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320

You bend your neck down and peer at the lamp. It doesn't smell like it has oil or anything else in it. It seems to give off warmth, probably from being exposed to the sun after you pulled the tapestry back. Now that you are much closer to it, you can see that it is actually dirty. There are grimy spots on it in a few places. Without consciously thinking about it, you rub your mane and cheek against the lamp. The spots disappear and a thin wisp of smoke comes out of the top. Surprised, you step back.

The smoke gets thicker and goes from black to a pale blue. The lamp is shaking! You are afraid now and just as you think you will gallop away, a whoop of joy comes from inside the lamp.

"Free! I'm free!"

As you stare in disbelief, a tall wispy figure emerges. It is a man, or at least it looks male. His skin is pale blue and he's very muscular, though he looks like he is made out of the air itself. He has long curly black hair and very light blue eyes. In one ear, he wears a silver hoop. He's dressed only in black flowing pants and carries a huge scimitar. What IS this?!

He looks at you and smiles. "You! You are the one who has set me free! Thank you, thank you, a thousand thank you's!"

You stare.

"My name is Alzeed," the blue man continues. "And since you have set me free, I will grant you three wishes!"

"Are you for real!?" you ask Alzeed.

He laughs. "I am a Djinn, a genie of the air. I have been trapped in that lamp for ages. And yes, I am "for real," as you say. But I have many things to do! Please, allow me to grant your wishes and depart. What shall be your first wish, hmm?" He looks you over.

"Not a very pleasant form, I would think," he comments. "Shall that be your first wish, my master? Shall I transform you into another shape? I can make you into anything, anything you desire!" He smiles, and it lights up his face. "You were human once, were you not? Would you like that again? Or would you prefer something else? A sphinx? A werewolf? A dragon? Say the word and I will grant your desire!"

You gulp. Whatever you might have imagined when you rubbed the lamp, it wasn't this! But now you have three wishes. You can wish for anything, anything at all. The power makes you dizzy.

Alzeed is right: you don't really want to be a horse anymore. But what to choose? You remember being human: now that you think about it, you liked being human. But a dragon! An elf! There are so many choices! "Give me ten minutes to think," you tell Alzeed.

He sighs, but it is a good-natured sigh. "You are the master. And at least I can fly around now!" And he proceeds to do just that while you lean against a wall and ponder.

Ten minutes later, he flies to your side, gently rubbing your mane. "Well, master?"

"I have made my decision!" You tell him.


By:  Nocturnias

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