Content warnings for this story (click here for guide):
Mimi always arrived early to deal with the post and make sure everything was in order before the rest of the office arrived. Today, though, when she opened the door and went to disarm the alarm, she found it already done.
“I don’t think I forgot…” she murmured to herself, concerned.
A light was on, though, so someone had simply come in early. She wandered through to say hello and was surprised to see Karly installed at her pink desk, working away beneath the jangly mobile.
Wonders will never cease, thought Mimi.
“Morning Karly!” she said cheerily, and her boss looked up quickly.
“Yes?” she said. “Is something wrong?”
“Nothing,” said Mimi. “Just never expect to see anyone here when I get in. Do you want a coffee?”
Karly thought for a moment. She was already feeling full after her Gaia smoothie.
“No.” She nearly added “thanks” then thought better of it.
“No problem. Just call if I can help at all,” Mimi beamed, noting Karly’s dainty puff sleeves and primrose-yellow smock dress, as well as the shiny plastic shoes kicking underneath the desk.
Karly didn’t answer but pretended to be absorbed in a spreadsheet.
Mimi sorted through the information and lunch orders for the board meeting. Executives had the fussiest dietary requirements: keto, palaeo, 5:2…it really was like babysitting.
Oh, interesting! She looked at a late order someone had emailed in. Hadn’t realised they were coming. Well, this should put the cat among the pigeons.
Pete came in, yawning.
“Late night?” Mimi asked, offering a biscuit.
“Got an email at 2am complaining that the system had lost a presentation. Guess who.”
He stretched and groaned.
“Yeeeup. So I had to use her instructions and make it all back up.”
Fran stumbled in, bleary-eyed.
“What happened to you?” asked Mimi.
“Don’t ask. Actually, do. Got an email about 2am telling me to source some gifts to be couriered over for the meeting.”
“And you did it?”
“Sure,” said Fran. “I mean, humans don’t really NEED sleep. That’s just Big Bedlinen propaganda. Anyway, a dozen monogrammed notebooks are on their way. If you need me, I’ll be snoozing on my desk.”
“Karly’ll be able to see you,” warned Mimi.
“I’ll be fine till noon when she arrives.”
Mimi shook her head.
“She’s already in and beavering away.”
Pete and Fran were speechless.
“It is a first,” admitted Mimi. “But I got the feeling she came in early to avoid…scrutiny…”
A smile crept over Fran’s face. “Maybe I’ll go and ask her about those notebooks…”
Karly shuffled uncomfortably in her seat, hearing the rustle between her legs. She wore a pair of ruffled knickers over the top of the protection, which matched her overdress. Self-consciously, she sneaked her froofy skirt up to look at her thick padding.
“You are a woman warrior,” she told herself. “You are the future. You are going to ace this.”
She looked over Pete’s presentation. Not bad. Interesting experiment, seeing just how far she could push them with her newfound power. Anyway, she hadn’t had time to go over the quarterly figures – too boring. Let the number nerds do that. Admittedly, a 2am email had been pretty risky, but he’d delivered. That told her something about her employees’ loyalty. She’d try this periodically, just to make sure they were on her side.
Fran knocked at the door and Karly shoved her skirt back down to cover the plastic.
Fran collapsed in giggles as she passed Mimi’s desk.
“I’m going to hell for this.”
“Hey,” said Mimi, “we all make choices.”
Just then, the first of the board members came in, so Mimi leapt up and began offering them coffee and pastries, and shepherding them to the room.
“Isn’t that Celeste’s job?” hissed Pete.
“Yup,” grimaced Mimi. “Expect her to turn up about a minute before the bloody meeting starts.”
Two minutes, in fairness. Celeste spoke to Mimi only to seek assurance that her lunch order was Zone-Diet-compatible, and to complain that there wasn’t any coconut water available. She then swanned into the meeting room and began to fawn over the bigwigs.
At the last minute, Karly emerged from her office, head held high, and tried to walk with grace toward the room. Fran nudged Mimi as they noticed her awkward waddle, and the way her prissy skirt rode up at the back, giving a hint of the bulky garment underneath. She carried her bear and rabbit with her, a bottle of green juice and a sparkly notebook.
