I do not own Labyrinth in anyway... I wish Jareth would give me my dreams and let me own him. :)
What Dreams May Come
Jareth turned away from the bed and retreated, going up to the room that he could see from below. When he stepped onto the landing, he stopped, his eyes captivated as he looked upon the walls. On one wall was a mural; compete in every detail of the view of the Labyinth, the Goblin City and the Castle from the hill above. He looked at it, taking in the painstaking brush strokes his superior vision could still see clearly. The entire scene had been painted with a small brush, each stroke carefully and purposefully placed.
He passed by the door to the balcony outside, moving to the next wall. There were sheets and sheets of paper covered with drawings of Underground. People and places he knew, but she had never met or been to during her time there, all drawn in a surreal amount of detail. Others of the friends she'd made while there. He looked down seeing that the sketches were scattered all over the floor as well. He moved carefully as he walked the length of the wall, growing more and more alarmed as he went along. How could she know these places, these people? It was as if she'd been walking invisible among them.
He turned to the easel that sat next to the window in the end wall. His eyes met his own visage. The scene portrayed him at a ball. He was holding a feathered mask. He wore all black and seemed to be watching a Sidhe woman on the dance floor. He was looking at the woman with unrevealing eyes, but the smirk upon his lips said that he knew something about the woman on the floor that he was holding against her. This party had been two weeks ago. He remembered this moment with clarity. The Lady Ariel had been for sometime trying to undermine him. He had finally learned enough of her secrets to put her in her place.
He went back to the door that led to a balcony. He opened it carefully and stepped out into the chill autumn air. He let himself drop into one of the plastic chairs that sat there. He let everything that he had seen to this point drift in his mind. Gods, he felt so drained, so raw. He had to pull himself together. He rubbed his hand across his face as he propped his legs up on the wooden rails, careful to avoid the wild ivy growing there. What was going on? He was missing something, something important. If she'd been able to see all these things, why had she never made her presence known to him? Did she still hate him so much?
He looked around him. Though he never really paid that much attention when he came Aboveground, he soon realized that there was not another living soul around them. This place she lived in was isolated, surrounded by dense woods on all sides. This place shimmered with a low level power, just visible to his Sight. It reminded him of an earlier time, in the years before the industrial revolution, when belief had fed the world of Underground and made it and its inhabitants strong. This power he sensed was nothing as opposed to what this mortal realm had possessed then but it was similar, just weaker. It was Sarah, and Sarah alone that generated this energy.
He closed his eyes and allowed his senses to stretch out. Touching the power that he had seen, feeling it, tasting it. There was nothing of the Unseelie in it. If was tinged with a sense of sadness, there was a longing of some kind that hovered within it, but thee was nothing evil about it. Opening his eyes, he came to several conclusions at once. 1) He'd wronged her. Nothing that lived in the bounds of these energies could do the things he'd accused her of. 2) She out of all the mortals he'd ever encountered had not lost belief, true dreams when she reached adulthood. 3) This power felt familiar. He had felt this same power infusing his Labyrinth and his Kingdome, speeding it's healing.
He definitely needed answers, but first he needed to feel normal again, at least somewhat. The energies here could not power his way back home. They were not strong enough for that. They could, however, be used to his benefit. He closed his eyes and reached into the energies around him, tapping them cautiously.
He felt the energy infuse him, filling the empty places that ached, rejuvenating him. He could almost feel his body start healing. He needed one other thing. He took some of this energy and formed it carefully in his hands, chanting softly. He uttered the release phrase and felt the shielding spell settle over his wile being. He breathed in deeply. The chill of the sword downstairs was no longer affecting him. He stood, stretching languorously. He felt a little more like himself.
Jareth re-entered the house and made his way carefully down the stairs. Picking up the blanket that he'd dropped earlier, he wrapped it around himself in the manner of a toga. Taking a deep breath, he moved to the bed. "Let's try this again," he said to the emptiness around him, "calmly this time."
"Sarah, wake up, Sarah." He leaned forward, whispering softly into her ear, bracing himself on either side of her body.
Sarah opened her eyes slowly, her breathing picking up as she realized that Jareth was leaning over her. She must have passed out. She schooled herself to calm. She had to control her emotions. Apparently without his shield, he could feel what she felt. If he'd been going to kill her, she'd have already been dead.
