"Fifteen minutes!" someone with a headset yells.
I'm running down the hall in my black formal dress trying not to trip in my good heels. "Thanks for the heads up!" I call back. "Where are the goblins? Where is Jasper? Where is Oberon? Am I making demands to a bunch of deaf mutes?!"
Things are in utter chaos. "The Underwear Incident" is still sizzling after its debut and there is a horde of hungry, carnivorous, bloodthirsty press hounds waiting for us. Naturally in my world nothing is going as planned. It's a live or die moment and all of my characters have gone missing. At the moment I'd wager Jareth is snogging Sarah behind some curtain, Oberon is trying to seduce my coffee girl, and ten to one the goblins are making short of the M&Ms in the break room.
Said room is where I find my self. "Meep, Stench, Fash, Dink, Shriek, and you over their who's name I can't seem to remember we're on in fifteen minutes!"
"Really?" asks Meep reclining in a bowl of red candy.
Fash shakes his head holding material and a needle and thread. "I can't be done in fifteen minutes!" he shrieks.
"Fash are you sweating?" I ask concerned.
"He's all in a tizzy," explains Dink. "Because he wanted us to all wear matching vests."
"I can't get them done! No way! No how! I'm going to be a fashion disaster! And in front of all of those cameras!" he wails.
I consider my options. "I just might regret this, but whatever vests you may be lacking- you're welcome to go through my clothes. Just be ready in fifteen or you'll never see a thimble again!" I rush away hearing the shouts of relief.
I'm still missing the other main characters. My comedy debut and things are so off kilter that I'm considering never writing a comedy again. Or at the very least retiring certain characters with egos so big that they make Janet Jackson seem like a school marm. Squabble is coming out of Jasper's dressing room. "Lady Authoress!" he exclaims seeing me. "He won't do it."
My abrupt halt causes me to teeter in my heels. "What? Jasper won't do what?"
"Greet the press. He says that as a new character and being of the royal blood line he is in titled to certain…rights."
"Rights?" I repeat. "What- does he want rubber duckies, massage oils, cookies…a DVD of Fiddler On the Roof? What?"
Squabble looks most uncomfortable. He beckons me to draw near. The "rights" are whispered in my ear. My eyes pop open in alarm. "I did not write him to be that way!" I exclaim angrily. "Jareth the Goblin King- appear! Now!"
On cue with a puff of glitter and blue smoke the Goblin King appears. "You interrupted a perfectly good make-out session with Sarah, this had better be good!" he complains in his quiet sadistic way.
"Oh shut up- you get more action than any other character I know. I need your help. Your cousin is refusing to come out until he get's laid!"
He falters. "What? Even I don't make such demands. Squabble, go find a two-dollar whore would you?"
The goblin looks ready to obey.
"Jareth! I don't keep whores handy in my creative space!"
"Well maybe you should. There are only a handful of females about this place and all of them are partnered off. Well… except Meep," he adds thoughtfully.
Squabble clears his throat. "Believe me she'd rather drink bog water then couple with Lord Jasper."
The king gives me an annoyed look. "He's your character," he points out.
"I've only got ten more minutes to round up everyone to greet the vultures, so go in there, do what it is you do to get your cousin to behave, and get stage right before I make you all eunuchs!" The two males look warily at me. "It makes little difference to me- I ain't coupled off with any of you." I storm away.
The next seven minutes are spent in a whirl. I rescue my coffee girl from the jealous rage of Oberon's fairy wife; apologize to the Fire Gang- "You simply cannot put on a dance routine at the last minute." Convince Hoggle that having him and Ludo as head of security is an honorable job. Find Sarah and retouch up her makeup. Lastly assemble everyone stage right to exit out in all of our fan-service glory.
"M'lady, excuse me," says Sir Dydimus.
I look down- the little knight has his finest garb on. "Yes?"
"You look lovely this evening. I was wondering, that is if you don't have anyone else… I, uh, well…may I be your escort?"
The little fox's whiskers are twitching most nervously. The sight melts my heart. "That would be most fine my noble sir." I give him my hand with a smile.
Jareth leans over my shoulder. "He's a tad short for you," he snickers. "But more importantly- Jasper is here."
"Whose soul do I owe you for this?"
"Two minutes! Two minutes!" yells headset man.
The king laughs. "No souls… not this time at any rate. He demanded a story."
"Adventure or erotica?"
Sarah is over my other shoulder. "Guess," she says. I can hear her smile.
"Any time limit for its completion?" I ask smirking.
"None at all," answers Jareth. "You've got all the time in the world to give him what he wants. He'll probably be a faded character before he ever assumes the role of dashing romantic hero."
"That is someone you can smite with ED," says Sarah. We all laugh.
Introductions have begun. Valery and Eddie of "The Remembering" fame are center stage with microphones. Before I can even take two steps out onto the stage, the goblins have run ahead of me to meet the Fire Gang who are running out from stage left. To my absolute horror the opening chords of the Bee Gee's "More Than A Woman" can be heard.
"Jareth? Sarah?" I look around. I am completely left alone with Sir Dydimus who is pulling me out on to the stage. "What the-!" All of my characters are on the stage dancing what oddly looks like the electric slide.
"Oh, girl I've known you very well, I've seen you growing everyday," sings a voice. Amidst all of the dancing goblins, fieries, and yes even Sarah, Jareth appears with a microphone. "You got me working day and night, just trying to keep a hold on you!"
"Come on Lady Writer!" calls Meep. "Boogie Underground style!"
Cameras are flashing. Jareth circles around me, performs a John Trovalta hip shake, and moves near Sarah.
"C'me on lil' lady!" yells a fiery. "Chilly down!"
I heave a sigh. No sense in fighting it any more. I am my characters after all. "Oh what the heck! Dydimus!" I extend my hand.
"My lady!" He bows accepting my offer.
The entire crew of "The Underwear Incident" breaks out in the hustle.
Camera crane pulls back for a full dance scene finish.