The Power Struggle
Author's note: Inspired by Jim Henson's Labyrinth!
1Sarah woke up in the morning and stretched until her bones creaked and popped. She smiled to herself; she’d had another dream last night. It wasn’t like her other dreams where she’d wake up and forget about most everything that happened in a matter of hours; no, Sarah knew she’d remember every detail just like it had been with the others.
It was the seventh dream Sarah had had in the past two months involving the Labyrinth. The first time, she’d shrugged it off as just another wonderful dream away from the whole realizing-you’ve-gone-to-school-in-your-underwear sort. The second time was odd and the third was just plain weird. The fourth had Sarah wholly freaked out but by the fifth she’d learn to relax and have fun with it and the sixth she and Sir Didymus had thrown a party in the midst of it. All of the dreams had been around the same vein but with definite differences every time. In all them, she sat in the messy goblin-infested room and watched as someone else ran the Labyrinth. A teenage girl, a young boy, a young mother, all in differing states of interest in the matter and another who refused to even try.
There had been something missing, Sarah realized now: she hadn’t seen hide nor hair nor puff of glitter from the Goblin King…until this last dream. It had been over ten years since she’d seen him but she could still picture him, down to the wild hair and nearly indecent tights. This time, she’d seen his face as he walked into the room just before the dream ended and she woke up back in her bed. Still, that icy look beneath furrowed brows sent chills down her spine; she’d seen him frustrated before but not full out angry.
She reflected back on the dream, reliving it bit by bit. First she had to orient herself to her surroundings, surprised to find herself yet again surrounded by rowdy goblins, a random chicken, and whatever else happened to wander in. The next thing Sarah had seen was a mass of orange fur as Ludo enveloped her in his giant hairy arms with a cheery “Sawah friend!” After pulling bits of hair from her mouth, she laughed and returned the hug. Hoggle had decided to make an appearance and sat next to her for the majority of the run while Sir Didymus had to leave early on to intercept the runner. This time, it had been a woman who was slowly sobering as the thirteen hours passed; her young daughter had a happy laugh when Sarah tickled her but otherwise was a sad, half-starved little girl. Sarah kept herself entertained devising new traps and obstacles to confuse the tipsy woman, still curious as to why she had even bothered. Time moved quite rapidly and soon she was sentencing and returning the woman back to her home. When she’d returned back to the main room, celebration of the Labyrinth’s successful run went on for what seemed like hours until finally they had roused the King. As much fun as running the dream-Labyrinth had been, Sarah’s smile melted when she thought of Jareth’s expression.
The drapes fluttered in the breeze and the bright sun of a beautiful May morning poured through the window. Resisting the urge to just settle back in bed, Sarah stretched again and sat up. The curtains fluttered again and Sarah glanced over, gasping in surprise.
Suddenly the room seemed so much colder, darker. Jareth stood in full Goblin King Regalia, arms crossed and piercing mismatched eyes honed on Sarah’s.
“Stay on your side, Sarah.”
Subconsciously pulling the covers closer and stealing herself, Sarah stammered, “What? J-Jareth, what are you doing here?”
“Sarah,” he repeated, obviously agitated all the more, “Don’t defy me. Stay on your side. I will not warn you again.”
Too astounded and full of questions to formulate a response, Sarah said nothing as the curtains fluttered in front of the Goblin King and he disappeared.