This is the 18th and final part of The Colors. Here's the beginning.
The theft of Slate Gray’s lampshades qualified as intrigue and Blue, by virtue of his birth order, was ahead of the pack when it came to imagining the potential fame available to him if he moved to capitalize. When Blue announced he would be conducting an investigation into the matter, interest in the event plummeted, if for no other reason than accuracy was bound to be as much of a victim in the narrated story as the lampshades had been.
Blue largely confirmed that common sense would play little role in his findings by the manner in which he launched the investigation: He showed up at Pink’s flat in Paris with an alleged list of questions as to her whereabouts at the time of the theft. The official reason for Blue’s visit was to ask questions. The real reason for his visit was to blend, a fact immediately obvious to Pink.
The thought of blending with Blue again released that river of beautiful poppycock intimating they would end up together, and Pink understood the powerful opportunity she was receiving in the way of shaping her destiny with this decision. Pink wanted so badly to live in that beautiful flood of poppycock and blend with Blue, but she couldn’t find herself in that hurtful place again and its associated recovery time. When Pink informed the doorman to turn Blue away, Blue was stunned. Pink had chosen wisely and was beginning a new leg in her journey seeking happiness, and no one was happier for Pink than Ultra Pink who received news of Pink’s turning Blue away from Pink herself phoning for the first time in weeks.
News of Blue’s attempt to interview Pink over the lampshades spread and everyone understood Blue’s motivation. Of course, it was heavy criticism accusing Blue of using the pretext of an illegitimate investigation to try and blend with Pink, and Blue perhaps rightly denied it was true, although it was true and everyone knew it was true but no one cared, except Blue who thought everyone cared. The real crime of Blue’s investigation wasn’t his immoral behavior. The spectators were used to that. The real crime centered around giving attention to Blue’s alleged investigation instead of focusing on Slate Gray's coming out of nowhere to garner the approval of colors everywhere. Slate Gray had leadership abilities, it was agreed. But one must remember that Slate Gray was an artist. He gave a glimpse behind the scenes of society and gained fame but pulling back that curtain can be risky business, or so artists may claim. And now Slate Gray was retired from that sort of thing. He was going to enjoy the rest of his life in private and no one was going to fault him for such an attitude, except perhaps Electric Pink.
Without Slate Gray as a leader, the colors were forced to endure the entertainment of Blue’s investigation, a gift to Red and burden to helpless spectators. So Blue was presented with a fresh round of boos and suggestions to retire to his mountaintop, prompting Blue to go into what was clearly a rehearsed response to criticism in general.
Perhaps speaking of brewing criticism, this writer would like to make mention of the length of this final chapter and narrative to follow and assure the reader it was approved not to annoy, although annoyance is a likely reaction, but because the end of the first age of the colors cannot be told without summarizing a disagreement between Blue and Powder Blue over who was more unappealing. Blue was feeling especially down after his blending debacle with Red and what he considered a sure thing at Pink’s, leaving Storm Gray to take Blue out with the intention of perking up his mood.
Storm Gray brought Blue to an after party at Tangerine’s place, but Blue was reluctant to enter and confessed to Storm Gray outside that he didn’t want to be turned away at the door as he was feeling especially toxic. Storm Gray just shrugged and slapped Blue on the shoulder and waltzed right into Tangerine’s place to nothing but smiles and big hellos, and when Blue heard the big hellos and witnessed the smiles, he feared they were putting on airs, so he was very polite and generally quiet and even guarded, and things seemed to proceed nicely because when Blue concentrates on being polite he isn’t so captive to his jackass tendencies.
It so happened that Powder Blue was in attendance at Tangerine’s party. When Powder Blue saw Blue, he approached and launched into his grievances. Few colors in attendance would claim Powder Blue was not motivated by the audience he was gaining.
What made the onslaught so very gruesome, it was later agreed, was Blue’s reluctance to engage, for he was continuing what was at first his successful guarded interaction with others.
