Holiday Party, flash fiction by Phyllis Souza at
Nicole Michalou

Holiday Party

Holiday Party

written by: Phyllis Souza


Christmas Eve at the “The Record”— a local newspaper

Bob, the office manager dressed as Santa, walked into a large room to scan the cubicles. Then, when he heard Lottie humming “Joy to the World,” he strolled over.

Lottie, tall, sexy, and smart, was tidying her desk.

“Aren’t you going to join the Christmas party?” he asked.

“Wouldn’t miss it.” Lottie lifted her compact and put on candy cane red lipstick, then pursed her lips.

Laughter trickled in from the conference room. She paused, ran her fingers through her long blond hair, then strolled into the room.

People milled about, drinking wine, and chatting. Not Lottie. She stood in the corner pretending to look at her phone.

Even though she was a top reporter, she didn’t quite fit in with the others.

Bob called, “Quiet, everyone! Let’s gather around the tree.”

Strands of lights twinkled, crystals like icicles, and fancy ornaments hung from the branches. Presents with bows and names tags underneath.

Lottie watched as each person opened their presents, revealing such treasures as Christmas mugs, fancy teas, stuffed animals, and cookbooks.

To: Lottie
From: Jill

All eyes focused on Lottie.

“Hmmm… what could this be?” She smiled, revealing her perfect teeth.

“Cute paper, Charlie Brown and Snoopy I hate to open it.”

She shook the package. No noise. No evidence of damage. She glanced at her co-workers. “Should I?”

“Come on. Open it.” Someone called out.

“Okay.” She tentatively pulled on the gold ribbon and ripped off the paper. “What?” Her brows knitted.

“Just what you wished for,” Jill called out with glee.

“A stud finder,” Lottie glared at Jill. “Isn’t this—?”

“Yes! The same one you gave to me at last year’s party.” Jill stuffed another crab puff into her mouth.

Lottie, face turning red, looked around the room. “Humbug!”

Bob laughed. Lottie laughed. And so did Jill.

Everyone laughed. After all, it was Christmas at the Record.

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