Tag Archives: lies

Date #53 – Tall Gal

It’s been more than two months since I’ve had sex and I’m as horny as hell. I know I pledged to only sleep with The One when I finally find her, but my resolve is being sorely tested by the ready supply of eager pussy to be found on the internet. I accidentally stumble across a way to game Plenty of Fish to get more traffic and approach emails from women. Consequently I get an email late on a Thursday night from a pretty brunette. I look at her profile and see that she’s 31 years-old and six feet tall. Those are two items on my Fuckit List, i.e. scandalously younger and how tall must a woman be to become impractical to fuck. I say thank you to Life for this opportunity and answer her email.

Witty, flirty emails ping-pong between us for an hour and it turns out that she has a thing for tall guys with my accent. She later makes a comment about “if you can keep me intrigued for that long” which tells me that she’s looking for fun and not a long relationship. I notice on her profile that her longest relationship has only lasted a year. She’s perfect one-night stand material and just in time too because I’m starting to forget what the warm wetness of a woman’s pussy wrapped around my cock feels like.

I end the interaction by challenging her to buy me a coffee in exchange for all the questions that she wants answers to. She claims to have plans for the Friday night and is going off to Spain for work on the weekend. We swap phone numbers and I leave it there, doubting I’ll ever hear from her again.

This interaction with her combines to make me think of the stunning brunette I encountered at the dating site’s drinks evening. Maybe my addiction to blondes has been the reason that I’m still single despite my best efforts. Maybe blondes and me just aren’t a good fit? Perhaps I should broaden my horizons a bit and see if the grass is better on the brunette side of the fence? At the same time I’m wondering if my belief that dates off free sites tend to be disappointing has any validity to it.

The next night, Friday, at seven o’clock she sends me a message on WhatsApp and I ask about her plans for the night and before I know it we agree to meet in a pub in my town in less than an hour’s time. I run around like a mad thing getting my place tidy in case we end up back here. As I’m getting dressed a good female friend contacts me via WhatsApp wanting relationship advice from me. In my current state I’m the last person to be giving anybody any kind of advice but I do my best. It’s amazing how there are bouts of silence, icy nothingness and then all these women come at once. I say this because there is another lady who made contact with me on Friday that I like the look and sound of, as well somebody else who I matched with late on Thursday night. Maybe there is something to astrology after all? Is my moon in Uranus?

Could tonight’s date be The One?

She gets to the pub before me and we find each other. Wow, she’s tall, the tallest girl I’ve ever met on a date. She’s wearing heels and is almost as tall as me. Fucking her might feel like copulating with a giraffe; long legs and limbs everywhere.

Naturally I think of her as Tall Gal.

She’s a pretty girl with blue-green eyes, round cheeks and a pleasant smile. We make a little small talk as we queue at the bar and after a couple of minutes pointless banter she says to me, “No, you still have your accent,” which pleases me because I know it’s something she finds attractive about me. Game on!

The pub is busy and noisy because of a major rugby match being shown on the giant television screens and we find the last available seats against a pillar. Not ideal as this is too noisy for a decent conversation and calm enough for me to evoke emotions of lust in her. I’ve got my work cut out for me.

“Do you like spicy food?” I ask, curious about her sexual side.

“I love spicy food! The spicier the better,” she replies.

She likes the sound of her own voice and I just encourage her to keep talking. She’s probably nervous and it will put her at ease. I’m conscious of how little I feel; I’m like a cold-blooded Great White shark patrolling my turf out at sea. I smile politely and ask open-ended questions that sets her off. Over the course of the evening she hardly asks any questions of me.

“I worked on a resort that was popular with Russian tourists,” she says, recounting her work experience abroad.

“What did you think of them?” I ask.

“When they’re young, they’re stunning, but they’re all only after a man with money,” she rejoins.

It’s nice to hear someone else parrot the conclusion I have come to about Russian women.

“Don’t you think it’s understandable though that marrying up is their best chance of bettering themselves?” I ask, playing devil’s advocate in a test of her moral outlook.

“Yes, I do and I think that if I were in their shoes I would probably do the same thing,” she replies.

Her answer leaves me cold. She really couldn’t have said anything else to have put me off her. I still steadfastly believe that people should only marry for love, because that is what will make it work. Any other reason for marriage won’t last very long and if it does it won’t be a happy one. Why do people struggle to understand this?

On the plus side her answer just reinforces my initial idea that she either isn’t interested in a long-term relationship or just isn’t relationship material. This girl is just trouble, just dangerous for a man looking for love. I feel somewhat more justified in just wanting a one-night shag off her.

I change the subject slightly and she starts telling me about her longest relationship.

“He wasn’t from this country, he was much older than me and he had loads of money. We had a lot of good times together,” she says.

“Was the age gap a problem in any way at times?” I ask, wondering exactly what her pull towards older men is about.

“Yes, when we were out and about I was conscious of people staring at us. People probably thought that I was one of those Russian trophy girlfriends,” she says with a childish giggle.

“What was the attraction?” I ask, tying to get closer to the truth.

“We had a chemistry that I’ve never felt with anyone else before or since,” she answers, then continues,”I wonder if that amazing chemistry is what has kept me from meeting someone else? I can’t help but compare every guy I meet to my older guy,” she says with a frown.

My thoughts wonder over to the part of my brain reserved for Baltic Babe and the answer is ‘yes’. I’ve been guilty of that too and I realize that this Tall Gal is in no way causing me to feel another kind of attraction to her. It’s not because I find her unattractive – she is pretty – but I’m realizing that there’s also too much of an age-gap between us to give hope for a relationship. She speaks in a way about things that are new to her, but that I have already grown tired of.

“So what happened with your older guy?” I ask in an effort to complete the picture.

“He went back to his country,” she says with a sad face and looks away from me. Is she still hung up on him?

“Is that when you came back to the UK?”

“No, I stayed on but came back a year after that,” she replies with still a downcast look on her face and evading eye contact with me. I see what is obvious to me and press on it.

“Did you come back here because of another guy?” I ask as softly as I know how.

“Yes,” she says, still evading eye contact.

I change the topic by asking her about her favourite television shows and she starts rattling off a slew of depressing psychological dramas, murder mysteries and supernatural-themed shows. She starts telling me how she likes the gritty realism of the gory shows and the real-life application of horror moments. All that she speaks off is filled with negativity and the dark side of life. I could see that she could be a real drag to be around sometimes. Where have I felt this before?

