I had the White Claw all shaken up and ready to go when Shari texted me, asking to talk. There wasn’t time to wonder what she wanted. I shot her a quick thumbs up and turned back to my webcam. I unhooked my itchy 44GG bra, adjusted the ring light, and switched on the livestream.
“Good news, darlings,” I said in a breathy voice. They couldn’t see my mouth. Or my face. My camera was cropped tight to my coppery breasts; the screen split into two spray-tanned columns of flesh.
“I have something special to share tonight. Something big, something you did. Something we’re doing together.”
I watched the CamQueenz livechat swell with eyeballs and question marks as I wedged the can of White Claw in-between my tits, sliding it in from underneath so my fans couldn’t make out what was happening. My breasts rearranged themselves, absorbing the can, the cold condensation pricking my ribcage.
“Your big girl is now in ninth place on CamQueenz. All thanks to you.” I pulled the tab on the White Claw can and braced myself. Hard seltzer sprayed all over my chest, bubbly streaks running down the screen. The chat was going crazy now, a river of melons and swimmer emojis flooding my screen. My digital tip jar buzzed with gifts. I lifted my breasts one at a time, winking my left nipple at the camera, then the right.
“Let’s ride these babies all the way to the top.”
An hour later, once I’d cleaned up the sticky pools of White Claw, I joined Shari and JJ on videochat. It wasn’t worth it to adjust our cameras in-between cam sessions, so we talked to each other’s bits. I saw Shari’s toes in one rectangle of my screen, done up in aqua and coral, like a mermaid’s rainbow. In another rectangle, JJ was rubbing coconut oil into the small of her back, her long wig swaying above her ass as she moved.
Cam work is lonely, and us parts girls had to stick together. Off-platform, we were in different cities, leading different lives. Shari had a day job in a biomedical lab. JJ brought cupcakes to her daughter’s classroom. I sweated in my basement apartment, scrounging money wherever I could. But on CamQueenz, we were single points of desire: Shari’s feet. My boobs. The curves of JJ’s back. Our live feeds were carefully curated, our videos tightly cropped. No backgrounds, no full bodies. We were solely and wholly our most bankable attributes.
“I’m proud of us,” JJ said. “Three parts girls in the top ten.”
Shari’s toes seemed to sigh.
“I don’t know how long I can hold rank,” she said. Shari had held a coveted top three CamQueenz slot for months, but in the past week, she’d slipped from second place to fifth. “I got another one-star review today.”
“Some dick monster blew up my live chat while I was foot-fucking a bowl of baby oil.”
“The same jerk who said my tits were fake?” I asked.
“Same one,” Shari said. Her toes clenched onscreen, as if she wished she could crack his balls between them.
His name was D!ckM0nster728. He’d hit all of us at least once with a shitty review. But he saved his worst ammunition for Shari, flaming her with one bad rating after another.
One star. Your eczema is showing.
One star. Long third toe = black-hearted ho.
One star. I can smell that shit from here.
“I don’t even get why they’re allowed to rate you multiple times,” JJ said. “It’s so unfair.”
“I think it’s for if you do different kinds of sessions,” I said. “Like, if you tried a frontal and wanted to get feedback.”
The bottom of JJ’s wig shook. “I guess so. Still.”
The truth was, it more than sucked. D!ckM0nster728 wasn’t one of Shari’s subscribers—just a garden-variety creep who decided to punch her in the algorithm, which hurt all over. The more low ratings you got, the fewer high rollers came around. Shari had already lost her $5000 weekly bonus for being in the top three. Now she was afraid she’d fall out of the top ten and the weekly $1000 that came with it. She couldn’t afford to lose that.
None of us could. And if he’d done it to Shari, he could do it to any of us.
“I never had eczema in my life,” Shari said. “What a scumbag.”
“What should we do?” JJ asked.
None of us had any good ideas. We had the guy’s username, but we didn’t have any way to identify him. He wasn’t a subscriber to any of our feeds. We couldn’t even direct message him unless he messaged us first. Last year, the Romanian mob had run some kind of scam, flooding the site with girls offering live in-person gang bangs in exchange for payments on the app. CamQueenz shut them down and issued a press release saying their platform was for female empowerment, not prostitution. They locked down messaging. Anonymized all new accounts. And ratcheted their take of our earnings up to thirty-four percent for all their hard work to keep us safe.
