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  • Brionna Bennett

Hues of Love

I didn’t expect to lose myself, but when you said I saved you, you destroyed me. It’s simple; love was always hard for me to utter because love is something you feel, something you experience. It’s something that I see each time I walk out of my brown mahogany door from the third floor of my apartment. It’s a curse, really, being able to see true love all around me, to be able to pick out someone’s mate but never find my own. It’s lonely, lonelier than being the last star in a sky crowded by light pollution only to realize that star was nothing more than a plane.

But, that lonely throbbing, numbing ache in my chest changed; it all changed when I met him.

It was spring, two days after my birthday. I knew it was spring because the only tree along the three blocks of concrete and brick apartments made me sneeze. Allergy season was not my friend, and my splotchy skin knew it. Every morning on my way to my internship, I would stop by the local pharmacy, but today was different. It was different because I saw him.

Him, being the person that made my heart skip a beat. Him being the person that when my hand touched the handle of the glass door leading into the pharmacy, our eyes connected. Him having piercing green eyes that touched my soul in a way that I felt I’d known him forever. Then I realized. I did.

When we’re born, we all have gifts, and sometimes in life, we share those gifts with one other person. Our Twin flame. The person that, without them, we would extinguish. At that moment, I felt like I was about to be extinguished. As I open the door, my mouth goes dry because I see him coated in a red aura, an aura signaling he’s with someone. The wrong someone.

He walks right past me, his chestnut hair swaying in the light spring breeze like my chance flying away. But then he turns towards me, with chicklet teeth exposed, showing me a smile that helps the flame stay alive. With a stiff and gruff accent, he uttered, “Thank you kindly.” and I just melted.


It was spring. I had just moved to the big city from the rural hills of the Southern coast. The air was dry, making smog and sweat stick to my face. Specks of cigarette smoke lingered in my stubble, even though I didn’t smoke myself. The change in the air caused my allergies to act up. I’m used to saving trees from smog, not running from it myself. But, I had to leave the country life, my town got too small, and my gifts too large. So my ex, now three times on again-off again girlfriend, moved along with me. Now I’m moving on from roping cattle to roping spreadsheets.

My first stop that morning after having my third cup of morning brown was to the pharmacist. Marcy, my ex, my girlfriend, the person that lives with me, thinks my allergies are all in my head. Well, she was right about one thing that congestion definitely lingered in my head. And she was the start of my new head cold.

As I stepped out of my third-floor apartment, it hit me. I’m not home anymore, and the curse I thought I was running from followed me. Each step I took on the asphalt felt uneven below my boots. I may have had to leave my horses behind, but I needed something that reminded me of home.

As I walked, colors of yellow and blue blinded me, and I just needed the lights to dim. But they wouldn’t. So many people see the person they are supposed to be with but are too afraid to take their chance. Not my problem. Not anymore anyway.

Three blocks later and a line longer than a day at the rodeo, I finally picked up my meds to stop the throbbing in my head. But that’s just it. The moment I left the line and walked towards the door, the blinding light was back, and this time it was lavender.

A color that warmed my soul. It sent a euphoria through my body like adrenalin on an extra dose of steroids. But what was better was what was captivated by this light. It was her. A beauty that reminded me of the early 5 a.m. sun. Her curls dangled low past her shoulders, barely touching her collarbone. The way she opened the door made her hair sway just enough to show her low neckline. My eyes had to drift up before she noticed me staring. But then, there were her eyes. I’m not sure if they were chestnut or hazel, but for a moment, they reminded me how to feel alive again.

A small smile emerged on her face, dimples. She had two of them. She stepped aside for me to pass. Here’s my chance. I feel I must say something, but my tongue is tied more than cattle being roped. But, I had to say something, I felt as if my moment was slipping away, and if I didn’t do something now, I’d be stuck with the life I was already given.

I turned towards her attempting to offer my most southern smile, “Thank you kindly.” That is all I could muster, but my gaze lingered on her as long as she would allow me.

