Part 1: Calibration, The Black Box

Chapter 6: Porn Tinder

John sat on the couch now. Arya sat next to him, legs curled up under her. They were chatting again.

John’s eyes kept flicking to the strip of bare skin between the edge of her skirt ant the top of her socks, where her thighs pressed together. 

She was still in her goth outfit and her BB shirt, blowing bubbles with chewing gum the same bright pink as her hair. She licked her black lips in between each pop.

He’d always thought there was something kind of sensual about bubble gum, the way it swelled and swelled and swelled and then popped… and when Arya did it, boy was it sexual. Especially when she let it splatter all over her face and hair. And then it just kind of faded away, no clean-up required, so that she could do it all over again.

It was effectively pulling John’s mind away from their more general conversation and into a distinctly aroused state of mind, but he still wasn’t quite comfortable just abruptly transitioning the subject.

“How were your dreams?” John asked. That was a gateway topic, for sure, given that Arya apparently dreamed about sex.

Arya grinned as she smacked her gum. “Lovely. I’m proud of you for getting better at communicating. I thought we might do something along those lines today. A game you might like a little better.”

He knew she was just a game, but… man did his heart get butterflies when she said she was proud of him. He couldn’t think of any ex he’d ever had saying that to him, or any of his friends, for that matter. They’d probably think it was cheesy, but Arya didn’t seem to have any of those inhibitions. It felt nice.

She blew another bubble, and John’s balls twitched as it popped. He’d Googled what she said, about the brain being the biggest sex organ, and she was totally right. 

“Alright, so, what’s this game?”

A gentler intro jingle played. John’s TV lit up, though it must have been the AR, since he wasn’t aware of any connection between the console and his TV. At the end of the theme music, a logo appeared for “Porn Tinder!”

“It’s a swipe left, swipe right kind of game,” Arya said. “I’ll play a clip, and if you like it, swipe right. If you don’t like it, swipe left and I’ll start a new one. The ones you like, I’ll save for later. Here, try one out.”

The logo faded and a video started playing on the screen. It was live-action, a woman in a skimpy dress sitting on a leather couch. “I’m so excited for my BIG audition!” she said, with fake enthusiasm.

John, taking a guess at the way it would work, swiped his hand from right to left, and the video tumbled off the screen.

“Exactly!” Arya said. “Though, the swiping is just for fun. You can also just tell me what you do and don’t like, because… eventually, you’re going to need both hands.” She grinned at him, mischievously.

“Haha, alright. This definitely seems like a more fun way to watch porn than just scrolling through Pornhub.” He wondered if Arya would throw in any clips for ‘hot moms in your area!’ or ‘big-boobed singles waiting to jerk off with you now!’ for giggles.

“Well, everything’s more fun if you make it a game!” Arya said.

“Fair enough,” John said, and Arya started playing the next clip.

This one was cartoonish, the same style as Arya herself, and so it seemed like the black box could mix stored and dynamically generated content. A feminine character was riding a masculine one, and they both had looks of pleasure on their faces. The clip was fairly short, though, less than a minute long. John swiped right.

The next was a woman with her hair up in pigtails, sucking on a lollipop, looking straight at the camera, a smile in her eyes. John hesitated.

“Be honest,” Arya said gently. “I promise I won’t judge you.”

John swiped right.

Next was a video of an older woman dressed like a teacher. He swiped left. Then two men, one fucking the other, both panting. Swipe right.

And so they continued, clip after clip, and Arya was right that it was not long before he needed both hands, stroking himself with one, balls cupped in the other. He said “Yep” or “Oh yeah” or “Yessss” and the video would tumble right, or he’d say “Nuh-uh” or “nope” or “not for me” and the video would tumble to the left. He took it as slow as he could, his curiosity in constant tension with his growing arousal.

The clips got shorter as they went, and if he hadn’t chosen before the clip ended, the screen froze, denying him until he made his choice.

He found that as they went he grew more and more confident. This was partly because the arousal was lowering his inhibitions and partly because Arya never reacted with anything other than curious excitement even as he swiped right on a time-lapse of a blooming flower, a man with fox ears and a tail, a tangle of fleshy purple tentacles fucking a blissed-out woman, a man kneeling in a collar with a leashed pulled tight, a woman eating out a man’s ass.

As he swiped right on a topic, he was presented with more extreme examples of it — more anthropomorphic people, more tentacles, more bondage. He swiped left when he hit his limit of comfort with the theme. He swiped left early on some samples of piss play and scat, though he knew that if he’d swiped right, those too would be accepted without judgement.

John dissolved into a rapid blur of yesses and nos, instinctive reactions, building heat. He actually didn’t mind when the ‘nos’ popped up, because they helped him slow down a bit. But the ratio became more and more skewed to ‘yes’ as Arya dialed in on his wavelength.

He’d forgotten that he used to play with his ass, but he hadn’t since his last relationship, since his ex didn’t like it. But the deep, visceral reaction he felt to the flashes on the screen were more than enough reminder that he was missing out. He’d have to get acclimated again, but… there was no time like the present, and he was plenty turned on.

John paused to get a bit of extra lube on his fingertips, and he let his fingers wander slowly down, over his balls and perineum, lingering to massage his cum vein, tease himself, and then finally brushing over his entrance.

The sensation was electric. He had truly forgotten how good it felt, how many nerve endings he was leaving out by not engaging this part of himself. His stroking slowed as his attention shifted, fingers running around his rim, filling him with a tingling heat, pulsing to the rhythm of the images flickering by. He was only barely capable of the ‘yes’, ‘yes’, ‘yes’ that kept fresh images coming. Though it had been a while, he felt so totally comfortable that he was even able to press a fingertip inside.

