Took me forever to get this out. I do know this is going to be a multi-part, and with any luck, it'll only be a two parter, but then again, Thirteen O'clock was supposed to be a one-shot. So I'm not promising anything. And while we're on the subject of stories that won't sit still, NON-KUDOS to RAIN-CHAN! -blows raspberry- She turned the story funny again. Is this a bad thing? We'll see. And speaking of, prepare for yet another peach fight. A very LONG peach fight. People loved it so much last time, so I figured, why not?
"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
Well...a huge thanks to Rain-chan anyways. Without her, you wouldn't be reading this. She has been an awesome help...I could almost think she was Leanan Sidhe...if I was male.
Disclaimer: I don't own it.
So she had turned thirty-nine. Sarah was amazed that her friends had even remembered she even had a date of birth, but gag gifts at this time in life just seemed fairly childish. Her brother, now twenty-four, even though busy with his life now still managed to call her to wish her a happy birthday. Despite their distance now, Sarah still felt close to her brother, reasons obvious. The only thing that dragged her into a horrible depression was the crystal that sat on her dresser for years- looked into to see...what? -had disappeared that same morning.
Had he forgotten? Doubtful. The most likely story in Sarah's mind was he had grown tired of her, or he had really meant to take her life. No doubt by now he had been seduced by some Fae...Fae...babe. She might have used stronger words, but Sarah just found the idea tiresome and shallow, and far too painful. Whatever. He could play his games all he wanted. Her part in this ended half a lifetime ago...if it really happened, but Sarah could never really convince herself either way.
I haven't seen him in years...and the last time I saw him... Sarah shook her head and did her best to keep the suds from the soap gel from her eyes as she wiped her face. Tears stung her eyes insistently, but hurt far less than the soap definitely would. The dull ache in her chest spilled into her throat and Sarah leaned against the shower wall, crying shamelessly in her seclusion, as she did every birthday as she gained another year and he never came.
Drying off and dressing in the bathroom (as was her habit due to a certain someone), Sarah exited the bathroom, rubbing her hair with the towel. She just didn't feel like grappling with the hair dryer tonight, though her tresses would be easier to work with. Padding down the short hallway of her apartment, Sarah opened the door to her room and promptly lost hold of her towel, unheeded as it fell to the floor.
Dimly outlined in the waxing moonlight of the first days of the full moon, he stood, turning towards her as she entered the doorway. His black cape fluttered slightly from the breeze created by the open window and caused his crimson shirt to billow slightly, pulling at the confines of the black leather vest he wore. Gray leggings hugged his thighs, causing Sarah's eyes to betray her, and black boots and gloves adorned the appropriate parts. His blonde hair shone silver in the moonlight, giving a halo-like effect.
Gripping the doorframe for support, Sarah could only stare. All words of sorrow, anger, even hatred, flew out of her mind as her eyes took him in. After all these years, he had finally, finally come back. But did he come back for her? Suddenly she halted, now aware she had been walking towards him. Shaking her head, Sarah gazed at him before speaking. "You..."
"Yes, me." His eyes roved over her, taking in her adult form. "Dressed to go out, are we? Pity you never dress in your room anymore, but I suppose I AM mostly to blame for that."
Familiar emotions rose against him especially anger. Yes, anger, lovely anger, able to render a person speechless, incoherent and loose all ties with common sense. All Sarah could really do was narrow her eyes. "Jareth."
"Ah, so you do remember me." Smirking a bit, he glanced around the room. "Still have your fetish for peaches?"
Eyes narrowing, Sarah finally closed the space between them. Reaching back, she slapped him, snapping his head to one side. "I have nothing else to say to you." Turning, Sarah stalked out of her room.
"And just what was that for?" Jareth trailed her, hand to his bludgeoned cheek.
Sarah stopped short of the stairs, glared at Jareth, and instead opted to vault over the railing as opposed to actually using them. "You have the sensitivity and personality of a wet towel, you know that?"
Instead of vaulting over the railing like Sarah had, Jareth continued to follow her, taking the stairs like a sane person would. "Impossible chit..."
The front door could be heard opening. A definite male voice called out. "Hello? Anyone home?"
Bolting into the living room and away from Jareth, Sarah greeted the man at the door. "Hey! I thought you were too busy for anything other than a phone call today."
"Well, I was- Sarah?" The man at the door had spotted a rather disgruntled looking Goblin King entering the living room. Both acting on instinct, they began sizing each other up. "Who's this guy?"
"An excellent question," Jareth sneered. Who was this, her boyfriend? If he was, Jareth would be forced to kill him.
Shrugging, Sarah turned and responded only to the man at the door. "No one important." If looks could kill, Sarah would have had about twenty rusty daggers embedded in her back, compliments of Jareth. "Are these my birthday present?"
Hefting the basket of peaches higher, the man smiled. "Yup. Thirty-nine, actually. And speaking of, you should be thanking Jenna for these, they were her idea."
Practically snatching the basket from his grasp, Sarah didn't hesitate to test one. "Well, you can count on that."
Irritable, and getting more so because he was being ignored, Jareth cleared his throat, causing the other male to jump and Sarah to glare at him. "Sarah, you still refuse to answer my question-"
"Why don't you tell me who you are first?" Male number two snarled suddenly. "Unless that thing you call hair can get up and tell us for you."
"Haven't you heard of manners, boy?"
"Haven't you heard of gel or looking before you cut?"
A strange sound erupted from Sarah, causing both to stop and look at her oddly. Shoulders shaking, she shook her head. It was too much. The Goblin King, in her house, arguing with the brother he had...taken...and neither had any idea who the other was. To top it off, she was munching on a peach right in front of his Mighty Owl-ness.
