What the hell does she want?! My ex-girlfriend (Exgf) only initiates contact with people when she wants something from them. Does she want me back? Not a hope in hell. It’s been over a year without any kind of contact between us and I want to keep it that way. As I sit staring at her message on my phone I realize that it’s in my interest to talk to her because I still have a lot of money invested in the house she’s living in. I want that money back. Fuck it, I have to talk to her.
It’s a beautifully warm July Saturday afternoon as I arrive at the same pub where we had met for our very first date more than six years ago. She suggested this venue and it made me laugh. I’ve come to talk about the future of what used to be our home, but I know her, there’s always something else going on in the background with her.
As I get out my car I sense her looking at me. She’s sitting outside at a table by herself. I’m always early and she’s here before me? Usually she’s late for everything and has today even bought herself a drink. Hmm, she’s keen. This makes me suspicious and I go more on the defensive. Dealing with her since I learned of her true nature feels like riding on the back of a Great White shark.
I kiss her hello on a cheek, just like I would any other date, except that this isn’t a date, I’m expecting it to be a negotiation. She’s wearing a light Summer dress and her big boobs are popping out at the top. Is that for my benefit? We exchange brief pleasantries and I go to get a drink from the bar inside. I laugh to myself at the surreal feeling that this situation has. I want absolutely nothing to do with her and yet here I find myself.
“I don’t know what to do about the house,” she says as I sit down with my drink.
“Well, you have to pay somewhere to live, so it may as well be somewhere that you have a big garden,” I retort. I immediately see through her ploy of trying to manipulate me and fend her off with what I know she likes best about the place that she won’t get anywhere else.
Round and round the conversation goes, all in a civil manner, with her throwing reason after reason to sell the house now. What’s left outstanding on the mortgage is what is the property’s current market value. The British property market needs to recover significantly for there to be any hope of me getting all my money back. We’re years away from that happening, possibly never. Selling the house achieves nothing.
It’s clear to me that she’s trying to elicit some kind of reaction out of me, what exactly I don’t know, but she’s not getting it. We keep coming back to what I said initially that she will always have to pay to live somewhere. She realizes that a stalemate has set in and that I’m not going to be led by the nose. We fall silent.
“I miss you,” she says softly.
“That’s nice,” I say and take a sip of my pint. I really couldn’t care less about her.
“I’ve been on a few dates,” she says, trying to bait me some more. I’m not biting.
“I keep comparing them to you,” she says.
“Have you slept with any of them?” I ask, curious and brazen at the same time, expecting her to say yes. I really don’t care what she thinks or how she responds. She can storm off in a huff, I’ll laugh and stay to finish my drink.
“No, I didn’t,” she says in a way that I know is the truth, because I know how she speaks when she lies.
Her words are a rare honesty, a naked vulnerability that was largely absent during our five-year relationship. I’m glad to hear that she’s back on the dating scene, not because I’m happy that she feels ready to move on, no because it means that she’s keeping my competition busy. I have very little positive feelings for her; she already took them all.
She starts telling me about her dates, what was wrong with them, why they were unsuitable and I just listen in silence. It occurs to me that I’m in passive disinterested mode; I’m sitting back in my seat, my feet pointing away from her and I’m not saying much. She’s leaning forward, her tits almost falling out of her dress and she’s very keen to have my attention.
For the past year I’ve sublimated any feelings I’ve had about her. I think my experience with her was a poison pill that I’ve swallowed but not expelled or diluted in my system. If any of my dates said or did anything that reminded me of her, I’d lose interest in them. With her every negative word my body becomes more tense. Dormant feelings of rage start to stir inside me and they grow like an acid eating away at my insides. I keep a straight face as she talks but all the while I’m growing angrier at her. I still have unfinished business with her, I realize.
While she sits there finding fault with what are probably perfectly good, respectable men, an idea comes to me…an idea of revenge.
She’s an ideal candidate for a fuckbuddy. I always enjoyed having sex with her and now, courtesy of her sex diaries, I know exactly what she’s capable of. I know exactly how she used sex to manipulate men, myself included. She was holding out on me, putting on a good-girl act for me, meanwhile she’s the biggest slut in town. I have zero respect for her. That’s great because there is no risk of me falling in love, the timeless trap of the fuckbuddy concept. She obviously wants something from me, probably wants us to try again, so she’ll be very keen to please me. I’m in a position to exploit her, to get what other men have got out of her and for it to cost me very little. Everything it could have cost me financially and emotionally I have already paid.
Her phone rings and without asking me, she answers it. Yes, her manners are that bad. I think that there was always a gap between us when it comes to etiquette, but hey, sex is the great leveller of all social pretence. I hear her conversation with a friend, but my mind is mulling over my despicable idea: I like it.
“I have a friend in the neighbourhood coming to join us for a few minutes,” she says.
“Do I know this friend?” I ask.
“No, she’s new. She’s very useful to know because she has loads of contacts and she even got me some part-time work twice last year,” she says.
My Exgf will never change, she’ll always attach ‘usefulness’ to anybody she meets. I must have been so ‘useful’ to her. Maybe it’s time she makes herself useful to me, to my libido in particular. She uses people all the time, I think I’ll show her what it feels like.
The friend arrives and joins us after she gets herself a drink. I decide to do something naughty; I decide to flirt with the friend. This woman couldn’t be more unattractive to me: mousey-brown hair, weathered skin, flat chest, anorexic body, poor grooming and bad fashion sense.
Nevertheless I turn on active interest, I turn to face her, my feet point towards her and I initiate open-ended conversation. I’m affable, I’m interested and interesting. All my attention is directed at the innocent little friend. Yes, I was being a shit, but I don’t care.
My Exgf has never seen me like this before. I think her ego took a pounding as she watched me chat up another women right in front of her. I have no doubt in my mind that she wants me more than ever now; I can see it in her wide eyes. I know how to work her and work her I shall. The friend is enjoying my attention and starts playing with her hair. My Exgf just sits in stunned silence. I’m in complete control of the situation.
After about half an hour of flirting, the friend realizes what I’m doing but my Exgf is still oblivious. The friend makes her excuses and leaves. I turn to my Exgf and smile, knowing that she has never seen me like that because only since I left her have I been on so many dates that I now have these dating skills. She seems in a mild state of shock; I think I see her hand shake as she lifts her glass.
I don’t know what she was expecting from this afternoon, but it’s definitely not going how she planned. The less I cared, the more power I had. Maybe there is something to that nasty adage of “Treat ’em mean, keep ’em keen.”
“Right, I need to go now,” she says.
“Okay,” is all I say as I stand to kiss her goodbye on a cheek.
“There’s some other things I want to talk about, so how about we meet up another time?” she says.
I say nothing and merely smile. Here, fishy fishy…
I watch her drive off, but stay to finish my drink and savour a warm feeling that has come over me and it’s not just from the sun on my back. I sit thinking about my fuckit list.
Apparently revenge is a dish best served cold. If that’s true, then I sense an unseasonal Siberian cold front heading our way…
Justin Timberlake – What goes around comes around