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Off All the Hues, I Chose You

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The world is full of color. There are never ending hues of reds, blues, yellows, and every color in-between. Most people lack the care, ability, or desire to distinguish teal from cyan. Or magenta from fuchsia. The few who can notice this distinction are the lucky ones in a world where you can pick your soulmate’s hair color. Instead of wishing for it to be red and match a couple million other people, they can wish for it to be crimson and only match a couple thousand other people.

Park Jimin was one of those people who know all of the colors by heart. He had hoped that his artistic nature would help his search for his soulmate, but alas, he has been unsuccessful. He was 20 years old and knew time was running out slowly. Well… maybe he was exaggerating, but 10 years seemed like a short time compared to a potential lifetime or two. He knew if he didn’t find his soulmate before he turned 30, he would die; his soulmate following suit if they were younger than him on their 30th birthday.

Jim was exhausted from searching, however. It felt like he had been searching for his other half for thousands of years. And maybe he had been, he was, after all, a firm believer in soulmate reincarnation. Technically, he had only been searching for five years, ever since he turned 15. At age 15, the effects of your soulmate begin to take place. He was born with dark brownish black hair, just like most Asians. However, on his 15th birthday, his hair began to fade slowly into a chestnut brown with undertones of orange. He was elated because it meant he wasn’t a blank. He had a soulmate out there who was older than him. His hair has only changed color once. It had lightened into a bright orange, but seconds later it went back to its chestnut brown. His hair hasn’t changed at all in two years and Jimin was beginning to worry. What if his soulmate already died? He knew they couldn’t have died from soul weakness at 30 yet; it was unheard of to have a soulmate more than five years older than you. But it was entirely possible for them to die from unnatural causes.

A week before his 21st birthday, Jimin was sitting in a cafe on his university’s campus, catching up on his literature reading. All of a sudden, he felt the familiar feeling of cold water being poured on his head. He looked up and glanced at the window to his left. There he saw his hair was no longer chestnut brown, but it wasn’t orange either. Instead it was red, but not just any red. It was the red of fresh spilled blood, darker than a firetruck red, but lighter than crimson.

“They have good taste,” the boy heard, from across the table he was sitting at.

The newly red head didn’t look up and responded quietly, “I agree.” And he did, all three colors that his soulmate had chosen looked fantastic on him.

As his younger friend, Jeongguk, began rambling on about how his soulmate had horrible taste and ‘what kind of color is fuchsia anyway,’ the older was unable to tear his attention away from his reflection. He was waiting for his hair to change back to its standard color of chestnut. When it hadn’t changed after five minutes, he gave up and turned his attention to his best friend.

“At least you know that it is fuchsia and not pink. I have trained you well, young Padawan,” Jimin said with a smile.

“And thanks to you my soulmate is currently sporting lilac hair,” the younger, pink haired boy said with a chuckle.

“Wait… did you say lilac?” Jimin asked as he spotted something out of the corner of his eye. “Quick, what is color B?” Everyone had a color they would use if they thought they saw their soulmate.

“Neon lime green. Why?” as the words left the younger’s mouth, Jimin watched as the lilac haired boy’s hair transformed into lime green.

“Go! Go go go!” Jimin yelled, as he ushered Jeongguk out of the door. The red head watched as the stranger’s hair changed from lime green to bright orange and his best friend walk up to the stranger. They talked for a minute and then hugged. They stood like that for a few minutes and Jimin had to look away out of jealousy.

Don’t misunderstand, he was beyond happy for his best friend, but now he would be left alone; the one who hasn’t found his soulmate. He sighed and turned his attention back to his book, attempting to focus. Not seconds later, he was doused in cold water. He looked back to the window and immediately scrunched up his nose. Electric blue. His soulmate made his hair electric blue.

Immediately after pulling his disgusted face, however, his hair changed back to its default chestnut brown. He was lucky he was sitting inside a building with heat, otherwise he may have started shivering.

He closed his book and leaned back in his chair. He hoped his soulmate would come running into the café and talk to him. However, after half an hour with nothing happening, the boy decided he would return to his dorm room.

A week passed since Jimin’s adventure in the café. It was now his 21st birthday and he had no one to celebrate with. Jeongguk spent almost every second with his soulmate, Taehyung, after finding him. Jimin understood. He knew the necessity to spend as much time as possible with your soulmate for the first 10 days. But still. He was sad, jealous, and alone.

After his daily lectures, Jimin decided to sit on a bench and enjoy the cool, mid-October weather. He was in the courtyard that Jeongguk and Taehyung met, right outside his favorite café. On most days, Jimin was depressed and couldn’t eat. The doctors said it was early on set soul weakness and that it would only go away after he met his soulmate. They recommended people watching and heavily searching for his soulmate as his treatment. That is when he began to sit in this very courtyard, watching for his own shade of mint green.

He counted 23 people who had their hair change color within the 30 minutes that he sat watching people. Once, he saw someone with mint green hair, but when he wished for it to turn the color of grapefruit, it didn’t change. He quickly wished for it to turn back to mint and continued watching people.

After sitting on the bench for an hour, he saw a man who couldn’t be more than a few years older than himself. He had very pale skin, the color of freshly fallen show, and a bored expression. What caught Jimin’s attention, however, was the man’s shaggy mint green hair. He watched in an emotion akin to horror as it quickly change to a grapefruit pink.

Just to make sure it was his soulmate, Jimin ran through the rainbow twice, three shades of pink, a brown and a white. Just as he was changing the man’s hair from white to black he heard the boy yell.

“Stop god dammit!” Jimin decided to leave his hair black because it suited him really well. He sat smiling to himself at his choice until he noticed the boy was stalking toward him. His smile quickly slipped off his face, replaced by a look of pure horror.

“Three colors!” the shorter boy yelled, gesturing with his fingers to make his point. “It took me three colors to know it was you! Why did it take you 20?” the boy yelled, exasperatedly, wrapping his arms around himself. The man was visibly shaking and his teeth were clattering nosily.

Without thinking, Jimin wrapped his arms around the black haired boy. He held him tight as he drank in the scent of vanilla that was radiating off of the other.

“I’m sorry,” he mumbled into the boy’s shoulder.

“Shut up,” the other said as he wrapped his arms around the younger’s torso and squeezed like his life depended on it. His actions completely opposing his tone of voice.

Jimin couldn’t contain his giggle and just held onto his newly found soulmate as he laughed. Even after he stopped laughing, he clung to the older boy. He never let go of him, even as he was guided by hand to the other’s on-campus apartment. He clung to him as they talked. He held onto him for dear life when he found out his soulmate’s name was Min Yoongi and that he was 23 years old. He held onto him as they shared a bed for the first of many times to come. He clung to him as he took what was his in the most loving way possible. But most of all, he held onto him, prepared to take life head first. He had found his soulmate and he’d be damned if he ever let go of him now.