Bob took a gulp of decaf and spit it right back out. He couldn’t believe it had gone cold already. How long had he been sitting there staring at his laptop? It was time he faced the fact that he was not prepared for this meeting. It was too late to do anything about it now.

He was going to work on the project Friday but he woke up with a scratchy throat. He came in anyway to stay on the good side of his evil boss. No sense in drawing that kind of attention to himself. By noon the bug had hit him full force and he went home early.

The weekend was a total loss as well, not that Bob liked to spend his weekend working. It might have been better than two days spent filling Kleenex with tons of snot and searching the internet for self-care tips. What a way to live.

Fortunately, he was feeling better today. If it weren’t for that meeting, that is. No sense dwelling on it now, of course. What’s done is done. Or not, as the case may be. He would just have to own up to it and face the boss’s wrath.

He reached for the project file and the flashing blue light on his phone caught his eye. He picked it up to plug in his code, knowing he had no time for this. He didn’t want to be unprepared and late, too.

His fingers didn’t talk to his brain first, though. They moved of their own accord. The phone lit up, revealing a terse message. It was Bob’s boss.

“Meeting cancelled. Going home sick.”

Author’s Note:

This was a flash fiction contest entry. The object was to use five words that are different words when spelled backward. I had to do some searching to find words that would work, since I couldn’t come up with any on my own. As soon as I saw tons/snot I knew I had my story. Spit/tips was just icing on the cake.