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Scents of Sex

The Nose's Carnal Nature

By Alex C-BPublished 6 years ago 10 min read
Icon credit: Oksana Latysheva

Scents seduce the senses. The human nose is a mighty organ equipped with four hundred sensors designed to detect one trillion different smells, about one hundred million times more than previously believed according to a study published in the prestigious journal Science.

Now, this sense is a powerful evolutionary tool that helped the species to survive the wild eons ago. The nose serves a wide range of functions ranging from finding food to avoiding dangers and the most important, reproduction.

Smells have enchanting properties that orchestrate life. Think of your partner's aromas as you kiss their neck and lips or the sex air when you walk back into the room after a long bout of passion.

This story explores the carnal nature of scents through the filthy eyes of a 21st-century human body.

Disclaimer: Mature content. The characters in this piece may, or may not have existed. Reader discretion is advised.

The Chase

Icon by Rohit MS

Hunger strikes. I scan the fridge to find food and appease this primitive urge. My stomach growls and the only thing left is a hidden tupperware holding an unknown meal made who knows when, so I pick it up to look inside. A rancid odour escapes from the open dish and burns up my nervous system. My throat curls as both arms recoil and send the macaroni and ex-cheese splashing onto the floor.


My disgust is an old survival device coded to protect me from the mycotoxins in the fresh mould sprinkled all over the food. One of my ancestors may have died or gotten ill from eating the expired food way back, and the shock fused to my DNA as a memory.

The affinity of scents to rewire the brain is a gift of nature. These olfactory radars relay odour data to various parts of the brain, which orchestrate an instant physiological response, a rapid interaction, unlike any other human sense.

Author Patrick Süskind magnified this powerful evolutionary tool in his dark novel Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. The main character Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is a troubled misfit of the 18th-century French society whose extraordinary sharp nose sends into a murder frenzy to preserve the sweet fragrances of the teenage girls he meets.

My incredible alarm system left a terrible mess on my floor today, however. What went through my head? I knew the dish was three weeks old, yet still felt compelled to have a whiff. I had it coming, just like that monkey who smells its fingers after a thorough ass scratch session, then faints.

The splatter makes me gag a few times as I pick it up. My stomach warns me it's well prepared to expel everything, just in case. I step outside to carry the nuclear-waste into the outdoor bin.

The pungent stench fades, at last. I regain my spirits and notice an absolute masterpiece before my eyes. The sky is bright blue, not a cloud in sight. New green grass replaced the snow. Summer's fresh fragrance animates my body with joy.

A strong drive programmed eons ago vibrates within me to announce that mating season just started. Skirts, dresses, and skin flooded the city, rejuvenated from a hibernation slumber. People are happy and active, even those who look out of shape.

My morning wood woke me up stiff, and I feel compelled to honour the call. Tourists are everywhere when the hot season comes around, so the odds of stumbling on somebody seeking to make memories and have a taste of the local culture at the same time are high.

The digital revolution changed human copulation for the better and the worst. Access to sex is now easier than ever before in the history of the species thanks to dating app such as Tinder and Bumble, while some males opt for celibacy, drained of their libido from online porn addiction.

I log into my account and promptly swipe through faces. Dopamine rushes through my blood. The rule tonight is no locals, so my eyes scan for foreign flag emoticons amongst the multiple profiles, women of all styles and colours. Fortune matches me to two candidates, one from France and the other from Brazil.

The chase is on. I swing with the French first and miss hard, crickets. The Brazilian seems keener. She engages with my witty opener and plays along, even cracks a few jokes in broken English. Her pictures are from all over the world, a real globetrotter.

Izabel from Sao Paulo was in the city with her friend for one last night. Las Meninas arrived earlier this week and wanted local dates for an intimate tour as the grand finale to a long vacation.

"Bring a friend."

My buddy Carl is a reliable wingman for these kinds of situations. He can entertain a conversation with anybody, a brilliant team player to the bone. His picture receives the approval, and we agree to meet at the Starbucks near their Airbnb in the hip part of town, or The Tourist Trap as the locals coin it.

