I’ve been sort of seeing this guy on and off for a few years now. My phone lights up — the little Snapchat ghost trapped in its yellow square.
I swipe it open and watch his square jaw crack out whispered words in a ten second spurt.
I balance life and death in my right hand while my left hand grips my steering wheel. Front-facing camera: on. Phone tilted to a flattering angle. Ten seconds of over-emoted lip-syncing that Fifth Harmony song on the radio. I didn’t flail my head around enough to stretch out my flubby chin.
Take two. “Give it to me I’m worth it.” Dance break. “Uh huh, I’m worth it.” I hit a red Light. Harder dance break. Timer: off.
I review my silliness. Smoulder: off. Chins in check. Send.
He tells me how cute I am. I almost rear-end a red Dodge Grand Caravan with a “Baby on Board.”
At night we stay up late. Two time zones stretch between us. I have to be at work in five hours, he in three. We’re still talking. Underwear: off. Romance: on.
Ghost icon. Swipe. Ten seconds of his perfect body splayed on a five-inch screen. I reciprocate, stretched out across my mattress so my every ripple is flattened out. I imagine his skin, drag my fingers across my shoulders like they were his.
Ghost. Swipe. Ten more seconds of the perfect, fleshy angles he wants me to see — I’m sure there are parts of him he’s hiding too: a crooked nostril, a tilted ear.
Reciprocate again — and so on and so forth until one of us falls asleep on the other. Off.
A relationship in the Digital Age: on.
Spencer Knight is a writer in Edmonton, Alberta — but don't tell a lot of people because he is not equipped to deal with the pressures of celebrity. He's currently a digital copywriter for FaBLOOMosity by day, and he's aching out a draft of his first book by night. His story "Screenshot" is the third prize winner in the flash CNF category of our inaugural Short Forms Contest.