Disclaimer: I left my ownership in an oubliette and now I can't remember where it is.

Author's Note: Just so you know, this is not me setting up shop in this fandom, this is me buzzing past in an airplane, tossing ficlets out the window as I zoom past. And if you believe that, well, that just proves you don't know me – can I just mention that I find you Labyrinth reviewers positively adorable? It is so refreshing to be believed when I say I'm not going to be writing any more of something, you didn't even make demands, which is something of a new experience these days. Of course, those of you that do know me (and what a quite an alarming number that was) wasted no time in adapting Chinese curses (May you develop a Labyrinth muse) or just blithely assumed that it was inevitable anyhow. Quality Control is so not impressed with this development. I just had a nostalgic whim, dammit! Hello Labyrinth fandom, my name is animegus farmus, I fear my whims, they love to torture me, alas that I must do as they say, for I am their slave. But at the first sign of an OC, I'm getting the hell out of here, brain-brain is FULL. And on that note, to those of you who know me, yeah, I know, I'm working on it. Stupid narrator.


...

It only takes a moment, she learns, to change the world completely. Her world at any rate. Nothing but a moment in which things unseen, things unnoticed or ignored, apparently meaningless or unrecognized in passing, collide suddenly, unexpectedly, culminating in an event, the consequences of which, however subtle, however unrealized, can't do else but make the old world fall in the wake of the new.

So simple really, because, try though she might, her impulsivity couldn't be cured overnight, or even over a year of nights. She's still very young after all, and there's only so much one can do against one's own nature. Still a little rash, and far too brave for her own good, she suffers from the common ailment of perceived teenage immortality, reinforced as it was by her defeat of a powerful adversary on his own grounds. And really, cutting through the alleys of the old town should have been safe, however dark it was – she'd done it a hundred times before, would have doubtless done it a hundred times more – the thought there could be anything worse than a stray dog lurking in the shadows hadn't even crossed her mind. The odds of danger finding her there had to have been at least a thousand to one, probably even more, it shouldn't have happened…

…but then again, what were the odds of a Goblin King showing up to answer a momentary, fleeting wish?

It is perhaps inevitable that she fought back, though possibly she shouldn't have – she's hasn't lost an ounce of that stubborn will or a smidgeon of determination, and so she fights a battle she knows she will lose. She is scared, and because she yet maintains that last wisp of childhood there is a moment where she wishes, if only to herself, that this night's living spectres might meet a bogeyman of their own, the scariest bogeyman she knows…

…and the world turns over, and it's no longer what it was before.

It only took but a moment and suddenly there are no bogeymen in the dark, even though he's standing right there, the scariest one she knows, because that isn't what she wanted. The bogeyman wasn't for her; she wanted a knight in shining armour. And because that's what she wanted, that's what he'll be. As he does everything…

…and because he is what he is, he'll make himself stand, he'll even try to smirk a little, maybe get in a snide word if she'd give him an opening, because, in the end, she can't help but expect it of him. Which is perhaps the most terrifying thing of all…

…for in this moment, as he stands quietly watching her, as he sways and does not fall because she would not want him to, this moment when she realizes he is waiting – for a wish, a command, anything – this instant she discovers the Goblin King can bleed, only a moment...

The moment she learns to fear the power she has over him.