Her eyes met his as she turned her head to face his voice. "If you're going to kill me, get it over with already, otherwise get the hell off of me." He chuckled softly as he sat back up, that was his Sarah, always pushing his patience. At least he wasn't getting any emotional residue from her. It had been his lack of shielding and not her before. For some reason, that made him happy.
Sarah pushed herself up into a more dignified position facing him. "As I said before, what are you doing up? You should be resting. You've had a rough 26 hours from what I can tell." He just shook his head. "I'll have answers first, and then, maybe, rest, Sarah."
She nodded. "Let me go get into some real clothes then. I'll be back in a moment." She pushed herself off the bed, moving past him. She paused just at the door, turning to look at his blanket clad form, her eyes making their way from his head to his feet. "I'll see what I can find for you as well."
He smiled as she closed her door. Had they actually managed to have a civil conversation with no raised voices?
She emerged from the room a few minutes later, her long dark hair pulled back into a pony tail, barefoot, in a pair of beat up jeans and a t-shirt that bore a dragon design. She tossed some clothes in his direction. "Feel free to change in my room. I think those should fit, or at least close enough." She continued through the door way to the room beyond. "Are you hungry? I can fix you something to eat.""Yes," he said, his voice colored with confusion as he watched her walk away from him. "That would be nice.
She'd changed on him again, from anger to kindness in the blink of an eye. She was a whirlwind of emotion. He had heard once that mortals were short lived because they burned out from their brightness. Having known Sarah, he could see the reality of the statement. He stood, then disappeared through her bed chambers doorway.
"Jareth, lunch is ready." She called to him as she sat his food on the dining table. She took her plate and a wine cooler and moved to the chair in the living room. She set the plate on the arm of the chair and took a long drink of the beverage before she started eating.
Jareth emerged from the bedroom slowly. The jeans he wore were at least two sizes to big, and the t-shirt hung loosely on his frame. His feet were bare. He walked from the room seeming a bit embarrassed about how he looked.
"Are those ok? I can try to find something else."
"They will be fine, Sarah, do not trouble yourself. Are you sure that the gentleman these belong to won't mind me wearing them?" He had stopped to look at her halfway between the table and the bedroom door. He had not even considered the idea that she had a man in her life before she had given him the clothes. This situation was wildly inappropriate.
"I'm sure Jareth. They were a friend of mine's clothes. He never bothered to come back for them when our relationship ended." Her eyes clouded for an instant. "Your lunch is getting cold. I know that hot dogs, canned baked beans and wine coolers are not that overwhelming, but they are edible." She gave him a small smile. He retuned it, turning back to the table. He moved the plate so that he could see her. While he thought she was trustworthy, he wasn't quite up to sitting with his back towards her.
Sarah watches as he bit tentatively into the hot dog and then seemed to nod, a sigh of relief echoing in her head. She wondered what was up with the change in attitude. She looked at the clock, rubbing her neck as she took another sip of the cooler. He'd gone from killing rage to civil in an hour and a half. Something was up. When she looked back at the table, she found him looking at her.
"Are you in pain?" Jareth had looked up just in time to see her rubbing her neck. Had he injured her earlier?
"Just a headache, I'm not used to so much activity." That was the understatement of the year. While she was not a complete couch potato, she didn't get a lot of physical activity, except the occasional walk through the woods here. She spent her time visiting Underground and writing her books.
Jareth nodded slowly as her mimicked her action and sipped from the bottle in front of him. The beverage was sweet with an alcoholic undertone, much like watered wine. He finished his lunch and moved to the living room to sit on the edge of the bed. He looked distinctly uncomfortable.
Sarah finished her meal at about the same time and setting her plate on the floor she stood. "Let me fix that for you." She beckoned for him to stand and folded the bed back into the couch. She then pulled the cushions from behind it. Flipping them so that the blood wasn't on top, she put them back into the couch.
Jareth's eyes widened as he saw the couch cushions. "What happened to them?" He blurted before he could catch himself.
Sarah turned and looked at him, her eyes filled with emotion, though he wasn't quite sure what it was. "This is where I bandaged your wounds last night. The blood is yours. It was a scary few hours."
Their eyes met.
Jareth nodded slowly. It was no wonder he felt so drained. "I apologize for having frightened you , Sarah."