Suddenly it hits me that Tall Gal is another Lusty Lass and Krazy Girl. A soft-hearted, sweet, well-intentioned young woman who is unlucky in love because she just doesn’t take a timeout for herself to get her emotions in order before embarking on a new relationship. She’s constantly on the rebound, carrying ever-increasing emotional baggage around with her. I start to feel sorry for her. Do I really want to be another guy who just uses her? Do I want to go back to being that self-appointed vengeful shit who avails himself of vulnerable women’s orifices? No.

Tall Gal unravels her scarf to reveal a bit of cleavage. It’s actually cold in here, so why did she do that? The pub erupts in celebration as a try is scored which causes her to look around. I take the opportunity to check her body out. She’s not as slim as in her photos with several rolls of puppy fat bulging under her white blouse. For a big girl and one carrying a few extra pounds her breasts are surprisingly small and no more than a B-cup. Am I that desperate to have sex that she’ll do? No.

I decide to employ my Golden Silence trick, in which I keep quiet for as long as it takes for my date to initiate a topic of conversation. Whatever they go with is usually what is on their minds lately. Tall Gal turns to me and I just smile, biding my time as I take a sip from my drink. As they all have, she eventually cracks and speaks.

“How many dates have you been on?” she asks. An interesting choice of topic. Is she genuinely interested in me that’s why she’s asking or does it bother her.

“I’ve been on more than most, I’m starting to realize. Why how many have you been on?” I retort before she realizes what I’ve done.

“I’ve been on five before tonight and that’s over three months,” she says proudly. Amateur, I think to myself.

“What have they been like?” I ask before she can say anything else. I’ve learned that no woman wants to hear that I’ve had more than fifty dates, so I avoid giving a direct answer.

“Well the second one was an absolute nightmare because he got totally drunk, but the others were okay. I was so nervous for my first one,” she says, rolling her eyes.

“That’s normal. Is this your first time you’ve been online dating?” I ask, suspecting I know the answer.

“Yes, I’ve always thought it an odd thing to do, but everyone is doing it nowadays so I thought I’d give it a go,” she replies.

Wow, you must be the last woman in the country not to have tried internet dating. And you’ve started off with Plenty of Fish?! Talk about a baptism of fire.

I start telling her of my memorable dates such as the Angry Yank and the Wild Animal Tickler. I tell her about the typical lies that women tell on their profiles (age, old photos, height, smoking, job) and she seems a little surprised at my words. I take her reaction to indicate surprise or curiosity. I’m wrong.

“Well, there is one thing I’ve lied about on my profile,” she says with a mischievous look in her eye. Here we go, what now?

“I’ve said that I’m a non-smoker, but I do, only a few a day, usually at the end of the day after work. I suppose I’m a social smoker,” she says matter-of-factly.

That’s it! I want to go home now!

I wasn’t feeling any chemistry with her, wasn’t exactly enjoying myself, didn’t really fancy her, didn’t want to have sex with her and now she turns out to be a smoker. Gross. Why am I wasting my time here?

She seems emotionally needy to me and that will eventually spill over into clingyness that leads to men rejecting her. She is going to keep getting hurt, but it doesn’t have to be at the hands of me. I don’t need more notches on my bedpost or stains on my conscience.

I decide that the best thing to do is to end the evening gracefully, not do her any harm emotionally and just let it be as positive an experience for her without her becoming invested in me. I want her to have the strength to keep dating because she might get lucky…and she’ll tie up some of my competition by keeping them busy or perhaps taking one of them off the market. All I need is an excuse.

She stifles a yawn and I call her out on it, for which she apologizes. Then she asks me what the time is and my exit is complete.

“It’s half ten. Shall we call it a night? You’re starting to yawn,” I suggest.

“Yes, I think we’d better,” she says.

Perfect. She now thinks it’s her idea to bring this date to an end. She feels she’s in control, just what I wanted, a nice way to end the encounter. I do my usual gentlemanly thing of helping her put her coat on and I escort her to her car. There’s an awkward silence between us and I get the impression that she’d rather I didn’t accompany her. I don’t think she wants to see me again.

We stand next to her car and I kiss her on a cheek and say, “It was nice to meet you,” and nothing more. I look at her and devilishly watch her squirm for words.

“Yes, it was nice to meet you too. I’ll be seeing you…you…” and she got caught up in her thoughts, thrashing about for something polite to say, definitely avoiding anything that sounded like commitment. I just keep quiet and smile.

“Some other time,” she says, her sentence trailing off on the vapours of her breath that drifted away into the cold February night air.

I say nothing, turn around and walk off.

That felt like a total waste of time, but if I didn’t go I’d always wonder.

Anyway, I have two more dates lined up.

Akon Ft Kardinal Official – Dangerous

Forgotten cocks

It’s now early December and it’s funny how, with enough time, things make more sense. I take myself on a training course in London for four days and it includes a Saturday and a Sunday. The Cockaholic is unimpressed that I won’t be seeing her for that weekend, but it can’t be helped. My financial situation is becoming a problem and I need to keep my skills fresh to be marketable. I also decide to meet The Saffa for dinner on the Sunday night as she has asked to meet, wanting to give me a Christmas present. I decide not to tell The Cockaholic about this innocent rendezvous, her previous reaction to my meeting Busty Blonde taught me not to even mention the existence of a previous woman.

Each night after the surprisingly intensive course I get home and phone the Cockaholic for a chat. It’s my way of soothing her insecurities. On the Sunday I even call her at lunchtime during the break, but my phone battery is running low so I curtail the call, leaving just enough battery for a short call if needed.

After my course I meet with The Saffa to swap Christmas presents. We meet outside Tower Hill Tube station and The Saffa seems happy to see me. We go to The Dickens Inn to have pizza and a drink. It’s a surprisingly pleasant interaction. She tells me that she’s started seeing a guy and she tells me his name. I instantly realize it’s one of the guys that I was suspicious of when we were seeing each other; his name was tagged in several photos on Facebook with her. I feel that I was right in my assessment of what was going on, what was causing all the unnecessary drama in her head and heart. She was probably seeing me on weekends and him on weekdays. This was causing conflicted emotions in her, tinged with guilt and leading to her abhorrent behaviour.

I like to think that my reading of women’s games has improved considerably. I fall silent, imbued with a sense of disappointment in her, but after a few drinks The Saffa is overly chatty and she doesn’t notice.

