The Adventures of Scott and Mirror Man [Part III]

It took him less than an hour to forge his rope launcher, which consisted of a length of washing line, the base of an office chair which he convinced himself would provide a counter-weight and the aforementioned coat hanger. Google had suggested several interesting knots, in the end though he settled for the knot he’d been using to tie his shoes for years. It seemed a sensible knot, no nonsense and to his memory it had never let him down. Well there was that one time at a festival when he’d walked through a field and his shoes had not followed him.
Mud was a worthy foe, but he supposed that one didn’t encounter much mud whilst soaring majestically through the air.
A good 10 feet from his window there was a perfect test subject. For as long as Scott could remember there had been an Oak Tree in his garden. It had supported childhood dens, acorns, a pair of suspiciously aware squirrels and now it would support him in his first venture into Superherodom.
It took Scott three throws to get the legged end of his rope launcher around a bough of the tree. The first attempt smashed unceremoniously against the bricks of the downstairs extension. The second nearly boomeranged back into his face as he yanked it back up. The third curled over the branch. Satisfying. A few tugs and he was sure there was a secure connection to the tree. Placing the hook of his coat hanger over the rope he inspected the storey drop before launching himself enthusiastically all of 5 foot.
Unfortunately Scott had failed to take into account the effect of weight and gravity. As he hung halfway between the tree and his bedroom window he had ample opportunity to consider the merits of Newton. In either direction there was a steep incline towards safety.
For a few moments he weighed up calling the fire brigade, though the ensuing conversation about how he ended up hanging 10 foot in the air between a tree and a window outweighed the positive outcome of being saved.
Humans were sturdy, right?

No one knew how Scott ended up breaking both his ankles, the office gossip was that he’d owed money to one of the less pleasant payday loan companies. Someone had even suggested that he might have been taken hostage like that guy from Misery.
Mirror Man had taken the opportunity that Scott’s empty desk provided to pursue his own goals. Day by day more mirrors had appeared, there even seemed to be some kind of blow torch, though this was strictly prohibited by health and safety. When Mirror Man pulled a metal welding mask over his balaclava a few of the more sensitive employees decided that he was a threat to their well being and requested a desk transfer.
It took HR 3 weeks to respond.

In every office there is no interview more pointless than the one that is scheduled to coincide with a return to work. After spending weeks calling in sick; wasting precious time delivering a hospital note and the unmissable casts around his legs it seemed obvious to Scott that the reason he’d been off work was his unfortunate dally with gravity. Gravity had been especially unforgiving. Still, Scott had told his team leader that he’d been run over by a car, and that was the story he was sticking to.
“So Scott, why were you absent from work?”
Not for the first time Scott contemplated the downfall, nay the complete annihilation of his team leader.
“Well, I was hit by a car. I broke my legs.”
“I see. And how do you feel that you can prevent yourself being off again?”
“Not get run over by cars?”
“Very good, and what impact do you think your absence had on your work colleagues and the business?”
“On the first day of my absence my colleagues began to weep bitterly. Over time the tears caused condensation which infiltrated the thin clients. One by one they exploded, setting off a company wide power cut. Several clients, who could not register their claims became so angry they lost all sense of sanity and began destroying everything in their vicinity. Anger spread until a national incident became international. Someone punched the French President. Nukes were launched. A nuclear winter began, causing the downfall of mankind as we know it.”
Moments passed as anticipation honed Scott, hungry for the impending fallout, the moment he could rip back his mask and become the man he really was. The man who was going to save humanity.
“The printer ran out of paper, some files were inputted incorrectly.”
The anti-climax slumped his shoulders, coiling into the defeated silhouette of those who have been drained by office life and are but husks of themselves.
It was definitely time to take action. The team leader was just trying to save himself, to prevent their final confrontation.
It was time to utilise the Office Grump.

They said that the Office Grump had once been a bear, that now he wore a man’s skin. Scott was fairly certain that a degree of bear remained, so he elected to move The Grump’s desk late into an evening shift. Only, when The Grump’s questionably flowery mug had been situated on the desk next to the team leader’s, could Scott relax. Soon his master plan would come into play.
Tomorrow and for the rest of his working life the team leader would have The Grump to contend with.
If you have ever watched a horror movie within the last twenty years you will know the deep, resonate note of impending doom. This was the sound The Grump made for 7 hours out of 8. Sometimes the Grump went on lunch.
Whether it was the computer equipment, the actions of other employees or the work itself The Grump’s voice was a constant nagging sensation, that bordered on physical attack. Words soon began to lose all sense, melding into a dirge that took on the properties of a magical spell. An hour listening to The Grump could drain a man’s soul. The Grump seemed oblivious of his effect on the team leader. With each jagged pause of typing and thousand mile stare the team leader directed at The Grump, Scott’s joy grew. From the safety of the furthest desk along the bank Scott could observe the beautiful destruction of his nemesis’s mind, one complaint at a time.

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