Memo to the Department of Ethereal Essays, from The Boss:
Staff meeting today at ten A.M.. Be there. No excuses.
Reply from Gabe’s desk:
Boss, I’ve got so much writing to do. Can’t you excuse me this time?
Memo to the Department of Ethereal Essays:
Absolutely not. Pick up the intercom.
“I didn’t give you any new writing assignments.”
“I know Sir. I’m jotting down a few ideas to help out Mr. Johnson. He’s scheduled to be here soon, and I thought I would make things pleasant for him in the meantime. Maybe even write a little poem for him. You could send it to him in a dream. I bet he’d even believe he thought it up himself. Isn’t that a grand idea?”
“How many times do I have to tell you that you don’t get to make those kinds of decisions?
Mr. Johnson will deal with what he is given. I’ll see you in an hour.”
“Please listen, Sir. It’s just that I feel sorry for him, losing Mrs. Johnson earlier this year. Now he’s ill, and his children are already fighting over his estate.”
“Of course I’ll listen, but you need to stop worrying about Mr. Johnson. He talked to Me for a long time last night. Everything is fine.”
“What about Sally Henderson? Have you decided if she’ll she be joining us today? I’ll need to write up her accomplishments for you to take a look at.”
“Gabe, surely you know better than that. I already know everything she’s done or hasn’t done.”
“I’m aware of that Sir, but I thought it might make things convenient for you. She seems so sad. When she gets here, can we have The Loved Ones Gone Before Committee meet her? I think that would make her happy.”
“She will arrive momentarily, and the LOGB Committee is waiting on her. Pete is at the gate with them now. She’s coming in with six thousand others.”
“Six thousand others? Oh my. Was there an earthquake? Well, whatever it was, I wish I had known. I haven’t got any welcome speeches written. I’m sure Mike hasn’t contacted Regal Rebirth Realty yet, either. The new arrivals will need to be taken to their mansions soon.”
“Welcome speeches won’t be necessary, and their mansions are ready. I’ve got this all taken care of.
“By the way, you’ll need to bring your essay on harp repair with you to the meeting. I hope you can find it.”
“Sir, I lent my harp repair essay out to the Seraphim Symphony last week. They haven’t returned it yet. Perhaps I could bring my article on Cloud Dusting?”
“I know you lent out your essay. I was just testing you. I’ll just touch any harps that need repair. They’ll be good as new. Do bring plenty of note paper with you, though. Mike is giving a presentation entitled, ‘Soul Protecting. You Can Make a Difference.’ You’re going to want to take lots of notes. I ‘ll need you to present it to the guardian staff later.”
“The guardians aren’t coming to the meeting?”
“No, they’re extremely busy right now. Things are a mess in the trenches.”
“Sir, Mike just walked in. We’re going over a few last minute things before the meeting. Anything you would like me to pass along to him?”
“I’m well aware that Mike is there. Tell him not to hold you up.”
“Right. We’ll be there shortly.”
“You will be late. No need for you and Mike to waste time going over anything. I wish I could get through to you both that I am in control. You don’t have to worry about who’s coming, when they’ll arrive, or anything else.
"The thing is, Gabe, I enjoy your company. You’re a good poet, composer, and technical writer, but I really don’t have to have you do those things for me. I just desire them from you. I know you understand.
"See if you can hurry Mike along a little, will you? He does tend to be long-winded.”
“We’ll be right along, Sir.”
“No, you won’t, but I’ll be here anyway, waiting patiently as always. You and those kids on earth are a lot alike.”
Betty, this is purely delightful. I loved it beginning to end. One very small suggestion I would make is to put the "By the way" paragraph with the preceding paragraph, since all the other paragraphs are alternating with two different speakers. This is well worthy of publication. I put it with my favorites.
I love it, love it, love it! Did I mention how I just love this story? If I didn't then let me take the time now to tell you how much I just love this article!! If asked why I am smiling today, I'll just have to blame you and this story! Thanks!!!!!!