The Boss from Hell

by Kimberly McKenzie

"Good morning, could you please hold?" Julia head began spinning as the phone lines continued to light up one after another. It had been one of those weeks where she wished she were anywhere besides here.

"Julia, where is my copies?" Mr. Hilgord shouted as he came near her desk.

She had been on a phone line answering questions but Mr. Hilgord had no sense as she put the call on hold. Running to the Xerox machine, Julia pulled the copies out and handed them to him.

"Iíll be back at 1:00, so have my presentation ready for my afternoon meeting."

"But Mr. Hilgord, you just gave those to me this morning. I havenít a chance to start it yet," Julia replied pointing out how busy her morning had been.

"I donít want to hear your excuses, just get it done," Mr. Hilgord snapped walking away.

Julia wanted to quit but she talked herself out of it like so many times before. "Iíll be out of here one day," Julia said to herself trying to keep her sanity.

Mr. Hilgord was an impossible person to work for and Julia had been the fifth person to work under him.

Typing as fast as she could, Julia made it through the twenty pages of scribble he left for her to figure out. It would have been nice if he had told her this morning that he needed this, Julia thought to herself. Mr. Hilgord had no clue to the work involved and yet he took all the credit for the quality work she gave him day after day. Julia never looked for any pat on the back but a simple "thank you," would have been a kind gesture on his part.

The months had quickly rolled by and Julia had been here exactly one year to date. She was denied a raise for a lack of excuses she could hardly believe. Some nerve, Julia thought as Mr. Hilgord profiled to and from work in his Mercedes Benz. His list of improvements could run a mile long but that didnít stop his yearly raises she mumbled in disgust.

Julia became further enraged by Mr. Hilgord newfound weekly golf outings. Of course on company time, leaving a bundle of work for her when he should have been doing some himself. Now had sheíd done the same, well letís just say she wouldnít be here, she smirked quietly to herself.

One fine morning Mr. Hilgord came stepping in with his golf clothing on. "Julia have my reservations been confirmed for todayís tournament?"

"Yes, I left the confirmation in your office," Julia said briskly at his laziness to read his mail.

"Oh, Iíll take coffee with cream to go," Mr. Hilgord stated turning to go back to his office.

"Thatís it," Julia grumbled under her breath in disgust. There was no way in hell she would be his servant she ranted to herself. And to top it all he came back to her desk with a pile of papers in his hand.

"Oh, I forgot to mention that I need these put together for our major investors meeting this afternoon."

"Why certainly," Julia smiled as she took the folder. "And let me get your coffee," she replied politely as the daggers hit her in the back.

"Iíll see you in a while," Mr. Hilgord said pressing the elevator button.

"No you wonít," Julia whispered softly under her breath, leaving shortly behind him.

It was a relief to be from out of his reach, Julia thought as she started her car. It was cool out and the breeze felt heavenly as she let her convertible roof down. The shining red convertible had been a gift from her father. Such hard work always paid off she laughed as she headed home.

Mr. Hilgord returned to the office a hour before his 3:00 meeting. Refreshed from his morning outing he was ready to take on anything as he stepped off the elevator on the 22nd floor.

"Julia, bring me the report," he shouted as he headed into his office. When he heard no response he figured she was busy wrapping things up.

After making a few phone calls, Mr. Hilgord decided to see what was taking Julia so long. When he reached her desk the note she had left startled him.

"Why that ___," Mr. Hilgord angrily shouted. "How could Julia do this," he grumbled running back to his office. Flipping through his Rolodex, he quickly phoned the parties to his meeting.

"Mr. Hilgord theyíve left already for your office," the receptionist replied on the other end.

"Oh my," he said gasping for air. This was a major meeting with big investors he thought trying to figure out what to do. His boss would be livid if he heard of the mess that would soon transpire. He had nothing to give them; dependent on the work Julia had always given him.

"Ok, think, think," Mr. Hilgord called out to himself. Determined not to make a disaster out of things, he ran to the Xerox machine to make copies. He would just have to tell them his help moved on to another place before he could find some help. Besides, his writing wasnít that bad he thought to himself as he loaded the paper in.

"Now how on Earth did Julia make two-sided copies," Mr. Hilgord thought scanning over the machine. He fumbled around pressing a series of buttons before hitting the start button.

"Now whatís so hard about this," he thought remembering how much Julia complained about everything. People never want to do their job he mumbled as the copies continued.

Mr. Hilgord hadnít turned his head for more than two seconds before a loud noise escaped the machine.

"Oh no," he screamed as the machine came to a complete stop. "What am I to do now," he shouted looking at the flashing lights on the machine. Angry, he began opening all the compartments until finally becoming frustrated kicking the machine.

"Damn you," he blurted as if the machine could hear him. He snatched the papers from the sorter and headed back to his office. He would just have to present without any aid he thought as he slumped into his chair.

"Just a few minutes to rest," Mr. Hilgord whimpered to himself. This must be a horrible nightmare he wondered, hoping Julia would appear.

Reality came crashing back as he heard the elevator ring. Collecting his composure he greeted the members as he seated them around the conference table.

"Shall we get started?" Mr. Hilgord asked promptly. He just wanted to get this meeting over with as quickly as possible.

"Letís wait a few more minutes," Mr. Beacon asked. "Iíve invited a new member of our board to the meeting."

"Thatís wonderful," Mr. Hilgord thought to himself. Of all days for someone to be invited to a meeting.

A few minutes passed before a slight tap echoed through the door.

"Iíll get it," Mr. Hilgord replied standing up.

"Before you open the door, I want to remind everyone to make a warm welcome to our newest edition," Mr. Beacon requested.

"Julia what on Earth are you doing here?" Mr. Hilgord asked as she walked through the door. "After the stunt you pulled today, you are not welcomed back," he hissed angrily in her ear.

Julia ignored his remark as she made her way to the table.

"Everyone, I would like you to meet my daughter," Mr. Beacon proudly announced.

Mr. Hilgord face was expressionless as Julia smirked quietly to herself. She had to prove herself climbing the corporate ladder and now her day had finally come.

"Good evening gentlemen," Julia said enthusiastically. "As you know I will be taking on many of my fatherís responsibilities and I have many envisions of change in mind. Good changes," she assured them as they headed toward the new millennium.

The room filled with applause as Julia gave her speech. She was very innovative much like her father and the board members accepted her transition in this new role. Mr. Hilgord on the other hand, remained froze as the shock stayed within him. Julia didnít pay him any mind. After all Mr. Hilgord was just being himself she smiled moving on.

The Boss from Hell by Kimberly McKenzie

© Copyright 1999. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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