An awkward silence crept between them. It stretched for what seemed to be an age, but was truly only a few minutes. Sara broke the silence as she broke the eye contact.
"You wanted to talk." The bottle she was holding suddenly seemed very interesting.
Jareth looked at her. He almost felt the mood in the room physically change. The shutters came down around her. So that's how it was to be. Well, two could play at this game. He brought himself up and schooled his expression to its usual mask.
"Yes, we do need to talk. I want some answers." His words as he spoke were clipped and precise.
"How did I arrive here, Sarah?" His voice was cool as he spoke. He watched her expression shift through a dozen emotions. And then she raised her face to him, showing none of what he'd seen flicker across it.
"I brought you here." She whispered into the silence. "I don't know how, but I did." She looked away then, waiting for the explosion.
"Do you mind telling me why?" His cool voice lost its emotionlessness.
"He was going to kill you. I couldn't let him. I'm sorry, I brought you here, but I didn't know what else to do." The façade fell and tears welled in her eyes.
Jareth ignored the tears. "And exactly how did you know this, Sarah?"
If it had not been that he had far better hearing than a mortal, he'd have never heard her response. "I saw it, in my dream."
Jareth looked at her as if he'd been struck by a bolt of lightening. "A dream, you pulled me here because of a dream." He was losing what control he had.
Her tears dried and she shot him a look that could have killed. "Yes. I brought you here because of a dream. The dream was obviously right or you wouldn't have shown up like you did. I thought it was the right thing to do." With that she got up and walked to her bedroom and slammed the door.
Jareth was on his feet and at the door in moments. "Sarah, I'm not done talking to you. Come back out here immediately." Silence was his only reply.
Sarah lifted her window and carefully pulled out the screen. She pulled herself through the opening with effort, breathing heavily. She landed with a soft "thud" on the hard earth on the other side. Biting back a whimper of pain as she landed, she pushed herself up and began to walk. She could hear Jareth still at her door now, pounding on it.
Jareth brought his fist against the door again, his voice losing all pretense of calm. "Damn it, Sarah., open this door. I am past all patience with this childish outburst. Either you open it or I will." He started to turn the knob only to find it locked. "Fine, on your head be it." He raised his food and kicked the door in, ripping apart the door frame.
A chill breeze met him as he entered the room. The curtains at the open window swayed in the breeze. He could she her just as she reached the tree line surrounding her small yard. He shook his head. What was this woman's problem? Why was she so very difficult? Was it an impossibility for her to just once give him even the smallest amount of respect his title gave him the right to?
He slid through her window easily, landing on silent feet. He moved around the yard careful not to be seen and trying to judge the best way to go to get into the forest unseen. He moved like a cat, carefully stalking his prey. He never lost sight of her as she wound her way down what looked like a well used trail.
'He's out here right now and very angry with me,' one part of her mind said.
'Uh duh, that's why you are still out here trying to avoid him,' said another..
'Maybe I should just stop; a jaunt through the woods is not going to make him any happier with me.' The first replied.
'Go to the pond, that way it won't seem so much like you just gave up, but that you were going somewhere to be alone.'
Jareth watches as her pace slowed. It looked like she was talking to herself. She looked around, as if trying to get a bearing on where she was. Then, she changed direction.
He continued to follow Sarah until she reached a small pond with a wooden walkway leading out to the center. She walked out onto the walkway and dropped down onto the wooden planks. She brought her knees up to her chest, wrapping her arms about her legs. She sat thus, staring into nothingness.
Jareth walked up behind her silently. Sarah could feel him, only a hand span away, his aura brushing her. While he was protected from his emotion by his shielding, she was not protected from him. She didn't feel what he felt, not unless he was either very emotional or he had no shields at all, but she could always feel him. She knew where he was at all times if she was where he was, in the dreams. It appeared that this effect had crossed over as well. She took a deep breath.
Jareth walked up the dock, stopping just behind Sarah. His anger faded as he watched her staring into space. She looked so incredibly fragile. He really looked at her for the first time since he had awakened. She was painfully thin. He could see the line of her collarbone against the shirt that she wore. Her waist was small enough that he could easily encircle it in his hands. Her face looked hollow somehow, yet strikingly beautiful. It was as if she had somehow been burning away all that was unnecessary and leaving just enough for her own survival. He swallowed, feeling an old emotion creep back into his chest. He wanted nothing more than to keep her from all harm at this very moment and he wanted to understand this woman before him, more than he'd ever wanted anything before.
