Part 8 in 2015's writing experiment.
It was usually the eyes that got him first. Shining in the dark. From the eyes he could start to make out the rest of the face. The distinguishing marks. The creases. The signs that a life had been lived. That experiences had been felt, and feelings timely felt.
He made judgements based on these observations, and they were not always right. Were they useful? Only as a starting point. A stake in the ground to start the negotiations. Starting and stating was as important an act as any, even if he got it wrong. He knew his thought process well enough to be aware and flexible in his judgements and quickly formed conclusions.
He would then make his second move, towards the face, the person actually. Sometimes physical movement. Sometimes through words. Always with compassion and gentleness. And humility.
As his words were slowly received by the recipient they would gently become receptive, disarmed even. The shape of their face would change; tension would be removed. They may even start to speak. To reveal a little of their truth. The fact was the journey was usually long; the journey to trust. And it was never fully arrived at. But bit by bit they would open up. Reveal. Expose.
A remarkable thing would start to happen during this process. People's faces would drastically change. It was not a physical change. Or perhaps it was. Sometimes people started twitching less. Allowed their smiles to appear with less constraint, less consideration. Tension would lift from their eyebrows and forehead. It was an actual physical change.
The change he noticed most was more about how he understood their face. The grooves, twitches, bumps. As people talked, the story of their faces made sense and became rich and deep. He developed affection for them. Their faces became beautiful as they revealed themselves. They may have been attractive or unattractive, it did not matter. As much as they were willing to reveal themselves, and connect with him, was the level to which their beauty came forth.