I do not own Sarah, Jareth, or anything relating to the "Labyrinth" movie.
Sarah was beginning to feel out of place and lonely. She should be enjoying herself, dancing with friends and relaxing after the agony of mid-terms, but she kept remembering a very different place and a very different masked ball. Sarah sighed. She could never just leave her dreams in the world of fantasies like everybody else seemed to.
After weeks and weeks of planning, fundraising, and working her college was finally hosting the long awaited masked ball, and really they had done a good job. They had a huge variety of refreshments including a wine bar, and many people had put lots of effort into transforming the galleries of the art building into a fantastical setting. The art students had picked the theme of pagan myths and ran wild with it. There was an area decorated to look like a forest with fake trees everywhere and green lights aiming down and along the walls where a forest back-drop that had been borrowed from the drama department hung. There was a wooden table that held refreshments of many types of fruits and several bowls of nuts. Another room was full of cool blues, greens, and silver with decorations including a large plaster mermaid made by one of the sculpture classes which had been draped with shell necklaces and fake pearls. Somebody had even put a lei around her neck and some of the freshman boys couldn't resist making jokes about how "she had been leid," and cracking up as if that were the most funny and original thing they had ever heard. There were also actual tanks of fish, placed on in high niches so that the inevitable crazy drunk students couldn't break the glass or dare each other to swallow the fish. The food available in this room was, of course, sea food: crab dip, shrimp, and even some rice and fish sushi that the culinary students had made earlier that day. All the rooms had been decorated with a theme down to the art displayed and the food served. There was a Greek room full of grapes both fake and real (this was also where the wine bar was located), a celtic room that could've been either Scotland or Ireland with fake sponge-painted standing stones, an Egyptian room full of hieroglyphics and a fake mummy guarded by animal headed sculptures, all sorts of rooms filled with dancers in masks and costumes.
The mask sales had been phenomenal. Many students had sculpted and painted masks, everything from large full faced animals to small mardi gras style feather masks, and they were bought left and right. Almost everyone there had gone full out with their costumes. Sarah had seen several boys dressed as satyrs with fake horns and goat costumes and their lower halves dancing around and playing little reed flutes. There was a tall person dressed as Anubis, and how we could possibly see was anybody's guess. One boy somehow put together a giant squid costume and spent most of his time in the ocean room leaping on anybody who walked through the door, delighting in hearing the many girls dressed as fairies shriek. The costume that seemed to be gaining the most attention was the phoenix costume worn by Sarah's friend and roommate Janice who was studying costume design. She had sewn together a gown and wings made up of tons of scraps from the costume shop in many shades of reds, oranges, yellows, and even purples, and the effect was stunning.
The whole thing was a huge success.
So why did Sarah feel so sad, so...disappointed?
Sarah was dressed in a silk dress of deep midnight blue that seemed to flow around her legs as she moved. The neck hung just low enough to reveal a silver necklace representing the phases of the moon on a delicate chain. Her mask was a simple delicate thing that covered half her face and was painted in various shades of blues with silver. She, like many others, had painted her mask herself.
What were you expecting? she asked herself. A glorious Venetian ballroom full of lords and ladies in glorious dresses and intricate masks? A prince to sweep you off your feet?
...Or a king?
She shook her head hoping to remove those thoughts. That ball had simply been a dream within a dream, a hallucination brought on by that drugged peach. Besides, she had felt so lost and afraid, a mere child confused and lost amongst strangers in sinister masks. Until she was in his arms.
But that wasn't real either. It wasn't him. It was only a dream of him.
I couldn't have stayed anyway. I needed to save Toby. He was my responsibility, it was all my fault. I had to make things right.
She still dreamed of it. Whether she wanted to or not she dreamed of him. His eyes, full of amused challenge as he stood at the window, piercing as they watched her flee from him when she remembered everything, as they pleaded with her stay.
