Evan returned to his clean, white and sterile-smelling hotel room decorated in black, gray and white colors. He hadn’t been able to think of anything but Mia since he laid eyes on her. It was unusual for him to give any woman (even the most beautiful) much more than 10-minutes thought.
Mia though was different. “Why?” he wondered to himself. What made this blonde woman any more special than the hundreds of others he had fucked and left? He didn’t really know to be honest. She was definitely gorgeous, but again, he had fucked world-class beauties in his time. A wealthy father and three handsome and older brothers guaranteed that bonus. Models, A-list actresses with fake tits, puffy pink lips, and white, shining teeth with bodies so hot most men would get hard with just one glance at them. He licked, tasted, fondled, caressed, and banged them all. So to him, beautiful looks were almost mundane.
He kept wondering, “What? What about her?” It wasn’t like him to get “schmoopy” over a woman. What was it about Mia that she just got right under his skin and made him obsess like a teenage boy with his first crush?
He went to the mirror and looked at his visage in the reflection. The hair on his head was as thick and blonde as it had been since childhood. He never had any trouble getting dates or making girls’ hearts melt. His buddies were never half as lucky or blessed with his good DNA that kept him with little effort muscular, chiseled and model-looking handsome. His best friends often asked Evan his secret to success with the ladies. Evan just told them, “Pay attention to the details, man.” This statement always led to more questions to which Evan would gladly just show them.
They were at the local Irish pub (this was during his college days at Michigan State University), and he spotted his friend Leslie at the bar with three of her girlfriends. Evan motioned to his buddies, Roy and Steve, to follow him. The group of guys led by Evan ascended upon the girls; Leslie was the average-height, curly-haired red head in the middle. She was cute with brown freckles on her reddish tan skin. Evan tapped her shoulder. She turned around, her light green eyes lit up, and she smiled in recognition since she knew him from her economics class.
“Hey,” he said coolly. “You ladies hanging out?”
They all nodded in unison, which amused Evan. He turned and introduced Roy and Steve, who stood there like clueless idiots with their mouths gaped and eyes wide. “Pathetic,” thought Evan, who gave them a look that meant “watch,” and they became rapt on his every move.
“So hey Leslie … Wow! Nice blouse,” he reached out and fingered the collar and stepped closer. “Great color on you,” he cooed in a low, gravelly, sexy voice. “And did you curl your hair? It looks beautiful. You look gorgeous, and so do your friends. Best looking women in the room,” he said with a wide smile and so much charm it just seemed to drip off him.
Leslie smiled proudly and said “Thanks,” as she eagerly embraced the compliments. Then all of her attention went to Evan. Her body shifted toward and into him like a Lego. He matched her stare with his own. She started flipping, twisting and fingering her long hair. Pretty soon, she was touching his bicep in ownership, too. They were caught up in a deep conversation of some sort while the other two guys watched in awe and still couldn’t manage to say one syllable to her friends. While Evan managed to ferry Leslie off for some action, the other two guys remained behind while her friends tired of their useless staring and drifted off toward two hot guys who had just entered the bar.
Later that night after Evan returned to their frat house from a tryst in Leslie’s dorm room, he educated the boys with one simple clue to his success, “Dudes, it’s all about details,” he smugly relayed again and grinned. “She was hot. Five times, guys, five times.” They gave him the proverbial nods and grins of approval followed by chugs of beer and pensive, confused stares. Of course, the guys remained just as ineffective with the girls as ever, but Evan tried.
Now he was a seasoned sex god and the guy most would call a “womanizer” or “player”. “Mia,” he whispered in his thoughts. How was he going to play her and win this game? She was beautiful and pleasing to the eyes with a long, lithe body and legs that in his estimation “went on for forever.” When he had walked up to the booth and looked her right in her crystal blue eyes, he felt something instantly familiar almost like déjà vu as if he knew her already. It was a queer sensation that from the moment he shook her hand he felt a jolt pulsate through him like a sudden shock one might experience from static electricity and touching another person. He had immediately gazed into her eyes, and her eyes flickered back at him. The attraction was so immediate and intense he had to force himself to focus.
Any other woman he typically wondered what it might be like to have sex; but this one he had fantasies of true, deep and connected lovemaking – something Evan felt sure he had never done. Yes, he had nonstop and often fantastic sex, but he never got emotional over women. In fact, he had a habit of immediately dumping a woman who appeared to get too attached. He didn’t want to deal with genuine feelings nor did he want any real, emotional neediness of any kind exhibited from a woman toward him.
