Wayne spent most of his adult life as a property lawyer. Though he was successful in his work, his personal life suffered as he went through two marriages, and one child custody battle. Thankfully, he was now into early retirement with no nagging wife but wasn’t sure what to do with his time. The club scene had no appeal for him, and he wasn’t a big drinker, so the bar was boring.
One day, Wayne came across Second Life, a virtual world, in an online game group. With nothing to lose, he decided to give it a try. During his first day in SL, he roamed aimlessly but eventually discovered the search feature and managed to find people. He even got himself “adult verified” to watch the pole-dancing ladies who were friendly at first but quickly lost interest after he tipped them 10 lindens. Wayne made a mental note to buy more lindens.
One day for a laugh Wayne got the idea to make a new avatar. This was Second Life, a world of indulging fantasy. Wayne did not like when people were narrow-minded so, in the tradition of Weird Science, he registered a new SL account and created a woman on his computer.
Actually, Wayne created the hottest female his brain could think up. She was tall and curvy, had long legs, a large chest, and a deep tan. This was the perfect blonde woman. His lindens were limited but he found free skin and hair that looked good to him, and he would upgrade her as soon as he could.
Now she needed a name. He was going to call her something slutty but after so much effort into her appearance, he decided that “she” deserved better. Names of every woman he ever knew flitted through his head, but in the end he settled for one he heard in a spy film years ago. It had an exotic ring to it. Nadia. Yes, Nadia was perfect.
Wayne tried to see as much as he could exploring SL as Nadia and was almost speechless when people spoke to him more and struck up friendly conversations. Not just men, but women. Oh yes, women! They flirted with Nadia, whereas his male avatar was ignored. He smiled at this.
It was during his first week of creating Nadia that Wayne met Laura. He was going to give Nadia a high-class makeover and stood in a women’s clothing shop, looking at everything. As a man, jeans and a T-shirt were ok, but as a woman — what decisions! Some of the clothes brought to mind movie stars, and his heart rate increased at the thought of the plunging necklines. Nadia had beautiful cleavage. She deserved a beautiful dress to show these off.
“Need help, Nadia?” Laura entered the chat range. She was shorter than Nadia and had dark auburn hair and a light green ball gown on. Something stirred in Wayne the moment he saw her. Why yes! Wayne did need help, so they got to talking, friended one another, and for the next few weeks, they met up every day.
During one of their conversations, Laura revealed that she was bisexual, and Wayne’s heart pounded as she admitted to being interested in more than a shopping buddy. At first, Wayne questioned his sanity. Laura was a woman, which was fine. He was a straight man who liked women. But he was not communicating with Laura as Wayne. He was using Nadia to do it, and their time alone had become intense, and mind-blowing.
After a few weeks, Wayne couldn’t help but think of Laura even when he wasn’t logged into Second Life. She would come to mind while he was getting groceries, paying bills, or taking his car to the shop. Although a lot of it was sexy fantasy, he also imagined Laura cooking dinner or cuddling with him by the fire.
But then it dawned on him that Laura did not deserve to be lied to. While Second Life was a pixel world, Wayne realized that the feelings he had for Laura were real. He had been honest about everything except for the fact that he was actually a man in real life. However, if Laura genuinely cared about him as much as he did about her, was it possible that she’d accept him as Wayne? She said she was bisexual, so maybe she would accept him regardless. It might even improve their relationship.
“I love you,” Wayne blurted out, hugging Laura close with Nadia’s arms. “We should talk on voice.”
Laura, though shy with some things, and not one to rush into anything involving “real life” surprisingly agreed. She cuddled close on their menu-controlled sofa, but she didn’t want to use Second Life’s voice feature to talk to him. Instead, she gave him her mobile phone number. “Call me now.”
Wayne was shaking as he dialed her number. The phone rang six times, and when Laura picked up, he thought he should get it over with as soon as he could and rushed right in to speak before she could say anything.
“Laura. This is Wayne, er, Nadia. I didn’t mean to lie, it just happened.” He paused. “I care about you, but I’m a man. Can you accept me as a man? I’m sorry for not telling you.”
Wayne held his breath, and it was as if the birds stopped chirping, the wind stopped blowing, and all traffic came to a halt. “Laura?” Wayne said. “Are you there?”
What came next Wayne never expected. A deep, male voice spoke from the other end of the phone: “I know exactly how you feel,” Laura replied.