It is never a good idea to insult a genie...
If some well-meaning soul had said that to you, in good faith, any time before this point, you would not have believed them. Who would have believed that genies existed? Not you, of course not - they were just a fairy tale. Something of fiction and fantasy, not of the "real world". You should never have picked up that old pot from the overflowing wheelie bin, surroundings spinning with drink, and staggered to the ground, leering at it like it a prize of great value and did not cage a demon within. Your sleeve rubbed the brass surface into a subtle shine, a gleam rising after years of misuse, and you swore loudly as hot steam hissed from beneath the lid, searing a line of pain across your hand.
If you had known that the being within was a genie, you would not have said the crude and vulgar things that you did, when the steam materialised into a blue-skinned something, muscled like a skilfully carved statue. He frowned after your tirade, for the figure was clearly male, and shook his head despairingly at your insults, saying that punishment was due to you for speaking so.
Punishment? Your mind became hazy, as if you had spent hours laying in the heat of the summer sun, subsequently becoming ill. You looked down at your hands, stumbling backwards with a half-strangled cry - they were not your hands! There was some monstrous growth making them bulge out, more animal than human and coated in a rapidly spreading tawny-gold layer of fur. How could this be? Trying to shriek, your vocal chords rebelled, permitting only a cat-like yowl of pain, you crashed heavily to the broken paving stones, writhing and twisting in unprecedented agony. Your spine cracked ferociously and you feared that it might have snapped in two, but it seemed to be stretching, elongating into a bestial shape...
That was the last you remember of that particular interlude. You blacked out and sank into restless unconsciousness, the sole sound fading into nothingness being a malicious, cruel laugh.
It takes your eyes a few minutes to adjust when you finally awake, blinking blearily in the startlingly bright sunlight. You are in a barren wasteland of a desert, frail looking cacti bearing their way up through the parched soil - the only thing that may be able to find substance in this ruthless land. Shaking your head to clear it (the effort goes in vain with the sun beating down upon your skull) you raise your hand to your head. But...the action does not quite go as you imagined it would and you are compelled to bend your head forward in order for your hand to reach it at all. How very peculiar.
It then comes to your attention that you are lying in a strange position on the ground with your arms curled beneath your body and your legs angled in a way that you would have expected to be painful... However, you are comfortable. Sighing deeply, you cannot make head or tail of this change, until a lengthy, leonine tail swishes behind you, disturbing the sand with the tufted tip.
Written by Amethyst Mare on 26 June 2012
But thats not all...