My coworker proposed we purchase a $2,000 collective gift for our boss, but now she’s not willing to contribute her portion of the payment

Rachel reluctantly agrees to buy a $2,000 watch for their boss after her colleague Emily promises to split the cost. But when Emily refuses to pay her share, Rachel is left struggling with the unexpected financial burden. Determined to teach Emily a lesson, Rachel devises a clever plan to expose her deceit. But will she succeed in bringing Emily’s dishonesty to light?

“That’s a lot of money, Emily,” I sighed, stirring my coffee slowly.

“Oh, come on, Rachel,” she said, sitting across from me. “Think about it! A $1,600 watch for Mr. Johnson’s birthday would show our dedication. Plus, I’m sure he’ll love the customized engraving. Oh, and with that, the total would be $2,000.”

I took a sip of my coffee, trying to buy some time. “It’s just… that’s a huge expense. Are you sure about this?” I asked.

“Absolutely!” she replied, nodding eagerly. “Trust me, Rachel. It will be perfect. And don’t worry about the cost. We’ll split it, and I promise to pay my half as soon as possible.”

I felt a knot forming in my stomach. I liked Emily, despite her reputation for sucking up to management. She’s always the one staying late, bringing coffee, and organizing events. But this whole watch idea seemed too much, even for her.

“Emily, I don’t know. I have bills to pay, and $2,000 is a lot for me right now,” I said, hoping she’d understand.

“Rachel, this is an investment in our future here,” she insisted, trying to convince me. “Imagine the impression we’ll make! Mr. Johnson will remember this forever, and it could really boost our standing in the company.”

I sighed again. Emily always had a way of making things sound so simple and beneficial.

“Alright,” I said reluctantly, finally giving in. “Let’s get the watch. But please don’t forget what you’ve promised.”

“Of course, Rachel,” she said. “He’ll love the gift!”

Soon, Mr. Johnson’s birthday arrived.

Emily had everything meticulously planned.

She walked into his office first, and I followed, holding my breath.

“Mr. Johnson!” she exclaimed, standing beside his desk. “We have a special surprise for you!”

Mr. Johnson looked up from his paperwork, clearly curious.

Emily handed him the elegantly wrapped box, her eyes shining with pride. “This was our idea,” she said, “but I really pushed for it because I knew it was perfect for you.”

I stood there, smiling awkwardly. Emily opened the box to reveal the watch, and Mr. Johnson’s eyes widened in surprise.

“This is incredible. You really didn’t need to!” he said, examining the watch. “Thank you so much. This is really thoughtful.”

Emily beamed, soaking in his praise. I forced a smile, feeling a pang of regret. I had hoped this gift would be a gesture of teamwork, but it quickly became Emily’s solo performance.

She kept talking about how she had put extra effort into getting the gift for him, which made me realize I had spent a thousand dollars for nothing more than a front-row seat to Emily’s self-promotion.

“This is wonderful, Emily. Thank you again,” Mr. Johnson said.

Emily turned to me with a triumphant grin. “See, Rachel? I told you he’d love it.”

I managed a weak smile. “Yeah, he really does,” I said.

A week passed, but I didn’t hear anything from Emily about her share.

One day, I found her in the break room, chatting away with another colleague. I waited until she was alone before approaching her.

“Hey, Emily,” I started calmly. “I… I just wanted to remind you about your share of the cost of Mr. Johnson’s watch. I have some expenses, and I really need that money right now.”

Emily looked up at me with a condescending smile. “Oh, sweetie, I thought you were just helping out. I never intended to pay. Besides, you earn more than I do, don’t you? Consider it a charitable act.”

“WHAT?” I stared at her, stunned. “What do you mean? You… weren’t you supposed to pay your share?”

“Look, life isn’t fair, Rachel,” she shrugged. “You wanted to make a good impression, and we did. Didn’t you see how happy Mr. Johnson was? Isn’t that worth it?”

I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Her selfishness was astounding. “That’s not the point, Emily,” I said, my voice rising. “You promised to pay your half!”

She laughed. “Oh, Rachel, you’re making a big deal out of nothing. Let it go,” she said and walked away.

I stared at her, anger and frustration bubbling up inside me. Clearly, she had no intention of paying and didn’t care about the impact on me.

So I made up my mind. It was time for some payback.

Two days later, I looked into Emily’s schedule and discovered she had a big presentation for the upcoming quarterly meeting. This was crucial for her, and I saw an opportunity.

I began subtly mentioning to a few trusted colleagues that Emily might need ‘help’ with her presentation.

Word spread quickly, and soon everyone offered her ‘suggestions’ and ‘feedback.’ The result? The conflicting advice overwhelmed her, and I could see her becoming more stressed. She did manage to give the presentation, but it was a huge mess.

