Their eyes were filled with amazement. Was this a sick joke? What could have made them so naive?
Observing him flirting with another woman they did not know, they laughed.
“I’m killing him! “Clarissa shouted. She was pulled to the side by her friend. Other patrons were able to see them. It wasn’t too late to catch them.
Penelope Dickens lived in Los Angeles, California, and was a cheerful, kind woman. As an experienced businesswoman in her thirties, she was single.
She had a strong financial foundation, but she was still missing something in her life, a partner.
Trying online dating for the first time, she downloaded “Hinged” on her phone.
A Second Chance
Penny was quite embarrassed to be using a dating app for the first time.
It took her a while to get used to it, and she was amused at the attention she was receiving. Joshua Markham was the man she matched with soon after.
A few dates were scheduled, and they hit it off right away. In addition to being charming and funny, he seemed to be a genuine person. A second chance at love excited Penny.
The honeymoon phase was in full swing for Penny and Joshua. Their love was undeniable.
However, after a few weeks of dating, things began to get weird. As good as it sounded, she knew it couldn’t be true.
It was common for Joshua to disappear for long stretches of time and then have strange excuses for his whereabouts. Something felt off to Penny.
A Terrible Discovery
She couldn’t help but be curious. Her curiosity led her to follow him one day. Due to a gym workout, he could not meet up with her. Penny said, “I wasn’t born yesterday.”.
In shock, she discovered he was in the mall. A woman she knew from Pilates class named Jennifer was on a date with him.
She was furious but confronted Jennifer, 29.
Just like her, Jennifer was shocked as well. Both of them realized Joshua was meeting multiple women using the dating app at once.
In order to catch him out, they decided to catch him on camera.
Using his schedule as a guide, they devised a plan. He was a fraud, and they determined to expose him for what he was. How well would their plan work?
Joshua was stalked by them together, and a shocking truth was revealed. After Penny and Jennifer were informed that he was out of town on business, they found him in a Chinese restaurant downtown with someone else.
His stooping so low appalled them. Another woman named Clarissa was also dating him. A smile spread across their faces as they held hands.
As a means of protecting Clarissa, they decided to tell her the truth. It’s wrong to disrespect another woman in this way.
After being shocked by Joshua’s actions, Clarissa, 30, teamed up with Penny and Jennifer to defeat him. One night, they decided to confront him when he was out with another woman.
As they checked his online profile, they found nothing to indicate that he had been active, but he had been smart enough not to leave any clues.
As much as possible, he hooked up with women online through serial dating.
A Cheap Man
During the wait outside the restaurant, the woman shared her experiences with Joshua, and they were all similar.
Splitting the bill was always his practice. Girls would sometimes pay for him at the movies, and he would never return the money.
There was never a wallet in his pocket, and he seemed cheap. His excuses always revolved around how he wasn’t a material person and would not buy them expensive gifts.
They Caught Him
Joshua sat down at a corner table to their surprise. They caught him dating a fourth woman.
Upon confronting him, Clarissa was shocked to discover the woman he was with was somebody she knew! “Oh, my word! I can’t believe my eyes! Oh, he’s good, I’ll give him that,” she scoffed.
In his fear, Joshua cried out, “Ladies, please…” Penny gave him a mean look and he sprinted away, knowing his luck had run out. As a result of realizing they had been manipulated by him, the women decided to stop putting up with his tricks.
Taking A Stand
They reported him to the dating app, and he was banned from using it. They also warned other women about him, so they wouldn’t fall for his lies. But would that be enough? He could be anywhere.
Clarissa and the fourth woman were shocked that they had both been fooled by the same man.
She was embarrassed and didn’t know how she would ever live it down. “How could you?” Clarissa wept to her.
I’m Human Too
The fourth woman was hurt by Clarissa’s accusations. Why was she being so mean when they had all been a victim of the same crime? She ran away crying although the other girls tried to stop her. She didn’t look back.
Penny, Jennifer, and Clarissa, all became friends through their shared experiences. They all had each other’s backs and made a pact to never let a man like Joshua come between them again.
They had learned their lesson the hard way.
It’s Not Easy
Penny even started dating again, but this time, she was more cautious.
She made sure to take things slow and get to know the person before fully investing in the relationship.
Even though Joshua hadn’t been caught yet, they were now all the wiser. The only problem was the rift between Clarissa and her family member. Clarissa didn’t agree with what her ‘so-called’ family did.
Penny called a meeting with all four girls and tried for the sisters to amend. The fourth woman Sarah was Clarissa’s 42-year-old, elder married sister. She and her husband were having problems which is why she used the online app.
She didn’t think her prude sister Clarissa of all people, would find out. She was quite confused and needed time to think.
The sisters tried to work out their issues. Penny realized that even though things didn’t work out with Joshua, she had gained something much more valuable- the friendship and support of three amazing women.
Together, they formed an unbreakable sisterhood. They laughed, cried, and supported each other through thick and thin. Clarissa and Sarah agreed to disagree, they were sisters.
The four women were now survivors and determined to live full, happy lives. And as for Joshua, he was just a distant memory- a lesson learned and a mistake never to be repeated. But Penny was still keeping her ears open for signs of his whereabouts.
Disclaimer: To protect the privacy of those depicted, some names, locations, and identifying characteristics have been changed and are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblances to actual events, places, or persons, living or dead, are entirely coincidental.