Low prices for Lamictal, or buy fluoxetine 20 mg cheaper then ever, weight loss pills orlistat 120 mg delivered overnight. For depression Naltrexone Hcl teblets.
Featured Story • August 2014 • Mythic Delirium Books

Featured Story • August 2014



The Djinn


Saira Ali


What you humans don’t realize is that your kind weren’t the only ones who built an empire. Oh no, your Queen’s men were neither as Christian nor as rational they claimed. They brought the old beliefs with them, and where there is belief, the fae will follow.

We ignored the first thousand and one Mamluk deaths. It was, after all, a matter for you humans to sort out amongst yourselves. We didn’t realize the danger we were in until we found the first of our dead, with rose petals stuffed in his mouth. Your gwyllion and goblins and spriggans and sidhe eventually figured out the roses were unnecessary. For our part we figured out not to shift into human form anymore, not that it stopped them from killing us, but it did slow them down. Some.

I still don’t know what your dryads wanted with my desert.

How did I end up on this miserable grey rock? It’s not much of a story. I was a general once. I lost a great battle. My ruler’s favored son was killed. I was bound to a rug, a beautifully woven ornate carpet, but still, at the end of the day, a rug, and hidden away in a diplomatic missive your Ismail sent to your Disraeli. It was the final insult of my punishment, to be transported across the world by humans.

I am not ungrateful that the Summer Queen unbound me from that cursed rug.

For the first hundred years, I served loyally, brokering truce between our peoples. I arranged marriages between ghuls and barrow wights, marids and selkies. I hosted envoys from my homeland, taught them the language of the fair folk, guided them past piski traps. I sent every one of them home with a letter begging permission to return. Something we all have in common, regardless of race, is a long memory.

No one warned me that Britannia was so cold. And damp. I followed a nymph into her lake once. Of course, it put out my fire. I should have seen that coming. Four wretched freezing days it took to dry out enough for me to rekindle.

I took a lover in time. She changed her glamour for me, wreathed herself in insubstantial flame, wore a cascade of curls the color of the sea under a new moon. In time, she bore me daughters. I hoped they would choose to travel to my homeland, perhaps plead my case at court, or at least, bring back tidings of my shield brothers. Instead, they wear their hair the color of fresh honey mead and pinch their noses to tiny points. Their glamour can’t touch the fire behind their eyes, but they keep it banked.

I cannot grant you a wish, but I will make a bargain with you. Wealth, power, women or men, unimaginable luxury, if you do this one thing for me. Go east and find the ruler of my people. Bind him to this lamp, and wish an end to my exile.



Saira Ali grew up in the deep south of the United States and has still not acclimatized to New England winters. She is both an engineer and a poet, and rejects false dichotomies in all forms. She has poetry forthcoming from Stone Telling and Strange Horizons, and she co-edited In Other Words, a chapbook to benefit Con or Bust. You can find her on Twitter at @kitabiyatpress.



If you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read, please consider pitching in to keep us going. Your donation goes toward future content.



Return to Table of Contents