The neighbourhood was an active arm of the industrial revolution three hundred years ago. The big corporations of the era produced every single train track of the first cross-country railroad just a few blocks away from the coffee shop, and all supplies used to build the nation shipped from the local train station now turned into a shopping mall.

This once international hub of innovation got wiped clean by developers and replaced with human beehives for artists and young professionals, all of its history compressed into an underfunded small museum, like the old Coliseum falling apart in the middle of Rome, drowned in a sea of fast food joints or other modern economic giants and high-end furniture shops.

The main street had every level of drinking sector, from bars to pubs and high-end clubs. Organized crime ran the show so you could easily score any narcotic in the world or engage in some illicit activity. Drugs found you in this party artery.

The View

Icon by Eric Jensen

Carl meets me in front of the Starbucks. The two girls are waiting inside, sipping espressos at the bar with their luscious red lips and vivid summer dresses.

Damn, these girls know how to drink coffee.

I speak first.

"Izabel! Como você está?"

Thank you Google Translate.

She laughs, " Eu estou bem! You know Portuguese?"

The initial tension diffuses. I kiss Izabel's bronze cheek, who then leans in to reciprocate. An aroma of vanilla and honey caresses my nose as she drifts away. The orgy of scents strikes my nervous system like a lightning bolt. My pupils dilate and let in more light to accelerate my heart rate. Her dark eyes connect with mine.

"Lovely to meet you, Izabel "

We both smile. She introduces her friend Helena to Carl who handles the greet like a champion. First impressions lock within four seconds and tend to linger afterward. An uphill battle awaits anyone who messes up this short window. So far so good.

Coarse dark roast grinding behind the counter fills the atmosphere with an omnipresent coffee scent, but my date's divine fragrance charms my senses. The urge to shove my nose into that neck and inhale every molecule of scent rages within my gut. I order two espressos to curb the edge and level with the girls.

The girls want to eat at a place featured in Lonely Planet, a typical traveller trap serving overpriced cosmopolitan dishes and terrible service. A forty minute wait get squished like sardines between tables for subpar food would not be conducive to anybody's libido.

These places have the same menu everywhere in the world, whether you are in New-York or Dubai, Rome, even the one main dirt strip on a remote Indonesian island called Gili Trawangan.

I suggest a better spot for local cuisine with an unobstructed view of the city, twenty-minutes away by walk from the tourist circus.

"Okay, Mr. Guide "

Our foursome dives deeper into the urban landscape. The trek is a roller coaster of scents, urine whiffs sneaking out of every alleyway we passed, and bakers blowing their kitchen fans into the streets lure hungry customers. A gust of wind carries Izabel's perfume to my nose for a brief moment of bliss.

The city is wide awake tonight. Everybody is doing their thing. Bright lights flash. Artists are shooting gin outside the corner cafe. Drunken heirs topple to the closest supper club right next to an Irish pub full of students, hustlers and hookers mingle on the sidewalk with drunks from every stratum of society. We walk by a gang of clenched-jaw ravers floating to the sounds of a street musician's accordion, either coming out of last night's gig or waiting for the next one to start, it's impossible to tell.

The girls love the action, four eyes locked to the show as their brains process the new data and compare it to back home. I envy them. No drug tonight could match the gripping high of traveling in a new country. This uneasy awe alters your life perspective for the better.

The Dance

Icon by Gan Khoor Lay

Dinner goes well. The language barrier is hard to miss, so we keep chats simple and speak mostly with our eyes and hands. They teach us a few Portuguese dirty words, laugh at our pronunciation, then we do the same. The air is thick with maple fumes, a byproduct of the chef's signature glaze. We split a bottle of red wine.

"So, what do you girls want to do tonight? "

They look at each other, "Dance!"

"What kind of music?"

Izabel smiles as her eyes seduce me again.

"Hip-hop, of course. "

"I know an excellent spot. "

My DJ friend Marvin spins at one of the mob-owned clubs on the tourist strip every Friday night. This guy was a real sensual maestro who always mixed the right ratio of old and new songs. The place is sure to be packed because his set sent everyone grinding on the dance floor, entranced by the beats. No other establishment in the city had such carnal energy, A perfect joint to bring a date who specifically told you she wants to dance.

