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To Court a Queen

Chapter Text

October 31, 1989

Jareth had returned the girls to the aboveground and reordered time so they wouldn't be missed. After a goodbye that felt a little too final for Sarah's liking, she returned home alone. Her friends had encouraged her to call for Jareth. They said it was obvious he cared deeply for her and that she should at least get to know him and give him a shot.

So Sarah asked the 5 Goblins to leave for the night and sat at her vanity and sighed. Noticing she was still wearing the medallion Jareth had given her, she took it off and studied it. She could still feel the warmth of the Labyrinth's magic. Smiling, she thought back on all that had happened; the party, dancing with Jareth again, returning to the Labyrinth, their silly game of questions, Jareth giving her Luna, riding Luna with him, their rescue of Beckie and Whit, confronting Oogie Boogie, and his goodbye. He had seemed so sad when he whispered, "Goodbye my Precious Sarah."

Sarah stared at her reflection in the mirror. "But what no one knew..." Unconsciously her finger traced her lips as she remembered their brief kiss when Jareth told her they had much to discuss in private. Making up her mind, she closed her eyes and made her wish. "I wish to see the Goblin King right now."

The window opened and in flew a white barn owl. When Sarah opened her eyes, there stood Jareth with a huge grin on his face. "Miss me already Sarah?" He crossed his arms over his chest and leaned against the wall.

Sarah smiled and looked him over. He was dressed similar to the costume Sarah had made, but his shirt was black and open at the top revealing a good portion of his chest and the medallion that always hung around his neck. Sarah placed the medallion he had given her on the desk and stood. "And what if I did miss you? Would that be a bad thing?"

Jareth chuckled. "No Precious, only bad if you decided to be stubborn and not call for me even if you missed me. While I hoped you wouldn't go back to ignoring me, I never dreamed you'd call for me so soon."

Sarah nodded. "I wasn't sure I should call for you, but well..." She stepped towards him. "You were nothing but nice to me and you kept your word and returned us home." Taking another step, she gazed into his eyes. "Plus I didn't feel comfortable with the way we parted earlier. Your goodbye felt a little too final, like you were never going to see me again."

Jareth lowered his gaze, breaking eye contact. "I was prepared for the worst, Precious." He sighed. "You seemed a little too anxious to get home, like another minute with me was a curse. After what happened at Oogie Boogie's, you seemed to withdraw from me."

Sarah moved so she was directly in front of the King. "Sorry. I didn't mean to make you feel like I didn't want anything to do with you. Yes, part of me still worried you would try and find a way to keep me in the Underground, but mainly I was doing a lot of thinking. A lot happened tonight." She reached out and touched his cheek. "And you're right, we have a lot to discuss. I have questions that only you can answer."

He leaned his head towards her hand, savoring her touch. "I will happily answer any question you ask."

"I want the complete honest truth Jareth, not a partial answer or quick subject changes. That is the reason you owe me a favor now." She smirked.

Smiling, he shook his head. "I had hoped you forgot about that."

"Why? Because you don't like owing me favors or because I beat you at your own game again?" she asked as she pulled her hand away.

"The latter dear. I would happily grant any request you make of me even if the favor is not owed or returned," Jareth replied.

Sarah stepped away and went and sat on her bed. "Alright, first question. What do you want from me?"

Jareth laughed. "Straight to the point I see." He moved from his place against the wall to kneel in front of her. Taking both of her hands in his he stared into her eyes. "What I want is you, dear Sarah. I want you to stay with me, be my wife and Queen, help me rule my Kingdom. I want to go to bed with you each night and wake to your beautiful face each day. I want to fight and argue with you and makeup once one or both of us stops being stubborn. I want to spend my life with you."

"Why? I'm nothing special; just a normal, mortal girl. You'll watch me grow old. So, why me?"

"Now you insult me." Jareth let go of her hands and stood. "Do you honestly think a normal girl could defeat my Labyrinth or capture my heart the way you have. No Sarah, you are quite extraordinary. I knew the minute you decided to try and save your brother that you were special," Jareth said as he paced in front of her.

"Are you trying to tell me it was love at first sight?" Sarah asked.

"No, it was not." He glared at her. "I found your belief in magic fascinating and your dreams of adventure made me want to fulfill your desires. I enjoyed watching you in the park for quite some time before I made sure a certain red book made its way into your possession."

"The book?" Sarah stared at the wall. "Wait, you said the story was true. What no one knew and all that."

"It is true. No one, myself included, knew that I had fallen in love with the girl. At first I wanted to keep you as a pet. Something to play with and tease." He stopped seeing her look of disgust. "That changed soon after you entered the Labyrinth. The more you fought me the more I realized you could never be a pet. Not to me or any man. You're too strong and independent. When I gave Hoggle that peach, I knew you were the one to become my Queen. No one else dared challenge me the way you did at every turn and the more you did, the deeper in love I fell. You were what was missing from my life." He sighed and sat in the chair by her vanity. "Sarah you've seen that as King I'm often threatening and strict with my subjects. I need someone to help me balance the Kingdom. In order to keep my Kingdom as long as I have, I've made enemies. No one visits my Kingdom or me due to the Goblins and well, my reputation. I've been alone longer than I want to think about." He hung his head and stared at the floor. "I told you before giving orders is all I'm really good at. I'm jealous of your friends and the Goblins. Without trying, they befriended you and earned both your love and trust. Despite my best efforts, you refused me and left me alone again."

Sarah watched and listened to the King's tale and she started to understand. He just wanted someone to love him, to be a friend and companion. Without thinking, she stood and walked over to him. Wrapping her arms around him, she held him tight. "You're not alone anymore."

Jareth wrapped his arms around her waist. "You'll stay with me Precious?"

"I didn't agree to live with you, but I'm willing to consider it." She ran her fingers through his wild blonde hair. "I hardly know anything about you Jareth. I know you said you're not good at these things, but you have to take it slow. While running off sounds very tempting there's a lot to consider. My family and friends here, my life and plans for my life. Also, my short life compared to yours."

"Oh Sarah," he pulled her closer to him. "With a simple potion you would become like me and I would never deny you visiting your friends and family."

She smiled and continued playing with his hair. "Still, it's not a decision I can make in one night. I need time Jareth. I still have to finish high school. I'm not promising anything, but I'm willing to give you a chance. Let's take it slow. Start with friendship and see where it goes. You can visit me anytime as long as you give me my privacy and space when needed." She took his face in her hands and made him look at her. "Is that acceptable?"

"Friends with a potential for more?"

"Correct."

Jareth smiled. "Alright Sarah."

She smiled and hugged him "Just don't overdo it with visits and for now stay out of sight. I'm not sure how my parents would react to you."

"Understood Precious." He let her go and stood. He picked up her medallion and placed it around her neck. "Please don't take this off. It will keep you safe and if you need me, all you have to do is call my name."

Sarah held it in her hand. "Does it always feel warm?"

"Mostly. Pray the Labyrinth is never pissed at you," Jareth replied.

Sarah chuckled. "Still hard to believe the Labyrinth is alive." She sat back on her bed. "I'll need a way to explain it to my parents."

"Just tell them the truth, it was a gift from a friend." Jareth smirked.

Sarah considered it. "Hopefully they don't ask too many questions." She played with a strand of her hair. "If Irene finds out it’s from a boy, she'll get all worked up about me dating."

"Boy?" Jareth asked with raised eyebrow.

"Well I can't say a magical King who's very old compared to me gave it to me for protection."

Nodding, he sat back down. "True, though I wish I didn't have to be a secret. Perhaps on occasion I can visit like a normal boy would." Chuckling at Sarah's look he grinned. "Don't worry I would wear a glamour so they would see me as a human male closer to your age."

"You can do that?"

"I can do many things dearest," he smirked. "I have a question for you Sarah."

"What is it?"

"As we agreed to go slow and start as friends, what am I allowed to do?" Seeing her confusion, he continued. "So that I don't overstep boundaries, may I hug or kiss you?"

"Hugs are fine," Sarah said nervously.

"And kisses?" Jareth smirked at the vast range of emotions that washed over her face. It was clear his kiss had affected her more than she would admit. Before she could answer he said, "For now, a kiss on your cheek or forehead is as far as I'll go, unless you wish for more." He gave her a seductive grin and leaned back in the chair. "So what do friends do exactly?"

"You've never had a friend?" Sarah asked. He shook his head. "Not even when you were small?"

"Sarah, in my life there were 2 types of people. Those higher ranking than myself who demanded I obey them and those of lower rank that must obey me."

"No one of equal rank?"

"None that actually bothered to give me any of their time," Jareth answered.

"No wonder you were lonely." Sarah sat back and grabbed her pillow. Leaning against the headboard, she hugged her pillow. "I kind of felt like that at one time. My mother never really had time for me when I was little and daddy was busy at the law firm. Then my mother left us. She decided being a wife and mother put a strain on her precious acting career. Then daddy married Irene and the attention he gave me was split in half. Once Toby was born it was almost nonexistent. I hated Toby because I thought my dad loved him so much that he forgot about me."

"Which is why you spent all your time in the park."

Sarah nodded. "I felt unwanted and unloved. I thought if I could become an actress like my mother then I'd be loved like she is, but I suck as an actress."

"Nonsense," Jareth argued. "I loved watching you act out your plays. I often wondered what they were and what happened in the rest of the story. I realized you were only acting out the roles of the heroines, but you became the characters."

Sarah smiled. "I'm glad someone liked my acting. My drama teacher said I was a disgrace and should never reveal that Linda Williams is my mother."

"Fool. I should drop that teacher into the bog," Jareth sneered.

Sarah chuckled. "Is that your solution to everything?"

"No. Sometimes I simply kick them." He smirked then looked around her room. "Do you still have those books that you used to act out?"

Nodding, Sarah placed her pillow down and stood. She walked to her closet and pulled out a box filled with books. "I couldn't bring myself to get rid of them."

Jareth looked through the box. The books, while a bit worn, were in good condition. "I don't see the little red book I gave you."

Sarah opened the drawer of her desk. "Because its here." She took the book out and ran her hand over the cover. "I used to read it over and over. I never imagined I would live it."

Jareth nodded and placed the box of books on the ground and stood beside Sarah. "I've given versions of this to hundreds of girls over the years. The story was always the same, that is until it touched your hands." He took the book from her and opened it, flipping through slowly. "Normally the book changes to fit the girl. A wicked stepmother, a drunken father, abusive uncle. Something to help the child relate. Never before did it say I fell in love with the girl." He gave her a soft smile and touched her cheek. "I thought it was accommodating your dreams, but perhaps it was mine."

Sarah placed her hand over his. "Maybe it was both. We were both lonely and wanting something that was missing. What about the end? Your final words to me aren't in there."

Jareth laughed. "I've never read your version of this, so how could I know my lines?" He smiled revealing his pointed teeth. "What I said was from my heart, words meant just for you, my champion." Setting the book down, he embraced her. "Sarah."

He started to say more, but the sound of a door opening and closing interrupted him. "Sarah, we're home! Are you here?" her father called from downstairs.

"Damn, they're home," Sarah muttered.

Jareth chuckled. "I should go."

Sarah hugged him tight. "You'll be back though, right?"

"Of course Precious. All you have to do is call for me," Jareth said as he rested his head on top of hers.

"So, I'll see you tomorrow?"

He smiled. "If that is your wish my dear." He pulled away and kissed her forehead. "Goodnight Sarah." He turned into an owl and flew out the open window.

Sarah raced to the window and watched him fly away. "Goodnight Jareth," she whispered.

Chapter Text

After their long talk on Halloween, Jareth had visited every night after dinner. Sarah made sure the Goblins were fed and sent them back to the castle telling them she needed alone time. Once they were gone and she was sure her parents wouldn't question her disappearing upstairs, she would say goodnight and lock herself in her room. Sarah would open the window, sit on her bed and call for Jareth. In a matter of seconds, he would arrive with a grin on his face. Each night, they would sit and talk quietly until Sarah became tired or the hour became so late that she had to retire or never make it to school the next morning. At the end of their time together, Jareth would kiss her forehead, tell her goodnight and fly away.

After a few weeks of this, Sarah expected it to be the routine every night, but Jareth had other plans when he arrived that night.

"Hello Precious." He grinned.

Sarah smiled. At first it annoyed her to be called Precious, but now she found it sweet. It made her feel special. "Hey."

"Come with me," Jareth said as he held out his hand to her.

"What? Now?"

"I'll have you home before anyone can miss you," he assured her.

"Where are we going?" Sarah asked as she stood.

"The castle," he grinned.

Hesitantly, Sarah took his hand and he walked her to the window. Before her, she saw Jareth's throne room and when she looked behind her, her bedroom had vanished. Turning back to Jareth, Sarah shook her head. "I'll never get used to that."

"Sure you will. Perhaps one day you'll be able to do it by yourself," Jareth smirked.

Sarah looked around the room. There were Goblins and chickens everywhere, most of them passed out. The few that were awake were drunk and grinned at her. “Hi Lady!” One Goblin called to her as he stumbled over to her.

“Hi there.” She smiled at him.

“Lady wants drink?” He offered the empty cup in his hand.

“No thank you. I appreciate the offer though.” She replied and the Goblin shrugged and stumbled away.

“Your patience with Goblins never ceases to amaze me Sarah.” Jareth chuckled as he took her arm and slowly led her out of the room, carefully stepping over Goblins.

“Patience and kindness goes a long way with them.” Sarah stated. “Cam told me that most Fae find Goblins ugly and are cruel to them. He and Flower said you take really good care of them and that’s why they love you.”

“Love me? The Goblins actually said they love me?” Jareth stopped walking to stare at Sarah.

“Yes they did. See I told you they would miss their King if anything happened to you.” She grinned. “So where are we going?” Sarah asked as she looked around the unfamiliar halls.

“You’ll see Precious.” Jareth smirked and continued down the hall. Soon they were outside and walking down a small path. When they reached the stables, Jareth let go of Sarah’s arm. “There’s someone here, other than myself that missed you.” He whistled a white mare came galloping from her stall.

“Luna!” Sarah exclaimed as the horse ran over to her. Luna shook her head and stomped the ground. “I’m sorry. I should have come to see you sooner.”

“See, I told you our Champion hadn’t forgotten you.” Jareth said as he rubbed Luna’s neck.

Luna whinnied at the King and nudged Sarah with her nose. Sarah laughed and rubbed her. “How could I forget a beauty like you?”

“How about going for a ride Sarah?” Jareth questioned with a smile.

“Uh…well I’m not…that is..”

Jareth held up his hand to stop her rambling. “Relax Sarah.” He threw a crystal up and suddenly they both were in riding gear. “I know you’re not a skilled rider, yet, so I shall ride with you until you feel comfortable.”

Sarah nodded. “Alright.”

Leading Luna back to her stall, Jareth showed Sarah how to put on the saddle and bridle before helping her mount the horse. After he climbed up behind her he handed her the reins and instructed her on what to do and how to direct Luna. Soon they were trotting through the woods. Jareth’s arms were loosely wrapped around Sarah’s waist as he let her direct Luna.

When they came to a small stream, Luna stopped and stomped her front hoof. “What is it?” Sarah asked in a concerned tone.

“I believe she wishes to take a break.” Jareth stated before he gracefully dismounted and then helped Sarah down. Removing the bridle, he patted Luna. “Relax for a while.” She nodded and went to the stream for a drink.

Sarah looked around. “I didn’t realize just how beautiful it is here.”

Jareth stood behind her. “Nothing here is what it seems upon first glance.”

Turning around to face him, Sarah smiled. “Does that include the King?”

“Most definitely. The King of these lands is the most complex being to be found for hundreds of miles.” He replied as he leaned against a tree, smiling.

“Hmmm, no I don’t think so.” She rubbed her chin as if in deep thought. “I think he’s quite easy to understand once you can see past his mask.”

“Oh?” He raised an eyebrow. “And just what do you believe lies under his mask?”

“A simple man, just wanting companionship.”

“Simple?”

“Okay, so a very powerful, magical man that wants companionship.” Sarah chuckled.

“Oh Sarah if only I could be as carefree and happy as I am when I’m with you all the time.” Jareth took her hands in his. “I find myself smiling for no reason at all lately. What have you done to me Precious?”

She gave his hands a gentle squeeze and chuckled. “I have done nothing. You’re just learning that interacting with others isn’t a bad thing.”

“I beg to differ on that one. I’ve interacted with others numerous times. It’s always boring and usually gives me a terrible headache, but talking with you…” He grinned. “I find it so easy and enjoyable.” He lifted her hands to his mouth and kissed them. “After an enjoyable evening I feel like I take on the entire Court with ease.”

“I take it you have to deal with them soon?” Jareth had told her briefly of the High Court and she had heard about other members of the court from the Goblins.

“Sadly yes.” He sighed. “I have a mandatory meeting tomorrow, which means I may not be able to visit with you. If you call and I am unable to get away I shall send word by Goblin.”

Nodding, Sarah pulled her hands from his. “Well, let’s not waste what time we have. What shall we do?”

“Are you hungry?” Jareth asked as he walked over to an open area.

“I could use a snack, but mostly I’m thirsty.” Sarah replied.

“Then allow me to remedy that.” Summoning a crystal, he threw it at the ground. After the dust cleared, there was a large blanket spread out with bowls of food, bottles of drinks, and 2 glasses in the center. “After you my Lady.” Jareth said as he bowed to her.

Sarah chuckled and sat on the blanket and looked over the spread of food. There were grapes, strawberries, peaches, cubes of cheese, and crackers. She eyed the bottles of liquid suspiciously. “Do I even want to know what’s in the bottles?”

Jareth sat down beside her. “Relax Precious. Only one bottle is alcohol.” He grabbed one bottle and set it by his leg and then grabbed a second one, opened it, poured the clear contents into a glass, and held it out to Sarah.

Cautiously she took the glass and took a sip. “Grape juice?”

“That’s right Sarah.” He smiled. “There’s also pear and peach juice if you prefer one of those.”

“Grape is fine.” She took another sip. “Thank you Jareth.”

“You’re very welcome Sarah.”

Sarah snacked on the cheese and crackers and Jareth poured himself a glass of liquid from the bottle he had placed by his leg. “What is that?” Sarah asked.

“Goblin Ale. Care to try it?” He offered her his glass. She took it from him and took a small sip and handed the glass back. After swallowing the liquid, she coughed and took a large gulp of her juice. Jareth chuckled. “It’s an acquired taste.”

“One I think I’m better off not acquiring.” Sarah replied.

“Perhaps.” He downed the rest of his glass and poured himself another glass.

Sarah sipped her juice and when her glass was empty Jareth graciously refilled it for her. She watched him silently as she snacked on the fruit for a while. “Jareth.”

“Yes Sarah?”

“What are they like?” Sarah asked. When he raised an eyebrow in confusion she added, “The others of your kind. The members of the Court.”

“Well my kind are vain, arrogant, power hungry creatures with little love for any but themselves.” Jareth answered. “The other members of the Court aren’t much better. The Elves prefer to stay in their trees. The Trolls would sooner kill you than look at you. Pixies are the worst of the lot. They smile and act friendly, but stab you the minute you turn your back.” He downed his second glass and poured a third. “The whole court is corrupt and greedy. The High Queen sees it all and looks the other way, which makes her as bad as the rest.”

“What of the High King? Or is there one?”

“There is. Haven’t seen King Talonas in years. His health isn’t the best and he stays in his palace. His wife is quite content ruling in his stead.” Jareth downed the third glass and emptied what little remained of the bottle into his glass.

“Is there any race you do get along with?”

“I suppose the Dwarves are decent. They mostly stay in their mines and they do make excellent weapons. The Goblins of course, but if I couldn’t stand them I’d have no right to be their King.” Jareth replied before finishing the last of the Goblin Ale. He sat the bottle and his glass off to the side and then stretched his legs out.

Seeing him cover his face to hide his yawn, Sarah smiled. “Tired, oh mighty King?” She teased.

He chuckled. “A little. I had to do double the work today as I shall be at Court all day tomorrow. I had just finished the last form when you called for me.”

“Why didn’t you tell me? We could have just stayed in my room or at the castle. Now you’re going to be exhausted.” She moved so she was behind him. “Here lay back.” She gently tugged on his shoulders until he laid back, his head resting on her lap. Softly she began to massage his temples. “You rest and relax for a bit.”

Jareth closed his eyes and grinned from pointed ear to pointed ear. “Now, now Precious. You’re going to spoil me if you keep this up.”

“Nothing wrong with that. You always do things for me, so now it’s my turn.” She smiled.

“I am but your humble slave and putty in your hands at the moment.” He reached up and took her right hand in his and brought it to his lips. He placed a gentle kiss on it before releasing it. “Your hands are extremely soft and caring my Sarah.”

Sarah continued massaging his temples and then ran her fingers through his hair and massaged his scalp. Hearing a quiet moan come from Jareth, she chuckled. “Feel nice your majesty?”

“Wonderful.” He sighed with contentment. “Though I do have to warn you, for your own safety do not touch my ears. They are extremely sensitive and if you were to give them similar treatment I may not be able to control myself.”

“Touching your ears can make you violent?” Sarah asked with wide eyes as her hands stopped moving.

