The Biggest Problem Ever!
I don’t know about you, but I love to go to antique shops and browse around, maybe even take some pictures. On this one day, I noticed a lamp. Now mind you, this wasn’t any normal lamp like one you’d put in your living room, from the old oil lamps that legend says genies inhabit. Something about it pulled me towards it, and I knew I’d get some cool pictures out of it. Picking it up, I carried it to the cash register.
“Sir, I’d like to get this one.” I held the lamp out to the man.
“Okay.” He took it from my hand and searched it pver for the price tag. “Oh, miss! This came from the free pile, you can just take it.”
“Really?” I was surprised. “Are you sure?”
“Yeah, there isn’t a tag on it.”
Overjoyed, I said,“Thanks!”
I took the lamp - now rightfully mine- and dropped it into my purse.
“See ya later, George!” I waved goodbye as I exited the building.
The whole way back to my house, the lamp weighed heavy on my mind. I knew just where I’d put it - on the dresser next to my bed. It was cute and rustic, and I’d gotten it from a garage sale.
I unlocked my door, kicking off my shoes as I entered. A moment of sadness overcame me when my mom didn’t tell me to pick them up.
Just not used to her being in a nursing home. . .
I sighed. I set my purse on the table, pulled the lamp out, and went to go make coffee.
Wouldn’t that be so cool if fairytales were real and there were genies?
I laughed aloud, but the thought wouldn’t go away. Leaving the coffee brewing, I went back to the living room, taking the lamp in my hands. It was colder and heavier than before, almost as if there was a whole new world inside it.
“Should I rub it?” I asked myself out loud. “This is so ridiculous; I feel like I’m nine. Good thing no one’s around to see this . . . !”
Go a head and rub it.
I took my thumb and rubbed it slightly over the top. A shudder raced through me. I had done something, but what? I did it again, this time a little harder and longer.
And then it happened. Not a little puff of smoke or a cloud of it.
This Genie wanted to come out with style! It was as if someone had thrown a smoke bomb into my kitchen, alarms going off (fortunately for me, not the sprinklers.) I started to cough as I grabbed the beeping smoke alarm off the wall and threw it out my front door. I opened the windows and started to fan away the smoke.
As it cleared I saw a figure standing in the middle of the kitchen, arms folded over its chest. It was a boy, not many years older than me.
“Um....” I didn’t know quite how to say it. He was actually a pretty good looking person, considering he was a genie. “This is my house and....”
“Why’d you wake me?” he asked patiently.
“Well, I wondered if it was a genie lamp so I rubbed it. I didn’t know you were in there,” I explained, a little confused.
“I’m Amani and I can grant one wish. Well,” he thought for a moment. “Not really a wish. I can solve one problem and only one. Do you have one you want to be solved?”
“Look, Amani, that’s tough to just come in here and tell me I have to choose between a million different problems.”
I poured a cup of coffee and grabbed my book off the counter. I had started it earlier today and wanted to finish it.
“But you have to choose! I can’t wait for forever you know,” he exclaimed.
“You were asleep for how long waiting for me to rub your lamp?”
“Twenty years but I don’t have that....” he started to say.
“You can wait a day or two then, can you not?” I looked up from my book, glaring at him.
He swallowed. “Sure.”
Sitting on the couch, my mind was not on the Amani but rather on the book and what was going on inside of it. It was as if I was at a window watching what was happening outside. The window was locked though, and I could not unlock it to go through. The thought was very sad to me and in a second, the genie popped back into my head. He could solve only one of my problems and the biggest problem for a bookworm (that’s me.) is not being able to actually travel to these fictional worlds.
I zoned out for a moment, mind going through all the possibilities. After a minute or two, I looked up at Amani who had now made himself comfortable on the couch across from me. I leaned forward and set my coffee on the coffee table.
“You can solve one problem right?” I double-checked.
“Yes,” he answered. “Have you decided?”
“Yeah.” I stood up and started to pace, book under my arm.
“It’s always been my dream to be able to travel to fictional worlds whenever I want too. No limitations, nothing. But, my main problem is that I can’t. I’m trapped here on this earth. You can solve that problem though.” I turned to him. “Can’t you?”
“Go over it one more time so I get it,” he requested.
“I know normal people would maybe ask to never run out of money again or a cure to all the diseases ever but everyone knows I’m not a normal person,” I started. “I want to travel to any fictional world for an unlimited amount of time and whenever I want too. Oh, and no time passes here on earth and I don’t age while I’m in the fictional worlds. Understand?”
“Yup,” he nodded. “I don’t read much but that sounds like an amazing problem to have solved.”
“Well, where do you want to go first?” he asked, standing up.
I pulled my book close to my chest. “Alice in Wonderland.”
“I read that one once!” he exclaimed. “Wonderful book. Good choice.”
“What do I do?”
“Just think of the book and POOF! you’re there,” he explained.
“How do I get back though?” I wanted to know. I also didn’t want to get stuck in a fictional world though.
“Just think of home,” he shrugged.
My heart started to beat faster as the possibilities flooded my mind.
“I hope you have fun in your worlds, Jordan.” Amani reached his hand out and I shook it.
And just like that, with a smaller puff of smoke, he was gone, back into his genie lamp. I thought hard, concentrating on a little white rabbit with a pocket watch. There was a thump as my book fell to the floor.
I was off to Wonderland.