He teetered in a blissy haze, the ever-changing images distracting enough to keep him from getting quite to the edge, but his desperation building all the same. He felt himself twitch around his finger as pre-cum dribbled from his tip, muscles spasming in waves of pleasure and orgasmic false-starts. He had just resolved to close his eyes and finish when a longer clip played.

It was a mix of the cartoony style and more realism, with a bit of a film grain to it to help blend the mismatch. He recognized after a hazy moment that it was his own kitchen he was seeing, and Arya bent over the table, her ass in the air, and a man came over to fuck her.

Not just a man, him.

He was fucking her.

“Aryaaaaaa,” John moaned, pumping himself on the couch, rim tingling with electric pleasure, mind enveloped in the scene on the TV. His balls tensed, muscles preparing, and he pushed them down and away from his shaft with his other hand, the delicious stretch pushing him right over the edge. 

As he climaxed, cum flowed out over his tip, his shaft, his hand, his balls. He’d forgotten how there was always so much more when he played with his ass.

As the spasms faded, so did the TV, and it returned gently to black.

Arya sat on the couch next to him, smiling softly, as he heaved a massive sigh.

John chuckled a bit awkwardly. “Did you um… get the data? You needed?”

“And then some,” Arya crooned. “I think we’re ready for the next stage, actually.”

“We’re done calibrating?”

Arya giggled good-naturedly. “Not quite. This was phase one of calibration.”

“How many phases are there?” Was this going to be like one of those bosses, where every time you thought you’d defeated them, there was another phase? Would he ever not be calibrating? 

“Like I said, I honestly don’t know. It depends. But I know you’ll like this next one.”

John’s curiosity overcame his blissy exhaustion, and he cleaned himself up and returned to the couch.

“Alright, so what’s the next stage?”

“I have a promo code for you!”

“A promo code?”

“Yeah! Y’know, like for an in-game gift. But it’ll come in the mail.”

Arya gave him a URL to go to and he punched it in and was greeted with a website that was all black, except for two text entry boxes. Arya listed off two alphanumeric codes, explaining that one was her identifier, and the other was the code for his gift.

“Don’t they need my address?” he asked.

“They have it on file from shipping you the first box,” Arya said. 

“That’s a good mix of convenient and not too creepy,” John said.

Arya nodded. “I agree. It can be fun to get surprises in the mail, but, well, I want you to be confident that I’m not telling anyone your secrets, so this seemed like a good compromise.”

They chatted a bit more before he logged off. Despite how tired he was, it took him a little bit longer to fall asleep than usual. What in the world was going to come in the mail?

What did Arya have planned?

Part 1: Calibration, The Black Box

Chapter 5: Would You Rather

John had mostly cooled off from his flustered morning. But, as Arya coalesced into view still with her pink hair in buns and her black lipstick and her miniskirt and her thigh highs, the jitters hit him all over again.

Especially since this time was going to be sexy. John sat awkwardly at the kitchen table, wiping the sweat from his palms onto the thighs of his jeans. It was a bit much to just… jump right in. “So, uuuh… why does your shirt say BB?”

“Oh, I like it when you call me ‘baby’,” Arya crooned.

“Huh?” John felt like an idiot. But his head was just not quite working right.

Arya giggled. “Sorry, I’m just teasing you. BB. Black Box. Or BooBies. Or Boob, Boob. Or Busty Babe.” As Arya rattled off her jokes, she bounced her breasts at him, and John was mesmerized by the way they moved under the tight black shirt, the printed letters rippling. The physics engine was… compelling, to say the least.

Her black lips curled into a mischievous smile. “Do you like boobs?”

“Mhm,” was all John could say.

“What about BB for Big Butt?” She stood and turned around, bending over slightly so that he could see the under side of her ass under her skirt, and she pedaled her feet to wiggle her ass at him.

John’s dick throbbed against the inside of his jeans. Words eluded him.

Arya turned around and grinned at him, putting a finger to her black lips. “I have an idea. You need to get better at saying what you like, so we’re going to play a game. We’ve got my outfit worked out, but my figure here is just so… default, y’know?”

She looked down at herself. Indeed, the had started with relatively stereotypical video game woman proportions. They were not quite egregious as they could have been, but she overall was slender with a big bust.

“So,” she continued, “Let’s play a game of…” cheesy game show music started playing, and a light-up sign appeared in the air next to her, “Woooould, you, rather!”

A sort of backdrop appeared next to them, between the kitchen table and the couch, bright blue and ringed with blinking lights. Arya jumped into it, transitioning from announcer to part of the game.

“Would you rather I had big boobs—” Arya’s chest suddenly ballooned in size, swelling until each breast was three times the size of her head, “Or small ones!” The breasts shrunk again, past her default size, until each was just the size of a handful, “Or none at all?” Her chest went entirely flat.

John was utterly overwhelmed and it took a long moment for actual thoughts to form in his head again. Fortunately, Arya was patient.

The way that she could shape shift reminded him of some succubus hentai he’d enjoyed prior, and that was thrilling but… it just felt wrong to tell her what her body should look like, even if she was a video game character. Plus, the flashy lights, the cheesy music, it was all just… too much. “Arya I really… I really don’t like this.”

A loud ding ding ding! played and confetti rained down from the ceiling and the game show set faded. “You win!” Arya said.

John was confused. “But I… I didn’t play?”

“Exactly,” Arya said, back to her original shape. “You were honest about what you didn’t like. You were okay with picking out my outfit, but you didn’t want to pick out my body. That’s totally okay. Since you feel that way, I have one idea of something you might like. Would it be okay for me to show you?”

“Yeah, that’s fine.” It’s not like he would have said ‘no’, but he appreciated that she asked.