She saw his hand come down to her out of the corner of her eye. "Come back inside, Sarah, the ground is too cold for you to be outside barefoot. You will catch a mortal sickness." She turned her head and looked up at him. Jareth's face showed nothing of his previous anger, there was a hint of something in his eyes that she couldn't identify. Sarah shrugged and then lifted her hand to his and he gently pulled her to feet. Then before she knew it was happening, he reached down and swept her off her feet, cradling her in his arms.
"I can still walk you know." Sarah said as she glared at him. Her heart was pounding at his proximity. She was closer to him at this moment than she had ever dreamed she would be. She had to get away from him. This was too close to him; she couldn't let him see how he affected her.
"Yes, but I can get us there faster. You've already spent too much time out in this chill." Jareth kept his voice carefully neutral. He could feel her ribs against his chest, the sharpness of her hip bones as they settled against his stomach. She was far to light for a woman of her height. She wouldn't even tip the scales at 100 pounds.
He set out at a fast pace that had them back at the house in minutes. 'Sarah, sweet Sarah, why do you persist in arguing with me?' he asked the question in his mind, not wanting to start another argument as he settled her onto her feet at the back door. She wrenched it open and walked into the kitchen trying to put some distance between them.
"Shall we try this again?" Jareth said breaking the silence that had lain between them. Sarah simply nodded. She moved through the kitchen stopping at the refrigerator to get another wine cooler, wishing that she had something more potent. He followed her; she lifted one of the coolers out of the fridge and offered it to him. He shook his head.
She shrugged, took hers out and twisted its cap off, drinking half of it in the first gulp. She went into the living room and reclaimed her vacated seat.
Once she settled back into her seat, he took his. Time to try a different angle. "Sarah, why do you have such a large cold iron weapon?" His head swiveled to the sword on the mantle piece. "Is there someone from the Fae realms that has been bothering you?"
Sarah smiled her spirits lifting a bit. She took another drink of her cooler and shook her head. "No, that sword had been in my grandmother's family for years, centuries even. They moved here from Scotland two generations ago. I don't know that it's even such a deal that it's made out of cold iron. They made swords at that time out of what they had, bog iron."
A look of pain flashed across her eyes. "My grandmother left it to me when she passed on last year she said she thought I would need it someday. Sort of funny since I can't even lift it." She raised an eyebrow at him. "It's not all cold iron though, the hilt itself is silver. It's one of the oddest swords I've ever seen. The sheath for it is in my bedroom. Its lead lined."
Jareth looked away from her, startled by what she had said. If one took all that information and added it up, at some point a Fae had carried this sword. The silver hilt and the lead lined sheath would have been necessary for the weapon to have been used and handled. Apparently at some point in the past, Sarah's family had been protected at the very least by one of the Fae. He nodded slowly. Perhaps that's why Sarah had been able to defeat his labyrinth, her family was Fae touched.
"Jareth, I'm sorry I brought you here, I was just so…." She was looking past him to the wall behind him.
"You apparently did what you thought best, Sarah. And in this case you were correct." Her eyes flashed back to his and locked. "I was in trouble and you brought me out of it. I thank you." Sarah's mouth dropped open.
"Sarah, tell me about your dreams." Jareth said, still looking at the stunned girl.
"Well, um. I…" She glanced at the clock. "Oh my, if I'm gonna get you something decent to wear, I'd best get to it, the stores around here close early on Sunday." She stood. "Do you have anything you'd prefer?"
Jareth looked at her steadily. "Yes. The information I asked for." His words were clipped; she could tell just by the tone of his voice he was angry. He thought for a couple minutes, maybe letting her out of his presence for a while would relax her and make her more willing to talk. "But if you feel it is necessary to go out and do this shopping go ahead. We will talk later. I will rest while you are gone."
Sarah nodded slowly and made her escape as quickly as she could.
