Short Story: An Employee’s Worth

Genre: fantasy
Related to Different Views and Magic Trick.


I was born with one brown eye and one black one. The brown eye sees things as they are, and although the black one does not always see the things in front of me, it can see much more.

It sees the past.

Looking at the past is different from looking at the present. There is only one present, and just like everyone else, my brown eye sees only what is in front of me.

The past, on the other hand, is so much more vast than the present. The same patch of land has been walked by so many people and creatures at different times. How do I know if the dog licking the hot dog off the ground was there two years ago or just two hours past?

I can only see the past. I can’t hear anything, nor does the past come with convenient time stamps. Despite what other people may think, I do need to do a lot of searching and detective work to zoom in on exactly what I’m supposed to look for. If what I do appears to be effortless, it’s because I’ve had a lot of practice.

“Regardless, my pay should not be dependant on the amount of effort it takes me to do the job, but the fruits of my work. In fact, my pay should increase, since I can and often carry out the work of a whole team by myself,” I say as I carefully read the speech Uncle James prepared for me earlier.

“We will take your feedback under consideration,” the HR manager says before dismissing me. Uncle James joins me outside the room soon after.

“How did I do?” I ask. Instead of ruffling my hair as usual, Uncle James pulls me to his side in a one-armed hug.

“You did great. Now it’s up to them to decide if they want to keep you or not, because I know a lot of other branches who will pay double or triple what you’re getting now for what you do. You can go anywhere. Don’t stay just because of me.”

“I’m not staying just for you,” I say.

A smile cracks through his solemn frown. “You know what I mean.”

“I know what you mean, but I like it here.”

“Well, you’re still young, so money doesn’t mean the same thing to you as it does to us. And that’s perfectly fine. You’re already way ahead of your peers in terms of finances. Just keep doing what you’re doing. I’ll make sure you don’t get bullied.”

“Thanks, Uncle James.”

Looking at the past isn’t as easy as people think, but it’s still easier than what everyone else needs to do to achieve the same results, so really, whatever decision the HR team makes, I can’t complain.

But if Uncle James thinks otherwise, who am I to stop him? I’m sure I’ll appreciate the extra cash one day.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s