Jareth opened his eyes to look up at her. “Oh no, well not in the way you’re thinking at least.” He smirked. “But I don’t think you’d appreciate me pushing you back and ravishing you here in the grass.” Seeing her turn her now bright red face, he laughed lightly. “Though the thought is very tempting.”

“Jareth!” she scolded.

“I jest, love.” He reached up and touched her face gently, turning her head to make her look at him once more. “I wouldn’t do anything like that without your permission. I was serious about my warning though. My ears are sensitive and such tender caresses may cause me to lose my senses and do something I would regret later.”

She nodded. “Got it. No touching your ears.”

They stared at each other in silence for a long time before Jareth closed his eyes and gave a heavy sigh as he nestled his head further onto Sarah’s lap. “I could lay here forever.”

“You might be able to, but I’d have to get up eventually.” Sarah responded. “Plus wouldn’t you need to eat eventually?”

He reached over and grabbed a bunch of grapes. He pulled a couple from the bunch and ate them then grinned. “I have food, I have drink, and a I have very beautiful and comfortable pillow. What more do I need?”

Taking the grapes from him, she pulled off a few and ate them as she shook her head smiling at him. “I half expected you to ask me to feed these to you.”

Jareth stared up at her and smirked. He pulled a grape from the bunch still in her hand and held it up to her mouth. “Never would I ask you to do any such task.” Sarah accepted the grape from his hand and he grabbed a second and offered it to her. “I would ask if you’d like me to feed them to you Precious.” He gave her a gentle smile as she took the second grape. “Of course if you decided you wanted to feed me, I wouldn’t complain or object. I humbly accept any doting you choose to bestow upon me.”

He offered her a third grape, which she took before pulling one from the bunch. She held it in front of his mouth and gazed into his eyes as he took it from her hand, his lips lightly brushing against her fingers. “I bet you have girls do this for you all the time.” She said as she turned her head, blushing slightly.

“You’re the first and I’d be very happy to have you be the only one as well.” He gave her a gentle smile and closed his eyes again. “Feels nice to just relax like this. No Goblins being noisy, no runners trying to beat my Labyrinth, no paperwork, and no Court arguing over ridiculous things.”

Sarah placed the rest of the grapes back in the bowl and brushed Jareth’s hair from his face. “You really dislike the Court that much?”

“Dislike doesn’t begin to describe it.” He said with a heavy sigh. “I haven’t the faintest idea why the High Queen insists on these meetings. Nothing gets accomplished.”

Sarah started massaging his shoulders softly. “How does the court even function then?”

“Function?” He laughed. “It doesn’t. The High Queen gets what she wants from just about everyone and the rest bicker amongst themselves.”

“So why are you a part of it?” Sarah inquired. “Seems like its nothing but a headache for you and your Kingdom is already cut off from it from what I’ve been told. Other than these meetings do you really have any interaction with them?”

Jareth chuckled. “Everyone has their place Sarah. I was never meant to be Goblin King. I was supposed to be a member of the Court like the rest of my family. When I decided to run the Labyrinth and take the throne of this Kingdom, the High Queen was furious. I agreed to remain a member of the court to appease her and prevent a war.”

“Would she really attack you?”

“Perhaps. If she had done so before she may have succeeded, but now… Well I may not be loved at Court, but I am respected and feared. The High Queen knows her place as well as the rest of us do.” Jareth explained.

“Her place…” Sarah mumbled. “What place do humans have here?”

“The pathetic humans here know their place well. If they don’t they soon learn it. The only thing they’re good for is as slaves or for breeding.”

No sooner had the words left his mouth, than Sarah was up on her feet; Jareth’s head falling from her lap and colliding with the ground. “I want to go home.”

“Ow.” Jareth rubbed his head. “Precious what’s….” He stopped as he realized what he had said. “Sarah, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean you. I …”

“I want to go home Jareth. Take me home now.” Sarah demanded.

He stood and approached her. “Sarah, please…”

“No, I’ve heard enough.” She cut him off.

Jareth sighed. “Give me your hand.” Reluctantly she did and in an instant they were back in her room, dressed as they had been before they left. She released Jareth’s hand and turned her back on him. “Sarah, what I said…” He started to reach for her but decided against it. He stared at her back in silence.

“I think you should go Goblin King.” She said coldly.

“Very well Sarah. Goodnight.” He turned and flew away, slamming the window shut behind him.

Sarah turned to see the empty place where he had been standing. Throwing herself on the bed, she cried herself to sleep.

Chapter Text

Jareth returned to the castle beyond the Goblin City in the foulest mood he had been in since Sarah had beaten the Labyrinth. The moment he landed he summoned a crystal and threw it against the wall, shattering it. All of the Goblins jumped and hurried to find a hiding place. Jareth screamed as he threw a chair across the room. “I was doing so well!” He flopped onto his throne. “Why did I have to say something so stupid?” He summoned a bottle of Goblin ale and took a large swig from it. “Now she probably hates me. Gods I’m so stupid!” He downed the rest of the bottle, threw it against the wall, and buried his head in his hands.

Sarah’s Goblins had been in the throne room when the King returned. “We should checks on Lady.” Cam whispered. The other four nodded and they hurried to Sarah’s. They found their Lady on her bed, crying her eyes out. Unsure of what to do, the Goblins climbed onto the bed with her and hugged her gently. Not long after that her sobs quieted and she soon fell asleep.

The next morning, Sarah stayed home from school. She told her parents she was feeling ill, which wasn’t far from the truth with how little sleep she had gotten the night before. After they both left for work, Irene taking Toby with her to drop him off at daycare, Sarah made her way downstairs and made herself comfortable on the couch.
She wasn’t sure what to think or believe. Jareth had gone out of his way to try and prove to her that he saw her as an equal. She also knew that Fae couldn’t lie; a fact that made his words sting even more. Even if he saw her differently than other humans, he still considered them to be good for nothing but slaves and breeders. Was that how Jareth saw her friends and family too?

As she sat in deep thought, Cam climbed up on the couch and sat on her lap. “Lady ok?”

Sarah hugged the little Goblin. “I honestly don’t know Cam.”

“Anything we cans do to helps?” He asked.

“Afraid not. This is something Jareth and I have to work out.” She sighed.

“Wants me to gets Kingy or takes a letter to him?” Cam asked with a grin.

“Not at the moment.” Sarah gave him a soft smile. She knew he was trying his best to help. “Besides Jareth has a meeting at the High Court today.”

Cam hung his head. “Kingy says he no go today. Had me takes letter to big Queenie. She no happy withs Kingy’s letter. She throws things. I leaves before she throws things at me.”

“The High Queen throws things at you?” Sarah asked wide eyed, she couldn’t believe it.

Cam nodded. “Big Queenie no likes gobbies. Not many peoples do likes us.”

Sarah hugged him tightly. “Well I do. I love all five of you and I like all the Goblins I’ve had a chance to meet.”

“I loves Lady too!” The little Goblin exclaimed happily.

“Speaking of Goblins, where are the others?” Sarah inquired as she looked around.

“With Kingy. I tells them to stay in case Kingy needs help. He not very happys right now. He drinks lots of ale and throws things, but not at us.” Cam explained.

“Guess he’s pissed at me.” Sarah sighed.

Cam shrugged. “Kingy says he stupids and blames himself.”

Sarah stood and placed Cam on the couch. “I don’t know what to do Cam.” She paced back and forth. “Are things really so different in the Underground?”

“How so Lady?” Cam sat on the pillow and watched her walk back and forth.

“I know you said not many like Goblins outside of Jareth’s Kingdom, but what about humans?”

Cam rubbed his little chin. “I no sees humans other than in Labyrinth. Lady last one to visits.”

“So there are no humans?”

“None I sees, but I only goes places to do things for Kingy. I no gets to explore a lot.” Cam explained.

Before Sarah could repond, she was tackled by the other four of her Goblins. “Lady! Lady!” Three of them cried.

“Woah, woah. What’s wrong?” she asked as she knelt to comfort the panicked Goblins.

“Kingy in troubles with big Queenie!” Patch shouted.

“She sends big scary men to takes Kingy away.” Sobbed Flower.

“WHAT?!” Sarah was so shocked she fell back against the couch, her butt hitting the floor rather hard.

“They says Kingy has to be at big Queenie’s meeting.” Dusty stated.

“Is he going to be punished?” Sarah questioned.

“Big Queenie probably yells, but she no hurts Kingy.” Cam assured her as he leaned over her head to look down at her. “Kingy too strong.”

“Because of the Labyrinth’s magic?”

Cam nodded. “Labyrinth protects us all. Even Lady.” He grinned.

“Kingy be in even badder moods when he gets home though.” Flower added.

Sarah rubbed her head. “This is all my fault. It’s because of me that he decided to skip the meeting.”

Cam hopped down from the couch and hugged Sarah. “It ok Lady. Kingy be okays.”

The other four came over and hugged her as well. “Cam right Lady. Kingy be backs to normal soons.” Patch assured her.

“I hope you’re right.” Sarah sighed and then said something she had refused to say for almost 3 years. She had only allowed herself to say in it in an emergency situation when she had returned to the Underground to rescue her friends. “I wish there was something I could do to help Jareth.”

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Jareth was sitting at the High Queen’s table, massaging his temples in an attempt to ease the pain of his already throbbing head. The shouts and cries of the Troll and Dwarf Kings did little to help his head. He had hoped to avoid the meeting, especially after the 13 bottles of Goblin ale the night before, but the High Queen wouldn’t hear of it. She even sent her personal guards to retrieve him.

Reluctantly, Jareth let the guards escort him to the Court’s usually meeting location. They were already arguing when he arrived and no one bothered to inform the tardy Goblin King what the issue was. Probably she same old crap as always, Jareth assumed. He was just about to yell at them to shut the fool mouths when he heard it. Someone made a wish. It was a most unexpected wish and not one that normally would summon the Goblin King as no child was being wished away, but Jareth knew exactly why he was able to hear this wish. The voice making the wish was one he knew well and the wish had been intended for him and him alone. “I wish there was something I could do to help Jareth.” The voice echoed in his mind and to him it was the sweetest sound he had ever heard.

He amazingly managed to keep the smile from his face as he stood. The sound of his chair falling back startled the others into silence. “I’ve been summoned by a wisher.” He tried his best to sound unhappy about it, but in truth he was so thrilled he wanted to dance.

“Ignore it.” The High Queen said sternly.

“You know I cannot Majesty. The rules of the Labyrinth are quite clear and must be obeyed. When a wisher calls, the King must answer.” Jareth couldn’t help but smirk.

“Very well,” She grumbled. “But return as soon as you’ve dealt with the wisher.”

Jareth bowed. “Of course.” Before she could reply he was back at the castle beyond the Goblin City. The moment he arrived in the throne room, the Goblin King shouted, “YES!” He twirled and danced around his throne, laughing merrily. The Goblins stared at their King as if he had gone mad. “Oh, you dear, sweet, amazing, precious thing!” He was grinning from ear to ear as he sat on his throne and debated going to her. Technically he had already granted her wish. She had given him a way to escape the court and since the wish was granted he didn’t truly have to go to her. Though she had wished to help him, how would she react to him suddenly appearing?

Sighing, he stood and headed for his study. “One of you fetch the Dwarf that tends to the gardens.” He said calmly as he walked by the Goblins. Jareth didn’t wait for a reply. He continued down the hall. He knew what he had to do, and he was dreading it.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

A couple hours later, Sarah and the Goblins were up in her room listening to music and playing Battle for the Universe. It had taken a lot of time and patience, but she managed to get the Goblins to understand the basics of the game and now they could play without much instruction from Sarah. She was quite proud of teaching them how to play the many board games they had managed to learn. Chess was still a little beyond their understanding, though Cam was close to understanding it. Sarah rolled the dice and took her turn. “Alright Flower, it’s your turn.” She handed the dice to her.

As Flower started to roll the dice, a voice came from the vanity, startling the Goblins. “Sarah.” Hearing the voice the Goblins dove off the bed and hid under it.

Sarah looked over to see a familiar face in the mirror. “Oh, hi Hoggle!” She said happily. The Goblins slowly peeked out from under the bed.

“Is it alright to come to you right now?” Hoggle asked nervously.

Nodding, Sarah smiled. “Sure, it’s just me and the Goblins at the moment.”

Hoggle nodded and started making his way through the mirror. Sarah rushed over to give him a hand. “Thanks Sarah.” He said quietly once he was all the way through.

“So what brings you here Hoggle, not that I’m not happy to see you. It’s just strange for you to come here without me asking you to.” Sarah grinned as she sat back on the bed with the Goblins.

“I was asked to bring you something.” Hoggle replied as he pulled a large envelope from his pocket. “He must have done something horrible with the way he was acting.”

Sarah knew exactly who he was. Jareth had given the letter to Hoggle. “Is he alright?”

“You tell me.” Hoggle shrugged. “He called for me and when I got to his study, the King had his back to me. He asked very politely if I would please deliver this letter to you. I even asked him why me instead of one of his Goblins.”

“What did he say?”

“That it would mean more to you if I was the one to bring it to ya.” Hoggle handed the letter to Sarah.

Taking the letter, Sarah stared at it for a moment. Why would it mean more from Hoggle? She thought on that as she slowly opened the envelope and pulled out the letter.

Sarah,
I don’t know how to begin to tell you how sorry I am. There are a thousand excuses I could give for my behavior, but you deserve more than excuses. After all, what’s said is said. I cannot take those words back. I can however explain things to help you better understand what lead me to say such a thing. My contact with humans is greater than that of most Fae, but I usually see the worst of the lot. Most humans that wish away a baby don’t deserve the gift of a child. If they do run my Labyrinth they usually take my offer to give up and forget the baby. Those that don’t and continue on and fail the challenge are sold as slaves, which for most is not an adequate punishment for them as far as I’m concerned. Most of those children were sick, abused, and some were even near death. I’ve seen exactly how cruel humans can be. Occasionally an older sibling wishes the younger away and usually they refuse to run the Labyrinth and they and the parents completely forget the child was ever there. A few have made the wish wanting me to save the baby from their vile parent and if I can I save all the children, including the wiser. The wished away children are given to deserving Fae that raise them as their own. My kind has a hard time conceiving, so adopting is the best option for those wanting to have children.
I know you were an exception to the usual wishers I get. I also understand that you probably took my comment to mean all humans, not just the horrible ones I’ve dealt with and sold to others as slaves. I cannot apologize enough. I hope you understand my position a little better now and can find it in your heart to forgive me at some point.
Also I wanted to thank you. I heard your wish today, even if you said it without meaning to. I was able to grant your wish instantly. By the laws of my Kingdom, when a wish is made to myself or the Goblins, I must answer the wisher’s call. Your wish was self-granting. By calling me away from what I was doing, which was rather unpleasant, you helped me tremendously. I’ll have to return soon unless you actually call for me, but please understand that I am not asking you to do so Precious. Don’t feel that you have to call for me to keep me away from the Court for a little longer. I know what I said hurt and upset you greatly and if you do not wish to see me right now I completely understand. If you do wish to talk, simply call and I will be there.
-J

Sarah read the letter twice and took a deep breath. She smiled slightly at the fact that her unintentional wish had called Jareth away from the Court. Looking around, she saw the Goblins and Hoggle watching her silently. “Looks like I saved him from the High Queen’s wrath after all.” She smiled. Turning to Hoggle, she got off the bed and knelt beside him. “Thank you for bringing me the King’s letter.” She said as she hugged him.

“You’re welcome Sarah, but I still don’t get why I had to be the one to do it.” Hoggle responded as he rubbed his head.

Sarah looked up at the Goblins who were sitting on the bed. “Could you guys put the game away and head back to the castle? We can play more later.”

The Goblins looked at one another and grinned. “No problem Lady.” Dusty grinned.
“Yea we cleans up.”

Once the game was back in its box and back on the shelf in Sarah’s closet, the Goblins returned the castle beyond the Goblin City. Sarah turned to Hoggle. “I think I know why Jareth wanted you to be the one to bring me the letter.”

“You….you do?”

“Yea.” Sarah sat on the bed. “The Goblins love Jareth and will do anything he tells them to without question. You on the other hand, don’t like him and he knows it, but at the same time he knows you’re my friend. That’s why he asked you so nicely instead of ordering you to do it. He wanted to prove to me just how sincere the words in his letter are.” She smiled.

“You gonna forgive the rat? For whatever it was he did.”

Sarah nodded. “I think so. If nothing else I’m willing to talk with him and try and work things out.” She stood and walked over to her vanity. “Not to be rude, but would you mind going back now?”

“Going to call for him?” Hoggle asked. When Sarah nodded, he took her hand. “Just be careful Sarah.”

She squeezed his hand. “I will. Thanks Hoggle.” After a quick hug and brief farewell, Hoggle returned home and Sarah was once again alone in her room.

Glancing at the clock, she saw it was just a little past noon. It would be a few more hours before her parents would be home from work and Toby was being picked up from daycare by Angela. Opening her window, Sarah took a deep breath as she stepped back. Grabbing the medallion around her neck, she focused on the Goblin King. “Jareth, please come talk to me.” She felt the medallion pulse and knew her message had been sent. She silently held her breath as she waited.

Chapter Text

Opening her window, Sarah took a deep breath as she stepped back. Grabbing the medallion around her neck, she focused on the Goblin King. “Jareth, please come talk to me.” She felt the medallion pulse and knew her message had been sent. She silently held her breath as she waited.

A moment later a barn owl landed on her window sill and watched her cautiously. “Jareth?” The owl ruffled his feathers and stared at the floor. Sarah smiled slightly. He was worried that she was still upset. Carefully, she walked over, gently picked up the owl, and held him close. The owl made no move to escape; he simply looked up at her. Sarah ran her hand softly over his head. “It’s alright Jareth. I forgive you.”

The next instant Sarah found herself in Jareth’s tight embrace, his head resting on top of hers. “Sarah.” He whispered her name so softly that she barely heard it.

She wrapped her arms around him and hugged him back. “I’m sorry too.”

“For what Precious?”

“Getting so upset and not listening. You tried to talk to me and explain, but I just demanded that you take me home.” She pulled away just enough so she could look at him. “I promise to do my best to listen and not jump to conclusions from now on.”

Smiling, Jareth caressed her cheek. “And I promise to think before I speak. I forget sometimes that there are still many things about my Kingdom that you don’t know about or understand. I try very hard to drop my walls and let you see the real me when we’re alone, but sometimes old habits cause me to be the viscous and arrogant King that I have to be most of the time.”

“We’ll just have to work on breaking those bad habits.” Sarah grinned.

Jareth took her hand and raised it to his lips. “Happily.” He said before kissing her palm. He let her go and walked over to sit in his usual spot by her vanity. “So, tell me Sarah what caused you to wish that you could help me?”

Sarah sat on her bed. “Well the Goblins showed up in a panic and told me the High Queen sent guards to get you. I heard you were drinking and throwing things after you brought me home last night. I couldn’t help but feel a little guilty for you skipping the meeting, which is why the High Queen sent troops after you.” She explained.

“Were you concerned that she was going to harm me in some way?” Jareth asked with a smirk.

Nodding, Sarah stared at the floor. “Cam told me how mean she can be.”

Jareth laughed. “Oh Precious, you have nothing to worry about. Even if she tried to kill me she can’t. The Labyrinth protects me, and I doubt she would try as it’s frowned upon by the Court to kill your own kin without a damned good reason.”

“Kin?” Sarah’s eyes widened as she looked at the laughing Goblin King. “Are you telling me that the High Queen is family to you?”

“That I am.” Jareth replied with a giant grin.

“That’s what you meant when you said you agreed to stay in the Court to keep the peace?”

“In a way.” Jareth stood and stretched. “My family isn’t very close.”

“So does that make you a Duke or Count or does Goblin King override your title in the High Court?” Sarah asked.

He laughed again. “I was a member of the High Court, as is the rest of my family. I barely saw them growing up and even now I only see them at gatherings of the Court. I gave up my title and anything that went with it when I took the throne of the Goblin Kingdom.” Looking around something dawned on him. “Did you skip school?”

Chuckling, Sarah nodded. “Yea I wasn’t feeling up to going.”

“Looks like we both skipped out on our obligations today.” He grinned.

“Yea looks that way.” Sarah stood and walked towards the door. “I haven’t had lunch yet, would you care to join me?”

“Happily.” Jareth walked over to where she stood. “Allow me to grant another wish for you now. Just say what you'd like for lunch and it shall be yours.” Sarah started to protest but he held up his hand to stop her. “It's the least I can do after I ruined our picnic yesterday.”

“Fine, but next time I make lunch”

“Deal.” Jareth held out his hand and Sarah shook it. “Now what can I get for you?”

Sarah thought a moment. “When I was visiting my aunt in DC, she took us all to this Asian restaurant one time. They had a whole menu of items made with raw fish.”

Jareth nodded. “So you'd like some sushi. I can arrange that. Any specific type?”

Sarah rubbed her chin. “I honestly don't know. It was years ago and I only tried a few types.”

“Then allow me to give you a large selection and help you find your preference.” He held his arm out to her. “The kitchen would be the best location for this unless you prefer to eat at the castle.”

“The kitchen's fine.” She took his arm and walked with him downstairs.
With a flick of his wrist Jareth summoned a crystal and soon there was a huge variety of sushi laid out on the table. Over the next hour and a half, Sarah took her time trying and savoring the various types of sushi rolls. Jareth explained what each one was before she tried it and even got her to try a couple of the Sashimi but she wasn't very fond of it. When she had her fill, Jareth cleared the table and they went to sit in the living room.

