Never Forget

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic
Work was getting Craig down. Was his mind-numbing office job the worst job ever? The fact that nobody could remember his name really grated. Was it him? Surely not. He was reaching the end of his patience with it all. Something had to give.

Submitted: September 08, 2016

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Submitted: September 08, 2016

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Craig had never been what you’d call an outgoing person. Not so much the life and soul of the party, he was more the awkward shyness. He got by by plodding on, keeping his mouth shut and hoping for the best. And so, at almost thirty years old he still lived with his parents and worked for a shipping company. In an office full of so-called wacky characters he just kind of passed under the radar. The company was full of louder, more extroverted people. Among the office clowns, flirts, alpha males and gossips, Craig attracted little or no attention.

While most of the others spent the working day chatting about last night’s reality TV Craig busied himself with work. He knew he was by far the most productive member of his department. Instead of being distracted by his colleagues, he wold try and zone out and focus on the job. The figures spoke for themselves. Not that he received the recognition he deserved. Far from it. Those that made the most noise, those that were seen to be hard working, those that made a grand performance of working, they had the praise and the bonuses lavished upon them. Craig tried not to let it all get to him. He would shrug to himself when a colleague would get taken out for dinner as a reward for a job well done. He would remind himself that he didn’t subscribe to office politics.

Another thing that grated was the amount of times his colleagues, even those on his own department, forgot his name. One morning his manager, a forty year old man who fancied himself as Alan Sugar meets the Wolf of Wall Street, was showing round the new trainees who had just joined the firm. Craig felt like telling the three fresh faced school leavers to leave the company before they started. He wanted to tell them to go to university and study hard so they could get a proper job. But he said nothing. His manager introduced the new starters to his staff as he paraded around the office floor. He neared Craig’s desk. Here we go.

‘And this is Colin.’ said his manager.

‘It’s Craig.’

‘Yes, of course it is. How long have you been here? Six months isn’t it?’

‘I’ve been here two years.’

As the manager ushered the newbies towards the other departments Craig spotted amused grins from his colleagues. They clearly found the mix up with his name and length of service hilarious.

Later that day one of his workmates tossed a stack of papers on his desk. The feller went to walk away but Craig called out.

‘These aren’t mine.’

‘Yes, they are.’

‘It’s Ocean imports docs. I only do exports.’

‘Really? You do ocean exports?’

‘No.’ he gritted his teeth. ‘I do European exports.’

‘Do you? Are you sure?’

Craig just glared at him as he took the paperwork and went to find a home for it.

A week later the company celebrated its 100th anniversary. Craig cringed as the company, its senior staff and most of the clerks made such a big deal over the anniversary. One man, a pompous salesman, had been banging on about it for weeks.

‘Can you believe its one hundred years? Can you? I can’t believe it.’

Craig fought the urge to say he could believe it because he hadn’t bloody been there when the company was formed. Just before their five o’clock finish his manager paraded across the floor. He carried a large cardboard box. As he passed each member of staff he produced a bottle of champagne and presented it with an ‘it’s okay you don’t have to thank me’ expression.

Craig prepared himself to be so grateful. The man smiled at him as he reached his desk. Craig smiled back. His manager rummaged in the box. His smile flickered for a moment.

‘Sorry, Carl. I’ve run out. I must have counted wrong.’

‘No worries.’ Craig mumbled.

The manager pulled a ten pound note from his pocket and held it out to Craig.

‘No. Don’t worry about it.’

Craig turned away, ignoring the offered cash.

‘Honestly. I insist.’

‘Seriously,’ growled Craig, ‘just leave it.’

Craig was getting really fed up with it all. He was better than this poxy office with its ridiculous rules and idiotic colleagues. He should have done more with his life. He was clever. He should have done something with his interest and knowledge in computers. He was a natural with IT. He understood computers and technology more than he did people.

At lunchtime a few days later Craig popped down to the office kitchen to make a cup of tea. The managing director came in clutching his mug. As he flocked the kettle on he spoke.

‘Afternoon, son. You must be one of the new starters.’

‘Erm, no. I’ve been here for two years.’

‘Have you? How come I’ve never seen you?’

‘You have. I sat next to you at last year’s Christmas party.’

‘Are you sure?’

‘Quite sure.’

‘Yes. Yes. I remember now. It’s Phil, isn’t it? You were there with your wife, Vicki?’

Craig tried to swallow the scream that burned in his throat. He took a deep breath then smiled.

‘Yes,’ he said. ‘that’s me.’

Still furious he marched back to his desk. What was wrong with people? Did he really deserve such rude, ignorant treatment just because he was not an outspoken moron?

He shook his head. He busied himself with the tasks he had to do and hoped the afternoon would pass quickly. By four o’clock he had got lots done. As it was payday he clicked on the works intranet and viewed his payslip. Then he checked the correct amount had gone into his account. That was something, he thought, they may not know who he is but at least they’ve paid him. Then he stopped. He smiled. He spent the next hour tapping furiously at the computer keys and flicking from tab to tab on the screen. He moved from system to system, website to website.

At five o’clock Craig had finished. He grinned as he thought about what he’d done. His heart pounded in his chest. He had transferred thousands of pounds from the company’s account into a secure, secret account he’s just set up. He’d then gone about covering his tracks. His last move had been to hack into the company database. He removed every trace of him ever having worked there. Well, he thought, perhaps that will teach them to treat people like human beings.

Job done. He pulled his coat on and headed for the door. He would be so glad to leave this place and the people that worked there far behind him. And with a decent amount of money behind him he suddenly had lots of options. First, he thought, I think a holiday is in order.

As he went out the door a woman on sales called out.

‘Goodnight, Clive.’

‘Goodnight.’ Craig grinned.


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