S O U L M A T E S –

She is twelve. He is fourteen.

Her parents own a patisserie on the end of Market Street. Each day, she eats the cinnamon buns her father is famous for and never gets tired of them. She brandishes needles at the "popular girls" in the cafeteria - knitting needles, that is. Her current creation, a Monaco scarf, will be a peace offering to her new stepsister.

He wants to be a writer, even after his third-grade teacher said that career was for "soft-minded" men. He listens to Elbow and the Czars as well as other obscure, holier-than-thou bands, introduced to him by an avuncular family friend who owns an independent record label. He attends church once a week, although he's not sure why he likes his pastor more than the members of his youth group.

She wants to be a vegetarian, but her mother won't let her, saying that because of her condition, she needs the protein. She feels like Lisa Simpson every time she has chicken soup, so she makes her parents buy cage free eggs. She also wants to dye her hair russet to replace the standard coffee brown, but her mother won't let her do that either, except she doesn't have a plausible retort for this one.

He hates autumn; despite the kaleidoscope of leaves, to him it symbolizes the process of dying. He's not clingy but likes to hold onto his memories of summer, when the breeze was carelessly tickling his earlobes. He likes tropical fruits, and other foods that are cut into symmetrical shapes. He is introspective and hates talking on the phone.

She still believes in faeries, but she wanted to cry when a pair of wings appeared on her nose and cheeks after an afternoon lazing at the beach. Because of this, she no longer goes outside in fear of triggering her butterfly rash, and is self-conscious of her unnaturally pale complexion.

He isn't sure why he hasn't had a haircut in ten months, but he showers compulsively every morning since the kid who sits in front of him in homeroom always smells like yesterday's egg sandwich. He thinks his current lion's mane is a testimony of his father's death, since his father was picking him up from the hairdresser's the evening some inebriated fathead crashed into his Acura.

She likes to sing in the shower since the bathroom has the best acoustics, and does pirouettes with the drops of water whirling off her skin. Sometimes, she lets her 6-year-old brother beat her in Chinese checkers.

He can tell you the origin of all the nursery rhymes, like how Baa Baa Black Sheep was an early complaint about taxes. He sorts all his m&ms by colour (in order of the rainbow) before eating them. He owns a unicycle.

Right now, they live 1618.03 miles apart. They'll meet twelve years later, in the cereal aisle at a ShopRite when they both reach for the Lucky Charms.