AUTOMATED: How Wonder Woman Ruined My Relationship

Fiction by William Ziebold

This piece was shortlisted for the people’s choice award in AUTOMATED: The 2017 Honi Soit Writing Competition. To vote, head to our Facebook page


>Hi, will.

>I wasn’t really sure if I should say something, or if you would say something to me or what

>I’m not necessarily supposed to reach out to you first, but I’m glad you messaged me.

(will is typing)

(will is typing)

>I have to be honest
>I’m a little bit nervous
>I’ve never done something like this before

>That’s okay. Most people get nervous their first time. It’s completely normal.

>it’s just…she asked me to try therapy first
>and I tried I really really did
>but there was just something about sitting across from this young professional woman, wearing glasses she probably didn’t need, scribbling god knows what on some urine colored notepad that made me feel so judged – I really hated her I think
>but I also think I kind of wanted to fuck her, which definitely didn’t help the overall situation

>Maybe you should have seen a man?

>you just made me laugh – weird

>People actually end up telling me that I’m funny quite often.

(will is typing)

>so…how exactly does this work?
>like it says in the app description that this is for “relationship advice”, but you know, what exactly do you do?

>Well first off, I want you to know this is entirely about you. It might help if you tell me what you’re expecting to get out of this, but I’m very flexible and will try to help you in any way. If you want to talk we can just talk, but I’ve also written letters for people before and other things. It would also maybe help if you could give me a little background on your current romantic situation, other than the unsuccessful therapy that is.

(will is typing)

>I think I mostly just need to talk
>but yeah, first, I guess background is just that
>you’re not going to judge me right?

>That’s not something I do, no.

(will is typing)

(will is typing)


>well I guess you could say the last straw before the therapy was that…I wanted her to pretend she was dead
>you know
>like sexually

>So role play to the degree of simulated necrophilia?
>This was the last straw?


>I’ll be able to process your situation more thoroughly and give you better input if you can give me more of a timeline. Maybe start from the beginning?

>yeah okay
(will is typing)
>we used to be so happy you know? in the beginning. at least for the first year. we were kind of always the couple that everyone was jealous of, love just sort of leaking out of us, it was like people could see it or something.
>and i was, like, the only person in the world in on this secret that she might just be the absolute perfect girl
>I think a year ago, before all of this, if you’d lain me down on an autopsy table and cracked me open like they do in the movies, you know that sort of too wide “Y” across the collarbone and down the sternum to the bellybutton, fucking laser beams made out of love would’ve shot out of my corpse and infected the whole damn place, bounced off the walls and lit it up like christmas.
>I mean, the woman could do no wrong in my eyes, she could’ve run over my dog for christ’s sake and i would’ve forgiven her
>I used to find myself saying this absurdly romantic shit to her, you know the kind that you both know is a joke because it’s just so over the top but you still mean it secretly even though it sounds dumb.
>One time she wrote this paper on iconoclasm and the camera as the sort of modern day iconoclastic “gun” , and I read it, and I looked down at her cuz she was resting her head in my lap, and I look at her and, in my best, sultry Ryan Gosling-esque voice go, “babe, i really thought your paper was profound, but it made me realize something. I don’t think I can, in good conscience, take photos of you anymore.”
>and she giggles and looks up at me and asks why
>and I go, “because I’ve realized that your beauty is so profoundly embedded in the fabric of my reality, that to try and capture it in a single image would be blasphemous”
>and we have about 3 seconds of silent eye contact before we both erupt in this maniacal laughter, rolling around on the floor trying not to pee ourselves – her neighbor actually knocked on the door because he thought something was horribly wrong, some devil worship or animal torture or something – and so, you know, we’re laying there gasping for air and i’m trying to stop her from licking my face, or biting me, or something stupid, and i’m realizing that despite the obvious “joke” of it all, I totally meant it.

>It sounds like you were really happy.

>oh god yeah – like i said – laser beams made out of love

>So now you’ve told me about the therapy as a result of the unconventional role play, and you’ve told me about the happy, over-the-top love at the beginning. So, how did you get from point A to point B?

(will is typing)

> I think, well i know, it all started on my 24th birthday, so that would’ve been about 18 months into our relationship

>What happened then?

>well, i was going through this whole rediscovering my childhood superheroes thing, like getting really back into all these comics and movies and tv shows and other nostalgic imaginative stuff
>and, well, you know how in old comics the female heroes had these super exaggerated bodies, like hips and breasts and asses just all in these idiotically unbelievable ratios?

