This is not easy,' says Maylan Tan, whose nose and naval carry little silver rings. 'She will do an ear no problem. She did my nose after about five minutes of begging. It took 20 minutes of pleading to get my navel done and lately she has been outright refusing to do the nipples of Chinese girls.' As you sit among the half-tailored dresses in Mrs Chien's tiny shop, a beer can in your hand, your shirt off, watching while strange hands attempt to squeeze your nipple into the sights of an ear-piercing gun, you begin to share Mrs Chien's reservations. The problem is simple: the gun is designed for ear lobes and lobes are big, nipples are small. When Mrs Chien's assistant starts rubbing chocolate ice-cream on your nipple in an attempt to rouse your diminutive areola, these reservations deepen. Finally, it is probably not the cold that swells your nipple, but fear. Then there is a snap from the gun, a tiny spark of pleasant pain and applause from your supporters. You look down and there is a crushed beer can in your hand and a gold-coloured ear-stud running through a nipple. Your nipple. The cost: $50 for one, $75 for two, plus that again in tips. And if all goes well you are back in the Big Apple within an hour - a Mickey Mouse plaster on your pap and two mini-bottles of surgical alcohol in your pocket as you pour a couple of maxi-bottles of any kind of alcohol down your throat.