Doom wasn’t the only one crafting plans, however – and Fred was already putting his into motion.
"Hello," Fred said into the phone. "Ean? This is Fred from HR."
"Uh… hi?" Ean said on the other end of the line. "What’s up?"
Fred grinned and leaned back in his chair. "I understand you were let go last week, but I thought you’d like to know that since you were fired for tardiness instead of over that sexual harassment mess, you’re eligible for rehire."
"Rehire?" Ean asked warily. "Are things not working out with Rachel?"
"Oh, no," Fred assured him. "Rachel is doing great. But when you left it opened up a position we had to fill, so she’s currently doing great at your old job. And that means we need someone to fill in for her junior programming associate position. Which, according to my records, you’ve applied for. More than once. So why don’t you get back over here, ASAP, and we’ll get you started on that."
"Uh…" Ean said.
"Great," Fred replied – and hung up.
Then he chuckled. Ean would drive Doom to crazed self-destruction. And Ean couldn’t go near Rachel without knowing he’d get fired again. So while Doom was distracted, Fred would have her to himself again.
"That’s right," Fred said to the memory of his earlier encounter with Doom. "You need help, do you? But you’re going to bitch about me not doing my job when you got the person I picked transferred? And then you’re going to threaten me with a cup of coffee to the face?" Fred snorted. "Well suck it, asshole: HR trumps IT."