“What do you want?” The Genie asked Steve.
“I get three wishes, right?”
“No. Read my lamp. I’m the Discount Genie. One wish only.”
“Then I wish for an infinite number of wishes.” The Genie laughed in Steve’s face. “What’s so funny?”
“It doesn’t work that way. Nice try, but, no.” The Genie held his naked blue belly as it bobbed up and down.
“You’re a bad genie,” sneered Steve.
“Sorry, but, since living for forever, I’ve learned to cut a few corners and save some things for yours truly. So, one wish, let’s go.”
“This is a lot of pressure.”
“Why? You can only have more after the wish. If you’re not happy now, you think one wish is going to make you feel better?”
“Isn’t that why we wish? Don’t we wish to feel better?”
“Really, you shouldn’t wish, you should just do.”
“Who are you, Yoda in a bottle?”
“Just wish, let’s go. Already I don’t like you.”
“Ok. I wish for love. True love.”
“Sorry. That’s not something I can create or control.”
“Why, because you’re the Discount Genie?”
“No, because I don’t love you. I don’t even like you. Wish for something else.”
“But, I’m a romantic. I want love.”
“If you’re such a romantic, why are you wishing for love? Love is something you make, not wish for.”
“But, I just want love. I’ve been on this stupid planet thirty-five stupid years and I’ve met a lot of people- women even- and where’s the love I hear in every song, poem, movie? Are they all faking it? Is it all make-believe fiction?”
“What do I know? You rub my lamp, I do as I’m told. Now, hurry up and wish for something else, cause all this talk of love is making me hungry.”
“You suck, Discount Genie. I’m not asking for riches, or fame, or even the most beautiful woman in the world. I’m only asking for love.”
“Have you tried Ashley-Madison, or, Lava Life?”
“You’re no good to me.”
“Not if you want love. I don’t even love myself. I’m a pathetic puppet, so how can I love you?”
“But, I don’t want you to love me. I want a woman to love me. She can even be buck-toothed with bad breath! I just want love!”
The Discount Genie tilted his head to the side, taking a long breath. “I’m going back to sleep. You got a wish or not? You want a Porsche? I got a million of them.”
Steve stood his ground, crossing his arms. “I want love.”
Poof! The Discount Genie was gone.
“Wait! Wait! Wait! I’ll take the Porsche! I’ll take the Porsche!”