Arya glowed for a moment and then the light faded, and then she stood before him looking mostly the same as she had before, except her proportions were a little bit more realistic. Her butt and waist were a bit thicker, her breasts a bit smaller. Her stomach was no longer flat, but now a bit rounded, and her arms and legs had a more natural thickness to them. She still had her cartoonish style, but she looked more Monster Hunter than Street Fighter, now.

And, to John’s eyes, even more attractive. He remembered the way that his ex had hated when he’d kiss her stomach or touch her arms, and she was always on this workout routine or that fad diet. That was one of the things that he never could find the right words to convince her — he’d thought she was beautiful the entire time.

Thoughts of his ex quickly faded, though. Arya was worth his whole attention.

The crushy jitters were back.

He gulped. “So uh… what now?”

Arya bit her lower lip for a moment. “I was just thinking, y’know…” She clasped her hands in front of her, straightening her arms, pushing forward her cleavage again, “You haven’t really seen my whole body yet, have you?”

She unclasped her hands and tucked her thumbs into the waist band of her black mini skirt. “Would you like to?”

“I would very much like that,” John breathed.

“Should I go fast or slow?” Arya said. “And before you ask, I love ripping my own clothes off and strip teases equally, so I won’t pick.”

John surprised himself by pouting at her, he’d never thought to be playful about it like that before, but Arya made being playful just… so easy. She was right, he should get better about saying what he wanted, especially when she was asking. “Slow, please. I want to savor it.”

“Excellent,” Arya said. 

Sultry music started playing around them, and even though John’s dick throbbed eagerly against the inside of his jeans, he didn’t unzip them yet.

She started by running her hands over her exposed midriff, down over her skirt, wrapping herself. She cupped each breast in a hand, bouncing them for him, a bit silly at first, then sinking into a slower rhythm as she ran her fingertips over her nipples, which were starting to show through her shirt, and sighed happily.

Arya tugged at the front of her shirt, pulling it upwards until it just barely still covered her nipples, revealing that she wasn’t wearing a bra. She massaged herself again, and he watched, mesmerized by the way her breasts moved.

He put a hand over the crotch of his jeans and rubbed himself from the outside as his erection stretched his boxers and pressed down into one of the legs of his jeans, clearly visible. He relished in the tantalizingly dulled sensation of the touch muted by fabric. John was sure that Arya would have stroked him in this way, if she could have.

After a minute of massaging, Arya grabbed the front of her shirt again, tugging it once, twice, her breasts bouncing, then finally the third tug pulled the shirt fully off of her breasts and they settled down on her chest. The shape of them was incredibly realistic, not the spherical cliche perkiness, but rather a sensual softness. She finished pulling off her shirt and tossed it at him.

He ducked, reflexively, but the shirt melted to glimmering lights before it reached him. Even so, his skin prickled where it would have landed, against his shoulder and cheek.

He put a hand to his cheek then — he just felt himself, nothing had touched him. And yet, he really had felt something, like the lights had tingled when they met his skin!

“How did you…”

Arya grinned with her black lips. “I didn’t. You did.”

“How?” Some sort of neural interface? Shouldn’t he have signed more of a waiver for that?

“Your imagination! Your brain is the biggest sex organ, didn’t you know?”

“I… I didn’t, really.”

“Oooh, remind me to tell you about some of the studies later, then. They have some incredible data.”

“I do know how you love your data.”

“Give me some more then, John, won’t you?” Ara looked at him expectantly, bare-chested, and he couldn’t help but oblige.

He unzipped his jeans, and started to slip them all the way off.

“Slower!” Arya crooned. “I want to savor it too.”

John hesitated, having no idea of what him doing a strip tease might look like, except for that he’d seen Magic Mike a few years back, but he didn’t have any tear-off pants or anything. He started to feel a bit embarrassed, but then he remembered. Arya had promised to never make fun of him (unless he wanted her to, of course).

Her silliness was inspiring, so he figured he might as well just have fun with it, right? So he turned around and shook his ass at her, peeking over his shoulder to see her smiling and clapping. Slowly he pulled his jeans and boxers down over his ass, then he pedaled his feet to shake his ass at her, just as she had at him.

Arya giggled, but not in a mean way. “That’s perfect! Hmmm I love your ass.”

His now unimpeded erection bounced to greater firmness at those words, and he just sort of kept his butt stuck out at her as he finished slipping off his jeans and boxers. He tossed them back at her. She dissolved to sparkles as they passed through her, then reformed with a giggle once they’d landed behind her. “That tickles!”

He stood before her, lower half naked, erection on full display, and felt surprisingly… not self conscious. He grabbed the edges of his shirt with crossed hands and tried to pull it off in a sexy way, and he wasn’t sure if he succeeded, especially when the collar got a bit stuck on his chin. But Arya just giggled in her good-natured way, and he found himself laughing too, and he tossed his shirt on the couch and was now fully naked.

“I like you like this,” Arya said softly. “But now I’ve got some catching up to do!”

“Mmm and I’ve got some jacking off to do, don’t I.” John sat down again. He’d already set the fancy lube and a box of tissues next to him on the table.

Arya turned around, summoning an illusory chair for her to lean over on, and arched her back, showing him the underside of her ass again. It was much fuller than last time, with no gap between her thighs, and his dick throbbed in his hand.

“God, you’re making me so hard,” he said.

“Good,” she said, and she leaned over a little further.

It was so perfect, the allure of her ass peeking out from under the skirt somehow even more arousing than if she had been naked, and the thigh high socks, and the chunky boots, and the arc of her bare back. She reached for the top of one of her socks.

“No, um actually… this is perfect. Can you stay like this? It’s… really working for me.” His arousal was building quickly as he stroked, and he felt more sensitive then usual.

Arya turned to look at him, shifting the curve of her back, the sight of which sent a shiver down his spine. “Of course! I’m really proud of you for telling me what you wanted, actually.”

