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Right for Love

By:Aria Cole

ONE

Carly

“Girl.” My best friend leveled me with serious eyes, one hand holding a lock of blond hair that was wrapped around a searing hot curling wand above her head. “You need to get some action before those bits turn to dust.”

I burst out in a laugh. “My vagina will just incinerate and float away, huh?”

“What do they say…” She tipped her head to the side. “If you don’t use it, you lose it?”

I shook my head, watching as she unrolled the curl and let it bounce into a perfect ringlet as she got ready for her Valentine’s Day date tonight. Lord knows with whom this time. Saying Selma was a free agent was putting it lightly.

“I’m too busy for the kind of trouble you get up to at all hours of the night,” I finally answered.

“You know, someday all of that natural beauty—” She wagged a finger at my face “—is going to crack. That young virginal thing you got going on won’t last forever. Why you wasting all your youth with your head in a textbook? You have to live, Carly!”

I crossed my arms, thinking it was moments like these that made me both love and despise Selma for her natural, dark-eyed beauty and that effortless attitude she lived her life with.

“I’m not like you.” I finally shook my head. “I don’t do well with strangers or in groups or in public places on holidays…really, anywhere with people. I just don’t do well with people.”

“Bullshit.” Selma dropped another curl, twisting it softly then setting the wand on the counter. “Anyone can date now, no more awkward first dates or getting-to-know-you conversations. I downloaded this dating app. You just swipe right if the guy is a hottie, left if he looks like a douchenozzle. Welcome to dating in the modern world.”

“A dating app? You downloaded a dating app?”

“You know I like to spice things up in my life.”

I huffed, a little incredulous. I thought online dating was for nerds… Well, I guess I was technically a nerd, considering all I did was go to class, study, sleep, repeat. While Selma was partying the night away at clubs, kissing strange, sexy men, I was up late in a college sweatshirt and pajama pants, poring over anatomy books. With just one more year to go in my biology degree, the end was in sight. All the hard work of the last few years would finally pay off with a diploma and a set of skills that could allow me to get a job at any doctor’s office around the country as a physician’s assistant. The coursework had been brutal—I’d known it would be—but I was too far in to throw it away now, even if my grades were at the top of my class.

“I’m not using a dating app. I can’t even think about dating right now.”

“It’s not dating, exactly…” Selma pushed me in front of the mirror and picked up the wand, twisting a lock of my hair in her fingers and wrapping it around the barrel of the wand. “It’s more like…hookups.”

“Hookups.” I scrunched my nose, catching her eyes in the mirror.

“Yeah, you know, burn off some steam. Sex releases anti-stress chemicals to your brain, you know, and people who have an orgasm within thirty minutes of having a test perform up to five points higher. Five points! You need to fuck off some steam, Carly.”

“Oh my God.” I covered my face with one hand as she continued to curl random sections of my hair.

“I mean it. When’s the last time you got any play at all?” She twirled a soft lock at my face, adding a wave until it lay nicely with the rest.

“Uh…” I paused, pushing back through old dusty cobwebs to the last time I’d even let a man kiss me. “Freshman year, maybe?”

“Oh my God. You’re practically a born-again virgin. We need to get you that app.” Selma set the wand down on the counter. “Finished.”

I glanced up, shocked she’d curled my entire head of hair and was now separating the ringlets until they were only softly defined and falling over one shoulder.

“Your hair looks too good to waste.” Selma swiped my phone and held it up. “Smile, and give me that look in your eye.”

“What look?”

“That one that says you’re really horny but still a good girl.”

I narrowed my eyes.

“No, that looks like you might swipe their wallet when they’re finished. Softer. Less murder-y, more seductive.”

“Selma!” I squealed, swiping the camera just as the flash went off.

“Wait, let me see. That was a good one!” Selma pulled the phone from my hand, swiping to the last picture taken. “Look.” She thrust the picture into my face. “You look fucking hot. Let’s find you a man tonight.”

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