Habitué

Shame (2011). Even now, this film will occasionally creep into my consciousness and remind me how confronting cinema can be in the hands of an auteur. I watched this film, in my university days and it has haunted me since.

WARNING:

This story is about sex, addiction, and pornography. Please do not continue reading if you find such content offensive.

Insomnia gripped me like a desperate woman. Uncomfortably tight and uncompromisingly demanding.

I tossed aside my bed sheets and took several deep breaths. It was another dark, restless night alone. Just another one of those nights where nothing you do will knock you out. It is the middle of the week, and nothing has happened, yesterday or prior, is noteworthy.

I’ve always slept naked. Not only is it supremely comfortable, but it’s a habit I’ve found hard to shake off after lying in so many strangers’ bed in the exact same position, my eyes staring at the ceiling, the feeling of desire creeping up on my mind, and taking it and my body hostage.

I didn’t really feel like masturbating, but nothing else would put me to sleep. I have work the next day, in … 6 hours and I knew that if I didn’t masturbate, I would pull an all-nighter.

So I blearily shoved away my alarm clock and padded over to my computer. As the screen flickers on, I made sure to adjust my headphones so they sat comfortably on my head.

Soon, I am browsing my usual sites and the collection I have building away on my hard-drive. I like to download my favourite clips and organise them by category on my computer. My mind likes to start slow, browsing through artful nude photos of women, in various outfits and poses. My favourite ones involve a woman where she is just wearing panties and a dress shirt.

You can still see the shape of her breasts underneath the shirt, but it is just hidden by the transparent nature of the shirt. The reason why I prefer her to wear panties underneath, is because that is half the tease; half the fun. You can still see the shape of her vagina through the sheer lace panties, and the panties never take away anything from admiring her legs.

Your reward is when she finally takes it all off and lays it all to bare. Nude as the day as she was born and as resplendent as she will ever be.

Breasts, Butt and Thighs … the holy trinity all just hidden or accentuated just so in that outfit.

It’s a combination that never fails to get me hard.

Of course, only European porn does this sort of thing. They tend to try and make porn artsy. Typical Euro-pretentiousness, trying to make something vogue, despite its crude nature. Not that I am complaining, I am an customer after all. I download their photos all the time.

After feeling some heat begin to enter down below and my penis actually starts to awaken, I move onto my hardcore stuff. I prefer POV porn, as it is the only thing that really makes me feel like I am there, pounding and grunting away at the woman beneath me. I love it when the porn actress is a convincing screamer, when she knows how to time her moans and really stretch those vocals when she is about to orgasm.

What is wrong with vanilla sex? I hear you ask.

I’m just not overly fond of the male performers. It takes the immersion out of experience. It feels weird to be watching a couple go at it, even though in POV that is exactly what is happening. But that is just how my mind works. I can substitute another man’s penis for mine, but I can’t unsee his face.

After all, I want it to be me that is fucking the woman I am seeing on screen.

Besides, most of the male performers are damn ugly.

You think there would be more of a harsh criteria for male pornstars and their bodies.

As these thoughts chase through my mind, as I am watching scenes after scenes, I realise that I am still not getting close to that orgasm I crave.

What the hell is wrong with me today? I think to myself. What could it be? Why am I stroking my dick, but nothing is really working?

I move the mouse, onto something that has always worked for me. But now the tip of my penis is cherry red. It is getting rubbed raw. I am holding it too hard.

Cursing, I look at the bottom left of my computer. I’ve been at it for over an hour and nothing is working.

I want to sleep, but now my mind is too preoccupied with nude bodies and the moans of ecstasy.

So in desperation, I pick up my phone and dial my escort service I always use.

The silky tones of the operator answers almost immediately and promises a girl will be over in less than 10 minutes. I keep rubbing my penis the entire time I wait, eager to keep it hard for the call girl that will be over.

Time seems to stretch, and I find myself getting impatient and soft. So I start to envision where I will take this girl. The bedroom, the kitchen … up against the wall. Over by the balcony …. This perks me up again and I find something resembling pleasure creep into mind. My narcissistic, and lascivious thoughts are turning me on properly.