“That was delicious. Thank you Jareth.” Sarah said with a smile.

“You’re welcome Precious.” He returned her smile.

Sarah sat on the couch and leaned back. Letting out a big yawn, she stretched her arms over her head. “I could use a nap now.”

“Would you like me to leave so you can rest Sarah?”

She shook her head. “No you can stay longer, unless you need to get back.”

“I should return to the court at some point, but I have no desire to do so.” He said as he sat beside her. “Turn around.”

“What?”

“Don't argue. Just do as I say once in a while.” He stated firmly.

“Fine.” She did as he asked and soon closed her eyes in pleasure as he started massaging her back. “Oooh…”

“See, listening to me does have rewards at times my dear.” Jareth whispered in her ear.

“If this is what I get for letting you boss me around I might be okay with it.”

Jareth chuckled and continued kneading her back. “Your back is full of knots Precious. What are you doing all day?”

“Mostly sitting at a desk listening to the teachers go on and on about boring subjects.” Sarah said while she leaned her head to the left as he massaged her shoulders and neck.

“If that's what's causing these knots in your back, I may need to do this more often to prevent severe back pain. Have you been having trouble sleeping Sarah?”

“No, usually I'm exhausted and fall right to sleep. Last night was the first time I've had trouble sleeping in months.” Sarah replied as she turned to face him.

“My apologies for that.”

“Its alright Jareth. Plus I think that massage makes up for a week of troubled sleep.” She gave him a gentle smile and stood. “Where did you learn to do that?”

“I occasionally travel Aboveground. There are many things you can learn over the years if you're willing to learn them.” He leaned back against the couch and gave her a mischievous smirk. “There are many enjoyable things I could teach you Sarah.”

“I'm sure you could, but I'm fine not knowing them at the moment.”

He shrugged. “Your loss.”

“I do have a question though.”

“Ask away.” Jareth put his hands behind his head, leaned back, and put his feet up on the coffee table; earning him a glare from Sarah.

“How do you travel above ground without being called?”

“There are a few loopholes I exploit. When the veil between the two worlds is thin such as at Samhain, if there is someone with a strong enough belief I can go to them such as when I used to watch you at the park, or I travel by portal and use a lot of magic to stay Aboveground.”

“What about the others, the goblins and my friends?” Sarah asked.

“The goblins only need a small amount of magic or belief in it to go somewhere. You and young Toby are enough to permit them to travel here freely it seems. As for your friends, well your little Dwarf friend uses his magic to create a portal and he then brings the others with him.” Jareth explained.

“That's why he comes through the mirror?” Jareth nodded. “What about the night I beat the Labyrinth? I was sitting by the mirror and saw them behind me and when I turned around they weren't there. Then suddenly everyone was in my room, Hoggle, Ludo, Didymus, the wise man, goblins even those annoying fierys.”

Jareth sighed. “That was my doing. You said you needed all of us, so I allowed them to visit. I had hoped you would notice that someone was missing.”

“Missing?” Sarah thought back to that night. “You…you were missing. Why didn't you just join the others in my room that night?”

Jareth stood and walked around keeping his back to her. “I couldn't. Not without you calling for me directly.”

Sarah watched him walk around silently. “So you sent everyone to see me in hopes that I'd ask about you and call for you?”

“It was a slim hope, but yes. I was sitting in the tree outside your window for a while, watching you with the others. I eventually gave up and went home. Your friends knew they had until morning to return to the Underground.” Jareth told her sadly as he stared at the pictures of Sarah and Toby on the Wall

Sarah slowly walked over and hugged him from behind. “I'm sorry Jareth.”

“You have nothing to be sorry for Precious.”

“But I've caused you so much sorrow.”

He turned to face her and pulled her into his arms. “The past is just that love, the past. No point lingering on it. I'm with you now and that's all we should focus on.” He kissed her forehead and gave her a soft smile. “Now come on, you should get some rest.” He started to lead her upstairs, but they both stopped when the doorbell rang.

Jareth moved up the staircase a little bit so he was out of sight and Sarah went to check who was at the door. Opening it slowly, Sarah smiled seeing Beckie and Whit. “Hey guys.”
“Sar are you alright?” Beckie cried.

“We were worried when you weren't at school.” Whit informed her

Sarah opened the door fully and motioned for them to come in. Beckie rushed over and felt Sarah's forehead. “Are you sick? Do you have a fever? Did you eat something bad?”

Whit followed her in chuckling. “Hun, if you give her a chance to speak she might tell us why she missed school.”

“Oh right.” Beckie was quiet for a moment. Sarah closed and locked the door and Beckie started again. “I was just so worried. You never miss school.” She threw her arms around Sarah.

Sarah hugged her and laughed quietly.” Everything's perfect now. Right Jareth?”

He came down the stairs into view, adjusting his gloves. “Of course Precious.”

“Your majesty.” Beckie let go of Sarah and bowed.

“Please no need for that. I told you last time a friend of Sarah's is a friend of mine. Just treat me as if I were a normal human.” Jareth told them.

“Alright Sparklepants.” Whit smiled.

Jareth glared and opened his mouth to speak, but Sarah cut him off. “A normal guy, remember Jareth.”

He sighed. “Correct Sarah. I guess I should get used to the nicknames, though I do ask you refrain from calling me such things in front of the goblins.”

“Deal your Glitterness.” Whit smirked.

Jareth walked over to Sarah. “I should get back before the High Queen sends her guards to look for me.” He wrapped his arms around her. “You owe me for putting up with the nicknames.” He whispered in her ear before kissing her forehead. He let her go and stepped over to her friends. “Pleasure to see you ladies again.” He bowed to both of them and turned back to Sarah. “I'll see you later Precious.” He turned into an owl, flew up to her room, and out the open window.

“So that's why you weren't at school.” Beckie grinned.

Sarah shook her head and sighed. “It's not what you think. Come on and I'll explain everything.” Sarah led Beckie and Whit up to her room and told them all about the night before and the events of the day.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

When Jareth returned to the court he wasn't surprised to see they were still arguing and shouting. He silently took his seat and prayed this would be over sooner than later.

“Well, well.” High Queen Ta'leena's voice rang out across the room, causing everyone to become silent and focus their attention on her. “Look who decided to return all on his own. I was beginning to think I might need to send my guards to fetch you again.” She smirked.

“I told you I would, so here I am.” He replied. Jareth hated when she did this. He'd rather be invisible than the center of attention at Court. This was her way of showing him she was still in control, even if he broke away and got his own Kingdom.

“Yes you did, but that was over 4 hours ago. I take it you dealt with your wisher.” The High Queen asked.

“I did.” He almost preferred the screams and shouts to this.

“And the child…”

Jareth glanced up to look her in the eyes. “Child?”

“Yes, the wished away child. Or did you let another little girl beat you?” She grinned evilly.

So that was her game. “No child was wished away this time. I do answer other wishes.”

“And it took 4 hours to grant this wish?” She raised an eyebrow. “What pray tell was the wish?”

“None of the Court’s concern.” Jareth seethed.

“Perhaps the Goblin King was seducing the wisher and bedding her.” The Pixie Queen suggested. Jareth shot her a death glare.

“It is said that he prefers humans to his own kind after all.” The Troll King said with disgust.

Jareth started to protest but one of the three Elven Queens cut him off. “Oh no, I heard it was only one human he favored. So much in fact that he let her win back the child she wished away.”

Jareth jumped to his feet “That's a lie! Sarah beat the Labyrinth fair and square. She reached the castle within the allotted time.”

“Sarah is it? The High Queen inquired. “Not the wisher?”

Jareth stared at her. He had walked into her trap. Ever since Sarah beat the Labyrinth, she had been trying to get information about the human that outwitted the Goblin King at his own game. He had refused to give her one detail for fear of what she might do, and now he foolishly let her know Sarah's name. “What of it?” He tried to play it off. “I keep detailed records of all wishers and the children they wish away. Her name of course would stick out in my mind, as she was the first one to win back the child.”

“Yet never before have you even whispered her name. What's changed?” The High Queen asked as she slowly made her way towards the still-standing Goblin King. “In fact any mention of her before and you spoke with distain. Yet now you sound almost proud of her defeat of your little maze.” She stopped when she was right behind him and placed her hands on his shoulders and pushed him down into his seat. Leaning over his shoulder she whispered, “So tell me my boy, what changed your attitude so?”

Jareth growled. He hated when she called him her boy. He may be young still by Fae standards, but he was no longer a boy and he certainly didn't like anyone calling him theirs. He belonged to no one, except Sarah if she would have him. “I'm not your boy.” He said through gritted teeth.

“My, my, aren't we bold today.” She said it almost sing song like. “Something has definitely changed with you Jareth.” Her voice was suddenly full of venom. “I don't like it one bit.”

Jareth laughed. “I'm sorry I don't please you, your Highness, but I never have. So why so upset now?”

“You displease me even more than usual.” She spat as she returned to her seat.

“Well now that we've established that you're more displeased with me than normal, can we return to whatever today's argument was about? Or better yet how about we end all of this foolish? Nothing is being accomplished as usual, except for giving me a migraine.”

“That is enough!” Ta'leena yelled.

“I agree with the Goblin King.” the Dwarf King spoke up. “Nothing is ever accomplished by these meetings.”

“I concur.” The Queens of the wood elves spoke up. “We meet here once every cycle of the moon and all we do is argue. Does this court even have a purpose?”

The room filled with the angry shouts of the others agreeing and demanding the Queen actually do something. High Queen Ta'leena glared at Jareth, who simply sat back with a smug grin on his face. “Silence!” Ta'leena cried and the room quickly became quiet. “Since it doesn't appear we're going to accomplish anything else today, I believe we should adjourn until next month.” She stood and bowed to the room. “Until next time.” The moment she said that, everyone stood and started to leave. “Jareth I'd like…” she stopped when she saw he was gone. She glared at his empty chair. Motioning for one of her guard, she commanded him to fetch Jaxel and Alastair. “I'll figure what out what has changed you so much Goblin King, and when I do I'll eliminate it.”

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Jareth wasted no time getting home. The less time he spent at Ta'leena's Palace the better. Sitting on his bed, he sighed. He slipped up and let the High Queen learn his Champion’s name. True there were lots of humans named Sarah, but that was still more than he ever intended to let anyone in the court know about her. He also knew that his behavior today had pissed the High Queen off thoroughly. He scoffed. Who cared what the High Queen or any of the others thought. Sarah was right. He really had little if any need of any of them.

Kicking off his boots, Jareth laid back on the bed and stared at the ceiling. “Ta'leena was right about one thing.” He said to himself. “I have changed because of Sarah. I never would have stood up to her like that before.” He smirked. Just as he was about to close his eyes, there was a light knock on his door. He sat up and wondered what troubles his goblins were causing now “Enter.”

The door opened and Cam poked his tiny head in. “Kingy?”

“What are you doing here? Shouldn't you be with Sarah?” He asked as he stood.

“Lady sends me.” He hurried in carrying a plate wrapped in tinfoil. “Lady tells me to leaves this in your room if yous not backs from big Queenie's meeting.” He smiled as he ran over to the King.

Jareth took the plate and removed the foil. “Brownies?” He looked at Cam.

“Lady makes them. She says it might makes you happy.” Cam stood there staring at him.

Jareth smiled. “Your Lady was absolutely correct. Her homemade treats always make me happy.”

Cam jumped up and down. “Lady will be happys too. I go tells her.”

“Wait.” Jareth called. Cam stopped and looked at his king. “I have a much better plan.” He grinned.

Chapter Text

After explaining everything to her friends, Sarah had baked brownies while they filled her in on what she missed at school, which wasn't much. After sending Beckie home with a tray of brownies for her sister, she returned to her room. She asked Cam to take a plate of brownies to Jareth or leave it in his room if he wasn’t there. The others were asked to return to the castle as well so she could lay down to take a nap. She woke up a few hours later to her father feeling her forehead “Hey Princess. How ya feeling?”

She sat up slowly and smiled at him. “I feel alright, Daddy. You haven't called me Princess in a very long time.”

He chuckled and sat on the edge of her bed. “Yeah I haven't. I guess the fact that you're all grown up is finally getting to me. You're a senior and soon you'll be off to college.” He brushed a strand of hair from her face. “Where did my little girl go?”

Sarah hugged her father. “I'll always be your little girl Daddy. No matter how old or how big I get or how far from home I am.”

Returning her hug, he smiled. “I'm going to hold you to that, especially when you bring a boy home.” When he pulled away he noticed Sarah was blushing slightly. “So when are you going to let me meet him?”

“What?” Sarah went wide eyed. “I don't…”

“Relax Sarah. A father knows when his baby has a crush.” He picked up the medallion that was around her neck. “You told us a friend gave this to you for your Halloween costume, yet you never take it off.” Robert commented. “And that tells me either this symbol has some great meaning to you or the gift-giver is important.” Sarah stared at the medallion and she wondered if her father could feel the warmth of the Labyrinth's magic. “So who is he?”

Looking up she saw the teasing grin on her father's face. “He's just a friend Daddy.”

“So it is a boy.” He grinned.

Chuckling, Sarah shook her head. “Yes he is of the male gender, but we're just friends at the moment. We're still getting to know one another.”

“But you'd like him to be more?” Inquired Robert.

“I…” Sarah ducked her head. “I don't know. I like him, but there's still a lot I don't know about him. I want to take this slow and get to know and see where it goes from there.”

“Smart girl. I always knew you got my brains.” He smirked. Robert sighed. “You look so much like your mother.”

Sarah gave him a gentle smile and sat there in awkward silence for a bit. Her father hadn't mentioned her mother in years. “Does it bother you?” She asked timidly.

“No, I'm thrilled that you've grown into such a beautiful young woman. I just wish sometimes Linda had hung around to see you, but then knowing her she'd be jealous of your beauty.” He said half-jokingly. He took a deep breath and took her hands and his. “Honey I know I haven't been the best father…”

“Daddy…”

Robert held up his other hand to stop her. “I wasn't there for you like I should have been. When your mother and I divorced I pushed you away because you constantly remind me of Linda and how I failed. I didn't even ask you how you felt about Irene when I started dating and later married her.” He sighed. “She always said you treated her like an evil stepmother. I would laugh it off and figured you were still adjusting. Once Toby was born I figured you'd settle into the big sister role and be fine.”

When he paused Sarah spoke up. “Daddy you were busy with the law firm, and you still are you, but you made sure I had a home, food, clothes, and all the books I could ever ask for. So don't ever think you're a horrible father. There are people out there that hurt their children. I don't recall you ever spanking me, even when I deserved it.” She squeezed his hand. “And Irene and I have come to an understanding and I'd be lost without Tobes.”

Robert smiled. “I just want you to do one thing for me.”

“What daddy?”

“When you find the one, whether its this boy that you like now or one you meet years from now, I want you to fight to keep it.” He stood and stretched. “My biggest regret is not fighting to keep your mother. She was my first love and I thought she felt exactly as I did. When I came home to her goodbye note I thought she'll be back once she cools off. Next thing I know I got divorce papers. I never even tried to talk her out of it.” He shook his head and looked at his daughter. “If you fall in love fight to keep it. Don't let it walk out of your life like I let your mother do.”

Sarah stood and hugged her father. “I will Daddy.”

A tapping on the window startled them both. They looked to see a white barn owl at the window and Robert walked over to get a better look. “I don't think I've ever seen one get so close to the house before.”

“He's been hanging around a lot lately.” Sarah said with a smirk as she watched the owl ruffle his feathers.

“Keep your window closed Sarah. You don't want it flying in your room at night.”

Sarah tried not to laugh as the owl glared at her father. “I don't think he's a threat but I'll be careful and keep a close eye on him.” The owl turned to look at her and she didn't know why but she blushed slightly from his intense stare. Luckily her father didn't notice that.

“Well I'll let you get back to resting. There's a plate of food in the fridge if you want it. Toby's in bed and Irene is out with the ladies tonight. I'll be in my study if you need me.” He gave her a quick hug and kissed her on the forehead. “Goodnight Sarah.”

“Goodnight Daddy.” Sarah watched him until the door was closed and then hurried to the window. The moment it was open Jareth flew in.

“Don't want me flying in huh? One might think your father knew I wasn't just a normal owl.” He smirked

“Shhh!” Sarah shushed him. “Keep your voice down. I'm not sure daddy went downstairs.”

“Sorry Precious.” He whispered as he watched her close the window. When she turned around to face him, he immediately wrapped his arms around her.

“And just how long were you at the window?” She asked as she pushed him away.

He gave her a slightly hurt look for being pushed away, but then started smirking. “Not long. Why was there something I wasn't supposed to hear? A confession of your undying love for someone?” He said teasingly.

Sarah couldn’t help but smile. “No, nothing like that. It was just daddy being a bit more emotional than I'm used to, but still I don't like the idea of you eavesdropping when I'm having a private conversation with someone in my room.” Sarah jabbed her finger in his chest. “You’re supposed to respect my privacy, remember. So no more sitting there listening.”

Jareth grabbed her hand to stop the jabs. “I only heard him say something about not letting love walk out on you like your mother did.” I tapped the glass the minute I realized you weren’t alone, so that you knew I was here.” He pulled her back into a warm embrace. “I would never deliberately spy on you. I haven’t even tried to see if I can view you in my crystals again, and if I were to watch you through them it would just be a brief moment to make sure you’re alright or if you’re with someone that would prevent me from visiting.” He placed his head on top of her and hugged her tighter.

“Alright. Just want to make sure we were clear on that.” She wrapped her arms around him and hugged him back. “So why are you here? Usually you don’t come until I call.”

“I just wanted to come and thank you for the delicious brownies.” He whispered in her ear.

Sarah laughed lightly. “You had to fly all the way here to thank me?”

“Well I won't deny that I'll take any excuse I can to see you.” He grinned “And I thought you'd like to hear all the trouble I caused the court today.” He added as he released her and went to stand by the vanity.

Sarah sat on her bed. “Oh no, what did you do?” Jareth sat beside her and told her all about the uproar he caused. He left out the part about the High Queen learning her name. He didn't see any need to worry her with the Queen's plotting. “Do you think anything will change?” Sarah asked.

“Perhaps.” He replied as he stared at the wall. “I guess I'll find out in a month.”

Sarah took his hand and squeezed it. “Maybe the others will actually start solving problems.” She smiled

Jareth couldn't help but smile at her positive attitude. “Maybe, but either way I know I can face whatever they throw at me because I've got the support of my dear friend.”

Sarah leaned against his shoulder. “And I know I can pass the last of my classes because I've got your support.”

Chuckling, Jareth wrapped an arm around her waist. “I do believe your support is helping me more than mine helps you. I’m not sure I can be of much help with your studies.”

“Know anything about American government?” She asked jokingly. Sarah looked up to find Jareth staring at her.

“Afraid not Precious.” Jareth whispered as he slowly leaned closer. Sarah gazed into his eyes as he got closer and closer. He stopped when his face was mere inches from hers. Slowly her eyes traveled from his eyes to his lips and her tongue darted out to wet her own. Just as she thought he was going to kiss, her he pulled away and stood. “I should probably be going.”

Sarah stood and faced away from him. She was the one that wanted to take things slow, so why did she feel so disappointed when he didn't kiss her? “You can stay if you want.” She said softly. “I don't have class tomorrow.”

“Taking another sick day Precious?” He teased.

“No, it's Thanksgiving on Thursday so schools are closed the rest of the week. With all my family being here Thursday I'm not sure I'll be able to get away and spend any time with you until they leave on Sunday.” Sarah explained with a heavy sigh.

“Missing me already?” Jareth said it jokingly, but he honestly wanted her answer to be yes.

“I'd rather be with you than deal with the extended family.” She admitted. Chuckling, she added, “I'd rather be with you than dealing with most of the things I have to do.”

“You could be.” He said quickly. “All you have to do is say the word and I'll take you away from all of it Sarah.”

Turning to face him she smiled. “I know, but I'm not ready for that yet.” She walked over to where he was standing and brushed a strand of hair from his face. “I haven't made up my mind, but either way I want to wait until after high school.”

“I understand Sarah.” He caressed her cheek with the back of his hand. “I just want you to know the offer is there no matter what. Even if it's just for a few days.”

“A few days away might be nice. Maybe I can sneak away for a few days during winter break.” Sarah suggested.

“I can certainly arrange that. What would you tell your parents though?” Jareth inquired.

“I'll think of something.” She smiled as she sat in the chair by her vanity. “So what do you usually do for winter solstice and Yule?”

“Three years with my goblins and you don't know Precious?” he grinned “Are you telling me you never asked them what goes on at the castle or what I was up to?”

“Well they said you usually have a party with them and then you disappear for a week or so.” Sarah told him as he walked around smirking “So where do you disappear to?”

Stopping, he turned to face her. “You'll have to wait and see Sarah.” He sat by the window. “What do you usually do for… I believe your holiday is Christmas?”

“Yea it is.” Sarah shrugged. "The usual I guess. We decorate, bake cookies, and on Christmas Eve we go to my Nanny's for dinner and gifts.”

“I wasn't aware you had a Nanny. Was she incapable of babysitting Toby?” Jareth inquired.