“Of course,” She responded; her voice was nice. Smooth like a Sunday morning before church bells. I nodded my head and walked away from the lavender light, but as I did, my heart told me I would see her again.


“Amber Rose. Amber Rose. Amber Rose.” My body jolted in my seat as my name entered and exited my dreams. This is why I always hated opening a new bottle of my prescription on a workday. It makes me drowsy. “Thank you for joining us, Amber Rose.”

I nodded my head and saw my fellow inturns chuckling in my direction. Today was an important day, the day we stopped being paper pushers and were actually able to work with clients. If I was born with the gift to find people’s soulmates, I might as well use it to make a living. Each of the Interns was handed a folder with a number. Mine shined bright with a glittery purple number two. I could only assume my client would be in meeting room two.

The air felt cold as I stood, but the good kind of cold. The type of cold that keeps you awake and focused. My heelless high-heels make their way down the hall. I saw my fellow interns already meeting their clients before they shut the doors behind them. When I arrived, the big number two stared back at me. It was daunting. This would be my first client. The first time someone would actually be paying for my services. I just couldn’t mess this up. I took a deep breath and opened the door.

Meeting room two was always one of our smallest rooms, but this time it felt almost claustrophobic. I didn’t see the four-person conference table that usually sits in the middle. Nor did I see the black cushioned office chairs. All I saw was a woman with red beach waves and a hue so red, it made the room look like fire.

I cleared my throat as I walked in. I extended my hand, attempting to get the woman’s attention, “Hello, Welcome to Hearts Content Matchmaking, where love is as close as you allow it. I’m Amber Rose, and I’ll be your consultant.”

The woman stood with lips the color of plums and a smile struggling to emerge. She outreached her hand; her grip was strong but not firm. Her hand shook a bit as if she was not sure when to let go. “Amber Rose. Nice to meet you. I’m Marcy Covins.”

“Nice to meet you, Ms. Covins,” I gestured towards her seat. “Please have a seat. I was looking through your file, and you stated you were already in a relationship. So, what brings you here today.”

Marcy fidgeted a bit in her seat. Her freshly manicured nails looked not as fresh after I asked that question, with flakes of polish falling to the floor. “You see, my boyfriend is supposed to be here too. But, I told him the wrong time so we could talk first.”

“Ok, I’m listening.”

“You see, Adam and I have been together for years. And I desperately want him. If you’ve seen this man, you will get it. But, he doesn’t want to move forward, and I moved all the way here to be with him, yet he won’t say I’m his girlfriend.”

“Well,” I started placing my elbows on the table and scooting my seat in, “Why did you move with him?”

Marcy hesitated as her eyes went to her fingers before she found a way to look into my eyes, “I just couldn’t watch him move on without me.”

The door to our meeting room opened as the sound of murmurs and conversations entered. My eyes went straight for the sounds, but they were caught off guard.

“Adam, you made it,” Marcy said as she stood for him to join her. They embraced her, wrapping her arms around his neck, but he attempted to keep his distance as his arms loosened first. “Um, yeah, well, this is Amber Rose. She’s going to work with you so our relationship can get better.”

“I’m what?” I asked but was stunned by Marcy raising her hand.

“We were talking, and I think if you spent your time with a professional, you would learn to appreciate me more.”

Adam raised an eyebrow before finding his seat. “But, I do appreciate you. You’re one of my oldest friends. I care about you.”

“And that’s just it. We’re way beyond just friends, and you won’t admit it. So if you can see, I’ve plucked my nails to their bare tone. I need to go get a touch-up. You two talk, Amber Rose, you have three months. And, Adam, you better get fixed.”

Marcy took her leave and closed the door behind her. She left Adam and me in the room alone. Things happened so quickly I didn’t even get the chance to introduce myself personally. The worst part, Marcy just changed in front of my eyes. I thought she was meek and timid, but the moment Adam showed up, all that changed.

A lump had settled in my throat, and I noticed the fiery red hue left when Marcy did, but a red light was still nearby. It was familiar as if I had seen it in a past life, and it had come to great me. But, it wasn’t a past life, only a past experience. I looked forward, and my eyes lingered on the man before me.