She turned around to find who was calling her. She never thought anything could have made Janice's flaming red hair seem calm and cool, but the phoenix costume was like fire itself. Sarah couldn't help but smile at the sight.
"There you are! I've been looking everywhere for you! Don't you dare hide in the corner! Time to be social for a change. C'mon, time to start feeding you alcohol!" Her friend grabbed her hand and yanked her into the chaos of masked students. Eventually they found themselves shoved up against a table with wine filled glasses. After having her hand glanced at quickly by the bartender Sarah picked up a plastic cup of red wine and took a sip. Her hand had been stamped upon arrival with same drama mask rubber stamp that was used at the plays and musicals to mark a person who had paid: the classic one grinning mask and one frowning mask. Tonight it marked those who were twenty-one and over.
Sarah and Janice were quickly joined by some of their other friends: Tim was wearing his old Puck costume from the performance of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" last fall and was practicing his juggling...badly. Leah was normally a very intelligent and artistic girl, but as usual she was trying to catch Tim's attention, giggling every time he dropped one of the balls he was trying to juggle. She had dressed as a fairy and Sarah had a sneaking suspicion it was to go along with Tim's Puck outfit. Janice's boyfriend was dressed very simply in a Phantom of the Opera outfit, but the effect was dashing.
For the most part that night Sarah did manage to have a good time. She and her friends roamed the different areas, talked, laughed, danced, and just enjoyed seeing everyone from around the campus relaxing and being crazy. Even so, after the first couple of hours Sarah started to feel weary, and then detached. This had started happening to her periodically since she had spent those thirteen hours in the Labyrinth, moments where she simply felt like she was watching the world from a distance and everything seemed to have no more meaning than white noise. She told her friends that she wanted to go and get some fresh air and slipped away quickly into the crowd of people before any of them could offer to come with her.
Once out of sight she contemplated the best way to get outside. She was very close to the main entrance, but it was packed with people and it would be very difficult to squeeze her way through, not to mention avoid polite conversation that would most likely spring up with somebody who recognized her from a class.
Techie door, she decided. If she went downstairs she could easily slip into the technical theater room where there was a door that lead outside with a sign saying in big red letters that the alarm would sound when opened. All the theater students knew that in fact nothing happened when you opened it and they all used it regularly. Sarah wove her way to the stairs and ducked quickly under the carefully placed streamers and painted banners that were there to discourage most people from going down the stairs, thus keeping all the activities upstairs. She walked down, carefully holding up her skirt.
She was walking in the direction of the theater and tech rooms but paused and frowned when something caught her attention. There was a glow coming from the large dance room behind her. Why was there a light? And not just the usual bright dance lights, it was a strange blue glow and there were dark curtains hanging in front of the doorway. It was decorated as if it were a part of the ball, but Sarah had played a large role in the plan committee, and there hadn't been any plans to use any of the downstairs. She decided to go and investigate.
She slipped her feet out of her horrible clicking heels Janice insisted that she wear and walked quietly towards the door listening hard for voices. There were none. She examined the door for a moment. It was hard to tell in that dark hallway what color the curtains were, a dark red, green, or blue perhaps, but there was still an unmistakable blue light shining through the part in the curtains. Sarah hesitated for a moment, then reached out a hand, pushed the a curtain aside, and stepped through.
She wasn't prepared for what she saw. She had been expecting to see the usual large echoey dance room and whatever that light was, but when she stepped through she immediately had to cover her eyes and take a few steadying breathes. Everywhere there was a bright glowing pattern of lines, they seemed to bending and twisting all around the room, around her, they even seemed to be floating in the air, confusing her mind's sense of perspective and she had to close her eyes in order to not fall down dizzy. She slowly opened her eyes and tried to figure out what she was seeing. The lines were still there, zigzagging everywhere, hair-thin in some places growing to wider in other places. Vertigo filled her once again and she turned hastily to leave again. She couldn't find the doorway, just more twisting lines. Sarah keenly felt a sense of deja vu and remembered the final obstacle of the Labyrinth: the room with all the stairs that mimicked the Escher print she used to own. She drew a shaky breathe and looked slowly, carefully around her.
