Tuesday, August 10, 2010

FFF #38 Good Morning, Mr. Jenkins

Submitted for Friday Flash Fiction#38 where we are to use the words Bubble, Toil, Rubble, Coil in a story.

"Bubble, can you come here please?" Mr. Jenkins called from his executive squawk-box.

She sighed and turned from her typewriter to press the button on her end and say, "Yes, sir."

She'd been trying to finish typing this proposal all morning. She looked balefully at her typewriter, reluctant to leave it now that it was working. All morning, the "g" key kept sticking and then her ribbon dried out. She had to wait for Larry from maintainance to come up and fix the keyboard and bring her a new ribbon.

Ah, Larry, she mused. He's so good with his hands. And cute too. Her mind drifted back and she fell into the dreamy memory. He was sitting at her desk, examining the old ribbon. She stood watching him speak quietly about its properties, coiling it back up. The content of his speech was lost on her as she became hypnotized by the lilt in his gentle voice and methodical movements of his agile fingers.

"BUBBLE!" the box barked. "When I said 'come here,' I meant NOW!"

She jumped up and grabbed her steno pad and pencil. As she skittered up the three stairs to his office, she smoothed her red, pencil skirt and then ran her fingers through her blond hair to perk it up and reshape the coils of curls so they bounced in that way that Mr. Jenkins liked. She reached the door and looked down to make sure enough buttons were undone on her breezy chiffon top to tantalize but not so many that she looked easy. Satisfied, she opened the one of the double doors and stepped in.

"Good morning, Mr. Jenkins. I'm so sorry for the delay," she said but didn't explain herself. She had learned that he really didn't care for excuses and frankly, she didn't like giving them. In that way, they were a good match.

He had rules about how a person...a girl was to behave in his presence. She was never permitted to shut the office door unless he asked her to. She had to wait to be invited to sit down. And all ideas were his ideas and all communications had to come frm him. Even when she had to make requests for help with typing from the girls in the secretarial pool. Bubble understood she was his tool and he used her 120 words-per-minute fingers to break through enough of the red tape and bureaucratic rubble to become the top man at this firm.

He looked at her over his half-moon spectacles from behind his vast oak desk. She felt his eyes scan her. She put one hand on her hip, impatient for her invitation to sit. He grinned and slowly moved his eyes up to look into her eyes.

"You know I don't like waiting, Bubble," he said. "I didn't toil my way from the mailroom all the way to full partner waiting on cute little blonds to decide they were ready to work."

"I am sorry, sir," she said, dropping her arms to her sides. "What can I help you with?"


  1. You naughty vixon! Do you mind if I uncoil your ribbon?

    Another great effort dear but I was expecting a little more from the ending.


  2. At first it seemed like she is his tool, but a smart one.

    She is only used as such because she allows it. It must get her what she wants, and much, much more than time with Larry.

    Hmmm. Makes me wonder what more is going on in that pretty little head of hers.

    Seems like a nice start since the ending leaves you thinking.

  3. Thanks, JC. I wanted to explore her character more than anything. Someone whose typing skills and beauty were her tools.

    It is unfinished probably. This girl needs something to do.

  4. I like Bubbles...she is a smart woman, regardless of her standing in the office.
    Clever use of the prompts, too. Had to check if they were all there. Great job!

  5. There was something very risque about that short piece, Flannery.
    Very well worded and one I'd like to see more of....not for the risque element, of course. ;-)

  6. Love your expression "squawk-box". It caught me right at the beginning and I wanted to read on.

  7. ::sigh:: I tried oh-so very hard to get something together for this project and it was just too big for me...

    But that's OK, ths would more than have eclipsed the rubbish I was working on!!

  8. Hypocrite! Did ye not once accuseth me of leaving things out? :)

    Actually, I like the abrupt ending because there are a thousand ways this tale can go, sexy romp, Bubble bludgeoning his skull open, paper football contest, etc, etc.

  9. I, too, loved the 'squawk-box'!

    This certainly sets the scene, Flannery - perhaps you might entertain us with what happened next? ;-)

  10. Another day in the life of... Great use of the prompts and I liked how you tied it all in, I too, like Doc was expecting more from the ending, but still wasn't disappointed.

    I do apologize for my delay in getting here.