The upshot was we had less money, and no way to find D!ckM0nster728.
“What does he like?” I asked.
“Not my feet,” Shari responded.
We did a hunt across the top fifty girls on the site, scanning for others he’d reviewed. There wasn’t a discernible pattern. He gave out bad comments like poisoned candy across different fetishes on the site.
“Let me do some more digging,” I said. “I’ve got another live show in five, and then I was going to shut down for the night. I’ll go further down the list, see if I can find any kind of pattern.”
“Thank you,” Shari said. “Sisters for life.”
“Sisters for life,” I repeated.
I spent the next twenty minutes with my breasts propped up on the kitchen counter, dropping produce down my cleavage. Cucumbers were good, of course, but my subscribers liked it all. Carrots. Shredded lettuce. For my big finale, I slid a carton of blueberries down there, the crevasse between my breasts swallowing each one with a smooshy pop. It was a beast to clean up, but the tips were phenomenal.
I’d first become aware of my breasts as an entity outside myself when I was nine. They puffed up unbidden, rising like wet rice against my ribcage. I smothered them in sweatshirts, tried to ignore them. But they kept growing—beastly, foreign things—outside of me, beyond me, filling the eyes and cruel mouths of men. Everyone wanted them except for me. They embarrassed me out of computer club, bounced me off the middle school track team. I tried sleeping on my stomach to squash them, wrapped gauze around my ribcage to contain them. I begged my mom for a reduction, but she told me it wasn’t natural. And besides, it wasn’t like we could afford it.
$8,093. That’s the average cost of a breast reduction surgery. Then you have to add in the cost of recovery, plus, for someone like me, retraining. Finding a job that doesn’t rely on my tits. I figure $50,000 should cover it. I’ve been saving up, one sweaty blueberry at a time. Only $12,941 left to go.
“Okay, here’s what I found.” I was fully clothed this morning, but my camera was still in place, fish-eyeing the faded letters stretched across the front of my sweatshirt. “Our dick monster is a clean freak.”
JJ frowned. She was facing her camera, a granny shawl draped around her bare shoulders. Her eyes were unfocused, her body a blur of browns and grays on my screen. As if this was her shadow side, the part of her that usually lay sleeping. “Like, antiseptic wipes?”
“Simpler than that,” I said. “Baths.”
“Baths.” Shari was bent down over her toes, filing a tiny speck of nothing off a cuticle edge. I could see brown hair, flashes of the broken-out forehead, a locket swinging in and out of the frame.
My breasts nodded. “He gives four stars anytime a girl takes a bath. Five if she uses a lot of soap. I even saw one he subscribed to where she popped the bar into her mouth for a minute.”
One of Shari’s bleary eyes filled her screen. “You serious?”
“I did that once,” JJ said. She looked up and to the left, her eyes vague, as if the memory was shelved somewhere way off-camera. “When I was still doing face. It was slippery and sharp. Like sucking on a metal cloud.”
I was grateful my eye-rolling wasn’t captured on camera. “Well, that’s what he’s into,” I said.
“What should we…?” Shari asked.
“We need a targeted account,” I said. “To reel him in.”
“But we already have accounts,” Shari said. Her face was out of view again, her nail-bitten fingers rubbing lotion into her manicured toes. “Reputations. Or what’s left of them.”
“That’s the beauty of it. Our viewers only know one part of us. No one knows what JJ’s stomach looks like. Or your tits.”
“Or your feet.”
I saw the haze lift from JJ’s face.
“We could make a new account,” she said. Her voice sounded confident now, almost triumphant. “With the parts we don’t use. No one would know it was one of us.”
“That’s it!” I dipped my head down to meet my camera, flashing JJ a grateful smile. Then, I straightened up, my breasts replacing my face. “I’d do it. But I don’t have a bathtub.”