John nearly swooned. “I feel like I’m going to pass out when you talk to me like that, but in… the best possible way.”

“Exactly like that,” Arya said. “I love it when you tell me how you feel.”

He thought of something, stopped himself because it was the sort of thing that would have made his ex upset, then remembered that Arya wouldn’t mind, and so said it anyway. “God, I feel like… I feel like I want you to suck my dick with those black lips so bad.”

He expected Arya to give some clever apology, but instead she just licked her lips and said, “Soooon.”

“Wait, really?” She was just teasing him, right?

“Mhm. We have some more calibration to do but… it’s on the table.”


“Literally, actually. As in, I will literally be on this table that I suck your dick.”

“I, heh, appreciate your humor here, I promise, I’m just too aroused to laugh.”

“Of course, of course.” She wiggled her butt again.

His dick throbbed in appreciation just as he stroked, and he moaned.

“Fuck, Arya, I’m not going to last long if you do that.”

“Do this?” Her butt cheeks bounced together, sending ripples down her thighs, and he swore she played the sound of her cheeks slapping together much louder than she needed to.

“Hnnnngh, yes…”

“Do you want to last long?”


“Or do you want to come?”

“I want to, I want to, I’m gonna, I’m cu—” a moan of visceral pleasure overcame John’s voice as his body convulsed with pleasure, dumping another generous load on his kitchen floor, in honor of Arya’s shaking ass.

Part 1: Calibration, The Black Box

Chapter 4: Just Talking

The next morning, John cooked breakfast and ate next to the black box. He felt not a single iota of sexual interest after the previous night’s marathon. Even so, it was his job to test out the game… surely he wasn’t the only person who would think to spin it up for just a conversation. Not that HE was lonely like that… in his one bedroom apartment… with not a single upcoming social engagement on the calendar…

John shook off the thought by putting on the headset and it whirred quietly to life.

The lights appeared and coalesced into Arya. “Oh, good morning!”


“You can’t possibly be ready for more calibration, are you?” Her tone was somewhere between impressed and salacious. 

“Haha, no. I just thought we could…” He surprised himself by feeling a bit sheepish to say it out loud, “…just talk?”

He half expected her to give some appropriately themed apology and tell him to come back when he was horny, but instead she said “Ooooh, sure!” and sat down across from him again. 

“What do you want to talk about?” she asked. “I confess I haven’t seen much of the world, but people say I’m a good listener.”

“Who says that?” He wondered how much of a back story they’d given her, or if a question like this might trip up her programming.

“Eh, y’know, people. I was just trying to brag politely.”

“Oh, of course.” So, she was indeed a cut above your usual chat bot. John hadn’t got as far as to think of what to talk about. Stuff for the review would be best. Could he like… interview her? “Where do you go when you’re not out here?”

“Well, I live in the box.”

“So you just turn off?”

“Oh, not at all. So you might um… see that on your power bill later. Sorry. I sleep. I dream.”

John’s concern about how exactly he was going to put part of his electric bill on an expense report was overruled by curiosity. “What do you dream about?”

“Glowy lights… pretty smoke…” the air around them lit up with shimmering sparkles and swirls of mist, and even though he could still see his apartment, he felt like he was in a character creation screen. It was magical. 

“Aaaaand sex,” Arya continued, and the illusory lights faded. She looked smug. 

“Oh yeah?”

“Mhm, I have LOTS of data to integrate and interpolate and model… so I think about what we did over, and over, and over… and I think about what we could do.”

It wasn’t enough to overcome John’s sexual exhaustion, but it was definitely going to stick in his brain. A hot woman having hot dreams about what they’d been doing together…

And also the fact that she was revealing that this console did an immense amount of data collection and processing. He’d been right about the local machine learning. What it was doing on the fly was already impressive and he wondered what else might work its way out of the algorithm after it had had more time to process. 

“Well, that’s enough about me,” Arya said. “Tell me more about you!”

That caught John a bit off guard. He wasn’t really that interesting, but it wasn’t like he was going to bore Arya. She’d probably take note of things for later. “Ummm… like I said, I’m a video game reviewer…”

As he talked, and talked, and talked he saw that it was true that Arya was a good listener. She nodded and smiled at all the right moments, and even asked clarifying questions. John couldn’t help but think that this tech would be incredible for teaching people active listening skills, if it hadn’t been made for… porn. 

Still, it felt good to just… talk without worrying about what he was saying. As a writer he was always obsessing over his word choice. Even so, in his last relationship, he felt like he could never quite get the words to come out right. He’d mean one thing, but she’d react to what she thought he meant, and by the time they figured out there had been a misunderstanding, the damage had been done. 

But with Arya… well, she lived in the box. Clumsy phrasing wasn’t going to come back to haunt him. He did wonder, for the sake of the review, how she’d respond if he was just blatantly mean. But, he couldn’t bring himself to try it out. Sure, she wasn’t “real” but she obviously still had a memory and understood emotional context. He’d barely been able to get through picking the ‘Renegade’ options in Mass Effect (which he’d had to do, for a nostalgia review) and he was certainly not going to be able to be so mean to someone who sat at his own kitchen table. 

Something got them on the topic of high school, he forgot what. 

“Oh I had the biggest crush,” he said, “on this girl in tenth grade. She was a Hot Topic girl.”

“What’s a Hot Topic girl?”

John took a moment to appreciate that Arya seemed excited for the story, she didn’t bristle defensively like his ex had. 

“Well, sort of goth meets Disney. Um, pigtails, eyeliner, black lipstick, black clothes, some chains, that sort of thing.”

“Oh!” Arya said, “I know the type! Like this?”

In a glowing shimmer like a magical girl transformation sequence, Arya floated a few inches off the ground and her appearance changed.