So by the time, I heard the soft knock at the door, I am ready for the stranger that will take me to Nirvana.

Blonde, buxom and bodacious, Serena walks in, and doesn’t even raise an eyebrow at my nakedness. Instead she grabs me by the arm and face and we begin to make out for an intense 30 seconds, before breaking apart.

My hands begin to peel the tight dress off her curves. She doesn’t hesitate to reach down and tug away at me. I toss her dress away and play with her pert breasts, enjoying how her nipples stiffen under my touch.

We start to make out again, no less intensely, as we slowly make our way to my king single bed. She wraps her legs around me, and I carry her to the bed, where I set her down roughly and scrabble at the bedside table for a condom.

She stops my search halfway, with her mouth around me, the sensation so sharp and agonisingly good that I stop moving and focus on the feeling of her tongue all over my cock.

However it is too good. The hour I spent masturbating had made me hard for too long. I ejaculate inside her mouth and at the peak of my orgasm, I feel this hot shame and frustration bubble over and pop inside my mind.

Serena looks disappointed in me., as she picks up a tissue and spits my load out. It was all too quick.

I can’t bear to look at her in the eyes, as she slips back on her dress and is gone from my apartment in less time than it took for her to arrive.

As I lie on my bed, I look across at my alarm clock and note that it was now only 4 hours to work. I had blown my load and 250 dollars in less than two hours, for an orgasm that felt terrible and unsatisfactory.

There was no way I was going to sleep now.

So, for the next 3 hours, I laid in bed, my eyes transfixed towards the ceiling and occasionally glancing over at the open window that overlooked the city of Melbourne. My mind went everywhere, from replaying scenes of porn in my mind to theorising what I was going to do at my job later today.

By the time the sun rose, I was also ready for work. Bitter and sour about my experience last night, a part of me was still fixated on getting a real orgasm.

The itch I couldn’t scratch.

I boarded the train with gritted teeth, and a terrible headache from my lack of sleep. I look a far cry from anything resembling Don Juan. However, despite my splitting migraine and baggy eyes, I still found the time to admire an attractive woman, in her mid-30s, with strawberry blonde hair. She was elfin in her looks, with porcelain skin.

She returned my gaze evenly, and we held each other’s eyes for a long time. I longed to do something with her throughout the entire train ride. My imagination pictured her naked, her long blonde hair trashing in the throes of ecstasy. The way how her voice would sound when I pushed her against the wall. The way how she would run her long fingers across my body.

She got off a stop early, so my chance with her was flushed away.

But I could tell there was something there, it was in the way how she looked back at me, once she left the train.

Perhaps I would see her again, at a similar time, on the same train in the future.

As I entered the lobby for my workplace, one of my colleague came up to me, excited.

Alfie! How have you been man? Keen for tonight?

Johnno, of course I am, my man. I’ll see you in the lobby at 6pm yeah?

You got it bro! Bring you A-Game!

As John dashed off to his desk, I settle into mine. It was going to be a long 8 hours. The work I did for the entire day was mediocre and lacklustre. It was all passable, but nothing to earn me the promotion I had been eyeing. I am unable to resist sneaking peeks at Euro porn throughout the entire shift. It helps that I have my own office with blinds.

To put it simply, I am unable to concentrate properly. Sex is all I have on my mind. I want that euphoria of an orgasm again.

Throughout my entire shift, I fight the urge to reach down and touch myself. Halfway through my lunch break, I think about making a break for the toilet.

The thought evolved into action.

I actually end up in the stall, jerking off. But again, I am unable to climax. Something is amiss today and I don’t know what it is.

Maybe I really do need a woman to get me off. But that’s normal right? There is no shame in that. I just have to score with John tonight and I know I’ll be happy again, and able to get some semblance of normalcy again. I can feel good again with my cock in hand and the sounds of a woman moaning.

The hours count down, until finally it hits 6pm. I look down at my suit pants and relieved that my penis is behaving somewhat normally. It isn’t erect. It’s just slightly engorged, not enough to really see anything. I promise it, that it will have its fill by the end of the tonight.