The room was filled by that subtle dark blue light, giving it a strange twilight glow. Sarah couldn't find the source of it, so wherever it was it was well hidden and gave barely enough light to see by. In fact, the only light thing in the room was those many lines, but light wasn't a good way to describe them: she could see them clearly but they illuminated nothing. They had a distinct and imposing presence.
There were other things in the room too, things that were nearly impossible to see. As she walked carefully forward she could swear that every now and then she would catch a flicker of movement at the corner of her eye, but then in a moment she couldn't remember where it was she thought she had seen it. She encountered fake trees, dark and winter-bare, stones, and intricately done statues in the shapes of hounds, dragons, snakes, monsters, hybrids, and things she couldn't even name. Sometimes she would see one looming enormous above her before it seemed to disappear. Sometimes she would almost trip over one she hadn't noticed at all. The room seemed larger than she remembered the dance room being, in fact, it seemed as if it were endless somehow.
Another statue appeared near her feet and she stumbled, throwing out one of her arms to steady herself. She touched something cool and crystalline. She looked at it in surprise and then all the tension left her and she laughed quietly at her foolishness. Of course, the whole effect had been done with mirrors. She looked around and understood for the first time. There were all sorts she saw now: normal mirrors, concave, convex, mixed types, all somehow arranged to make everything seem larger than it was, to distort everything to be bigger, smaller, or just not noticeable. The lines had to be some sort of pattern that was being reflected many many times. Her fear seemed foolish now. This had to be just another room that somebody had decorated. The fact that it hadn't been a part of the plans still puzzled her, but she figured she would find out why it was there.
She scanned the room slowly and carefully trying to figure out where the original line pattern had been placed, curious as to what it actually looked like. When she finally looked down, she gave a cry and took a few terrified steps backwards. There drawn on the ground was a perfect Labyrinth, and she had already walked many steps into its beginning. She had seen the design many times around campus, many people wore them on pendants, earrings, t-shirts, there was even a guy she had seen with it tattooed across his entire back, so she was very familiar with design. Even so, seeing one so suddenly, one surrounding her shook her.
Calm down, Sarah! she chided herself. This has nothing to do with you or your quest seven years ago. Somebody just liked the design and went all out with designing a room.
The question still remained: who had done this and why? Why had they not run it through with the committee? They could've gotten more money and help that way, so why would it have been kept a secret? How had it been kept a secret? She couldn't see anybody else there except for herself, she would have expected there to be many people in there, planned or not, word travels fast on any campus.
What was that in the middle of the labyrinth? In the dull light it was hard to make out, but she thought she saw a shimmer of some sort. Sarah hesitated then started walking forward. She was surprised when she realized that upon reaching the first bend she had, instead of just continuing straight forward across the floor, turned and continued following the path. She barely even thought about it, part of it felt as if she would not more walk across the lines of this Labyrinth than try to walk through a wall or glass. She knew she was probably being silly, but she felt like she would be completely unable to do it even if she tried, so she continued walking carefully along the curving path that would lead her first close to the center so that she could almost see whatever was at the middle before it lead her back to far edge of the maze. The further she walked the stranger she felt, like she was falling asleep and dreaming but was at the same time wide awake. She continued to pass the strange statues (were they really just statues?) that would suddenly loom up and then fade, to pass the bare fake trees (she wasn't so sure they were fake anymore, it was hard to think at all), and the faint dark blue glow continued to shed a small amount of light but not enough to help her see.