He wasn’t a big fan of major attachments. He favored himself indifferent to the women in his life. Yes, he felt friendship and some level of care, but he largely never allowed real bonds to form. Deep, connected sentiments posed a danger to the barbwire fence he forged around his heart. He had a keen ability to compartmentalize his feelings and control them. He needed, no he had to have absolute control to turn on and off any feelings toward a woman. Control gave him a cold distance and objectivity that enabled him to leave when things got to be too much or he felt vulnerable – and he didn’t like vulnerability.
He refused to spend too much energy on one woman. He used the excuse of wanting a variety and liking women too much to go further in any relationship than perhaps living with a woman, which he was already doing. Yet strong, affecting attachments threatened his style of living free and experiencing quick and pleasurable trysts – this is what he told himself anytime something “felt” like it might go too far.
Mia’s mere presence made him feel an instant sense that the distance he labeled his emotional boundaries had been miraculously and without explanation breached. Moving past this line would make him enter a vast, clouded valley where the bottom was fogged over. Could he go there? His basic reaction was instantly no. He didn’t want to go there – it was not the point. Even if he wanted to explore the unknown, the wisdom of coloring outside of the lines was careless and stupid given his mission.
He became more thoughtful for a moment. He questioned his own humanity. Wasn’t love a part of being human? Wasn’t needing companionship natural maybe even primal and as basic as sexual urges, too? His mind raced with questions about his ability to even have a healthy relationship.
A few years ago, he had run into a woman who had turned out to be a therapist. They were both in a bar in Tucson, Arizona at the famous Hotel Congress. Evan was there on business. He was staying at the Westin on the outskirts of town. Friends had told him to stop at the hotel, and he had decided it sounded intriguing (it was supposed to be haunted). Sitting at a long, tall table with stools on each side, he had intentionally sat across from a dark-haired beauty with intense gray eyes that narrowed on her iPhone as she had texted someone. After he had managed to catch her attention, he found out her name was Annette.
He and Annette immediately engaged in a casual flirtation until Evan slipped up and admitted he was a little “girl crazy” and didn’t really have any lasting lovers. Well, except one, and he didn’t love her. Annette eyed him with sudden dogged and unusual interest that immediately shifted away from anymore fun flirting. She visibly shifted body language and looked at him with a renewed, more clinical interest.
“And why do you suppose that is?” she asked almost too casually.
Evan felt disconcerted as he realized his plan to find out what was under her sheer vanilla-colored blouse where we could see a hint of lace was derailed with this serious question. He measured in his mind whether to escape now and shift over to the cute blonde in the far corner with sweet freckles across her nose and a busty figure that appealed to him or stay and face this firing squad. As Annette eyed him with close interest, he decided why not play along. The cute blonde was just getting her first drink, and he expected she might be there a while longer.
“I don’t know. Why do you suppose that is?”
“Did you have a cold mother? You know, highly critical, cold and remotely loving only when she felt like it?”
Evan’s mother had passed away when he was young. He remembered very little about her, but he did recall she wasn’t the hugging type. His family was wealthy, and his mother loved her gin and tonics and the occasional smoke but only after dinner and with wine. He spent most of his young childhood tucked away in the nanny’s quarters where she virtually ignored him and plunked him in front of endless episodes of Sesame Street. He remembered more about Burt and Ernie and the famous “Rubber Ducky” than he did of his mother spending any quality time with him. And his mother and father traveled a lot. His brothers, triplets, were older and they had each other.
He looked at Annette and realized he didn’t want to have this conversation – not now and not here. He suddenly became uncomfortable and acted coldly as he tossed some bills down on the table deliberately in front of Annette as if he were paying for her time. Annette looked at the money. She got his number.
“Evan, you seem like a great guy underneath all that ‘baggage’. You cannot continue to use women, fuck them, and leave and expect to have a fulfilling life. Maybe if you get to the root of your problems, and they are problems believe me, you will find not only the right woman, but your promiscuous lifestyle will bore you. After a while sex is only sex – a physical, momentarily satisfying act. Now intimacy, love, caring and real closeness are not only infinitely more satisfying but way more pleasurable. But you won’t know until you’ve had it.”
She reached in her purse and extended a card that Evan only waved off.
“Well, if you want to get a little more self-aware …” she said with a casual shrug as she realized Evan was temporarily a hopeless case.
Evan sneered at her, looked at her card, and headed off toward the cute blonde.