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Devil in a Necktie
Another day, another dollar. This is what Baxter Sanderson says to himself every morning to get him self motivated to go to the awful place that he calls a job. When he was in college he never thought that this was what being an adult was like. No more parties, no more social life. Now the only thing that he has is his job, no matter how much he hates it. Baxter could never knew the real reason behind his hatred for his job, it started right when he started working.
This morning was no different from every other morning before; wake up, get ready, get in his crappy car and go to his crappy job. He works in an office as a telemarketer. So not only does he hate his job, most people hate him too. As he walked into his office building, he saw that the walls had multi colored christmas lights all over them. Baxter assumed that this was his boss's lame way of being festive. As Baxter sat down at his desk the sound of the jammed printer filled the room. This was nothing new to him the printer always got jammed. Footsteps came up to Baxter's cubicle, it was his boss Mr. Lumbergh.
“How are you doing this morning, Baxter?” Lumbergh asked, there was always something about his voice that Baxter found unbearable.
“I'm doing fine, sir.” Baxter replied.
“Have you made any sales yet this morning?” A question Baxter heard a lot around here but never this early.
“Not yet, sir, I've only been here for about fifteen minutes.” Baxter said in a calm voice even though getting asked that question this early could not lead to anything good.
“Well it seems that you have been slaking on sales lately. Montez over there has out sold you every day of the week so far.” Montez had been the top salesmen for the last three months, there was no way Baxter would out sell him. This was just another way of Lumbergh trying to get on his nerves.
Knowing that he could not argue with Lumbergh, all Baxter said was, “Alright, I'll get right on it, sir.”
This was enough to make Lumbergh nod his head in approval and walk off. Baxter silently cursed out Lumbergh as he walked away. Not even at a work for thirty minutes and already being harassed by him, Baxter thought. This was nothing new though, at this point in his career in his job he was used to it.
He walked into the building thinking he would work here for a year until he found a “real” job. It was not a huge office, but then again there are not many big buildings in Ocala. Being right out of college he thought that he was on top of the world, even though he had been rejected by four different jobs before this one. He had never worked in an office before doing anything, he thought it would be a piece of cake. He knocked on the door that said “Lumbergh” and heard a monotone voice from inside say, “Come in.”
He opened the door and saw a man sitting behind a wooden desk. In Baxter's mind the man looked like he was trying to hard to stay connect with his inner youth. His hair was dyed jet black but with a few grey hairs here and there. Baxter could see an old Foreigner poster hidden buy a filing cabinet. “People actually liked them?” Baxter thought to himself.
“Please have a seat.” Lumbergh said in his bland voice. Baxter noticed the staleness in his voice right away. They talked for no more than ten minutes when Baxter realized that this guy would not become his friend, but Baxter reluctantly took the job he had no other choice.
Four years later and he's still here. Baxter though he would be long gone by this point, but things did not turn out the way he thought they would, but he always assures himself that things could be far worse. Baxter wanted nothing more than to get out of this job, but he could never seem to find another one. No matter how much he hated it there, there was always something bringing him back he never knew what though.
Lumbergh was usually more lenient around the holidays, dealing with his own family, if he even had a family. Baxter came into work this day and he felt something different. It was much more quiet than it usually was in the mornings. Even the cheerful Christmas lights did not help the somber feel in the room. He sat down at his desk expecting Lumbergh to peak his head over with some snide remark. What he saw was different though, it was Clarence Johnson from corporate. The only times he would ever show up is when something bad happened. Baxter did not know of any thing that had gone wrong recently.
“How are you doing Mr. Johnson?”
“Not too bad, Baxter. Unfortunately I have some bad news to share with you. This morning we found out that your boss, Mr. Lumbergh, passed away last night.” The words hit Baxter like a ton of bricks. He did not know whether to be sadden by the death of his boss, or to be ecstatic at the death of the man that he has hated for the past four years.
“Well, I am sorry to hear that. D-do you know how he died?” He stuttered over the words.
“We are not one hundred percent sure, but we believe that he had a heart attack while he was sleeping.” Baxter thought that a man as heartless as Lumbergh would ever die from a heart attack.
That day went by very quickly for Baxter. This was the first time in a long time that Baxter felt like being at work. Aside from his boss's occasional sick days, Lumbergh was always at work. All day however, Baxter had an unsettling felling in his stomach, a feeling like something would go wrong.
Driving home from work Baxter saw something that disturbed him very much. He saw walking across the street a man who looked eerily familiar. He looked closer and saw that the man was Lumbergh. It had to be! Baxter thought. He could tell by the jet black hair and the khaki slacks that he wore every day. Baxter pulled next to the man.
“Hey Lumbergh,” Baxter shouted “What are you doing? There is a rumor going around at the office that you died.” The man looked at the car like Baxter was a crazy person.
“Uhh sir, I don't know what you're talking about.” Baxter was confused. This man was Lumbergh, it couldn't have not been him. The man was convinced that he was Lumbergh and walked into a coffee shop. Baxter parked his car and went in after him. He knew that this was one of Lumbergh's schemes to get into Baxter's head. He ran into the coffee shop shouting Lumbergh's name. He was being stared at by about twenty normal every day people. But what Baxter saw was different, he saw about twenty Lumberghs staring at him. Baxter was terrified. He thought that his boss was gone forever. Baxter knew that he wasn't crazy, he had never been, so his first thought was that this was one hundred percent real. He ran out of the coffee shop in terror and jumped back into his car and hit the gas pedal hard. He came to a quick red light and had to slam on his brakes. He took a deep breath to try and figure out what happened. He looked up into his rearview mirror and he saw the jet black hair and thick glasses. Baxter screamed and slammed on the gas speeding through the red light.
He woke up in a white room.
“Is this heaven?” Baxter said out loud. He heard a steady beeping but he could not turn his head to see what it was.
“Ha ha, no son, you're in the hospital. You were in a car accident yesterday, it's a miracle you survived.” Baxter looked up and saw a heavy set man with a thick beard. He looked down and saw that only his left leg was in a cast, but he felt the pain all over.
“You have a visiter.” The doctor said, and he stepped out an in stepped a tall thin man. He was wearing a suit and has an expressionless face. Baxter did not recognize the man. He sat down close to Baxter's bed.
“It is time now.” Is all the man said. All Baxter could see was black with a small light far away with a figure standing there. He ran towards it as fast as he could yelling for help. As he got closer the figure became more and more clear. When Baxter got ten feet away he could recognize the person. It was Lumbergh.
“ Mr. Sanderson do you have you're quota reached for the day?”