Spring Break incident

Also known as

Sarah goes wild

By

PaisleyRose

&*&

Disclaimer

(Heavy sigh)

I don't own it,

I don't get paid.

And I'm thinking of changing the address to my brain!

(Ducks the goblin tossed at her head)

Okay, okay…

I don't own it..

I get to visit…

(Help, I'm being held captive by a horde of goblins.)

&*&

Prologue and Author's thoughts.

We all know that Sarah Williams is no ordinary girl. WE all know that she has attracted the attentions of a certain Goblin King. We all know she won round one.

What we don't know is what happened next. And that's where we all have our own ideas. One way or another we all pick up the thread and run with it… We all want the King to win in the end; we all want the girl who started out a whiny brat to come to realize that Jareth is not a bad guy… a bad boy, maybe, but not a bad guy… We all want… them to get together and get it on! I'm being honest here! WE love the Smexy scenes! We want more.. .more…(looks at the king and gulps,) I dirgress….

So this time out, as per the request from the blond seated on the Goblin Throne, I'm going to make her just past jail bait….(grumbles to herself..) In this story, our heroine is out of high school and in college and like so many she goes on Spring Break. Can I help it if she gets mixed up with the wrong crowd and wants to prove she's no goody two shoes? Can I help it if the Hurricane's go to her head? Is it my fault if she flashes her ta-tas at a camera? I'm not the one who told her to do a strip tease, or jump off the balcony! Is it my fault if Sarah's kid brother gets pissed at being left behind and alerts a certain King as to where she's gone? Is it my fault if New Orleans is the perfect place for a Goblin to take a break? Can I help it if matches once struck tend to burn? I'm not the one who started this you know, I'm just the one who reports what happened back to a bunch of squealing obsessed Fan-girls who want to be…. (Stops short,) I digress yet again… (Shrugs)

So okay… the time line is now a little more than four years later 1991, Sarah is 19 going on 20. (Jim Henson's Canon has her birthday somewhere between May1st and June 21st and the night of the storm is supposed to have been late August early September. And yes, yes I do go by Jim Henson's Canon as Brian Henson has no idea of what the hell he's doing!) Sarah is enrolled in her second year in College, attending New York University, and majoring in Drama, (some things never change, and we are so glad that they don't!) After a long battle with her overly protective father, and her very conservative stepmother, Sarah, backed by Mommy dearest, wins the battle and is allowed to go away for spring break with her roommates. Provided they stay with the widowed aunt of one of the roommates. However no one told Daddy that Tatie Hattie makes Auntie Mame look like a rank amateur… Should we warn him? Nagh, let the chips fall where they may!

Look out New Orleans… here comes the Goblins!

(You all thought you had it bad with Vampires and Witches. Ha!)

Chapter 1.

Sarah Williams listened to the last ditch attempt of her father to talk her out of this trip. Robert had been grumbling all the way to the airport. Sarah for her part, nodded, and tried to pretend she was listening, however the only thing on her mind was two weeks in the Big Easy… New Orleans! Once more she thanked the Gods and the Powers that Be that her mother, actress Linda Williams, could always be counted on to side with her and offer financial support. It was her threat to pay of Sarah to go and stay at a hotel that sent her father over the edge. He said she could go, as long as the three girls were going to be staying with and chaperoned by the widow Mason, Kristy Channing's aunt.

"Sarah," her father barked, "Are you even listening?" He parked the family sedan in the lot at the airport. "Have you heard a single word I've said?"

Apolitically she looked over at him, "I'm sorry Daddy," she winced. "I wasn't really listening." Sometimes truth was the best defense, her father had taught her that and now she was using it against him and his tirade.

Karen came to her rescue, "Oh for heaven's sake Robert," she said getting out of the car, and opening the back seat door for five year old Toby. "Give the girl a break! Give us all a break," she unfastened the boys seat belt and waited for him to step out. "She's agreed to all our demands, give it a rest."