“Pharmacy guy,” I whispered, but apparently not quite enough. Adam raised an eyebrow and leaned closer to me. His hands resting on his chin, making his cheeks meet his eyes, his beautiful green eyes.

“So, since you’re supposed to fix me,” Adam started his grin more Chesher than whimsy, “Tell me what’s wrong.”


I didn’t know anything was wrong with me until Marcy made me meet Amber Rose. Marcy left to go to the farm to visit her family; something about time away makes the heart grow fonder. But, I’m not sure how my heart could expand anymore. At least, for her.

Amber Rose came for me at the crack of dawn; this was was the third session since we met, and I was actually starting to enjoy them. Amber Rose wore her hair back in a nice ponytail, her curls catching in the wind as her waders soaked knee-deep in the river. By day she looked like a city girl, but right now, she was my rural queen.

“So, do you go fishing here a lot,” Amber Rose asked? Her voice took me out of my trance. My eyes moved back to my fishing pole as quickly as I could manage.

“Not too often. I spend most of my free time doing things around the house. Marcy never quite liked fishing, or the outdoors, or the fresh air. She liked the rodeo though, then again, she did always bring an umbrella to keep the sun away.”

Amber Rose let out a chuckle, one that sent electricity up my spine. My mind never felt so happy. “So I take it, you and Marcy do pretty much everything together.”

“That about sums it up. I mean the woman’s my best friend. We’ve known each other since we were five. We met in Kindergarten. Our ma’s were rivals growing up, so it shocked them when we became friends.”

“That’s cute.”

“It was. Until I started to see colors.”


I didn’t want to tell Amber Rose about my gift. It takes a lot for people to get used to. I mean, it took Marcy a good seven years to realize I actually saw colors around people. I let my breath rest as I pulled back on my pole. My eyes went towards Amber Rose, and her gaze rested on me.

“It’s part of the reason I left home.” I paused before walking towards her, “have you ever had a talent that you felt others could take advantage of? If you trust the wrong people, then all that you are would just go away?”

Amber Rose tilted her head to one side. Her hair rested on her shoulder as she found a rock to sit on. Her feet planted in the flowing water as it rushed past the rock she chose to be her seat. She said nothing, just looked over at me with those bright eyes I’ve started to find comfort in.

“Back home, I was similar to you. Something of a matchmaker. I could see these colors that embraced a person like an essence. An incomplete essence, so they would come to me to help them find their other half.”

Silence lingered between us. Only the sounds of water and chirping birds found a home between us. I looked down into the water. Its murk was fitting for what I was feeling inside. No clarity, no direction, just me. And for the first time in a long time, me didn’t feel like enough.

Amber Rose walked towards me. Her hand was as smooth and warm as a dream I didn’t want to wake up from. Amber Rose lifted her head, and her eyes were bright as they looked into mine. “You’re hue is usually red. But, right now, it’s lavender.”

That was when I knew she understood.


The door of meeting room two slammed open as Marcy made her way in. “I gave you three months, and he’s just as bad as when he started.”

I let her frustration breathe. It lingered between us, and it only remained because I knew what her frustration meant. It meant she felt like she had lost Adam. It meant she felt like the person that knew her best was slipping from her grasps. Worst of all, it meant she felt that the person she hired to help was the reason for him drifting away.

I stood up and walked towards Marcy, but all she did was raise her hand. As if her hand was enough to create this distance between us. “Call him, text him, send a carrier pigeon. I don’t care but end it. Adam is mine.”

“But, Marcy. Noth...”

“Stop. End it. Don’t say it’s nothing. If it wasn’t something, I wouldn’t be here now.”

I nodded my head as Marcy lowed her hand. She walked over to the door letting the sounds of the hallway enter, cutting through the tension like a knife. “One more thing. Amber Rose, if you don’t end it, don’t think I won’t tell your superiors.”