“Me neither,” JJ said. She scrunched up her forehead into a question mark. “Maybe he’d be into the sink?”
“I have a bathtub,” Shari said.
I nodded. I’d seen it once in the video that launched Shari into the coveted top five on the platform. It was a crossover vid, mouth and feet, the kind that tugged men towards fetish for the first time. Her feet were floating above the surface of the bathwater, toes covered in bubbles, her mouth stained pink and blowing sudsy fluff into the air from the edge of the frame. It was a good trick, used sparingly. All us parts girls did it. Maybe in one post out of twenty, you show another bit of yourself. Shari’s raspberry lips. My fingernails, long and sharp, pricking morse code into my breasts. JJ even had a way of flashing a ghost of a smile from behind, the kind you swore was there even if you couldn’t pull the screenshots to prove it. A tiny taste of the fact that the part your fans worshipped was part of another, bigger, unknowable mystery. That’s the shit that got dudes to click subscribe.
“What’s your best feature?” I asked. “Besides your feet.”
Shari spread her toes wide. “Maybe my shoulders?” she said. “Or my thighs?”
“Thighs are easier to soap. And I think he might have a thing for knees.”
“Are you sure we can…” JJ’s voice had gone wispy again. She didn’t sound sure about much, including how to finish her question.
“There’s a way to create an account without them tracing it back to us,” I said. “I had to do it once. To deal with a guy. A problem.”
This, JJ seemed to understand. We’d all had those problems.
“If I’m gonna be the one doing this, in my bathtub, can I get the referral bounty?”
I looked at Shari’s feet and shook my head. “Sorry. No bounties. We can’t have them tracing the fake back to us. It has to be a totally fresh account.”
Her feet looked disappointed.
“But you can have any money the account collects before we get rid of it,” I improvised. “You’ll be doing the work, right? Seems only fair.”
She waggled her toes at that.
Two days later, I’d set up a brand-new account for Anastasia Leau, aka HubbaRubDub. It wasn’t the sexiest username, but it was available, and it got the theme across. I made it at the library across town, airbrushing a picture of some rando’s knees poking out of a foamy bath as a profile pic.
Shari bought some soap and tested the lather, tint, and best angles for the candlelight. You gotta have candles in a bath cam session. She figured out a way to put her feet up and arch her pelvis so her thighs rose slowly out of the bath, bubbles kissing the sides of her legs, her cooch never quite hitting the camera view. We ran it in slo-mo with some trance-y music. That shit was hypnotic. Anastasia’s first day on the platform, with that one five-second looping video, she cleared her way into the top 500. But no D!ckM0nster728. Not yet.
The second day, we posted a video of her gently stroking a line of foam down her thigh with a vibrator. 98 likes. No D!ckM0nster728.
Then another one of her kicking her legs out of the water, one after another, like a Rockette trapped in a car wash. No dice.
The third day, she went live. A tricky thing to do—Shari had to be vigilant to ensure no identifying features (toes, ankles, voice) popped into the feed—but she was getting fed up. She’d gotten another one-star from D!ckM0nster728 on her primary account that dropped her down to 8th place. JJ was 6th. I was 9th. We all knew how nerve-racking it was to be on the bubble like that.
For thirty-seven minutes, Anastasia Leau rubbed soap into her thighs. That’s it. She started by ripping the paper off the bar of soap. In a fake, feathery voice, she vowed that she wouldn’t stop the live feed until the bar was gone. Every few minutes, she’d hold the bar up to the camera, so you could see the logo dissolving away, the mound of shea butter transforming into a glistening wafer.
At minute twenty-two, D!ckM0nster728 tuned in.
“Yes!” JJ and I were on FaceTime, watching the whole thing go down. Three minutes after he’d logged on, the asshole was still watching the feed. He sent a heart, then a dollar. Then ten. Shari’s work was paying off.
“I’ll DM him,” JJ said. She was logged in as Anastasia, using the multi-device app many of us used to juggle a cam session and private chats at the same time. We’d agreed that Shari should keep one hand off-camera as much as possible, in case JJ had the chance to chat. JJ turned her camera toward her computer so I could follow along.