Robert frowned as he slammed his door, "I don't think she should go. I don't care what Linda says, I don't think she should go."

"Neither do I," Karen exclaimed, "However, she's going." She held their son's hand possessively. "Just get her suitcase and let's get her to the gate." Turning to her step daughter, Karen motioned her to join her and head toward the terminal where the luggage would be checked. Karen, who could match Linda in the fashion sophistication department any day, was pulling her navy wool Chanel coat closer to brace against the chill.

Sarah a few years back, and in her bratty stage had thought her stepmother 'tacky'. It was Linda who had opened Sarah's eyes. Karen was not tacky at all but had conservative and classic taste. Linda had been the one to inform Sarah that not everyone dressed with flash. That even she herself didn't when she wasn't going to be where paparazzi were. Not everyone wore haute couture, nor should they. Now just a few years later, even Sarah had to admire Karen's taste.

"Thank you," Sarah said pulling her winter coat tightly about her. The last cold winds of March were blowing, and Sarah was looking forward to the warmth of the Crescent City. "I promise you Daddy," she said for the one hundredth time that day, "I'll behave."

"Spring break," he grumbled getting the case out of the boot of his car. "What moron came up with that idea? Certainly not a man with daughters… too pretty… bad idea…" he continued to grumble as he followed his family to the terminal. Once the bag had been checked he walked with his hands stuffed inside his coat pockets, still grumbling all the way to the gate. "Sending college kids off…missing Easter with family… stupid, stupid, stupid…"

Sarah waved at her traveling companions who awaited her arrival at the gate. "There's Kristy and Lizzie!" she said excitedly.

"You just saw them three days ago at school," Karen mused. "You're acting as if it's been years."

Sarah ran the rest of the way to the open embrace of her college roommates, and now her spring break companions. Both Robert and Karen had to smile at the way the three were carrying on. Toby, on the other hand was eyeing the two other college students as if they were intruders in his perfect life. Kristy Channing was the youngest daughter of an important CEO of an international pharmaceutical conglomerate. Her older brothers were already on staff and Kristy was expected to join them after her last year of college. She was a brilliant chemist, and was looking at a bright future. Yet to look at Kristy one would have thought she was just a pretty little thing. Her short auburn hair and bright hazel eyes set in a perfect oval face with perfectly arched brows gave her a rather pixyish appearance. Looking at her one would not equate her with a person who had chemistry formulas on her mind. In height and form she was not unlike Sarah, who she called her fractured mirror.

"I don't see why I can't come," Toby protested as he stomped a foot impishly. "Why does Sarah get to go and not me?"

Turning to look at the boy Sarah sighed, "Toby I told you, this is a big girls trip…you are not big, and you are not a girl."

"You're not so big," Toby said surly. "And what fun is just girls?"

"I'm still not comfortable with this," Robert handed the ticket to the agent at the gate, "How soon is boarding," he asked trying not to notice the scene Toby was about to make.

"We'll be boarding in a moment sir," the agent said.

Robert nodded, moving to hand the ticket packet to Sarah, he looked over at Kristy, "And your father is fine with you going to New Orleans?"

"He's from New Orleans," Kristy reminded him, "It's his sister we'll be staying with…"

"Don't look at me," Lizzie warned a bit too amused, "My folks are in the Bahamas on a second honeymoon. I haven't spent a Spring Break with them since I was in High School."

Robert rolled his eyes, "Well you're all over eighteen, and I guess we can't stop you."

"I can," Toby bellowed, "Don't go!" His beautiful blue eyes turned stormy.

Karen was letting the three girls try to reason with the fury of the five year old boy who was feeling left out. Sarah pleaded with him to be reasonable, Kristy offered to bring him back something lovely. Lizzie however told him to stop being a brat.

"You're going to be sorry," he growled at his sister. "Don't go!"

Sarah stood up, no more kneeling to her baby brother she told herself. "Toby, I'm going and you have to accept it." She hugged Karen, kissed her father and offered a kiss to the boy.

