The Goblin King watched as the ablation stared out the window, the only thing in that room that even suggested there was a world outside the tower where he kept her. When she looked outside, she always seemed so young, so innocent, and the sunlight would always make her eyes sparkle just right. It was too much. It reminded him of her other half.
He decided that he would have to get the window filled in with more bricks. It was a nice sentiment, to give her a way to see what was out there, but he couldn't handle seeing her every time she gazed outside.
"Come here, sit down on the bed, next to me," he commanded. He had never bothered to give her a name. She didn't really need one, he reasoned. After all, she knew when he was addressing her, because there was no one else he could possibly be talking to. Even if he did decide to give her one, the only name he could think of was "Sarah", and he was trying to keep those memories at bay.
The girl sat next to him on the bed. It still surprised Jareth that after all those years, she didn't look a day older than sixteen. The eyes she curiously stared at him with still looked just like-
No, he told himself in his mind. I am not to remember ANYTHING of then if I can avoid it. His face began to look more troubled as he argued with himself, and the girl looked back at him, knowing something was wrong, but unsure how to respond. The concerned look on her face broke his inner quarrel, if only temporarily.
He brushed his hand through her hair, gently stroking her face underneath with the tips of his fingers. "It's alright," he said. Her expression didn't change. She didn't believe him.
"Come, lay your head on my lap," he beckoned, trying to sound gentle. She nervously complied, even though this was not the first time he'd asked her to do this. She knew he would never harm her, or do anything if she hadn't already consented, but she still felt that laying on someone in any fashion was an action reserved only for intimate lovers.
Once more, Jareth continued to stroke her hair, content to hear the sounds of her breathing, determined that he would be gentile until the time came where she would finally love him.
As she lay there, afraid to move without his command, she gazed out the window again, though from that position she could barely see the sky. She began to daydream about what it would be like outside the tower, unsure how to imagine it, because the tower was all she had ever known.
What if she never loves me? Jareth asked himself. It will be just like her all over again, only this time, there's much more at stake. His inner arguments augmented. There was only one thing that could calm him down, but would she?
Suddenly, the girl felt him tug at her hair, close to her scalp so that he had a grip on her. He pulled her up to his eye level, and gave her a long glare. "What did I do," she asked. She normally remained quiet in his presence. Something about her voice set him off. She didn't know what, but he did.
Normally her voice infuriated him, the memories would all rush back at once, drowning him into despair, but this time, he needed to hear it. He needed to hear it say those words.
"Why don't you love me?" he asked her. Before she could answer, he continued, hoping to get her to say what he wanted, no, needed to hear. "I ask for so, very little. All I want is your love, and without it, I am nothing."
The girl, terrified both of telling the brutal truth and of lying to him, didn't know how to respond. He still had a strong grip on her hair, making it hard to think. "I don't know," she finally said. "I don't know why I don't love you."
That was his last straw. He threw her on the bed, which he had conveniently situated in a corner where she couldn't escape him. No matter which way she tried to run, if she tried to run, she would have to get through him.
But she didn't try to run. She began to weep.
"It's not that I'm not trying-" she began.
"LIES!" he interrupted. "You're NOT trying, or you would have loved me by now!"
"There's just something that's keeping me from loving you!" she tried to explain.
Jareth was quiet. He was still angry, but he wanted to hear her excuse.
"It's not that I won't love you," she said, trying to wipe her tears away, even though they kept falling. "I can't love you."
Jareth stood from the bed, and exited the tower, locking the door behind him. Yes, it all made perfect sense now, didn't it? She can't love him. Love is not in the half that is here. Love must be in the half that was left behind. All those years he'd spent, trying to gain her affection, a complete waste of his time.
The girl had been frightened so much that she cried herself to sleep. When she woke up the next morning, there was no Goblin King, and her window was gone. Instead, what she found was a small plate on her nightstand. On it was a peach, cut into slices, as she always liked her fruits to be served.