"The Key to The Kingdom"
(c) Rebekah L. Copeland, Aiijuin Graphics 2011
*Disclaimer * Based on "Labyrinth" by The Jim Henson Company (c) 1986
Genre: Quest/Fantasy/Action/Adventure, Rated: K - for every age group
**Chapter one follows immediately below the brief full summary and the writer request. Thank you!
Young Jason Williams is the son of Toby Williams… or is he really?
Jason 'Jaye' Williams has only two days left before his tenth birthday and plans on spending it in the ballpark with his friends, however fate has different plans for him. After being sent home from school on suspension for something that clearly wasn't his fault, his father gives him an amulet that causes Jaye to get kidnapped in the middle of the night by Captain James Hook. As the boy is sailing on his way towards Neverland, he's about to discover that he really isn't the person who he thought he was all along!
Without much choice in the matter, Jason winds up having the most exhilarating and life-impacting adventure across the universe in order to find the key to his identity and the answers to his questions. Unfortunately, everything that he needs lies somewhere in the heart of the Goblin Kingdom and it is the one place that he can't seem to reach!
Read Jaye's story as he meets new and familiar faces from Neverland, Fantastica, Oz, Wonderland and more in: "The Key to the Kingdom"
Writer request: I implore you to read at least the first seven or eight chapters of this story before you pass judgement on it, or simply turn away. They are not that long. "Key to the Kingdom" was carefully designed to be a quest story, with undertones of Sarah Williams and Jareth the Goblin King implied within the background. It IS a Sarah/Jareth story, and they DO eventually enter into the plot, but most of the story has been written from a slightly different perspective, and therefore pioneers towards a new path that most other writers of S/J fanfiction rarely dare to venture into. Remember! The greatest adventures in life always begin with a first step! Be brave and give it half-a-chance! Thank you for reading!
Chapter One: An Inconvenient Truth
Jason Williams always knew that he was different from the other boys his own age, but the most frustrating thing was that he never knew exactly, why? At nine years old, it didn't bother him that he was taller than most children in his class, nor did it upset him that he scored less-than-average in his arithmetic class. Ha! In his opinion, math was boring anyway. No, Jason just knew that something was amiss in his life, which made him feel a bit misplaced in the Big Apple, and also within the upscale condo home, belonging to his mom and dad.
Williams plunged his head deeper into his hands, as he sunk miserably into the chair facing the principal's office door. He knew that he would be grounded for sure this time. All hopes of his tenth birthday party in the ballpark with his friends would be shattered once Mrs. Hibbartstein called his dad. In fact, Jason was already imagining his dad's ice-blue eyes squinting down at him in disappointment. Jason tried to muster up fake tears, but he stopped once Maggie Johnson walked by. With her chocolate brown pigtails, and beaming turquoise-colored eyes, he thought that she was sort of cute, for a girl. Although Maggie probably didn't know that Jason even existed, he simply didn't want to chance having her see him cry, and then – worst of all – having her think that he was a sissy for doing so.
"Mr. Williams," a voice squeaked from the partially-opened principal's door. Jason stiffened up, stood up, and did the best that he could in order to keep his knees from buckling under him in fear. Slowly, he pushed the door open, as a tiny, round, pasty face greeted him with a disapproving scowl from the other side of a gigantic, knotted-mahogany desk. Mrs. Hibbartstein was not much taller than Jason Williams, and her office reeked of that odious musty smell that comes from freshly tilled dirt. In fact, Jason mused to himself that Mrs. Hibbartstein was akin to a rotten old potato that had been plucked from a late summer garden with her portly, shriveled figure, and bland, rumpled, brown suit that she wore. He might have laughed to himself upon seeing her, if the situation were not so dire.
Mrs. Hibbartstein, with her chubby, pink fingers, beckoned Jason towards the opposing chair facing the front of her desk. Her whole office was modern, sterile, and white, sort of like one of those faux offices in the IKEA Warehouse downtown. Something about the contrast between the office setting, and Mrs. Hibbartstein's appearance nagged Jason's aesthetic perception until his brain had gone numb from the perplexity of it all!
Williams swallowed dryly in anticipation of his punishment and sat ever-so-carefully, so as not to make a sound, into the cool, metallic seat. He wondered if the principal might have forgotten that he was there if he behaved quietly enough. Sadly, Hibbartstein never took her black, beady eyes off of Jason the whole time since he had first entered her office. She looked down from the edge of her bulbous, red nose that was crowned with the most absurd diamond-shaped spectacles on its bridge. She began to ask in a bleating voice that was much too high-pitched to seem very threatening, "Do you know why you are here today, Mr. Williams?"