He refused, turned his back on her and growled, "You'll be sorry!"

"Toby," she gave him one last chance. "Be good and tell me to have a good time." When he refused to look at her she shrugged and bid her parents goodbye. She boarded with her girl friends.

Toby heard her footfalls as they moved away from him; he glared at the three, "You'll be sorry." He repeated.

--

Once on the plane, and seated and having taken off, Lizzie lit up a cigarette. Knowing that most parents didn't approve, she always held off, and tried not to offend. Drawing deeply she questioned Sarah. "What was that all about?"

"I have no idea," she answered honestly. "He was fine with me going to college… I don't see how two weeks away is any different."

"Two weeks," Lizzie said with a wide smile, "Of fun, sun and Southern Hospitality!"

Kristy loosened her coat, "I can't wait to get to the warmth!"

"When was the last time you visited," Lizzie asked the pert dark haired girl who had hatched the idea for this trip. Lizzie, taller and older than either of her two roomies was not nearly as innocent as either. Elizabeth Braden had been born to high society. Her parents were jet setters, in the truest sense of the word. Her grandfather had built an empire that now supported his jet setting offspring and theirs as well. Lizzie was blessed with the Braden good looks and intellect. Tall, lean and utterly blond, she was the picture of most young men's fantasies. Her Cerulean blue eyes could stop a man dead in his tracks and enslave him. She had been accepted at several Ivy League universes of note, and had opted for the smaller up state college. For the last two years, being roommates with Kristy and Sarah, she was ever so glad she had. While it would not really do her resume that much good, it had given her personal inventory an unexpected boost. While the New York social set saw her as the latest in a long line of the picture perfect Braden's, Sarah and Kristy saw her as simply Lizzie. She had enjoyed the last two years rooming with the pair, and even saw them as more than just friends or casual acquaintances from School. She took real interest in their lives, and knowing about Kristy's last visit to her aunt's house seemed very important.

Kristy looked thoughtful, "It was last summer; our family went to Aspen for Christmas." She giggled, "Daddy said Hattie was going to melt the snow…" She described the outlandish snow bunny outfits her aunt had worn.

"Wait," Sarah interrupted, "I thought you said your aunt was a widow…"

Guilt crossed Kristy's pretty face, "Well she is, sort of." She looked sheepishly at her friend. "Actually she's a widow seven times over."

"How old is she," Sarah gasped thinking of an elderly woman in outlandish ski outfits.

"Forty seven; come Mayday…. She's the youngest of the Channing siblings of my father." Kristy snickered delighted with thoughts of her favorite relation. "You gonna love Tatie` Hattie," a flicker of an accent slipped naturally into Kristy's usually perfectly crisp speech pattern. "Everybody does."

Sarah blinked, "Forty seven and married seven times," she gasped. "How old was she the first time she got married?"

"Sixteen, she eloped," Kristy laughed again, "Pépé was so mad, he threatened to skin Jolie Bodine alive, my father said." For the next hour and a half, Kristy told tales of her scandalous Aunt's antics. By the time they landed both Sarah and Lizzie felt like they knew the slightly wicked woman who had given an invitation to her home.

"Let me pick her out," Lizzie begged as they disembarked, "I'll bet I can…"

"Go for it," Kristy giggled.

Scouring the gate area with eager eyes, Lizzie looked for the woman who was supposed to meet them. "I don't see her," disappointment filled her voice. "Do you think she forgot?"

"Not likely," Kristy said shouldering the carryon Turkish carpet styled bag she took with her everywhere.

Sarah saw a commotion at the entrance of the terminal gate, and a large crowd gathering. "I'll bet that's her now," she recognized the type of hullabaloo, as it happened everywhere Linda Williams, her famous mother went. "Is that Tatie`Hattie?"

"Ah yes," Kristy said sounding as if she'd stepped out of a bayou. "That be the lady."