Hey baby… Thank u for helping me stay clean.
R u a dirty girl?
Wanna hear about it?
Subscribe & I’ll tell you everything, baby
JJ and I watched her screen, waiting for him to respond. On my phone, Shari’s left hand was tracing hypnotic white circles around a kneecap.
I saw the notification light up before I heard JJ’s voice. New subscriber alert. We were in.
I first learned about breast reduction surgery when I was thirteen. It was August, and I was at the pool behind our apartment building. It was so hot the moldy oranges melted to the concrete where the birds had flung them down from the trees. A woman was floating in the water, older than me, skinny, her striped bikini swallowed up in a raft shaped like a slice of pizza. I watched her tumble off the side, paddle to the edge, and lift herself out of the pool. Her breasts stayed clamped to her ribcage, all her body parts moving upwards together, like they all belonged to her.
She caught me staring.
“I… I wish I could wear a suit like that,” I mumbled. I was wearing an old muscle tank my dad had left behind, stretched over three layers of sports bra, and a scratchy pair of black bottoms.
The woman pulled a pair of sunglasses out of nowhere. She squinted at me from her lawn chair, decided I was pathetic, and tossed me a bone. “You have a beautiful figure. You’ll grow into it.”
“I don’t want to grow into it.” At thirteen, I’d already hit my quota of hooting, cars following me, lurching grabs. Men who seemed annoyed there was a head and a neck attached to my breasts. “I wish I could grow out of it.”
She took a step closer to me and nodded. “I had a cousin who did that. She was like a DDD. It gave her back issues. So, she—” The woman reached out a finger, floating between us in the heat, slicing the air horizontally in front of my tank top. I watched her finger, imagining it sharp, ice-cold, shearing off the bottom half of my chest.
The woman stepped back. Shrugged. “She’s a C cup now.”
Later that night, once I’d wrestled off all three sports bras, I laid on my back on my bed, lifting my breasts away from my ribcage and up towards my shoulders. I ran a finger across the space beneath, the clammy, pimpled skin that spent all day squeezed into darkness and sweat. I was looking for the stitching, the line she’d traced out there, the seam that would let them out. I couldn’t find it. But a surgeon could. His instruments would be, precise, metal. He could press a hair-thin needle to my skin and unzip me. I could find out who was under there. I just needed someone to pull the boulders from my path.
Once we were in, the finesse work began. Shari kept one hand working the bar of soap while I helped JJ extract information from D!ckM0nster728 over chat, using tricks, I’d learned from a short-lived phone banking gig for a supplements company. You flatter them, make some idiotic guesses about their hometown and favorite pet, get them to correct you. Men always get off on correcting you. Once JJ had his zip code, his birth year, and enough other information to make a decent attempt at his password, she begged off the chat. Told him she had to go towel down and think of him. Maybe take another shower. She was such a dirty girl.
When JJ logged off, we all met again on FaceTime. Shari was still in her bathroom, sitting on the toilet in a robe, her pimpled forehead shining in the bad fluorescent light. But she was pumped. You could tell. She must have already checked the account, seen the tips and the chat.
“You were amazing,” I said to Shari. On my second screen, I was typing fast, riding the adrenaline, using the information JJ had extracted to break into the dick monster’s account.
“JJ was amazing,” Shari responded. “I saw what you did with that chat.”
“Thanks, but that was all C,” JJ said. Her daughter squirmed up into her lap. I watched JJ’s fingers root through the girl’s hair, realigning the tiny braids with deft yanks and twists. “She told me what to write. You’re good at this, C.”
I felt her words burrow under my chest, warming whatever part of me might hide out in the dark down there.
“I got in!” I switched to a Serbian VPN server and logged in as D!ckM0nster728. My fingers were flying over the keyboard now, erasing his bad reviews, dropping another $100 tip into Anastasia Leau’s account. Then, I uploaded the text we’d prepped into the chatbox, some bullshit about recruiting Anastasia to join a prostitution ring run by a rival cam platform.
“Oh, my virgin stars,” JJ sang out in a giggly falsetto. She screenshotted the incriminating messages from Anastasia’s account and dropped them in an email to the 24/7 performer safety mailbox they set up after the Romanian mob bust.