Sarah looked at him confused for a moment, then it dawned on her what he meant. Laughing, she shook her head. “She's not a hired Nanny.”

“You mean there are other types?” The look of confusion on his face had her doubled over laughing. “Will you please explain what is so funny?” Jareth crossed his arms over his chest and glared at the laughing girl.

Getting her laughter under control, Sarah wiped her eyes. “My Nanny is my grandmother. She never wanted to be called grandmother because it made her feel old. She preferred to be called Nanny.” Jareth nodded in understanding. “Plus she lives 3 hours away.”

“Which is why she wasn't able to babysit.” Jareth adjusted his gloves and watched Sarah.

“Are you ever going to tell me why you always wear those gloves?” She questioned.

“One day I might.” He glanced out the window. “It's a lovely night out.”

Sarah looked out the window and nodded. “Yea it is.”

“Care to go for a walk with me?” He stood and held his hand out to her.

“Now?” Jareth nodded “It's too late. Daddy will never let me leave.”

“Who said anything about asking?” He smirked as he leaned against the wall. Call for your goblins.”
Sarah stood and looked around in case they were already there. “Goblin Five to me.”

“Yes lady?” Cam was the first to appear.

“Lady okay?” Patch asked.

“Needs us to deliver sweets again?” Dusty asked.

“No, I need you.” Jareth said startling all five of them.

“Kingy!” They cried.

“Relax, I need you to remain here and guard Sarah's room. If her parents try to come in fetch us immediately, so that I can return our Lady without suspicion.” He explained.

“Where Kingy and Lady going?” Flower inquired.

“For a stroll.” Jareth walked over and locked the door. “We'll be back shortly.” He held his arm out to Sarah, who shook her head but took his arm anyway. “Shall we visit the park Precious?”

“The park?” Sarah looked at Jareth and when she looked in front of them again she saw the bridge leading to the park in the Moonlight. “Hope you brought a flashlight.” Jareth laughed and with the flick of his wrist there was a crystal in his hand that glowed brightly. “Show off.” Sarah mumbled causing him to laugh more.

Arm in arm they walked together over the bridge to the spot Sarah used to spend her time play-acting. “I haven't been here since the day you wished young Toby away.” Jareth said as he looked around. “Looks much different from this perspective of course.”

“That's right, you were always in your owl form. Sarah looked around in the dark. “The Obelisk, you always sat there.” She pointed to it once she found the outline of it in the dark. “I always thought it was odd for an owl to be out during the day.”

“You don't know how many times I wanted to just sit on the bench where your dog sat and watch you.” Jareth was right behind her. “Do you remember any of the stories?”

She turned to face him. “I might.” She gazed up into his eyes which seemed to glow in the moonlight.

“Would you act one of them out for me?” Jareth cupped her chin and made her look up at him when she tried to turn away. “Please.”

She nodded. “Alright I'll try to remember one.

Jareth smile and tossed crystal in hands and summoned another. He tossed the second and summoned a third. He repeated this until there was a ring of glowing crystals around them. He took a seat on the bench which was just outside the circle and waited for Sarah to begin.

Sarah ducked her head and tried to recall one of the stories. Thinking of one she smiled and looked up. “What, jealous Oberon! Fairies, skip hence. I have forsworn his bed and company.” She paused and recited the lines for Oberon in her head quickly before continuing. “Then I must be thy lady: but I know when thou hast stolen away from fairy land, and in the shape of Corin sat all day. Playing on pipes and versing love to amorous Phillida. Why art thou here? Come from the farthest Steppe of India? But that, forsooth, the bouncing Amazon, your buskin'd mistress and your warrior love, to Theseus must be wedded, and you come to give their bed joy and prosperity.”

Sarah paused again, probably running through lines that didn’t belong to the character she was playing he assumed. Jareth watch her with a giant grin on his face. He didn’t recall ever hearing this particular story before. The name in the first line she recited had caught his attention though. He would ask her about it when she was done with her recitation.

Sarah took a deep breath and continued. “These are the forgeries of jealousy: and never, since the middle summer's spring, met we on hill, in dale, by paved fountain or by rushy brook, or in the beached margent of the sea, to dance our ringlets to the whistling wind. But with thy brawls thou hast disturbed our sport. Therefore the winds, as in revenge, have sucked up from the sea. Contagious fogs; which falling in the land have every pelting river made so proud that they have overborne their continents: the ox hath therefore stretched his yoke in vain. The ploughman lost his sweat, and the green corn hath rotted ere his attained a beard; the fold stands empty in the drowned field. Crows are fatted with the murrion flock; The nine men's morris is filled up with mud, and the quaint mazes in the wanton green for lack of tread are undistinguishable.”
Sarah paused a moment and ran through what she had just said trying to recall the rest. “The Human…. The human mortals want their winter here; no night is now with hymn or carol blest: therefore the moon, pale in her anger, washes all the air. That diseases do abound:
And thorough this distemperature we see the seasons alter: hoary-headed frosts far in the fresh lap of the crimson rose, an odorous chaplet of sweet summer buds is, as in mockery, set. The spring, the summer, the childing autumn, angry winter, change their wonted liveries, and the mazed world. By their increase, now knows not which is which: and this same progeny of evils comes from our debate, from our dissension; we are their parents and original.”

She paused again and Jareth just stared at her. He wasn’t sure what had him captivated more, the words she was saying or the sheer beauty of the girl herself. If this play was indeed about the Oberon he was thinking of, then he was certain Sarah was playing the part of the Fairy Queen Titania. If it was true he couldn’t wait to see the look on her face when he told her that he had met both of them briefly when he was just a lad.

Sarah turned her back to Jareth and bit her thumb as she tried to remember the rest. Had it really been that long ago that she tried out for the role in the drama club? Turning back to face Jareth she said the lines that came to her, though she wasn’t certain if they were correct. “Set your heart at rest: the fairy land buys not the child of me. His mother was a votaress of my order: full often hath she gossiped by my side, and sat with me on Neptune's yellow sands, when we have laughed to see the sails conceive and grow big-bellied with the wanton wind. Which she, with pretty and with swimming gait following,—her womb then rich with my young squire,—
Would imitate, and sail upon the land, to fetch me trifles, and return again. As from a voyage, rich with merchandise. But she, being mortal, of that boy did die; and for her sake do I rear up her boy, and for her sake I will not part with him.”

She paused briefly and glanced at Jareth. Though he was outside the circle of lights, she could still make out his face, grinning at her like a hungry lion that was stalking his prey. She felt her cheeks get warm as she forced herself to look away and continue with the recitation. “Perchance till after Theseus' wedding-day. If you will patiently dance in our round and see our moonlight revels, go with us; if not, shun me, and I will spare your haunts.”

Sarah took a deep breath before saying the last lines for the scene. “Not for thy fairy kingdom. Fairies, away! We shall chide downright, if I longer stay.” She bowed to Jareth to signal that she was done.

The moment she bowed, Jareth was on his feet clapping for her. “Wonderful Sarah!” He smiled as he approached her.

She stood up and brushed her hair behind her ear. “I’m sure I forgot a lot of lines. I haven’t recited that in a long time.”

Stopping right in front of her, Jareth placed his hands on her shoulders. “Still it was marvelous. Forgotten lines or not, you said them beautifully.” He pulled her into a hug and kissed her forehead. “Thank you Sarah. I have to say watching you from a closer seat made the performance all the better.” He released her and watched her turn away, her cheeks red. Grinning he picked up a crystal and made it vanish. As he continued clearing the circle of lights he asked, “Were you playing the role of the Fairy Queen?”

“Yes. I’ve always loved Titania. Do you know a Midsummer Night’s Dream?”

“Is that the name of the story?” Jareth had removed all but one crystal, which he had in his hand as he turned back to Sarah, who nodded in response to his query. “Can’t say I know the story, but I know the people. Well at least I know of them. I met Lord Oberon and Lady Titania once when I was small.”

“You did?” Jareth couldn’t help but smile at how her eyes lit up at his comment.

“Yes I was introduced to them at my coming of age ceremony; after all they are my grandparents.”

“Your….your grandparents?!” Jareth chuckled as he wondered if her eyes could get any larger. “I knew your family was important and part of the High Court, but I never knew you were related to King Oberon and Queen Titania. Heck I wasn’t even sure they were real.” Sarah said in amazement.

“Oh they are very real, but they aren’t part of the High Court. The High Court that you’ve heard of came after their rein. It was King Talonas that brought the races together and established the Court. Lord Oberon never cared for the other races, still doesn’t from what I hear. Lady Titania is a bit more understanding, but wants nothing to do with the Court either. Last I heard they were living peacefully on some remote island away from everyone.”

“Wow. Who would have thought that Shakespeare was writing about real people?” Sarah smiled.

“Who is this Shakespeare? Is he a Fae?” Jareth asked as he took her hand and started leading her to the small wooded area of the park.

“No, he was a human, at least I think he was. He was a poet that lived many years ago. He wrote a Midsummer’s Night Dream and a number of other plays. I never cared for his plays other than the one I was just reciting and one call Much Ado About Nothing.”

“Any particular reason?” Jareth asked as he sat down on the ground and leaned back against a tree.

Sarah sat beside him and leaned against his shoulder. “Well, for one it was required reading at school, which is always hard to read, mainly because the teachers want us to do these stupid papers on the reading. We have to tell what the writer was thinking and what they meant by certain things. Honestly I think they read way more into the words that the writer was meaning.”

Jareth laughed. “How does one read more into words than the speaker meant?”

“For example if the writer said the room had a specific color curtain, the teacher thinks it had to do with mood or its foreshadowing an upcoming event. The only writer I can see that working for was Edgar Allen Poe.” Seeing the look on confusion on his face she explained it to him. “Poe was a poet that lived after Shakespeare. He was known for writing lots of hidden meaning into his work. I’ll have to let you borrow a few of my books. Sometimes reading them for yourself is easier than having it explained.” She said with a slight shiver.

“Are you cold Precious?” Jareth asked, his voice full of concern.

“A little.” She rubbed her arms.

Jareth summoned his cloak and wrapped it around Sarah and himself. “Is that better?”

“Much, thank you.” She said as she pulled the black cloak closer. She smiled remembering the first time she saw Jareth in this cloak. She never imagined it would feel so soft or smell so nice. It was his scent and she knew it.

“I would like that very much.” Jareth said softly.

“What?” Sarah looked up at him. She had been so focused on the cloak she missed what he was saying.

“Reading some of your books.” He responded. “I’d enjoy that. It’ll give me something to do since I won’t be able to spend time with my favorite little actress because of visiting family.”

“I’m not an actress.” She smiled as she looked away.

“You are to me. You’ve improved greatly since the last time I watched you.” He wrapped an arm around her shoulder and pulled her closer. “Thank you again for doing that for me. I enjoyed watching you immensely.” He placed a gentle kiss on her temple. “I suppose I should get you home.”

“Probably a good idea. Toby will be up early and want me to help him with his decorations.” Sarah replied with a sigh.

“Decorations?”

“It’s a tradition we started last year. I help him make handmade decorations before each holiday. Mainly it’s a way to keep him out of Irene’s hair while she does the baking and keeps me from having to be stuck in the kitchen helping.” Sarah explained.

Jareth let out a light chuckle. “Sounds like a good tradition to me. Could you perhaps make a decoration or two for me?”

“Going to start celebrating Thanksgiving Goblin King?” She teased.

“Perhaps. I do have a lot to be thankful for this year.” He grinned.

“Oh?” She raised an eyebrow.

“Of course, I have you in my life again don’t I?” He kissed her cheek and stood. “Come, let’s get you home Precious.” He held out his hand to her.

She took his hand and he helped her up. Wrapping his arms around her, Sarah felt the air around her start to shift and closed her eyes knowing he was transporting them back to her room. A moment later, she opened her eyes to see the goblins sitting on her bed playing cards. “Hi Lady!” Cam called as he dropped his cards and hopped off the bed.

“Hey gang.” She smiled.

“Hi Lady. Hi Kingy.” Flower said with a smile.

“Lady wants us to leaves so you and Kingy cans be alone?” Dusty smirked.

Sarah then realized that Jareth still had her wrapped in his embrace and started to pull away, but he wouldn’t let her. “No need.” Jareth stated. “I’ll be heading back to the castle so our Lady can get some rest. You five stay and keep watch over my Sarah.” He kissed her cheek and let her go.

Noticing the cloak was still around her, Sarah took it off and started to hand it to him. “Thanks for letting me use it.”

He held his hand up. “Keep it Precious. I think it looks better on you anyway.”

“But don’t you need this to intimidate stupid wishers that ask you to take their babies?” She said teasingly.

Jareth laughed. “I’ve only worn that particular cloak when facing one wisher. I have other cloaks
that I’m told make me appear a lot scarier.”

“You mean…”

“Yes dearest, I wore my favorite cloak when I came to face you.” He took the cloak and wrapped it around her. “And now I’m giving it to you.” He kissed her forehead. “Goodnight Sarah.” Before Sarah could respond, Jareth turned into an owl and flew out the window that had magically reopened.

She raced to the window to watch him fly away. “Goodnight Jareth.” She said softly as she gripped the medallion around her neck. It pulsed softly and she knew he had heard her.

Chapter Text

Jareth sat at his desk going over reports and trying his best not to think of Sarah. With her family arriving for the Thanksgiving holiday; it would be several days before he would be able to see her again, at least that was the plan. He wasn't sure if he could make it that long without seeing her. Sighing, he leaned back in his chair and summoned a crystal. He smiled as he watched her through it. She was helping Toby make paper turkeys to hang up for decorations.

His thoughts were interrupted by panicked goblin that came charging in. “Kingy! Kingy!”

“What?” Jareth looked up as he made the crystal disappear.

“At the gate! There's someone demanding to see you!” The goblin cried.

Summoning another crystal, he groaned when he saw who as at the gate to the Labyrinth. “Would it be wrong to drop him an oubliette and leave him?”

“Are you asking me Kingy?” The little goblin asked nervously.

“No, it was a rhetorical question. Don’t worry about it.” He sighed and stood. “Send the dwarf to get him and tell Hoggle to take him the long way. Maybe the fool will find an oubliette on his own." The goblin bowed right away he hurried off to find Hoggle.

Jareth paced his study as he stared into the crystal. “If he's here then Ta'leena must have sent him. I'll have to keep a close watch for her spies.” Taking the crystal and tossing it in the air, he switched where it was focused. “I'll just keep an eye on my Sarah until the idiot makes it to the castle.” He sat on the couch and smiled as he watched her play with Toby.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

At the main gate, a young looking Fae in dark clothing named Alastair was pacing impatiently. “Come on cousin!” He cried. “I know you're in there brooding like you always do.” He said. “Why does he insist on this ridiculous barrier around the Labyrinth? He could at least let me transport to the castle gate. It’s not like I'm a stranger or an enemy.” He mumbled as he paced. “I'm family for crying out loud!” He banged his fist on the gate again. “Jareth!”

“You ain't going to gets in that way.” A gruff voice said behind Alastair.

He quickly turned to see Hoggle behind him. “I know you. You work for my cousin. Did he send you here to show me the way to the castle?”

Hoggle shrugged. “Perhaps or maybe he sent me to lead you to the bog of Eternal stench.” He grinned.

“Not that awful place again.” Alastair groaned. “Can't you just take me to the castle? There must be a faster, direct route right?”

“Only one way to get to the castle, well unless you're the King. He has the fastest way. Hoggle replied.

“Yes, I know. He simply uses magic. I could do that if he would drop the stupid barrier. What is he worried about?” Alastair asked.

Hoggle shrugged. “You'll have to ask him. Now if you'll follow me.” He headed away from the gate. “You’d think the fool would at least remember where the real entrance is.” he mumbled to himself.

“Did you say something?” Alastair called from behind him.

“No, no.” Hoggle answered as he kept walking with Alastair following right behind him.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Hours later Alastair finally reached the Goblin City “I believe you know the way from here.” Hoggle said before turning around and leaving.

“Thanks for nothing! I swear Jareth pays you to take me the long way!” Alistair called after him.

“Now, now cousin. Would I do such a thing?” Alastair turned to see Jareth leaning against a building.

“Yes, you would.”

Jareth smirked. “True I would and probably have. Now what brings you to my doorstep Alastair?”

“Auntie said you were acting strange and wanted me to check on you and the state of your kingdom.” he answered in a serious tone.

“Oh she did, did she? Well my kingdom and myself are fine. Thank the High Queen for her concern and kindly tell her to mind her own damn business.” Jareth said firmly as he stood up straight and put his hands on his hips.

“Jareth you know Auntie is only worried about you. She said you were very rude to her at today's meeting.” Alastair stated.

“Rude?” Jareth laughed. “She called me rude for actually standing up to her. I suppose her behavior was perfectly fine and not at all over dramatic?”

Alastair shrugged. “I wasn't there cousin, so I can't say. You're treading dangerous waters though Jareth.” He warned. “Aunt Ta'leena's not happy at all with you. She sent me to monitor you. She believes something or someone is influencing your judgement lately and she told me to find it and eliminated it.”

“Eliminated it?” Jareth's eyes widened "You can't be serious?"

“I am. Now if you know what the cause of your sudden change is, I suggest you keep it hidden.” Alastair sighed. “I know we were never close as children, but I truly do admire you. You conquered the Labyrinth and won your own kingdom. True you pissed off most of the court, but I think it's an accomplishment to be proud of. I know dealing with Auntie isn't easy but you still need to tread carefully.”

“What do you intend to do about the High Queen's wish for you to eliminate the cause of my change?” Jareth asked as he eyed his cousin.

“What change?” Alistair grinned. “You seem like the same old cantankerous Goblin King to me.”

Smirking, Jareth held out his hand to his cousin. “So you'll disobey your Queen?”

“I'll stand with you cousin.” Alastair stated as he took his hand. “Auntie may not like it but I'm curious to learn your secrets and the uproar you caused at court was quite entertaining.”

“My secret will remain just that, a secret.” Jareth walked his cousin to the castle and had him tell all that happened after he left Ta'leena's castle.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Hours later Jareth sat in his room staring at roaring fire burning in the fireplace. He was surprised that he had actually enjoyed his visit with Alastair. Normally he would have just sent him away after learning the reason for the visit. Another change in him that Sarah had caused. He was willing to actually talk with others instead of sending them away, but what truly surprised him though was Alastair’s claim that he would stand with him against the High Queen.

Summoning a crystal, Jareth checked in on Sarah. She was sitting in her room reading. He had agreed to stay away until her family left, but he wanted nothing more than to go to her at that moment. Sighing, he tossed the crystal over his shoulder. “I managed three years without her, I can survive three more days.” He told himself. Standing he went to his bed and climb under the covers.

Closing his eyes, he tried to sleep, but sleep eluded him. After an hour of tossing and turning, he threw the covers off and sat up. He ran his fingers through his wild blonde hair and sighed. “This is ridiculous. I'm the king. I can bend time and move the stars, so why can't I sleep after one day of not seeing her?” Making up his mind, he stood and changed into an owl and flew out his window as fast as his wings would carry him.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Sarah was tucked in her bed with a book. It had been a fun and relatively uneventful day. She spent most of it with Toby, making decorations or playing with his toys. While Irene wanted help in the kitchen, she was perfectly happy letting Sarah keep her brother occupied.

Looking up from her book, Sarah sighed. The room felt extremely empty without the Goblins and Jareth. She had asked all of them to remain at the castle until her family left. she would have enough chaos without them being there too, especially Jareth. Part of her wanted to have him show up and join them, but she already knew what Irene would assume. While she knew Jareth would be a perfect gentleman and probably win over her entire family, she wasn't ready to share him with anyone else.

Thinking of Jareth, she sighed. She was seriously debating calling for him. Maybe this whole stay away until Sunday thing was a bad idea. Just as she pushed her blanket off and started to stand, she heard a sound at the window. Glancing over, she smiled. “Just couldn't stay away could you?” She teased as she watched the barn owl. He flew in and landed on her bed. Slowly he walked towards her and sat his feathery little butt on her lap. Chuckling, Sarah gently patted his head. “So is this your compromise to the agreement to stay away?”

Jareth nuzzled her hand with his beak and let out a quiet "Whooo."

Picking him up gently, Sarah hugged him. “I have to admit that you are an adorable little owl.” she kissed the top of his feathered head. “Your feathers are really soft too.” She ran her fingers slowly over his wings. “While this is nice, I prefer your normal form.” She whispered hinting that she wanted him to change. Jareth understood what she wanted, but he was enjoying being cuddled by her far more than he should. “Do I have to say my right words to get you to change?”

Letting out a quiet “whooo,” Jareth moved down a little and changed into his true form. When the change was done, he was laying across her bed with his head resting on her lap. “Hello Precious.” He grinned up at her like the cat that ate the canary or in his case the owl that ate the cat.

“Hi.” She grinned as she ran her fingers through his hair. “Just couldn't wait until Sunday could you?”

“I'm sorry Sarah.” He reached up and cupped her cheek. “I tried. I really did, but I just couldn't sleep without seeing you for a bit. I thought staying as an owl would be acceptable. Then if anyone came in it wouldn't be that awkward why is there a strange yet incredibly gorgeous man in your room and on your bed.”

“You're not full of yourself tonight, are you?” She laughed lightly.

