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  • Writer's pictureLuke Ramer

Expensive Habit - Short Fiction

You can also listen to this story on YouTube as part of our Dark Fiction Theater!

I’m rushing down Ninety-Ninth Avenue just before midnight, although I don’t remember why, and I’m bloodthirsty. The decrepit buildings tower over me like they’re gonna collapse at any moment. An aggressive bum begs for change. I wanna strangle him to death but I can’t afford to waste my time. Instinct tells me to keep moving.

At the corner I come to The Nexus Nightclub, all neon lights and glamorous people and muscly bouncers outside. I see a blonde woman on the curb smoking a joint, wearing an expensive-looking fur coat. Tall with tan skin, exaggerated tits, tight purple skirt. I realize it’s the famous actress Mona Rochelle. It stops me in my tracks and my breath quickens. Goosebumps raise on my arms. I absolutely love her—I’ve jerked off to her nude scenes more times than I can remember. You could even say she’s my celebrity crush.

I approach. Break out the sweet talk. And she eats it up.

My limo—a long white stretch—shows up at the perfect time. I don’t remember calling a limo, but I figure—fuck it. I ask Mona if she’ll join me, and she giggles and gets into the limo without hesitation.

I catch a glimpse of my reflection in the glass and see why she’s so taken with me. I’m drop-dead handsome, although, oddly, I don’t recognize myself. I push the thought away.

The limo’s taking us to a luxury hotel, but something tells me time is running out, a clock ticking in my head, and I’m short of breath, and I can’t wait any longer, so I take her right in the back seat while we’re rolling down Mainline Avenue, blood ruining the leather seat as she screams. As I’m in her from behind, I take a champagne bottle and bash her over the head. I cum as she goes limp.

I instruct the limo driver to the pier, where I slash his throat with a shard of sparkling champagne glass and push the whole incriminating vehicle into the ocean. Blood and metal disappear beneath the water, gurgling under the crescent moonlight.

I struggle to catch my breath, shaking all over, and I’m alive for the first time in a long time. I look around for what to do next when I’m yanked back into reality.

Time’s up.

I’m sitting in a leather reclining chair, and everything is foggy and reeks like antiseptic. An overweight Middle Eastern girl quickly takes the needles out of my skull, getting the room ready for the next customer. My mind reaches back, not wanting the experience to end. But as she throws on the lights I squint my eyes, and I know it’s over.

I stand, knees wobbly, feeling something wet against my crotch. Looking down at my jeans, I realize I actually came during the experience. The best orgasm of my life, without a doubt—but I’m still blushing.

The attendant says it’s nothing to worry about. Happens all the time.

I awkwardly thank her, and hurry outta the room, through the dimly lit hall of the club, realizing how different this experience is from the other virtual reality joints. Not like the popular VRrcades where you can skydive, race cars, or blow up demons with enormous guns. Not like the underground Vorn Clubs that are quasi-legal where you can plug in, screw a computer that feels like the real thing, without fear of pregnancy, STDs, or commitment. In those virtual realities, you’re still aware of yourself. Still conscious.

This was something else, something primal, the major leagues.

As I walk out I avoid eye contact with the woman at the front desk who had signed me in and taken four months of my salary in payment. I can’t believe how much this cost me.

I figured this would satisfy a lust in me that I don’t fully understand, something I’m desperate to control. Instead, I salivate for more.

I’m dripping sweat as I step out onto the curb lined with skyscrapers reaching towards the night's storm clouds, realizing how long it’ll be before I can save enough cash for this experience again. I think about getting a second job, selling drugs, robbing a bank—anything to get me back to that feeling. That feeling of following the dark human urges we all have but are too scared to consciously acknowledge—let alone indulge.

I sigh and hail a cab as it starts to rain.

Across the street I spot a blonde hooker in a tight cheetah-print skirt staring at me with a meth-head smile. She looks a bit like Mona, I think.

A yellow cab pulls up, but I wave it away and cross the street. The hooker takes my hand, and I wonder—how much will this cost me?

Photo by Warren Wong

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