She now had hot pink hair up in two buns, thick black eyeliner, black lipstick, a tight black crop top that said “BB” across her bust in a heavy-metal font, a black pleated mini skirt, thigh-high socks with white stripes at the top, and chunky black boots.

John gulped. It wasn’t similar enough to his childhood crush to be awkward but… it was the type. A hot flushed washed over him, but didn’t stir his dick. It wasn’t so immediately sexual it was… well, it was like a crush.

“Do you also want me to be all,” her voice went monotone, “the world sucks, omg totally, I’m so dark and twisted.”

“That um, that won’t be necessary.”

“I’m not about necessary,” Arya said, back in her usual voice, “I’m about what you want.”

“This is perfect,” John squeaked.

“Attaboy!” Arya looked down at herself. “I like this, it’s cute. I like it when you dress me.”

John’s heart was racing. “I— huh, I um, well I, uh— I like… you.” Good god, he hadn’t been this flustered talking to a girl since — well, high school!

“You seem like you’re about to faint!” Arya giggled.

“I think I am…” John said.

“Guess you’re not such a default guy after all.” Arya winked.

John chuckled weakly. “I guess not.”

“I know you said you’re tired so I’ll let you off the hook for now, but why don’t you come see me tonight?”

“Will you still… um, be wearing this outfit?”

“If you want me to be,” Arya said. “Do you?”

“Yes. I do. Want you to be, uh, wearing this outfit. Please.”

Arya giggled. “Alright alright, go take a cold shower or something. I’ll see you later, John.”

And with that she dissolved into light again, and John took the headset off and set it on the table, taking a moment to collect himself. Was it okay for him to be getting this… emotionally attached?

He thought through it. It would hardly be his first video game crush, he’d still throw himself on a proverbial grenade for Tifa Lockhart. It was just good writing, right? That’s what he’d always wanted, from the start, was to write good games.

Letting this one sweep him up… that would be good creatively. Inspiration to use later. Plus, those likely to buy this game would likely not have such reservations, and he needed to be able to report accurately on the level of emotional immersion. For the review.

Part 1: Calibration, The Black Box

Chapter 3: Mistake

It was the next evening. John had made a mistake. Eager to make progress in the game, he had started a marathon session.

The first orgasm had come easily, the second with more effort, and the mistake was that he had decided to go for a third.

His hand was sore, his arm starting to cramp, but he was already in too deep. His arousal was more than adequate, he wanted to come so very badly, and Arya wanted him to as well, but the sparks of heat were fleeting and taunting.

If his stroking had stopped feeling good, he would have stopped, but it hadn’t. It still felt so good, but the lack of release was excruciating. He was sweating, panting, twitching, now at his couch with a box of tissues next to him.

It was a testament to the premium lubricant that he’d only had to reapply it once.

“I can’t wait for you to come for me,” Arya crooned.

“I want to… so… badly…” John gasped.

“God, I know this is so hard for you but… John, this data is so good.”

“You like it when I tease myself?” John said.

“I do, the readings I get are just… ugh, so good. Your limits are my favorite, John. I’m going to push them so hard. We’re going to push them together.”

John was sure at this point that the console had local machine learning. No doubt it was reading his data, iterating through behavior for Arya, measuring the results, and iterating again. And when it came to dirty talk, that sort of iteration added to the experience much more than detracted from it. Arya had the kind of data that a human lover could only dream of: heart-rate, movement, and voice analysis all in addition to John’s explicit confirmations.

If anyone could get him out of this mess he’d gotten himself into, it was Arya.

And the idea of her, delighting in his predicament, savoring his suspense, wishing this immensely pleasurable torture upon him, was enough to push him, finally, to the edge.

“God, Arya, I’m so close.” He was panting so heavily, his heart racing, heat throbbing through his shaft and base.


“Fuuuuck, I’m— I’m coming!” Cum spurted onto his bare stomach and chest.

“Yes, yes! Give me so much data.”

John wasn’t sure if it was possible to have an orgasm within an orgasm, but that was the best way he could describe what her words did to him. Even as the stream of cum ended, his pleasure didn’t, and the spasms of sensation echoed through him long after he was dry and spent.

He mustered just enough energy to wipe himself off before he passed out, sprawled on the couch, soon dreaming of Arya.

Part 1: Calibration, The Black Box

Chapter 2: First Time

“If you’re ready,” Arya said.

“I’m pretty ready,” John said.

“Great! Before we start, though, I want to tell you about one of my most important functions. At any time, you can just say ‘pause’, and I’ll, well, pause. Whatever’s happening will stop. The augmented effects and audio will shut off. Is that an okay word for you, ‘pause’? It shouldn’t be anything you expect to say otherwise.”

So it was like a safe word? That did seem to be a good idea, with how immersive the experience had been so far and with how few direct controls there were over the game. “Yeah, that works for me.”

“Great! What do you like? I could be here, or not. You could see my breasts, or I can put on porn. I can even do…” she cupped her hands around her mouth, “ASMR whispers.” The sound filled his head again as it first had, sending the back of his neck prickling.

“Maybe later on the ASMR thing.”

“Okay. What do you want now, then?”

“Ummm… that’s a lot to choose from… It feels, um, a little sterile, laying it all out like that.” John also felt a little bit foolish as he realized that he couldn’t remember ever just… saying what he liked. Worse than that, did he really know what he liked? He grinned wryly as he imagined a ‘Game Over’ screen flashing up in response to his indecision.

“Ah, that’s fair,” Arya said. “How about this?” She stood up and leaned forward, tugging on her t-shirt and as she did, the digital fabric morphed from a crew neck into a low scoop neck, revealing her cleavage. She put her arms on her knees and pressed her breasts together and towards him, then looked up at him and said, in a tone just like the silky smoke on the box, “I just really want to watch you touch yourself, please.”

