FICTION | The Boyfriend Pact
“Whatever happened to a boyfriend,
the kind of guy who makes love ‘cause he’s in it?”
—Liz Phair, Fuck and Run
Excerpt from the Encyclopedia Erotica:
The Buck-Fifty Boyfriend, in his natural habitat, is totally unnatural. A social construct, created by the random pairing of two writers in an unidentified Chinese restaurant in Toronto, the Buck-Fifty Boyfriend is the product of one misnomer plus one Double-Dog Dare. The result of such experimentation yielded the first ever boyfriend to be purchased for just the price of a cup of National Chain coffee.
This so-called “Buck-Fifty Boyfriend,” one Mace Dixon, had previously coupled with single (and, occasionally, engaged) adult females in his native Niagara Falls, Ontario. Following his purchase by a woman named Dani Pierce, much confusion and heartache – the sorts of things commonly associated with the Long-Distance Relationship (see entry below) – ensued. Whether or not this confusion and heartache was directly linked to his status as a Buck-Fifty Boyfriend remains unclear to outside sources, as the relationship between Ms. Pierce and Mr. Dixon is also of the Long-Distance variety. Testing is currently underway, with the hope of uncovering more conclusive results.
The habits of the Buck-Fifty Boyfriend might best be described as unpredictable, though they may also be considered odd. In light of his status as a poet, the Buck-Fifty Boyfriend often finds himself drawn to literary events and the people who organize or participate in such events. More specifically, he is welcomed into the homes and lives of independent writers, artists, publishers and the like, and shuns corporate versions thereof.
Occupation dictates lifestyle, thus the Buck-Fifty Boyfriend smokes, drinks and behaves appallingly in order to disguise his true feelings, though when he finds himself alone with the right woman, he may occasionally bare his soul and/or his body. The Buck-Fifty Boyfriend has been known to lie outrageously, just to see what sort of reaction he will get from his audience.
At 5’8”, the Buck-Fifty Boyfriend is of average male height, though scrawny, pale and bleary-eyed from chronic insomnia.
The Buck-Fifty Boyfriend, or Bee-eff dollarfitticus, is currently on the endangered species list, with Mr. Dixon identified as the first and perhaps last specimen of this rare breed. There are no Buck-Fifty Boyfriends in captivity at present, and no plans for a breeding program at this time.
 National Chain coffee cost $1.50 in Ontario as of October 2010;
prices may vary throughout Canada, due to inflation and other
factors. The U.S. does not currently offer Buck-Fifty Boyfriends,
perhaps as a direct result of their significant
lack of National Chain coffee outlets.
Cosmo article proposal
FAKING IT: Imaginary relationships in the real world
by Dani Pierce
I’m a great girlfriend: attentive, loving, smart, sexy, fun to be with. In short, everything a guy could want. But in exactly two months, Jake is going to break up with me. I’ll write him pathetic, tormented letters begging him to take me back, and he will break my heart in yet another place by returning all of my mail unopened.
I’m not psychic, nor am I just your run-of-the-mill, Grade A paranoid. I’m an Imaginary Girlfriend™, and men pay me to pretend that we’re dating.
The Imaginary Girlfriend is a simple concept: lonely guys contact one of the available “girlfriends” listed on the Imaginary Girlfriends website, and engage their services for up to two months at a time. The “girlfriends” send hand-written love letters, personalized e-mails, and even small gifts to their clients, in exchange for $30 to $45 for their services. Girlfriends may also choose to leave voicemail messages or engage in online chats in order to make the relationship appear more realistic. As the website notes, these are “real girls, imaginary relationships.” The question is how people can still separate artifice from reality once the word “girlfriend” is brought into the equation.
While many people maintain long-distance relationships with folks they’ve met online, the world of Imaginary Girlfriends is a bit seedier. Though the girls aren’t selling sex and never contact their clients directly (in order to protect their privacy), there is definitely a whiff of the adult entertainment industry to the proceedings.
Most girls promise photos with every letter, and a quick survey of the girls who are currently listed as “booked to capacity” shows a bevy of scantily clad young ladies. Meanwhile, the girls who choose to remain covered up also remain perpetually available. Apparently just looking like the hot girl next door isn’t enough; a true “girlfriend” must promise something less G-rated to get any attention and, thus, make any money.