At last she reached the center and was able to get a good look at what was there. There was a small table that she hadn't been able to see before in the gloom as it was covered by a dark tablecloth. Sitting on it was a silver colored chalice and next to it was some sort of dark fruit that had been cut in half. It had been light reflecting faintly off the chalice that had caught her attention before. Its design seemed strange. A chill shivered its way along Sarah's spine. She picked up the chalice and examined the design etched on its surface: 孟婆 It looked like Chinese, but she couldn't be sure.
"Would you drink of Meng Po's five flavored tea?" a quiet voice spoke somewhere behind her. "It is her cup you hold."
Sarah jumped, she had thought she was alone. She looked around quickly, her heart pounding. She noticed for the first time the outline of a figure leaning against the wall, some how standing in just the right place so that none of the mirrors reflected him. His features were indiscernible, although she could tell that he, like everybody else, was wearing a mask. As he walked closer she saw that it was in the form of some sort of demon or monster with large horns making him look like some sort of devil materializing from the dark. It was hauntingly similar to another she had seen, but his had been on stick, like a skeleton's arm, this one was bound about his face. It couldn't possibly be the same one.
"Or would you rather eat the pomegranate fruit? One will allow you to forget all that you have lived, all your sins and regret, and free you from this place. The other will bind you to the underworld and bind you as the consort of its king, such was the fate of innocent Persephone. Forgiveness and sin, they represent a dual aspect of this place."
He moved forward. Sarah felt a flash of fear but pushed it down. He was probably one of the people who designed this place, and from the maturity of his voice and the confidence with which he told her these things made her think he must be a professor. That was probably why she didn't know about this room, several of the professors must have gotten together to organize their own room. That had to be it. She told herself to relax, but there was a part of her mind that felt uneasy. She put down the chalice hoping to ease the shaking in her hand and looked again at the fruit. It was indeed a pomegranate lying open in two halves, its deep red seeds spilling onto the table.
"I..." she swallowed and forced her voice to sound steady. "I didn't think any of the downstairs was going to be used tonight."
He said nothing, just continued to walk forward leisurely. Unlike Sarah he didn't seem to have any problem stepping over the lines of the Labyrinth. The mirrors reflected him in thousands of different ways so that it was like he was constantly moving all around her. She had to focus hard on his actual self or she would be too dizzy to stand. He stopped several feet away from her, his stance seeming to ripple with power, a predator.
"Who is Meng Po? she asked finally.
"She is the Chinese lady of forgetfulness who dwells in Di Yu, the Chinese underworld. When the souls of the dead are ready to move on she allows them to drink the tea of forgetfulness so that they forget all they haven been and all that they have done so that they can be born to a new life."
"So, the tea of forgetfulness and the pomegranate of Hades. It's supposed to be some sort of afterlife theme?"
"It's a place for souls." She jumped, somehow she realized that she had been watching an image in the mirrors when in fact he was creeping up behind her. His voice was hauntingly familiar, cultured and arrogant, but her mind refused to think about what it meant. She turned and faced a pair of mocking eyes behind the mask. "The greeks called it Hades, the place for the dead and souls of heros, or, going deeper, Tartarus, the place of cosmic origin and of suffering for those who crossed the gods. The Egyptians called it Duat, and it was where the sun traveled during the night and where all souls must have their hearts weighed to account for the lives they have lived. It is also Di Yu, the underground maze where the Chinese believed that souls must atone for sins in order to pass to the next life. In ancient Hebrew legends it was is Sheol, the common grave of mankind, the place where all the dead, brave or cowardly, innocent or cruel, would come to sleep forever in the darkness. Niflheim, Shipap, Mictlan, Purgatory, Kurnugia..." he waved his hand. "Many names, many views, but it's all the same. This is the underworld: paradise, punishment, and prison all in one. Existing forever far below the living."
He cast his eyes upwards and Sarah could still hear the faint sounds of music and laughter above them. Up there were all the people she knew, all those bright colors of the costumes and the masks, and she felt a chilling disconnect from them. She was alone in the dark with this strange man beneath it all. Desolate.
