via Daily Prompt: Eyes
“Beautiful beautiful brown eyes,
Beautiful beautiful brown eyes,
Beautiful beautiful brown eyes,
I’ll never love blue eyes again.”
And so goes an old song I found in one of my piano music books.
I don’t know when I began to prefer brown eyes over blue, but it had to have been some point during my college days. Somewhere along the line, I decided that brown eyes were beautiful, mysterious, and adventurous. I suspect that may be because I have blue eyes, my parents have blue eyes, my brothers have blue eyes, and seemingly 90% of my extended family have blue eyes. Blue eyes, to me, are just commonplace and boring.
But brown eyes, to me, are exotic. A man with brown eyes and dark brown or black hair immediately captures my attention, and I want to get to know him, to see what is hidden in the depths of his dark eyes.
I’ve noticed that many of the male characters in my stories ultimately have brown eyes and brown or black hair. However, I have widened my scope a bit when it comes to describing those eyes.
In The Newbie and School Spirits, two of my male characters–both of whom hold a certain attraction for Kyrie Carter–have brown eyes. Gabe Petery and Spook Steele are both brown-eyed, brown-haired, handsome men, but their personalities are very different, and I wanted to convey that somehow by their physical descriptions.
Gabe is an easygoing, sensitive, open individual who often seems to not have a care in the world. He is easy to get to know, and his kindness extends to everyone he meets.
Spook, on the other hand, is standoffish, abrasive, and somewhat secretive. At times, he carries the weight of the world on his shoulders, and it’s obvious to Kyr that he either harbors some deep hurt, or he’s just a jerk.
So how do their eyes portray this? One of my favorite descriptions of Gabe’s eyes comes at the beginning of The Newbie, shortly after Kyr meets him for the first time. She had thought he simply had dark brown eyes, but up close, there’s much more to them than she saw on TV:
He laughed at his own joke, and I looked up and found myself staring into his eyes. On TV, his brown eyes looked almost black, but in person and up close, they were the deep golden brown of a strong cup of tea. I was a coffee drinker, but I couldn’t help thinking that I’d gladly trade my cup of Joe for a cup of Lipton if it reminded me of Gabe’s eyes.
Spook’s eyes don’t get as much descriptive treatment, at least not with their color. There are several times, however, where Kyr notices the hurt in his eyes when she tosses a barb at him, and there are times when he seems to be opening up or looking at her with interest or even affection, and suddenly his expression shifts to indifference. Kyr is one who wears her heart on her sleeve, and she’s an easy read, even when she tries to hide her feelings, so Spook’s ability to turn his emotions on and off baffles her. One of my favorite scenes in School Spirits is the one where JoEllyn get Kyr all gussied up for dinner with the team. Spook comes in and sees Kyr looking uncharacteristically feminine. He’s about to comment when he realizes they aren’t alone:
The door opened, and Spook’s voice joked, “Why, Kyr, you dared to leave the door unlocked? Aren’t you afraid…?” His words trailed off as he caught sight of me and froze, mouth agape. His eyes swept over me appreciatively. He smiled softly and was about to say something when JoEllyn giggled, drawing attention to herself. Seeing that we weren’t alone, his expression immediately became unreadable. Then noticing that JoEllyn was dressed up too, he smiled and teased, “Oh, I get it. You girls are playing dress up.”
There will be other instances of characters’ eyes revealing insights about their personalities in later books. In Book 3, Witch of Willow Lake, readers will be introduced to some very evil characters with very unique eyes.