The Definition of Sexy By Alison Tyler
I took great pleasure in the fact that Byron hated Connor, that he called him dumb, clearly intimidated because Connor was so handsome—and this is the funny thing. I’ve never been into handsome. I’m much more of a Billy Bob Thornton than a Brad Pitt sort of girl. But Connor was a modern James Dean, blonde and blue-eyed and almost angelic, the kind of stunning that turns heads. I didn’t want him for those reasons. I craved him because he saw something in me, even at my most beaten down, and he went after me. I have a photo of him following a night of no sleep. He’s wearing black jeans and no shirt under an open blazer, and he’s smoking a cigarette, but barely, the butt dangling from his lower lip. He has that insolent fuck you look that has always made me wet in a heartbeat.—Dark Secret Love
I won’t be so bold to declare that I’m bringing sexy back. But I was having a discussion with a friend the other day about the definition of sexy. I couldn’t actually define the word. I saw pictures in my head. I heard song snippets. Breathed perfume. Yes, I felt, heard, and even smelled the word. But what is sexy?
The hot burning filament or cold hard desire.
I’ve been out with girlfriends over the years who have pointed to some guy in a bar and giggled. Oh, god look at him. And I’ll look. And I’ll never quite get it. Not that I haven’t been with attractive men. But I don’t do cookie cutter good looks. I need something else.
Here’s my best story. When I worked (oh so briefly) in casting, there was an assistant director who dressed in rumpled suits, looked like he never slept, had the pallor of a work-a-holic vampire. Most of the girls on the lot paid him little attention. And then one day, he was walking behind me, and he said something kinky. Something flat out, blush-inducingly filthy. And he said it to me.
I know what I was wearing—cream-colored suit with pinstripes. Black oxford tie-up shoes. Big silver hoops. My hair was long and dark and curly. I still had someone else’s rock on my finger. I still slept in the bed of a man I didn’t love.
He said these words only loud enough for me to hear, and when I whipped my head around to look at him, he winked at me and walked away.
We never did anything. I didn’t fuck him. I was at that point so mired in my relationship that I could hardly get my head up to breathe. But I never forgot the way I felt when the AD spoke to me. Those dirty words lit me up—lit him up. He went from off my radar to flame-red Maserati in six seconds flat.
What is sexy?
I’ve seen it.
There’s a moment in an old sitcom where the boss sits at his desk and slowly rolls up his crisp white shirtsleeves. Sexy. There’s a move men make when they loosen their ties at the end of a hard day. Sexy. There’s a look—just a look—that some men know how to give a woman. You can’t find the definition in the dictionary. But it’s there. You’ll know when you see it—or hear it—or close your eyes and breathe in the scent of it.
That’s what I tried to capture in Dark Secret Love.
Alison Tyler is the author of 25 erotic novels, including Dark Secret Love and the upcoming sequel The Delicious Torment. Her short stories have appeared in anthologies edited by Zane, Stephen Elliott, and Sommer Marsden. Find her at alisontyler.blogspot.com, especially late at night.