*read all of the chapters for Swipe Right – The Chronicles of an Unpaid Prostitute in order here
I realized I needed to kiss a lot of frogs before I found my prince and I wasn’t going to give up because of bank robbers or guys who couldn’t afford their own groceries. Although I’d never met so many entrepreneurs in my life. Everyone was an entrepreneur these days – the club promoters, the MLM companies, the sub-contractors; what they didn’t realize was being an entrepreneur wasn’t impressive anymore if you still lived with Mommy in her basement and she did your laundry.
Before we’d even gone out, I’d received a text message: Send me a good night pic, babe.
Clearing my throat, I started my reply: I’m sure asshole is one of your best qualities, unfortunately I’ve reached my quota… for my life, but good luck to you and sweet dreams.
Sunday evening my sexter was back and oh what a joyous night it had become. Closing my bedroom door, I locked it behind me and got comfortable on my bed. Let the festivities begin. I loved the mystery, the taboo behind it all. And when I started to receive intimate photos of him, I did something I never thought I would do. I saved them in my phone for tougher times to come. It was a pathetic move, but necessary. In turn, the combination of his words and my hand were some of the best sexual encounters of my life.
Tuesday night was dedicated to Zack. He took me to an art gallery and showed me how bougie he was as he described each painting with an air of confidence. Naturally I dropped my panties for him. Well I would have had I been wearing any. It was very hard to resist all that education packed into a well fitted pressed suit. I would have told him that we didn’t even need to go to the gallery, but he wanted to show off and I wanted to let him. The suit and education were stripped away and replaced by a mattress on the floor. On the floor. Well, this was a new one for me. It got worse. Anticipated excitement filled me as he moved to stand and pulled me so I was sitting on the edge of the bed. And then it happened. He slapped me. In the face. With his dick. WITH HIS DICK. “Now tell me you want it, dirty girl.”
I was shocked and horrified then outraged all in the matter of one second. When he moved to do it again, I grabbed his wrist and raised an eyebrow. “Come on babe, we’re just having some fun, go with it.”
“I’m not, nor will I ever be going with you slapping me. With anything.”
“Are you sure? It’s a huge turn on for me.”
“Okay. Lay back, let Daddy take a good look at you.” Oh god, I couldn’t do this.
“How about less talking. Quiet time, now.”
But he didn’t listen. Daddy didn’t listen. “Tell me how much you like it.”
What if I didn’t like it? Why do guys always assume? “Um…”
“Wait for it… wait for it. Oh god, you’re so dirty. I’m going to come. Get ready, get ready. Get on your knees, I want to come on your face.”
Oh hell no! I pushed him off me, grabbed my jeans and left, shoes in hand. I heard him calling after me, I didn’t stop. I ran for the damn hills. Holy sweet baby Jesus hell.
I met Ben for a lunch meeting at a new restaurant downtown. He was still tense and stuffy, maybe his pants were too tight. We talked about my progress and any changes he wanted to make. As he excused himself to use the restroom, I checked my phone in an effort to make it seem like I wasn’t sitting at the table alone, like one does, when I saw I had an unexpected text message. It was a one liner from the person I was least expecting, my dad. ‘I’m going to be in town, let me know when you’re free.’ I was still staring at the screen when Ben came back. It was becoming clear I was terrible at hiding my feelings.
“Hey, everything okay?”
“Yeah,” I started. Then shook my head, “no,” I admitted. I found myself suddenly telling him my entire sad, sordid life story. Well a condensed version, anyways. I looked up at him and he was looking at me with a sympathetic smile and it was then I realized I’d crossed a line. This wasn’t any of Ben’s business nor did he need or want to be hearing about any of my family drama. I cleared my throat, and dutifully apologized before changing the subject immediately hoping he would play along and pretend I didn’t just lose my mind.