Lady Daanna, adopted child to the House of Linnaie stretched as she woke, reveling in the feel of the silk sheets beneath her. She'd managed to sleep away a good portion of the day. She'd sent Gregori off earlier after making sure that he started the day started in the best possible way. She moved from the bed to the mirror over the dresser, and let the braid she'd slept in fall free. She was going to have to do some work on these rooms. Jareth had had an unnatural love for the color black. She felt completely refreshed, Gregori had been right to tell her to stay abed a while longer. The battle of Magicks that she'd had with Jareth prior to their entrance to the city had left her completely drained. Well, almost completely. What energy she'd had left had been completely taken in the victory celebration after.
Jareth. Her lips curled up as she let out a low growl. They were going to have to find him. Most likely he'd exhausted himself and been caught in the Space Between when he'd done his Vanishing. He would float in the mists for eternity. But it was better to be sure. She'd worked for too long, for him to come back to life. His house was the first to fall from Seelie hands in 300 years. From this vantage, there would be more to follow. The Labyrinth was ancient and powerful of itself. It had managed to go from broken to nearly fully healed after Jareth's defeat 6 years ago. The elders had said it would take centuries.
They had courted briefly, three years ago. It had been the most wonderful 6 months of her life. He'd attended her coming out party, to see how the child he'd taken had grown up. And then as quickly as the courtship started, it ended. The only explanation was that bitch, Sarah, damn her mortal soul. She could remember the conversation vividly.
She had been visiting Jareth in his home. Jareth was holding a ball in honor of a friend of his' handfasting. She had wanted to wear something special. She'd found a ball dress in the back of the wardrobe of her room. Once she finished bathing, her servant had come to help her dress. 'Ah milady, you look as enchanting as young Miss Sarah did.' She had spun on the creature wrapping her hand around it's throat. 'Who is Sarah?' The little gnome's eyes had grown wide. 'She was just a mortal girl from Above. She ran the Labyrinth. She wore a dress quite similar to this one in a dream that Jareth gave her. He seemed to like it very much.' Danna had smiled. 'Really? Well then hopefully he will admire this one as much.' When she arrived at the ball she realized her mistake. Jareth's whole attitude toward her changed in an instant. It was an awful evening.
The next day, he escorted her home. They'd stood in her parent's garden when he'd told her of his decision. His voice had been cold and distant as if he were speaking to one of his goblins. 'I am sorry Lady Daanna, I do not wish to hurt you, but I think it best that this relationship end. I will inform your parents of my decision, again, my apologies, my lady.' He'd turned his back on her and walked away, not even glancing back, as she'd crumpled in the courtyard, broken hearted. He'd taken her innocence, not that she had minded. He'd taken her heart.
It was soon after that she had met Gregori. While it is true that the Unseelie and Seelie Courts do not regularly involve themselves with one another, there had been a celebration at one of the more neutral Fae's homes. Her parents had decided that she had to get out of the house and on with her life. They insisted that she should never have allowed herself to become as involved emotionally with The Goblin King until she had until she had surety that he returned her feelings. Gregori had shown an interest in her, she had responded to his interests. Soon they were courting, and within the year they were married. Within a year and a day she was no longer a member of the Seelie Court.
Gregori had had his own dealings with Jareth. But, it was Daanna's desire to see him dead that had pushed this invasion. Gregori would do anything to please his Lady, he had been too long alone. And besides, he reveled in battle, in blood, in death, this gave him the opportunity to get all of those and earn his Lady's favor one more time.
But yesterday, despite his words to the contrary, he had failed her. She had provided the Magicks he needed to see his troops safely inside the Goblin City. She had fed him power to drain and strip Jareth of his protections. Gregori had still permitted Jareth to escape.
She dressed carefully. Somehow, all of the servants here had managed to escape. Into the Labyrinth, no doubt. It was protecting them. Once she completed her preparations, she went to seek out her husband. They had to find the Goblin King and eliminate him. Otherwise, their victory would be for naught. The Seelie Court would hear of this soon enough and if they did not have proof of Jareth's death, it would be the armies of the High King himself they would be dealing with.
Jareth watched as she pulled from the driveway, making sure she was gone before allowing a stream of curses to flow from his lips. What the hell was her problem? What was so very difficult about what he wanted to know? He shook his head, still venting as he brought his fist down on the kitchen counter. He took a deep breath and began to count backwards from 100.
