Chapter 16 – The Return of Skambintojo.

“Guys, it’s not looking good.” the team leader looked worried as he addressed his team of tech support agents who had gathered in the small meeting room. “Our numbers are down, way down. We need to bring them up immediately. We don’t want to upset S-, I mean, The-Manager-Who-Gets-Mad-When-We-Say-His-Name.”

The agents looked worried except for Fred, who looked annoyed. That was the third time the team leader nearly said the manager’s name.

I know the manager’s name, Fred thought. I’m not afraid to say it. Correct yourself like that one more time and I will say it, right here, right now.

“So when we get back to the phones, bear in mind that the dialer will be running faster than usual so we can catch up. That way our numbers will improve and S-, I mean, The-Manager-Who-Gets-Mad-When-We-Say-His-Name will be in a much happier frame of mind.”

“Say, who is The-Manager-Who-Gets-Mad-When-We-Say-His-Name?” Fred spoke up. “Skambintojo?”

Suddenly the entire room shook as the walls took a direct hit from some unseen being on the other side of the wall.

“DON’T SAY IT!” shrieked the team leader.

“Say what?” Fred retorted. “Skambintojo?”

The entire room shook again with another jarring punch from behind the wall, and a tiny crack began to form on the wall. The team leader’s eyes widened with terror. “Fred, do NOT say that name again!”

Fred looked up at the team leader. “Was that-?”

“Yes,” the team leader looked furious. “Say his name once more and he will reveal himself in a manner which cannot be unseen! The sight of his presence will burn itself into your eyes forever and there is no way you can ever get rid of it! I am warning you! You do not want to see him! DO NOT SAY HIS NAME AGAIN!”

Fred stood up. It was time for everyone to hear the truth.

“Bob Smith,” Fred began. “I can say that name, right? He was the agent who worked here years ago, slammed hard with nonstop calls and driven beyond his wits, beyond the borders of sanity.”

“What does that have to do with S-, I mean The-Manager-Who-Gets-Mad-When-We-Say-His-Name?”

“He was angry,” Fred continued, “Not just at the managers, but at everyone for failing to speak up. None of the agents could handle the heavy work load yet they said nothing and it got no better, in fact, it got much, much worse. That was beyond what Smith could handle and he began plotting his revenge.”

The team stared at Fred in silence.

“Fred carried out his plans for revenge by doing well at his job, in fact, he did so well that he began working his way up the ladder at a swift pace. SME, Team Leader, Supervisor, he kept going until he reached where he wanted to be. The manager of the entire call room. That’s where he unleashed his revenge, making working conditions next to impossible and causing agents to break into fits of rage so they could join his ever growing Army of Deranged Agents. His plan was flawless, except he needed a name to invoke fear. A name like ‘Bob Smith’ hardly has that effect, so he changed it. He went online and translated the word ‘Caller’ to Lithuanian. And do you know what the translated word is?”

The team leader’s eyes widened with terror. “DON’T SAY IT!”

“SKAMBINTOJO!” Fred bellowed.

The walls in the meeting room exploded to fragments of sheet rock as Skambintojo and his Army of Deranged Agents stampeded into the room from all directions.

Fred took one look at Skambintojo and let out a scream of terror.

Greasy black hair. An oily face spotted with pimples. Glasses with thick, black plastic frames. A red shirt with white polka dots. Purple pants with green vertical stripes that stopped short of his ankles. One black sock. One white sock. A pair of black platform shoes.

“All righty then,” Skambintojo greeted the terrified agents. “You heard your boss. Let’s get your numbers up and make me proud!”

The agents all screamed in unison, their shrill voices united as a single choir to reflect the atmosphere of fear in the room. Truly, things could not get any worse than this.


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