It was just too much for Sarah.
Turning on Jareth, Sarah smiled brightly. A little too brightly. It was actually making him a little nervous. "Well, you want to know who he is? Fine. Jareth, meet Toby, my little BROTHER. The one you took! The reason I had to play your stupid game and now love peaches!" During this sudden outburst, Sarah was looking for something, preferably large and heavy, to beat the King senseless with besides her bust line.
"Uh...Sarah? What's going on?" Toby's voice sounded confused.
"Toby, behind the couch, I have a Louisville Slugger. Would you be a doll and get it for me?"
Toby didn't move.
Suddenly making a move, Jareth closed in on Sarah and kissed her. For some reason, when Sarah was in this mood, Jareth could make the worst possible judgment calls. Toby was on him in a second, pulling him off his sister. "Don't touch my sister freak!"
Backing away slightly at Jareth's sudden snarl, Toby stared down a very angry Goblin King. "You little rotter! We'll see if you're so brave-"
A well-aimed peach knocked Jareth square in the back of the head, causing him to turn. Another sailed at him as Toby jumped to get out of the path of his sister. "If you TOUCH my brother, I'll shove these peaches up your ass!" Unable to stop herself, the peaches continued to fly towards the King of Goblins, each marked with their own special meaning. Yes, Jareth remembered this sporting event VERY well.
"This is for turning me into a peach freak! This is for all those years of getting dressing in the bathroom! This is for making Toby look at me like that! This is for giving me issues when kids come to the door trick-or-treating as goblins! This is for my decorating scheme! This is for getting me audited by the IRS for suspicious spending on fruit purchases! This is for spending my twenty-first birthday with only peach snapps! This is for all those times I saw a large bird and started muttering about shooting owls! This is for those five years of therapy! This is for all the times I blushed thinking about you! This is for making me just say that! This is for making me just say that in front of Toby! This is for the explanation Toby will force me to give later! This is for that lawsuit from the mailman! This is for never getting my mail on time! This is for Merlin's fear of birds! This is for my hatred of anything round and crystal! This is for my Rice Krispies!"
"Your Rice Krispies?" As weird as it was, Toby was enjoying watching Sarah pelt a complete stranger with peaches. And the poor unfortunate was just standing there, taking it.
Sarah turned and chucked a peach at her brother. "DON'T INTERRUPT WHEN I'M RANTING INCOHERENTLY!" Circling back, she resumed throwing peaches at her true target. "This is for making me just throw a peach at my brother! This is for my embarrassment when I go through the cereal aisle! This is for making me get a P.O. box! This is for making me start a vendetta against apricots for being poseurs! This is for having to repeat biology for refusing to take a field trip to the aviary! This is for never being able to use a feather duster! This is for yelling at the guy who tried to sell me a birdfeeder! This is for trying on men's velvet shirts! This is for making me just say that, too! This is for making me only ever look twice at blond guys! This is for my inability to wear any flavor but peach lip-gloss! This is for my fear of stone courtyards! This is for my fear of landfills! This is for my fear of bubbles! This is for my inability to eat poultry! This is for the immature way I act around bad smells! This is for making me never let Toby go near stairs as a kid! This is for... this is for... I'M OUT OF PEACHES! NOOOO!" Sarah stared at the empty basket in dismay before running into the kitchen, wildly. Jareth looked up, lowering his arms. He couldn't help but smile at the look on Toby's face.
"You'd think I'd be used to that by now," he said wryly. Toby continued to stare blankly... but Jareth wouldn't have heard his response anyway, as just then, Sarah came running in with a large, fresh peach cobbler pie.
"THIS IS FOR MAKING ME JUST WASTE ALL THOSE PEACHES!"
Jareth simply stood there, covered in splattered fruit and dripping with cobbler. It was all over him, in his hair, covering his face. Silence settled over the three of them; Sarah seemed to have finally come to her senses and was staring at him in shock, as though she couldn't believe she'd just creamed the Goblin King peach-style for the second time. Finally, slowly, Jareth reached up and wipes the chunks of peach and what you could call crust from his eyes. "Well," he said wearily, "my apologies, Sarah."
Sarah glared at him, then picked up a vase -decorated with paintings of peach blossoms, no less- and threw at his head, hard as she could. Jareth saw it coming too late to duck. "This is for making me waste Toby's birthday present and a damn good pie!"
"And a really expensive vase," Toby added, shaking his head as the glass shattered over Jareth's head.
As Jareth gripped the wall, attempting to stay upright, Toby edged towards the door. "Um... Sarah... I think I should go... I'll come back, uh, tomorrow... yeah!"
Sarah spluttered with indignation and remorse. "But... but... but!" She turned to Jareth as the door slammed shut. "Now you've made Toby want to run for it! And I'm out of things to hit you with! It's not-" She clamped her hands to her mouth in horror. The day she had defeated the Labyrinth, she swore she would never say that phrase again, or even think it if she could help it.
"Quite frankly, Sarah," Jareth said dazedly, "I'm starting to think we're getting close to even..." And with that, he passed out on the carpet.
Louisville Slugger. A bat, according to Rain-chan, and I'm inclined to believe her. And I counted and Sarah did in fact throw thirty-nine peaches at Jareth this time. Impressive...Those who are curious about why I chose 39 for Sarah's age...I could have some fun with Toby, it seemed like a good, mature, but not too old of an age, I figured Jareth would have forgiven himself by then, and it was the product of two magic numbers, thirteen and three. Anywho, there should be a chapter two coming up...sometime. Not sure when, however. Kudos!