His profile said he was twenty nine, tall with dark hair and blue eyes. When I gave him my phone number he called me. He actually called me. We had a real conversation, over the phone, not through emoji’s or dick pics, it was a revelation. He asked me out and I agreed. And he was really cute. Sitting across from him, I ordered a dirty martini and he ordered… a coke. “You’re not drinking?” I dared to ask.
“Can I ask why?” He only shrugged. I wasn’t used to guys not drinking on a date, usually it was a competition to see who had the best beer goggles. It was refreshing. He was sweet and almost innocent and I agreed to go back to his place. Because what was I going to say? No? Laughable. It was becoming clear I didn’t know how to use that word. He opened my door and took my hand and I was almost smitten as he caressed my palm with his thumb until I looked up and read the sign that read Welcome to San Francisco University. I felt my steps falter. Oh god, maybe he was just a really old student, or he was an RA or maybe he worked here, please let him work here. “Are you a professor?”
He looked at me, an entire array of emotions flashed through his eyes. “Um, no.”
“Teachers assistant?” When he didn’t answer, I felt myself start to panic. “RA? Janitor?”
“No, I’m a student,” he admitted. He stopped and I pulled my hand away. “Alright, I’m not quite 29.”
“Not quite,” I repeated. “What exactly does ‘not quite’ mean?” I could see him contemplating his answer. “What year are you in?”
“What?” he asked, confused.
“What year of university are you in?”
“First?” I yelled. “So that makes you…”
“18,” he said, finishing my sentence.
I felt like I needed to put my hands on my knees, oxygen seemingly lax in this moment. “Um. Okay,” I started, rationalizing out loud. “When did you turn 18, like are you almost 19?” I don’t know why this question made sense or mattered but nothing made sense to me in this moment.
“A couple weeks ago, I skipped grade ten, I’m really smart.” He was talking really fast, no doubt feeding off my sheer horror with every word he spoke.
“What the fuck, dude?”
“I like to date older women,” he tried to explain. “And when they find out my age they think I’m too young.”
“Yeah no fucking kidding. Jesus, you’re two weeks older than a fifteen year prison sentence.” I ran my fingers through my hair feeling sick and old.
“Did you want to still come in?” he asked quietly.
I looked up at him. “Is that a serious question?” He nodded. “No,” I answered, slowly, “I don’t want to fuck you in your dorm room.” I turned and walked away. I needed a taxi, and a drink.
Luckily my friends were lushes and I met them for drinks after dropping the child off at home. I told them my embarrassing story and while they laughed, and cried, literal tears streaming down their faces at my circumstance, I found myself in a state of intoxication beyond what would be considered acceptable by a man who I was sure would look completely different if I were sober. Needless to say, I woke up in his bed. The next morning. Shit!
“Good morning, beautiful,” he greeted, cupping my cheek. No. Nope, I couldn’t do this. “So I was thinking, you, me, dinner tonight.”
“No,” I moaned.
“No, you’re busy tonight? Okay then, tomorrow night. And I was thinking, if you’re free on Sunday, my mom always does Sunday dinner at her place. The entire family shows up, it’s great. I’d love for you to come.”
“What? No. I gotta go.” Scrambling out of the bed, I bolted for the front door, rolling my eyes at the five inch heels that I chose to wear last night. Great choice, Maddie. How the hell are you supposed to run away in these? Oh god, these were not sober shoes. Why did I own these? I wondered what my chances were of getting hepatitis if I walked down the street in my bare feet. Flats were underrated.
“Hey, where are you going? I need to get your number so we can set up our next date. And let me know if your schedule opens up for the weekend. I really think my mom would love you.” I was still half drunk and I had a stage five clinger on my hands.
“I’ll call you,” I promised. It was one I would break.
“But you don’t have my number!” he called after me as I walked outside, the morning sun burning my retina’s. I waved my hand over my shoulder and performed my best Olympic speed walk in one of the sluttiest outfits I owned. Karma, that’s what I got for breaking my sleepover rule – the ultimate walk of shame and a horrendous hangover.
*tomorrow – Chapter Fourteen