Submitted by Alexandra:
I had made the apparent mistake of writing "hiking" as an interest in my Internet profile. For some reason, guys really seem to gravitate towards that. I received messages like, "Hey, I like hiking, too. We should go on a hike together. You know, just us," and "Hiking means that you're adventurous. Are you adventurous in other ways, too? JK, LOL. Are you, though?"
These, of course, were ignored. However, when Jeff wrote me, he seemed like a genuinely nice guy, and the very fact that he didn't mention anything even subtly implying sex (as far as I could tell) made me curious about him.
He asked me where I hiked around the area, and then asked if I had ever been to a place nearby called Hell's Canyon. I hadn't been there, and he offered to take me there before lunch some weekend.
Despite the fact that he had offered to take me in broad daylight, I asked him if we could save it for another time. For a first date, I liked the idea of keeping it simple. Just lunch and seeing how things went. He liked the idea.
Lunch was at a local diner-type place. We sat down, and I noticed fairly quickly that something about him was a little off. For starters he inserted the word, "daring" into almost each of his sentences:
"Meeting anyone in the real world from online is a little daring."
"I like to travel. I've been to Canada. I'm daring."
"These eggs are delicious. Dare to try them."
At one point, after a lull in conversation, he said, "I can fill a coffee cup with urine from over ten feet away."
I took it as a joke and started to laugh, but he stared at me, dead serious. I replied, "That's pretty daring."
Other than these quirks, he seemed like a decent guy. When he asked me if I wanted to just drive by Hell's Canyon after lunch, I said that I'd do it, but that I wanted to take separate cars.
It was a bit further away than I thought it would be, but once we made it there, he parked and asked me if I would go just a little way in with him. There was an easy in/easy out path with a cliff that looked over a forest.
I told him that I was afraid of heights. He said that I didn't have to go close to the edge.
We made it to the overhang and he went to the edge, himself. He looked over it and called back to me that I really should come and look with him. I repeated that I didn't care for heights, and he promised that he'd prevent anything from happening to me.
Thinking, stupidly, that this was a good opportunity to demonstrate trust, I made my way, slowly, to where he stood.
I crept closer to the edge of the cliff and looked down, over the trees. It was a beautiful sight, but I could feel my heart racing, and I retreated from the edge.
At least I tried to, because Jeff was standing less than a foot away, right behind me, blocking me. I turned to look at him. He smiled, grabbed my back, and made as if to push me over.
I screamed bloody, dripping murder and flailed, landing a solid crack to his face. He pulled me back.
"Saved your life!" he said.
I could barely hear him over the ringing in my ears, and when I looked at him again, he was rubbing his face. "What was that for?" he asked.
I stammered, "You... you pushed me! You know I'm afraid of heights!"
He rolled his eyes and said, "Where's your sense of adventure?" and he then stepped towards me, grabbed my shoulders, and made as if to push me off again.
This time, I landed my fist right on his ear, and would've grabbed his neck if he didn't let go. He did.
Instead of waiting around for an explanation, I scrambled up the embankment. He held his ear and was shouting expletives over and over.
The caring part of me would have stuck around to see if I had really hurt him, but I realized that he'd probably take advantage of that and make to push me off the cliff again, now that he knew how much I didn't like it. I wouldn't have put it past him.
I hurried down the path, back to my car, climbed in, and drove off.
He called my cell. I let it go to voicemail. He called again, and then three times more.
When I made it home, I called one of my friends, who came by and listened to Jeff's voicemails with me:
"I locked my keys in my car! You have to come back here and wait with me!"
"You bitch! I can't hear out of my ear! And I locked my keys in my car! Get back here and help me get them out!"
"I locked my keys in my car! It's going to be nighttime soon! My ear hurts and you have to come back here and get my keys out of my car!"
It wasn't even noon yet. I deleted each of his messages, and hung out with my friend, instead.
Submitted by Alexandra: