A/N) My first-ever lemon. This version's a "lemon-lite" though, lol. The more, explicit (though not by much) version can be found at (Link to be added to my main page here.) I left this story off of my account for a year or two, but have since decided to add it on here... Because... Well. What the hell, right? Lol.
He was waiting for her when she closed her eyes and surrendered to the languor of sleep.
Just as he had for five years; just as, she assumed, he always would. She acknowledged his presence with a nod before walking away. She didn't want to be with him tonight; she didn't want his cold companionship or his silence. The silence was what tore at her the most. To see him there, night after night, and never have the chance to talk to him was unbearably frustrating. She longed for more- she longed to hear his voice.
She was hopelessly disillusioned by the outcome of her desperate bargain. After the voice in her mind that accompanied a smell like ozone and a strange foreign spice had appeared in her dream the night she had returned from her foray into the Underground, it had asked her in no uncertain terms what her "boon" from championing the Labyrinth would be. She had answered immediately: "I want to see him again, I want to be able to see him whenever I want."
Now, she snorted silently at her own stupidity. It was always silent in these dreams because she had never clarified to the Labyrinth that she wanted to be able to talk to him. She had said 'see him' and it had given her only what had been explicitly asked for, and now both she and Jareth were stuck in a limbo of perpetual quiet.
"Choose your right words," she mouthed mockingly to herself. Oh yeah, THAT was likely. If only she could learn sign language, then they could have a wonderful discussion!
A gloved hand tapped her shoulder, interrupting her condemning thoughts. She swung around to look at him: Jareth, King of Goblins. He gestured at the forest they were in before raising an eyebrow and then making an "after you" sweep of his arm. She sighed in resignation and lightly rested her hand upon his arm as they strolled in the direction he had pointed out.
Which was also part of the tradition. The Labyrinth was even kind enough to make sure every dream of him was in the SAME damn forest, she thought bitterly. She had been having this dream for five years now. Five years of trampling down paths in the brush that radiated outwards from the clearing she always found herself in after falling asleep. Five years of waking up side by side with the Goblin King. Though admittedly, that part wasn't so bad! With that thought, her lips quirked into a rueful grin.
The very first time it had ever happened she had felt such a mixture of fear and rapture at the sight of Jareth walking towards her that she hadn't known what to do. But as the years wore on, she realized that it just wasn't possible for this to be the real Jareth. He was there whenever she fell asleep- no matter how brief. Surely the Goblin King would have other things to do than sleep all day? She decided that HER Jareth was just another result of the wording of her wish. She was seeing a simulacrum of the real thing; a representation of the man who had very nearly brought her to her knees. The only consolation that she had to cling to was that here, in these woods of perpetual autumn, this Jareth was solely hers.
Leather-encased fingers tapped along her knuckles in annoyance and she realized that he was trying to show her something. She planted a look of blatant inquiry upon her face and cocked her head towards him to show that she was waiting attentively.
He smiled, raised his hand to her jaw, and gently rotated it so she was looking in front of them. Her gasp, as always, was silent. But Jareth seemed to revel in the surprise on her face. There was a lake glistening in front of them. It was a beautiful shining mass of pink and orange liquid that smelled of tangerine and strawberries.
Sarah gave a delighted laugh at the strangeness of the situation. She had been certain that they had walked just about everywhere in the forest, yet they had never come across anything like the lake before. She looked at Jareth suspiciously but he merely shrugged his shoulders before repeating the gallant "after you" gesture of before.
Smirking to herself, she walked to the edge and waited patiently for him to follow her. Once he complied, she flung her arms around his waist and attempted to toss him into the lake. The look on his face was so utterly comical that she started laughing long before he began to flail towards the scented surface. She was so vastly amused that when his hand snaked up to grab her wrist it surprised her so much that he actually succeeded in pulling her in after him.
Gasping for air, she emerged with the sweet taste of strawberry and citrus on her tongue. Whatever the 'water' was, it wasn't sticky but it tasted wonderful. Jareth was floating imperiously on his back a couple of inches away and as her eyes fell upon the smile resting on his usually stoic face, she had the same thought she did every time she met up with him here: God, he's beautiful.
It wasn't long before Sarah began her scheming. She estimated how far away he'd been pulled by the wavelets before diving under the pink 'water' and reaching up to dunk him. While they were submerged, he managed to twist in her grasp so that when they both popped up to the surface he was facing her in the circle of her arms. He laughed, and she felt a pang at being unable to hear it. But from patience borne of years of tiny disappointments, she allowed herself to be swept away in his obvious happiness.
After a while, she pulled her arms from him reluctantly. Suddenly, his eyes were locked with hers and there was no trace of a smile on his lips. She froze with only her fingertips still resting lightly on his sides. Slowly and deliberately, he placed his hands upon her shoulders before sliding them down her arms and pulling until they were locked around him once more.
Her pulse sped up; it was the first time that he had ever initiated any intimate type of interaction with her and she didn't know quite what to make of it. Finished with her arms, he began to peel off his sodden gloves without once breaking her gaze. After his pale hands were exposed, and the gloves tucked away into his pants somewhere, he scooped up some of the water and carefully positioned one hand in front of her lips.
