http://pittsburghflashfictiongazette.net/fiction-missed-connection-lori-schafer/ (Adult Content)
A couple of months ago, I wrote a post about my short-short “Delayed Connection," which was then the home-page story on Romance Flash. In it I describe how the original idea for that very sweet, very romantic story came to me from this one, “Missed Connection,” which is a much more sexual and also strangely sadder piece.
The original premise was actually not, as you might think, the chance meeting at the airport. Rather it was about the confession with which the story begins. Because I think we can all relate to that, to the regrets we have over the “one that got away,” over never making a move when we had the chance. How afraid we were to share our feelings, for fear of being rejected, yet how simultaneously eager we were to admit them, on the unlikely chance that our emotional and/or physical affection would be returned. The narrator here has taken the bold and incredibly foolish step of actually making the confession – in writing, no less – not in the middle of the acquaintance, but after it’s too late for anything to happen between her and her object of desire.
What could possibly motivate a character to do something like that? There’s nothing in it for her, obviously, nothing to be gained but an increase in her pain and humiliation, so why would she do it? The answer is simply that she wanted him to know. At the very last, she wanted him to know how attractive he was to her, and what kind of fantasies he inspired, even if it meant exposing her deepest secrets to someone who had already left her behind. It’s a remarkably unselfish act. Stupid, surely, but unselfish.
I’d like to say that she's rewarded for making this unusual parting gift, and perhaps, in a way, she is. In the end, she still doesn’t get what she wanted. But maybe she feels a little better about not getting it. And if you find yourself grieving over a lost love, you would be a fool to hope for more than that.
"Missed Connection" is one of the stories to be featured in my forthcoming collection To All the Penises I've Ever Known: Romantic and Erotic Shorts by Lori Schafer. For more information, please visit the book's webpage or subscribe to my newsletter.