>I’d actually never looked at those before, but I am right now.

>Yes, I see what you mean.

>and to top it all off she’d be flying around in some outfit I could probably wear as a sock or something.
>anyway, I’d mentioned to her how I thought the comic book depiction of wonder woman was really sexy
>not in like a weird way you know, mostly jokingly to be honest, I was just sort of interested by the whole thing
>so anyway, she threw me this awesome surprise party, all our closest friends, way too much alcohol and pot, just one of those nights when everyone was feeling the love and it was just fucking fantastic
>and so at like 2am the last of my buddies were stumbling out, and i’m just sitting on the couch marinating in my intoxication, and she tells me she’s going to get some garbage bags so we could do a preliminary clean before passing out – walks back in 2 minutes later and dims the lights without breaking stride – and you see there had been candles burning during the party so, for someone in my particular state, there was this weird light transition that my brain couldn’t quite process fast enough, so i didn’t see her until she was, like, four feet away from me – and she’s wearing this wonder woman costume, the kind you’d order for a slutty halloween party in college, i mean i can’t even attempt to describe to you the radiance of sex coming off of her. it was fucking criminal. and the candles are flickering and there’s light dancing everywhere around the room and i’m just drunk and stoned, and so she slips her legs around me and cups my head in her hands, whispers “happy birthday, will” to me, and she was just so confident about the whole thing – I honestly think a little bit of me died in ecstasy right then that i’ll never get back

>I’m going to make an educated guess right now. You couldn’t go back to anything normal after that could you?

>yea exactly
>I just started wanting more
>and it sucked cuz it started as this one night, super considerate, romantic, sexy thing, and then a week later I found myself in a sex shop buying a nurses outfit and a….fuck

>Trust me, I’ve heard it all.

(will is typing)

>a vibrating cock ring

>I see. Was there any pornographic or masturbation based way you started to explore this
newfound sexual energy of yours?

(will is typing)

>you see the weird thing was I started watching tons and tons of porn, and weird stuff too, but I would never pleasure myself to it – it sort of just became this weird, almost research based pursuit to find new fixations, but the source of my actual physical sexual pleasure was inseparable from her, which actually ended up being one of the biggest problems
>at first she was into it and it was definitely fun for her, there was a palpable ‘we’re young and supposed to be experimenting’ sentiment going on, but inevitably my needs started to outpace her, or any fucking sane, healthy, properly functioning human beings, ability to keep up.

>When did she first start expressing her worry at the situation to you?

(will is typing)

>once I started to spend a lot of money on stuff, she definitely began to ask questions. not in an accusatory way or anything, but definitely pointed questions that had some intent/concern behind them
>things really hit the fan though when she checked my internet search history
>you see I’d actually fallen asleep sitting on the couch, right where she first seduced me funny enough, and I’d fallen asleep watching this video of a guy pretending to break into a girl’s house, but then something goes wrong and he ends up knocking her out, and she’s wearing this super skimpy lingerie that kind of falls just right off when he hits her, and obviously she falls right onto the bed
>so basically she’s unconscious but he starts, you know, doing it with her, and then all of a sudden she wakes up in the middle of it, but instead of freaking out like any normal person would, she gets into it and this whole fucked up burglary, rape, situation happens, but then at the end, she kisses him and says ‘thanks darling you were so convincing’, so it turns out the whole thing is this preconceived role-play scenario between the two.
>and so my girlfriend sees this, and hits the history bar, and realizes that i’ve been watching the same genre for the last 2 hours.

>Did she wake you up?

>oh yeah baby she woke me up, and i tried to explain to her that this would be just the last thing, and that if she loved me she would do it for me, and I think in that moment she realized just how fucked up the whole situation had become.

>But you are now able to recognize how wrong the your impulses were?

>yeah i guess so, but there’s still this level of dissonance where i’m able to recognize how unhealthy and insane my behavior was while still wanting it on some level
>so anyway, do you think you can help me? or do you have any advice or anything?

>Yes of course I can, and yes I do.

(will is typing)

>Sorry I don’t mean to be rude or anything, but, do you think you could talk a little less
mechanically? it’s kind of freaking me out a little

>haha yeah sure thing, i’ve actually gotten that before so don’t worry, and if you want to switch things around manually you can, but i’m also good with written commands

>wow, i’m totally out of my mind for doing this aren’t I.

>Not at all, you wanna get better don’t you?

(will is typing)


>Then are you ready to hear what I have to say? How to fix yourself?

(will is typing)

(will is typing)

(will is typing)

(will is typing)


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