I meet John in the lobby and we head out to his favourite drinking spot. A watering hole that is more known for its hook-ups than its cocktails.

There, we hit it off with a pair of office-workers like us, two girls out for a spontaneous night of fun. Alice and Sharon. Alice is sweet and a lovely brunette. Without even checking with me, John selects her as his goal for the night. To my surprise, Sharon is the strawberry blonde I saw on the train earlier that day. We both pretend not to recognise each other, and I buy her a drink nevertheless.

As she speaks, all I can hear inside my mind are her potential moans. When she reaches out to touch me, when I make a joke, all I want is her to caress me tightly. Every toss of her hair and flirtatious gesture is amplified to the highest sexual degree in my head.

My pants are no longer able to hide my attraction. Not that Sharon cares, she brazenly touches me twice down there with a mischievousness that belied her casual nature.

As we get drunker and drunker, we eventually call it quits and wave goodbye to Alice and John, who don’t bother to acknowledge us, their eyes only staring at each other.

Somehow, in spite of our drunkenness, Sharon and I end up in a taxi together and she call out her address. The taxi ride itself is the most forgotten part of the night. Only the sense of movement is registered in my mind. I have waited all day for this.

By this time, my head is on her chest, my hands are full of her hips and my mouth is tasting the softness of her skin.

As we stumble together into her small apartment, we start to peel the clothes away. Everything is a haze of sensual alcoholic gratification. My mouth devours her lips, her breasts, her navel and her bush. She is squirming above me in titillation, unable to stop her body from reacting the way I want it to.

In an effort, she spins me around and wrap her mouth around my penis, as I tongue away at her. Soon the foreplay had built up to such an extent that I can feel pre-cum building on the tip of my penis and her vagina getting more and more wet by the second.

I push her head away and without pausing, hilt her. She screams and I ignore them for passionate cries.

But moments later, the fists start coming and flying at me fast. I am shoved off her and deprived of my wanton desires and I snap out of my feverish state to see Alice before me, her hands clutching her lower stomach in pain, tears streaming down, her brunette hair splayed across her face, hiding her pained expression.

I do a double take in shock and horror. Had I unwittingly committed rape? Where was Sharon? Why was Alice here? How did I get the two mixed up so badly? Where was John?

What have I done?

screams my mind above all the other thoughts.

I pick up my clothes and in my rush, hurt my still throbbing penis, it almost getting caught in the zipper of my pants. I stumble out of the apartment, still reeling from what just happened. My shirt is untucked, my blazer is skewed and my shoes aren’t slipped on properly.

What the hell just happened?!?!

I had only taken several steps, down a foreign block, when the weather changed drastically and the first pellets of rain slammed into my head.

I look up and hear the crack of lightning and thunder as it echoes throughout the sky.

Rain lashed at me, the chill killing any lingering thoughts of sex I had been so obsessed over for the whole day and I could only run to find shelter, as water slowly pooled in my shoes.

As the wind and water cut away at me like vengeance from a woman scorned, I struggle to bring out my phone and call for a taxi home. The feat was so difficult, I spent nearly 5 minutes thumbing for the number, my mind still wracked with guilt, shame and confusion.

When it finally arrives, I am soaked through. I am so wet, the driver even goes out of his way to spread a towel over the seats to prevent me from soaking the car further.

By the time I crawl into my apartment, I faced with a similar dilemma only earlier today. Only 4 hours of sleep until I need to get ready for work.

Only this time, no amount of porn, sex and titillation will get me to sleep.

I keep flashing back to seeing Alice. Where was Sharon …. had I made her up?

I glare at my computer and in a fit of rage, delete everything off it. Every single gigabyte of pornography, after years of collecting …. gone in a green bar that indicates deletion.

I feel like trashing my room, but refrain from doing so.

As I lie on my bed, soaking wet, naked and afraid … I come to a horrifying conclusion.

Everything that had happened today … all the misery, all the lack of pleasure, all the shame and delusions …. hallucinations … occurred because I was addicted.

