New customer on Monday, calls himself Brekekexx2008, books an appointment for yesterday at 4 p.m. It turns out I know the guy when he shows up. Shy, a few pimples in his face. I’ve seen him at school. Never paid attention to him. Average Joe, tall for his age and not bad looking, even though slightly geeky. He’s not surprised to see me at all, tells me he’s known all along who I am. My pseudonym has been compromised, it seems. Tells me he’s had a crush on me for like forever. Oh my. But then we go through with it all, I tell him what he can do and what he can’t, and he’s fine with it. Sister Mary knocks on the door when he’s about to leave, so I have to tell him to quickly pull up his pants. When I let her in, he’s all dressed, just looks a little flustered. I tell her I’m tutoring him in math. Oh, is that so, she says, didn’t know math was your forte. Well, it really isn’t, but it was the first thing I could think of. Tells him she hopes I’ll do a good job before she walks out. He gets up, pulls out his wallet and hands me the bills. I can tell he’s all excited about what went down and possibly about being near me. Could I get to like this guy? For now it’s more like I can foresee embarrassment. I’ll probably run into him somewhere sooner or later. Then what? Hi, how are you? Or just pretend I don’t know him? As a precaution, I told him I wouldn’t know him outside these walls. He said that was fine. A new message from him today, asking for another appointment, with some emojis at the end. What to do? I’m doing this to make some bucks so I can buy clothes and go out, that’s it. Hope he doesn’t want to attach strings. How would I feel about strings? Would be the first time since Jase, the asshole who got me started in his group. I haven’t confirmed the date. Carmencita says I’m playing with fire, and that he’s too young. Wish I had clear feelings. I’m a mess of head, heart and clouds. Is that even something?
– María Angeles (© 2023)
Photo by Natasha Kasim on Unsplash