Day 3

MYSTERY COOKIE

One Day you come into work and find a cookie mysteriously placed on your desk. Grateful to whoever left this anonymous cookie, you eat it. The next morning you come in and find another cookie. This continues for months until one Day a different object is left—and this time there’s a note.

***

I was in a hurry that first morning, and I nearly did not notice it. One of the partners, Mrs. Cynthia Allred, had requested that I see her in the conference room about the Daley’s contract which was not even nearly finished, well it was, but I did not have a chance to triple check it and I was flustered. There was so much to do and so little time. I consulted my handy appointment tracker and sure enough I had a two hour appointment with Mr. Daley in approximately 45 minutes. I knew what needed to be done, but there were too many cases on my hands these days. I dumped my Gucci tote upon my office desk, plopped down in front of the computer and begun the minor edits. Within five minutes, I was on my way to the conference room ready give Mrs. Cynthia all the details before our fussiest client got there.

It was not until after that dreary meeting with Mr. Daley about his marital issues and his wife’s demands that I noticed it. It was like a tiny glimmer of hope, in a bad day. I had not even eaten lunch because there were eleven cases awaiting my attention and only three were making headway. Not to mention, Mr. Daley had a lot to say about his wife and her desire to drain every asset he possessed. That was certainly thrilling to bear through.

It lay like a beautiful rose in the midst of thorns on the desk in my office. I eyed it cautiously, wondering where it came from as my stomach growled, begging me to have it.

I questioned my secretary, Nancy, about it and she had no idea who left me this delicate piece of deliciousness. Clearly she was not doing her job properly. My stomach lurched in protest again as I withheld the beautifully made cookie from it.

Without even thinking about whether or not it was a ploy to have me poisoned or killed, because God knows the amount of people I have angered in my career over the years, I took that first bite. I felt like Eve eating the forbidden apple. It was invigorating and scrumptious.

I could tell immediately that it was double dark chocolate with white chocolate bits and a hint of spearmint, just the way I liked it. For all of the minute I took to devour the tummy tingling greatness, all my problems had disappeared. It was gone in the wind and never to be seen again. Until, of course, there was no more crunchy deliciousness to douse my problems. Then it was back to the reality of contracts, wills, testimonials and deeds to mull over.

The next morning there was another cookie awaiting me on the top of my pile of files to work on for the day. If I did not question it enough the day before, I certainly questioned it now!

While my taste buds celebrated, my mind whirled at the possibilities. When I asked Nancy about it again, she still knew nothing or pretended not to know. Either way, she was annoying me. She not only was slacking in her duty to monitor who came into my office, but my files were always late, and always had some grammatical or spelling error which would force me to do it over. It really was frustrating. I munched on the triple chocolate goodness as I settled myself in to do my day’s work. I had six appointments with clients that day and I needed to file several affidavits and subpoenas at the court, all before 1pm. I just hoped Nancy could keep up with me.

By the third week, I expected nothing less than my cookie to be awaiting me on my desk every morning, and so it was. After two months, I was so accustomed to it, that it became part of my daily routine to munch down the cookie as I settle down to start work each morning. Every night, I even prayed for my anonymous cookie deliverer, and asked God never to let anything horrible happen to them, because I would not get my cookie every day!

It was a gloomy morning when even though I searched through my entire desk, I couldn’t find the cookie! The date was Monday 1st May, 2013 and I was devastated! I sat dejected on my armchair as I mulled over what I had done to stop receiving my daily treat that I had grown to cherish. My first thought was that my prayer to keep my secret cookie deliverer safe had crumbled and I would never know who they were. However, I quickly dismissed the thought and mulled over other options until I chided myself for being so petty. It was just a cookie and I would survive this, I was sure. There were other cookies in the bakery. I chuckled to myself at that thought.

I sighed, letting out all my disappointment and resolved to get into my work. As I lifted the Dereck family’s case file about to stick my nose into getting those two boys back with their parents, a small silver package tied with gold ribbon fell to the floor. Curious, I retrieved it. There was a small elegant card attached, on which “Congratulations!” was printed in gold ink. The inside of the card read:

“Ms. Darrow,

Congratulations on your promotion to Partner. Please join me in my office upon receiving this. There is much to discuss.

P.S. I have a box of your favourite cookies for you.

Best of Regards,

Cynthia.”

By the time I was finished, my heart felt as though it was in my throat. I gaped at the card, re-read it, and read it again! My eyes welled with tears of joy. I opened the package to find a very classy gold pin which I recognized as the Chinese symbol for strength. Mrs. Allred and all the partners always wore it. I was amazed that this was truly happening to me. I made Partner!

I waited three minutes for my heartbeat to obtain a steady pace before heading over to Mrs. Allred’s office, only to have it pick up the same momentum on the short walk there. Before I could knock, alerting her of my presence, she waived me in and her secretary out.

“Ah, Ms. Darrow, you got my package I presume?” she stood as she greeted me.

“Yes! Mrs. Allred, I don’t know what to say!” was all I could manage in that moment.

“Say yes! You’re one of our most dedicated and hard-working employees, and you deserve this! And please call me Cynthia,” she said as she straightened out her skirt. “Come, sit. Let’s chat. Oh and here’s your box of cookies as promised!” she beamed as she handed me the clean white box filled with the delicious cookies.

“Oh thank you so much Mrs. Al…uhh…Cynthia!” I gushed, “These are my favourite!”

“Yes, yes. I know,” she smiled a knowing smile, “you never stop telling us! I thought it would be a nice treat for you for the past four months. When Albert made partner we gave him candy canes for four months even though it was the beginning of the year! Jessica got roses, and I got a slice of cherry cheesecake with cinnamon!” She continued, “Now, you’re bound not to tell the others, least they make partner.”

I was officially thrilled. Cynthia gestured towards the sofa, “Common, let’s get down to business…” and with that I officially became partner at Horace and Gineva Law Firm and I had an entire box of my favourite cookies! What more can a girl ask for?

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