“See you in hell, dick monster,” I said.
JJ and her daughter were both looking at me now, eyes shining. “You did it.”
“We did it together,” I said.
“This calls for a toast.” Shari bent down and came back up with a Miller Light.
“Sisters for life,” Shari said.
“Sisters for life!” JJ’s daughter yelled.
I woke up the next morning to a missed call from Shari. Four of them, once I was with it enough to examine my phone.
Before calling her back, I hopped onto a Swedish server and logged onto the platform to check on our newest friend. Or rather, I tried to. D!ckM0nster728’s account had been shut down. There was no button to press to tell his side of the story. He couldn’t contest the ban. He was deleted. Permanently. All his reviews had vanished, his one- and two-star ratings returned to the great celestial cesspool in the sky. We’d gotten exactly what we wanted.
Was that why Shari was calling me? For a victory lap?
When she called the fifth time, I picked up.
“Finally,” Shari said.
“What’s up?” I asked.
“I tried to log in as Anastasia,” Shari said. “On my way to work. I wanted to see if any more tips had come in from the live show.”
“And?” I supposed she deserved the cash. She was the one out a bar of soap.
“Anastasia’s account has been suspended,” Shari said.
“No,” she said. “It’s just gone.”
“Huh.” That wasn’t part of our plan. Not that it was bad, per se. It might even be a good thing. No reason to hold onto a dummy account once it had done its dirty work. But it was clear Shari wasn’t finished.
“Then I logged in as myself,” she said. “I wanted to see if us removing his bad reviews had given me any boost in the rankings. That’s when I saw it.”
“It happened to JJ too.”
“Shari, what are you talking about?”
“Our accounts. Our top ten, blood-sweat-and-cum, bring-home-the-bacon accounts. They’re suspended too.”
I logged in as myself, just to be sure. My account looked fine. Better than fine. With Shari and JJ off the site, I’d jumped up from ninth to sixth. Only three spots away from a $5,000 bonus. A firework of excitement shot off in my head. I smothered it before I spoke.
“My account looks normal,” I said.
“Thank God. But that’s weird, right? I mean, you were the one who created Anastasia,” Shari said.
True. But I did it at the public library, on an incognito web browser that got scrubbed every twenty-four hours by those privacy-loving librarians. And when we got the dick monster’s password, and I logged in as him to send that damning direct message, I used a foreign server to mask my IP address. Heck, I used a VPN for everything I did on the platform with my account. With any account. No sense in being a parts girl if my digital fingerprints were hanging out there for anyone to see.
“Shari,” I said. “When you were doing the live show as Anastasia, you did it on a masked IP address, right?”
“What do you mean?”
“A VPN? Or a Tor server? Something so it can’t get traced back to your computer?”
There was a long pause on the other end of the line.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Shari said. Her voice was flat and thin, like the juice had been squeezed out of it.
“I thought since you’re a scientist and all, you’d know to be careful…”
“I’m a lab technician,” Shari said. “I clean test tubes. I’m a glorified dishwasher.”
I shook my head. JJ probably knew even less about online privacy.
“I’m sorry, Shari. But this has got to be temporary. You never logged in as the dick monster. The worst they can get you on is making one video on a fresh cam account. And all JJ did was message the guy and report him for wrongdoing. They’ve got to reinstate you.”
“They better. My lab job pays minimum wage. I can’t make rent if I don’t cam.”
I hesitated. I could hear the stress in Shari’s voice, but I wasn’t sure how to respond. I’d never had close friends as a teenager. My breasts robbed me even of female intimacy, raising a mountain range of suspicion between other girls and me. Their parents thought I was trouble. Their boyfriends hoped it was true. So, this feeling I had—a thin, curling ribbon of responsibility and care—was unfamiliar.
“Let me see what I can do.”
I switched servers again and made a fresh, anonymous email address. I used it to write a long letter to the 24/7 platform security officer, explaining the situation and what had happened to JJ and Shari. Yes, catfishing is against site rules, but they had done it in the service of a greater good: protecting the platform’s integrity. They were innocent cam girls, just trying to help. They had screenshots of everything and would be happy to talk with the relevant authorities about the prostitution recruiter they’d snagged in their net.