Professional girlfriends must prove that they are 18 or older (i.e. the legal age of consent in most U.S. states and Canadian provinces), and they are paid a tiny percentage of what writers typically earn for their efforts, giving the impression that this is not really about writing innocent love letters at all. Indeed, starting in June, the company that runs the site will take a $10 “commission” from the girls’ profits, securing the company’s image as that of a digital pimp.
Still, one might ask: what sort of man would hire a girl to pretend she’s his girlfriend, especially if he’s not getting laid? Escorts at least serve this purpose, since sex is inherently baked into the deal. Imaginary Girlfriends, on the other hand, are truly for the sake of image alone. Tap the numbers of your credit card into the computer and you’ll get love letters drenched in perfume, photos to jerk off to, and optional voicemail messages to play for your disbelieving friends. But who couldn’t score these same trappings of love (or lust) from the average long-distance relationship for free?
It seems that only those who can’t convincingly fake a relationship must pay for one, but it is uncertain whom this service benefits. The girls are underpaid, the guys are undersexed, and despite the warning posted on the website warding off “those who may be unable to differentiate between fantasy and reality,” who’s to say that stalkers wouldn’t be able to breach the company’s lackluster security to track down their “girlfriends” for unwanted real-life contact?
Indeed, why would any girl truly want to become an Imaginary Girlfriend for little to no actual social or monetary benefit when she could become someone’s real-life girlfriend and be pampered by someone she truly adores?
 Not his real name.
No boyfriends, real or imaginary, were
harmed in the production of this article.
All men are not created equal: Of Albertans and Tyler Durden
Blog posted at 11:59 PM by Dani Pierce
Six-foot-something giants, lean and hard and lovely. Cowboys with leather hides, encasing poetic souls. Mad cows that destroy your mind. Real men. Alberta is the place for these kinds of fantasies, and the province seems to manufacture stereotypes like they’re going out of style.
Yet these living, breathing stereotypes are exactly what make Albertans interesting. For Montrealer Dani Pierce, there’s something brilliant and refreshing about the cowboy figure from the mysterious west: “I’ve never been to Alberta, but I suspect they’ve got some kind of Hot Man assembly line there. Every guy I’ve met from Alberta has been ridiculously attractive, quietly witty, and amazing in bed. For the love of all that is holy, will more of you please move to Montreal?”
Pierce is not alone. Many woman claim to want something they refer to as “a real man,” but what does that mean, exactly? What are real men made of these days? Iron? Steel? Graphite? Mahogany?
The oft-cited standard for masculinity today is Brad Pitt, particularly as he portrays the imaginary Tyler Durden in the film Fight Club. Pitt’s shaved head and bulging biceps, combined with his character’s dark edges and sexual voracity, all work together to cause women to salivate. To quote Pierce: “I want a lover who’s a fighter. A champion. Bitch in the kitchen, slut in the bedroom.”
Durden may not truly be the thinking woman’s Ideal Man, but he certainly comes close. If nothing else, the man has both ideas and ideals. He’s motivated (even if it is by insanity), and he’s everything his alter ego – the ineffectual Jack – lacks. Durden is the opposite of everything men hate about themselves, which is infinitely sexy. It’s no wonder women find themselves attracted to this nihilist in a tropical shirt.
Durden is everything women want and men want to be, perhaps most strikingly because he’s dangerous. Why do women perpetually choose the Man in Black over Mr. Nice Guy? Simple: because the bad guy’s got a sharpened razor edge that just might slip as he presses it against their necks. Because one never quite knows when he’s going to cross the line and slap someone with an open palm, knocking his victim across the room. There is something primal within this man, something screaming for escape. It’s all sex and violence, that fatal Freudian duo.
Smart men and women know that’s not all there is to life, no matter how easily sex and violence take each other’s hand. There is something more to the equation than simple wham, bam, thank you, ma’am. Instead, it’s the thrill of the chase, the hunt, the bloody endgame, submission and surrender. The biting and scratching are the best parts, because they make the caresses so much sweeter by comparison.
The Perfect Man is Gay
Blog posted at 12:01 AM by Dani Pierce
My perfect hunk of man-meat, the one I secretly dream about, is gay. Okay, okay, that’s a lie. He’s not gay; he’s just taken in every sense of the word and might as well be gay because he’s that completely not into me. And if you want to know the truth, most of the guys I’ve fallen for have always been prey to rude comments from friends like “Are you sure he’s not queer with that acting/painting/writing thing he does?” Artists are fey; what’s your point? So anyway, I guess it’s not such a secret now, in which case I might as well tell you about my dream.
