The End of the World

The genie crossed his arms, “You do know you’re a bloody idiot, don’t you?”

Abubakar only moved his foot so that it rested on the rune that would cause unending pain to the genie. The genie only looked at him disdainfully.

“Do it.”

The genie snorted, “I only wish I could create a backup file of the world. Just to show you your idiocy.” When Abubakar didn’t budge, he sighed and extended his hands outwards. The vague light that had unsettled Abubakar before now extinguished. The runes around his feet disappeared in the darkness and he panicked.

“You damn demon! Come back!” The darkness remained the same.

Then, he felt like he was thrown forwards and backwards and in all directions at once. It almost felt like he was being pulled out of his body. No, he was out of his body. He didn’t feel the usual earthly energies through his feet and he couldn’t feel any resistance when he tried to move. What did he do? What did that damn demon do?

“You got your wish, young master. Now go see what you’ve done.” The genie’s voice boomed in his skull.

And he was back on Earth. The wind came and wrapped around him, purring at his touch. The earth, usually his dominant element, recoiled from him. The air was heavy even with the wind and water hung in a suffocating pressure.

This is your world of peace.” The darkness broke and light rushed in.

He was in a forest. There was no rustling even with the wind Abubakar summoned. There were no bird songs. The only thing that could be heard was buzzing. Abubakar opened his eyes and only saw trees and beehives. Every tree was adorned with a beehive. There were thick vegetation and all sorts of flowers but there were no nests. He forced the earth to obey him. It whimpered and offered him its secrets. Everything was heavy and too full of life with nothing to check it. No herbivores to eat the plants and no carnivores to eat the herbivores. There were no dens, no movements underground. There were no animals as far as he could feel. If he waited, would any timid creatures appear? Was this the silent spring? The silence made the buzzing seem deafening. Surely actual civilisation would have more to offer.

Offer? The forest was teeming with flora so surely there are animals? Maybe the demon’s peace was silence. A thriving forest that was also lifeless. In the damp air, he shivered.

He would have to find a city. On cue, the scene became urban. Many houses clustered together and to his relief, he found that people still existed. But these were a degraded people. They bore scars and their clothes were a mismatched mess and some didn’t even wear clothes. They grew their nails out and sharpened them. Many had missing teeth and the houses they lived in were falling apart. Further away, he saw as a group of humans tore each other apart over some unseen conflict.

“What is this?”

The genie didn’t answer. Abubakar started shaking. “What sick joke is this? I told you to create a world of peace.”

Again, no answer.

He did the only thing he could think of. He forcefully summoned the genie, “Sadaaqat!”

The ground in front of Abubakar was set ablaze and the genie materialised. The runes once again appeared around his feet. In a fury, he stomped on all the runes he knew could hurt the genie, creating a cloud of white dust around him. The genie’s image wavered but nothing happened.

“Why isn’t this working? Damnit, what did you do?”

The genie extended a hand towards the people. “Why? Do you not like this peace?”

“What kind of peace is this? You tricked me! This isn’t what I asked for.”

“Oh, it is. Your exact words were to ‘create world peace’. To do that, I would have to wipe out the human race and turn back time several hundred years because to make humans live without war is impossible and ultimate peace is only possible if humans were never allowed to spread from their cradles of Africa and Asia.” The genie’s face twisted up at the word impossible. “But considering that you envisioned a world where humans can live together without destroying their world and eventually themselves, this was the best I can do.”

“No! This is not what I imagined. They’re living like animals. This isn’t what we’re meant to be!”

“Ah, human arrogance.” The genie suddenly turned red and the fire around him spiked until Abubakar could feel the heat energy even within the protection of his circle. “Do you really think you are any different from the beasts? You’ve just evolved more efficient ways to kill each other. Your sense of compassion is far exceeded by your territorialism and your greed. Oh, I think this world fits all of you vermin perfectly!”

Shaking with fury, Abubakar summoned as much energy as he could into himself, “Turn everything back. This contract is void. You will be punished!”

The genie laughed. “I’m afraid not. I granted your wish to the best of my ability. I was even generous and kept your species on the face of the earth. You should be grateful. Now, you no longer have power over me. Our contract is done.” He disappeared.

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