Jason shook his head, but inside his chest, his conscience was screaming at him that he knew exactly why he had been sent here. However, before his mind even had a chance to chide him, Mrs. Hibbartstein opened a plain, manila folder on her desk and read, "Destruction of school property, not paying attention in class, and attempting to throw your teacher out of the window when he caught you in the act of destroying school property…"
"But that wasn't my fault!" Jason shouted in defense to the last on his list of charges. He knew that he hadn't actually tried to throw Mr. Bramble out the window, but he did think about throwing him out of the window on occasion - especially when he had received a low grade on his multiplication quiz last week. Mrs. Hibbartstein had not finished and cut Jason off before he could sputter anymore, "AND, you used profanity!"
"But… I," Jason floundered for lost words. He knew that he was downright guilty, but it was the only words that had managed to fall from his lips as he witnessed his classroom teacher dangling out the third-story window of the inner-city school by his fingertips. Jason finished, "I didn't mean it."
Then, the proceeding dreadful words silenced Jason completely. "I've called your mother and father, and have explained to them your offenses, Mr. Williams. They are driving here as we speak, and should arrive in a few minutes. I can tell you that they aren't very happy right now."
Jason wondered why they would be, especially with the extensive list of charges -including murder - thrust wrongfully upon him. This time, the tears honestly welled up into his mismatched eyes, as he balled his fists stubbornly into his lap. Why did every bad thing seem to happen to him? The missing family cat - Mister Twinkletoes, the hole in the closet, and the missing shoes. Not his fault, but he got blamed! Williams sniffled as he thought about his baby sister. She never had these problems. Of course, she had only learned to talk last week, with her first word being 'Jaye.' It was Jason's nickname that his mother and father had called him. Only Jason's teachers and grandmother had ever called him 'Jason.' Jason 'Jaye' Williams wiped his left emerald green-colored eye, and then his right cornflower blue-colored eye. Jason's mother called Jason's eyes, 'heterochromia iridis,' which sounded more like a magical incantation, in Jaye's opinion, rather than a syndrome of two different colored eyes. It didn't matter anyhow. Nothing mattered anymore anyway…. Jason's parent's were coming, and he was going to be grounded forever.
As Jaye finished his last thought, a light tap at the door sounded. Mrs. Hibbartstein glanced upwards and straightened her diamond-shaped spectacles before squeaking, "Come in."
Sure enough, Jason's mother and father entered still dressed in their work scrubs. They must have driven straight from the hospital without changing first, which was unusual, because Jason never saw his mother in her long, white doctor's coat and name badge. Jason's dad looked frazzled, with his golden blonde hair twisted this way and that, as if he had raced to clean up from a post-operative procedure. Both of Jason Williams' parents worked in the local medical facility around the block from the school. They were both doctors.
Mrs. Hibbartstein stood up from her seat and shook the hands of Jason's parents as she said, "Toby and Alexia Williams, I presume?" Jason twisted his lips in disgust. As if she didn't already know it was them! After all, this was hardly Jason's first detainment in the principal's office, and this was hardly the first time that Jason's parents had been called into Mrs. Hibbartstein's presence.
Jason's dad, Toby, didn't waste any time, as he asked nonchalantly, "What's he done this time?"
Hibbartstein seemed to be enjoying herself as she ran through the list of charges, all while pausing between each one to gauge Mr. & Mrs. Williams' reactions. As she had hoped, each phrase brought on a new gasp from Alexia, and a foot tap from Toby. When the parents and principal had finished discussing Jason's fate, the boy was slapped with a three-day suspension away from school. Great, Jaye thought, as he knew that his tenth birthday party was only two-days away.
Jaye was escorted into the back of Toby & Alexia's silver Volvo. While they drove him home, he mulled out the side window – wondering when he would get 'the lecture.' However, much to Jaye's surprise, his parents were arguing in the front seat of the car, and not paying him much mind. Alexia Williams, who was a specialist of neuroscience, wanted to transfer Jason into another private school. She blamed the public schooling system for all of the problems that Jaye was having. Toby, who was an ICU medic, thought that it was time to tell Jason the truth.
Jaye hadn't really been paying their conversation much attention, but he was curious to know what the 'truth' was. Well, it hadn't mattered anyway, because the whole topic of his punishment was derailed as Alexia argued that Jason was too young to know the truth, and both parents began to shout at each other instead of at Jaye, much to his relief.