“We haven’t slept together yet,” she says in a typical moment of brutal tactlessness.

“And?…” I coax.

“Well, the thing is, I have managed to glimpse his cock and it’s small,” she says.

I just laugh and then we fall silent.

“I miss your cock,” she says.

A stranger sitting at the table nearest us turns his head slightly, raising an eyebrow.

“It’s been little more than a month,” I say with a chuckle.

“Ja, but I miss it. It’s the best cock” she says.

The stranger’s ears are on fire and he has to take a sip from his drink. I just smile, wondering why she’s telling me this. What’s she up to now? My silence spurs her on.

“You know that I was crazy about you, don’t you?” she blurts out.

“We weren’t meant for each other, “ I shoot back, intent on killing any hopes for a reconciliation that she might have.

“Ag, it doesn’t matter, man. We’re already talking about moving in together after Christmas,” she says.

A matter of weeks ago she was crazy about me, is missing my cock while being on the verge of moving in with another guy? What would he think and feel if he knew that barely a month ago she was asking me to fuck her in the arse, asking me to pump cum into her arse? That in a restaurant she said to me that she misses my cock? That she was concerned that he has a small cock?

What I’m learning of women is that I’ve been him, this new guy who is equally unwitting, equally naïve and innocent, just another soon-to-be forgotten cock that was in her holes when it suited her. I think I’ve been that guy with a few women now, the last to know and just another forgotten cock.

The evening flies by with her talking at me and over me. How I don’t miss that…or her. I give her a small present, she reciprocates and we wish each other a merry Xmas, then we head off to our divergent lives…and lies.

I’m standing on a train platform waiting for my train home and I decide to use up the rest of my phone’s battery on a call to The Cockaholic. After the evening’s revelations I feel the need to hear her voice, perhaps in the hope that there’s reassuring signs that she’s somehow The One for me. She answers swiftly, seems pleased and surprised to hear from me, we chat briefly before my phone dies.

First thing on the Monday morning after recharging my phone overnight I send The Cockaholic a text message apologizing for the rude interruption to our chat, but I get no response. In the evening I call her, intent on having a friendly chat, but she’s anxious about something, I can tell. Eventually it comes out after a few frosty minutes.

“Why were you able to call me on Sunday night when at lunchtime you said your battery was dying?” she says.

“I kept some battery for emergency purposes. Waiting for my train home I thought I’d give you a call because I wanted to hear your voice,” I reply.

“Hmph,” is all she says.

The road to hell is indeed paved with good intentions…and half-truths.

The next week with The Cockaholic is difficult. She seems quite hyper on the phone mixed with a bit of passive-aggressive behaviour and at times I just didn’t want to talk to her. I think she’s showing her true colours now, that of being a stressed-out adrenaline junkie who likes to have a night out once a week and get drunk. Every week since I’ve known her it seems she has after-work drinks one night of the week. Today I’m wondering who those drinks are with.

I arrive at her place on Saturday afternoon and from the get-go the atmosphere between us is strained. I notice that The Cockaholic is reluctant to make eye-contact with me. Something’s going on, but instead of confronting her, I choose to follow a smoother route and just let things play out.

A classic example of the sort of thing that was happening is the following. A few weeks earlier she had bought a coffee machine for me; she doesn’t drink coffee. I was touched by her generosity. The machine uses capsules and I have the same machine at my home. Today my favourite coffee capsule ran out at her place, to which she says to me, “From now on you can bring your own bloody coffee.” I was astounded. The tone and choice of words was uncalled for and not in keeping with what was said or had happened beforehand. What the hell is going on in her head?!

After a testy evening with a frozen atmosphere between us, we wind up in bed and the sex doesn’t take long to kick off. I initiate it to test her emotive state and, to my surprise, The Cockaholic goes along, as if nothing has happened between us. It starts to feel like angry sex and maybe that’s a turn-on for her. At one point I’m fucking her doggy-style, her favourite position (and mine too) when she suddenly shouts out, “Fuck me, you bastard!”

I laugh to myself, but can’t help but wonder where that comes from. I make her cum and it seems to pacify her. I choose not to cum; I’m slipping into self-preservation mode. We fell asleep with me holding her in my arms. As The Cockaholic falls asleep with little twitches of her body and inaudible murmurs, I lie there wondering what the hell is going on…or who is going on…and am I the last to know?

Del Amitri – Always the last to know

Head games

On Saturday I go around to The Cockaholic’s place at 4pm and she’s happy to see me. We spend the evening chatting, watching a movie, sharing a pizza and ciders. We go to her bedroom and she immediately sinks to her knees, undresses me and starts happily sucking away on my cock, making sounds of approval. The Cockaholic totally enjoys sucking my cock. I ask her about this and she answers, “well, it’s so smooth and it fills my mouth perfectly.”

A few days later we’re chatting on the phone and she tells me that her contraceptive injection is wearing off and that she had started spotting and felt bloated. We didn’t speak more of this other than her saying “if you now don’t want to come around on the weekend, I’ll understand”. It is, of course, a test of my intent with her, but I genuinely want to see her. We don’t have to have sex, I enjoy being with her.

“I’m not spending my time with you just for the great sex,” I tell her and I hear her smile on the other side of the line.

I’m pretty pleased with myself for having so deftly deflected this so-called ‘shit-test’ but then she hits me with something new.

“Umm, if you don’t mind, can you only come around after lunchtimes on Saturdays?” she asks.

This instantly strikes me as odd. What’s going on here? My Trust Demon snaps out of his sleep and jumps to his feet, fists clenched and eyes glowing.

“Sure, no problem. Is there a particular reason?” I counter as calmly as I can.

“Umm, yes, this is a bit awkward…but my best friend stays over on Friday nights,” she says.

Best friend, huh? My silence speaks for me.

“Okay, the whole story is that she’s married and having an affair with a guy she works with who is also married. The only time they can get together is Friday nights and the safest place for them is my place,” she says with a pained tone in her voice.

This is too ludicrous not to be true, I decide. A part of me is impressed that she’s as good a friend as to allow her place to be used as an illicit love-nest, but at the same time I’m unimpressed that she has a best friend like that. Again I say nothing.

As instructed I arrive after lunchtime on Saturday. The Cockaholic seems pleased to see me. As we walk to her lounge I take a quick look into her spare bedroom, the one the illicit lovers are supposed to be using. It only has a single bed in it. So are they using the same bed that we sleep in? Or is her story total lies? I don’t know what to think.