Her eyes were wide as she leaned her face into his hand and sucked the liquid from his palm. His skin was warm, she noted, only a tiny bit warmer than the water itself. She stopped drinking when only a tiny puddle of water lay cupped in the delicate webbing of his fingers. She looked up to see him give her a raised eyebrow, daring her to finish. The hand never moved from her lips and she felt emboldened by the lack of arrogance displayed on his face. She bent her head back down and began to lap delicately at his skin with her tongue. She followed the curves of his fingers, caressing the hallows of his hand teasingly as she gathered every drop of liquid that had settled there.
When she had finished enjoying his bare hands Sarah made the mistake of catching his gaze. She promptly began to sink lower in the water as weakness blossomed in all of her limbs at his look of barely restrained passion. Those eyes held an almost palpable heat in their depths, a promise of sighs and pleasure in darkness. A promise that scared her just as much as it excited her. She was caught in his hunger and it was pulling at her own, until her mouth had parted of its own will to gasp unevenly as she struggled to keep herself afloat while controlling her shuddering body.
A spark flared in those mismatched eyes as Jareth felt her body react. He dipped his index finger back into the water before bringing it to her lips and coating them with two careful swipes. She opened her mouth to lick them, but he lightly clucked her under the chin and shook his head playfully. Apparently Jareth had other plans for the water dripping steadily towards her neck.
His face loomed in closer and she tilted her head up.
The kiss was soft and tinted with fruit. She pressed herself into his body as he charged it with the spine-tingling feel of his tongue sliding along her lips. His teeth nipped her bottom lip roughly before easing the stinging skin with more caresses of his tongue. Sarah was falling into the kiss, spiraling down until her entire world was in his lips and the liquid heat of his mouth.
Sarah awoke gasping for breath. Her breasts ached, her skin tingled; her body throbbed in unabated sexual hunger. And as she licked her lips, she tasted strawberries.
Sleep returned slowly, as though punishing her for seeking it out so determinedly. She awoke with the green smell of grass in her nose, the scrape of it on her cheek. She was in the clearing, but where was he?
She walked their paths alone, fighting the growing urge to scream out in frustration. Where was he!
Sarah was alone as she followed the twists and turns that they had made. She was alone when she finally wound her way to a shimmering lake of strawberries and awakened dreams. And she was alone when she collapsed to the sandy ground and sobbed into her shaking hands.
The dreams stopped after that night.
No voices offered her boons; no sunlit forests appeared to give her someplace to escape to. Sarah was as normal as she had been before.
"Normal," was something that she hated. Normal, was the lackluster life of a twenty-year-old college girl, trying desperately to stay afloat and find her future. Normal meant that all of the magic she had found so easy to believe in was being drained from her each time some scumbag tried to pick her up. Normal meant that something was dying in her, and there was nothing she could do but mourn its passing.
Another sleepless night in her apartment. Just another night of staring up at the circular stain on the ceiling above her, as "the words" tumbled around in the back of her mouth.
Words that were so utterly simple that she was almost afraid to use them. What if he didn't come? What if everything she had been so sure of was really just a prissy little teen's personal angst taking her imagination out on a joy-ride?
She tossed the questions around before coming up with one solution to end them all: What did she have to lose?
"I wish the Goblins would take me away... Right now."
Nothing. Not a flicker of her lamp, nor the tiniest hint of glitter followed by the smallest thump in the dark.
Sarah snorted sardonically. Well, that certainly answered that! No goblins, no "right words," no King, no Labyrinth. So she had imagined everything, even the dreams... Even the lake. She hadn't lost anything because it had never been real.
So why couldn't she stop the tears from raining down on her pillow? Why was she half-numb and more alone than she had ever felt in her life?
Lips against her skin. Wet, burning heat, pooling in the dip of her neck, the curve beneath her ear. Pleasure made her back arch up and into the feeling. More! She wanted... she needed more.
The soft feel of leather sliding along her skin. A little movement with the tip of a finger that brought gasps to her throat and made her mouth convulse. And words; wicked words crooning into her ear. She knew that voice...
"Go back Sarah, go back before it's too late." "Just fear me, love me, do as I say..." "...It will show you your dreams..." "Thirteen hours..."
Her eyelids fluttered open as he claimed her mouth. Tendrils of wild hair, and eyes that saw into her soul...
He sucked her tongue into the cavern of his mouth, swallowing her cries, devouring her pleasure with his lips and teeth and tongue. She shattered, and as her mind regrouped, he withdrew to the edge of her bed.
Her eyes finally focused and met his. There was an offer in his gaze. He wanted her. She knew that he wanted her; she felt in his kisses, saw it in the burning light in those hungry orbs of blue and brown.
Sarah smiled wickedly and crawled toward him, "Haven't you and I suffered through enough silence as it is? Just ask me..." She stopped the moment she felt the heat of his body merge with her own.
"Do you want this, Sarah?" His voice dripped over her like honey. The voice she had longed to hear, asking her the question that she had so desperately craved...
She kissed him with aching pulls of slippery heat, with the memories of the thousands of nights she had imagined his hands on her skin, his body deep inside of hers.
Clothing was ripped away; gloves were discarded as skin met skin.
Jareth crooned to her as he brought them both to the brink. He said everything that he hadn't been able to, everything that had been denied them for so long... Everything he was, he willing surrendered to the creature of liquid fire in his arms.
They moved together, merged in a dance as old as time...
And when he sent her soaring beyond the stars, Sarah brought him along.