Date Anxiety – Lauren Thurman


After the dinner and the drinks and the dessert and the timidly probing small talk, he walked her home. She had found nothing seriously repellent about him, so when they came to her door she invited him in. He looked at her CD collection while she opened a bottle of [wine / brandy].

“Do you listen to anything besides Beck?” he asked.

“Sometimes I sit by my window and listen to traffic ambiance,” she said.

She brought their glasses to the sofa, handed him his, and they sat and sipped in silence for [a short moment / a few minutes].

He said, “[I had a wonderful time tonight / you’re really very lovely], you know.”

She said, “Thank you, [so did I / you’re very kind].”

He put his arm [around her shoulder / on her knee] and muttered some clumsy sweet nothings, while she tried to formulate a polite way to say “[I’d really rather just get on with the sex / You’re kind of creeping me out].”

She turned her head to [kiss him / check the clock] and heard, in her ear, “[You / You’ll] taste exquisite.”

She [drew away from / turned back towards] him and said, “Really? That’s the [cheesiest / creepiest] thing I’ve ever heard.”

He smiled a little sheepishly. “Sorry, I haven’t done this in awhile. Do you want to [slow down / take your shirt off]?”

“No, thanks,” she said, although she guessed she had to appreciate his manners. “More [wine / brandy]?”

When she came back to the living room, he looked a little [more / less] relaxed. She handed him his glass, but he set it down on the coffee table and instead [resumed kissing her, this time with a little more pizzazz / pulled a large, clear syringe from his coat pocket].

She [suggested they go to her bedroom / asked what the hell that was], and he stood up and [followed / stepped toward] her.

He [coaxed off her dress / told her to hushhhh] and [kissed her sternum / plunged the syringe into her neck]. She [allowed herself a sigh / tried to scream but couldn’t], finding that she was [actually having a decent time / quite paralyzed from whatever the fuck he had given her]. Slowly, expertly, he [kind of, sort of blew her mind / laid her on her kitchen table and gingerly butchered her with her own knife]. By the end of the night she was [sprawled in a sweaty, sated heap at the foot of her bed / in tiny pieces in little plastic bags, laid out in neat rows in the kitchen], and if she had still been [awake / alive], she might have said something about this being the [best / worst] first date she’d had, probably ever.

Lauren Thurman is a recent graduate from the University of Colorado-Boulder, with a degree in English lit. She wrote her undergraduate thesis on homoerotic fan fiction, and is very interested in the hijacking of stories. IN her spare time, she writes music, watches Parks & Rec, and thinks about dragons. You can find her on Twitter @LN_Thurman where she tries to be funny. This is Lauren’s first publication. 

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