Hattie Channing-Bodine- Halifax- Mayfair- Larroquette - Devereux- Noel-Mason was cut from a bolt of cloth that was one of a kind. She was elegant without being ornate, dressed in a simple black dress with a white sheer scarf draped over her pinned on with one simple Gardena. Simple chic, long white opera gloves, an unfussy strand of natural pearls, and classic black heels and dark glasses covering her eyes. When she walked, it was like watching someone dance or glide effortlessly across the floor. At forty seven she had not one strand of gray in her long rich natural brown hair that was worn up this day in a French Twist. She resembled Audrey Hepburn and was always pleased at the comparison. Even her voice inflections were similar to the reclusive actress. Seeing the three girls at the gate she opened her arms to receive them. "Cher," the world sounding like she was saying 'Shar,' floated from her in a joyous expression of welcome.

Kristy moved forward first to greet her graceful and chic Aunt. "Tatie`Hattie," she kissed the proffered cheeks softly. "Thank you for asking us to come."

"Hush, let me look at my little chicks," she lowered the sunglasses covering her eyes; exciting hazel eyes studied the three girls. "Ohhhh ," she said with teasing puckered lips. "Look out New Orleans!" She offered her hand to Lizzie first, "You are the Braden girl," she surmised. "I am acquainted with your family's history, interesting people," she teased and won Lizzie's heart instantly. "And you are Sarah Williams," Hattie said turning to Sarah, ignoring the crowd that were still watching her. "I've seen your mother in several plays… you favor her, nicely." She placed a hand at Sarah's cheek, and for a moment her face turned serious. "But not entirely I think, no… not entirely." Her moment of thought-provoking earnestness vanished as swiftly as it had appeared. "We will talk later," she promised Sarah. Hooking her arm into her niece's she said merrily. "Come Beb's… we are going to run this gauntlet and race the wind home…"

--

Waiting for them when they collected their bags and left the terminal was a long black limo. The uniformed driver took charge of their luggage and stored it in the wide space of the trunk after having held the door open for the four ladies. Once he had returned to the driver's seat he opened the glass that separated him from his passengers, "Your orders, ma'am," he addressed his employer.

"Home, but take the scenic route so I can show off our jewel of a city to our guests, Stevens." Hattie instructed gently, respect for her driver in her tone.

"Of course," he agreed before closing the glass partition.

Turning her attention to Sarah and Lizzie who were seated across from her and Kristy, Hattie smiled cordially with enthusiasm, "Welcome to New Orleans, my city of magic and mystery." As they drove she explained that as it was still lent there were going to be few crowd out. "However, come midnight tonight, the bells of most of the Catholic churches are going to be pealing, tolling in Easter." She placed a thin, slightly bronzed colored cigarette in her long cigarette holder before lighting it. "I myself do not attend church, however if you three are so inclined, I would recommend tonight's service at Our Lady of Good Counsel, it is only a few blocks from my home… a easy walk, and a unforgettable experience." She smiled welcomingly. "Many of our citizens remember their roots and religion on Easter… However, come Monday all the revelers will return." It pleased her to see how the girls reacted to her city. "We will be home soon, and I think you will find my neighborhood fascinating, I know I do."

Hattie Channing-Bodine- Halifax- Mayfair- Larroquette - Devereux- Noel- Mason lived a Second Empire-style mansion in the Garden District of New Orleans. The house was a soft rose color and as the approached, Hattie told the girls the house had been dubbed, Mansion Rouge. Like a good many of the large homes on this street, the house and grounds were surrounded by an ornate cast iron fence. The design was a unique; it was roses on thorny stalks, with leaves twisted this way and that.

"My third husband, Morgan Mayfair designed that fence… I asked him was it to keep bad things out, or me in," Hattie teased as the driver of her long stretch limo pressed a button to automatically open the gate.

"What did he answer," asked Sarah spellbound by the woman's life.

"He didn't," laughed Hattie, "He was very smart!"

"It's a beautiful fence," Sarah observed as they passed into the inner drive.