I promise this won’t be your typical annoying dream story. 125 words or less, I swear!
I dreamt about Art School Boy (that’s my perfect man; he’s a sculptor) last night. He was lying next to me in bed, so very close, so very real. He rolled over and kissed me with a passionate gleam in his eye, and I covered his mouth with my hand to ask, “What are you doing?” He’s in love with someone else, you see. A certain Catriona. I prefer to refer to her as Catatonia; apparently she makes him “googly-eyed.” Anyway, I can’t remember what he said about her. Maybe, “It’s over with that bitch,” or “I never loved her the way I love you, darling!” Something fantastic and unbelievable. Some soothing lie.
Hey, it’s my dream. I can do what I want with it. (That’s 113 words, thank you very much. I always keep my promises.)
See, I still want him to say those things, even now that I know he and Little Miss Catastrophe are an item. My brain knows he won’t ever say those things, but my heart keeps stupidly hoping and aching. I’m cold, alone in a gigantic bed, tossing and turning at the shores of sleep like a fish gasping for breath on land. It’s awful, and there’s nothing that can be done. Nothing to do but wait for time to heal all wounds.
Can time heal gaping holes in the soul? Time simply separates, makes distant. Time doesn’t actually heal anything at all. It just deadens the senses, dulls the memory. And maybe it’s cells dying and regenerating that do all the work. I’ll lose the ones that contained my love, my doomed longing, my obsession. They will be shucked off like dead skin against the pumice of time. But I will be worn down, too. I won’t be able to smile the way I used to. I will not laugh as melodiously. I’ll be tinged with a certain acid, the ash of a cigarette, the sourness of milk gone bad. I can already feel it; everyone does. They comment occasionally: “She’s so bitter.” As if they can taste me on their tongues. As if they have desired me and turned away, mouths twisted by the salt they thought would be sugar.
I wish he gave a flying fuck. That he might fly out on a whim for a fuck, rather, from Toronto to Montreal on a non-stop flight. It’s only an hour by plane. It’s worth the $300. I’d make it worth the price. But maybe that’s the problem. I’m not sure how he sees my value. Is it just dollars and cents? Was I just a hole for him to fuck? He says that he loves and respects me, just not that way. And what other way do I want?
So I try to focus on his negatives instead of his positives. I try to list the things about him that are despicable, or at least annoying. It makes it easier to let go. If he’s not perfect, then he wasn’t the man for me. He has a stupid haircut. He’s got an overactive mind, spinning off in too many directions at once, and can’t keep the thread of a conversation from getting tangled and twisted. He leaves everything ‘til the very last minute and then gets overstressed. Oh, and he left me to wander a strange city alone while he shopped for an apartment on the last weekend possible – the one for which I’d paid $300 to visit him. So maybe he made up for it with kisses and caresses and home-cooked meals and sincere apologies, but I’m still holding this grudge because I have to – because otherwise I am stuck with my longing for all the perfection I’ve lost.
Perfection… why do I keep chasing that rainbow, looking for a pot of gold that doesn’t even exist?
Date: Thur, 10 Nov 2010 23:31:02 -0500 (EST)
From: “Dani Pierce”
To: “Mace Dixon”
I’ve been dying to fuck you again. I know we shouldn’t do it this way, condomless, so completely naked, the friction heightened by the knowledge that this is dangerous, wrong... but we will. It feels so much better this way, sliding together like seals. I love the heat of your cock up against my slippery cunt. Just resting it there I can feel my blood pressure rise, my heart beating faster and faster. I am taut, waiting for you to shift, waiting for you to force your way in. But you just wait, knowing that it drives me crazy, feeling the way my pussy throbs with desire. You tease. (Don’t stop.) You bastard. (God, I love it.)
You promise me blood and sex. I’m not sure what you intend with the blood. I picture something dreadful. I picture fistfights and other manly forms of violence, designed to destroy. I have never understood this male desire for annihilation. The hunger for blood, your own trickling from busted knuckles, proving... what?
