Originally written for the Durarara kink meme for a prompt for a Shizuo/Izaya fic where Izaya is responsible for Shizuo's dye job. Some edits (less awkward word choices and whatnot) have been made between the two versions. How I end up writing for pairings I don't actually ship, I'll never know. It's more of a slight, one-sided Izaya → Shizuo anyways, so whatever.
You know what's (not) fun? Trying to figure out why there's a gender difference between blonde/brunette and blond/brunet. Oh, English and your confusing, arbitrary rules.
Though Shizuo probably didn't remember it, the first day of high school was actually not the first time he and Izaya had met.
It wasn't surprising that Shizuo had forgotten, though. Not just because the brute was stupid and probably couldn't remember all that much to begin with, but because there was almost nothing to remember about it.
The meeting itself, that is. The aftermath was quite memorable, although Izaya doubted that Shizuo ever realized that they were connected.
Some time, late in their second year of middle school, Shinra had shown him a photo of Shizuo that he took during the Golden Week of the same year - a silly attempt to show that the superhuman boy that he regularly rambled on about (almost as much as he gushed about that house-guest-slash-"future bride" of his, even) actually existed. It was an image of a lanky brunet with some stop sign that he had supposedly uprooted. Only there was something wrong with the film or the lighting, so he was more of a lanky blond.
A few days later, Izaya happened to cross paths with the lanky and unexpectedly brunet boy in the photo while he was killing time in one of Ikebukuro's arcades. Izaya was bored, so he decided to approach him. This was their conversation in its entirety:
"Hey, are you Heiwajima Shizuo?"
"...Why do you care?"
"Heard about you from a friend. Thought you were blond, though."
"Well, I'm not."
"Too bad. You would look better as a blond. It would go with your complexion more. My uncle's a television makeup artist, so I know this sort of thing."
"You're pissin' me off. Go away."
And so he did.
Though Izaya usually made a point of lying whenever he could, he didn't during that conversation. Mostly. The thing about his uncle was complete bullshit, but he really did think that Shizuo would be more handsome as a blond. That's why he broke into his house two weeks later and replaced his shampoo with a powerful bleaching agent.
Well, it was part of the reason. You couldn't expect a proper dye-job from just shampooing hydrogen peroxide for five minutes, after all (Shizuo's hair turned out more orange than anything). Really, he just wanted to see the reaction. He was definitely not disappointed.
Though that shower stall landed a bit too close to his hiding spot for him to follow up on that particular social experiment of his. It looked like Shinra wasn't lying after all. He owed the weirdo an apology – which he wasn't actually ever going to give, of course.
It wasn't until another year and a half that Izaya got to see the results properly, when Shinra formally introduced him to the monster on their first day of high school. Shizuo didn't keep Izaya's impromptu bleach job. He improved on it with a rather professional-looking one. He even managed to remember the eyebrows. Izaya spent a good half minute studying the unexpected fruits of his trolling before Shizuo punched the bleachers out from under him.
Izaya never brought up the subject, then or in any of their subsequent scuffles, but Shizuo really did look better as a blond.