The three of us sat in the library, each working on individual projects. Gobelen had found himself a book in one of the more remote cases on the library’s second floor. The superficial human form he wore for our benefit was that of an Arabian male a little younger than myself, and based on how he acted, there were times when we could almost make ourselves believe that was what he really was.
The book he’d found was an encyclopedia of ancient myths. I looked over his shoulder and saw he was reading the entry on “The Caliph of all Jinn.” The image depicted a being with the torso of a very tall man—up till the head, anyway; I don’t know what that was—with the lower body of some kind of donkey/dragon hybrid.
Gobelen was looking at the book like it had him entranced. I would almost have said there was regret on his lips if it hadn’t been for the unmistakable pride in his eyes. In that moment I could almost convince myself that he was the genie in the picture. It occurred to me that maybe I hadn’t really seen his true form, or a real demonstration of his power, but something told me not to ask.