But I can see some thrill in it now. The danger, the desire. I wonder if you will hit me. I wonder if you are ever violent with the ones you love. I wonder what I would do if you were. I wonder if I should trust you the way I do. It’s a little late for that. I am always weak when it comes to pleasure.
So let it begin. Let us return to where I left us, poised at the moment of penetration, your body burning next to mine. Put your lips against my neck and kiss softly. Trace a path from my neck to my earlobes. Tickle my inner ear with your tongue. And while I am sighing, push yourself inside gently. Press your hand against the small of my back. Hold me there as you lick and suck, as you pump inside me. Slowly now, slowly. Breathe. Kiss me as I lean my head back. Kiss me as I kneel over you. Kiss me as I fuck you or you fuck me, who can tell anymore? Let this happen. Let yourself feel everything. How does it feel to be inside me? You are huge. I feel so small. I wonder how you can fit at all. But you do, and you slip in and out with that delicious friction of flesh on flesh, and I want this to go on all night.
We fuck amidst words, so many words. Books crush against soft skin. Paper cuts tender flesh. Words tattoo us, smear madly as we use markers to scribble our own stories on thighs, forearms. Libraries fall upon us, a hail of words, a capsized shipwreck of ink seeping into our bodies. A hardcover spine pokes into my own vertebrae. I can taste the glue, the paper, the chemical bath of the printing press when you kiss me. Ejaculate congeals on pages of poetry, the sincerest form of flattery.
We sleep. You tell me I curl into you in the night. I wake up with your lips on my neck, my hands gripping your shoulders, your urgent cock pressed up against my thigh.
Date: Thurs, 18 Nov 2011 12:17:42 -0500 (EST)
From: “Dani Pierce”
To: “Mace Dixon”
Subject: one year
So, I’ve been single for almost a year now, Buck-Fifty Boyfriend not withstanding. The first three months or so were hell, plain and simple. After that, things got better. And now I’m used to being alone, so much so that the idea of having a real live boyfriend perplexes me. Why would I want to see the same dude every night? Oh, wait, there’s that thing some people call Love. I wonder what that’s all about?
In no particular order, here are some recent boy-related events that have taken place in my life:
A friend made a sneak-attack on me with his lips.
Art School Boy told me we can’t flirt anymore, which turned out to be his weird way of joking around, which means we can still flirt, which means he told me he thinks my tits are hot.
I went to a bar on Friday night and got hit on by a man with grey hair (why am I oh-so-attractive to the over-50 set, anyway?).
A Lebanese dude selling me slices of pizza told me I had a nice smile. Lebanese dudes are always telling me I have a nice smile. I think that is as far as they go with non-Lebanese girls, ‘cause that’s all I ever hear from them. ATTENTION LEBANESE BOYS: LET’S HAVE SEX.
My So-Called Protégé told me he decided, before we met up in person, that he wasn’t going to have sex with me. He also denies that this is a way of tricking me into talking him into it, which I think is a trick in and of itself. He also declined my offer to service him in the bathroom when he mentioned that he was extremely horny.
Every dude I am ultra hot for lives in Alberta, whereas I do not.
I was shot down by a semi-famous poet. Apparently I am not worthy of being made into a poem about some heartless Montreal fuck, or else I am much less attractive than I think I am. Either way, ouch.
Did I mention that I finger-gunned my crush after class a few weeks ago? I’m so suave.
Obviously, I need pointers on how to be smooth. I need a technique for picking up boys. I need to find some boys who live in this goddamn city and don’t sport wolf-band haircuts and crummy facial hair. I need a boy who is well groomed and fun and who can pay for dinner, ‘cause I am broke as fuck. I can pay him back in blowjobs. I will be accepting applications shortly. Live-in boyfriends are welcome, so long as they don’t mind horribly cramped quarters with dirty laundry piled everywhere.
I miss you,
The Boyfriend Pact
When, in the course of human relationships, it is deemed necessary to use the terms “Boyfriend” or “Girlfriend,” some may find themselves troubled by negative associations (hereinafter “Baggage”). Such Baggage must be properly addressed before the relationship advances to a more critical point; hence the creation of The Boyfriend Pact by Dani Pierce (hereinafter “Sex Bomb,” or simply “Dani”) on November 13, 2011 (hereinafter “the date that shall live in almost, but not quite, infamy”), after some prodding by Sonya Raja, Dani’s friend and confidante.