She was shaking now, but despite her fear his movements and his voice seemed to be spinning a web of desire around her, this sweet silk of his voice, his smooth silent movements, that sensual mouth expressing dark amusement. She hadn't been able to think clearly since she had entered the room. She felt as if he controlled everything there and was deliberately trying to confound her thoughts.
The mouth under the mask pulled into an amused and undeniably feral smile, as if he could read her thoughts.
He's trying to frighten me.
She summoned all her courage and glared at him defiantly.
"Well, this has all been interesting, but I need to get back, my friends will be looking for me." she said matter-of-factly. She turned her back on him and moved to walk straight across the Labyrinthian, she felt fairly certain where the door was. Something strange happened; the second she tried to step over one of the lines surrounding the center a deep cold shuddering terror seized her. She felt like an icy hand had reached into her and grasped her heart and froze her bones. Her skin began to crawl horribly. With a barely suppressed whimper she backed up until she hit the table, nearly upending the cup and its contents. She heard his dark chuckle.
"You're trapped Sarah." his voice held a hint of triumph.
She turned to face him and saw that wicked smile firmly in place again. Her doubts and denial vanished in an instant. It was him, it couldn't possibly be anybody but him.
The chuckle turned into a loud laughter and the mask was tossed aside.
Jareth. The goblin king. The one Sarah had feared all these years she would face again, but who had also been secretly ruling the hidden places of her heart.
"Me." he said sardonically.
He was so beautiful. He had been beautiful then, but now she was seeing him through a woman's eyes and she saw him in ways she hadn't as a mere girl. His hair was the same white gold color, long and looking as if he had just walked through a windstorm. He was wearing a loose black shirt that stood open part way down his chest with that strange crescent moon pendant seeming to glow against his unreal flesh. His breeches were likewise black and his legs ended in black leather boots. His hands were, as always, hidden in black leather gloves. He moved gracefully like a bird of prey gliding in the sky. Sarah found she had to focus in order to keep her breathing steady, the sight of him after all those nights of dreams and unbidden thoughts threatened to overwhelm her.
She forced her eyes into a steely glare.
"You tricked me." a single eyebrow raised and the corners of his mouth twitched in a suggestion of a smirk. "You led me here so you could trap me in another one of your hellish games."
"Did I." he stroked his chin thoughtfully. "It seems to me you wandered in here of your own accord and trapped yourself. Again. I would like to point out that you could easily have just continued on in the direction you were heading."
"There was light where there shouldn't have been, anybody would have come to look."
"Not anybody. Only you." his lips curved upward to bare his teeth in a smile. "Nobody else would have noticed anything at all."
He began to walk in slow circles around the small area where she was trapped.
"What do you mean?" she asked coldly.
"Don't you know" he purred quietly.
He was suddenly very close to her now, standing right behind her. She had forced herself not to turn and follow his progress, but now she could feel him standing so close behind that she could feel his warmth and his whisper stirred her hair. Despite her self-control she felt a shiver run through her at his closeness. She braced herself and turned to face him.
"I imagine it has something to do with the fact that I defeated you and your little labyrinth all those years ago." she said defiantly after recovering herself.
He frowned at her words.
"Is that why you've trapped me here? Vengeance?"
"Do you understand the nature of a labyrinth, Sarah?"
"You use it to stop people from rescuing what you take."
"What they ask to be taken." he corrected harshly. "And I'm not just talking about my labyrinth, Sarah, I'm talking about all labyrinths. Do you understand the nature of labyrinths?'
He watched her.
"No.," he said with satisfaction at her silence and the wary look on her face. "I thought not."
He stepped toward her and she backed up until she felt that strange coldness at her back. She froze and he leaned in close to speak intimately in her ear.