How could she do this to him? She could take him from one extreme to another within seconds. It was this along with countless other traits that drew him to her though. He had not realized how much he had wanted to see her until he woke up and found her lying on the floor yesterday. Damn the woman and her stubbornness! Damn him for letting his emotions rule him. She had already denied him once. There was no way in hell he would permit her to do so again.
If she was like the ladies of the Sidhe, this shopping would take hours. He could do as he said he would or he could try to dig up whatever he could about her life now. It appeared that she lived alone up here on this mountain, but apparently there was at least one village close enough for shopping.
He thought about it a moment. Forget rest, right now he needed knowledge. And the most likely place he would get that knowledge was her sleeping chamber. He made his way to her room and flipped on the light. While he'd been in here earlier, he hadn't really paid that much attention. He had simply changed clothes and left. It had a bathing chamber within it and a large closet. There were a couple of pieces of framed artwork on the walls, signed by a Michael Whelan. There was a shelf that ran the length of one wall, with figures and plaques. The figures were in packaging that had their names written upon it. He gazed upon the figures, with a bemused glint in his eyes.
One was Ludo, another was Hoggle, there was a Fiery, the seer with the bird on his head, and a pixie all lined up in a sort of haphazard way. Next to each was a book, encased in glass, with a metal plaque upon the base. Each read:
Young Reader's Award
Presented to Sarah Williams
They each bore a date as well. He Looked at each. They were all dusted with the same energies that he'd felt before. Then back behind all the others he found another. He looked at the miniature version of himself, shocked that she'd written about him. The book was entitled simply 'The Goblin King' The artwork on the cover showed him as he'd first appeared to Sarah, black cloak and armor, smugly superior.
He smiled to himself. She was writing books for children using her time Underground as a basis. Apparently, the books were well received. He reached out and gently lifted the dusty package containing his figure. There were some differences of course. But it had his mismatched eyes, his wild hair. The outfit a replica of the one on the cover of the book.
He leaned forward to read the plaque on 'his' book. It had been the first she wrote, if the date was an indication. He put down the figure and grasped the glass case that the book was in. It was hinged on the back with a simple closure holding the book in place. He unlatched it, and pulled the book out. He flipped it open.
The first page bore a simple message.
-To make the Labyrinth live again.
SarahHe read the story quickly, flipping through the colorful pages. It told a simple story of who the Goblin King was and what the Goblin King did. It told the truth of him, but turned the tale around. The book was about him and him alone. She'd made him a hero, who saved children from truly evil lives. But the call had to be true, his aid absolutely necessary, otherwise he would not appear. She also seemed to have forgotten to tell them the right words. He laughed to himself as he looked at the shelf again.
She was giving them a new life, a new hope. She was letting the mortal children know that these people and places were real. Only a few would grow up and still believe, but sometimes, it only took one.
He re-read the dedication. She had written it for him, had started all this for him and for the Labyrinth. Somehow she had known how far he'd fallen and with these books she had reached to pick him up. He shook his head. He put the book back into it's case an set it back on the shelf and then when to her closet.
The closet contained clothes and boxes. There were 3 racks for clothes only one was in use. There were some dresses, there, a couple of nice blouses, one or two suits. Sarah seemed not to own much she deemed worth hanging. There was nothing in this closet that might have belonged to a man.
He walked further into the closet and peered into a box that already had its lid laid aside. Inside there were some letters, two books, some ribbon a couple of cards. The contents of the box had the feeling of age, just a touch of the musty odor of misuse. He reached in pulled out the folded piece of paper that lay on top.
He unfolded it and read it aloud, his voice resonating in the enclosed space he sat within.
I'm sorry to do this while your sleeping. I can't live like this. I'm leaving tonight. Someday, maybe you'll find the real world. If you do, look me up.
He raised an eyebrow, and put the letter back where he'd found it. He reached for another box. Her toys, from her room when she was young, filled it to the brim. He recognized them from his occasional flights by there. He lifted the lid from a third box. More toys. Nothing even remotely recent.
He walked back into the bedroom and closed the closet door. He walked over to her dresser. There was a single picture hanging on the mirror, trapped in between the glass and it's wood frame. It was Toby, not long after her visit to Underground. A string of colored beads hung on one corner of the mirror. A piece of chording hung from the other. There were two small boxes on the dresser. One held some cosmetics, the other a small selection of jewelry.