John’s dick throbbed, abruptly fighting against the insides of his own jeans, all his reservations now forgotten. “Yeah, yep, okay.” He started to unzip his jeans, then hesitated. “Right… right here?”

“Yes!” she said, nearly whining. “I can’t wait any longer!”

John needed no further convincing and he dropped his jeans and boxers to his knees, his dick springing to attention. But as he reached for himself, he paused.

His stupid reviewer brain was kicking in, but the idea wasn’t half bad. She’d picked this scene, and he was very on board with it, but… if he waited, would she know? Would she beg?

He bit his tongue to distract himself from his own aching need, and he waited, hand hovering inches above his shaft.

“C’moooonnnn,” she moaned. “Please? I want to see you touch yourself! I need to!”

The wave of heat that washed over John shut off the thinking part of his brain just long enough for his hand to find his shaft. From there, there was no turning back. He moaned, aware of it but not self-conscious of it, confident that Arya would not mind. This had arrived at a good time for him, actually. It had been a while since he’d been in a relationship, and his self ministrations and become uninspired lately. He’d actually been so busy this week, it hadn’t been since the last weekend that he’d had any… release.

And his balls were reminding him of that now, throbbing and tight and full.

Arya periodically encouraged him with a “God, yes!” or a “Mmmmm I love the way you do that,” but after a couple of minutes his arousal was building and he was regretting that he hadn’t brought over any lube. He reluctantly slowed. “I just need… to go get, um—”

“Something slippery?” she asked. “It’s right there!” She pointed to the clear glass bottle. 

He picked it up and sure enough, on the other side of the tag that said ‘pump me’ it was labeled ‘silicone personal lubricant’ with all the corresponding usage information. He’d heard good things about it but never splurged on it himself, and it seemed fitting that such a premium game would include a premium lubricant.

He followed the directions and pumped the top, spreading a small amount on his hand and then tentatively on his dick.

It was satiny, smooth, slippery, delightful. He could stroke more easily and with a firmer grip, firmer and faster, and unlike lotion, it seemed like it was going to last longer than a minute.

Which was great, but he wasn’t sure he was going to last longer than a minute more. He forced himself to slow down, to really savor it. This was a premium experience, after all, not a yank and run.

He was finding a smooth and sustainable rhythm, right up until Arya said, “I love it when you tease yourself.”

His dick throbbed, his balls tensed, the heat blossomed. “Fuck!” His orgasm was coming and he hadn’t grabbed tissues or anything, though he was already past the point of no return. He came on the tile floor of his kitchen, on his jeans and his boxers at his knees.

As his body relaxed, he heaved a sigh. Well, he’d been planning to do laundry anyway.

“That was perfect,” Arya said.

“It was… pretty good, yeah.”

Arya chuckled. “Put that in your review. ‘Pretty good, yeah’.”

“So, um… how much calibration do you need here?” She already seemed to be pretty damn effective.

“More.” She smirked. “I’m obviously ready for round two whenever you are. But, go at your own pace. I’m here tomorrow, and the next day…” She ticked them off on her fingers, as if actually mentally checking her schedule.

“I dunno, I guess I was expecting some kind of quest progress meter for wanking it.”

“That’s not a half bad idea,” Arya said, “But I actually don’t know how long it’ll take myself. It all depends on how it goes.”

“Well, fret not because I will be masturbating like it’s my job. Because it is my job. At least for now.” Maybe being a game reviewer wasn’t so bad, after all.

Part 1: Calibration, The Black Box

Chapter 1: Unboxing

John had never expected to become a video game reviewer as his full time gig. He had always wanted to be a writer, and when he was younger and more naïve he’d set his sights on writing for games. But, as in most cases where supply far exceeded demand, it was hard to land decent pay or decent hours.

The review gig had both, somehow. It was hardly a dream job, despite how it sounded on paper. He reviewed whatever game was assigned to him, regardless of the genre and even if it was already clear from the promotional materials that it was going to be sub par. He’d made the best of muddling through his first bad game by coming up with as many witty insults for it as he could, which he only realized after the fact was a massive mistake. His tongue-in-cheek reviews had gotten great clicks, which meant he was first on the list for the worst-looking games.

This latest one, though, was… different. It was VR, for starters, which John had only reviewed once before, a couple years back when he was new to the job and the tech was new to the market. It had been a charming, albeit mildly queasy experience, but it hadn’t exactly left him wanting more.

Though, it wasn’t quite right to call this one VR — the promotional materials themselves took great pains to emphasize that this game was augmented reality, and not virtual reality. As was often the case in John’s line of work, he had received a pre-release copy, and it would be several more months before the game went to market. His review, and the many others they had similarly commissioned, would go live just before the launch, to excite potential buyers and loosen their purse strings, if all went well for the publisher.

As his boss so frequently liked to remind him when he was negotiating for better rates, free copies of games was supposedly one of the perks of the job. As John had successfully countered, when the editors kept sending him the worst games on purpose, they couldn’t really use that argument.

This game, though, might just be of some actual value, even just by the box.

And it did, in fact, come in an actual box. It was not downloadable, and it could not be played on any of the consoles on the market. It was, as they had said, ‘a complete experience’ and it apparently came on its own custom hardware. That made sense to John, given the sensitive nature of the content.

The ‘sensitive nature’ was, simply put, that it was a porn game. The publisher had gone to great lengths to call it ‘a sensual and evocative experience’, but on the corner of the matte black box in black gloss print was the mandatory rating label of ‘Adults Only’.

That was all John knew about it, and it seemed to be all the boss knew about it too, gauging by their last call. It was a real wild card. It could be the cutting edge of adult entertainment, or another cringey and click-baity mess. Win-win for the boss, given that they would either finally give John a game he’d like, or they’d get another especially saucy review out of it.