"Allow me to enlighten you. What you are standing on is a symbol. The purpose of symbols is to represent great sources of power, some can even channel that energy. As you know, it is a symbol of a labyrinth, a mere symbol of the true power found in the labyrinth, but I did do one thing to ensure that it did channel some of the power: I drew it with a powder made from ground up crystals that reside beneath my castle, deep in the heart of my labyrinth and the underground. Their energy connects them to my labyrinth, and that my dear is what you're feeling when you try and step through the boundaries. It remembers the rules of my labyrinth and it will not let you break them. The walls are invisible and they are made of the underground, what you are feeling..." He took her hand in his and ran it slowly seemingly through nothingness, but she felt the strange chill and how it rose up high along the line drawn on the floor. She shivered with a mixture of the cold and from the contact with him. "...is your mortal reaction to the presence of a world outside time."
"I never once felt that during my time in the underground." Sarah said quietly. His gloved hand still held the bare flesh of her arm and she felt as if there were a fire spreading from his fingers through to her entire body.
"You were in my world then. Your body adapted instantly to the rules governing that world. Here you are feeling both worlds at once and you feel the difference, they clash inside you. The reason you are seeing what nobody else sees is that you have been to a place connected with the underworld, and it changed a part of you. You are connected to it now."
He paused and watched her eyes. When she was silent he started to speak again.
"So now you stand on a symbol of the other world you have been to and seen. The labyrinth is often used to represent a lifetime, the path being the life a person leads. The end is at the center. A person can no more go backwards in a labyrinth than go backwards in time."
Even if you get to the center, you'll never get out again...
"But I came back." she said confused. "I won back my brother and I came back to my own world and I've been here ever since."
"Are you sure?"
Foreboding writhed in her stomach.
"What do you mean, of course I am! I'm here aren't I?" she stumbled very slightly at the end of that, suddenly feeling dread at what she was about to hear.
"You were allowed to leave because that was part of the game we played, part of the rules, my rules, Sarah." he paused to let that sink in. "The labyrinth has rules of its own, and the rules mark the end being when the seeker reaches the center. I let you leave, but the rules of the labyrinth also meant for you to stay. Your soul was torn in half."
Her eyes widened in horror. Now she understood. Her feelings of separation from her own life, the dreams of the underground that would never stop. She felt herself begin to shake with rage.
"Do you know what happens to a person when their soul is torn in half?" he asked with lazy amusement. "It destroys them. It's not natural to divide a soul, and they start to waste away from a horrible incurable sickness. They feel as if they are festering from the inside, starting in the general vicinity of the heart, then spreading everywhere. I hear it's agonizing."
Sarah was so horrified and enraged that she had to fight to keep from screaming.
"So why tell me." she asked in a deadly silent voice. "Why not just sit back and watch and laugh while I wither away and die?"
"Ah, as much as I love my little trophy, it's been causing me a few, shall we say, problems. A human soul is not easily separated, should it happen the parts will constantly call and pull towards one another in order to return to its natural form. When they're separated by worlds the results are disastrous. Chaos ensues and the strongest walls can topple. So as much as I was looking forward to causing your destruction I am responsible for my kingdom and I will not watch everything I've built crumble to dust." as he spoke his voice became more and more passionate so that the very air seemed to tremble with his words. He closed his eyes and breathed deeply.
"So I have decided once again to be generous with you."
Her eyes showed her suspicion.
"I am giving you the age old choice of the underworld. Forgetfulness or eternal imprisonment in the darkness for your deeds. Drink the tea and you will forget and be forgotten by the Labyrinth. All inhabitants of the underground, including your traitorous little friends, will not know you. You'll have that part of your soul back and you can live out your short little life in this world. Everything will be undone from right after the moment you wished away your brother. Eat the fruit and you'll be whole, but you'll also be my prisoner. You'll belong to me. Forever."
She started at something he had said.
"Oh yes." his eyes glinted maliciously. "Your time in the labyrinth will be undone, but not your wish. The boy will be mine."