“Maybe just a little.” He smirked. They stared at each other for a few minutes and then they both started laughing.

“Oh, what am I gonna do with you?” She asked as she played with his hair.

“Oh, I could think of a few things.” He replied with a seductive grin. He gave her a wink and twirled strand of her hair around his finger. “So what were you reading Precious?”

“It’s called Much Ado About Nothing. It’s another play by Shakespeare.” Sarah replied.

“Sounds interesting.”

She nodded. “This and Midsummer Night's Dream are the only plays by Shakespeare that I truly enjoy.”

“The other is the one you were acting out at the park, correct?”

“Yea, I figured I should reacquaint myself with the stories in case you want me to do more.” She explained as she caressed his cheek.

“I'd love it if you did. I love watching you.” He placed his hand over hers and turned his head to kiss her palm. “You were magnificent last night. I was entranced by your performance.”

She ducked her head blushing from his praise. “All I did was recite a few lines that I probably remembered incorrectly.”

“Correct or not I'm very happy you recited them for me.”

Sarah started to reply buy quickly turned her head and brought hand up to cover her mouth as she yawned. “I should probably get some sleep. Tomorrow's going to be a busy day.”

Jareth sat up and turned to face her. “Yes you need to be fully rested to deal with your family.” Taking her hand in his Jareth gazed into her emerald eyes. “May I stay with you tonight?” When her eyes widened in surprise he added, “Just until you fall asleep. I'll even stay in my owl form if that would make you more comfortable.”

“Why the sudden urge to stay?” She inquired.

“It’s not really sudden Sarah. I’ve wanted to stay with you the entire time, but I knew you wouldn’t be comfortable with that at first. So I gave you time and space.” He caressed her knuckles with his thumb. “If you're still not comfortable with the idea I understand.”

“Its fine.” Sarah smiled. “Having a fluffy owl to cuddle should make falling asleep easier. You'll leave once I'm asleep?”

He nodded. “I may stay a little past that just to watch you for a bit, but I give you my word of honor I'll be a perfect gentleman and I'll stay in my owl form.”

“Alright, I trust you.” She leaned over and kissed his cheek. “Goodnight Jareth.”

He smiled and kissed her forehead. “Goodnight Precious.” He then changed into an owl and sat at the end of Sarah's bed.

Sarah put her book away, turned off the light and laid down. Once she pulled the covers over herself and got comfortable, she looked at Jareth. “Well come here.” Hooting happily, he walked over to her and quickly made himself comfortable against her stomach. Sarah wrapped an arm around him and pulled him close. “You're so warm.” She said sleepily.

It didn't take long for Sarah to fall asleep. Jareth enjoyed being wrapped in her arms, even if he was an owl. He watched her sleep for a couple of hours and then felt himself beginning to drift off. He forced himself to leave the warmth of her embrace. He hopped up on the table and watched her for another moment before flying home. When he arrived back at the castle beyond the Goblin City, he went straight to bed and had the best night's sleep he'd had in a long time.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

While Jareth and Sarah were sleeping peacefully, High Queen Ta'leena was pacing in her throne room. Alastair's report did little to enlighten her as to what caused the change in Jareth's attitude. In fact he claimed to see no difference in the way the Goblin King behaved. “Jareth has changed. I know he has.” She said to herself.

“You called for me Highness?”

Ta'leena turned to see Jaxel kneeling before her. “Jaxel, good you've returned. I'm in need of you. Jareth is up to something and I want to know what it is.”

Jaxel stood and watched the High Queen pace. “You said he's changed. How so?”

Ta'leena told him of what happened the day of the court meeting. “He never would have acted like that before. It worries me.”

“Jareth has always been a stubborn, independent, and wild Fae. Why should him acting out again be a surprise?”

“He was like this before he ran the Labyrinth and abandoned the court.” Ta'leena stated. “I worry what he intends to do now.”

“Do you think he would go against you my Queen?” Jaxel inquired.

“I honestly don't know Jaxel, and that's what worries me most.” She sighed and sat on her throne. “Please, I need you to deal with him.”

Jaxel thought a moment. “I have a better idea. Instead of me dealing with him, I propose we leave him to Heidi.”

Ta'leena thought it over. “Are you suggesting an arranged marriage?”

“I am.” Jaxel grinned. “Heidi can keep him under control as his Queen much better than either of us could ever hope to do.”

Grinning, Ta'leena started laughing. “Yes, yes. A marvelous plan my boy. I trust you to see to all the details.”

“All I need do is act as chaperone for Heidi and draw up the marriage agreement. She will be the one doing all the work.” Jaxel explained. “Getting Jareth to agree will be the hard part, but I'm certain she can convince him one way or another.” He grinned.

Ta'leena stood. “Come let's find the girl and explain her part in our plan.” Arm in arm they left the throne room to begin putting their plan into action.

Chapter Text

Sarah was up bright and early the next morning to help Irene with the last minute food preparations. Robert was keeping Toby busy in the living room and answering the door as the guest arrived. By noon the house was filled with family from all over, including Sarah’s Aunt Julie who flew in all the way from California. The day went by fast and soon the food was ready and everyone sat down to eat. Sarah's grandmother said grace and then Robert carved the turkey. When the plates were filled and everyone began to eat, Uncle James began the family ritual of embarrassing the grandkids. This year he started with Toby, who was busy digging into the mashed potatoes.

“So Toby I hear you’re the teacher’s pet at your daycare. Do you have a crush on the teacher or something?” The adults chuckled and waited for his reply.

“What a crush?” Toby asked before shoving turkey in his mouth.

“It means you like her.” Sarah informed him as she wiped gravy from his mouth and chin.

Toby swallowed and thought about it. “She's okay, but I just do what she says because Sarah gets mad at me if Mrs. Brown isn't happy with me. So I do what she says so Sarah will be happy and play games with me.” He grinned

“What are you going to do next year when Sarah's gone?” Aunt Ethel asked.

“Where’s Sarah going?” Toby asked.

“Sarah will be off to college my boy.” Uncle James replied.

“Sarah!” He turned to her with tears in his eyes.

“It's all right Tobes. I'm not leaving forever. We'll talk about it later okay bud?” She tried to calm him down before it became a full-blown meltdown.

“Sarah is all grown up Toby. Its time for her to find her own path, meet someone, get married, and have a family of her own.”

“You want a new family Sarah?”

She sighed Irene just couldn't leave well enough alone. “No that's not what she's saying Tobes. We will talk about it later okay?” She grabbed his little hand and squeezed it. Toby nodded and after Sarah wiped his face for him he returned to shoving food into his mouth.

Sarah's grandmother chuckled. “You already have the makings of an excellent mother my dear.” She patted her granddaughter's hand. “One day some boy is going to be very lucky to have you.”

“I don't know about that Nanny.” Sarah ducked her head.

“You'll see one day a handsome prince will stroll into your life and want to sweep you off your feet.” the older woman grinned.

I don’t know about a prince but I know a certain King that would happily sweep me off my feet. Sarah thought to herself. Thinking of Jareth, she couldn't keep the grin from spreading across her face.

Seeing the grin, her aunt Lisa decided to pry. “You’ve already found your prince haven’t you?”
Irene turned to stare at Sarah. “Is that true?”

Sighing, Sarah shook her head. “He's not a Prince and he's just a friend.”

“For now.” Robert grinned.

“Daddy!” She turned beet red.

“Who is this boy and why haven't I heard of him or met him?” Irene demanded.

“Irene…” Robert tried to argue but she cut him off.

“Have you met this boy? Who are his parents? Where does he live?” She glared at Sarah and waited for her answer.

“Relax Irene.” Sarah's grandmother stated firmly. “Sarah is a responsible girl so I'm sure he's a good boy.”

“Then why hasn't she brought him to meet us?” Irene demanded. A look of horror crossed her face as she had an idea. “He’s not black is he?”

“What?” Sarah was shocked that she would even ask such a thing.

“I know that one girl you hang out with is dating a black boy, and its rumored a couple of your so called friends are gay.” Irene shook her head. “Why can't you hang out with better kids? Like a Catherine's girl. She's head cheerleader and is going to Stanford next year.”

“She's also slept with the entire football team if you believe the rumors.” Sarah blurted out before she could stop herself.

“Sarah Lynn Williams!” Irene was on her feet and headed around the table. “You will never speak such lies about a decent respectable girl.”

“I said if you believe the rumors.” Sarah was also standing. “You just bad mouthed my friends based on rumors that you've heard. I simply pointed out there are rumors about Kay as well. I never said it was true or false. You don't even try to get to know my friends. All you care about is their family’s social status. That's why I didn't tell you about Jareth or have you meet him. You would have probably told me not to see him and that he's a player and that he's no good. You act like this with my friends so why would I even consider bringing a boyfriend to meet you?” Sarah turned to run to her room, intent on calling for Jareth to get her out of there, but she collided with her grandmother who wrapped her in a tight hug.

“Its alright child.” She patted Sarah's back as she sobbed on her grandmother shoulder. “Irene you truly are a bitch.” Irene's mouth opened but nothing came out. “I don't know what my son sees in you, but I kept my mouth shut when he decided to marry you. I know you don't think Sarah is a good girl but she is, and I will not let you treat her like trash.”

James stood, pulled his handkerchief out, and handed it to Sarah. She took it and mumbled a quiet “Thank you.”

“Come on Sarah. Let's go in the other room and have a chat.” Sarah nodded and followed her grandmother to the Livingroom. Robert started to follow them but his mother told him and the other to sit down and finish eating.

In the living room, Sarah sat on the couch and wiped her eyes. “Thanks Nanny.”

Her grandmother sat beside her and wrapped her arm around Sarah's shoulders. “I know living with her isn't easy.”

Sarah shrugged. “She's only like this in front of others. She tries to be almighty and in control. Any other time she could care less what I do as long as I babysit Toby when needed.”

“Toby's lucky to have you.” She smiled. “So tell me about…. Jared was it?”

Chuckling, Sarah ducked her head. “It's Jareth.”

“Jareth, that's an unusual name. I like it. So what's this friend of yours like?”

“Well he's…” Sarah hesitated shaking her head. “Jareth is hard to describe.”

“Well I trust he has manners.”

Sarah nodded. “Yes, he's a perfect gentleman. He pulls out chairs, open doors, even bows on occasion.”

“Very good.” Her grandmother smiled. “Is he cute?”

“Nanny!” Sarah started blushing.

“Well I believe I have my answer to that.” She chuckled. Patting Sarah’s knee she asked, “Does he treat you alright?”

“He treats me like an equal and goes out of his way to do things for me.”

“Sounds like quiet a guy.”

Nodding, Sarah smiled. “Yea he is.”

“I'd love to meet him one day.”

“You will Nanny. I definitely want to introduce him to you, Daddy, and Toby.”

“And Irene?” Her grandmother inquired.

“I suppose he'll have to meet her. Not looking forward to that, but knowing him he'll win her over like he does everyone else.” Sarah answered.

“Perhaps. Does he live close by?”

“Not really. He can come and visit, but his home is a good distance away.” Without thinking, Sarah hand started playing with the medallion around her neck.

“A gift from him?”

Sarah nodded. “Yeah, he has one just like it.” She held it out for her grandmother to see.

“Very beautiful. Does the symbol mean anything?”

“It's going to sound silly, but it's the seal of a fairy tale king in a book I read as a child.” Sarah explained.

“And I take it he read this book too?” Sarah nodded. “Interesting.” Her grandmother stood and held her hand out to her. “Come on lets go have dessert. I brought two German chocolate cakes with me.”
Sarah took her grandmothers hand and return to the kitchen. The rest of dinner was quiet other than Toby getting excited about Nanny's homemade cakes.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Meanwhile Jareth was practically prancing around the castle. His day was relatively quiet and even the goblins were in a good mood. After finishing his work for the day, he went to his study to start making plans for Yule. He couldn't wait to share this secret winter home with Sarah. He knew she probably wasn't that familiar with Yule traditions, but he didn't mind having a Christmas celebration for her. After all, many of the modern customs came from the ancient ones that were still practiced in the Underground. He just needed to know which ones Sarah and her family took part in and how it was done for Christmas.

“Sarah’s goblins to my study!” He shouted. A moment later his door open slowly and five goblins made their way inside. “Ah, good I have a few questions for you.”

“We in troubles Kingy?” Flower asked.

“No, no, no. I just need information on things Sarah does for Christmas.” The King replied with a smile.

“Christmas fun!” Patch shouted.

“Lady makes tasty treats and give us gifts.” Dusty added.

“What kind of decorations does she put up?” Jareth asked as he steepled his hands in front of his face.

“There's a big tree with pretty lights.” Flower answered.

“And big socks by the fire.” Patch added.

“Lady also mentioned some kind of toes that can be hung.” Cam said softly.

“Hanging toes?” Jareth was truly confused by that one.

“She says it's a plant you kissy under.” Cam explained.

“A plant you kiss under.” Jareth smirked “I believe you mean mistletoe and yes we will definitely need lots of that.”

Jareth spent the next hour talking with the goblins and making plans for their Yule/Christmas celebration.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Several hours later Jaxel, Alastair, and Heidi stood at the gate to the Labyrinth. “Hope you two are up for a long walk. That horrible dwarf that works for Jareth is paid to take us the long way.” Alastair complained.

“Jareth will drop the barrier for me.” Jaxel said firmly.

“If you say so.” Alastair paced in front of the gate. “I still say this is a bad idea. Jareth will never agree to it.”

“Then why did you come with us?” Jaxel spat.

“I want to see him kick your ass out of here and then again later if you keep trying to force this issue.” Alastair grinned.

“Are you saying Jareth would refuse me?” Heidi asked.

“Quite possible, but then my cousin is unpredictable.” Alastair banged on the door again. “Jareth!”

“The King ain't here.” A gruff voice called from behind them.

“What?” Jaxel turned to glare at the dwarf.

Hoggle put his hands on his hips and glared back. “I said the King ain't here. He flew off couple hours ago, and said he wouldn't be back til tomorrow.”

“Where did he go?” Jaxel demanded.

Shrugging, Hoggle looked at the three Fae. “He didn't say.”

“Well I guess we'll come back.” Alastair said as he turned to leave.

“No, this creature is going to show us to the castle and we'll remain until he returns.” Jaxel stated firmly.

“No can do.” Hoggle grinned. He loved turning these arrogant Fae away, it was the best part of his job. “No body goes in without the King's permission and he said ain’t no one allowed in until he returns.”

“Do you know who I am?” Jaxel asked as he stood tall and puffed his chest out.

“Nope and I don't care either.” Hoggle replied as he tried not to laugh. “But I follows the orders of the King and no body else other than the champion.”

“Not even the Queen?” Heidi asked

“We ain't gots one yet. When the King marries her, I'll obey her too, but the last I heards he had a long way to go before we starts preparing for a wedding.” Hoggle responded.

“Champion? You mean the human?” Jaxel asked.

“The Lady Sarah.” Hoggle glared at him. “By laws of the Labyrinth she's second only to the King. We obeys her because she won the game.”

“There's a human here?” Alastair asked.

“No, but ifs our lady was to return we’d be at her service.” Hoggle turned to leave. “Comes back tomorrow if you wants to see the King.”

“Stop!” Jaxel ordered, but Hoggle kept walking.

“As your future Queen, I order you to stop!” Heidi called.

Hoggle stopped and turned back to them laughing. “You...the queen?” He doubled over laughing.

“I wouldn't laugh if I were you.” Jaxel smirked. “By order of the High Queen, Jareth the Goblin King is officially betrothed to Lady Heidi. She will be your Queen.”

Hoggle stood up straight. “Never. Jareth will never agree to that. Besides he's already picked our Queen. We are just waiting for her to gets here.”

“Who?” Alastair inquired.

“You’ll has to ask the King when he comes back tomorrow.” Hoggle grinned and left the three at the gate.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Jareth returned to the castle earlier than expected. He had flown to his winter home to start preparations for Sarah's visit. It was going a lot quicker than he had expected and he was certain she would love visiting. While he still needed more decorations, mainly more mistletoe, his main worry at the moment was what to give her as a gift.

When he arrived in the throne room, he was surprised to find Hoggle and a hoard of goblins. “Kingy!” The goblins screamed before scattering.

“Stop!” He ordered and everyone froze. “What is going on?” He put his hands on his hips and looked around. “Well...”

“Dwarf tells us about visitors and future Queenie.” Flower told him.

“Future Queen?” Jareth turned his attention to Hoggle. “Oh Hoggle…”

“Ye…yes your majesty?” Hoggle was trying to hide. He knew he was in real trouble when Jareth remembered his name correctly.

“Just who were our visitors?” Jareth began to tap his foot impatiently.

“Your cousin and two other Fae your highness. They claimed the female with them was our future Queen by order of the High Queen.” Hoggle answered as calmly as he could.

“By order... well, we shall see about that.” Jareth mumbled as he walked around, hand on his chin. “No idea who the other two were?”

“No sire. The other male Fae looked a lot like you though.”

“Jaxel….” He spat the name. “I should have known.” Jareth frowned and looked to Hoggle. “I assume you sent them away?”

“Of course I knows better than to lets them in when you's not here."

“Well at least you did that correctly.” Jareth mumbled. “What did you tell our visitors?”

“I tolds them to come back tomorrow because you was gone.”

Jareth pinched the bridge of his nose. “So I can expect them to return.” He sighed. “I suppose a trip by the bog is in order. That may make our supposed Queen to be reconsider.” He smirked and the goblins giggled.

“Uh... I may have said you already picked a Queen.” Hoggle said quietly and the whole room froze and was silent.

“YOU DID WHAT?!” The Goblins that hadn’t made an escape earlier, did so now. Jareth grabbed Hoggle by the throat and slammed him against the nearest wall. “You told them about Sarah?!”

“No… not specifically. I just said you had already picked a queen and we was waiting for her to gets here.” Hoggle quickly explained.

Jareth dropped him and began pacing the room. “Fool, it won't take them long to realize its Sarah.” He grabbed Hoggle by the ear. “I should bog you, but that doesn't seem harsh enough. You may have just put Sarah in danger.”

“What?”

“The High Queen believes someone or something is affecting my judgement lately. We both know there's only one person able to do that.” Jareth told him as he paced.

“Sarah….”

“Yes, only Sarah can make me feel so great and cause me to actually stand up to the High Queen.” Jareth ran his fingers through his hair.

“That's a good thing though... ain’t it?”

“For me it's a wonderful thing, but it seems Ta'leena doesn’t agree. She wants to eliminate whatever it is that changed me.”

“Eliminate?!” Hoggle nearly fell over.

“Yes, so now they will figure out the cause of my change is my chosen Queen and start hunting for her.” Jareth flopped onto his throne.

“We has to warn Sarah.” Hoggle turned to leave.

“You will do no such thing! I will keep her safe.” Jareth barked, causing Hoggle to stop and turn back to the King.

“How? You can't be with her all the time and she won't stays here all the time.”

“She has her five goblins and I'll assign more guards to look after her.” Jareth sighed. “What in the world made you say that anyway?”

“I... I didn't likes her trying to push in here and takes over. We all knows its Sarah you wants for your Queen. We wants her here too and the idea of you taking another for Queen ain't right. High Queen or not we don't wants her dictating who rules us.” Hoggle said calmly as he stared at the floor.

Jareth sat forward and gave a slight smile. “Well, well, Higgle…”

“Hoggle.” He corrected in a soft voice.

“Whatever.” Jareth smirked. “I'm a little impressed.”

“You…you are?”

“Yes.” Jareth stood. “Your choice of words was poor, but you stood up to the Crown Prince of the High Court and lived to tell about it.”

“Crown Prince?!”

“Yes, Hoggle if your description is accurate, that was Jaxel the Crown Prince, my cousin Alastair, and who knows what high ranking lady they chose to be my supposed betrothed.

“I ain't never seen her before.” Hoggle offered.

“Not surprising. It's not like the ladies of the court are trying to knock down my door.” Jareth sighed and turned to look at Hoggle. “From now on, if I'm not here and we have guests just let them sit outside. They will either leave or be in a wonderful mood when I do return. Am I clear?” Jareth asked.

Hoggle nodded. “Yes sir.”

Jareth stood and summoned a crystal to check on Sarah. He smiled slightly seeing that she was happily eating a rather large slice of cake, occasionally stopping to say something to Toby. With a flick of his wrist the crystal vanished. “Where are Sarah's Goblins?”

Sarah's goblin five slowly peeked in the throne room. “We here Kingy.” Flower called from the doorway.

Jareth sat back on his throne. “Come here. Your assistance is required.”

They approached the King slowly. “What we do Kingy?” Dusty asked.

“I know Sarah asked us to stay away until Sunday, but I need you to go and stay with her at all times. Stay out of sight and report to me if you see anything out of place.”

“Lady in danger?” Cam asked.

“She could be. The High Queen may be looking for her and I'm not sure what she'll do if she finds our Sarah.” Jareth told them.

“Don’t worrys Kingy. We keeps Lady safe.” Dusty proclaimed.

“Yeah we not lets mean big Queenie hurts Lady.” Patch added.

“Very good.” The King smiled. “You four go on to Sarah's. Cam I have another task for you.” When the other four disappeared, Jareth turned to Cam. “I need you to find Vol'sun.”
Cam cowered before the King. “Not scary troll, Kingy.”

