For a few hours this evening I was rather worried that I was going to be entirely too tired to write anything that anyone could possibly enjoy reading. After having a busy day yesterday, and a late night, I was up before 6am this morning and in work for 7.30am. By the end of the day, all I wanted to do was come home and crawl up in bed...
But, the 30 day writing challenge kept me going and, with the help of several cups of tea (and some rather sugary doughnuts), I mustered up enough energy to get me through Day 10's challenge - The Interview.
“Ah, come in,” said the interviewer, looking up with the faintest hint of an almost entirely insincere smile, “please, take a seat.”
Othrod closed the door behind him and nervously shuffled across the room before sliding himself into the large, green leather chair that lay opposite the interviewer’s oak desk. He folded his hands neatly on his lap and waited patiently while the interviewer, an old man with a scraggly grey beard, read through a sheet of paper upon which was written something in an archaic scrawl.
“Hmm,” said the interviewer as he read his way through the notes, his long fingers steepled delicately beneath his chin.
Othrod, remembering having once been told that the golden rule in interviews was to only talk when you were asked a direct question, stayed silent and let the interviewer read on. Finally, after a few minutes of rather awkward silence, the man put the paper to one side and looked Othrod up and down.
“Othrod is it, eh?”
“Well Othrod, why don’t we get started with you telling me about your greatest strength.”
“My greatest strength,” said Othrod uncertainly, “is that I am very strong.”
“Good,” smiled the man and marked a tick on a fresh piece of paper. “And how about your greatest weakness?”
“Umm,” said Othrod and scratched his head absently, before remembering that this was sometimes considered a rather poor exhibition of manners in an interview. “Don’t really know.”
“No known weaknesses,” intoned the man, jotting a line of text below the initial tick. “Good, good.”
“Now, I can see from your resume that you’ve had quite some experience but I was wondering what would you consider to be your real area of specialty?
Othrod rocked his head from side to side in thought, “I think I would have to say my specialty is the bloodletting.”
“Bloodletting. Right.” said the man, before looking up. “And can you perhaps narrow that down for me a little?”
“Not really, no.”
“I see, more of a generalist,” said the man and wrote it down on the paper, “Alright, can you tell me what the reason was for you leaving your last job?
“You were fired?”
“Oh no,” replied Othrod, earnestly, “My employer was terminated.”
“Ah, of course,” smiled the man. “Agasith the Merciless – what was it?”
“Think it was a hero.”
“A hero? Bloody typical,” sighed the man, “always out and about doing their heroic deeds with little thought for the immense strain that they place on the livelihoods of us Dark Lords.”
Othrod nodded in what he hoped was a sympathetic fashion.
“And who were you working for before that?”
“Margaath the Vile.”
“Oh, lovely man,” smiled the interviewer, “Just lovely. It was such a shame about that whole business with the fire demon. I assume that’s when you left his employment?”
“Yes, of course,” said the man, “It does tend to be rather difficult to be an effective Evil Wizard when your arms and legs have been melted off.”
“And I see before that, that you interned with Grabalob the Unjust.”
“Just for six months.”
“Still, it’s a good name to have on your resume. Grabalob might no longer be the supreme force of ungodly terror that he once was, but he’s still one of the premier employers out there.”
The man folded the paper to one side and looked hard at Othrod.
“Well, I think I may have an opportunity for you. It would have to be an entry position, I’m afraid – which might be off putting for an Orc with so much experience – but times are hard at the moment. Ever since the magical downturn, well we’ve been fighting for scraps frankly. Would that be a problem?”
“No, no,” said Othrod, working hard to contain a grin.
“Good, because I’m pretty sure this recession is only going to be short term. We just need to make sure, in the meantime, that we to try to fight smarter, not harder – same amount of work, less minions. Mark my word, downsizing is really going to be the way forward in this industry.”
“So, with that said, I can offer you a rank and file position, frontline battalion, probably have you using, oh, an axe. You get full accommodation in a shared employee dungeon situated directly below my Dark Tower. There’s no pension, no health care plan and no real pay to mention, but you do get all the entrails you can eat.”
“Excellent,” smiled the man, “Well, I think you’re going to fit in just fine here. If I could just get you to sign here in blood, we’ll go and introduce you to the rest of the team and get you issued with a company loincloth…”