We spend the afternoon and evening watching funny videos on YouTube. The following one stood out because it told me of something I didn’t know about myself, but I’ll tell you more about that another time.

Hitler, dating & Cluster B personality disorder

As is becoming our routine we end up in her bedroom with her lustfully going down on me. We agree not to indulge in full intercourse because her contraceptive is wearing off. I’m also keen to not impregnate a woman I’m not sure about. She sucks on my cock for well over an hour before I cum in her mouth, something she clearly enjoys given the sounds she makes. The Cockaholic takes her time after I’ve cum to keep lovingly, tenderly sucking on me. I’ve never experienced anything like this.

I let my fingers do the walking in her lady-garden and she has a shuddering orgasm. We lie in the afterglow, chatting amiably when she tells me that she has a sister whom she hasn’t spoken to in over ten years. The details indicate petty sibling rivalry and it shows me that she has a steely side to her personality in which she can be quite nasty. I’m not sure what to make of this revelation, so I just keep quiet.

4th November – Tuesday
I call The Cockaholic at 9.30pm but I get her voicemail. She calls me back at 11pm, but I struggle to make out what she is saying; she’d been drinking again. One night last week she went out for drinks with colleagues after work and called me from the train, but she was tipsy. I don’t like talking to drunk people. It brings back awful feelings from when I was a little boy and my father was drunk and, although he made no sense, he forced me to sit and listen to his gibberish. I hated that as a kid and I refuse to put up with that as an adult. This seems to be a weekly thing in her working life. Nevertheless I’ve just lost a bit of respect for her.

I text her, offering to collect her at her station if she had too much to drink, but if she didn’t want that then she should please text me when she got home safely. I get no response, but the next morning at 8.30 she sent me a text message saying that her battery had died and she went straight to sleep once home. Plausible, but it doesn’t sit well with me. It reminds me of Krazy Girl and her lies about her phone and her movements. My Trust Demon has been stirred.

5th November – Wednesday
I go into London with The Cockaholic and at a train station we walk past my ex-wife whom I’ve not laid eyes on since September 2006. It was a surreal moment; she blanked me while I had a good look. She’s put on weight, wearing contact lenses, had heavy make-up on, was walking with a stoop and, to my mind, made for a very sad figure. I wonder what she thought when she saw me and especially with another woman, a vivacious one at that. It couldn’t have been pleasant for her, especially the surprise factor. I know that she is now remarried and trying to have a child. It’s a strange feeling seeing her suddenly like that.

The Cockaholic and I have dinner at a Thai restaurant that I have chosen, which we both enjoy. Then we walk around Soho gawking at gaudy sex shops and step into one that had an eclectic mix of posters and memorabilia. After a few giggles in there we join the queue to get into the venue for the night which is hosting a burlesque show. I’d got the tickets a week ago, thinking this might be a test of her moral fabric. She seemed very comfortable with it all and was excellent company all night. All things considered, I think that she’s a lovely person.

Could I fall in love with The Cockaholic? I think that if I let myself go that I could. She’s not the best-looking girl that I’ve dated, but we have good fun together. Looks fade after all, it’s what is left that matters in the long run.

Back at my place she spends the night and almost dutifully sucks me off in the morning. In turn I played with her clit until she came. Sometime this week she’s getting another contraceptive injection, then normal play-time can resume.

I think that we both like giving our partner pleasure. When it was time for her to go, I didn’t want her to leave. I wanted her to stay so that we could just enjoy travelling through time together.

I’m going to an industry trade-show in London on Saturday, so I make arrangements to meet Busty Blonde. Earlier in the year I had promised to go with her to an exhibition at the Imperial War Museum commemorating the outbreak of World War One. I also wanted to check that she was alright, that our break-up hasn’t destroyed her. I guess I wanted a sense of closure and to appease a burdensome sense of guilt. I naively tell The Cockaholic about this and she listens in silence.

After my work-like appointment I go off to meet the woman whom I should consider an ex-girlfriend, but for some reason I don’t think of her like that. I feel it’s because I never fell in love with her. Busty Blonde is her normal, cheery self which makes me feel better about myself and after a couple of hours we head our separate ways. At dusk I head home to collect my car and go around to The Cockaholic’s where she initially seems relieved to see me. I guess she was feeling a little insecure and jealous; women can be very territorial and suspicious of other women. I say nothing about her feelings and am my normal self.

It’s now another week on and my instincts tell me that The Cockaholic isn’t being totally honest with me about something. This weekend she has gone away to Brussels on a Hen Party which I am fine with, but it’s her change in behaviour on the phone at night since the previous weekend that has rankled me. On the Saturday that I saw Busty Blonde, I eventually later got the impression that The Cockaholic wasn’t happy about this; her demeanour was cold. She is definitely the jealous, insecure type. I’m also starting to see that she has control freak tendencies in her.

The following Saturday I arrive at her place at lunchtime, The Cockaholic seems a little off towards me. She tells me that her two naughty friends (who are having an affair) and her went to a local pub the previous night. She makes a point of mentioning an incident with another guy in the pub, by way of accidentally insulting him. The whole story doesn’t make sense and it strikes me as odd. I get the feeling that she didn’t tell me everything.

She’s unavailable on Friday nights and Saturday mornings, she goes out drinking at least once a week, her phone has battery issues and her best friend has dubious morals. This all doesn’t feel right and that feeling is growing.

My Trust Demon is running around in his cage, he’s in a rage and I don’t know what to do about it at this stage.

Foreigner – Head Games

Who can it be now?! – Part 2

I can’t believe this is happening! The Cockaholic is about to arrive and The Saffa is standing in front of me with pussycat eyes. I’m speechless because of this predicament while The Saffa takes my silence for something else. My heart is pounding in my mouth, I can’t talk.

“I’ve come to make you breakfast,” she says.

What?! I don’t why you’re here, but I’ve got to get rid of you. Breaking up with you now will take too long. Shit, what do I do?!

“How about you take me out for breakfast?” I quickly come up with.

“Okay. Where do you want to go?” she counters.

“How about down into the high street. I know a great place for breakfast,” I say, reaching for my phone, keys and wallet. Got to get out of here quickly.

“Ja, cool with me,” she says.

Shit, what about The Cockaholic when she gets here and I’m not here?!

“I haven’t been to the toilet yet, I’ve just got up. Wait in the lounge and I’ll be with you in a few minutes,” I improvise.

