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Prologue

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Nov. 30th, 2005 | 01:18 am
posted by: t_storyteller in its_onlyforever

QUEST: --
CHAPTER: --

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Sarah began to approach Jareth, the white long tailored dress billowing around her ankles from a breeze from where she could not tell. Her eyes were fixed on the goblin king's and her face stoic. She'd reached the end of her mission and now it was time to deliver the final blow. "Through dangers untold and hardships unnumbered," she said, "I have fought my way here to the castle beyond the Goblin City. For my will is as strong as yours, and my--"

"Stop! Wait!" He raised a hand, palm turned toward the girl. "Look, Sarah," Jareth offered to her, raising a crystal sphere perched atop his fingertips. His eyes that barely expressed any symblance of emotion carried within them a vague shadow of hopefulness. "Look what I'm offering you. Your dreams! I ask for so little. Just let me rule you, and you can have everything that you want."

Sarah watched his face, her gaze unbroken even to the crystal that he presented on its outstretched pedestal. Silence was the ruler between them for what seemed as a moment frozen in time atop the lone island the pair occupied. Her lips parted, and from them spilled the dagger that was to be the key to her release. "You have no power over me."


She shot up to a seated posture in her bed, finding nothing but the dark of night surrounding her skin that'd been dappled with cold sweat. She breathed heavily, her heart still pounding in her chest so loud she barely heard the rain that was pouring against her bedroom window. They were happening more and more; these dreams of the final showdown with the Goblin King, Jareth. The victory that'd won her brother back from the clutches of the Labyrinth one full year ago at the stroke of midnight. At first it the dreams were every now and again until the past couple weeks. Then they were coming every night, sometimes more than once. What could this mean? Why was this resurfacing? She looked at the clock which read 11:55pm. Suddenly, as though aching through a premonition, she pulled the blankets off of her and pulled herself free from the comforting mattress. The light was switched on and it was to the drawer of her vanity that her hands were quick to reach. Without hesitation she began to rummage roughly through the scattered contents. "Where is it?" She groaned in discontent. "It's in here somewhere! Ah!"

In her hands she held something she'd not bothered to look upon since her past adventure's end. A white paperback book with the illustration of what appeared to be a maze on the front. Without thought she opened the book to the middle and froze upon finding that no text was printed. She flipped through a few more pages and found the same thing. "What is this?!" She asked herself and threw the book down on the vanity's desktop, then looked at her increasingly terrified face in the mirror. Just then the clock on the wall behind her rang once. Her head snapped around to look at it as a bolt of lightning accompanied by a crack of thunder animated the night outside her window. "One," she counted. After a brief moment, "Two." Then, "Three." Another bolt of lightning and clap of thunder rolled outside. "Four," she counted as each tone of the clock rang, her chest tightening as anticipation combined with adrenaline seared her veins. "Eleven," was the count, then, "twelve.." She waited. No final tone came. No other sounds than the tick tock talking to the steady rain outside. Her held breath was finally released in a sigh of relief. Her eyes turned back toward the vanity to look at the book again but when she saw the mirror it was as though she were looking at her own room from outside. The clock reflecting in the mirror read 13, and a thirteenth tone rang in her ears as the sound of a horn in a canyon.

Her eyes shot wide open and she quickly turned back around again, faced with a view she had never again anticipated seeing. Stretched out in the valley before her, underneath an ominous copper red cloud, she could see the white brick walls of the Labyrinth. "No!" She yelled, and turned to reface the mirror in an effort to escape but the vanity had vanished. In its place stood an old twisted, leafless tree. Perched on the lowest branch was a white barn owl staring directly at her.

It was him.

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from: nopowerover_me
date: Nov. 30th, 2005 11:29 am (UTC)
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"No," was all Sarah repeated, trying to fight between her emotions of shock and denial that combined and twisted deep within her. She must be dreaming. That's it .. that has to be it. There was no reason why she should be here -- she fought her way through the Underground kingdom and solved the Labyrinth fair and square. She defeated the Goblin King and she won Toby back! Even throughout the year the girl made sure to never utter the words 'I wish' in any sentence. She was tempted .. especially during all the frustating times she had with her little brother and step-mother .. but never those words would ever pass. She already learned her lesson that words breathe into life and one lesson was more than enough for her.