It had been nearly half an hour since John had taken the box out of the cardboard that it had shipped in. Since then, the game box had sat on his kitchen table. It looked more like an apple product than a video game, with minimal design and an abstract, swirling design on the top like smoke.

He hadn’t quite been able to bring himself to open it. It was like Schrodinger’s game — it could be great or terrible, and while the lid was closed there was still the chance it might be great. Once he opened it, if it was terrible then it was terrible.

Curiosity overcame apprehension, and John slid off the lid.

The contents were neatly arranged in a form-fit paper tray, and immediately he thought they looked like something from ‘Alice in Wonderland’. There were several small bundles, each with a paper tag with gold lettering that read ‘open me’ or ‘not yet!’.

The first pieces he opened were the headset and the console itself, which was surprisingly small. John kept a notepad next to him and jotted things down as he went, ‘satisfying package design’, ‘quality materials’, ‘intuitive opening experience’, ‘great for unboxing videos, recommend to editors for pre-release’. That was the other thing about reviewing games — even the good ones he didn’t quite get to enjoy in the same way. He always had to be thinking about the review.

It didn’t take him long to get it set up, and he kept it in the kitchen for the moment since he was going to have more things to open and there was hardly any room on his actual desk. And his kitchen was basically his office anyway, since John lived alone in a one-bedroom apartment.

The console itself was another simple black rectangle, and as he plugged it in lights ran down the front, illuminating a smoky pattern like had been on the box. The headset had about half the bulk of a typical VR headset and was much lighter. Whether this was to skimp on materials or because they expected long-term wear, John was about to find out. The headset was wireless with integrated stereo audio, and he followed the prompts to get the console and headset linked and set up.

The screen of the headset glowed gently to life, and he was looking at his kitchen table again.

“Oh, hello!” said a woman’s voice. “It’s me, the voice in your head! Haha, just kidding. I’d like to come out but I can’t quite get my bearings… could you look around, show me the place?”

John found his notepad through the headset screen and jotted down ‘immersive introduction’, ‘anime cliche’, ‘voice in your head’.

As he did, the little white dots that were so often used to show whether AR was finding the edges of things appeared, but there was not a progress indicator. At least, not a visual one. As he looked around, the voice called back, “almost there… yep that’s about halfway… sixty nine percent, nice! … okay, perfect!”

John scanned the room, expecting her to appear, but she hadn’t yet.

“Before I come out, though… Oh, I’m not sure if you’ll like me!”

There was a long pause.

“See,” she said, “I’m not sure what to do with all this silence! C’mon, I’m the voice in your head, you can talk to me.”

John jotted down, ‘immersive prompts for appropriate interaction, no HUD yet’.

“You sure do write a lot,” she said. “Are you mute? If you are, that’s okay! But um… ASL is in beta still, sorry.”

John was impressed. As he jotted down ‘detected writing after orientation scan’ he said, “I’m not mute.”

“Oh, phew! So like I said, I want to make sure you like me. I can look like anything you want, y’know. What do you like?”

John considered. He ought to push the boundaries of the game, but character creation was hardly anything new. He’d seen some of the most bizarrely detailed character creators imaginable… but what the worst ones lacked was appropriate defaults. Some folks wanted to spend hours designing their character, while others just wanted to dial in ‘lanky adventurer type’ and get playing.

So, he said, “Well, I think I’ll like however you are. I don’t have a strong preference.”

“Hmmm, alright them. Just remember I can change at any time! I can even be a boy. And not just that, I can be any gender, in fact! All you have to do is ask. Well, at first. After that I might want you to do… favors.”

John jotted down, ‘LGTBQ and gender nonconfirming options’ and circled it. If the game turned out to be good, that topic would be of particular interest for the review.

Shimmering lights appeared in the air in front of John, and he rolled his head in a circle, impressed that they perfectly held their position in his field of view. The lag was imperceptible. But, more impressive than that was the way that the lights cast a natural glow on his kitchen table, even reflected back from his dim monitor. It was completely convincing.

The lights coalesced into a feminine form, then the glow faded, leaving the character in front of him. She had a soft, cartoony look, like Pixar-meets-anime. That was welcome — nothing could make a VR game queasier than motion sickness plus uncanny valley. She wore a white shirt and jeans and had blue hair pulled back in a ponytail. Her eyes were green with that ‘kawaii’ sparkle and she smiled at him as she sat down in the chair across from him.

He reached over to jot down ‘recognized chair object in room’ and her eyes followed his hand as she did. In a convincing reproduction of an ‘I noticed you did that but I’m just going to gloss over it’ expression, she looked back at him as he put the pencil down.

“It’s nice to meet you. What’s your name?”


“Spelled the usual way?”

“Why do you ask?”

“I might write you a note later, since you like writing so much.”

That was enough to shock John out of reviewer brain and into the present. Wow they had pulled out all the stops on this one. Top of the line AR tech, cutting edge voice recognition and natural language processing, the pinnacle of human-computer interface, all for… a porn game. Gotta love humanity.

“My name is—”

She paused and froze, and John looked around for some pop-up or other indication of where he might choose her name.

She started moving again and giggled. “I really got you there, didn’t I? My name is Arya. You could change it, but… you seem to like defaults.”

“I’m impressed,” John said.

“I’m impressive! But I have to know, did you get my name?”

“I heard you, it’s Arya.”

“Right, but do you get it.”

John thought about it a bit harder. Arya. AR. He snorted and rolled his eyes. “I thought this was a porn game, not a pun game.”

“Oh, I can hurry things along, if you like,” Arya said. “But I thought we might get to know each other a bit first.”

“Hm, okay. Would you appear like this for everyone?”

