Oy! I am SO glad to be back in the game after that unbearably long hiatus!

Anyone who reads my work knows that I just recently completed "I Hate Teenage Drama" for Kingdom Hearts and am now going to try my hand at my favorite Jim Henson movie, Labyrinth. Please bear with me, since it is my first try; it's definitely not as good as some of the other Labyrinth fics I've read, but I think it'll be pretty good for what it is (I say that so often!). Please enjoy this enchanting prologue to my very first Labyrinth story! (fanfare!)

"That's not fair!"—Sarah, from the movie

Story Title: The Girl, The Goblin, and The Unicorn

Summary: Sarah has been chosen for a special rescue mission! But in a world where not everything's what it seems, she'll have to be on her guard. So will Jareth. (sigh, the first time I've ever typed his sweet name in fanfiction! Faint)

Prologue: The Pool of the Chosen
The members of the council murmured as they took their cushions around the Pool; only the ten councilmen and the queen were permitted to gather at the Pool under the full moon in the Quiet Clearing.

The queen snuck a flowerette while waiting for the other councilors to arrive; there were seven so far, all elves. Who else could serve on the Elf Council?

The fragrant scent of violets rushed from between her lips, earning her a look of disapproval from Lord Gimble. She smirked at him with a half-smile as if daring him to chide her like he always did. He said nothing in light of the circumstance and contented himself with the fact that at least Her Majesty was wearing a dress and tiara, like she was supposed to.

The last three council members arrived, hastily shrugging off their traveling cloaks as they sat Indian style on their seats. Her Majesty snuffed out her flowerette, wrapped it in a handkerchief, and stuffed it in her traveler's bag before anyone else could notice. A small breath of wind sighed in the trees behind them, through the moss and the willow branches, rippling the reflected moonlight in the pool and a hush fell over the council.

It was time to begin.

The queen slowly and gracefully rose to her feet, her pale green skirt regathering itself from the bunches it had become as she sat. Her eyes—one a dark emerald, the other a deep, glittering sapphire—fixed themselves intently on the dark blue of the sacred waters.

"Members of the Council," she said in a loud, clear voice, "as we are all aware of the crisis at hand, I see no need to explain why I have summoned you all here. But for the sake of formality, I will.

"We are here to gaze into the Pool of the Chosen to find the one who would rescue our missing friend."

As the Council murmured in agreement, the queen knelt at the Pool; in one practiced motion, she unhooked her right earring, a dark emerald shaped like a pendulum on a gold hoop, and held it in the water, finger and all. She moved her left knee up and propped her arm over it, keeping her focus on the pool. She closed her eyes.

"Sacred pool," she said reverently, "in the heaviness of our hearts and the fullness of the moon, we humbly kneel at your shores and present our troubles before you."

The pendulum earring glowed under the surface; all eyes were glued to the vision appearing in the water in a swirl of green and blue.

A unicorn neighed in fear and distress, crying for someone to help it. When it disappeared suddenly, the councilmen whispered in disturbed voices. The queen kept her troubled eyes pointed downward and concentrated.

"Sacred pool," she continued, "if you can, reveal to us the villain responsible for this atrocity."

The Council leaned forward anxiously now, hanging over the edge of their seats to get a good look. A general shape started to materialize, but a gust of wind swept into the clearing and destroyed it. Only the queen understood what that meant.

"It doesn't know," whispered an elf.

"It's an omen," muttered another.

"No good will come of this," said a third.

"Silence," the queen calmly commanded, "All is not lost. The villain is always the hardest to find. That is why we have heroes. Sacred pool, reveal to us the champion best suited to rescue our friend."

This time the image was clear and all that hovered around the pool could see the face of the chosen one. Even the queen could not hide the surprise in her eyes, but they betrayed only a fraction of the inner turmoil that now plagued her.

"That one?" she exhaled softly, "Surely not! There must be some mistake.""My queen!" Lord Gimble reproached her, "Never in the history of our kingdom has the Pool chosen wrongly!" She met his eyes levelly, her coolness back.

"Never in the history of our kingdom has the Pool chosen a mortal girl," she said, "especially not this one."

"With due respect, my queen," one of the elves sat up, "I fail to share Your Majesty's surprise at this choice, considering the qualities required for such a task are bred into this mortal girl, especially the protective magic she has over her."

"Rightly spoken, Lady Michal," the queen nodded, "but that's partly what I'm worried about." The elf lady did not press her further, for which Her Majesty was grateful.

"Well, now," she said as she withdrew her earring and put it back on, "I thank you all for coming. I must now ask you to return home and reconvene in the morning at dawn in the council chambers. You'll be investigating the crime; when I return, I want to know who stole our friend.

"I have an investigation of my own to pursue," she finished as she donned a royal cloak, "You all know how to reach me. Until I return, ta-ta."

She seemed to become the hawk the instant she turned with the rustling of her skirt, a beautiful female hawk with gold and white feathers with yellow legs and a green diamond-shaped mark on her head.

She flew toward her destination as fast as her powerful wings could carry her, venting her frustration with every beat.

As she flew, one disturbing thought bounced around her head, festering like a wound.

'Jareth is not going to like this.'

Author's Review:
Mwahahaha! Not bad for a prologue, eh?

Little note here: Lady Michal is pronounced like "McCall," okay? I got the name from a Nest Entertainment cartoon video I like to watch! (I don't own them or the name, btw.)

I'm a little pressed for time today (which sucks, this being my first Labyrinth story), so I'll just leave the R/R routine to you guys. And I hope those of you who stuck with me for my Kingdom Hearts stories will also enjoy this! (please?) Love y'all!