The only reminder she ever wanted of this place was the friends she made. Every now and then they made visits to her through her mirror which was just to talk and made sure she was doing okay. But beyond that? Nothing.

"This can't be happening," she mumbled, her hands lifting to cup the side of her head as her frustration grew which was, at the rate she was heading, was going to be replaced by anger. She wasn't going to be doing this all over again. "Jareth ... no," her eyes shoot up to the tree to glare toward the owl's gaze, "you can't do this to me! I won! I DEFEATED YOU!" Each word that passed through her lips only pushed her to grow even more angry and Jareth's silence was not helping the situation one bit. All she could do now was ball her hands into fists and hope that her glares will somehow make him drop dead by some magic power.

"Send me home," she demanded through clenched teeth, "send me home right now."

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from: t_storyteller
date: Nov. 30th, 2005 08:37 pm (UTC)
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As the girl's voice began to illustrate her frightened discontent with her newfound situation, Jareth began to step out from behind the tree, his eyes smoothly turning to meet her face while under the branch he ducked. He loved her fear. He loved how she always seemed to think that, regardless of the pits agaist her, she could always rise above them. No smile rest on the Goblin King's face while he stroked the brest feathers of the owl with one black gloved finger, listening to the entire soap box presentation that Sarah had to offer. It was, after all, rude to interrupt. At her demand his eyes snapped back upon her.

"Defeated me?" Jareth questioned as though he'd just been insulted, but instead he tilts his head back and laughs briefly. "How is it I'm standing here today if you defeated me, as you claim?" He departed the bird and began toward the girl in slow, casually timed steps. "You may have bested me a year ago to this date but make.. no.. mistake, Sarah, you did not defeat me. You overcame my obstacles. You showed confidence in the face of adversity. That, with a few of your little friends that I had not anticipated would assist you, you won the prize. You navigated the Labyrinth and the contest was complete, just as I promised it would be," his hands raised to either side of his body, "once again proving me as a man of my word." His feet carried him behind the girl and began to circle her slowly much in the same fashion a tiger sizes up its opponent, "As things progressed though, certain aspects of the challenge changed. Your power is compelling and your will unshakable. Had I expected that when you first called upon me to free you of the child, I wouldn't have let you leave. There would have been no deals made." When he was back in front of her again he stopped to look down at her eyes. "My parting offer still holds true. I've been more than generous to give you an entire year to think it over."

His lips pursed with nearly bored disappointment at the demand that followed. He turned around and began to approach the tree again, the light breeze licking at his thin cloak. "It wasn't me who brought you here, Sarah," he said, letting her name carry from his breath as an echo. He then turned sharply back toward her again and his voice became a mirror of his glare. "It was you. I simply provide the open doors. You're the one who seems to continually step through them."

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from: nopowerover_me
date: Dec. 1st, 2005 12:18 am (UTC)
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She huffed angrily to herself. It doesn't matter how many times Sarah saw the Goblin King. Even through all the times of her encounters with him she always found herself somewhat enthralled by Jareth while she looked upon him. Probably by one of his trickery spells, she thought. Watching him appear out from behind the tree she takes a single step back in surprise, holding the lump within her throat as he looked down upon as if she was some child. He doesn't even have to say any words to push her buttons and that's what she despised most about him. It was too easy for him to get underneath her skin. That was her weakness and he knew it.

"You wouldn't have let me leave?" Sarah smirked to him with a roll of her eyes. "If you knew who I was and what I was capable of you would never make the deal simply because you knew you would lose." While Jareth circled her she made sure to never have her back facing him and to never remove her eyes away. She was feeling a little intimidated by the way he was moving around her but her pride wouldn't allow her to show such. She will continue to hold her ground and she will never show that she was afraid by the infamous Goblin King.

As the situation was further explained to her, Sarah only became more furious. She didn't understand how he could stand there and say that she was the one responsible for her summoning here. He was lying to her only because he didn't want to send her back. "You just told me you're a man of your word," she pratically growled, "which means there should be no reason why I'm here. I can't believe that you're trying to lie to me and say you never brought me here when you did!" She was beginning to lose control of her emotions. Try as she did, her fear and frustration was easily beginning to echo upon her face from the chaos that was swirling inside her head. She couldn't go home. At least not until Jareth allows it. Dropping her limp hands to her sides she stares upon him through disbelief. All this ... it was only a game to him. "So this is what you meant when you said that you can be cruel."