He moved over to the chest of drawers. Opening the drawers slowly, he found that all it held were art supplies. The drawers were filled with canvas, paints, chalk and sketch pads. Atop the chest was a small black box, he thought for a moment, a television, the mortals called it. It was small as opposed to what most mortals seemed to have.
Nothing in this room other than the books. 'Damn.'
Did she really have no one? There weren't any family pictures other than the one picture of Toby on the mirror. There was no sign that anyone besides her was here, or had been her for a very long time. He turned off the light in the room, standing with his arms crossed while he tried to decide where to look next.
He went into the living room and threw himself into the chair she normally sat in. Something black on the floor, caught his eye, just on the edge of his vision. He bent over the arm of the chair and reached beneath it, pulling a large bag from beneath the chair.
He opened it slowly and peered inside. He pulled out the pictures and story that lay inside. Her drawings were so amazingly real. He could almost see the real Didymus in front of him. Perhaps it was her time Underground that had given her such a gift. These drawings were beyond typical mortal ability.
It seemed her whole life revolved around these books she wrote. He put the pages back into the bag and pushed it back beneath the chair. For some reason, that thought saddened him. Sarah should be able to live happily, knowing only good things. She should have lived her wildest dreams. She should have been his.
He went back into the kitchen. He opened a cabinet and pulled down a glass. He opened the refrigerator and pulled out a jug of water. He looked over the magnets hanging on it's door only to realize there was a picture hanging here as well. It was a small picture of a man and a woman done in black and white. They were an older couple, but they looked happy enough. Sarah looked much like this woman. Her grandmother, perhaps?
The sound of crunching gravel announced her return long before he saw the light of the truck. He'd told her he was going to rest. He drained the glass of water and went back to the living room. He stretched out on the couch covering himself with the blanket that still lay there. He closed his eyes, and awaited her return.
Sarah finished with her shopping far too soon. Wal-Mart was far too accommodating for her tastes. Fortunately, Jareth did not know that this particular Wal-Mart was open 24 hours. She got into line with her cart full of both groceries and clothing. She'd gone bought food the day before, but it wasn't meal food and definitely not enough for two. Ten minutes later she was on her way back home, driving slowly, trying to take as much time as possible, still thinking. Jareth had obviously gotten at least some of his shielding back up. That was good he wasn't aching at her at least. It also meant that she wasn't emoting at him.
The dreams, he wasn't going to let this conversation rest. Well, that was why she had stopped at the liquor store. If she was going to have to relive everything, by god she wasn't going to be sober.
She took a long swig from the bottle of whiskey and winced as it hit her empty stomach. Drinking and driving. She should be shot. He drove her to desperate measures even now. But, she would be home before the effects hit, she hoped.
She started feeling the effects just as she turned onto her own road home. The warm feeling coursing through her veins, a welcome one. She flipped a switch on the dashboard, as she geared down the truck for the long winding hill ahead. Four-wheel drive was essential.
She took another long drink from the bottle, after lifting it to her lips from between her legs. A mile to go, a mile til she had to face him with the truth of her wretched existence. Damn the man and his questions anyway.
She turned the radio up, forcing her thoughts from her mind. She simply sang with the song on the radio. The sun finished setting as she drove over the hill. Her actual driveway was just ahead. She pushed the remote on for the garage door just as she pulled in. Once the door opened, she slowly drove in.
Sarah brought the truck to a halt with a lurch, forgetting the clutch and killing the engine as she did so. She opened the truck door, remembering only after the fact to close the garage door. She stepped out of the truck, bracing herself with both hands as that first wonderful head rush came over her. She closed her eyes and smiled crookedly.
She leaned forward, and felt for the bed liner switch, afraid to open her eyes until the world stopped spinning. She caught it and pulled it up. She heard the bed liner unlatch with a click. She stood a couple more minutes, and just as she decided she could move safely, the song came on. It's first haunted chords mesmerizing her.
"I'm so tired of being here
Suppressed by all of my childish fears"
Sarah's body started moving of it's own volition. The garage light blinked off, leaving her washed in the moonlight flooding in from the windows. The dance was slow, circling in a small pattern. She brought her arms up into the framing angles of a waltz, the hand that should have been holding her partner's hand was holding her bottle. She started singing softly, her voice blending easily with the girl on the radio.