I go hide in the bathroom and start texting The Cockaholic that a friend had a crisis and that I was now having to spend the day with him. Will my message get to her in time? Will she believe this bullshit? Will she question my texting rather than phoning? That’s all out of my hands now. I’ve got to get The Saffa out of here pronto before The Cockaholic arrives!

I’m scared that these women would meet. If either or both of them physically attacked me then I’d deserve that. It wouldn’t be the end of the world though as just a few clicks on the internet would have me back in the game. I’ll try and avoid that unpleasantness nevertheless.

I collect The Saffa and walk fast to the side-walk cafe a couple of blocks away. Has The Cockaholic seen us?

“Geez, man, what’s the hurry?” The Saffa complains.

“I’m really hungry. C’mon, let’s get there,” I reply, stretching my stride as The Saffa skips along sporadically trying to keep up.

Mercifully the only free table at the cafe is inside, so I bundle The Saffa in there. Was I quick enough? I look over my shoulders, half-expecting a slap but none is forthcoming. Not yet, at least.

“Doll, I’m really sorry about last night. It was very rude of me to end the call like that,” The Saffa begins.

Right now I don’t give a shit about that; my eyes are darting around the place and I’m trying to see who’s outside at the tables. Again The Saffa misinterprets my silence for stony disapproval, all the while my heart is racing, my mouth is dry and I’m trying my damnedest to look unperturbed.

“Ja, I can see you’re upset with me. I would be too. Ag man, I’m really sorry. I know you’ve just been trying to help,” she continues.

Did I just see The Cockaholic’s sports car drive past? There aren’t too many of those around here.

“Listen, can we try and patch things up?” she asks.

Silence on my part. I might just get away with this. My heart is sliding down from my mouth to where it normally resides.

“Please?” The Saffa says, leaning towards me across the table, almost pleading.

I’m getting hungry.

“How about we order some food?” I suggest, aware that I’m ignoring her words.

My heart-rate slows down to a mere gallop as we order and then eat our breakfast. I can’t taste the food while The Saffa talks the hind-leg of a race-horse that is missing its heart. All the while I’m pondering what to do next. I can’t assume it’s safe to go back home because The Cockaholic might be waiting there. An idea finally arrives.

“Hey, how about we go for a drive in the countryside?” I suggest which The Saffa gleefully accepts.

She’s probably thinking that my actions mean that she’s in the clear. So far I have hardly said a word to her about anything, least of all about ‘patching things up’. The few times I felt inclined to say anything she simply spoke over me, as usual.

We scurry back to my apartment complex and I lead the Saffa straight to my car for fear of The Cockaholic waiting at my front door.

“Doll, can I go to the loo first?” The Saffa asks just as she gets comfortable in the passenger seat.

I ignore her and slam her car door shut before she says or does anything else. I don’t make eye contact as I get in the driver’s seat. I start the car in record time and we speed off into the countryside using all the back streets, heading in the opposite direction of The Cockaholic’s town.

Only once we are several miles in the middle of nowhere do I remember an isolated pub. We should be safe there. Just to make sure I park away from where any passing car on the road might spot us.

“About bladdy time. I’m about to burst!” The Saffa complains as she makes for the ladies’ at the pub.

We spend a couple of hours sitting in the beer garden at the back of the pub, drinking cider and nibbling on tapas. For good measure The Saffa spoke at me for the duration, as she is prone to do. Some women have nothing to say and they keep on saying it. At least she paid for the drinks and nibbles.

Deciding it’s safe to head back home I coax her back into my car. While she spoke at me and over me I’ve decided that once we get back to my place I’m going to break up with her. The drive back is more leisurely now that it’s after lunchtime.

“I want to suck your cock,” The Saffa blurts out.

“What?! I’m driving,” I answer in shock.

“Ag, c’mon man, it’s a fantasy of mine, to suck a guy off while he’s driving,” she continues.

I think about it for a second, it’s tempting but I decide it’s just too risky.

“Is somebody horny?” I ask.

“Ja. You know how much I love your cock,” she answers with a mischievous smile, then licking her lips.

An idea comes to me, it’s one of my naughty ideas. I press my foot a little harder onto the accelerator.

“Tell me another of your fantasies,” I say.

“Well, I’ve always wanted to have sex while wearing a mask,” she replies.

“Tell me another fantasy,” I say.

“You’re going to laugh, but I’ve always liked the idea of giving Darth Vader a blowjob,” she says, surprising me.

“I think we can arrange some of that back at my place. Until then you just imagine all the things you want to do with my cock,” I reply, remembering that I just happen to have an eye-mask like Zorro’s that has never been used.

My words have a profound effect on The Saffa: she shuts up. Finally, some peace and quiet. Knowing to tune a woman’s brain into the prospect of sex is an useful thing. How am I going to pull off the Darth Vader thing? I only have a naval aviator’s costume, the type Richard Gere wore in ‘An Officer and a Gentleman’. Ah, I know what to do.

We don’t talk much until we’re back at my place. I find a porn movie on the internet that involves Darth Vader and I cast it to my television. When we get to the inevitable scene of The Dark Lord getting a blowjob from a reluctant Princess Leia lookalike, The Saffa is enthralled watching this, her mouth hangs open.

She’s ready.

I go fetch the mask from the shelf in my cupboard reserved for adult toys and return to the lounge. I don’t think The Saffa noticed my absence. Coy Princess Leia is still greedily sucking Darth’s dong.

“Here, put this on and stand there,” I instruct, handing her the black mask. Her perfect blue eyes should look good through the slits.

The Saffa stands up, puts the mask on and steps towards where I pointed.

I sit facing her in a chair next to a table, grab my nearby camera, switch it onto video, position it on the edge of the table and press ‘record’. The Saffa looks at it, bites her bottom lip and then looks at me, but says nothing.

Something I’ve figured out about her and many women I’ve encountered is that they want a man to take charge. The Saffa’s enjoyment of being strangled while being fucked speaks of her secretly wanting to be utterly dominated by a man. The sense of powerlessness, helplessness does something for her; the fear is a turn-on.

To be continued…

Who can it be now?!

This afternoon’s date with The Lying Lithuanian was a pathetic waste of my time, but it did show me how far I have come in my dating life that I so quickly and easily walked away from her. Sadly it feels like it’s over between me and The Saffa; I need to say goodbye to her. The unexpected fun factor that The Cockaholic provided last night has my head in a bit of a spin, but I know it’s just the oxytocin.

