by K. Ward
Inspired by a WDC prompt, two co-workers devise a plan to get another one fired.
|“Jack, I don’t think think Melinda is doing such a good job here at the office.”
“Why? What makes you think that?” asked Jack.
“She’s too quiet and never talks to us. She’s not only a loner but a snob.” Cindy wrinkled her nose, pointed her finger down her throat, and made a gagging noise.
Jack laughed. “Well, what do you think we could do about it?”
“Well, we can’t tell the boss, because Mr. Grant likes her. But I have a plan.”
Cindy took Jack aside. She led him by the arm towards the coffee room. In a whisper, she said, “Let’s take something from her desk.”
The next day, which was Tuesday, Cindy sat down at her desk, which was adorned with a personalized pen jar with her name in stencils, a red lips made out of glitter, and stickers of two pairs of stiletto heels. She had framed photographs of her family with frames she had designed herself out of pink contact paper and red, foam hearts. She admitted most of her desk was rather messy, though: most of the pens were out on the desk, and papers covered it haphazardly, some of them covering the keyboard. There was an empty Cup ‘O Noodles Styrofoam cup with a dirty fork lying on its side, and crumpled sandwich wrappers intermittently decorating the scene in front of her computer monitor.
Jack’s desk was a bit neater, but still messy. He liked baseball and had not only a poster of the Major League star Brian Roberts, but also baseball cards and a baseball bat paperweight. He had various pens and papers out, too, but no empty food containers.
Melinda’s desk, however, was perfectly unadorned and neat. The only thing out was her latest assignment! She had been working on a customer satisfaction survey. Jack and Cindy carefully and quietly stepped to her desk, like cats on the prowl. Cindy took the document print-out and handed it to Jack. “Shhhh!” she whispered.
Then, with satisfied smiles on their faces, they cleaned up their cubicles, turning off their phones and turning off their computers, and left.
The next day, the boss, Mr. Grant, went to Melinda’s cubicle and spoke to her. “Are you finished analyzing the data from our customer satisfaction survey?”
“I cannot find it, Mr. Grant. I had the printout right here on my desk.”
“I’m sorry to hear that.”
“I’ll print up another copy for you right away.”
Jack and Cindy continued devising the next time they took a break in the coffee room. “Jack, the next move I think we should make it tripping Melinda so that it looks like she spilled something.”
Their opportunity came the next morning when Melinda carried a watermelon-sized tray full of pastries and coffee. “Would you like some?” came her small voice.
But Jack stuck out his foot, and she fell right in front of Mr. Grant.
“Melinda!” he shouted. “That’s a horrible mess! Be careful next time! Clean it up! Do it quickly!”
And so she got on her hands and her knees and started cleaning up the mess. Cindy noticed a tear beginning to fall from her eye.
The next thing Jack and Cindy devised was even more drastic. Cindy typed up a replica of Melinda’s latest assignment, only with grave errors.
It was a billing form. The charges for each client were drastically different than what they were supposed to be billed for. When the clients finally complained, Mr. Grant would fire Melinda; they just knew it.
A couple of weeks passed. Finally, Jack and Cindy could overhear Melinda and Mr. Grant’s conversation from the next room. Mr. Grant’s voice was very loud. “Melinda!!! How could you have done this? Our clients could have sued us! Did you do this intentionally?
“Do you know who might have done this?”
Amazingly, and unfortunately for Jack and Cindy, Melinda was not fired.
But this made them angry.
“What should we do now?!” Cindy was furious.
“Let’s light her desk on fire and frame her for arson.”
After they went to their separate prisons, Melinda and Mr. Grant came to visit them. “I’m sorry that it had to happen this way,” said Melinda, during both visits.
“Well,” said Mr. Grant, “I guess karma caught up with you.”