“And some don’t.” I don’t think I’d ever seen Cassie look more flustered; we’d been sitting here for an hour, talking over everything that had happened with Brian, and still she was caught halfway between tears and temper, and the more I tried to reason with her, the more frustrated she became.
For the I-don-t-know-how-many times, I tried to reassure her. “He’s a guy. They like making lists. That’s why they’re so boring about baseball, they don’t talk about the game, they talk about the statistics. And that’s all this is.”
She looked at me as though I was simple or something, clenched her teeth and hissed through tight lips,
“Come. That’s not statistics, that’s a sickness.”
I couldn’t resist a smile. “What the swallowing? Or the list?”
“Either. Both. Yes, I’m sure some girls have done it with him, but I’m not one of them and I don’t really care for him comparing me with them.” She unfolded the offending piece of paper again, and stared at it. Reading it upside down, I silently smirked at how methodical it was. Twenty-one names, three columns. It’s amazing what you can do with a computer spreadsheet – and amazing how stupid a guy must be, to leave such a thing on the family machine, where anyone could… and did… stumble across it.
Kay. She Fucked, but neither Sucked nor Swallowed. Wendy did all three, Stephanie and Les did the first two, Heather went the whole hog once, Michelle was intercourse alone. And so on up to the present day, with 20 Fuckers, 17 Suckers, 1 who Sucked but didn’t Fuck – and just five who gulped it down enough to have their names highlighted in red. Cassie wasn’t one of them.
“And what is it with the highlighting?” Cassie obviously read my mind. “Is he going to be off hunting them down on Myspace next, to ask if they want to rekindle old glories?”
“I doubt that very much. How old is he now, 40-something? He’s probably just feeling old and going back over his memories… some people get out the photo album, some people take out old love letters. Brian takes out old sex partners. But it doesn’t mean any more or less.”
“Well, it does to me.” The temper was flaring again. “And I don’t know how I’m going to do it, but I am going to pay him back for this. Somehow. Someday.”
“If you ask me, the best way you can get him back is to forget you ever saw it, then make sure that the next time he’s on the computer, he’s highlighting your name as well. It’ll take you ten minutes, but if this is anything to go by, he’ll still be thinking about it for the next 20-odd years.”
She looked at me curiously. “And how, exactly, does that pay him back?”
“It doesn’t. But it might remind him that his sex life hasn’t already peaked, and that the future can hold as many surprises as the past. Besides, if you really haven’t ever tried it…” (she pulled a face) … “you ought to just once. You never know, it might give you something else to look forward to, as well.”