I wasn’t done yet, though.

One day, while having lunch in the break room, I overheard Emily bragging about a meeting with a potential big client. She sat at the table, surrounded by a few colleagues, her voice full of confidence.

“This client is huge,” she said, her eyes gleaming. “If I close this deal, I’m sure to get a promotion. Mr. Johnson will be so impressed.”

I listened quietly, my mind already plotting. After lunch, I returned to my desk and found the client’s contact information.

I crafted an anonymous email, attaching screenshots of Emily’s rude social media comments.

“I felt it was important to inform you about some unethical behavior by Ms. Richards who is scheduled to meet with you,” I wrote in the mail to the client. “Please see the attached screenshots of her social media posts, which include rude and unprofessional comments.


A Concerned Individual.”

A few days later, Emily’s face was pale as she entered the office.

“The client canceled the meeting,” she told a colleague. “They said it was due to ‘unforeseen circumstances.’ I don’t know what went wrong!”

“I’m sorry to hear that, Emily,” the colleague replied. “That must be tough.”

Emily sighed and walked away, clearly distressed. Only I knew how hard it was to contain my laugh. But even after going through so much, Emily wouldn’t mend her ways.

She started spreading rumors that she had single-handedly bought the watch for Mr. Johnson. Had she guessed I was behind her canceled meeting and failed presentation? I didn’t know. But I wouldn’t let her succeed.

So, I printed out our email exchange where she promised to pay her half and placed copies on the desks of key people in our department, including HR. The next day, whispers filled the office as people read the emails.

“Can you believe this?” one colleague said, showing the email to another. “Emily promised to pay her half for the watch.”

“Unbelievable,” the other replied. “She’s been taking all the credit.”

Emily’s popularity plummeted, and she looked more stressed than ever. I decided to take it one step further.

Creating a fake online persona as a headhunter from a prestigious company, I sent Emily a message.


Subject: Exciting Job Opportunity

Dear Ms. Richards,” I typed.

“We have been following your impressive work and would love to discuss a potential job opportunity with you at our prestigious firm. We believe you would be a perfect fit for our team. Please let us know if you are available for an interview this Thursday at 10 AM.

Best regards,

Linda J.

Executive Recruiter, El.T.Search.”

Emily’s eyes lit up as she read the email. She ran over to the desk beside me, her excitement barely contained.

“You won’t believe this! I just got an email from a top headhunter. They want to interview me for a high-level position!”

“That’s amazing, Emily!” Stacey, my co-worker, said. “You should definitely go for it.”

Emily called in sick on the day of the fake interview, completely convinced it was real. She dressed in her best business attire and left the house early to be there on time.

The next day, she returned to the office and I overheard her talking to Stacey. “There was no interview,” she said sadly. “I showed up, and no one knew who I was.”

“That’s so strange, Emily. Maybe it was some sort of mistake?”

Emily nodded slowly, still in shock. “Maybe…”

Hardly had she finished talking when Mr. Johnson approached her.

“Emily, we need to talk. Please come into my office,” he said sternly.

Emily’s confidence visibly shook. She followed him, her face pale. I stayed at my desk, straining to hear the conversation from behind my computer.

“Emily, I’ve received some concerning information,” Mr. Johnson began, his tone firm. “Can you explain why our client canceled their meeting with you?”

“I-I don’t know, sir. They said it was due to unforeseen circumstances.”

Mr. Johnson raised an eyebrow. “Unforeseen circumstances? Or could it be because they received an email with screenshots of your unprofessional social media comments?”

Emily gasped. “What? No, I… I didn’t think… I mean, those were private posts!” she gasped, staring at a tablet screen. Maybe Mr. Johnson was showing her the mail.

“They may have been, but they reflect poorly on you and this company,” Mr. Johnson said sharply. “And there’s more. I’ve been hearing rumors that you claimed to have bought the watch for me single-handedly. Is that true?”

Emily’s face turned pale. Her silence said it was true.

“Emily, this behavior is unacceptable. You’ve been manipulating situations and lying to your colleagues. This ends now. You are being demoted, effective immediately. One more misstep and you will be terminated!” Mr. Johnson declared.

Emily emerged from the office, looking defeated. That same day, in a team meeting, Mr. Johnson took off the expensive watch and held it up for everyone to see.

“This gift was meant to symbolize teamwork and appreciation,” he began, “but given the circumstances, I think it’s only fair to return it.”

He then walked over to me and handed me the watch. “I believe this was more of your contribution. Please, you keep it,” he said.

Emily turned beet red as everyone watched. Her scheme had backfired spectacularly, and my efforts to expose her had paid off.

And that was how I got my ultimate petty revenge on a two-faced colleague.

What would you have done?







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