Sugar / by Alan Semrow


            When I asked, she said her name is Sugar and that it costs extra to touch any part of her body. A lot of extra—like, don’t do it, she said. It’s forbidden. Security will have me out in one shake of a lamb’s tail. I told her I’m a nice guy, that I really do just want to hang out.

            I’m in one of their private rooms. It’s got mirrored walls, a mirrored ceiling, really uncomfortable pleather seating, and the eye in the sky. The sign outside is fluorescent pink. The front window is just a huge fish tank filled with little Nemo’s. Sugar dances on top the center table, starts removing her lacey blouse. She says, “So what are you into?”

            “Bret Easten Ellis and Fiona Apple.”

            Sugar bends over and lets me have a glance at the thong she’s wearing under her itty bitty skirt. She puffs out, “Who?”

            “Never mind,” I say, paying just a hair of attention as she dips low and comes back up, dips low and comes back up.

            Sugar dances around in her ultra-high silver heels—a little half-circle. She faces me. “What kind of kinky things do you do?”

            “Just the usual,” I reply.

            “To women my age?”

            “Not usually.”

            Sugar laughs. “You know I’m old enough to be your mother, right?” The slinky music booms behind me, behind Sugar.

            “That’s a theory. I’m not that young. You’d be glad to know.”

            Sugar’s pink, lacey blouse falls from her arms. She steps off the table so her breasts are in my face. I stay seated, looking into her eyes. “Look at you,” she says.

            I look to the wall of mirror across the tiny room. I am sexy. I am strong. I am a man. I nod up at her. I tell her, “I really can’t touch you?”

            “I’m old enough to be your mother.”

            “I’ll pay extra. I want to fuck.”

            Sugar turns away and dances back up to the top of table. She bends low, popping her knees out, begging me to stare directly at her cunt. I don’t.

            Sugar mutters, “I don’t fuck my clients.”

            “Your clients?” I ask. “Don’t you have a boss?”

            She bends forward, graces her delicate hand through my thin bangs. Sugar whispers, “One day, honey. You’ll learn about what it means to be the boss.”

            Sugar flips away from me—her blonde wig, looking almost is if it’s floating through the air in slow motion. I tell her, “I want to be the boss. I want to be the boss of you.”

            “When’s the last time you had sex?” Sugar asks, back still turned at me.

            “I can’t say.”

            “It was a long time ago, wasn’t it?”

            “Not really.”

            “See,” she says. “I do plenty of things for money, but if you’re looking for that, you probably came to the wrong place. None of the girls here are allowed to fuck. It’s protocol.”

            “You have some kind of a guidebook or something?”

             Sugar turns. “You’d be amazed, wouldn’t you?” She points a finger at my nose and touches it. “You’re clever, hey? You some kind of a writer.”

              “Oh,” I laugh. “If only. If only, Sugar.”

              Her back faces me. She removes her top, her bra. She’s got smooth skin—smooth like what those soy milk commercials make their product out to be. “I’m too old for you anyway.”

              “Nah.” The slinky music booms—heavy, sexy bass.

              “Tell me what you want me to do.”

               “Turn around, bitch.”

               Sugar spins around. I look at her breasts. I look down. I say, “Lift your right leg up as far as it can go.” She does as told. Her expression, it says virtually nothing—just that she’s still in charge, that she reads me. That she has already made up her mind.

               “What else?”

               “Let me touch your breast.”

               “No can do.” Sugar looks me in the eyes and grins.

               “What would happen?”

               “Security would see you.” Sugar points one of her glazed, manicured nails to the ceiling. I look up. I already know it’s there—the eye in the sky. “They’d kick your ass out of here before you could even blink.”

             “Don’t men treat you terribly, Sugar? Is this really a fulfilling life?”

             “You want me to take my skirt off?” she asks. “You know I’d be happy to do that right this very moment for you, mister. Show you my thong.”


             Sugar shakes her head, rolls her eyes. “Whatever.”

             I remove a hundred dollar bill from my pant pocket and lay it lightly on the table she dances on. Sugar bends over to take the money. She says, “Thank you.”

             “You have a boyfriend?”

             “I have a kid. That’s what I have right now.”

             “You have small feet, you know. I could be your daddy-yo, you know.”

             Mom left too early. She didn’t even give Dad a chance. I don’t know—I still don’t even remember much, the things we did together.

             I do know, though, she smelled like basil. She always smelled like basil. I don’t know what it is. It’s just I can’t really eat Italian food.



Alan Semrow’s work has been featured in over 30 publications. He has a degree in English from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. Apart from writing fiction, he is a singer-songwriter, artist, poet, music and literature geek, playwright, screenwriter, and professional copywriter. He is also a volunteer reader for Black Heart Magazine and is a Guest Fiction Editor for the Summer Issue of Five Quarterly. Semrow has compiled his best fiction into a collection of short stories, called You Kill Me (currently unpublished). In his free time, he likes to be with his boyfriend, friends, family, and Shih Tzu, Remy. His blog can be found at