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The Perfidious Vizier

Then the son of the king of the Jinn arose and mounted with him, and they went forth, and proceeded during the night with diligence until the morning. And lo! they came to a black land, not inhabited, abounding with black rocks and stones, as though it were a part of hell; whereupon the son of the king of men said to the Jinnee, “What is the name of this land?” And he answered, “It is called the Dusky Land, and belongeth to one of the kings of the Jinn, whose name is Zu-l-Jenáheyn. None of the kings can attack him, nor doth any one enter his territory unless by his permission, so stop in thy place while I ask his permission.” Accordingly the young man stopped, and the Jinn was absent from him for a while, and then returned to him; and they ceased not to proceed until they came to a spring flowing from black mountains. The Jinnee said to the young man, “Alight.” He therefore alighted from his courser, and the Jinnee said to him, “Drink of this spring.”

The young prince drank of it, and immediately became again a man, as he was at first, by the power of God (whose name be exalted!), whereat he rejoiced with great joy, not to be exceeded. And he said to the Jinn, “O my brother, what is the name of this spring?” The Jinnee answered, “It is called the Spring of the Women: no woman drinketh of it but she becometh a man; therefore praise God, and thank Him for thy restoration, and mount thy courser.” So the king’s son prostrated himself, thanking God (whose name be exalted!). Then he mounted, and they journeyed with diligence during the rest of the day until they had returned to the land of the Jinnee, and the young man passed the night in his abode in the most comfortable manner; after which they ate and drank until the next night, when the son of the king of the Jinn said to him, “Dost thou desire to return to thy family this night?” The young man answered, “Yes.” So the son of the king of the Jinn called one of his father’s slaves, whose name was Rájiz, and said to him, “Take this young man hence, and carry him upon thy shoulders, and let not the dawn overtake him before he is with his father-in-law and his wife.

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Category: Arabic folktales
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