The Unstolen Heart
by Neel Trivedi
The walk to his boss's office was as apprehensive as can be.
Larry knew he was walking on thin ice. Just last week, his boss had asked him to "off" 11 people. He barely got five.
And now this.
His hand trembled as he knocked on the door.
"Come in," he heard from inside.
Larry opened the door & made his way towards the chair.
It was bad enough that his boss's desk was so small, that even sitting across him would only be a distance of a mere two inches. But even worse was the dark, ominous wallpaper surrounding the desk & file cabinets. Pitch black with so many skulls soaked in blood, they would probably give Satan himself nightmares!
He wondered if that was intentional to keep the employees on their toes. If it was, it was working like a charm!
"I checked all the files this morning but I couldn't for the life of me, find what I had asked you to get. You care to explain?"
Larry gulped. "I'm sorry," he replied. Did he say it? Whisper it? Or just think it? His voice was so soft, even he couldn't tell.
"I tried hard but Bill was a stubborn son of a bitch," he continued. "He said we could do whatever we want to him but even death wouldn't convince him to hand it over."
With Larry's each word, his boss's face got redder & his veins, bigger.
Larry gulped again & reluctantly continued.
"He said it didn't even belong to him anymore because he gave it to his wife for safekeeping years ago."
His boss stared at him with his fiery eyes like only he could and said, "Who am I?"
He pounded his fist on the table and shouted, "Answer the damn question! Who am I? What's my name & occupation."
Larry was now almost on the verge of tears as he mumbled "The grim reaper. Your job is to
keep the world less polluted from over population."
"Exactly!" his boss replied. "And you're my main assistant. And you couldn't even get one measly heart?"
Larry took a deep breath & said, "I said I'm sorry. It'll never happen again. I just..."
"Shut the HELL UP! NO MORE excuses! You're fired! Now get out of my office!"
Larry wiped away the tear streaming down his cheek and got up. He made his way to the door.
"One more thing Larry."
He turned around & saw his boss smiling. He couldn't remember the last time that had happened.
"I don't normally do this but since you've worked for me a while, I'll afford you this one privilege. So here goes: What's your dream coffin to lie in after death?"
Larry's face turned pale as he struggled to breath. He slumped to floor as his breathing got slower and slower.
"Go-go-gooold," he croaked as he closed his eyes & found eternal peace!
Neel Trivedi is a freelance journalist & in the advertising business in Dallas, TX. He writes poetry & fiction. His work has been featured in Drabblez Magazine, Chronos Anthology, Mojave Heart Review, Dodging The Rain & the upcoming anthology, Rising From The Ashes. He can be reached on Twitter @Neelt2001.