"Yes, it is Beb," nodded Hattie. "I would not trade that fence for love or money." The driver turned the car into the circular drive at the front of the stately mansion. He parked, and got out to open the door for his female riders. "Stevens," Hattie instructed, "Take the car round back ask Roberts to see that the bags are taken up to the rooms for the girls. Ask him to have Millie unpack for the girls." She gathered the girls on her stoop, "Up that street, is the church." She pointed across the street then, "Over there is the house of that woman who writes the Vampire stories… she's a lovely lady, if a bit… unusual." Hattie gave lively descriptions of the neighbors in her tight knit little community. "We here in the Garden District consider ourselves to be a very special part of New Orleans. We have politician, artists, writers, and pillars of the community here." Her accent deepened. "Some, like me, have roots in French Creole traditions. I am very happy to try to introduce you to the real New Orleans, not the touristy one." She placed an arm about her niece. "Come, Char, tell me all the good and juicy gossip of your mama and papa!" She led the girls up the front stairs where they were greeted by a uniformed maid who smiled warmly at them.

Sarah could tell that the staff actually enjoyed working for the lady of this house. She could hardly believe how impressive the old mansion was. "Your home is lovely," Sarah said as they followed the hostess into a parlor where tea was already being set up.

"Thank you, Char," Hattie enjoyed the complement, and sat down to serve tea, "How nice of you to say so." Hattie handed a cup to Sarah.

"Kristy didn't say how long you've lived in the Garden District," Lizzie commented.

"Oh I've been here since I came to this house as a bride at sixteen," Hattie answered in her pretty Kreyol Lwiziyen accent. "Jolie carried me over that threshold and I've been here ever since."

"Your other husbands didn't mind," Sarah asked wide eyed with surprise.

Shaking her head, Hattie answered. "Why should they, they got to live with me," she laughed gently, and the girls joined her in the merriment.

--

Toby sulked all the way home, refusing to speak to his parents, and even refusing a briery meal out. He would not and could not be soothed, pacified or appeased. Once the car had turned into their drive, and he'd been let out, he stalked up the stairs to the front door where Dora, the new housekeeper was waiting for them. She stepped aside seeing the scowl on the face of the little boy. He stormed up the stairs, stopping at the landing, turning and screaming at his parents as they entered the house, "It's not fair!" his voice rose and so did the color in his face. "I hate all of you!"

Robert looked at Karen and sighed when he heard the door to the boy's room slam shut. "I thought we had a few more years before the dramatics started with him."

Shrugging Karen took off her coat, so Robert could hang it up. "He's precocious," she sighed. "He'll get over it, tomorrow we'll have that lovely egg hunt at the church, and he'll forget all about Sarah not being here." She promised.

Toby had no soon slammed the door shut than he threw himself down on his bed and grumbled. "She'll be sorry."

--

Far from the mundane world, hidden by layers of reality and counter-reality, there exists a place where magic flourishes and thrives. Magical mists, Fairy Mists, separate the various kingdoms of this realm. Some of the kingdoms are beautiful; some have a beauty that is dangerous.

Somewhere on the edge of imagination, there is a Labyrinth. It twists and turns like wicked thoughts, where no one - no man, woman, or child – had ever reached its centre. No one until her that is, the mortal girl who had done the impossible; Sarah Williams. There standing within the walls of a Goblin Town, is the castle of Jareth, the goblin king. The labyrinth is an enormous maze of incredible mandala like intricacy. The twisting walls interrupted here and there by lush forest, the complex web of waterways, the forbidding castle at the core. It is vast and magical, frightening and compelling at the same time.

The town and the kingdom for that matter was inhabited by Goblins, who most thought of as nasty little creatures whose greatest delight is stealing babies and turning them into goblins. But this can only happen if you wish for it. You must say exactly the right words for your wish to come true. 'I wish the goblins would come and take you away right now!' are the right words. When the goblins hear this phrase, they will come...

