Rave Michaels is a wanna-be-writer who meets a beautiful older woman named So Price on Facebook. At first Rave is too caught up with plans with her girlfriend Tiffany, a woman on house arrest, to give too much thought to her messages with So, but the two soon become good friends, talking about their writing projects together, along with a variety of other topics.
After Rave has an unexpected break-up with Tiffany, So is the one who is there for her. In spite of their distance -- Rave lives in Indiana and So lives in Pennsylvania -- Rave and So decide to become a couple. So travels from Pennsylvania to Indiana frequently and they spend time together in hotels, getting to know each other and having passionate sex. But will Rave's problems with bipolar disorder prove to be too much to handle? Will the coronavirus keep them apart? Can a lasting relationship truly be found online?
Sounds like So is a pretty special person, my friend Lilly messaged me the next day. Why don’t you try dating her?
I was smoking at work, and reading those words made me stop with my thumbs in mid-air for a second and laugh.
I can’t date her, I explained. For one thing, she lives in Pennsylvania. Indiana isn’t that far away, but I think it’s too far to be in a relationship with someone. And I think she thinks I’m too young because she’s ten years older than me. Not that Tiffany wasn’t about to turn forty-nine. So is special, but she’s my friend. I wouldn’t want to fuck that up.
I did have other friends besides So, a few select Facebook friends that I had known in real life at some point, but never saw in person anymore. We just messaged once in a while, and I confided in them about Luke or anything else that was going on, but it really wasn’t that deep. I was still unsatisfied. But So was filling a gap that had been empty for a long time.
She wasn’t just my friend, she was becoming my best friend. I could tell her anything, and she just rolled with it and always knew what to say. And anytime she wanted to tell me anything, I was available to listen, but sometimes I felt I was inferior in my abilities to help her.
You held me down, she liked to say. I want to be there for you whenever you need it.
I decided to tell her the real reason three of my books weren’t published anymore.
Five years ago I had a manic episode, I texted her. I started hearing voices, but at the time I didn’t realize it wasn’t real. I thought I could literally read minds. I thought everyone could, and I was just learning how to do it for the first time. I’d sit at work having full conversations with people in my head. I used to work full time. Used to have a house. A car. My son. And my books. But then I started being delusional. I thought the police were after me, and the only way I could avoid prison time was by pulling my books off the market. I broke my contracts with my publisher without giving any explanation. I was hospitalized for months. Things haven’t been the same for me ever since.
You’ll get a new publisher someday. Don’t give up.
I said I couldn’t date So, but I still thought she was fucking beautiful. And here we were both single. And here I was hypersexual.
So, I told her on Christmas Eve as I lay in bed. I wonder what would happen if we hung out together one night?
I think we’d have fun, she said. I’d take you out for drinks and show you around Pittsburgh. We could go dancing.
I smiled. I can’t dance. But I’d like to see you dance.
We could get a hotel afterwards, she suggested next.
I’d hold you in my arms and kiss you, I typed, sending the message before I could change my mind; bracing myself.
Baby, she replied.
Adrenaline surged through my body just to read that word coming from her. It was almost violent. I was immediately turned on, not that I wasn’t always two seconds away from that state on any given day.