Archive for the ‘short story’ Category

Prompt: Cut the Strings | Word count:1005 (I tried!) | Genre:

Warning – adult content


Detail.  His palms sweat as he checks descriptions.

Mike’s hand wavers an instant before hitting the ‘send’ button. He leans back and cups his head in his hands. The stretch feels good.

Soon he can cut strings with his little problem.  Make it vanish.  Start a new life.

The rest of the week Mike fidgets around his desk but cannot work on that backlog glaring at him. He checks his phone more than usual, waiting for the confirmation-of-delivery bleep.  He stands up to stretch and looks at his colleagues; heads bent over their screens, logging the hours. He returns and pretends to work.

This is the danger zone.     The staring at the screen.    The pretending to work.

He feels the familiar, irresistible twitch.  The urge to click the saved Bookmark hidden amongst innocent sites.

The tag is blurry, yet prominent – PornHub.

Mike feels dizzy, tries to remember the breathing he practiced at his last counseling session. The therapist’s face takes shape between flickering images on his screen. He gasps, feels her eyes on him and closes the window. She will be proud.

He wipes over his eyes to get rid of her stare and to rub away gnawing non-satisfaction.  Mike checks around the office, everyone is busy. His thoughts drift to the past few weeks.


First the run-in with the boss.

“Mike, you are a capable man,” Boss tapped the desk. Mike feigned ignorance, but he wondered if he was sloppy with the history on his computer. “But personal stuff is interfering with your performance.”  Did Belle tittle-tale behind his back?“If you need to sort out your life, take time off rather than wasting office hours.” Boss pointed to the door. “And get help if you must.”

What help? Mike wanted to ask. Maybe Belle knew.

Then the ultimatum with Belle later.  She was more emotional than usual. She denied speaking to Boss, but she used the opportunity and turned it into another nagging session. “Please just talk to someone,” Belle pleaded. “How can we think of a future if you aren’t interested in sex?” “If you can’t accept me as I am then you better get packing,” he ignored her trembling lip.

“If not for us, then do it for you,” she whispered. “Maybe it’s an imbalance they can fix with medicine. Please see a doctor.”

“I can’t live with someone that thinks I’m sick.” Mike said. “Maybe we must call it a day.” They stared at each other. Belle turned around. She packed and left. He didn’t mind. Easier to be alone.

But Belle had the last say. She made an appointment with a specialist – the receptionist phoned to remind him. “I know nothing,” he said, trying to back out.  “There is a cancellation fee.” The sterile voice rattled off an unthinkable amount.  “Who can afford that?” Mike gasped. “I’ll be there.” He cursed as he clicked off his phone.

Mike went to the money-forced appointment; to prove that he was fine. He didn’t expect the details these medics needed; tests and questions and bloods and more questions and forms. Another forced appointment.  “To discuss the results and options of treatment.”

His confusion at the follow-up, was embarrassing.  “I am too young to have this…. this…” he couldn’t even pronounce it. He shivered.  “It’s not a disease, more a syndrome,” the doctor said with clinical coldness.  “Becoming more prevalent under young males between 18 and 24.”  “So I’m not sick? I’m not the only one?”

“It’s not a physical disease, Mike. It is a matter for a psychologist.” The doctor scribbled.  “You mean I’m a crackpot?” Mike cringed at the pitch in his voice.

“Research is ongoing but there’s an increase in Erectile Dysfunction.” The explanation came with an ice-glare.  “But that’s an old man’s disease.” Mike wanted to whisper, but the words fell hard on the tension between them. “How is it possible?” he rasped.

“With available porn online and uncensored TV, young men can’t form normal relationships. Physical arousal is achieved by digital stimuli.” The doctor continued, “I had a couple last week. Desperate for a baby. The only way he could get aroused was by watching porn on his phone while making love to his wife.”

“She was ok with it?” Mike wondered out loud. Why could Belle not accept that?

“She was prepared to tolerate it for a child of her own,” the coldness interrupted his musings. “Let’s focus on your problem.” He pushed an appointment card over. “We made this appointment for you, she is waiting.”

Mike felt cheated. Being forced into appointments was not his favorite pastime. As he walked into the waiting room, reading her name – Dr Darleen Demarigny – he remembered the doctor said the psychologist was a woman. He had a feeling that Belle organised that too, her revenge on the ease with which he could break up with her.

Pretty shrink, Mike thought.

“An addiction IS a disease.” She cut his excuses short on the first visit.  “It becomes all-consuming. It kills normal life.” Her unwavering voice bordered sympathetic. “It ends relationships, destroys careers.”

They spent following appointments talking, surprised at his frankness. She listened. Sometimes she wrote while he talked. It felt good.

He promised to wean himself. Although he got rid of Belle, he still had to keep promises to his therapist.


Keeping promises, he smiles as he deletes porn sites. Cutting the strings with his problem. Doc Darling (as he called her towards the end) said he’d be a new person once he’s given up his addiction.

He glances at the beeped message, his heart skips a beat. It is here. His new life about to start. Perfect timing. End of the day.

The parcel is in his foyer. With eager hands he unwraps it. Assembled.  Software installed as per instructions. He sighs with delight, touches her forearm.

“Hello Mike” she says, painted lips and perfect hair. He swallows.

“Hello Darleen.”

Japs are geniuses, he thought as he reads the manual:  How to Take Care of your Customized Sex Doll.


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