In the circular stone chamber of the Goblin King, surrounded by minions lounging in his draped throne, Jareth tapped his boot with his riding crop. 'Monotonous,' he thought to himself as he covered his face with his leather clad fingers, bored to tears. Jareth had seen it all, much too often. Two-headed sheep, curdled milk, banging pans, snatched nightclothes, barren fruit trees, shifted tables, moldy bread -- But this lot, rooting and prate-falling around all day, still found such tired old clichés a perfect riot every time. Pitiful, they were.

Jareth yawned, and looked wearily around the room. The walls had been decorated by goblins whose only thoughts were to please him. Dear god, he thought. How jejune could you get? He looked hopefully at the clock. Half past three, the sword-shaped hands indicated. He would have to do something to pass the time. It had been ages since anyone had wished a baby away. Months since he'd had a runner in his Labyrinth. He returned to tapping out a staccato beat on his boot.

Oblivious to their King's mood, the goblins in the great chamber went about their usual actions of mayhem. Some changed the pig in the helmet, while others drank ale from the leaky keg tucked behind the huge brass gong. Still other's tormented one of the stray chickens that had the bad luck to wander into the throne room. Two had found pea shooters and were taking target practice with the fowl. Jareth watched through his fingers and groaned. Was this all he could look forward to, he wondered. Endless boredom?

He stood up from the throne, stretched his arms and paced restlessly. Another goblin came dashing past. Jareth reached down and picked him up by the scruff of the neck. The goblin's eyes boggled at his, and Jareth flung him out of his path. The boggled eyed goblin bounced off the wall and scurried away unaffected by the incident.

Jareth paced once more, his mind far from this stone chamber, his memory having conjured up the image of a park, far, far away. It is an idyllic setting, warm and inviting. The late afternoon sun washes everything with a pink glow. Between the water and a line of lush fruit trees is a flower-strewn glade. The figure emerges from the trees and walks toward the water, crossing the stone footbridge that stands there. It is a young woman dressed in a flowing greenish-gray dress that swirls around her in the breeze. The fading pink light burnishes her hair and causes a flowered circlet she wears on her head to glow. She is breathtaking, a vision of innocence and grace. She stops to pick a flower and then turns suddenly as if she has heard something. Her lovely mouth opens to speak…

A discreet clearing of a throat disturbs the King's thoughts and the memory fades away. "Yes," Jareth asked turning to see who was in need of him now. "What is it?"

A tall goblin with a slightly more intelligent expression on his face bowed to the King. "You told us to tell you if ever the child needed you," he said bowing.

"The child," Jareth repeated, blanking for a moment.

"The boy," the goblin nodded, "The one you wished to adopt."

"Ah," Jareth smiled widely. "Toby, why didn't you say so… What's the need?" Moving to his throne, Jareth took a seat and listened.

"He's most unhappy," said the goblin as if that explained it all. "We are not sure how to address this need."

Thinking that anything was better than sitting around here waiting for a summons that was most likely not coming, Jareth stood up and with a wave of his crop transformed his garments into the Royal Regalia of the Goblin King. "Perhaps we should pay a visit to our ward." Goblins that had been dancing about wildly paused; some stared wide eyed and open mouthed at their monarch. Witnessing this swift change in their demeanor Jareth questioned, "What?"

One goblin, the one with the boggling eyes, asked hesitantly, "What if she's there?"

"We will deal with her if we have to," Jareth said looking forward to the possible skirmish and battle of wits that running into Sarah would involved. However seeing his forces didn't share his excitement, he added. "We've not run into her thus far on our visits." He opened a portal and a dozen or so goblins scurried in before him.

--

It was only three, but already the daylight was showing the lateness of the hour. Soon it would be dark. Karen had checked in on Toby, and finding him sulking asked if he'd like a snack. He declined the offer and asked to be left alone for a while. His mother frowned.

"You can't go on sulking for the entire time your sister is away," Karen warned.