So that was it. He was forcing her to choose between giving herself over to him as a prisoner or giving him Toby, the half-brother she had grown to love who had not truly deserved the risk Sarah had taken with him in the hands of the goblins. He had already known what she would choose. Tears began to sting in her eyes and she closed her eyelids tightly to prevent them from spilling over.
"Damn you." her voice was barely a whisper. He chuckled darkly.
"So what will it be, Sarah? Oblivion or imprisonment?"
She said nothing for a long time. She opened her eyes and was met by his. She was amazed to see that it wasn't hatred or the sweetness of vengeance fulfilled in his eyes, but something else. Then she understood.
"It's not just the labyrinth is it?" she looked hard into his eyes. "It's you. When I rejected your offer to save Toby you used the labyrinth to bind a piece of me in your world, to ensure that I would have to return."
He took a step back as if he had been burned.
"You need me to make this choice because you aren't content to simply hold a piece of me. You can't imprison me, because you have no power over me." his eyes narrowed, subtly, but it was enough to make her falter briefly in fear, but then she found her courage and went on. "That's what all this is. You needed me to come willingly, to give you power willingly. You couldn't force me."
The look in his eyes was surprise and cold fury, but it was covering deeper emotions and she knew she had been right. She could see the pain, the loneliness of his long life, and it made her heart ache. She could also see the humiliation at having his immortal life be shaken so much in a mere thirteen hours by a foolish girl. The confusion of his own consuming emotions. Now he stood before that same girl who was now a woman wanting to either have her forever or erase all knowledge and memory of her.
He didn't speak.
"As you say, the choice is mine."
The silence stretched out for an eternity, hazel eyes staring into mismatched ones, their masks discarded. All the sounds of revelry from above were completely gone, leaving them in the absolute quiet. Sarah reached over, surprised at how steady her hand was, and picked up a single pomegranate seed. Such a small thing, but beautiful and perfect and full of potential power. She made her choice then. Jareth's face remained expressionless, as he watched Sarah crush it between he fingers. Slowly she reached up and gently dabbed the juice onto his lips. Then she kissed him.
Not a single one of her dreams could have prepared her for how truly wonderful it was. His arms came around her and clutched her with protective possessiveness against his body as they explored each other's mouths leisurely, the taste of pomegranate a sweet promise. It was the sort of kiss she could never have accepted or truly appreciated when she was only a girl, but now... He kissed her mouth, her eyes, her throat, and she felt as if she were completely melting. It was like a dam opening. All the emotions she had been holding in, all the dreams, everything, all came pouring out in a torrent. Tears streamed freely down her face as she buried her face against the silky flesh of his chest and she felt herself shaking hard from the sheer power of it all. A crystal appeared in his hand which he held for a moment before tossing it high into the air.
The world around them shattered, or at least part of it seemed to. The labyrinth drawing alone held as everything else cracked and flew apart, it widened and grew, becoming real, becoming a place of strange beasts, of trees and and odd plants, of towering stone walls and hidden dreams; and it completely engulfed the two of them.
Janice decided to go and look for Sarah, she had been gone a long time. She often worried about her friend, she would become distant and somewhat melancholy. She would spend hours by herself, sitting by the river, gazing out a window, or even just sitting and doing absolutely nothing. Whatever haunted her friend Janice could never convince her to speak of it.
At first she had looked around outside near the front entrance, but quickly realized that Sarah would have gone for some place away from the crowds of people. She headed for the back stairs and nearly tripped on something at the bottom. She cursed and yanked her mask off to see what the offending object was. She picked it up and held it to the light. A crystal. She thought of Tim and his juggling antics.
It must belong to somebody practicing contact juggling. she thought to herself. Must've gotten lost.
She looked at it for a moment longer, it looked almost as if it had a blue glow to it, but it was probably just a reflection of lights from upstairs. She decided she would drop it off in one of the theater rooms on her way outside.
She set off in search of her friend.