Catfish Part 4

catfish, noun: a person who sets up a false personal profile on a social networking site for fraudulent or deceptive purposes

Jason's day somehow gets even worse.

Even though I know the guy is an idiot, I can't help but think about the last thing he said. I mean, as shocking as it is, he's right. I think of myself as a rebel. Not one of the sheep. I'm too smart to just be herded along.

So why does it feel like that's what's happening?

I sit on my bed and really think about this.

On one hand, as embarrassing as it is, I do like this kind of... stuff. Girly stuff. And it's not hurting anyone, right?

On the other hand everything I've ever known tells me that this behavior is perverted and horrifying.

But I do things society disapproves of all the time, so is this really different? I mean, everyone hates internet trolls. It's just a matter of scale, right?

But on the other other hand I don't want to feel like a moron is manipulating me. And he has a motivation—a fucking creepy motivation—to want me to this. I shiver a little. What kind of freak would want to hang out while I'm wearing girly clothing? A real pervert, is who.

I ignore that when I shivered my penis also perked up a little.

Right, fuck. This is really for sexual reasons, isn't it? Mark framed it as some kind of weird freedom of choice thing. But it's really just a fetish in my case.

But I guess people are free to do all kinds of weird sex things—well, not EVERY weird sex thing. So that's not really helpful.

No, but the illegal things like bestiality (gross) are because it's hurting someone. You're having sex with someone. I'm not gonna do that.

So really, it boils down to that everyone hates it, but it doesn't actually hurt anyone except for grossing them out. Much like hoverboards. No, wait, bad example. Much like manbuns.

So I guess it's okay? Usually I trust my mind to use logical reasoning to arrive at whatever the right answer is, but even though I've done that I still feel uneasy.

But I know I'm gonna do it anyway.


Over the next few weeks I'm less and less worried about Mark barging in. I mean, that seal has already been broken, so to speak. Great, now I have a mental image of someone clubbing seals.

So there's multiple times when he walks in on me doing...well, you know. NOT masturbating. That's not what I meant. I'm classy and take that to the bathroom.

Not that I've done that in these clothes because then I'd have to go out in the hall, where someone might see me. Stupid shared bathroom. Only reason I miss home.

One day Mark walks in and as I said, I don't exactly freak out... until I notice that there's someone else with him. A girl.

She sees me and gives an awkward wave. Shit, this is like a nightmare. Maybe I'll wake up...

“Oh, hey,” Mark says to me. “I didn't realize you'd be here.” Where the fuck did he think I would be? It's not like I exactly go out much. “This is Audrey.” He leans over and whispers to me, “What name do you want me to say for you? Sorry, I should asked you before now.”

Well, he's really put me in a bind. I guess I don't really have a choice here. I mean, I feel like even a blind person could tell I'm not actually a girl, but if I give my real name it'll definitely give the game away.

“Alicia,” I announce louder than his whisper, and shake—Audrey's?—hand. Wait was that weird? Do girls do handshakes? At least I gave a wimpy one, that's a thing girls do right?

“So what brings a nice girl like you to a dump like this?” she says in a wacky voice. I think she's going for like an impression of a 1920s dude but it's not working.

Wait, shit. What am I doing here? This building doesn't allow girls and guys to share a room. Well, officially. Sometimes a boyfriend/girlfriend will crash for a while and they don't seem to care. Shit, shit, I hope that's not gonna have to be my excuse.

I glance at Mark to save me. He just stands there with a dumb look on his face. For all I know he's already told her all about his weird crossdressing roommate. I don't know if she's his girlfriend or what. I can't really use claim to be his girlfriend if that's the case, not that I want to do that. Gross. No, shut up brain, it's gross.

What am I, in elementary school? Boys have cooties? Wait, never mind, that would imply I'm a girl. Never mind. Ignore that.

Mark FINALLY responds. Why did I have to be stuck with the dumbest of all roommates? “Um, we met online and hung out at one point. She's just staying here to visit some friends.” He glances at me and I nod subtly. It could be worse. At least he didn't claim...well, you know.

“That's a good way to get yourself murdered. Hanging out with internet weirdos,” she jokes, I hope. “Nah, I'm just kidding. You seem cool.”

She glances at Mark. “Your roommate's out?” I freeze. Shit, he better not fuck this up.

“I haven't seen him since this morning,” he says carefully, slightly emphasizing the him. I want to facepalm. Is he TRYING to give this away?

She doesn't seem to pick up on it, thank god. Not that I believe in him. It's just a phrase.

“That's too bad. I wanted to meet him. From what you've said he seems cool.”

Now I'm really confused. Why would he even talk about me enough for her to think that? It's certainly not like I go around advertising him. For roommates we hardly know each other.

Mark leans forward towards me again. “Sorry, but could you leave?” he asks. “I need the room.” His eyes flicker to the side.

Oh god. Gross. I guess that makes sense with him thinking I'd be gone. I'm out of here.

He quirks his eyebrows and jerks his head toward the door. Yeah, I get it, I get. I'm pissed. Does he really expect me to go out dressed like this?

Wait, shit. I can't really change while Audrey's here either. Not without her realizing that both “Alicia” and Mark's roommate are weirdos—or a weirdo, anyway. I'm trapped. There's no good option here.

Mark's eyes are flickering between me and the door. GOD. I grab my backpack, which already has my keys and phone in it in, and slam the door as I leave.

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