In an effort to create clear boundaries between acceptable and unacceptable maneuvers between the participants (hereinafter “Participants”), Dani and Mace Dixon (hereinafter “Mace”), the following document has been drawn up for the reader’s consideration. Any and all terms may be considered individually for discussion, and both parties should consider this a legally non-binding contract of sorts, fully dissolvable at any time and open to future revisions. To whit:
Dani and Mace may, henceforth, choose to refer to one another as “Girlfriend” and “Boyfriend,” respectively. This does not preclude the possibility of referring to one another by each party’s Given Name or by any other amusing Term of Endearment as preferred by either party. (N.B.: “weasel” does not constitute a Term of Endearment.)
Some may suggest that the terms “Boyfriend” and “Girlfriend” denote a deeper meaning than that which is intended by the Participants. In full, the current understanding of these terms, and the subsequent relationship from which the terms stem, is as follows:
Neither Participant expects any of the following from the other: the sun, the moon, the stars, the world, Pluto, Mars, Venus or any such heavenly body as may now, or in future, exist.
Neither Participant feels that the current relationship (hereinafter “The Relationship”) is necessarily destined for such serious events as: living together, settling down, the exchange of rings, the belief that some day marriage will be proposed, the actuality that marriage will transpire, children will be born and raised, both will grow old and die together.
Both Participants agree that neither is currently interested in sleeping with third parties, which includes: all people with any gender, animals and a variety of assorted individuals of various types collected together for the purposes of an orgy. If, at some point in the future, either party wishes to engage in sexual congress with any such third party, this clause may be contractually dissolved – prior to sexual interactions with the third party – via direct phone call, video chat, or face-to-face discussion. No other form of notification will be considered acceptable (i.e. text message, e-mail, snail-mail, faxed message, message relayed via telephone answering service or voicemail, message passed along via close friend – whether written or verbal, nor messages conveyed telepathically, through lucid dreams, smoke signals, carrier pigeons, etc.).
Both Participants agree that The Relationship is meant to be taken much less seriously than all this wordy legalese implies. To speak plainly and in the first person: this ain’t a fucking marriage contract! I’m not asking you for promises, Mace, except this one: that you want to see where this is going, and you’ll be honest with me when things get weird, tough, or just plain annoying. I don’t want to freak you out; I just want to know that you’re interested in seeing where all this might lead. Are you in or are you out? I don’t want to be your backup girl, the girl you hang out with because you don’t want the hassle of looking for someone better but expect that someday, somehow, she will just turn up on your doorstep. I am THE girl – for now, anyway. Maybe tomorrow you WILL meet somebody better, but that could happen anytime, even if you were married to the girl you thought was the Best Thing That Ever Happened To You. So yeah, I want something a little more meaningful than just fucking, but no, I don’t want anything too terribly serious. I just want to know that you’re there, that you’re curious, that you are open to the possibility that this could be great. I have a lot to give, if you’ll let me (see: lasagne). If you don’t want this, I’ll pack it up and move on before I get too attached. I figure (and I could be wrong) that maybe we are both too scared to say what we really want, which is to actually know that the other gives a damn. I won’t lie and say I’m in love with you, not in the way that people usually mean it, but you’re not just some dude I slept with, either. You’re fun to be with. You’re attractive and intelligent and aggressive and sweet and artistically dedicated and motivated and you give great massages and of course you’re amazing in bed. You are honest, sometimes brutally so, and I just want to be clear: I don’t want to be with someone who’s afraid of me. I think you picked me out of the crowd the night we met for a reason. Okay, maybe you just wanted to sleep with me, but I would hope that, given the time we’ve had to get to know one another, there is a little something more to it than that. Otherwise we could just skip the small talk and the dates and just fuck. But I like talking to you. I like listening to you. That’s all this needs to be. Just don’t make me into the backup girl, because I’m not someone you can settle for.
Laura Roberts writes steamy romance under the pen name Laure L’Amour, has written an entire novel in just three days, and publishes books that press buttons at Buttontapper Press (http://buttontapper.com). She currently lives in Sacramento, California with her artist husband and their literary kitties, and can be found on Twitter @buttontapper. When she’s not writing, she can be found editing manuscripts for indie authors, transcribing reality TV, watching romcoms, testing chocolate recipes, or searching for more typewriters to add to her collection.