You insisted so much, my software told me, that I accepted a date. Online —that was implicit— but I don't think the Metaverse is something you understand.
You paid for an expensive table no more beautiful than a free one, your avatar showing no other beauty than a paid AI's statistical model of visual appeal.
You sat next to me in the reclusive intimacy of dim romantic light. I was sitting far away with two friends for company, chatting with them as you gazed into my eyes.
When you offered to go to what you called your place I put my avatar in automatic and disengaged. I wasn't sending a robot with you. There was no me, and barely any you. You played a very strange online game. I made myself a hamburger and watched a tennis match.
The next day at the office you were weird, I think. Maybe you tried to avoid me. I don't want to think about why.
But you didn't have to. The office I go to is huge, spare, beautiful, and almost lonely. You and the rest of my coworkers are far-away blobs of light. Your speech is pleasant, heavily filtered, professional.