By J. R. Wagner
|What? A bear.|
A short story for this hump-day? Why not?
an impromptu story...
I was sitting at my desk stirring my soup-in-a-cup lunch and contemplating whether I should eat the sad looking apple sitting beside it when something fell through one of the drop ceiling panels just in front of my desk. Everyone in the office screamed as it broke apart on the heavily soiled carpet. Then, everyone screamed again when the realized why the tile had fallen. Slowly recovering from the impact was a very large, very unhappy looking insect. I couldn’t tell what it was, exactly –it looked like a centipede or millipede only its body was the size of my lower leg.
Immediately upon realizing it was a giant bug of some sort, everyone in the office proceeded to jump up on their desks (including the aged, infirm, slightly overweight woman from AP) and continued to shriek as the creature began to move. Slow at first, the insect picked up speed and began circling the open space between the desks. Without warning, a high heeled shoe that could have only come from Cheryl, the person in the office who dresses like she’s eighteen and looks like she’s fifty (there is on in every office), landed just beside the creature’s head. It froze.
That’s when things started getting really strange. Rather than divert in another direction, the bug latched onto the pump and began what can only be described as an crocodile death-roll. The bloody thing rolled so fast that both it and the shoe became a blur and before long, bits and pieces of the faux leather exterior began flying out of the tornado-like spin. After a minute of this and the accompanying screams, the creature stopped and the room silenced.
The shoe was gone. Sure there were small pieces strewn about but the majority of the shoe had disappeared. My plan of giving it a good punt and running for the door dissipated as I envisioned what my leg would look like if that thing latched on. People calmed slightly and began picking up their phones. Some were taking pictures or video while others were calling for help.
The beast continued to circle the room inciting screams from those to whom it passed closest during its circumnavigation. Without warning, the creature froze. An instant later it ran (faster than you'd think those little legs could carry it) toward the door. It climbed straight up the wall and onto the ceiling where it stilled just above the doorway. A moment later, we all knew why.
A cacophony of screams greeted our new receptionist who pushed open the door but they were too late. The creature dropped from its perch and right onto her head. She began screaming and swatting at this thing that had taken hold of her hair. She blindly ran into the door frame then out the door and down the hall striking several filing cabinets and knocking over a copier during her flight.
Taking my cue, I hopped down from my desk, grabbed my purse and made for the exit. I never claimed to be brave –certainly not when it involves giant shoe-eating bugs falling from the ceiling. Several others followed my lead. We huddled silently in the parking lot waiting. The sound of an approaching ambulance did not bode well for the fate of our new receptionist. I didn’t stick around to find out and have absolutely no plans of returning to work anytime soon.