The behemoth gatekeeper hired to keep trouble out of the club lets us skip the long line when I tell him we're on Marvin's list. Fu-gee-la by the Fugees blast my ear-drums as we enter. We head to the bar and order shots of Patrone coffee. The tequila nectar overpowers my senses.

We hit the dance floor and begin one of the most ancient mating rituals of the animal kingdom. The survival of the species once depended on this rhythmic display of sexual energies, and tonight was no different. My performance in this group-dance would define my chances of copulation with this particular mate.

You have to relax and let your hips groove to the beat, either with the bass or the drumline. P.Diddy's "I need a girl (part 2)" sets the tone, followed by Drake's "Once Dance." The crowd goes wild. I get closer to Izabel, one song at a time.

She grabs my hands and locks them on her hips when Marvin spins The Weekend's "Often," our souls fuse by heat. Her fragrance and the melody have me caught in a trance. I want to kiss her lips immediately, but hold back.

Not yet.

The music beats through my veins and drains a pint of blood from my brain into my loins. An electric shock flows down my spine as I lose myself to the sensorial insanity.

Izabel feels my pants tighten and draws me in closer, her back against me as our hips shift in unity along the melody. I kiss her neck at last, pure sweetness. Dr. Dre's remix of "Miss You" by the Rolling Stones has the floor in upheaval.

The fantasy ends in a heartbeat when my date gets pulled away by her friend, who whispers in her ear then storms off. Izabel gives me an "I have no choice" look full of disappointment and follows Helena. I get why she wouldn't want to leave her friend alone in a foreign city, but can't help to feel bitter.

I find Carl, whose tongue is busy inspecting another girl's tonsils.

Cockblocked by my wingman. Alcohol, you bitch.

"Fuck, Carl. You had one job. Greedy Bastard."

He shrugs his shoulders. These plays happen in the game and are out of your power. Still, no amount of stoicism could diffuse the tension. My cell phone is dead. I have no idea what time it is or how much I had to drink. Izabel is long gone, along with my will to fornicate.

The Red Notification

Icon by Joe Harrison

My balls ache with blues. I walk back home with my tail between my legs and the smell of tequila on my breath. My laptop greets me with open arms.

It looks like it's you and me tonight, Pornhub.

A red Instagram notification lights up my charging cell phone right as I start browsing the front page, it's a direct message from Izabel.

"Hey you, my friend is safe now. Can we finish the dance? "

"I am not at the club anymore. "

"In your bed, stupid! "

Yes, oh yes.

I send her my address. She Übers down, fifteen minutes later. The doorbell rings. The gorgeous Brazilian goddess wearing sweatpants and a hoodie walks into my home.

"Where were we?"

She jumps into my arms the moment the door closes behind her. We kiss. Her aroma intensified now that she wasn't wearing as much make-up. She wore nothing underneath her clothes. Her wet lips smell divine. We lay naked in my bed exploring each other's bodies. Her skin is soft, pressed hard against mine. Our sexes connect, unable to hold back any longer.

I climax after a few strokes.

What did you expect? The night had been one huge tease, but I am determined to make the pleasure last. I keep her distracted with my mouth and fingers until my heart pumps enough blood to fill my loins again.

Ready to go.

The horizontal dance lasts longer the second time. There is no music, only a silent room filled with moaning. Our bodies take turns on top of each other, leading the dance one thrust at a time. Izabel finally gives in and orgasms under me. We both fall asleep. Her alarm clock wakes me up the early the next morning. She gives me one last passionate kiss and leaves forever.

Her vibes fade throughout the day, like a dream from your memory the morning after. My room has a comforting sex smell. I shove my head in the pillow she slept on and breathe. The few fragments of scent left on the tissue flash the entire night before my eyes.

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About the Creator

Alex C-B

Pieces of myself through facts and fiction - A fallible human of the digital era. I bought the ticket, missed the ride, then tripped down the rabbit hole and woke up stranded with you in this strange matrix.

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