“Did you get anything out of that damn book yet?” I heard the shout echo through my cavernous home and returned a shout of my own.
It had been about a month since the shitstorm blew through and I turned a portion of North Florida into glass. My ex-lover who betrayed me was nowhere to be seen. Which was probably for the best because I was ready to kick his ass. The last time I saw my dog he looked like a Norse god, and he was panting after the only surviving twin goddess of a long-extinct Nubian tribe. My conniving former best friend was still a bitch—literally. But the more things change… Well, let’s just say things were working the way they’d always worked. Life as a genie is long, but hey, unless you really work at it, it’s not boring.
Sometimes I wish I put forth the effort.
“Oy, Jo?” said the only constant in my life. The right-proper Basil Hadresham was my business partner, decades-long friend, and genie extraordinaire. Plus, he spent the past thirty some odd years keeping my life on an even keel. Even if he did have a bad habit of shouting through my abode.
“I heard you. And the answer is no,” I shouted back. “Did you get anything out of that damn dog yet?”
“The bitch is being bloody difficult.” Basil entered my library with the dog in question trailing behind him.
She will tell you nothing, I saw written across the blank page of the book in front of me. Just as you will learn nothing from me.
“And here I was thinking you’d want to brag a little,” I said back to what was in reality a former genie who’d chosen to become an Efreet, one I’d transformed into a sentient tome to keep him from killing me. Since genies can’t apply the death penalty the way Efreet can, Amun got sentenced to spending a good long while as a smart-mouth, uptight, pain in my ass book. I’d taken a bit of shit for going off-script and making him reading material inside of the family pet, but, hey, he deserved it.
Once upon a time, that dog beside Basil, Mena, had been my best friend, until she went to the dark side. I guess they really did have better cookies. Once she made it clear which side of good and evil she played for, she got the old fashioned sentence of being transformed into a pooch. It wasn’t my idea, but it had worked for djinn-kind for centuries—until I came up with the book idea.
Books are easier to take care of, and they only mouth off to you if you open their covers and read what they have to say. Plus, they are way less messy. Proving my point, Mena decided to do her business on my rug.
“Bad dog,” I said, conjuring a rolled-up newspaper and making it whack her on the nose.
“Bitch,” she said back to me. “I hate when you do that.”
“I hated when you betrayed me and got people killed, so I guess I win.” I whacked her again for good measure and then let the newspaper unfurl itself on the floor. “If you have to go again, use that.”
My editor hasn't touched that yet, so go easy on me.
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed it a little and I hope to have this available by Labor Day. I know it seems like a long way off, but AWE takes a month to get the first round of edits back to me, I do my thing, and she takes another 3 weeks to get the second round back to me. Then I do my thing again, format the sucker, and upload it. This stuff takes time. I wish I could make it faster, but I do want this to be as good a book as possible before readers slap down good money for it. You understand that, right?