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To other people, he was always gold. Shining with a blinding brilliance that left those who followed after him in his shadow. He was the sun that captured hearts and minds with charisma and an easy smile - but to me - my best friend was always Opal.

Opal had depth that gold simply did not. Gold was two dimensional in its brilliance, and limited in its value. Gold was overused, cliche and overrated; in essence - gold was everything Opal was not.

Opal was iridescent. Multi-coloured, and forever changing, always moulding himself to show people the side of him best suited. He was a people pleaser, but just like the gemstone that was his namesake - no one truly saw Opal enough to appreciate more than what the surface portrayed.

To others he was simply beautiful, desirable and unattainable - to others he was simply a being to be lusted after and pursued. But to me, Opal was more than that - to truly see him was an honor, because in every different pigment he possessed, there was a story that most didn’t have the privilege of knowing.

In the light from the sun, and those who used him to boost their own happiness, Opal always shone with luminous yellows and greens - he fed each person the colour they required, until that very pigment was lost to him.

This luminous yellow was the shade he was best known for, the green a shade that he used to give comfort, he was warm in this light, caring and kind - and he seeked to put others before him regardless of the price. This yellow shone the brightest, and it drained him of the most energy - but never did people acknowledge the consequence of their dependency.

In the darkness, and the night - to those who used him for personal gain, to those who seeked to illuminate him only when they themselves were absent of all chromaticity - he glowed violets, and blues.

Ultramarine, cyan and arctic; for he was more vibrant than merely cobalt or the aqua associated with Indigo. His blue tones spoke volumes, they portrayed novels of emotions, all coming down to the essence of what others desired . Those who saw his blue needed his advice or his help - from him they took a sample of each colour until he was all drained out.

Those who saw amethyst, lilac and lavender, all seeked power and personal growth and development.

Always Opal gave - he never questioned his worth, the complexion of his soul decreed that this was the purpose he was given on this earth. And yet through it all he kept that authentic opalescent aura, the very thing that made him who he was.

I watched Opal grow, from a boy into a man - and I saw the weight of the world that he was made to carry. He felt a responsibility that was seen in the faint umber of his soul, a responsibility that few ever noticed. The umber burnt fiercely, igniting an orange fire, until Opal was aglow with the seven colours of a rainbow.

At this point, I stood back and watched Opal transcend, he became pearlescent and prismatic, as he shook off his grey toned shackles, and became a force to be reckoned with through concentrating his energy within.

Opal became my hope, the very thing that kept me breathing - in the simplest terms; Opal saved my life. Opal gave me a home, he gave me a belonging I’d always lusted after; without meaning to Opal made me whole.

From him I learnt patience, through watching him deal with those who used him - he taught me compassion in the way he always gave without question. Opal was so much more than just an iridescent source of wonder - to me he was the start of a family that would become stronger than my own.

Where everyone else saw what they needed, I saw my best friend - I saw the colours that others weren’t ready to believe in.

Some call him gold, but to me he has always been Opal - because gold cannot describe the wings of an angel.

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