Jareth lay in the dark as she drove her vehicle into the garage. He waited for her to join him in the house impatiently, so he could get the truth from her. But she never came in. The light from the garage blinked off.
Was she not coming in? He stood, shaking the blanket off of his body and started moving toward the door. Once he got there he tugged it open, readying to berate her for being so slow. He froze as he caught the sight before him, his words dying in his throat.
"When you cried, I'd wipe away all of your tears
When you'd scream, I'd fight away all of your fears"
He could hear her voice blending softly with the singers voice. She looked almost Fae in the moonlight, the light washing out her skin and heightening the shadows that the angles of her body causes. She danced as if in a waltz, holding a half full bottle of some kind of beverage, just a little unsteady on her feet.
Jareth didn't mean to move, but he found himself in front of her, sliding the bottle from her grip and replacing it with his hand. He set the bottle in the back of the truck and then settled the other hand on her waist. Sarah's eyes never opened as he took his place beside her. 'Does she even know I'm here?' He asked himself. He could smell the alcohol on her breath as she breathed on his neck.
"You used to captivate me
By your resonating light
But now I'm bound
By the life you left behind
Your face, it haunts my once pleasant drams
Your voice, it chased way, all the sanity in me"
Sarah felt the bottle be lifted from her, as Jareth brought himself into the circle of her arms. She refused to acknowledge his presence for fear he would vanish in a wisp of smoke. She'd spent six long years waiting to feel his hands on her body again. She wouldn't, couldn't, let the spell end just yet.
"I've tried so hard to tell myself your gone
And though you're still with me, I've been alone all along"
Jareth lifted her hand to his lips as the last chord of the song drifted through the air. The song's ending broke the spell and Sarah opened her eyes. She met his green to mismatched blue and brown, questioning him, almost daring him to see the truth, as her eyes told him exactly how she felt about him.
She broke the contact between him after a few moments, moving to the truck bed and retrieving the bottle as well as a couple of bags. Jareth watched her motions, not quite full of fluid grace, carefully containing laughter that was rising in his chest.
His voice would have sounded stern, if it hadn't been for the ghost of humor that leaked through. "I said shopping. Since when do drink and shopping go hand in hand?" She looked back over her shoulder at him, giving him an impish grin. "The liquor came from a place I shop at frequently, thank you very much." She looked back ahead of her and made her way through the door. He looked into the back of the truck with a sigh, then reached in and picked up the last of the bags.
She came back out, and raised an eyebrow at the fact that he was helping bring in the groceries. She shrugged and then moved to the cab where the door was still open. She slid in, pushed the clutch and put the truck in the right gear. Then she set the brake as she turned off the key and slid it from the ignition. She shut the truck door and followed him into the house.
She put the groceries away in silence, moving by memory, through the darkened moonlit house. She feared that turning on a light would send this current lull in hostilities scurrying into the shadows. Thus, the only light that shown was the light in the refrigerator as it opened and closed when she put way the items that needed chilled.
Sarah gathered everything she'd bought for Jareth and put it into two bags. Picking them up she carried them and her now only half full bottle into the living room. She dropped the bags by the sofa as she walked by it and then moved across the room to her chair and settled down on the floor in front of it, leaning against it's base and seat. She took another long pull from the bottle as she watched him settle in front of her on the sofa.
Jareth watched as she put the goods she purchased away, staying silent as she worked. She seemed bent on not speaking, as if preparing herself for something undesirable. Finally she finished with her task and moved into the living room. He watched her slide down to the floor. He took a seat on the sofa, bringing his legs across it's length and twisted his torso so he could see her, his head resting on his hand.
"Wouldn't the chair have been more comfortable?" He asked her.
She shook her head. "You can't fall off the floor, Jareth." Her words were just slightly slurred, but her voice was very serious. Jareth could see a soft blush across her cheeks.
"Why did you do this?" He asked softly.
"Trust me, it's necessary." Sarah managed a tight smile as she responded.
"You want to talk, I need not to have to feel what I'm saying."
"Is it so bad?" Jareth responded, confused by the pain he was seeing in her eyes.
"Most likely, that will depend on your point of view."
Jareth slid his legs off the sofa and slid to the floor, mimicking her posture. He met her slightly unfocused eyes. It would probably be best to be down here where she was, so he could catch her when she fell prey to her drink.
"Tell me about your dreams, Sarah."