The March of the Machine storyline is in progress, and the first few chapters promise there may be some Developments for everyone’s favorite exes. Expect me to check in soon with some BIG FEELINGS and also to bemoan how irrelevant they’ve made my in-progress fanfic, still posting every Tuesday. But here’s a piece to tide y’all over while I process my emotions.

Last year, Wizards celebrated Pride with the release of “Notes From A Stranger” by Alison Lührs, a story whose praises I’ve sung before. “Notes” is deeply romantic, but it recreates, within the world of Magic, something that is incredibly unromantic in our world: online dating.

If only sliding into a cutie’s DMs always led to something as wonderful as Huatli’s first date with Saheeli. In the real world, online dating is frequently frustrating and depressing, and you’re likely to kiss a lot of Croaking Counterparts before you find your True Love’s Kiss. But what if online dating didn’t have to be like that? What if online dating had a little more…Magic?

A woman in a white gown kissing a man turned to stone, releasing him from the spell, from the card True Love’s Kiss.

Today we’re going to try what may be a new feature for future editions of Prismatic Vista, which I’m calling Alluring Suitor. Here’s how it works: a brave volunteer has offered me her real online dating profile. We’re going to take a look, and then we’re going to match her with her perfect planeswalker or legend.

While you’re reading, I invite you to wonder: who’s your Magic match? If you’re curious, read to the end to see how you can find out…

Meet Alice

Our volunteer this week – let’s call her Alice – sent me her OkCupid profile. She’s a woman, doesn’t smoke cigarettes, doesn’t have kid and doesn’t want them, but does have cats. She’s an atheist (but it’s not important), and she declined to give her astrological sign (so probably a Gemini – kidding, kidding!). Here’s Alice’s self-summary:

  • I’m an awkward queer weirdo. Looking to exchange amusing anecdotes, play board games, and maybe cuddle.
  • My style is casual Pokemon cosplay.
  • SJW. ACAB. Fatter in person.
  • Want to slowly fall in love over years of friendship and then awkwardly make out at a party? I’m your girl.
  • If I ever vanish while messaging, it’s probably because I have fallen into a pit of existential dread.

Reading this over, Alice has a self-deprecating streak (and I’m not talking about “fatter in person” – dating while fat is fucking tough and that strikes me as an honest attempt to scare off people who might be assholes to Alice about her size). She uses the word “awkward” twice, and is already putting one foot out the door, suggesting it will take years to get to know her and that she might just ghost out of pure dread. At the same time, Alice is obviously funny, clever, and passionate about her beliefs. Some other highlights from Alice’s profile include her dream job:

  • Designing live action role play summer camps! For real, I have a master’s degree in LARP design from NYU.

Alice likes to take pictures of:

  • My cats in costumes. I did dress them up like Eeveelutions for Halloween.

Alice’s ideal weekend:

  • one day of chilling at home in PJs for 24 hours doing chores like the adult I am
  • one day of games with friends

And finally, what is Alice really looking for?

  • Someone to develop a cuddly friendship or romance.
  • 🙂 trans & nb friendly 🙂

Alice included some of the pics from her profile, which I’m not going to share. Instead, I’ll show you a piece of card art that shows the vibes. For Alice I’m going with a recent favorite.

Elspeth and Koth clasp hands, grinning warmly at each other. Elspeth puts a hand fondly on his shoulder. From the card Resistance Reunited

Alice’s photos show her being silly and playful, in cosplay or striking a pose, and mostly with people you can tell are close friends. Elspeth and Koth’s joyful reunion captures some of the way she looks at her besties in these photos.

Meet Alice’s match

Now that we know who we’re talking about, let’s cast Vampiric Tutor and search the library for Alice’s perfect match.

Alice is witty, playful, proudly nerdy (she has a MASTER’S DEGREE in LIVE ACTION ROLE-PLAYING), and passionate about her beliefs. She’s also obviously nervous about seeking a relationship and wants to go slow. She wants to go so slow, in fact, that she wants her suitors to be prepared up front in case she gets scared and runs away

We need to strike a tricky balance for Alice. First, we need someone who will appreciate this delightful ball of nerdy energy. Second, we obviously need someone gentle and reassuring, so that Alice can feel safe enough to avoid that pit of existential dread. But while it goes without saying that Alice needs someone who will respect her boundaries, she also needs someone who will push her just a little, who won’t wait years for Alice to decide to make her move.

In short, I really don’t think that we can do better for Alice than Saheeli Rai.

Saheeli grinning as she levitates a filigree artiifact in the air, flourishing her arms dramatically. From the card Saheeli, Filigree Master.

Saheeli is the kind of person who can hear a dinosaur described once and cancel all her plans immediately so she can make one. She and Alice can have a blast nerding out together; Alice can dress her cats as little ornate thopters, or Saheeli can decorate her thopters as filigree cats. And don’t forget: Alice declares her principles proudly (ACAB!), and Saheeli’s revolutionary bona fides are excellent. Their values and their interests are compatible.

But beyond all that, Saheeli is also a rare blend of kind and bold; she’ll help Alice feel safe while hopefully pushing her just far enough out of her comfort zone. Consider Huatli’s reaction in “Notes” when she tries to be coy with Saheeli and Saheeli answers with a direct invitation. “You lunge when I dip, and your forward strike has struck me plain and kindled the blush of my cheeks.” This is what we’re going for.

(You may ask: Am I proposing breaking up Huatli and Saheeli? Never. Never for a moment. In fact, go to your room and think about what you’ve done. Obviously, in this scenario, Saheeli has been trapped on our plane for all eternity, and after exhausting her options, Saheeli looks out at the stars and knows that while she and Huatli will always treasure each other, it’s time for them both to move on).

That’s my match for Alice – I wonder if you agree, or if there’s someone else you’d pair her with. Maybe you’re looking, or still have your old dating profile looking around, and you’re curious who your match would be? Let me know on twitter, and maybe you’ll see your profile, properly anonymized, in a future column…

Dora Rogers (she/her) is a writer, game designer, and heart-eyes lesbo from Montreal. She is one half of Gal Pal Games, and you can find her solo TTRPG and interactive fiction projects on Follow her in all the places, or catch her on Arena playing questionable Vorthos decks in Standard.

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