“Relax little one. He only looks scary. He and his troops are no threat to you or any of my subjects.” Jareth assured him. “His assistance is needed though.”
Cam nodded. “Okay Kingy. I finds troll.”

“Thank you Cam. Tell him it is important and that I need to see him immediately. Cam nodded again and took off. Jareth turned his attention back to Hoggle. “Well Hogwort, since you caused this trouble I'm going to make you help fix it.”

“Wha…what am I going to do?” Hoggle stammered.

“You shall help keep an eye on our Sarah. I'm going to change you into an animal and you're going to remain in the aboveground until I say you can return.” Jareth said as he stood and summoned a crystal.

Hoggle started backing up. “What kind of animal?”

“Hmm… that’s a good question. Needs to be something small so you can stay hidden.” He said as he juggled the crystal. He stopped and grinned as he got an idea. “I know I will turn you in to the very creature you're so fond of referring to me as. He threw the crystal and laughed when the transformation was complete. “Perfect.”

Chapter Text

Jaxel sat by the fire in the small office he had at Ta’leena’s castle. As he stared at the dancing flames, he thought about what the dwarf had said. “He’s already chosen a Queen. We are awaiting her arrival.” Had Jareth truly chosen his Queen? Perhaps that was the cause of his sudden behavior change. It made sense, after all, Jaxel was attempting to marry him off in order to keep him in line. He knew exactly how a woman’s influence could change a man.

“Are you still in here brooding?” Alastair called from the door. “I swear, you’re almost as bad as Jareth.”

Jaxel looked up at him. “Not sure if that is a compliment or an insult.”

Alastair shrugged. “Perhaps a bit of both.” He walked over and sat in the chair by Jaxel. “You still planning to go through with this marriage thing?”

Jaxel sighed. “I don’t know. If Jareth truly has found his Queen, then I’m happy for him. If would also explain the change in his behavior. You spoke with him. How did he seem?”

“Honestly, he was happier than I’ve seen him in a long time. He smiled and laughed more in the short time I was there, than he has in the last 1,000 years. If his new lady is the cause I say good for him. He deserves to be happy and we shouldn’t interfere.” Alastair said.

“But mother…”

“Auntie will have to accept his decision or risk war.” Alastair interrupted. “You know as well as I do that Jareth won’t give her up just because the High Queen said to.”

“But who is she?” Jaxel asked. “Surely someone would have heard or seen something if he was courting a lady of the court.”

His cousin smiled. “Not if she’s not part of the court.”

“Are you suggesting that the future Goblin Queen is a commoner?” Jaxel inquired.

Before Alastair could reply, a laugh at the door startled them both. They looked to see Heidi in her usual attire, which was similar to riding clothes and, as was normal for her, they were covered in dirt. “Jareth marry a commoner? Absurd. He’s too vain for that. I don’t care what that horrid little dwarf said, I will be Queen. Jareth won’t refuse me. You’ll see.”

“If he sees you dressed like that he will.” Jaxel spat. “Why do you insist on dressing like that? No wonder you’re still single.”

“Jareth will see me as an equal. I can fight as well as him and my skill with a bow is unmatched. Beauty isn’t everything, especially if I’m to rule over those filthy goblins. I’ll have to show them I’m strong enough to lead them. As for Jareth,” she paused and smirked, “he’ll forget all about his supposed chosen Queen when I’m done with him.”

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

After dessert, Sarah took a walk with Toby and her Nanny. Their grandmother told them that she planned on asking their parents if she could keep them both for the entire winter break. Toby was thrilled and couldn’t wait. Sarah on the other hand was hesitant. She had hoped to visit the Underground during her break, even it was just for a day or two. Noticing her granddaughter biting her lower lip, she stopped walking and turned to Sarah. “What’s wrong dear? I thought you’d be thrilled?”

Toby turned and looked at his sister. “Sarah?”

“I’m alright, Tobes.” She sighed. “Its just a friend invited me to go with them for a few days over winter break. I was trying to figure out what to tell Daddy and Irene.”

Her grandmother grinned. “Would this be the same friend we discussed earlier?” Sarah nodded, blushing slightly. “Well I don’t see an issue. You’re a grown woman now, even if Irene doesn’t agree. I’ll talk to them about you staying with me and once you’re at my place you can leave with your friend, on one condition.”

“What’s the condition Nanny?”

“I want to meet him.” She smirked.

Smiling, Sarah nodded. “Deal.”

“Now Toby…” their grandmother turned to the boy.

“I know, not a word to mom and dad.” He smiled. “Can I meet him too, Sarah?”

“We’ll see Tobes.” Sarah patted his head.

When they returned from their walk, most of the family has already left for the night. Only Sarah’s grandmother and her aunt Lisa were staying at the house. The rest of the family was either staying at a hotel or returning home. After a brief goodnight to those still in the house, Sarah hurried to her room hoping to avoid Irene.

In the safety of her room, Sarah locked the door and collapsed on the bed. Hearing a hooting sound at the window, she looked up to see the familiar barn owl at the window. She quickly got up and opened the window to let him in. Jareth flew to her bed and sat on her pillow. Sarah closed the window and chuckled at where he decided to sit. He watched her as she walked over to the bookshelf and turned on her stereo. “There that should prevent them from hearing us.” Jareth tilted his head and stared at her. As soon as she sat back on the bed, he hopped onto her lap. “You can change Jareth. Actually I’d prefer it if you did. I need to talk to you.”

With a quiet “Whoo” he hopped beside her and changed. “Is everything alright Precious?” He was stretched out beside her, his head resting on a pillow.

Sarah laid beside him and wrapped her arms around him, her head laying on his chest. “I almost called for you earlier.”

Her actions surprised him, but he simply wrapped his arms around her and held her close. “Why didn’t you? I would have been here in an instant.”

“Nanny grabbed me before I could get out of the room. She dealt with the issue.” She snuggled closer, her head now just below his chin.

“What issue?” Jareth asked as he rubbed soothing circles on her back.

“Irene.” She sighed. Glancing up, she found him looking at her with concerned eyes. “I don’t really want to talk about it at the moment, but I do have good news for you.” She stated as she looked away.

“Oh?”

“Yea, Nanny is going to talk to Daddy and Irene about letting Toby and I spending our entire winter break with her at her house.”

“I fail to see how that is good for me.” Jareth’s voice didn’t hide any of his disappointment.

Sarah smiled and looked up at him. “You can stop your pouting because it is very good for you. Nanny is going to cover for me while I’m with you.”

A big grin appeared on his face. “Your grandmother is letting you go elsewhere while claiming you’re at her house?”

“She knows I’m going somewhere with you. She said I’m an adult and free to do as I please.” Sarah explained. “She does have one condition though.”

“And that is…”

“Nanny wants to meet you.”

“Really?” He smirked. “And just what have you told her about me?”

“Not much really. She knows you’re a dear friend that I enjoy spending time with.” Sarah replied. “She knows you gave me this.” She said as she grabbed her medallion. “And that you have one just like it.”

Jareth nodded and kissed the top of her head. “I’d be honored to meet your grandmother. Just say when and I’ll be there.”

Before Sarah could reply there was a banging on her door. “Sarah! I know you’re in there! Open this door young lady!”

“Why can’t she just leave me alone?” Sarah groaned.

Jareth chuckled. “See what she wants. I’ll stay hidden.”

Sarah got up and walked to her door. Glancing behind her she was a little surprised to see Jareth was already gone. Sighing, she unlocked and opened her door. “Yes Irene?”

“Why was this door locked?” Irene demanded with her hands on her hips.

“Because I wanted to be left alone for a while and then I was going to bed. I always lock my door at night, otherwise Toby has a habit of coming in and crawling into bed with me.” Sarah explained. That was the original reason she had started locking the door at night, now it was to prevent anyone from walking in and seeing Jareth and/or the goblins.

“Well not anymore.” Irene said matter of factly. “From now on this door will remain unlocked and you will only close you door if you’re changing or in bed.”

“What? That’s not fair!” Sarah blurted before she could stop herself.

“Neither was your little outburst at dinner.” Irene replied. “Plus we have to make sure you’re not sneaking out to see that boy.”

Sarah’s hands balled into fists at her sides. “I wish…” She caught herself before the words were fully out of her mouth. She knew the dangers of making wishes, especially with the Goblin King hiding somewhere in her room.

“What? Go on, say it.” Irene pushed. “What do you wish?”

Sarah bit her lip and thought carefully. “I wish you would back off and leave me alone.” She prayed Jareth wouldn’t do anything extreme with her words.

“Irene.”

Sarah and Irene turned to see Robert at the top of the stairs. “Ah Robert, good you can help me talk some sense into this girl.”

“Leave her alone Irene.” Robert said firmly. “Sarah is a grown woman now. I trust her decisions and if she wants her door locked at night that is her choice. You had no issue with it before today. In fact I think you’re just upset that my mother called you out on how you treat Sarah in front of everyone. You can do anything to her, so you’re punishing Sarah.” Robert walked over and pushed her away from his daughter. “You and I need to have a long talk.” He then turned to Sarah and gave her a gentle smile. “Go back to what you were doing sweetheart. Feel free to close and lock your door.” He hugged her and kissed her forehead. “Goodnight Princess.” He whispered.

“Goodnight Daddy.” She smiled at him and slowly closed and locked her door. The minute was closed, she heard her father ushering Irene down stairs. Sarah turned around and chuckled seeing Jareth stretched out on her bed once more.

“Just so you know, I had nothing to do with that. Your father beat me to granting your wish.” He gave her an amused look. “I’m surprised you made a wish. You’ve been so careful with your words since our first encounter.”

Sarah sat on the bed beside him. “I know, but she pushed me too far this time. I almost wished something else, but I knew better.” She turned to face him. “What were you going to do if Daddy hadn’t shown up?”

“Slip out the window and knock on the door.” Jareth grinned. “After that I was just going to wing it, but I figured a guest might get her to leave you alone.”

“So you’d throw yourself to the wolves for my sake?” Sarah laid on her side facing Jareth.

Grinning, he rolled onto his side to face her. “Gladly.” He caressed her cheek with a gloved hand. “So what boy is she worried about you sneaking out to see? Do I have competition?”

Sarah laughed lightly. “The boy she was talking about is the same one that has been sneaking into my room for the last month and is currently laying on my bed.” She grinned.

“Hmm I only see you and myself on your bed, Precious. So this boy must be really good at hiding.” Jareth teased.

Oh stop.” She smacked his arm playfully. “You good and well there’s only one male, that isn’t shorter than me, that is allowed in here.”

Jareth grabbed her hand and held it. “So this boy is tall and good at hide and seek.” He continued to tease. He knew she was talking about him, but he wanted to hear her say it.

“You are hopeless.” She shook her head laughing. “Since you obviously aren’t going to give up until I say it, yes we were talking about you. At dinner Nanny made a comment about me finding a boy and aunt Lisa saw me grin and asked if I had already found one. Irene then jumped my case about why she hadn’t heard about or met this boy.”

“Again with this boy stuff. Did they really say you’d find a boy?” Jareth questioned. “You’re a grown woman, yet they want you to find a boy, not a man. I fail to see their logic. You need a grown, charming, incredibly handsome, romantic, loving man to take care of your every need.” He gave her a seductive grin as he rubbed circles on the back of her hand with his thumb.

“Any idea where I can find such a man?” Sarah asked as she gazed into his eyes.

“Oh I know the perfect man for you.” Jareth replied as he leaned forward and kissed her forehead. “All you have to do it say the word and I’m all yours.”

Sarah turned her head and slowly rolled onto her back and stared at the ceiling. “And to answer your earlier question, Nanny didn’t exactly tell me to find a boy.”

“And what exactly did she say?” Jareth leaned closer and studied her face. When she didn’t answer, he place a finger under her chin and tilted her head towards him. “Sarah…”

“It’s not important.” She mumbled as she tried to look away.

Jareth refused to let her look away. “Allow me to be the judge of that. Now what was said?”

Sarah shook her head. “I won’t say.”

“Don’t defy me Sarah. You know you’re no match for me.” He challenged her with a teasing glint in his eye.

“I beat you once Goblin King.” She said confidently.

“Oh but I have other means of beating you at my disposal now dear Sarah.” He whispered.

“Such as…” She eyed him suspiciously.

“This.” Suddenly his hands were on her sides tickling furiously.

“No…fair!” she cried between laughs as she tried to fight him off.

“You say that so often. I wonder what your basis for comparison is.” He said as he continued tickling her. As she squirmed and laughed, Jareth couldn’t help but smile at how beautiful she was. When she tried to get up and run from him he grabbed her by the waist. “Oh no, you’re not getting away until you tell me what was said.” He held her with one arm and tickled with the other.

“Fine… I’ll tell…. just stop…” She laughed.

Jareth stop his assault and loosened his grip on her. “That’s a good girl.” He grinned.

After taking a moment to calm her laughter and catch her breath, Sarah sat up and turned to face him. “Nanny said one day a handsome Prince would stroll in and sweep me off my feet.”

“A Prince?” Jareth chuckled. “And that caused you to smile?”

Nodding, Sarah looked at her hands, which were playing with the edge of her shirt. “I thought that I haven’t seen a Prince, but I know a King that wants to sweep me off my feet.” She looked up to see Jareth giving her a gentle smile.

“Very true, Precious.” He said softly. Slowly he leaned over and kissed her cheek. “So how did you father react to the revelation that his Princess may have found a Prince?”

“Daddy didn’t help the situation.” Sarah covered her mouth as she as she realized what she said. She knew Jareth would be curious to know what was said and she started to blush.

“Hmm…seems your father made an interesting comment based on how red you’re turning.” He smirked. “Don’t worry, Sarah. You may keep that one to yourself.” He chuckled and caressed her cheek with the back of his hand. “I should go and let you rest. It sounds like you’ve had a very busy day.”

“Could you stay a little longer?” Sarah asked as she grabbed his hand and held it, their fingers laced together.

“Until you fall asleep?” He inquired.

“Please.”

Jareth smiled. “Of course Precious, although if you cuddle me like you did last night, I may stay an owl more often.”

“You don’t have to change, unless you want to.” Sarah said shyly.

“Oh?” He raised an eyebrow. “This is unexpected.”

“I’m not saying we can make this an every night occurrence, but I was hoping you’d rub my back, like you were earlier, for a while longer.” Sarah confessed.

“Ah, understood.” He nodded, pulled his hand from hers, and sat up. “I’m sure you’d like to change into your sleep clothes.”

“Yea, and I need to brush my teeth.” Sarah stood and grabbed her pjs from a drawer. “I’ll be right back.” She unlocked the door and hurried to the bathroom.

Once she was gone, the door closed behind her, Jareth sighed and sat on the bed. “Gods, does she have any idea what she does to me?”

“Kingy okay?” Flower asked as she poked her head out of the closet. Two more heads peaked out from under the bed and one from under the vanity.

“Were all of you here the whole time?” Jareth glared.

“Kingy, you tells us no to leaves Lady unless you tells us to. You no tells us to go.” Dusty explained.

Chuckling, Jareth shook his head. “True. Very good job on following orders. Hogwort, I assume you’re still here too?” A squeaking sound came from under the curtain by the window and a large brown rat came out of hiding. “Oh hush will you, Higgle.” Jareth stood and picked up the rat. “Stay hidden, we don’t want Sarah’s parents putting out traps for you.” The Goblin King grinned. “All of you are to keep watching Sarah tomorrow and if there’s anything you can do to make her step mother’s life difficult I encourage you to do so.”

The goblins giggled. “Sure thing Kingy.” Patch said.

“Good.” He placed Hoggle back on the floor. “Now back to your hiding spots before our Sarah returns.”

The goblins and Hoggle hid and Jareth removed his boots and laid on the bed. When Sarah returned she found Jareth stretched out on her bed, hands behind his head, eyes closed, and boots off. She closed and locked the door and stood at the foot of the bed. “Comfortable your Highness?”

Jareth opened one eye to look at her. “Reasonably. I could sleep on this bed, but the one in my private chambers is much better. Would you like to try it?” He smirked.

She shook her head. “Pervert.” She walked over to turn off the stereo.

His second eye opened and he gave her his best hurt expression. “Me? I was simply offering to let you sleep in my bed. I just want you to get your rest Precious.”

After turning off the stereo, Sarah turned off the light and laid on the bed bedside Jareth. “Uh huh, and I suppose you were going to sleep on the couch?”

The Goblin King rolled onto his side to face her. “Says the girl that asked me to stay with her on this tiny bed, in my true form, until she falls asleep. My bed is large enough that we could both lay sprawled out and never touch.”

“Why do you have a bed that large?” Sarah asked. Seeing his grin, she shook her head. “Never mind. I don’t want to know.”

Jareth laughed lightly. “Its not what you’re probably thinking Precious.” He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her close. “One, the previous King was a giant, so the room and furniture seem large to us. Two, while there are a great many things that could be attempted on a bed that large, I have never tried to perform any of them in my own chambers. In fact since I became King, no one besides a random goofy and extremely brave goblin, and myself have slept in that bed.”

“Really?”

“Yes, Precious. You’re the first and only woman I’ve ever invited to my bed, in any sense of the matter.” He kissed her forehead. “But all joking aside, if you would like to sleep at the castle, in my bed or one in one of the other rooms, all you have to do is say the word. I’ll make sure the goblins guard your room in case someone knocks on your door, and I’d have you back first thing in the morning.” Jareth offered.

She nodded and yawned. “Thanks Jareth. I think I’ll just stay right here tonight.” She snuggled closer and laid her head on his chest. “Goodnight Jareth.”

“Goodnight my Sarah.” He whispered as he rubbed gentle circles on her back. He watched her and hummed quietly. As she fell asleep, Jareth thought he saw her smile. “Sweet dreams my Queen.” He kissed her forehead and continued to rub her back. He laid there watching her after she was asleep, a gentle smile on his face.

As he held her in his arms, Jareth thought back on how the met, and how much she had grown since then. Even though he didn't want to leave, Jareth carefully moved Sarah’s head to her pillow and climbed off the bed. He pulled the blanket over her and brushed the hair from her face. “One day I’ll be able to remain by your side for the entire night and wake beside you. Then everyday will start off gloriously with your smiling face being the first thing I see.”

Reluctantly, he pulled his boots on, opened the window, changed into an owl and flew home. He was hoping to get a decent amount of sleep before Jaxel and Alastair returned with his supposed future bride, but sadly most of the night was spent tossing and turning.

Chapter Text

Next morning Sarah woke up bright and early, feeling fully rested and refreshed. She dressed and hurried downstairs to find her father in the kitchen having a cup of coffee and reading the paper. “Good morning, Daddy,” she greeted him cheerfully.

“Morning, Sarah.” He watched her practically dance around the kitchen as she fixed herself a bowl of cereal. “Someone’s in a really good mood this morning.” He grinned. “Something you want to tell me?”

Sarah shook her head. “No, I just slept really well last night.”

“Good dreams?” Robert asked.

She stopped and thought a moment. “Yea, I did have some good dreams actually.” She replied with a huge grin.

“Well your mood is going to get better. I had a long talk with Irene and your grandmother last night. You and Toby will be spending your entire break at your grandmother’s. Irene and I are going to go to Connecticut to visit her family.” Robert told her.

“How long will you be gone Daddy?”

“Leaving the day after we drop you off at your grandmother’s and we’ll be back the day after New Year’s. I already talked to mom about the Santa situation. She assured me that you would help her take care of Toby.” Robert informed her.

Sarah nodded. “Of course Daddy.” She sat and ate her cereal, anxious to talk to her grandmother about her trip with Jareth. With her father and Irene out of town for all of her break, it was up to her grandmother as to how long she could be gone, which if Jareth had his way would be the entire break. While it was tempting, Sarah didn’t want Toby to feel like she abandoned him, especially not at Christmas.

Glancing at the calendar while she ate, Sarah saw that break started when school let out early on the 20th and didn’t return until January 2nd. If she stayed at her grandmother’s until Christmas Day that would give her a week to spend with Jareth and then she’d get to spend part of Christmas and New Year with him.

After breakfast Sarah sat in the living room with Toby, who was playing with his toy cars. “Sarah.” He called from the floor.

“Yea Tobes?”

“Are we putting the tree up today?”

“No, we’re not.” Irene called from the doorway.

“No reason to.” Robert added.

“Why?” Toby inquired.

“Because you and Sarah are spending your entire winter break at my house.” Their grandmother spoke up.

“Really?” Toby’s eyes lit up. Sarah smiled at how surprised he seemed even though Nanny told them she was going to talk to their parents. Did he think Daddy and Irene were going to say no?

“Yes, it’ll be nice to get away. Your father and I are going to Aunt Marylyn’s for the holidays. We’ll be back the day after New Year’s.” Irene explained.

“Sarah would you mind going for a walk with me?” Her grandmother asked. “I’d like to see that park you told me about.”

“Can I go too?” Toby asked.

“Not this time Toby. I need to talk to Sarah about a few adult things.”

“I’m a big boy!” Toby protested.

“Yes you are.” Sarah laughed. “But how can we plan your Christmas gifts with you around?”

“Oh!” Toby nodded. “Okay. I want…”

“I know Tobes. I’ll give Nanny your list.” Sarah stood and ruffled his hair. “We’ll be back soon.” After grabbing their coats, Sarah and her grandmother headed to the park for a long talk about plans for winter break.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

When Jareth woke that morning, he was already in a foul mood. He’d barely gotten any sleep and the last thing he wanted to do was deal with Jaxel. Sighing, he made his way to his study to wait for their inevitable arrival.

