The Catch

Because I’m a gold-digging sapiosexual, I swipe based on credentials rather than appearance. Aaron’s are panty dropping: dual MBA and MD degree– dermatologist doing his residency. What’s more: he’s not bad looking, just abnormally pale. But he’s also a ginger, so it kind of makes sense.

He messages me first: Am I into older guys then? I guess so! Is he into younger girls? Absolutely. It allows him to be more dominant. He likes that.

He’s one of those BDSM types. I do some research on The Google, and the idea grows on me. All this time I’ve been surreptitiously submissive, wondering why I feel empty and unfulfilled. The last time I had sex, the precarious pussy kept asking if I was ok, and his uncertainty killed my libido faster than the idea of my parents screwing. I want to be used and abused Goddamnit! Is that too much to ask? This is my destiny, and Aaron is leading me there.

We agree we want to meet, but first he offers full disclosure: an infected bat bit him when he was 7 (long, crazy story), which left him with Vampirism. It’s totally under control though! He’s on antivirals and synthetic blood supplements. But he understands if I’m not interested—no hard feelings. I thank him for letting me know, but I could care less; it doesn’t matter! In fact, it’s all the more impressive he overcame such hurdles to get to where he is now. He explains his incident played a major role in his desire to study medicine. He wants to help people. No wonder you were accepted to such a difficult med school; your personal essay must’ve fucking slayed. 9 p.m. at O’Neill’s then? Works for me!

My brother wants to watch Twinsters on Netflix.

Dude—I think I found my soul mate on Tinder. I’m going to meet him like now.

He scrolls through Aaron’s profile. Holy shit Emma—a dermatologist? He must be wicked smart. And he’s like pretty good-looking. Gayyyyyyyyyy. I know you are, but what am I?

There’s one thing though—he got Vampirism when he was a kid—bit by a bat. What do you think of that? My brother winces. There’s always a catch isn’t there. But I mean if you’re comfortable with it, go for it I guess? Just be safe? My friend’s cousin went on a cruise in like 2000 to Alaska and got Vampirism. Now he’s happily married with two kids. From sperm donors obviously, but they’re like totally happy.

I nod a lot. Yeah it’s really no big deal. I get ready to leave. See you later. Yeah see you. I’ll probably be back at like—eleven. Ok yeah.

I’m running ten minutes late because the 1 train took forever. Sorry! He responds: we’ll have to work on that.

I find him easily because 1) the bar is nearly empty (Sunday night) and 2) he’s really fucking pale, like practically translucent. I love meeting someone for the first time because they observe you more astutely than they ever will. Is this person worth my time? I’m suddenly paranoid he wants to eat me.

I shake his hand. It’s colder than Ayn Rand’s heart. Usually when I touch a guy for the first time he feels warm, and I am able to assert my feminine nature by showing off my poor circulation. It’s flirtatious really. It’s like heyyy I’m so cold and weak and you’re so warm and protective protect me please! Not this dude though. I’m not sure I like it.

We sip on Guinness, and I observe his face. He has good features: green-blue eyes, intelligent mouth, and slightly receding hairline. He’s from Michigan. We small talk about life in Manhattan, and I feel myself withdrawing.

He transitions to the juicy stuff: the mechanisms of sub-dom. I force myself to ask questions because he wants me to ask questions. He goes through basic punishments, rewards, safe-words and the importance of de-briefing. I can’t imagine being dominated by Aaron. He’s sick for Christ’s sake. This kink does not spur from hedonism or lust but an inferiority complex. I can’t help but find myself psychoanalyzing the poor guy. His disease makes him feel out of control, so he’s obsessed with taking it back via sexual dominance.

He asks if I want to go back to his apartment (it’s a couple of blocks away), and it pains me to turn him down. I’m temporarily living with my brother at the moment, and I told him I’d be home before ten. Are you sure? I’m sure.

I’m sorry I’m sorry I’m sorry. I offer to split the check, but he insists on paying. Can I see you again? I think this would be really fun for you.

Sure! I lie, because I’m too weak at the moment to inflict further pain on this already suffering creature. He leans in for a kiss, and I stand there paralyzed. It’s not a peck either. There’s even some tongue. I know you can’t contract vampirism through saliva, but I’m horrified anyways. I try to be subtle when I pull away—I try to smile, but it cracks.

My brother is watching that annoying show Master of None when I get home. Wow—you’re early—how was it? Oh my God Kevin. I start pacing. It was fucking awful. You don’t even know. Like I just couldn’t see past the Vampirism. I’m such a fucking asshole! It’s not even his fault.

Hey take it easy, he offers. You can’t help what you’re attracted to. You’re not a bad person. Stop beating yourself up.

What if you met a cool, awesome girl with Vampirism? Would you go for it or..?

It doesn’t take him long to respond. Well I mean, if I was already in love with her—like dating her seriously—and she got infected, I would be more likely to stay, you know? But if I’m just meeting her… I mean… there’re so many other girls out there who aren’t vampires. Hey don’t look so distressed—

But how do I turn him down? He thinks we’re meeting again.

Kevin unpeels a banana. I’m sure he’s used to it. He’ll survive.

I sink into the couch. Life is so brutal. Imagine having Vampirism—the stigma, the isolation. How can he not be depressed? That must fucking suck.

Kevin chews. Yeah people are pretty strong. I mean what other choice does he have?

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