Lying in my bed I hear the clock tick,
and think of you

caught up in circles confusion-
is nothing new

Flashback-warm nights-
almost left behind

suitcases of memories,
time after-

Sarah was awake. It was late, and exactly a year from the night when she had wished Toby away to the Labyrinth, the Underground, and him. The clock in the hallway chimed the hour softly – midnight. She wanted to hear it chime thirteen to mark the occasion, but that clock wasn't his clock.

She always thought of him now when the clock struck twelve or one, wishing that instead it would chime thirteen. He had reordered time for her once, but it hadn't lasted. Some part of her had known that it wouldn't and accepted it. Another part of her wished that there had been a way for her to have her dreams and Toby back in his crib.

She had run and re-run the Labyrinth several times in her dreams, visited the Escher room even more times than that, and confronted him in her mind over and over. Sometimes she dreamt of him when she was awake as well – particularly all the things that they had both said.

Nothing could change what had been said. He had told her that before it all began.

"What's said is said."

Still, sometimes she wished that she could take it back, just to see what might have happened.

The only thing she dreamed of more often than all the times they had spoken was that one time when she had been in his arms, and neither of them had said anything.

He had danced with her, and she could remember perfectly how sad he looked, as if he had already known that she would leave him in the crystal dream.

She'd joined the local dance school because of how often she had that dream, but none of the people she danced with measure up to him.

sometimes you picture me-
I'm walking too far ahead

you're calling to me, I can't hear
what you've said-

Then you say-go slow-
I fall behind-
the second hand unwinds

Sarah wondered if he was awake right now, watching her or thinking about her. She still talked to Hoggle, Sir Diddymus and Ludo, and Hoggle sometimes admitted to her that he spent most of his days in his throne room. None of the goblins were allowed to go in there any more, except for the one that brought him his meals.

Sarah closed her eyes and imagined that he was sitting across his throne, staring into one of his crystals, watching her as she was lost in her own daydreams about his world.

Sarah had never tried calling him to her mirror. She didn't even let his name drift through her thoughts if she could help it. She certainly never let it cross her lips. His name was sacred,

powerful, and she felt sure that he would hear her if she so much as whispered his name in her sleep.

She didn't know that she did, almost every night. She didn't know that he came to her windowsill every single time, that he sat there until the grey time just before dawn before turning from her and flying away back to the Underground.

It was a winter morning when Sarah finally caught him before he left. The sun rose later in winter, and normally she did her best to sleep in as well, but that morning she had to be at school early to help set up for the play they were performing. Her alarm clock, kept under her pillow so that she would both hear and feel it when it started ringing, forced her mind into a fuzzy awareness while it was still dark beyond her window.

That fuzzy awareness rapidly became crystal clarity when her green eyes caught sight of black gloves, white poet's shirt and a halo of golden hair.

Just as her eyes locked on his, he disappeared out the window. Sarah could just make out his shape as he flew away on silent wings.

if you're lost you can look-and you will find me
time after time

if you fall I will catch you-I'll be waiting
time after time

Sarah took up art classes not long after what she had decided to call the 'too early in the morning' incident. This meant that, with her dancing every Thursday and Friday night, and her art every Monday and Tuesday afternoon, she was able to effectively dodge all offers to date from the boys in her class who were starting to really get the idea that girls were not only attractive, but could also be interesting enough to spend more time with than just making out.

She babysat Toby every Saturday still, and didn't complain any more. She knew she couldn't ever go out with a boy after she had danced with him. It was hard enough dancing with the other people in her dancing class. They almost all had wandering or sweaty hands. Not like him.

In her art classes, she mostly worked in charcoal and coloured chalks. They were soft, and the colours, and the way that she could use those colours, felt the best for the pictures she wanted to make. Pictures of the Labyrinth. Pictures of Hoggle, Ludo, Sir Diddymus and Ambroscious, of the fairy that had bit her, of the fiery creatures who had tried to take her head off, of the 'helping hands' and the confused door-guards, the worm who had been so helpful when she was becoming frustrated with the complete lack of turns in the Labyrinth. Pictures of the goblin city and the castle beyond, of the strange room that had looked like Escher's room of stairs. She had reached for the oil paints when she wanted to do a picture of the Bog of Eternal stench though. It needed that more slimy look that couldn't be achieved with the coloured chalks.

after my picture fades and darkness has
turned to grey
watching through windows-you're wondering
if I'm OK

secrets stolen from deep inside
the drum beats out of time-

Sarah never did a picture of him though, for the same reason she avoided his name. She was determined that her heart didn't want to see him, but every time she denied herself, she hurt more inside. The closest that she had ever come was to draw the ballroom, filled with its masked dancers, and herself dancing in the middle of them all, with him of course, but he was wearing a mask as well.

