The Goldbelt

Updated: Jul 30, 2021

Matilda Wormwood was a trouble maker. Everyone in his office seemed to think so. She was odd they said. She came in, a solemn cloud, at 06:30 each morning with thoughts and most words concealed in her headphones. What was she listening to all day? and who did she talk to on those rare breaks? It certainly wasn't a local, after hours she was always alone. His new book keeper was as much a mystery as she was a joy! True, she avoided gatherings like neighborhoods did Jehovah's witnesses, but her work was immaculate.

In a mere month, the 15year old had single handedly organized and perfected 'Expedient's' pre-clearance process. Paul took a bite of his ham and cheese sandwich, making a mental note not to throw up at that morning's run-of-the-mill report. Damn his assistant and her spite! The stats on his screen had more to offer than the papers on his desk. How was she doing it? No shipments had been stuck at borders for weeks on end, with his team shifting blame amongst themselves. And Paul wasn't complaining; his customers were very, very happy. With all the business he'd scooped, getting 'The Goldbelt' mines to cooperate was sure to be easy; the twelve mines were fussy, but even they could appreciate a book keeper with a good head on her shoulders. He ought to put her in the front lines with a sign that reads, 'hey, I'm fast and accurate. Your shipments are safe with me'. Yes, yes......with all this new gold in 'The Goldbelt', or rumours of it, and his book keeper staying busy, Paul Mhettle was bound to make a lot of money.

Matilda was in hell, and everyone in the office didn't seem to notice. How could they? She didn't talk much, and when she did, they said she was odd. Ms. Honey was miles away, and although they talked often on phone, she wasn't there to stop the gossips and their hurtful words; she wasn't there to stop the tyrants and their puppets from upsetting her days. So Matilda hid in her headphones each day, and played on her screen, making sure Mr. Mhettle's trucks moved with no muss or fuss from 'The TransVale' and 'Axis' to 'The Goldbelt' and back. Which was the best part of each day if she was being honest; for every joke about her pittance pay, there were a dozen shipments cleared in no time. And Mr. Mhettle wasn't complaining; he was very, very happy with her work. Proof was in the fat bounty he just gave her. Yes, yes......with all the new shipments coming in, and a happy Mr. Mhettle giving generous rewards for hard work, Matilda Wormwood was set to make a lot of money. Which ought to keep the gossips at bay, at the very least.

The new girl was a problem. She was rude and didn't talk to anyone, but Paul was taking a shine to her. No matter that she was odd. Who did she think she was? Ignoring almost everyone in the office with her headphones and changing the rules. This Matilda Wor.......what was her name again? Lillith Weether roughly shuffled through the staff folders on her desk, till she found a red one with the words 'Matilda Wormwood' on it's cover. At the top right corner was a photo of the new girl; with her jet black hair pulled back into a ponytail, no make up and those ugly glasses, she looked like a high school student. Certainly not Paul's type! What did he see in her? Perhaps Amanda, Matilda's boss and Paul's assistant knew why he'd given her the bonus. Lillith would ask Amanda over lunch; Amanda loved office gossip, actually Paul's assistant's loved gossip in general; and the office loved Lillith! She was the most attractive woman here and the men adored her; they gave her their money.Yes, yes.....Amanda was sure to have the information she wanted, and with that, Lillith could arrange for Matilda Wormwood to disappear, and order would be restored.

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