wednesdays at three thirty
Everyone sees the world in black and white until they meet their soulmate. But James works in a coffee shop, and every time he sees colour there’s an annoying customer there too (AKA a coffee shop and soulmate au fic in one because i have no chill).
“One frozen mocha to go!”
It’s second nature to him now, as quick and easy as breathing. In one swift movement, James grabs hold of the milk carton, ready to pour it into the blender. He hears the door to the cafe open, a chilly breeze ruthlessly following a handful of students who scrabble inside as it begins to rain.
It’s then that it happens. The milk drops to the floor as he stares, perplexed, at the colour of his hand. It’s like the weight of an avalanche crumbles on top of him, an invisible weight pressing hard on his shoulders. Before he even realises, his legs are like jelly and he’s falling.
“James? Are you alright?” a voice asks.
He feels a hand pressed against his back, the sound of someone’s concerned voice muffled against his ear. He tries to say something, but all he can manage is an intense gasp for air as his legs shake once more.
He can see.
Not that he couldn’t before… but he can see.
Colours are everywhere, blinding and intense. They’re beautiful, so vibrant that it’s making his head spin.
He’s staring at white tiles, chestnut coloured cabinets. It feels like he’s on fire and, more than anything, he wishes he could stand, to just look around the place to see who is making him like this.
Of course, he’s read the stories like everyone else. Lullabies that dated back long before they even had a name. Fairy-tales of people who, like everyone else, saw the world in a lens, the colour of life squeezed out. There was only one person who could help to retrieve that colour back into your life.
James blinks, his heart now slowing to a calm, even beat. He breathes in deeply, relishing the peaceful feeling that washes over him. The owner of the hand speaks again and rubs the place between his shoulder blades tentatively, asking if he needs an ambulance.
He shakes his head, finally looking up at Remus.
“Can you stand?” Remus asks, taking hold of James’ shaking hand and pulling him to his feet. He wobbles for a split second and reaches out to grasp hold of the counter with both arms. His fingers grip onto the support for dear life.
He swallows, a nauseating bubble rippling throughout his intestines and threatening to shoot up his throat. He breathes in, counting to ten. Slow and easy, he finally manages to pull his eyes away from the wooden counter and cautiously glances around cafe.
The colours are dazzling; blues, reds, greens, all different shades and intensities. They’re all so vivid and intense that it feels like the ground’s shaking beneath him. The place is heaving with students, all wet due to the unexpected stormy April shower and James tries to look at as many as he can, searching desperately for someone who seems just as unsettled and surprised as him.
Everyone seems normal. How can that be? Colour’s just flown into every crevice of their being… and they don’t care?
There are too many voices, people ordering, grabbing their coffees and other beverages and talking aimlessly with one another. Amidst the chatter and the whirring noises from the coffee machines, the sound of the door opening reaches his ears. A freezing wind enters, the chilly kind that makes the hairs on his arms stand up on edge.
And then, just like that, his world is drained of colour.