Hel: Yes! And I explicitly told you that from the start!
Thrym: Yeah, but I didn't think you meant it.
A situation common in works that aren't bound by No Hugging, No Kissing standards. Alice is being flirted with by Bob in such a manner that it's unambiguously clear that he has an interest in her. This interest can range from playful teasing to kissing or even going all the way.
However, Bob has a reputation as The Casanova or Handsome Lech with a penchant for going through girlfriends faster than a box of tissues, which makes Alice believe that he only views her as another Girl of the Week. This depresses Alice because she really does like Bob, but dreads the inevitable day when he will grow tired of her and move on to a new conquest.
Eventually Alice will have to ask Bob the titular question. Inevitably, the answer is no; Bob's interest in Alice is more than sexual desire (which is implicitly shallow) and on a deeper emotional level.
Sometimes, Bob will be so used to Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places that he doesn't realize his deeper feelings for Alice at first, and will have to learn that there really is a difference between lust and love.
Note that if Alice instead assumes wholeheartedly that she's "different" to Bob, Bob will almost always live up to his womanizing reputation and leave her heartbroken.
Also see Sex Equals Love which sometimes overlaps with this, though the focus here is on whether the sex or flirting is motivated by love or not.
- Early on in the Gravitation manga, Shuichi confronts Yuki on his sleeping around with women even after he's agreed to take Shuichi as his lover, demanding to know where he stands among all these women. Yuki replies that he's the first one... in stupidity, anyway. Later events prove that he really does care for Shuichi as more than a sex toy, though.
- Berserk: Casca seems to imply this after she and Guts make love when he returns to aid the Hawks one year after he had left. He tells her his plans of leaving again after their leader Griffith is rescued, which leaves Casca thinking of Guts as a selfish bastard who is ready to forget about her. Then he tells her to come with him.
- Inverted in My Huntsman Academia. After learning that Izuku Cannot Talk to Women, Yang quickly develops a habit of acting flirtatious around him to watch him stutter and blush for a quick laugh. But while they're hanging out in Vale over Color Week, she asks him if he feels like she's bullying him with her antics and promises to stop if he wants her to. The question initially stuns Izuku, who decides to disabuse her of that notion and thanks her for bringing out of his shell and helping him feel more comfortable around girls.
- In Iron Man, there are shades of this with Pepper and Tony's relationship. After they slow dance at a party, they go out on the balcony where Pepper has a minor freakout; partly because Tony's reputation as a Casanova makes her insecure about his intentions. Further complicated by the fact that she really is attracted to him.
- In .45, Liz is seduced by Kat and assumes the two of them will become a couple she murders Clancy and frames Big Al for the crime in order to free Kat from his influence. However, Kat then causally blows her off: claiming that she had done no more that what Liz had taught, and even throwing her own words back in her face. Kat then leaves as Liz breaks down.
- A staple of romantic novels.
- In Dragon Bones Ward is flirted with by an attractive woman, and rejects her, on the grounds that he would be just a toy to her (he knows she's sleeping with other men and her offer is just about no-strings-attached sex).
- Loretta Chase's Mr. Impossible. Daphne thinks that Lovable Rogue Rupert's shameless come-ons to her are only his standard way of playing around with women. It isn't until near the end of the novel that Rupert realizes that love is the reason why his feelings for Daphne are more complex than wanting to get her naked, and is finally able to enter into an actual relationship with her.
- In Heroes Adrift Lee finally gets sexually involved with her Urban Legend Love Life partner Taro. This scene is definitely likely to happen in the next book, seeing as she went into it expecting to get dumped when he finds other women to boink.
- It's probably completely platonic, but something very similar to this trope happens in the Hand of Thrawn duology. Supreme Commander Pellaeon, hearing the rumors of his mentor and leader Grand Admiral Thrawn coming Back from the Dead, talks to a subordinate, trying to work out why Thrawn wouldn't have contacted him. He considers that maybe Thrawn just wants him where he is, out of the way.
Subordinate: I don't believe he would do that to you, sir. Not after all you went through together.
Pellaeon: You don't believe that any more than I do. Thrawn wasn't human, you know, no matter how human he might have looked. He was an alien, with alien thoughts and purposes and agendas. Perhaps I was never more to him than just one more tool he could use in reaching his goal.
- In The Wheel of Time series, Mat gets used as a "doll" by Queen Tylin. He gets a bit of teasing for this, even before the rest of the cast knows what's actually going on, since he has a reputation as a womanizer.