He didn’t have to wait long. Soon a goblin ran in. “Kingy!”

“Yes?”

“Visitors at the gate.”

Jareth sighed. “Very well. Send the dwarf…” He paused as he realized that he left Hoggle with Sarah. “Send Sir Didymus to greet them. Tell the knight to give this,” he summoned a crystal and handed it to the goblin, “to my cousin Alastair.” When the goblin touched the crystal it turned into a letter. “And tell Sir Didymus to take them the long way and be sure to give them a good view of the bog.” The goblin nodded and rushed out.

Being curious about the identity of his supposed betrothed, Jareth glanced in a crystal at his visitors. “So they’ve chosen Heidi have they? Well this should be interesting.” He grinned evilly and waited for Didymus to arrive with his letter.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

At the gate, Alastair, Jaxel, and Heidi waited impatiently. “Jareth!” Alastair called as he banged on the gate.

“Why does he do this?” Heidi asked.

“Because he’s a stubborn prick.” Alastair sighed.

“Wouldn’t surprise me if he’s still in bed.” Jaxel commented.

“Well if it wasn’t for this stupid barrier, I could join him there and everything would be settled a lot quicker.” Heidi said with a smile.

“Alastair shook his head. “Do you think everything can be settled in bed?”

“Most things, yes.” She smirked.

Alastair sighed. “Where is that annoying dwarf?”

“If thou speaketh of Sir Hoggle, he is currently on a mission for our King.”

The three Fae turned to see a noble looking fox on the back of sheepdog. “Who are you?” Heidi demanded.

“Sir Didymus at your service my Lady.” He said as he bowed to them. “His majesty has asked that I lead you to the castle.”

“Good. Hopefully you’ll take us the direct way.” Alastair stated.

“There is but one way to the castle, but first which one of you is Lord Alastiar?” Didymus asked.

“I am.”

Didymus rode Ambrosias over to him and held out the letter. “The King asked that I give this to thee.”

Alastair took the letter and read it. “Well it seems I’m not wanted. Jareth says I’m to remain here while you follow the little knight to the castle.”

“So be it.” Jaxel stated. “Lead the way little knight.”

“Right this way.” Didymus lead them into the Labyrinth and towards the bog.

Sighing, Alastair paced around outside until they were out of site. “Alright Jareth. What’s going on?”

“I figured I’d spare you a another trip to the bog cousin.”

Turning towards the voice, Alastair saw Jareth leaning against a tree. “Have you been there long?”

Jareth smirked as he pushed off the tree and walked towards his cousin. “Long enough to hear a few interesting things. Come on let’s wait for the others at the castle” Jareth placed a hand on Alastair’s shoulder and suddenly they were in his study.

“So even your little knight is paid to take people the long way?” Alastair questioned.

“Depends on the visitor.” Jareth answered.

“I knew it! There is a direct path to the castle!” he exclaimed.

“Of course there is.” Jareth laughed as he sat at his desk. “Now what is this I hear of the High Queen attempting to marry me off?”

“I’ll tell you all about her scheme.” Alastair grinned. “After you tell me about your chosen Queen.”

Jareth sighed. “I really should bog that dwarf.”

“Oh come now Jareth. He seems very loyal to you and this Champion. Tell me, is she the one that’s stolen your heart?”

Smiling, Jareth nodded. “Yes. She is the Champion of the Labyrinth and my heart. When she beat the Labyrinth I offered everything, but she rejected me.”

“So what has changed?” Alastair inquired. “The dwarf made it sound as if you were engaged and marrying her soon.”

“It’s not that simple.” Jareth chuckled. “She’s back in my life, but we’re just friends at the moment. I agreed to take things slow. She wishes to get to know one another and see where it goes from there.”

“Does she know how you feel?”

“Oh yes, I made sure my intentions were very clear this time. She knows I want her here as my wife and Queen. I’m not rushing or pushing her though. I waited three years to see her again, I can wait for her to make up her mind.” Jareth stood and walked to the window. “Now you know my secret. Sarah is the reason for my change. If the High Queen finds her, I fear what she may do.” He turned to face his cousin. “Now tell me of Ta’leena’s plans.”

Alastair sighed. “Well first, you should know its Jaxel’s plan.” Jareth started to protest, but Alastair stopped him. “Now before you go on the war path, he didn’t know about your Champion. Sarah was her name, correct?”

Jareth nodded. “Yes my Sarah,” he smiled slightly, “though I ask you keep that to yourself. I don’t want any in the court knowing Sarah is the one I’ve chosen as my Queen. I knew she may be in danger before, but now…”

“Ta’leena doesn’t know you’ve chosen a bride, at least not that I’m aware of. She only informed me to look into the location of your Champion. She found it very odd that you named her at last. Jaxel was having second thoughts about this marriage idea last night. Sadly Heidi is set on being your bride now. She’s convinced that she can make you forget about Sarah, and I worry she may try to eliminate the competition if needed.” Alastair explained. “The plan was to have you marry Heidi so that she could keep you in line.”

Jareth scoffed. “Like I would ever agree to marry her.” He shook his head. “No, Sarah ruined me years ago. I vowed then it would be her or no one and I meant it. After her no other woman comes close.” He ran his hand through his hair. “So Jaxel doesn’t sound like he’ll need much convincing to drop this silly idea. Heidi is the issue. It appears I was correct in having my little spy find Vol’Sun. Isn’t that right?” Jareth looked to a dark corner of the room and Alastair looked as well.

At first he saw nothing, but then he saw a shadowy figure appear. “So de mighty Goblin King haz lost iz heart.” The shadow laughed. “For diz ye calls me?”

Jareth laughed. “No old one. My heart is safe. My beloved has it. I called you to help me protect the keeper of my heart.”

Vol’sun stepped into the light and Alastair’s mouth hung open when he realized his cousin had called for an ancient Troll. “Ye best be closing ye mouth young one. Less ye be trying to catch flies.” Vol’Sun laughed and Jareth walked over and embraced him. “Good to see ye again Dream Master.”

“Its good to see you as well, Vol’Sun. Its been far too long.” Jareth guided him to a chair and helped him sit.

“Pardon me if I sound rude and ignorant, but how is he going to help?” Alastair asked.

Smirking, Jareth sat on the edge of his desk. “Vol’Sun is the best witch doctor in the Underground and one of the few Trolls that still follows the old ways.”

Vol’Sun gave Alastair a toothy grin. “Who ye dink teach ole Jareth about de power of voodoo?”

“And let’s not forget about showing me how to manipulate dreams, that has been very useful to me.” Jareth added.

“Now Jareth, how bout ye be telling me bout de future Goblin Queen?”

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Several hours later, after a long and detailed tour of the Bog of Eternal Stench, Jaxel and Heidi reached the castle, both looking a little worse for wear. “Ah, at last we’ve reached the castle. I’m sure his majesty is waiting for thee inside.” Sir Didymus said as he bowed to them.

When he was gone, Jaxel turned to Heidi. “I believe Alastair is correct about Jareth paying his servants to take us the long way.”

“When I’m Queen that bog is the first thing to go.” Heidi grumbled.

“Well, let’s find Jareth and get this over with.” Jaxel said as he offered his arm to Heidi. Nodding she took his arm and they made their way into the castle.

They found Jareth sitting on his throne, his hands steepled in front of his face. “Hello Jaxel.” He greeted the Crown Prince.

Jaxel gave a smug grin. “Hello little brother. Long time no see.”

“Not long enough if you ask me. But few rarely do ask my opinion on things, such as the decision of me getting married. I hear you and mother have chosen a bride for me.” Jareth said with a glare.

“Yes. Its about time you took a wife and produced an heir.” Jaxel responded. “I believe you know Lady Heidi.”

Heidi stepped forward and gave Jareth what he assumed was meant to be a seductive grin. “Hello Jareth.”

Jareth sighed. “Hello Heidi. I find it hard to believe you went along with this.”

“Why is that?” she asked.

“You’re not exactly the marrying type.” Jareth answered. “Nor do I see you enjoying spending your days surrounded by goblins.”

“Not the marrying type?” Heidi laughed. “You’re one to talk. The Jareth I remember used to dream of lazy days on a secluded beach with a harem of women waiting on him.”

“Things change.” Jareth said as he stood. “I’m not the same ignorant boy you knew long ago. I’ve grown up, have a kingdom to run, and a Queen to please.”

“Oh Jareth, you’ve never displeased…”

“I wasn’t talking about you.” He interrupted her. “I have already chosen my Queen and she is greatly loved by myself and my subjects. I’d be a fool to toss her aside just because the High Queen sends you to be my bride.”

“Mother was unaware of your intention to marry. You failed to make it publicly known that you’re engaged.” Jaxel scolded.

“I shall make it publicly known when my Queen is here by my side, where I can protect her from any threats. Although I’m certain the entire court will know by the end of the week if they don’t already.” Jareth grumbled.

“And just who is this woman that has you so infatuated my dear brother?” Jaxel asked.

“A beautiful creature with more grace than any Lady I’ve ever seen.” Alastair cut in as he and Vol’Sun entered the room.

“Cousin, I thought you had to wait outside?” Jaxel glared at him.

“Oh no, Jareth simply asked me to wait until you two were gone so that he could fetch me directly.” Alastair grinned at the death glares that both Jaxel and Heidi were sending in his direction. “I’ve been having a marvelous time chatting with Vol’Sun here and learning about the future Goblin Queen.” He walked over and patted Jareth on the back. “I can see why you are so devoted to her. She’s an angel. Such tenderness when dealing with that child and the goblins. She’ll make a fine Queen and mother someday, though knowing you it won’t be long before she’s with child.”

“Wait, you’ve met her?” Heidi inquired.

“Heavens no. Jareth hasn’t given me that honor yet.” Alastair replied. “Vol’Sun and I were watching her in one of Jareth’s little crystals. She truly cares for her goblins, just as you said Jareth.”

Jareth smiled. “Yes, my lady is quite remarkable…” He paused. “Wait, she was with her goblins?”

Alastair nodded. “Yes she hugged and talked to them. She even hugged that old rat in her room. She loves all creatures equally it seems.”

“Rat?” Jareth swallowed and turned his back on the group. Summoning a crystal he checked on Sarah. She was sitting on her bed watching the goblins play a board game on the floor. Sitting on her lap was Hoggle, still in rat form. He made the crystal vanish and turned back to the others. “Its time for all of you to leave.” He said firmly.

“What?” Heidi looked horrified.

“I have business to attend to.” Jareth replied. “Leave. Now.” His voice was full of venom. “Vol’Sun see that they leave, by force if needed.”

“Cousin?” Alastair looked at him, eyes full of concern.

“We’ll talk later Alastair.” Jareth turned to the window.

“Wait, Jareth. What is going on?” Jaxel demanded.

“Thanks to your idiotic plan, I may have a very pissed off lady on my hands. I will not screw this up, not this time. So if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to see my Queen.” Jareth turned into an owl and flew away as fast as he could.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Sarah sat on her bed watching the goblins play chutes and ladders. Hoggle was resting on her lap and wondering how mad she was. Sarah was contemplating how to deal with Jareth. If not for Dusty’s quick reflexes, Hoggle would have had a painful encounter with her chemistry book. She had spotted his tail sticking out from under the vanity. Her first thought was a snake had come in when she left the window open. Grabbing the heaviest text book she possessed, she pulled her chair out and threw it with all her might.

Dusty realized what she was doing and grabbed Hoggle by the tail and pulled him out of the way. Their cover now blown, the other four came out of hiding and explained to Sarah that the King had ordered them to guard her at all times.

As a rat, all poor Hoggle could do was squeak, so Flower translated for him. All Hoggle said was that being a rat and guarding Sarah was his punishment from Jareth. He was afraid to tell Sarah what he had done to earn that punishment. Although at the moment he wasn’t sure if he was more afraid of Sarah or Jareth.

When Jareth arrived, he noticed the window was wide open, despite how cold it was outside, and she was obviously waiting for him. He sat in the tree by the window for a moment and watched. Taking a deep breath, he flew in and changed. “Precious, I can explain.”

Sarah quickly placed Hoggle on the bed and stood to face the Goblin King. “Don’t you Precious me. What the hell are you up to? I asked you to stay away until Sunday and then you show up the next night claiming you couldn’t sleep without seeing me. Now I find the goblins were here the whole time in hiding, secretly spying on me for you. And you turned poor Hoggle into a rat and left him here. Were you hoping I’d find him and kill him? Or that Daddy would set traps?” She stepped over the goblins and moved to stand right in front of him.

Jareth glanced behind her at the goblins. “Take Hoggle and wait outside. I wish to speak to Sarah alone.” The goblins nodded and hurried out the window, Hoggle being carried by Flower.

Jareth waved his hand and closed the window once they were all outside. When he turned back to Sarah she was glaring at him. “Who the hell do you think you are?” She jabbed his chest with her finger. “You have no right.”

Jareth grabbed her hand to stop the jabs. “I have every right to protect what’s mine.” He stepped forward.

Sarah pulled her hand from his grasp and stepped back. “I’m not in any way shape or form yours.”

“No?” Jareth took another step forward. “So are you telling me this was all a waste of my time? Were you lying about being friends with potential for more?” Sarah backed up, but for each step she took back he took one forward.

“I wasn’t lying.” Sarah whispered.

“Are you certain? Because you just said you are in no way shape or form mine, which implies that you’re not my friend either. And while I may not know fully what being friends means to most, I do believe that as I thought you were my friend, I have every right to keep you safe.” Sarah suddenly found her back against the wall. “The goblins weren’t here the whole time. Just since yesterday and with damned good reason. Did you think to ask your rat friend why he was being punished or ask the goblins why I sent them to guard you?” Jareth glared at her.

Sarah looked down in silence then looked up at Jareth, but quickly ducked her head. “No I didn’t.”

“Of course not!” He slammed his fist against the wall by her head causing her to jump. “You’d rather paint me as your villain again. Something’s not right so old Jareth the Goblin King must be up to no good.” He spat.

Sarah looked up to see his eyes were almost black. “Jareth…I…”

He placed his other hand on the other side of her head, essentially pinning her. “Is that what I have to do to get what I want? Do you want me to be the villain and take what I want?”

“What? No!” Sarah was shocked to hear him ask such a thing.

“Perhaps I do.” He leaned closer. “Night after night I fly here and I’ve kept my desires under control, no matter how crazy you drive me.” He nuzzled her neck and inhaled her scent. “I asked to stay with you while in owl form so I wouldn’t be tempted to do any of the many things I’ve dreamt of doing to you.” He licked the edge of her ear.

Sarah closed her eyes as a shudder ran through her when he licked her. “Jareth please…”

“Please what Precious? Do you want me to stop?” He grinned evilly as he brushed his cheek against hers. “Or is my little Sarah not as innocent as she’s led me to believe? Do you want me to keep going?” He pulled back to look at her. “Do you want to learn what my dreams are made of?” When she didn’t respond or even open her eyes, Jareth leaned forward until his lips were inches from hers. “Is that why you asked me to stay in my true form last night?” He whispered. “Were you trying to tempt me?” Slowly he closed the remaining distance between them and captured her lips.

Sarah found herself conflicted. Part of her wanted his kiss, but she knew she had to stop this before it got out of hand. When he pulled away and started kissing down her jaw and neck, she took a deep breath, placed her hands on his chest and pushed him away. “I don’t want this Jareth. Not like this. Please stop.”

He studied her, the evil smirk still on his face; at least it was until she opened her eyes. Her green eyes were beginning to get red and puffy and were glossy with tears that threatened to fall. Surprised by what he saw, he quickly pulled away and turned his back to her. “Sarah…I…Sarah I never meant to…” He hurried to the window. “I’m sorry.” He opened the window and tossed a crystal out before changing and flying away.

“Jareth!” Sarah raced to the window to try and stop him, but he was gone.

Chapter Text

The crystal Jareth tossed out the window before he flew off changed Hoggle back to his normal self. He and the goblins watched in silence as he flew off, leaving Sarah alone in her room. Slowly they went to the window and peered in. Sarah was slowly walking to her bed. She sat and wiped her eyes. Looking at one another, the goblins and Hoggle all nodded and quietly went in the window. Hoggle closed the window after Cam climbed in. “Lady.” Flower called softly as they walked over to her.

Sarah looked up and saw the group approaching her slowly. “Hoggle you’re back to your old self again.” She tried to give him a smile, but failed.

“Sarah,” Hoggle stepped forward. “Don’t be mad at the King. Its all my fault. I deserved the punishment Jareth gave me.”

She knelt on the floor beside him and the goblins. “Hoggle, I’m sure what ever you did to offend him..”

“It wasn’t him. Sarah…I puts you in danger.” He said quickly before he lost his nerve.

“What? How?” She sat on the floor and the goblins sat beside her.

“Jareth had flown off somewhere and three Fae arrived at the gate. I went out to tells them to go away like I’m supposed to when he’s gone. One of them was the Crown Prince, but I swear I didn’t know that.” Hoggle pleaded for her to believe him.

“Its okay Hoggle.” She took his hand in hers. “What happened?”

“They said the lady with them was to be our new Queen by order of the High Queen.” Hoggle informed her.

“New Queen? You mean the Goblin Queen?” Sarah let go of his hand and leaned back against her bed.

Hoggle nodded. “They want Jareth to marry her. We all know he wants you and we wants you too.”

“Me as Queen?” She knew Jareth wanted to one day make her his Queen, but she had no idea how any of the others felt about that.

“We loves Lady as much as Kingy.” Cam said as he hugged her.

“Kingy loves Lady.” Patch stated.

“Only rights you be our Queenie.” Dusty added.

“Its up to you Sarah, but until you say no and Jareth gives up on you, we refuse to allow anyone to take what, in our opinion, should be your throne.” Hoggle explained. “You won the game and beat Jareth to get your brother back. If Jareth wasn’t on the throne that alone would have made you Queen.”

Sarah nodded. “Jareth told me how he beat the Labyrinth to earn the throne. But Hoggle, why am I in danger?”

“Well the wanna be future Queen tried to order me around and when they told me about the High Queen’s order I said it would never happen. I told them that Jareth had already picked his Queen and we were waiting for her to arrive.” Hoggle placed his hand on her shoulder. “I didn’t mean to. They just made me so mad.”

“So I may be in danger because they know Jareth picked me?” Sarah asked, trying to make sure she understood everything.

“There’s more, but Jareth should be the one to tell ya.” Hoggle answered. “I think he was going to tell ya last night.”

“Why didn’t he?” Sarah crossed her arms over her chest.

“Lady was sad.” Cam responded.

“Yeah, meanie mama lady hurts you.” Flower added.

“Kingy wanted you to smiles.” Dusty told her.

“They’re right. I don’t think he wanted to stress ya more than ya already were. We was here to keeps you safe so he probably figured one more day couldn’t hurt.” Hoggle explained.

“All that was for me…and I just made him feel like I didn’t care for him at all, that we’re not even friends.” Sarah hung her head. “I have to apologize.” She quickly stood. “Hoggle can you take me to the castle?”

“Now?”

“Yes. I have to make this right. When he claimed me as his, the thought never occurred to me that he meant I’m his friend. He left here before I could tell him that I am his friend and that I do care for him. He’s right though, I didn’t get all the facts before I assumed he was to blame and jumped down his throat about it.” She placed a hand on his shoulder. “Please Hoggle.”

Hoggle sighed. “Still a long walk to the castle, even taking the direct route.”

“That’s fine. It’ll give me some time to organize my thoughts.” Sarah smiled.

Hoggle took her hand and walked to the mirror. “This may be a bit uncomfortable. Ready?” Sarah nodded and Hoggle touched the mirror and suddenly the two vanished.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

At the castle, Jareth was pacing the throne room. He went too far and he knew it. He knew it would be quite some time before Sarah was ready for anything like that between them and when she was ready he had planned to woo her night and day and be as romantic as possible. Now she probably wouldn’t let him touch her at all, if she even spoke to him again.

His thoughts were interrupted by a small female goblin. “Kingy, the visitors from befores is back.”

Jareth sighed and sat on his throne. “I will deal with them momentarily.” Summoning a crystal he looked into it and saw Alastair and Heidi were at the fake gate. He chuckled that Alastair still couldn't find the real one. “Interesting, Jaxel isn’t with them.” Standing, Jareth disappeared and reappeared by the gate. “And what do you two want now?”

Alastair and Heidi turned when they heard his voice. “Oh, there you are cousin. I simply wanted to make sure you were alright. Is everything okay with your lady? You worried me when you flew off like that.”

Jareth stared at him then looked to Heidi. “And why are you here?”

“Same as Alastair, I just wanted to make sure you were alright. Plus we didn’t really get to talk before.” Heidi answered.

“There’s nothing for us to discuss.” Jareth said as he looked back to his cousin. “Come Alastair. We’ll talk at the castle.” He grabbed Alastair’s shoulder and transported them to his throne room. Realizing what he was going to do, Heidi grabbed onto Alastair so that she was transported with them. “Just what do you think you are doing?” Jareth demanded once he realized what she had done.