It’s getting late and I’m waiting for Saturday’s Match of the Day to come on when my phone rings. It’s the Saffa. Let’s see what she wants. I’ll play it cool and wait to see if she apologizes for her bad behaviour of late.

Initially she’s all light and positivity then in a schizophrenic moment suddenly launches into a series of aggressive questions about where I was last night and who I was with. Seeing as she has been less than honest with me about who she has been with on her nights off that she doesn’t know that I’m aware of, I tell her lies too.

That’s the thing about lies, one begets another, but not just in the classic sense of having to follow one lie up with another. If we lie we get lies in return. I hate lying, it pains me physically, but tonight it doesn’t feel so bad.

The Saffa is unimpressed by my words and switches over to her favourite topic of her ‘unreasonable’ employers. I say something reasonable, she counters irrationally, I respond with more reason and she puts the phone down on me…again.

Fuck that and fuck off. I don’t need this. I’m already in the process of replacing her so I’m not as offended by her behaviour as I was a few nights ago. I guess that’s the beauty of feeling that you have options: you don’t take things to heart as easily. That is if you have a heart to start with.

The next morning I wake up at 10am and my mind instantly starts recalling my date with The Lying Lithuanian and the unpleasant call with The Saffa. I need some feel-good vibes in my life after those two.

My little brain latches onto the sordid memories of The Cockaholic. Yes, I want to see her again. It was a great night and despite her being off Tinder, there might just be something there. Still lying in bed I phone her and we have a fun chat. On the spur of the moment I invite her over to mine on the pretext of doing a barbecue for her. The way to a woman’s pussy is through her eyes; women love seeing a man doing things for them. I reckon that a man doing manly things is perhaps a secret aphrodisiac.

The Cockaholic jumps at my offer.

“I’ll be there in fifteen minutes!” she exclaims.

With a laugh I say, “See you soon then,” and we hang up.

I lie in bed for a few minutes more, thinking about how I want today with The Cockaholic to turn out. I think it’s almost certain that it’ll involve sex at some point, but I don’t want it just to be about that. I want to know more about her and see if there is relationship potential with her. I think it best that we behave ourselves for as long as possible; it also helps to build the sexual tension.

She only lives a few miles away so I better get up and get dressed and ready my home for my guest. I didn’t have any plans for today so this is exciting.

I’ve just finished getting dressed and spraying myself with Terre d’Hermes – the scent that Baltic Babe introduced me to and said made her horny – when my front door bell sounds.

That’s less than ten minutes. Wow, The Cockaholic’s keen. My heart skips a beat and my blood flows a little quicker. A memory of her repeatedly swallowing my cock flashes before my eyes.

I open my door expecting to see a smiling Cockaholic.

It isn’t her…

It’s The Saffa!

TO BE CONTINUED…

Date #50 – The Lying Lithuanian

After The Saffa had pissed me off I went onto Tinder. One of the two faces who matched with me looked familiar. I was convinced that I had swapped messages with her on ‘Plenty of Fish’ (PoF) earlier in the year but I became bored with her one or two-word answers. Good banter via email has lead to good dates; poor banter has meant poor dates. I wondered if she was dealing with a torrent of emails from other guys.

Tonight I went and found what I thought was her profile on PoF. Comparing the computer screen and the phone in my hand I can see that they were both definitely Lithuanian from signs in the photos on their profiles. The facial similarities are clear but perhaps not the same person. A major difference is that on Pof the age is forty-one and on Tinder it’s thirty-five; both of which could be lies. The major similarity is that their profiles’ wording is identical. It’s a long-winded quote from a popular book. Coincidence?

Irrespective of all that, she was very pretty and I would love to see her face sucking on the end of my cock. This was Tinder – after the experience with the Brazilian on Tinder my hopes are very low.

I wrote to her and she answered with very short sentences. Becoming irritated at her poor writing in one of my final messages I suggested we get together. I was expecting silence or an excuse, but was pleasantly surprised when she replied with suggesting that we meet two days hence on Saturday.

I suspect culture and language will be a barrier, but quite honestly, my objective is just to have sex with her; in most of her photos she’s stunning. I’ve learned enough about other Eastern European women to know to not even contemplate a romantic relationship. I must just keep telling her how much money I have and how important I am at work and she’ll eagerly open her legs for me.

I know that I’ve forsworn Eastern European women, but this is unfinished business. I’ll always wonder, “what about that one who reappeared?”.

Could she be The One?

I’m standing outside Tower Hill Tube station and am amazed at the fact that this is now my fiftieth first date but I still feel the occasional butterfly in my stomach. However, the cause of my nervousness is largely because I feel like I’m cheating on the Saffa and the girl I just spent the night with, The Cockaholic.

The Saffa is suspicious of my movements and is clever enough to conjure up a trap for me. What if the woman I’m about to meet is a stooge for the Saffa? What if she doesn’t exist and the Saffa taps me on the shoulder instead, followed by a swift slap through the face. The slap won’t bother me, it’s more about her telling everyone who knows me in the old country that I cheated on her. Why the hell would that bother me? I don’t know.

I realize that losing The Saffa wouldn’t bother me at all. That tells me something. I’m putting myself through stress for what exactly? A lot of stilted conversation and occasional good sex, that’s what. Is it worth it? No. The bullshit drama that she is capable of just isn’t worth it.

I feel that old familiar sensation of eyes looking at me. I turn and it’s my date and…she’s so fucking fat!

She has rolls of fat in her neck, a belly protrudes from under the black raincoat she’s trying to cover it with but the buttons can’t close. Is she pregnant? No, just obese.

I don’t mind a bit of jiggle, a bit of cushion for the pushin’, but if I’m expecting a slender nymphette and ponderous heffalump is what appears, then I’m not happy. My Trust Demon rolls around laughing on the floor of his cage, slapping a thigh and holding a hand to his stomach as a tear drips from a beady eye. I don’t have a poker face and can only guess that, at best, I look surprised. She’s definitely not thirty-five either, more like forty-five.

Just another disillusioned or desperate woman coming across to me as deceitful, I think to myself, fully aware of my hypocrisy. I decide to be civil in case she has the most amazing personality going. I’m also starving, fucking The Cockaholic has taken a lot out of me and it’s not just my sperm. I know that this date is going nowhere, but I’ll be a polite gentleman over lunch, eat my food while I ask her open-ended questions which might get her chatting.