- Agatha Christie's novel Five Little Pigs has a serial womanizer artist murdered, with his wife having been overheard to say that "he's too cruel". She was jailed for his murder despite claiming her innocence, and it turns out in spite of his numerous affairs with his latest model, he always returned to his wife and never considered abandoning her. The latest girl was madly in love with him, and didn't take it well when she found she was just a toy to him (the "too cruel" referred to the man's imminent behavior towards the girl, not his wife). So she killed him and framed his wife...but has found her life dreary and boring ever since.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
- In the episode "Hush", Anya complains that Xander doesn't have any strong feelings for her and believes the only thing he cares about is "lots of orgasms." She's proven wrong when Xander assaults Spike, believing him to be attacking her and drinking her blood.
- Spike also accuses Buffy of this once they start sleeping together. While she admits to having feelings for him on some level, the combination of her self-loathing, depression and their Moral Dissonance due to his soulless nature makes it impossible for her to truly love and accept him. Meaning, for the most part, he's entirely correct.
- In Cheers, Diane mulls over this subject often, regarding Sam's feelings towards her.
- In Spaced Twist asks Brian that she wants him to see her as a whole. When he assures her he does, she stresses "A whole Brian, with a w."
- In the My Name Is Earl Flashback episode "Guess Who's Coming Out of Joy," Joy has been cheating on Earl with Darnell. She suggests getting down in the freezer at the Crab Shack, which does not appeal to Darnell. He then asks her, "Why's it always gotta be just sex with us? I want to go to the movies, like a normal couple!" The two proceed to argue, and (temporarily) end their relationship.
- In Gossip Girl, Blair wonders if the only reason Chuck has been pursuing her so tenaciously is because he can't stand losing. He confirms that it was all just a game to him. He's lying through his teeth.
- In the song "Paradise by the Dashboard Light", Phil Rizzuto's baseball play-by-play (which is also describing what's going on in the car between the two teens,) says
safe at third! Holy cow, stolen base!
He's taking a pretty big lead out there, almost
daring him to try and pick him off. The pitcher
glance over, winds up, and it's bunted, bunted
down the third base line, the suicide squeeze in on!
Here he comes, squeeze play, it's gonna be close,
here's the throw, there's the play at the plate,
holy cow, I think he's gonna make it!
- Which makes that a hell of a time to stop and have a relationship talk. But one which makes him duly compliant in promising to love her 'til the end of time — and, in due course, praying for that very same end of time to be released from his promise.
- The song "Starring Role" by Marina and the Diamonds is pretty much this trope. To quote the first verse :
''You're hard to hug, tough to talk to, and I never fall asleep
When you're in my bed, all you give me is a heartbeat
I've turned into a statue, and it makes me feel depressed
'Cause the only time you open up is when we get undressed
:: But that's just the "best" part of it, more or less everything else reminds one of this trope.
- The Drifters' "You're More Than a Number in My Little Red Book" is an attempt to console a lover who's been convinced otherwise by the rumour mill.
- The protagonist in HoneyWorks' song "Mean Encounter" is a playboy who uses sweet words to flirt with girls. Over the course of the song, he fell in love with a girl who is immune to his charms. She started to reciprocate his feeling, but near the end of the music video, she saw him sweet talk other girls to get out of trouble, causing her to wonder if the things he's said to her is all a lie.
- "I'm Not Your Toy" by La Roux is a song that rejects this notion. It's lyrics sing about how the boy the singer knows frustrates attempts to love them and that they can't have any faith put in them to return it.
- Katawa Shoujo:
- Surprisingly, Hanako's path inverts this. Hanako allows Hisao to have sex with her because she doesn't want him to keep seeing her as a child that needs to be protected.
- Turns up in Emi Ibarazaki's path as well. Hisao thinks this may be the case, as she sleeps with Hisao multiple times, but doesn't want him to get closer to her emotionally. Thankfully, he realises her reasoning behind this and the pair eventually overcome their difficulties.
- Seira Hinamori from MGT School uses people to get shoutouts. She does it to Zodiac and Lauryn, who both end up betraying her.
- Between, Satan and Saddam in the South Park movie, Satan is the one worried that he's being used—both for sex and as a means to conquer the world.
- Steven Universe:
- Sadie and Lars share an obvious Belligerent Sexual Tension, but there's an implication they have a physical (and possibly sexual) Secret Relationship. It's also obvious the "secret" part is all from Lars fearing he could be seen as uncool for it, and Sadie makes it clear in "Joking Victim" and "The New Lars" that she hates Lars being such a fairweather friend/lover.
- In "We Need to Talk", Greg worries that he's just a passing "playmate" for Rose, but turns out Rose doesn't really understand how a serious relationship is (especially since she and Greg are different species) but both agree to make it work between them.