The fact was, Blue couldn’t believe his luck. He was welcomed into this cool after party with all sorts of colors all over the place and Blue was happy – legitimately happy – to say hello to other colors while he passed in and out of rooms so there was no pressure to keep up a conversation. It was this rich social experience that would fuel Blue’s resurrection. Blue knew this to be true. And then a certain outrageous prick gets in his face and starts barking.
According to Powder Blue, Blue’s first disappearance meant that others, notably Powder Blue, had to “step up” into a leadership position, which Powder Blue was not constructed to do. Nevertheless, he had done it. And that showed the lengths to which he, as well as Royal Blue for that matter, would go for the benefit of the herd. And where was Blue? Off scratching his ass, that’s where.
Powder Blue felt his reputation rebuilt with every verbal bomb he dropped on Blue in front of this clearly hip crowd. So bombs away was the motto of Powder Blue at Tangerine’s.
Blue watched Powder Blue approach the line of regrettable behavior, cross it, and keep going. Blue felt the surging urge to respond without going off like a firecracker and so, without raising his voice, without theatrics and ultimatums, Blue said, “At least I took my lumps.”
Well, Powder Blue let Blue walk away, and that was because Powder Blue needed to concentrate while quelling a facial tick that erupted following Blue’s spot-on remark. As it happens, the cure for quieting the facial tick was becoming angry at Blue.
Powder Blue found Blue in the kitchen chatting with Evergreen and a smattering of other colors opening cabinets and the refrigerator to see what was available for consumption. Blue glanced at Powder Blue, forgot what he was saying to Evergreen as he registered Powder Blue’s presence but then quickly returned to his point in conversation and kept his eyes away from Powder Blue, who was basically boring holes in the side of Blue’s face. Not looking at someone staring at you is mighty difficult, especially when the lovely Evergreen can’t help but notice, and so Blue, buzzed and fatigued and also on stage in front of a pretty color, located Powder Blue a mere couple feet away and, feeling better that Storm Gray was nearby, said, “What’s your problem?”
This was exactly the invitation Powder Blue was looking for. Powder Blue stepped snuggly up to Blue, which brought Storm Gray and Tropical Blue into the mix and caused Evergreen to be edged aside. Words followed, mostly along the line of who was the biggest piece of poop. Powder Blue shocked everyone by challenging Blue to step outside. Unfortunately, Yellow had left for home earlier in the evening, but other colors, led by Tangerine, attempted to mediate and said there would be no violence. However, Powder Blue’s constant pointing to the door without anyone else taking charge caused the colors to inevitably look to Blue as to whether he would accept this challenge or not, and finally, feeling the pressure, Blue did accept the challenge. Outside, Powder Blue put Blue away and it wasn’t even close. Blue had raised his hands in an effort to mimic a traditional sparring position but he was run over roughshod. So Blue had taken his lumps from Red and now he had taken them from Powder Blue. That’s what Powder Blue said while Blue was on the ground collecting himself.
Tangerine alternately held an ice pack to Blue’s eyes and nose with the most loving touch in the privacy of her bedroom for 45 minutes afterward. Blue, with his head on her lap, gazed upward through his black eyes, wondering if this maze of life was all about getting bounced around here and there, taking his lumps, making plays for the wrong colors until, finally, he finds her here, applying ice to his busted face. Blue, arguably at the low point in his lowly career as firstborn, unwittingly defined the first age of the colors with a remark intended to do nothing but tactically facilitate blending with Tangerine at a later date. What Blue said and Tangerine subsequently repeated to everyone was: Generally speaking, the colors can be divided into those who use ass whoopins' and their threat as a tool of interaction, including those who condone them, and those who are blessed and know better, or are weak.
It was observed by many that Green originally provided the insight long ago but likely out of sympathy for Blue’s busted face he was given official credit. Perhaps the most accurate way to describe Blue's role is that he brought the message to the masses. In this writer's opinion, the first age of the colors closed about the time Blue was off baking cupcakes through black eyes while White was sought out for his opinion on such a broad theory and, after blending with Tangerine and bragging about it, White added as a caveat that Blue’s worldview was indeed overly simple but at the same time not necessarily inaccurate.