“Well, this should be interesting,” said Fran.
Celeste rolled her eyes as Karly walked in. What WAS that? I mean, that couldn’t actually be couture, could it?
Karly sat down delicately, careful to let herself crinkle and rustle as little as possible. She sipped her smoothie nervously and studied the notes she’d made.
The members of the board paid her extra attention, fascinated by her outfit, and Karly drew confidence from their admiration. The chair opened the meeting.
Three presentations later and Karly was flagging. Not only were they boring, they were taking forever. She could feel her bladder pulsing and straining.
“How about a ten-minute comfort break?” said the chair. “Give everyone a chance to stretch their legs.”
Yes! Karly thought. A chance to dash out to the bathroom.
“Ah, Karly,” said the chair. “Wonder if I could bend your ear while everyone’s grabbing a coffee. We’re thinking about expanding into new territories, and I wanted your take on things. We’re considering a fact-finding trip to LA, and perhaps Tokyo…”
Karly groaned inwardly and sat back down. Normally she’d have been thrilled by the idea of freebie trips to major world cities, but right now she was concerned that she might not be able to hold it much longer.
At last, the chair let her get away to the toilet, and she all but staggered there, desperate to pee. Just as she got inside the stall, a trickle of wee escaped her and Karly tensed up in horror. She fumbled with her outfit, then remembered the dress and knickers were joined up. Contorting to reach the zip at the back of her neck, she overbalanced and plonked noisily down on the toilet, still fully clothed. It was enough to override her control, and Karly shook her head as a flood of wee emptied itself into her pants, swelling her padding within the ruffled knickers.
Oh God, please stop, she thought, grimacing. Please!
Eventually, the stream tapered to a trickle, and Karly was left with a warm, soggy mass around her. Thankfully, her clothes were dry. The protection had worked!
She considered taking off the offending article, but where would she put it? At her own insistence, the office had installed dainty sanitary bins with tiny openings, too small to post larger things into. Besides, what if she had to go again?
Reluctantly, Karly squelched back to the meeting room, chanting quietly to herself and trying to imagine nobody could tell.
When it came to her turn to present, Karly stood tall and took her rabbit and bear with her, drawing on their power. She delivered Pete’s presentation flawlessly and claimed 100% of the credit, as a true boss would.
“Any questions?” she asked.
One executive raised his hand.
“This may not be the right time to ask,” he said, “but why do you have two cuddly toys with you?”
Karly froze. “What?”
“The teddy and the bunny. I just wondered if they were part of the presentation.”
“Um, no. They’re mine. They’re…for me.”
An awkward pause.
The executive smiled like you would at a toddler. Celeste smirked.
Karly felt the self-consciousness wash over her once again and was once again aware of her soggy crotch. “Anything else? No? OK then –“
“I was wondering about the teddy thing too,” said another board member. “It’s a little bit –“
“It’s my teddy – my bear!” blurted Karly. “I don’t think I should have to explain –“
“Oh go on,” said Celeste, with a smug grin. “I’d love to know why you’re always cuddling them.”
“I’m not always cuddling them!” Karly blushed, and a little jet of pee squirted into her padding. No! No!
Panicking, she began to chant quietly to herself.
“I had a question,” said Celeste, “about a sum of money that went out a few weeks ago. Let me see…£10,000…to ‘MaMa Industries’.”
Celeste couldn’t know about the training course. And Karly hadn’t cleared the large transaction with the board!
“I don’t…know…” stumbled Karly, squirming on the spot.
“It’s just marked ‘Po Training’,” said Celeste. “Ring any bells? Only, if we’re audited, this would look very odd…”
A fresh dribble of pee ran into her padding and Karly tensed up, trying to will it to stop.
Just then, a knock came at the door and Old Man Leaper himself strode in.
“Sorry I’m late. Just ran over in a meeting with New York. What did I miss?”
His eye caught Karly, standing at the front.
“What on EARTH are you wearing, Karly? You look like a two-year-old!”
“DADDDDY!!!” Karly turned an even brighter shade of red.
“I just stopped by your office, Karly. It looks like a bloody nursery!”
“DADDDDYYY, it’s inspirational! I have it on very good advice –“
Her father squinted.