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from: t_storyteller
date: Dec. 1st, 2005 07:56 am (UTC)
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"I'd have made no deals because you would've stayed," Jareth rephrased, "not .. because I would lose." He placed his hands behind his back, already growing impatient with the lips on this insolent girl. He'd almost forgotten what that venemous tongue was like. "Don't presume to know me, Sarah. I offered you a fighting chance because, how ironic, it's fair. I let you be assisted through my puzzle and I even assisted you myself."

He leaned his shoulder against the tree and tilted his head slightly. "I brought you back because, with as fair and oh - so - concerning as I was, I believe you owe me an answer," he said though was cut off by her final statement from which all resemblance of entertain melted from his face. He pushed himself off of the tree and began to approach her again. "Cruel?" He repeated in the form of a question. "My dear, dear Sarah, you've never seen me cruel." The sound of grinding stones could be heard down in the valley where the Labyrinth resides and, should one look, they'd see the very walls of the maze shifting and moving around, restructuring the already confusing array of halls and tunnels.

"It's not in my nature to try and make a liar out of you, though," Jareth continued. "I'd hate to think you had a black mark on your personality record because of me. Therefore," he walked forward, passing straight through the girl and toward the ledge of the path that led to the Labyrinth, "I'll forward the cruelty. The maze won't be the same as you walked it before, Sarah." He cast a grin over his shoulder toward her, his eyes half veiled by the whisping hair that caught on the breeze. "Just to be fair, though, last time you had to make it in. Well.."

Almost just as suddenly as a blink the outside world around Sarah was gone and she found herself in what appeared to be a throne room of the Goblin King's castle. The empty chair sat on a small incline in front of her and there were metal goblets and plates scattered anarchaically on the table. The entire room was cast aglow by the sunlight pouring in from the portal windows, but there was nobody around. No goblins or enemies as Sarah had before seen the castle.

"This time.. you can get out."

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from: nopowerover_me
date: Dec. 1st, 2005 09:09 am (UTC)
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"Answer?" Sarah questioned quietly to herself before the king began to approach her about the accusation she just made, forcing her to just look upon him in silence as he spoke. She wanted to speak but her mouth for some odd reason or another refused to move. The sound of grinding and moving stones, though? That was more than enough to capture her attention away from Jareth. She stood there, completely frozen in place, as wide eyes fell upon the reconstucting movement of the Labyrinth. All those twists and turns and walls ... all of it .. was changing right before her eyes. Every step that she so carefully noted inside her mind fell into just two words: completely useless.

Her mouth opened slowly as if she was about to say something but no words escaped. She was too shocked and too angry to even form anything right now. How could he do this?! Is he allowed to do that?! Trying to scream out something particularly the ones that made the sentence 'that's not fair' her eyes snapped back to him which was just in time to watch him walk right through her. "You can't do ..." she managed to breathe out, but her words were completely cut as the world around her suddenly snapped and changed as quick as lightning. Just in a blink she found herself somewhere that wasn't the Labyrinth's outskirts nor was it her room -- it was the castle. The throne room, to be exact. And she was alone.

"....."

The final words of the Goblin King echoed through the empty walls of the castle. As many times before, the only thing she felt she could do was stand there and feel completely bewildered. And just pissed off. "YOU CAN'T DO THIS TO ME!" she finally screamed out, grabbing one of the goblets from the table and throwing it across the room. Seething, she watched as the cup clang loudly against the stone surface and toppled its way to the floor. Now she had to fight her way out? It was no longer Toby's freedom she had to gain -- it was hers. And she didn't even know if she could ever find a way out of this place now that Jareth decided he was a sadist. She also didn't remember a written sequel that will tell her how to defeat him unlike her last adventure when she had the book to help her. Grabbing another goblet, her grip tightened around it in ready to throw it like the other but she stopped.

"Fine," she said, nodding her head to the cup and dropping it back as though she were accepting his challenge, knowing full well she had no choice. Both arms stretched out to either side of her body, long sleeves still covering her hands, she continued to motivate herself. "You want to play it this way?" she questioned the air. "Fine. I'll get out of here again. And I'll do it with my eyes closed." Her eyes wandered toward the only other exit other than the stairs that lead toward the place where she last faced her opponent. She began walking that way. "Again."

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