Jennifer Gilby Roberts

Women's Fiction/Chick Lit Author

Mel Flash Fiction #3: The Office Christmas Party

on May 14, 2014

This mini story takes place after The Dr Pepper Prophecies, previous flash fiction and the book I’m writing now (no spoilers).

You can also read this on Wattpad.


Mel’s Diary

23 December

I’ve got a bit of a hangover today.  Last night it was the office Christmas party.  With all the trimmings.

It started badly, with the Secret Santa.  Some bright spark had decided that, as well as a name, we should also pick a colour and an adjective to describe our present.  I got ‘pink’ and ‘hard,’ which wasn’t a good start.

The name I picked was ‘Jerry W.’  Now, it so happens that there are two Jerrys in the office.  I thought I was buying for Jerry in marketing, who’s young, has a wicked sense of humour and is completely shameless.  So, I bought him some love beads.  I knew they’d give him a good laugh and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he actually gave them a go.

Unfortunately, it turned out that I was buying for Jerry in Accounts.  He’s forty-odd, has no sense of humour and – judging by his reaction – may well be in the closet.  He went ballistic.  I can’t tell you how grateful I was that the Secret Santa was anonymous.

After someone had calmed him down and the rest of the presents had been given out, we returned to our office.  I work at a PR firm, but I’m PA to Helen who’s head of the events team.  We have our own little cupboard office, which leads into a bigger one with four other people in it: Simon, Gav, Tara and Amy.

Anyway, an email came round the whole building from the Big Boss (her PA, more realistically) saying that the photocopier room was going to be closing in one hour due to “abuse at last year’s Christmas party.”  No prizes for guessing what that was.  Moments after this message came through, Simon and Gav (who are currently friends) looked up from their PCs, exchanged a look and left the room together.  A short time later, the entire building was emailed two pictures of photocopied male genitalia.  I suspect these events are not unrelated, especially since Simon and Gav then disappeared to the pub for the rest of the afternoon.  They’re just lucky that everyone in IT was already too drunk to track who’d sent it.

Tara was deeply offended (or so she said).  Amy and I passed a happy half hour trying to decide which one belonged to whom.

The actual party started off quite dull, but, once most of the staff had drunk half their body weight in alcohol, things livened up.  Simon and Gav reappeared and set about their apparently traditional bet on who could snog the most women from the office.  Amy and I were required to keep score.  Simon was in the lead, but then Gav hit on Simon’s ex which was Against The Rules and they ended up having a fist fight on the conference table.  Then someone from the Big Boss’s office turned up, having apparently worked out that it was they who had sent the aforementioned email, and that was the last of them we saw that night.

I’m not entirely sure if they’ll still be there after Christmas.

This done, I took Amy under my wing and introduced her to Malcolm from Design who I’d been certain ever since I started was perfect for her.  And they got on brilliantly!  They spent ages sitting together and chatting (I wasn’t spying on them, obviously.  I was just… keeping an eye out) and I’m pretty sure they left together.  I can’t wait to see Amy after Christmas and find out what happened.

After that, all was peaceful and quiet.  Right up until news went round that the Big Boss’ PA had been caught in the stationery cupboard with the Head of Marketing.  The good news is, these two are married.  The bad news is, not to each other.  Someone snapped a photo and it zipped from one mobile to another all round the party until it reached the aforementioned Head of Marketing.  He stormed up to the top of the room, yelled at the DJ to ‘Shut the f**k up’ and demanded to know who had taken the photo.  Strangely enough, no one volunteered this information.  But, given that it was immediately beamed onto the big screen behind him, I’m leaning towards someone in IT.

At this point, the office party was declared over.  So, we all went down the pub.  Two hours later, I called Will to tell him I loved him.  I wish I could remember what happened in between.


Previous Mel flash fiction:

The Toaster

The Flight


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