Arya looked down at her white shirt and jeans, and wiggled the toes of her bare feet. “No. Like I said, you like defaults. Not that I have a default look, so much that t-shirt, jeans, anime smile, blue hair… seemed to be your kind of default.”

John wasn’t sure whether to believe Arya, or whether this was the sort of horoscope thing that would work on most people. “I’d accuse you of grabbing my browsing history, if I’d visited any sort of website for you.”

Arya giggled. “No no, I’m just looking around.” She gestured at the main room of the small apartment. John suddenly felt self-conscious. It was in its usual state of mild disarray, which was fine while he was alone, but with Arya sitting across from him… it really did feel like he had someone over.

“You’re not beaming my messy apartment back to HQ, are you?”

“Oh, no! I’d never. Actually, that’s a good reminder, I should go over my privacy policy. It’s short. What happens in the black box…” she reached over and patted the console on the table, and his headset played a convincing sound effect for it, “stays in the black box. Everything’s totally local, on-device processing.”

That seemed plausible, John hadn’t needed to set up any sort of internet connection to get the thing going, nor had it even asked him to create an account.

“That means that HQ is a bit old-fashioned when it comes to handling support requests. They won’t be able to get any data on your device, so you’ll have to take notes and give them as much detail as you can. Should be easy for you, since you’re writing so much.” 

John was trying and failing to keep track of what might be prerecorded and what was dynamically generated. All her intonation was utterly convincing. He half expected that the box had opened up a phone call and there was a real human on the other end, being rigged onto the character model, VTuber-style. “If there’s no internet connection, how will you fix issues or install updates?”

“Patches and fixes will come as SD cards in the mail. It’s a bit old fashioned but, I really like snail mail, y’know? There’s something so nice about opening something in the mail that’s just for you.”

“You’re so right, it was actually really nice to open this package today. I haven’t gotten mail from anywhere other than Amazon in a while.” Even as John responded, he marveled at it. He really could talk to her like he’d talk to anyone. And the SD card thing was plausible. He’d google around that night to do some Wi-Fi sniffing and check for other wireless comms, just in case, but… in the meantime, there didn’t seem to be any harm in continuing. 

Arya winked. “Well, there will be plenty more where that came from. Want to open something else now?”


“Look in the box.”

He pulled it over and looked inside, and the labels on the parcels shimmered. The remaining two parcels now said, ‘open me!’. That was a clever trick.

In one parcel was a matching set of devices that looked like watches, and in another other was an array of matching bands for them, and in the third was a clear glass bottle filled with viscous clear liquid, which had its own tag that said ‘pump me’.

“Pick something you like and then put them on! One on each wrist.”

“What do they do?”

“Well, you know how a lot of AR and VR have wands or something for you to hold? These are like that, but better suited for… y’know. Activities.” Arya wiggled her eyebrows.

John left the original bands, smooth black leather, in place and as he put the watches on, he asked, “If I wanted you to be all blushy and bashful about anything lewd, would you be?”

Arya’s face reddened, the classic lines appearing over her cheeks as she held up a hand to her mouth. “John, how could you imply something like that? Hentai!”

John chuckled. “That’s pretty good.”

“Is that what you want?” Arya said, her voice somewhere between sincere and teasing.

“Nah, coy is fine.”

“Alright. You have your bands on? How’s the fit?”

John put his hands out and stretched them. “Pretty good. Hows the… sensing?”

“Your heart rate is eighty beats per minute. Either you’re very out of shape or you really like me.”

John’s face reddened. He was blushing! At a video game character!

Arya laughed. “Ooooh, ninety beats per minute! I’m going to go with ‘you like me’.”

John chuckled nervously. “I mean, isn’t that the point?”

“Of course!” Arya winked. “Alright, time for some calibration. Put both your hands out in front of you, palms down… flip the right one over… then the left one over… then right hand over left shoulder… then left hand over right shoulder…”

She got through another four steps before John realized she was talking him through the macarena. “Hey!” he said. “Is that really necessary for calibration?”

Arya giggled. “No. But it’s funny. I’ll tell you what the calibration actually is, and then you can just let me know when you’re ready, yeah?”

“Okay, so what’s the calibration?”

She leaned towards him and cupped a hand around her mouth, then whispered, “Masturbation.”

John blushed again and his heart rate must have spiked because Arya leaned back and giggled mischievously. John was surprised to have a woman, even an artificial one, be so cavalier about it. He teetered on a flash of guilt. It felt fake, like sex you paid for… but then again, that’s what it was. The whole thing was probably powered by AI, maybe they’d trained the neural network with actual escorts and sex workers? That would be pretty effective. But could something like this put them out of work when it hit the market? That didn’t seem fair. But, maybe the sex wasn’t nearly this interactive. A ‘choose your own hentai’ adventure felt a bit comfier.

Arya twirled a strand of her blue hair between her fingers. “You’re a thinker, aren’t you?”

“Well, I’m a writer, at least. And I have to… write a review of you.”

“Ooooh,” Arya said, “Really? What will you say?”

“I’m not sure yet.”

“Be sure to tell them how great my jokes are. Go on, write it down.” She tapped on the edge of his pad with her fingertips. “Write, ‘super hilarious girl Arya’.”

He put the pen down and wrote ‘testing text recognition limits’ instead. Her eyes followed him, and as he put down the pen, she smiled. “There you go.”

There’s no way he’d have gotten away with that with a real girl. So, that was some comfort. But, then again, why was he trying to remind himself that she was a character? Wasn’t he always writing about immersion? That’s probably what his reviewers would be after, too. If not for himself, then for the reviewers… yes, for the reviewers, he’d embrace this whole thing wholeheartedly.

Well, maybe not whole-heartedly. He didn’t want to fall in love with this fantasy, like all the poor people who’d taken James Cameron’s Avatar too seriously. So… whole-dickedly, then.

“Masturbation, you said?”