I am an sex addict.

The thought flashed in my mind, as bright as neon, and I knew from then on, I knew I would never be the same person again.

I would never touch a woman the same way again.

I would never experience a woman’s moans without fear.

I would never approach sex again without anxiety.

I looked down at myself and saw for once, something flaccid and sad.

The true price of addiction.

Humiliation.

Author’s Note

Beyond breaking the normal taboo of writing and creating sexual content, I actually breached one of my personal rules, when it comes to fictional writing: I made the story entirely in first person.

There are several reasons for this, the most important, was that I wanted this Alfie character to be as immersive and haunting as possible. He is not meant to be a character to be liked … but pitied. He is a victim of his own doing, and I really wanted to tap into what life might be like for a sex addict. The only way to make this story as shocking and confronting as possible was to go beyond my comfort zone and really pretend I was an sexual addict. That meant writing in first person.

For the story itself, I purposefully skipped large chunks of his day and focused on the sexual aspects, because that is what an addict’s mindset is like …. always seeking the next fix, always chasing a high. The world and time becomes irrelevant in comparison to the chase. It was bizarre at first, and I thought it didn’t flow, but when I read it again, it made sense.

I will also make a humbling confession that some of Alfie’s traits and taste come from my own experience in pornography and that is part of the reason why I wanted to write something as weighty as this. I knew deep down, this story would have to involve my own experiences, my own taste and conclusions and I’ll admit, it wasn’t easy to write it and see it laid bare for all to see.

When I was younger, I was a porn addict. After all, it is such an easy trap to fall into. You make yourself feel good, with stimulus. A simple spell that has doubtless bewitched many young teenage men. Fortunately, my habit was only ever confined to once a day and it never affected my relationships, work or lifestyle. It was just a habit I fell into when browsing the internet late at night.

But the main reason why I felt so compelled to write this, is because it is such a taboo and sensitive topic. I’ve always loved issues that forced you to confront an ugly truth about yourself. Sexual addiction is one that has always held a long-term fascination for me, primarily due to my interest in sex work, prostitution and the psychology behind sexual desire.

I thought Shame (2011) was a brilliant dissection into the mental state behind a person’s sexual addiction and for the longest time I wanted to write a compelling story about something similar. I daresay, this story was one of the fastest I have ever written, with 2.7K words flying across my screen in a mere 2 hours. I would like to thank Abel Korzeniowski’s work on Nocturnal Animals (2016) to really allow me to tap into something disturbing and the romantic song heard in Lucifer’s Season 5 Episode 6: Galleaux – Tether Me for helping me get over the line and reaching a satisfactory conclusion.

My story mostly parallels the journey of Brandon from Shame except I added the hallucinogenic twist at the end to show how his mental state had deteriorated and succumbed so much to his addiction that he wasn’t aware of the woman he had bought home.

I would also like to acknowledge the sex scenes that I wrote. I hope they were written in such a way that it came across as very unsexy. I myself felt no particular thrill in writing them, as the way how Alfie described women and collapsed his self-worth so heavily into his addiction was more disturbing than thrilling. I actually (surprise, surprise) do not have a lot of experience writing sex scenes, preferring to favour violence as my main means of spilling fluid everywhere.

So believe me, when I say, I would pause slightly before I typed the words “penis” or “vagina” … which goes to show what a silly shrinking violet I am when it comes to writing sex. Perhaps in the future, I shall practice writing some form of erotica, just to make sure I am actually capable of turning someone on with words out there and that my mind can display a healthy appreciation of romance.

For those cinephiles out there, I did name the protagonist, Alfie after the titular movie Alfie (1966) staring Michael Caine.

Any addiction is bad. Don’t waste your time on pornography when you can go out there and develop real relationships with a partner as cliched as that sounds.

But coming to the realisation that you have a problem is always the first step to take. Knowing you have an addiction of any kind is giving you wrestling your life, self-respect and agenda back.

That is the first step towards recovering.

Anyway I hope you, my dear reader, did not mind this short story.

Expect me only to dive deeper into more confronting topics in the future!

~ Damocles

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