“What the heck did they do?” Mike asked. He had reason. To my eyes at least, the flames had a bluish cast to their very center.
“It’s not a fire giant. It’s a something else.” I was wrong. Well, it wouldn’t be the first or the last time. I strode over to the coven. “Ahem.”
Clara turned, she looked terrified. “We didn’t do it,” they all declared, in different voices, with some variation on the phrase.
“Maybe you have more enemies than just an angry ghost.”
I stepped towards the flames. “Who are you?” I asked them.
They abruptly drew inwards. The houses on either side were untouched, assuming no structural damage had been done. Only the one that presumably belonged to one of the coven.
From behind me, “That’s an efreet,” Mike informed me.
Amongst the group I noticed the high priestess. She was un-possessed. So, they’d got rid of one problem, which was deserved, only to attract another which might not be.
“What the heck is an efreet?” I asked.
“The fire equivalent of a djinn.”
“Do they get put in bottles?”
“No,” Mike said, shortly. “But something must have attracted him.”
I turned to face the efreet. “Okay. What do you want?”
“An apology.” The fire being folded his arms…definitely his. A distinctly male build and musculature.
“I suggest you give him one,” I told the coven.
“That’s my place he burned…”
I folded my own arms. “Give him one.” Being on good terms with them, given what I knew, made me feel vaguely disgusted, but if they didn’t, this thing might go burn more stuff.
“Alright. We didn’t mean to wake you up. We’re sorry.” That was the high priestess. She didn’t sound quite as humble as I would have liked.
The efreet snorted. “I’ll take it. This time.” Then he spiraled inwards and disappeared.
Clara was still shaking. I was regretting ever having involved her in this. Except…she had involved herself. The coven moved to pick through the wreckage.
I turned to walk away, but I heard the efreet’s voice in my ear. “You, on the other hand, are quite interesting.”
Not another one, I thought. Not another one…