“Do you like chicken?” I ask her after the customary polite kiss on the cheek. At least I think it’s her cheek, it could have been a roll of fat on her neck.

“Yes,” she says, looking at me quizzically.

“Then take a wing,” I say with my cheesiest of smiles.

She laughs and links up arms with me as we make our way down the stairs. Once on the concourse I relax my arm, expecting her to do likewise, but she holds on. Not since the Lusty Lass has a woman held onto my arm so tightly, not wanting to let go. What a shame I don’t fancy her, otherwise it would have been a great start.

My usual waiter at the Dickens Inn raises a disapproving eyebrow as he leads us to a table on the balcony overlooking the marina. I know, I know, not the hottest date I’ve brought in here. Is that a look of pity I spot on his face? Or is he concerned about the strength of the chair she’s just forced herself into? Am I going to have to extricate her out of it later? Or should I leave her trapped and then run?

In the spirit of making the best of this we order wine and pizzas. I direct the conversation and we get talking about how dating in London is difficult. I get more than I bargained for.

“I had a twenty-two year-old toy-boy once. I didn’t want him to know my real age, so I had a fake Facebook account. That’s what the account Tinder has picked up. It says I’m thirty-five, but I’m not. I actually forty-one,” she says.

“Wow! Really? You don’t look it,” I say, to which she smiles, not realizing I think that she looks forty-five or older. Then my brain kicks in and I remember the PoF profile that I thought was hers and suddenly she starts to remind me more of that profile. Details of that PoF profile come flooding back: Scorpio, accountant, forty-one, fat face.

“When I arrived in London nine years ago, my English wasn’t very good and he was from my country so it was easy to see him,” she elaborates.

Right, so those pictures I was drooling over are nine years old!

This was a serious case of deja moo – I’ve heard this bullshit before. What does she think she’s playing at? Is her modus operandi one of using her oldest, best photos to lure men onto dates then once they’re on the hook count on her personality to win the day? Why do women not realize that this is a flawed strategy because once trust is broken it ain’t coming back? Stupid girl.

Deja moo - the feeling you've heard this bullshit before.

Deja moo – the feeling you’ve heard this bullshit before.

This flagrant deceit towards another man instantly evokes my Trust Demon again; he snarls contempt. Before I get a chance to form any kind of opinion of her, any interest in her is finally crushed by her innocent admission of being a vain, manipulative, dishonest person.

I now think of her as ‘The Lying Lithuanian’. I think I’m being kind with this moniker.

Ah, I mustn’t lose sight of her being on Tinder. Maybe she’s just looking to get laid? Conventional wisdom says that fat girls don’t get sex as often as skinnier girls, or this that just a scurrilous rumour put out by Weight Watchers?

We talk and eat some more. Despite my hunger and her doing most of the talking she finishes her pizza before me. I think her errant glands have had some help in getting her to be almost as wide as she is tall.

“I’m studying to get a British qualification in accounting,” she says confidently, as if she’s trying to impress me.

I couldn’t care less, but seeing as she’s chatty I seize the opportunity to confirm a suspicion.

“What star sign are you?” I ask.

“Scorpio. Why?”

“I think some star signs make natural accountants,” I tell her. She seems to believe me.

Yep, you are who I think you are. She clearly doesn’t remember me.

Her English is adequate at best; most of my humour is wasted on her, unfortunately because laughter is what binds a couple together. In her defence I must say that even a native English-speaker would miss some of my humour. I couldn’t help but compare this aspect with The Cockaholic who not only caught all my humour, but loves it.

By the end of dessert I’m shocked to realize that she’s totally into me. I went passive-disinterested on her because it was a genuine response. It has had the usual effect of the woman playing with her golden-blonde hair, perpetually smiling at me, making sly glances at me, pointing her knees at me and paying absolute attention to anything that I care to say.

A part of me reckons I could tell her anything and she would nod her head in agreement. Did I want to see her head nodding and bobbing off my cock? No.

Earlier I had looked at my watch as I got off my Tube train and it was 2.30pm. It’s now 5pm. These two and a half hours felt like an eternity with her.

I also get the feeling that she’s a bit of a Misery, a downer to be around. I’ve met her type in the past: finding solace with takeaway meals, wine, chocolate, ‘Sex and the City’ and probably a collection of vibrators. What is it with some women who have such negative centres of energy?

I could invite her to my place, pour her some chilled wine, show her Californication, make my move and fuck her silly on my sofa while videoing it all. Been there, done that. Getting tedious now. Fuck off, stupid girl. I’ve had enough and want to get out of here.

I make my excuses about needing to get home. It’s true, I’d rather be washing my belly-button fluff than spend another minute with her.

“Would you like to join me for a walk around a park?” she asks as we head for the Tube station.

“No, thanks,” is the brutal best I can muster.

This was the shortest date because I simply wasn’t enjoying it. Yes, she was intelligent and friendly, I’m pretty sure that she fancied me, but the reality is that I didn’t fancy her, but more the younger, slimmer version of her. The thought of having sex with her made me uncomfortable. Having The Cockaholic and The Saffa on my cock is good enough for now.

The next day I sent her a text message complimenting her to start with then saying that I didn’t think that we were right for each other, then wishing her all the best for the future. A couple of hours later, while I was “entertaining” someone else, I get a lengthy reply from her that barely made sense it was so badly written. In essence she was saying that I was being too hasty after such a short date, which told me that she saw potential with me. My silence might help her understand that I’m just not interested in her.

I’m interested in The Cockaholic and have to say goodbye to The Saffa.

The inexperienced, White Knight me would have wasted time on this stupid girl. This Grey Knight swings his sword, slashes through the bullshit of another deranged woman, fending off her blubber with his shield, is entertaining some lusty wenches while keeping his gaze firmly on the prize that is love.

They say men can’t multi-task.

LESSONS LEARNED: 1) Maybe it’s time I realize that I really should stay away from Eastern European women. 2) Tinder can be gamed by having a fake Facebook account.

Pink – Stupid Girls

My troublesome Trust Demon awakes

I’m meeting The Saffa and it’s a sunny, tranquil Sunday morning. It’s the end of September and unseasonably warm. I’m not sure how today will play out after the petty arguments of earlier in the week. We kiss hello outside the Royal Exchange at Bank and she’s immediately her chatty self. My concerns appear misplaced; it seems as if nothing bad has ever happened between us.