“Are you carrying a TEDDYBEAR?”
“That what I asked!” said the first board member.
Karly, unable to move for embarrassment, clung closer to her bunny and teddy. Oh god, she really was dressed like a toddler! She was even wearing – oh god, what was she DOING?
“Ga Ga Ga, Ba Ba Ba, Da Da Da…” she chanted, soaking her nappy again.
Mr Leaper marched up to her, furious that his daughter was messing about in front of the board.
“I hope you’re taking this role seriously, Karly – what IS that smell?”
“Ga Ga Ga, Ba Ba Ba, Da Da Da…” said Karly, louder now. A loud fart escaped her and the room of executives winced and coughed.
Mr Leaper lifted the frilly skirt at the back and grimaced.
“GA GA GA, BA BA BA, DA DA DA…” blathered Karly with tears in her eyes.
“NAPPIES, Karly? You’re wearing nappies? Do you think this is some kind of joke? Or are you even more immature than I suspected?”
“So THAT’s what ‘Po Training’ meant!” said Celeste delightedly.
He sniffed again.
“Dear Lord, have you WET yourself?”
Karly burst into tears and waddled out as fast as she could, fleeing to her office. A second loud fart could be heard, and a “Nooo, not heeeeere! It’s not fairrr!”
Mr Leaper turned to the board.
“I can only apologise,” he said. “Clearly the pressure has gone to my daughter’s head. I fear she’s not up to this role. Or any role that I can think of, to be honest. I’ll try to talk to her, but she had best have a good explanation. Absolutely disgraceful.”
He went to Karly’s office and rapped on the door.
“DON’T!” said a sobbing voice inside.
“Karly Leaper,” said her father sternly, “If you don’t open this door immediately I will show everybody in the office the way we dealt with your tantrums when you were little!”
There was a pause and then a spraying sound. The door opened a little and Karly’s streaked face peered out.
Mr Leaper went into the office and coughed.
“How much air freshener have you sprayed in here? Good grief! It’s like a gas leak!”
Karly retreated and stood behind the desk.
“Sit down, Karly,” said her father.
Karly sat down gingerly, wincing as she did. A squishy sound came from her chair.
“Now Karly,” said her father, “I’d like an explanation of what just hap-“
He wrinkled his nose.
Karly hung her head.
“Karly,” said Mr Leaper. “Stand up please.”
Karly shook her head but her father hauled her to her feet and lifted her fluffy skirt.
The frilled knickers bulged and an unholy smell filled the air.
“Ga Ga Ga, Ba Ba Ba, Da Da Da…” she babbled.
“Karly,” said her father with genuine concern, adopting a voice she’d not heard since she was little: “has someone got a dirty nappy? Does someone need a change?”
“Ga Ga Ga, Ba Ba Ba, Da Da Da…” was all Karly could muster, before wailing her head off.
A snivelling Karly was led out by her father, her bulky nappy obvious now, and a foul pooey smell trailing behind her, Fran felt almost sorry for the brat.
Mimi and Pete watched with her, dazed by the sequence of events.
“Remind me never to fuck with you, Fran,” said Pete. “Ever.”
Fran shrugged, slightly blown away herself.
The board filed out of the meeting room in dull shock and headed for the exit.
“I’ll clear all traces from Karly’s emails,” said Pete.
“And I’ll gather up and shred the leaflets and magazines,” said Mimi.
“Thanks guys,” said Fran. “Ninjas, both of you.”
“Man,” said Pete. “I hope whoever we get next as a boss is better. A lot better.”
Celeste glided to the kitchen, holding her nose performatively. She was already on the phone to someone, drawling, “And then I said ‘Oh! So that’s what Po Training meant!’ I know, right? I know!”
The three friends looked at each other.
“Oh god, no,” said Mimi. “Please, not her…”
“It could well be,” said Fran. “If not today, tomorrow, and if not Celeste, some other godawful brat.”
“It’s pretty depressing,” said Pete.
“It is,” said Fran, “and we’re too good for this place. That’s why I’ve been thinking about starting my own business.”
“Really?” said Mimi.
“I’d need some good partners,” Fran looked at them both, “but I do have a little capital in hand. Or rather, Mahri does. What do you say?”