The woman in charge of the art class had remarked that it was the first picture that Sarah had put herself into, and it was particularly interesting that she was in the arms of a figure of her imagined world – or was it really someone she was secretly fond of?

No, Sarah had answered at the time. How could she be fond of someone if she didn't know them? Besides, the girl in the picture only looked like her, clearly the girl in the large white dress was younger. Sarah had lost a couple of inches around her waist, and gained them around her bust, in the last year or so, but she saw no reason at all to tell the woman the truth. She wouldn't be believed anyway.

When Sarah got home that night, and after she had put the picture up on the wall, she had gone to her window to look out at the tree just beyond, wondering if that had been enough to call to him, to let him see into her life again during her waking hours as he seemed to when she was sleeping.

She had not forgotten that single time she had woken early and seen him disappear out her window.

if you're lost you can look-and you will find me
time after time
if you fall I will catch you-I'll be waiting
time after time

Sarah lay awake on her bed, listening to the clock chime midnight. It was two years now since she had been to the Underground, a little over eight months since seeing him disappear out her window that winter's morning. Again she thought that it would be better to hear the clock strike thirteen, but she could not draw her mind from the words she had spoken when she had left the Underground, his kingdom, behind.

"For my will is as strong as yours, and my kingdom as great. You have no power over me."

This night, as she waited for the thirteenth chime that would not come, Sarah wondered for the first time if her words meant rather that he was weak-willed, that his kingdom was as insubstantial as a thought, and that perhaps... she had no power over him either, except what he allowed her to have.

It was a new thought, but one that would not have surprised her. She had spent a lot of time in her own company over the past two years, apart from the time she spent in the company of Hoggle, Ludo and Sir Diddymus.

Her whole life, at least currently, was still being affected by her time in the Labyrinth. She didn't care though, and honestly would not have changed anything of that night even if she could. Well, maybe one thing. Sarah had wanted to accept the crystal from him, very much. If only there had been a way to save Toby and accept his offer.

you said go slow-
I fall behind
the second hand unwinds-

It was Sir Diddymus who conveyed the message to Sarah that he had taken ill, and that his subjects – the more intelligent ones anyway – suspected it to be a matter of strong emotions rather than a disease. It had been getting worse for months, but Hoggle, Sarah's usual visitor, had been very stubborn about refusing to tell her. Ludo wasn't one for words really, and was always too busy being happy to see Sarah to remember to tell her about him.

Sarah had finished Sir Diddymus' portrait and given it to him before thanking him for his company and bidding him farewell – he had to feed Ambrocsious after all.

Alone, Sarah finally let those forbidden syllables slip past her lips. She needed to see for herself, needed reassurance that Sir Diddymus might be wrong this time as he was about the smell of the Bog of Eternal Stench. She didn't know what would happen after, she only knew that, for the first time in so long, she was willing to admit that she wanted to see him.

"Jareth," she whispered.

"Sarah," he answered, appearing in her window.

Her green eyes widened slightly in surprise. He looked exhausted, with dark circles under his eyes and even thinner than he had been when she had last seen him.

if you're lost you can look-and you will find me
time after time
if you fall I will catch you-I'll be waiting
time after time

...time after time
time after time
time after time
time after time

"You look terrible," Sarah observed.

"And you look beautiful."

"Thank you. Sir Diddymus said you were ill."

"Lovesick, Sarah, and tormented these past years. I have noticed that you became an artist. Your pictures are very good."

"Thank you. Hoggle told me you had banished everyone from your throne room."

"I couldn't bare company."

"I see."

"Sarah, will you come away with me? Forget this world and just come away?" he begged, taking one of her hands gently between his gloved fingers and pulling it closer to his heart.

"For my will is as weak as yours, and my kingdom as frail," she answered, laying her free hand over the top and taking that last step so that there were barely inches between their bodies.