We make our way down to the Docklands Light Railway where we get a front-row seat on the train so that she could experience what a train driver sees. We alight at Canary Wharf to walk around the Cathedrals of Capitalism; she has never seen anything like it. Then we get back on the DLR and travel under the Thames into Greenwich. We walk around the village area, feeling the history then wander around the Old Royal Naval College where she is captivated by the chapel which has an impressive Baroque interior.

The Maritime Museum is next and she wants to stop and look at every exhibit which is natural, but we could spend the entire day here while I have plans to show her much more. By now we are getting hungry and I lead us to a nearby indoor market where we buy and share all sorts of foreign nibbles and delicacies. The Saffa smelt somebody’s chips doused in vinegar and salt, so she craves that. We find a traditional English fish and chips shop where she gets her craving satisfied. We stroll off to Greenwich Park where we lie on the grass eating our motley lunch. When we finish eating she asks me to lie on top of her; it was a feeling that she just had to have. I oblige despite feeling very self-conscious with hundreds of people around us. She really lives without boundaries.

Next I take her up the hillock that is presided over by the Royal Greenwich Observatory, the place where time is measured from. Unknown to her it is also where I asked my ex-wife to marry me. It’s closed, so we stand outside at the vantage point taking photos of the surrounding London skyline and Canary Wharf. We walk back down the hill and along the way we are passed by an absolutely stunning Eastern European girl dressed in all white to match her hair. The Saffa spots her and remarks, “Did you see the heels she was wearing?” I pretend to not have seen her. In my head I was remarking to myself how attractive that girl was, but how I could never ever have the kind of connection with her that I have with The Saffa. There’s a lot to be said for cultural similarity. My days of being attracted to Slavic women are over.

It’s dusk and we end up at a Jamie’s Restaurant where we find a comfy sofa and share coffee with pastries. Conversation never once runs dry between us, but that would never be a problem because the Saffa is something of a chatterbox, so much so that she is prone to talking over people. It’s rare for me to finish a sentence, which I’m starting to find annoying.

The only blight on the day was that she was regularly venting about her work situation. She’s now in a dispute with her employers about her Wednesday afternoons off. From what I could see The Saffa was taking liberties with her time off and her employers were laying down the law, but she didn’t see it that way. No amount of trying to apply reason would change her outlook. Fearing becoming embroiled in yet another silly argument I have to change the topic several times before she lets go of it.

It’s getting late so we head for the trains, catching the DLR back to Canary Wharf where we change to the Jubilee Line. I have to change en route to get my train home, so I have to say goodbye to her on the train. Not the best kind of good night kiss, it’s always too rushed.

I have enjoyed the day. Is she ‘The One’? In my heart I don’t think so. There’s something about her that is bothering me and I can’t identify it. It’s stopping things from blossoming. Do I enjoy spending time with her? Very much so, but it feels more like friendship and not love. What am I going to do? I’ll give it time.

Late on Monday she tells me that some old high-school friends were wanting to meet up later that night. She loves spontaneity, so I think nothing of it, other than wondering about her employer’s opinion given the current impasse about her taking time off. The next day on Facebook she posts several pictures of her with three guys in a pub. I see no problem.

On Wednesday The Saffa comes up to my place. I make her a strong massaman curry which she loves. The spicier they like the food, the better the lover; I’m convinced of it. We watch some Californication which she is becoming addicted to. Almost predictably we started making out then fucking on my sofa.

Krazy Girl contacting me the other day made me realize that I regret not filming her and I having sex. It’s a strangely satisfying thing to see yourself in action and it helps to improve technique. Whether or not things work out between me and The Saffa, I want some memories of us together, pleasuring each other. I had recharged my camera battery the day before, so in a premeditated fashion I began filming us fucking.

We’re both naked and The Saffa is sitting on the footstool, looking at the television. I switch the camera on, position it perfectly on a table and point it towards her.

“No, what are you doing?!” she exclaims as I stride over to her.

Without saying a word I point my cock towards her face and all resistance is broken. She comes forward and latches her mouth onto my penis like a starving baby getting its bottle. The footage ends with her being on all fours on my sofa, her d-cup breasts flopping about. I’m fucking her from behind, pulling her silky blonde hair back with one hand and I’ve got a thumb up her bum.

“Ja, fuck me. Ooh, fuck me harder,” she shouts out just before she cums with that little squeal of hers.

Still on The Hook she slumps forward onto the sofa while I continue to do my thing. It isn’t long before my cock is pumping and squirting hot, sticky cum into her tight little pussy that has a slight curvature in just the right place. I pull out and she spins around and sucks my cock dry.

We cuddle up on the sofa under a throw for a while, but eventually the time nears for her to have to go back to work in London. I don’t want her situation with her employers getting any worse because of me.

“Sweetie, isn’t it time to catch a train?” I ask.

“No, I want some more of your cock,” she says, leaning over to my groin, pushing the throw away.

“Hey, you don’t want to get into trouble at work,” I counter.

“Agh, fuck them,” she says as she latches onto my cock and starts sucking away on it.

I look down at her in disbelief and she does what she does best. What is her problem? Does she have some kind of death-wish going on? I try to figure it out while she expertly brings my orgasm to fruition and savours the proceeds.

Not long afterwards we’re scampering towards my train station as her train is arriving. A hurried kiss sees her off. It’s just turned eleven o’clock, the time when she’s supposed to report back to her charge, but the trains will take another hour to get her there. I turn and saunter back home, my head full of questions about her self-destructive behaviour.

On Friday morning The Saffa tells me that she had used up all her nights off for the week. Then later in the day tells me that she’s meeting her old school friends again that night.

Hmm, my trust demon awakes and rattles his cage, yearning to break free. I haven’t felt him for a while, thinking him in an icy hibernation, his black little heart frozen. I’m wrong. He’s alive and well and trying to protect me.

I go onto The Saffa’s Facebook page and do some reconnaissance. I notice that in preceding weeks, when she was supposed to be “working”, that she was out partying with friends. She told me that she only gets Wednesday afternoons and Saturday afternoon until Sunday evening off. The date and time-stamp of photos that she and other people have posted of her tell me otherwise. My analytical eye sees that one of the guys has appeared in photos thrice in the past two weeks.

She’s lied to me, there’s a mystery man on the scene and she is deliberately courting danger with her employers.

I see trouble ahead…

Lindsey Buckingham – Trouble