Thursday, July 10, 2014

Story 40: …It Might Come True

She never thought she’d walk into the kitchen and find a Genie waiting for her.  She couldn’t explain how she knew it was a Genie and not a home invader – she just knew.
Genie: Took you long enough to come back – you cleaned the lamp hours ago and left me sitting here, all alone, drinking your coffee and reading your newspaper.  The world hasn’t changed one bit in 3,000 years, did you know that?
She: Oh!  I – didn’t see you earlier.  Sorry?
Genie: “Sorry?”  Eh, either I sit here or I sit in the lamp, it’s all the same bleh.  So whaddya want?
She: I get three wishes?
Genie: Actually, you get 10. 
She: Really?
Genie: No, you get three!  And they’re more than you deserve – I don’t know who made up the rule that I have to use my awesome powers catering to the whims of nobodies who did nothing special.  It’s not as if you even freed me – after your third wish, back into the lamp I go!  So, what’s it to be?  Spoiler alert: you’re going to hate them all.
She: Oh.  I have to think about this.
Genie: Yes, thinking them out always improves them.
She: I’ve got it!  I wish for world –
Genie: If you say “peace”, I swear to all the gods that are and ever were….
She: Can I undo that?
Genie: Sure.
She: OK.  I wish… people would treat each other better.
Genie: Oh.  That’s actually – not bad.  Let’s try it out.  (Grants the wish) This has to be a first.
She: What?
Genie: A wish that made the world marginally improved.  Nothing noticeable, but a step in the right direction.  All right, I don’t hate you anymore.  Want to do another one?
She: OK!  I think I’ve earned a selfish wish now.
Genie: Set yourself up again, Genie.
She: I wish… I could do more to help those who need it.
Genie: Wow.  I think I’m in love.  Here you go.  (Grants the wish) Hey, where are you going?
She: I’m off to save the world!
(She joins the Peace Corps, Doctors Without Borders, the Salvation Army, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, and is soon awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace.   After the ceremony, she is greeted in her hotel room by the Genie)
Genie: Not that I’m feeling useless or anything, but you do owe all your success to me.
She: Oh yes, and I’m extremely grateful.  I’m going to give you half the prize money as a “thank you”.
Genie: Gee, that’s – no!  That’s not how this works!  You’re supposed to make three terrible wishes no matter how well thought-out you think they are so you learn that there are no quick fixes in life and you should appreciate what you have!  Your do-gooding with them is ruining everything!
She: I do want to make my last wish.
Genie: Let me guess – my freedom?
She: No, I figured whoever put you in the lamp felt you deserved it to make up for a lifetime of selfishness and greed.  I’m going to wish that you lose the power to grant anymore wishes to anyone else.
Genie: Huh?  Can I do that?  (Grants the wish) Guess I can.  So, what, I’m still a prisoner and now I’m powerless, too?
She: Now you won’t have to be bothered by anyone for quick fixes and lack of appreciation.
Genie: Then what will I have to complain about?