Alina Percea, 18, needed to pay for a computing degree.
So, perhaps in an attempt to prove how significant computing is in modern life, she auctioned her virginity on a German Web site.
However, unlike Natalie Dylan, the American who claims to have secured bids of $3.7 million for the privilege of deflowering her (although no deeds seem either to have been signed or done), Alina did not attract offers in quite the same region.
The best bid she managed to secure came in at 8,800 pounds, or just over $13,000. The bidder, a 45-year-old Italian man, came through at the last minute by doubling the leading price.
Which was charming of him, so much so that Alina has now chosen to reveal details of how the deal enjoyed closure.
You will be moved to hear that she did, indeed, enjoy it. She was flown to Venice to meet her fairly decent proposal.
The Daily Mail quoted her as describing her first impressions: "At the arrivals lounge, a man came over, smiled, handed me a box of chocolates and said: 'Welcome to Venice.' He looked much younger than 45, short, but nicely dressed, with dark hair, green eyes and a kind smile."
So it all started, as memorable days should, with a pleasant surprise. Alina admitted she was hoping for something of a "Pretty Woman" scenario.
The man took her site-seeing in Venice and didn't happen to mention whether he was single, married or just a little odd. He had booked them into a five-star hotel for the consummation of the transaction.
As for the act itself, well, Alina says they had sex just the once (after all, he was 45) and apparently had breakfast the next morning "just like any other couple."
Oh, and for breakfast, Alina had a morning-after pill.
Forgive me if I didn't mention it, unprotected sex was part of the deal. Of course, the gentleman had a certificate to prove that he was STD-free.
May I leave you with one final twist to a story that neither Danielle Steel nor Mills and Boon nor Stephen King would have dared even to outline?
Alina would like to see her benefactor again. And she promises that if he agrees to see her, she won't make him pay. I think she means "not for the sex, anyway".
Isn't it lovely how the Web can sometimes create the perfect conditions for romance to have a chance?