It didn’t seem productive to name myself in the message, so I just signed it “A concerned friend.”
Over the next few weeks, Shari and JJ waited. My breasts worked overtime. Being the only parts girl in the top ten got me more attention than ever. I made a trampoline video—always a crowd-pleaser, always a back-breaker—and moved up another rank to fifth place. The concern I’d felt for Shari and JJ started to crumble. We texted less. I worked more, made new friends. I was charging toward my dream.
I edited the trampoline video in slo-mo and thought about what it would feel like when my breasts got erased. I made a copy of the video and used a photo-modifier app to blur them away, drawing hypnotic circles with my mouse over the galloping pixels until my chest was smooth as a beach after a sandstorm. My distorted torso lurched across the screen, a blank question mark where my breasts had been. I didn’t have a vision for the shape or size I wanted to replace them. Just the empty canvas, the uncertain surface, the uncovering of whatever new version of myself might emerge.
When I was on the verge of moving on, the parts girls came back. It took twenty-two days for the platform to make their ruling. Shari and JJ’s accounts were reinstated, but they didn’t get to bring their old rankings back with them. Some of their five-star reviews had been flagged for suspicious activity, and dozens of subscribers had canceled in their weeks of darkness. Fickle assholes.
I got a text from Shari that same day asking to meet. I told myself I didn’t have to feel guilty, that I didn’t even have to show up for the videochat. But I didn’t want distrust to rise between us. We’d been sisters, after all.
I kept my camera in position so they wouldn’t see the mottled discomfort on my face.
“How’d it go?” I rubbed bronzer into my breasts as we talked, keeping my eyes away from their overworked parts onscreen, watching my chest turn to gold.
“Shitty,” Shari said. “I forgot what it’s like down in the wasteland, all the gimmicks you have to pull to get attention.”
“I’m wiped,” JJ added. A snake I’d never seen before was writhing around her back. “I had to borrow my kid’s class pet to drum up some ratings.”
I felt a sudden, alien impulse, a tug at that fraying ribbon of friendship. I leaned down, pulling my face into camera view.
“I want to help you out.”
I didn’t know what I was saying, but I kept saying it. “I want to give you my top ten bonus for the past week. $500 for each of you.”
Shari’s toes went stiff. “You don’t have to do that. You need that money for your surgery.”
JJ carefully removed the snake from around her neck and craned around to look into her camera. “Shari’s right. It could have happened to any of us.”
“Exactly,” I said. Both women were staring at me now, flooding me with gratitude. There was nothing but trust in their dumb, soft eyes. “We’re the parts girls. Sisters. It’s the least I can do.”
After I wired them each $500, I headed back over to the library to log in again. Feeling paranoid, I guess. I pulled up my master planning spreadsheet, the one I used to track all the fake accounts I’d created. It calmed me, looking at the long list of names. My own little imaginary army of junk monkeys and cum demons. Parts of myself no one would ever trace back to me.
I took one last appreciative look at D!ckM0nster728 and considered the damage he’d done to my competition. He’d gotten me two notches closer to the top three. Two notches closer to the money I need to get the monsters off my chest. I entered the keystrokes to wipe his existence from my spreadsheet, from CamQueenz history, from every slice of the internet he’d dirtied. I watched that slice of myself disappear and felt the weight of it lift from my body. I tried not to wonder about the rotted edge it left behind.
I spent another hour working at the library. Writing reviews, rating vids. I was careful to wipe everything clean before I left. When I got home, I logged into the platform as myself. I had a string of private chats waiting for me from my newest set of sisters, the frontals, two of whom were in the top three.
“Hey, have any of you had any trouble with a dude called Cum2Pap@@?”
“That ratfucker hit me last week.”
“Wanna jump on video and talk about it?”
“Now’s good,” I responded. I positioned my camera carefully—all breast, no neck—ensuring my smile would be far out of view. “Let’s find a way to take him down.”