That day in meeting room two was the best gift Marcy ever gave to me. The next three months were like a dream, and Amber Rose was the center of all of it. Especially the way the sunset just right made the brown warmth of her skin shine. The way her laugh would play on repeat in my mind even when she wasn’t around. It was like my darkest memories soon were replaced by the memories of Amber Rose, and suddenly the hues I used to run from didn’t bother me anymore. I wanted my own hue, and I wanted it with Amber Rose.

But that’s just it. When someone has their own plans for you, sometimes they contradict your own. At this moment, Marcy and my plans for our future contradicted. I didn’t know how to stop her. But, I did know that when Marcy got mad, there was no stopping her.

“I’ve seen how you look at her,” Marcy said as she threw her things into a suitcase. Our apartment is almost bare from her stripping down the walls. Glass shattered across the floor from the picture frames she broke. “Adam, you’ve changed. You’ve changed for the better, but you didn’t change for me.”

“Marcy, you know I care about you. I always have, but you have to know we can’t keep doing this. It’s not right for either of us.”

“Not right? Who are you to tell me that it’s not right for me to love you?” Marcy stopped with tears weld up in her eyes. The light blue color darkened by her dark circles. “When I met you, you were just a boy wanting to be a cowboy. And I stuck by you until you reached that goal. Now, you’re just going to leave me?”

I stepped forward, placing my hand on hers. Our eyes met, and I knew Marcy was finally starting to understand. “Marcy, I would never leave you. You will always be a part of me. You wanted me to get better, and I have. I’m ready to love again, but I’m not in love with you.”

She moved her hands from mine and zipped up the suitcase. “I know, but you wouldn’t change for me. So you have to go.”


Marcy took the suitcase to the front door and tossed it to the other side. With one final glance at Marcy, I knew my time here had come to an end. I walked past her and picked up my bag; as I did, I saw two things a letter and a train ticket. I raised an eyebrow as I looked back at her. But Marcy just shook her head and closed the door behind me.

Before heading down the apartment complex stairs, I opened up the folded letter and skimmed it. It was from Amber Rose, and it was a response to Marcy. Amber Rose spent these last three months attempting to fix me to be a better man for Marcy, but I only want to be a better man for her. I took out my phone and sent her a text. My train ticket read 6 p.m. Gate E One Way Richmond Va. So I texted her just that. I wanted her to meet me. If she was willing, I knew I could finally find peace with this curse I was given. She just had to want to give us a chance.


The night air was cold, and my legs felt like jello before a potluck. They quaked as I attempted to run. It was already 5 p.m., and If I wanted to catch him in time, I had to make it to the train station soon. I didn’t know what I would say. I just knew that these last three months felt like the opportunity that I desperately needed. It fed a flame inside of me that made my body warm and my toes curl.

I just wanted to say I found my kindred spirit among the lights of lost souls. I just had to make it there in time to tell him. As I ran through the revolving door of the station, I ran down the escalator to gate E. My eyes scanned the area for a man with shoulders so wide I could rest my head between them and still feel small.

Shoulders that I have watched from afar and dreamt about being up close to surround me in a warmth that only Adam could give me. But his shoulders aren’t the first thing I notice. The first thing I notice is the red hue I once saw before is no longer there. It’s gone, and the light that surrounds him is that of bright lavender. A light that brings a sense of calm over me, a peace that makes me want more of him.

I stopped just a few steps away from him. My throat-clearing among the crowd of people, but only Adam turned towards me. His hue of lavender shined brighter as his steppes moved closer. I couldn’t stay away. I needed to meet him. He reached out his arms, encasing me in a warm embrace. An embrace that extinguished all that I once was. An embrace that took the loneliness that this curse gave me away because I had finally found my hue, my one. And as his lips met mine, I was happy to be extinguished because he ignited me even more.

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Hi, thanks for stopping by!

Brionna Bennett is an African American writer born and raised in rural Virginia with a love for magic, fairies, and nature. She is the organizer of DC Creative Writing Read & Critique and a DC Writer’s Salon member. When Brionna is not writing, she is a Middle school special educator helping students with similar disabilities she struggled with growing up. She loves all things Disney, superheroes, and music. 

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