(Bad pun, wink wink. College!AU. Marco is pleasantly surprised to find a cute boy named Jean at his door, asking if he can dye his hair.)
I don’t quite hear the knock on my dorm door at first, rising from sleep with a tired groan. I don’t bother to put on pants - I’m wearing a T-shirt and boxers, surely that’s enough to answer the door - and stare with unfocused eyes into the face of the intruder.
He’s pretty good to look at - angular features, soft-looking skin, and his hair is interesting, topped with blond and fading to a dark undercut. The roots on the top of his head are starting to show brown, and I get the feeling that’s not part of the look. He’s blushing, and I fight off an amused smile; I’m always too soft on cute people like this.
He starts to work around an answer, and I notice that he’s clutching a box of hair bleach in one hand - the kind you’d get at Walmart, which makes me wince. I’m studying to be a hairdresser, so I suppose I might be a little biased. My attention snaps back to him when he finally gets out a word.
“Um…so, you’re the one who does hair, right?” He won’t look at me, and I think I’m starting to get the picture. Oh, this is hilarious. He’s adorable.
“I do, although it’s not professional yet. Why?” I probably shouldn’t string him along like this, since I’m fairly sure I know what he’d like me to do, but I want to see him stammer some more. He’s starting to look like a tomato.
“I…could you help me…do my roots?” He jumps when I reach out to finger a lock of the blond hair, surprised at how soft it is. It’s clear he’s bleached it a few times, but it’s held up pretty well. Lucky. My hair takes to bleach about as well as straw takes to fire. Right now it’s a dark purple, but I’ve been alternating between purple and blue so I don’t have to bleach more than my roots - my hair will start falling out, otherwise.
“Sure.” I’m still dead tired - they’ve had us practicing for half the pay at little hair salons, and the hours are terrible. This is my first day off in weeks. But this little blondie is…well, he’s exactly my type, and I’m not one to waste a good opportunity. “Why can’t you do it yourself, though?” I step aside, gesturing for him to come inside. He looks surprised, although he steps past me. I notice his gaze flicker to my bare legs, and it almost makes me want to laugh - maybe I’m his type, too.
“I didn’t think you’d do it right now…” He mutters, and then, after a short hesitation, forces out his answer to my question. “My…my mom did it before now.”
Oh. My gosh. That sort of helplessness shouldn’t be attractive, but right now, it seems so impossibly endearing I can’t help but smile. “I see. Well, it is easier when someone else does it - you can leave spots, otherwise. Go ahead and sit down.” I pat a chair with a stained back, one that I’ve used for quite a while; apparently I’m very good at dyeing hair, and I’m grateful for the practice when people request my help. I want to do this professionally, after all. I wonder if this is his first time that someone other than his mother has done his hair.
“Are you alright with getting this shirt dirty?” I ask, and he pauses. I figured. With a soft laugh, I shake my head. “It’s fine, I’ll grab you one.” I set down the box of dye, heading to my dresser - it’s not the biggest room, so it’s only a few paces away. I’ve got a little table next to the cabinet, where Blondie is sitting, and a futon pressed against the far wall that I was collapsed on when he knocked. The dresser is opposite the cabinet, and when I turn back with a faded gray shirt in my hands, I see his eyes flick up and to the side. Ooh, Blondie was totally staring at my butt. And from the red on his cheeks, he’s embarrassed about it. Cute, if a little crude.
“Here.” I hand him the shirt. “So, what’s your name, Blondie? I’m Marco, although you probably knew that.” He did seek me out, after all.
He frowns. “Blondie?” I hear him mutter, and then he responds. “Jean. Like the French kind, not John.” After a slight moment of hesitation, he pulls off his shirt, and I decide to glance aside and give him a hint of privacy. He tosses his black T-shirt - some band I don’t know - to the side.
“Jean…it’s a pretty name.” I reply, sliding on the plastic gloves that came in the box and starting to mix the bleach. Shaking the bottle in one hand, I slide my fingers over the nape of his neck and the short hair of his undercut. He jumps, just enough that I can tell he did, and goosebumps rise on his skin. “Are you French?”
He nods, and when I squeeze a little bleach onto his scalp, shudders. “Cold. Yeah, I lived in France until I was ten.” I notice him clasping his hands in his lap.
“Really? You don’t have much of an accent.” Although, it’s easier to detect, now that I know he’s French.
“I already knew English when we came here. It was easy to lose the accent.” He answers. I hope I didn’t say something dumb…he doesn’t seem very irritated, but he’s probably been bugged about accents before…I decide to change the subject.
“This is a really interesting hairstyle you have, bleached on top. Have you ever considered coloring it?” He snorts a laugh, and I feel accomplished.
“Maybe. I guess I could, now that I’m in college…” He seems interested, and I’m happy to pursue it.
“Personally, I think you’d look excellent with pink. Although…” I lean around to look at him, noticing all of his awkward return when my face grows closer to his. “With those eyes and that skin tone, you can probably pull off any color you want to. Pink, blue, purple, red, even orange if you felt like it. I’ve just been wanting to do someone pink.”
He hesitates. “I…I could do pink. You’d do it for me?” I grin, the bottle of bleach making an unfortunate noise as I get the last bit of dye out of it. I rub over his roots, checking for any extra bits of brown I might have missed.
“I’d be happy to.” I tug off the gloves, adding a, “Don’t move.” Opening a cabinet above him, I reach up, pulling a cheap plastic hair net out of a bag. These work fairly well, for one-time dyes. Carefully, I maneuver it over his hair - it always tends to flop down, even the short cuts - and let the elastic rest on his forehead. “There you go! You’ll want to leave that in maybe thirty minutes, forty-five if the color is stubborn. Just rinse it out and shampoo it.” He stands up, and I wonder if I should ask him out before he leaves.
I’m torn as he picks up his shirt, but I make a decision just before he leaves the room. “If you’d like, you can come back tomorrow night and I’ll finish up with the pink. I’m…I get off at eight.” Is that too late? I don’t know his schedule.
He blinks at me for a moment, and I’m relieved to see a smile spread over his face. “It’s a date.”