"She'll be sorry," grumbled the boy as his mother shut the door on her way out. "She's going to pay for this!" He sat up on the bed, crossed legged and growled. "She'll be sorry!"

"I'm sure she will," a crisp accented voice agreed, "Who?" he added as he moved to the bed of the boy.

Toby looked up with a scowl, "Sarah," he said to his visitor.

Jareth reached out a hand to the chin of the child he came to visit so often in secret. The child he had minions watching with great care. "What has she done now," he asked in the voice that told Toby he was on his side.

"She's run off for Spring Break," accused Toby. "Leaving me here… alone…"

"Alone," questioned the King with a raised brow.

Relenting but only ever so slightly, Toby grimaced. "Okay, not all alone… I mean mom and dad are here, but that's not the same."

"No, I don't suppose it is," agreed Jareth. He knew that while Toby's parents were devoted to him, doting on him to distraction, it was Sarah who kept things like magic alive for him. He had watched from the branches of the tree outside this room while Sarah brought to life the old fairytales and fables for the boy.

"She'd going to be sorry," warned Toby, his eyes rimmed with darkness and full of anger. "I wish…" he began only to have a gloved hand silence him.

"Not so fast young man," hastened the King. "Word like that are difficult to take back." He removed the hand once he was assured the boy would not miss speak. "Thing of what you were about to say… do you want to lose your sister forever," the boy shook his head not, sniffling. "I didn't think so." Opening his arms, Jareth waited until the child was snuggling into him before he spoke again. "Would you like me to go and make sure that Sarah is… safe?" he offered with reasons of his own. Toby nodded, his head resting on the Goblin Armor breastplate worn by the King. Jareth smiled, "Tell me where she's gone," he coaxed.

"Some stupid place called New Orleans…" grumbled the boy, "For a stupid big girl's trip."

Having all the information that Toby could give him; Jareth soothed the boy and promised to make everything right. "You just rest, enjoy your time with your parents…I'll take care of Sarah." He heard Toby's mother call him down to dinner. "Go, I'll take care of everything," he assured the boy.

Moving back through the portal along with his minions, Jareth stalked the halls of his castle until he reached the chamber of the Castle Scribe and Scholar, Master Artemis, the brother of the wise man who stayed in the king's gardens. "Master Artemis," he called out as he entered the chamber that was piled haphazardly with scrolls and books and stay parchments.

From the upper level, looking over the balcony the Scholar answered, "Yes, Sire?" Dressed in ill-fitting human-style finery, plumed hat, lacey velvet tunic, bucket boots, baldric, and having read lot of human literary romances, Artemis was trying to live out his own personal fantasy. Not nearly as old as his brother, he was still young at heart.

Jareth smiled up at the outlandish figure above him, "What is Spring Break, and do we still have a residence in New Orleans?"

"Spring Break," questioned the Scholar back with surprise, "If I'm not mistaken sire, that's a yearly ritual of the young mortals who attend university… a sowing of oats as it were." He ventured down the circular steps.

"Like the rites of Pan," Jareth asked somewhat scandalized.

"Not precisely," Artemis chuckled. "Not too far from it, but not precisely." He placed a hand on the shoulder of his monarch and student. "Why do you ask, my lad?"

"I've never experienced this phenomenon," he stated as if that answered all questions.

"I see," Artemis sighed heavily, knowing there was trouble to follow. "And why the city of New Orleans?"

Jareth winked wickedly at his tutor. "Because you old fox, that's where Sarah has gone to…. Now pack up what we need… I promised Toby to keep an eye on her."

"You did what," asked the incredulous tutor. "Sire," he bellowed as the king spun heel and stalked out of the chamber. "You've lost your mind!"

"Not yet," Jareth chortled. "Not yet!"

&*&

Author's note:

Some of the passages here are taken out of context from the novel by A.C. Smith...Some from an early script by Laura Phillips and Terry Jones. Story by Dennis Lee. And some words are from the story book by Louise Gikow. Corrections and additions by moi.