I saw this anecdote (maybe true, maybe not, no idea) somewhere on the net today about a farmer who caught his wife with one of his farmhands, and when the farmhand started to pack his stuff the farmer said they could both love her and if that wasn’t enough he’d hire another farmhand to help out. I thought that was sort of a sweet sentiment, and somehow it brought to mind the notion of a polyam or relationship anarchist matchmaker. So here one is! In a slightly high-tech but still slightly quaint future, apparently, because that was just the mood I was in tonight. Enjoy!
The door swung open and a person with a warm smile and their reddish hair put up in a neat bun stepped outside. Mel recognized xym from the ad as being Ms. Rose, the namesake of Ms. Rose’s Matchmaking, an establishment billed as the best in the region.
“Mx. Damon?” Ms. Rose said, and when Mel stood in recognition of her name, xe stepped forward and shook her hand. “Very nice to meet you. Why don’t we step into my office?”
The office felt more living-room than workspace, or would have if not for the sizable desk that Ms. Rose took a seat behind as xe gestured for Mel to sit on the other side. The carpet was lush, the throw-pillows on the reading chairs and the sofa by the door were cross-stitched and floral, and a small wheeled table stood by the desk with two thermoses, a sugar bowl and milk jug and a few delicate-looking cups. It smelled faintly of… sandalwood, was it? Mel thought so, at any rate. The windows were flanked by curtains that matched the pillows, tied back on either side of a set of gauzy white drapes that filtered the bright midday light that came in from outside, turning it from blinding to pleasantly cozy.
“Would you like a drink? Coffee, tea?”
“Oh, no thank you.” Mel shook her head. She’d had a latte on the way there. Maybe not a great idea since she’d been nervous about this since waking up that morning, though somehow she felt a lot less nervous now that she was finally there. Either way, more caffeine was probably ill-advised. “Thanks, though.”
Xe smiled. “So… why don’t you tell me a little bit about your situation?”
“Well… uh… we’ve been married about three years, almost. Things are going really well, I think. We’re very happy. I think we might really stay together forever. We’re talking about getting a dog.” She smiled, suddenly. How lovely to be able to say things like and feel you’re telling the truth. “It’s a time issue, really. I work a lot. I love my job. It’s really important to me. Wyn supports that completely but they just feel really differently about their job. They work part time, spend a lot of time exploring the city. Art shows, events, flea markets. Little excursions and picknicks, DIY-projects around the house, trying new hobbies. So many projects and ideas and honestly I just don’t quite have the time to keep up with it all. I think they’d really appreciate having company more, you know? Someone, or someones even, to come along with her a bit more often than I can.”
“Wonderful, I see,” Ms. Rose smiled. “Now, I already have some contenders in mind, but first let’s make sure we’re on the same page. Are you looking for any particular type of connection for them? Is it important, for example, that a match is looking for sex, or for romance? Or is it more about finding someone interested in the same types of activities?”
“Well, we do generally lean relationship anarchist,” Mel replied. “So finding an activity partner is certainly the main priority… but if I’m being honest, I think they’d prefer someone who at least wasn’t categorically against other things developing organically if that should happen to happen.”
“Great,” Ms. Rose said, and tapped some invisible button on the side of the desk. A panel in the center of the table slid aside, revealing a slick-looking touch screen underneath which displayed the agency’s logo. “Now,” xe continued, tapping the screen a few times in quick succession and bringing up what looked like a set of filters. “Let’s go over a few more practical details like age, location, anything else concrete like that, and then I’ll show you some suggested matches.”