“I wasn’t going to let you leave me out there and I refuse to be lead through that horrid bog again.” Heidi informed him.

“I’m tempted to drop you in the bog right now.” Jareth growled.

“Now is that anyway to talk to your future wife?” She whined.

“You are not going to be my wife. I don’t care what Ta’leena says or thinks about the matter.” Jareth spat.

“I’ll wait for you in the study.” Alastair said softly before quickly exiting the room.

Jareth watched him leave and then turned back to Heidi. “I understand why Ta’leena and Jaxel want an arranged marriage, but what do you get out of this?”

Heidi smiled and sat on a barrel that once held goblin ale. “I get to be Queen, power and respect at Court, a Kingdom, and most importantly I get you.” She grinned.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Sarah had arrived with Hoggle at his small shack, just outside the Labyrinth. He wasted no time getting her inside the walls of the living maze. "You's safer inside than out. The Labyrinth won't lets nothin' happen to its Champion."

Once inside, the gate closed behind them and Sarah followed Hoggle down the long corridor. She looked around and noticed the Labyrinth looked very different. "Hoggle why is everything different than before?"

Hoggle chuckled. "You're not a runner this time. The Labyrinth changes for each runner. What you see now is its normal appearance, though the flowers are new. It must be because you're here."

"Its beautiful." Sarah looked around in awe. Slowly she reached her hand out and touch the stone wall. She smiled as she felt the familar warmth of the Labyrinth's magic.

Suddenly the wall where Sarah had touched separated and a path appeared. Staring down the path, Sarah and Hoggle saw it led straight to the castle. "What did you do?"

Sarah shrugged. "I just touched the wall."

"I've never seen it do that before, not even for Jareth." Hoggle stated. "Oh well," he shrugged, "looks like it will be a shorter trip than I thought."

Sarah nodded and followed Hoggle down the path. When they reached the gate to the Goblin City, she got nervous wondering if the guards would stop them. But there were no guards in sight. As they walked through the city, goblins peered out of their houses and Sarah heard whispers. "Look its the Lady."

"Champion back."

"Is she the new Queenie?"

"She run Labyrinth again?"

Sarah ignored them and hurried to the castle. Hoggle stayed by her side as she walked to the throne room. They stopped at the door when they heard voices inside. "Forget about her Jareth." A female voice said. "There's nothing that she has that I can't give you."

"There is no one that can replace her; not now, not ever." Jareth stated as he sat on his throne.

Sarah peered around the corner and saw a tall Fae woman with long black hair that was pulled back into a braid. "Is that the one you were telling me about?" She whispered to Hoggle. He nodded and they watch as she sat on the King's lap and ran her hand up his chest. Sarah's hands clenched into fists at her sides.

"Come on Jareth." Heidi purred as she leaned closer. "I remember you and I used to have a lot of fun together when we were younger. Like the time we snuck into the woods and..."

Jareth stood and dumped her onto the floor. "Those days are long past Heidi. I'm a different man now. My heart belongs to one woman."

Sarah smirked and tried not to laugh at Heidi's shocked face when she hit the floor. She and Hoggle quickly ducked back around the corner to avoid being seen. "We should get out of here." Hoggle whispered. "We can't let that witch see you."

Sarah started to reply, but stopped when she heard Heidi scream. "FOOL! Like it or not I will be Queen! You can not go against the High Queen!"

"Can't I?" Jareth smirked. "Ta'leena has no power here. Even if she manages to make an arranged marriage between us happen, you will have no authority here. Neither I, nor my subjects will recognize you as our Queen. You will have no place here; not in my castle, not on my throne, not anywhere in my kingdom, and especially not in my bed." Jareth turned his back on her and walked to the window. "Now leave before I drop you into the Bog of Eternal Stench."

Heidi got up and hurried out in a huff, storming right by Hoggle and Sarah with out even seeing them. They looked at each other in disbelief. "How did she not see us?"

Hoggle shrugged. "Probably thoughts you was a servant. Fae tend to ignore everything they believe to be below them."

They both froze when they heard a deep laugh nearby. Jareth also heard it. "What amuses you so, Vol'Sun?"

Sarah watched as the large troll appeared in front of them. He smiled at her and walked into the throne room. "Ye haz a way wit de women Jareth." He chuckled.

"Why are you here? Is everything alright?" Jareth asked, suddenly panicked that he wasn't watching over Sarah.

"Fear not little King. I be watchin' out for ya Lady. She be quite the woman. I see why ye be so stuck on her." Vol'Sun smirked. "I keeps her hidden from de ones that might wish to harm her."

Jareth nodded. "Good. Please Vol'Sun, keep her safe. I'm afraid I won't be able to. I'm not sure if she'll even speak to me again." He said as he hung his head.

"Don't ye be worrin' none Jareth. She be closer to ye din ye dink." He grinned. "Now I be leavin'. Ye haz a visitor."

Jareth turned his back on the troll and sighed. "I've had enough of visitors. Send them away."

"Ye may want to see dis one." Vol'Sun said as he walked out of the room chuckling.

Sarah watched Vol'Sun leave. He bowed to her as he walked by and gave her a toothy grin. Peering around the corner, she watched Jareth for a moment. Shaking his head, he walked over and sat on his throne. Closing his eyes, he leaned forward and placed his head in his hands. After asking Hoggle to return home and assuring him that she would be alright, Sarah slowly walked into the room towards the King. She still wasn't completely sure what she was going to say to him, but any remaining anger she had felt towards him was gone. He had told her several times how he cared for her, but hearing what he said to Heidi drove it home. Even when he thought that she would never speak to him again he was still so incredibly loyal to her and her alone. Sarah felt even guiltier for how she had yelled at him when he first arrived. He was doing everything he could to keep her safe and please her, yet Sarah was still being a brat towards him and not thinking of his feelings. As she neared the throne, she made up her mind. She knew what she had to do. She just hoped she didn't chicken out.

Hearing soft footsteps approaching, he sighed. "Whoever you are, I ask that you leave. I wish to be alone right now." When she reached the throne she stopped and stared at him a moment before stepping up the couple of steps and moving to stand behind the throne. Slowly she reached out and rubbed his shoulders. Jareth sat back slowly and opened his eyes. "You're persistant I'll give you that. I appreciate your kindness, but still I ask you to leave. I will not ask again."

Sarah smirked as she got an idea. She started massaging his shoulders and leaned forward to whisper in his ear. "But I've fought my way here to the castle beyond the Goblin City."

Hearing her voice, Jareth froze. "Sarah?"

"That's right Goblin King. The Champion has returned." She teased.

Jareth jumped up and turned to face her. "What are you doing here?"

"Chasing after my best friend." She told him with a smile.

"Hogwort isn't here." He frowned.

Sarah stepped around the throne to stand beside him. "I wasn't talking about Hoggle." She reached up and caressed his cheek. "And I don't mean Ludo, Didymus, or the goblins either."

Jareth leaned into her caress, savoring it. "Then whom ever did you come to my realm to see Precious?" He hoped with all his heart it was him, but even if it was he wanted to hear her say it.

"I told you. I came after my best friend. You know him very well." Sarah replied as she stepped closer to him. "He's a royal, glittery pain in the ass at times, but I still care for him deeply." She took his hands his hers and gave them a gentle squeeze. "You flew away before I could tell you that."

"Sarah..."

Before he could say anything else, she pulled him to her and hugged him tight. "I couldn't let you beat yourself up all night over something that was my fault." She told him.

Wrapping his arms around her he shook his head. "No Precious, I was to blame. I should have told you what's going on and made you aware of my concerns for your safety."

"The Goblins and Hoggle told me." Sarah told him. "They also said they thought you were going to tell me lastnight, but decided against it because I was upset." She pulled back to look him in the eyes. "I'm sorry for not asking why you sent them and just assuming you were up to no good. I should have known you had reasons for having them watch over me."

Jareth smiled at her and brushed her hair behind her ear. "Your safety will always be my greatest concern." Lifting one of her hands to his lips, he kissed it softly. "I feared I wouldn't be able to keep you safe now. I thought you might never want to see me again after what I did."

Nodding Sarah took a deep breath. "When you called me yours, I thought you were calling me property. I never stopped to consider that you meant I'm your friend."

He laughed lightly. "Well I didn't express my self very clearly either. I should have said I have a right to protect those I care about."

Nodding Sarah gave him I gentle smile. "Yes and you're right. You have every right to keep your friends safe, and I want you to know that you are my friend. In fact I consider you my best friend. When I'm with you I feel safe, relaxed, and I can tell you just about anything. I do care for you deeply; seems like more each day."

"Sarah..." Jareth went to embrace her, a giant grin on his face.
She held her hand out and stopped him. "I'm not done."

Jareth's arms fell to his sides. "Sorry Precious, please continue." He stepped back to give her room.

Sarah paced slowly in front of him for a moment as she gathered her thoughts in order to make sure she expressed herself correctly. "Tonight I saw a side of you I haven't seen in a long time. You reminded me of how you were when I ran the Labyrinth. I tend to forget that you can be the intimidating King or the charming seducer. I wasn't scared of you at any point, and I'm not sure if that is a good thing or not. I should have pushed you away sooner, but part of me didn't want to." She took a deep breath and looked at him. "I guess I forget at times that you're not my age, nor are you new and inexperience at these things like I am. I also don't realize that things I do or say may be affecting you in ways I didn't even think of. You said I drove you crazy and that you've restrained yourself. For that I'm grateful to you. I know you could easily do as you want with me and if tonight was any indication I don't think you'd get too much resistance from me if you tried. I'm not sure what to do with these emotions. There are times I look at you and I want you to kiss me, yet I'm scared of it." Sarah turned her back on him and took a few steps forward as she started getting nervous, especially with the way he was starring at her.

Jareth watched her closely. He knew admitting this to him was probably extremely hard for her. He was glad she was opening up to him, but at the same time he hated seeing her being so timid and shy. Slowly he walked over to her and hugged her from behind, hoping she took it as him being comforting, and not him trying something. At first her body tensed up, but soon she relaxed and leaned back against him. "Its alright dearest." He whispered in her ear. "This is new to me as well." He kissed her temple. "While I admit in my youth I was wild and I have slept with many women, I've never cared for them, not the way I care for you. Bedding them was all I cared about. There were times I did or said the wrong thing and they left, some have even slapped me. It never bothered me. I just moved on to the next attractive female I found. Now I find myself planning, thinking, and even second guessing myself. I want nothing more than to make you happy and I worry about pushing you away and loosing you again." He held her tight and rested his head against hers.

"Jareth..." Sarah turned her head to look at him. "You've told me several times how you feel, but well I don't know, I guess I never truly believed it. I just couldn't comprehend that someone like you could actually care for me the way you say you do, but after what I heard earlier..."

"Earlier?" Jareth let her go and turned her to face him. "Sarah, how long have you been in the castle?"

Sarah looked down at her feet, worried he would be angry for her listening to his conversation with that woman. "Not too long before I walked in here. I did hear part of what you said to that woman that stormed out of here."

"Heidi?"

She nodded. "I also saw you dump her on the floor." Sarah couldn't help but smirk at the thought of
Heidi landing on her butt.

"Found that amusing, did you Precious?" Jareth asked as he crossed his arms over his chest. He wasn't mad, in fact he was a little glad she saw that, especially if it helped her finally see just how much he truly cared for her. Sarah nodded and giggled a little. Jareth found himself laughing as well. "I suppose it was, wasn't it." Sarah finally looked up at him and nodded. "Well then I suppose I should explain everything to you. I'm not sure what the goblins and Hoggle may have told you, or what you heard from the hall, but I shall tell you everything."

Jareth took her by the hand and led her to his throne and had her sit on it. "Trying to tempt me to stay?"

Jareth chuckled. "That wasn't my intention. I simply wanted you to be comfortable, but if its working by all means stay and sit on the throne all you want, even if I'm already sitting there." He smirked. Sarah shook her head at his teasing and watched him sit on the steps by her feet. "Apparently my behavior at the last meeting of the Court has the High Queen worried. She believes something, or someone is affecting my judgement." He smirked at her hoping she understood that it was her that caused the change in his behavior, which he believed she did based on the goofy grin she gave him. "So she sent my cousin, Alastair, to monitor me. Luckily for me, it seems my cousin is on my side. He warned me of Ta'leena's plans. It seems she wants the cause of my sudden change found and eliminated."

"Wait...are you saying what I think you're saying?"

Jareth nodded. "Yes Sarah. If she finds you, she will try to have you killed. Thanks to your dwarf friend, Jaxel, the Crown Prince, knows of your existence. Hoggle told Jaxel, Alastair, and Heidi I had chosen a Queen. For now only Alastair knows your identity." Jareth sighed. "I never wanted anyone to learn about you until I could ensure you were completely safe. Hogwort's slip of the tongue is why I sent the goblins and asked Vol'Sun for help."

"Vol'Sun? Is he the big blue guy from earlier?" Sarah asked.

Nodding, Jareth stood. "Yes, he's a powerful troll shaman that still practices the old magic. He taught me much of what I know. He's been using his magic to keep you hidden."

"So what now? I stayed guarded by goblins and magic?" Sarah questioned. "Jareth I can't stay hidden forever."

"I know. Its only until I find a permanent solution, especially with this whole arranged marriage nonsense. I believe Alastair and I can talk Jaxel into dropping it, but Heidi for so odd reason seems determinded to go through with it. Ta'leena must have offered her something major." Jareth said as he paced in front of Sarah.

"Or she really wants in your pants." Sarah grumbled.

Jareth stopped and looked at Sarah. "Possible." He chuckled. "But I highly doubt that is the reason she agreed to it. She has already, as you put it, been in my pants. It was many years ago. Long before I became the Goblin King. I'm not proud to admit it, but back then, like most Fae males my age, I tried to bed every female I could. That all changed once I became King." Jareth explained. "At first a few of the women I had relations with would send notes and request my presence. Never did they visit me here though." Jareth resumed his pacing in front of Sarah. "Soon they contacted me less and less as they all married other Fae. I soon realized none of them ever really cared for me and I eventually refused to see any of them at all. I haven't been intimate with anyone in a very very long time, nor have I had the desire to be." He looked at Sarah, who had been listening intently to him. "Well other than with one particular person, whom I'm willing to continue waiting for." Seeing her duck her head, he grinned.

Blushing slightly, Sarah glanced up at him. "Jareth, I... well I've never been with anyone. Hell I've only kissed two people besides you, neither of them were very good."

Jareth sat by her feet again and gave her a mischievous grin. "So are you saying I was?" He asked as he took her hand in his.

"Jareth!"

"I'm teasing Sarah." He kissed her hand. "I'll admit I do want to hold you and kiss you all the time, along with many other things I'm sure you would enjoy." He gave her a wink and grinned from ear to ear when she looked away, her face completely red. Reaching up he placed a finger under her chin and turned her head, making her look at him. "But I won't do any of that until you are ready and give me your permission Precious. I'm truly sorry for my actions earlier. I never wanted to do anything like that, I just... well I lost control."

She gave him a gentle smile. "Its alright Jareth. I forgive you and I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy it a little."'

"Oh?" He raised an eyebrow. "Do tell. What part did you enjoy my dear?"

"The..um..well when you kissed me. I told you there have been times that I kinda wanted you to do that, well kiss me that is. I didn't want you to do it like that."

Jareth nodded. "So that's what you meant when you told me not like this?" She nodded. "I see. So would it be alright for me to occasionally kiss you?"

"You already do." Sarah replied as she stared into his eyes.

"I don't mean on the cheek or forehead, dearest. I'm asking if I can give you a real kiss on the lips." Jareth informed her as he stood and leaned against the arm of his throne.

"I guess it wouldn't be a bad thing." Sarah teased as her eyes went from his eyes to his lips and back to his eyes.

"I could always give you a sample of what it would feel like." Jareth stated as he leaned closer.

"And just when were you wanting to do that?"

"Oh Sarah, you cruel girl are you really going to make me ask?"

Sarah smirked. She knew he wanted to kiss her right then and there, and truth be told she wanted it as much as him, but she was enjoying teasing him. "Perhaps. I mean we are in a very open room. Anyone could walk in and see us."

"I would bog them immediately." He cupped her chin and gazed into her green eyes, still seeking her permission.

"Yes." She whispered.

Jareth barely heard her, but he wasted no time in closing the remaining gap between them. He kissed her softly, slowly moving his lips over hers. After a few moments he reluctantly he pulled away, but not before giving her three quick pecks on the lips. "Oh Precious I had better get you home."

Sarah looked at him confused. "What?"

"I may not be able to resist kissing you more." He stood up and took a few steps away from her. "For now I think it may be best if I don't stay with you until you fall asleep, not even in my owl form. I've been finding it harder and harder to leave you. So I'll go back to my short visits. I do hope you still wish to visit me here during your break though."

Nodding, Sarah ran her fingers though her hair. "Of course and I agree that going back to short visits would be best, especially with Irene being extra nosey now. And yes I do still intend to sneak away with you for a few days. Just remember you have to meet Nanny first."

"Of course." He walked back over to her and held his hand out to her. "Now I should get you home before you're missed."

Taking his hand, Sarah stood. "Yea that's a good idea."

Jareth wrapped his arms around her and soon they were in her room. "Here you are my dear, back home." He let her go and went to the window. "I'll be leaving now so you can rest. You've have a very eventful day."

"Jareth wait!" She rushed over to him before he got the window open.

"Yes, Precious." He looked at her with a curious expression.

"Well, you don't have to rush off." She moved so that she was in front of him. "It is alright for you to stay for a little bit."

He gave her a gentle smile. "I just thought it best to leave quickly. The longer I'm with you, the harder it is to leave." He brushed her hair from her face. "Besides I do have a Kingdom to run and a marriage to avoid."

"Can the High Queen really make you marry that woman?" Sarah asked as she stared at the floor.
"She can try, but without my consent it won't happen. And even if she does find a way to force it, neither I nor my subjects no the Labyrinth itself will recognize her as our Queen." Jareth answered as he lifted her head. Don't worry I'm not letting myself be married off." He grinned. "Now I best leave before I change my mind."

As he reached for the window, Sarah grabbed his hand. "Promise me you'll be careful."

"Of course Precious. Fear not, I can handle any thing Ta'leena decides to throw at me." He touched her cheek with his gloved hand. "Goodnight my precious Sarah."

Sarah watched as he turned back to the window and slowly opened it. "Not going to kiss me goodbye?"

He let go of the window and turned to face her. She gave him and innocent look and he shook his head laughing lightly. "Oh you are a cruel temptress tonight, aren't you. I believe one kiss is enough for one night, and you've had two tonight." He wrapped his arms around her and hugged her. "Just remember my dear, sweet, Sarah if you tease and tempt me too much I will find a way to get even." He kissed her forehead and let her go. "Goodnight Sarah." He quickly changed and flew away before she could delay him further.

Sarah watched him fly off and smiled as she traced her lips with her finger. "Goodnight Jareth. Sweet dreams my Goblin King."

Chapter Text

When Jareth returned to the castle, he found Alastair waiting for him in the throne room. "Ah there you are!" He exclaimed. "Did you forget about me?"

"Honestly cousin I did." Jareth replied with a smirk. "I had a very unexpected visitor."

"Other than Heidi?"

"Yes other than her. After she stormed out I was pleasantly surprised to see my Sarah." Jareth told him as he say on the throne.

"She was here?"

Jareth nodded. "All is well again and she will be staying here during part of her winter break." He grinned. "Now to get Jaxel and Heidi to drop this ridiculous marriage idea."

"Jaxel shouldn't be an issue. I know you never really got along with your brother, but he does care for you. He wants you to be happy. If Sarah is what will give you happiness I don't see him getting in the way of that." Alastair stated. "Heidi on the other hand is convinced you'll pick her over any woman."

"Yes, she said as much earlier, though perhaps she's not as convinced now." Jareth chuckled. "I did drop her on the floor rather hard."

"Oh?"

"She decided to sit on my throne, while I was sitting here." Jareth said calmly

"And you just threw her to the floor?" Alastair questioned. "Its a wonder she didn't think you were just trying to bed her here."

"Oh no I stood up and let her fall on her own and I made it quite clear she was not welcome anywhere in my Kingdom. I didn't know it at the time but Sarah witnessed the entire exchange. She believes Heidi only wants in my pants." Jareth laughed lightly remembering the look on his Sarah's face when she had made the comment. He thoroughly enjoyed seeing her jealous.

"In your pants?" Alastair looked confused. "No offense Jareth, but there's barely enough room for you in those pants. I don't think Heidi could fit in them."

Jareth threw his head back, laughing until his eyes watered. "Oh I forget you don't deal with humans often." He said as he wiped his eyes, still laughing. "Its a human expression. It means she wishes to bed me."

"She already has though. Hasn't she? Or is her bragging false?" Alastair asked.

"No, she has and I made Sarah aware of that and my many other past relations. That was all a very long time ago. I have no desire to bed Heidi or any other Fae female for that matter. I have already told both Heidi and Sarah of my intention to remain loyal to one woman. Heidi was very upset to hear it would not be her."

"And how did Sarah take that bit of knowledge?"

"She seemed quite pleased to see Heidi be dumped on the floor, but other than that we didn't discuss it in great detail. There are still many things that my Lady and I must work on and many obstacles I'm certain we still must overcome, but the fact that she followed me here gives me hope for our future." Jareth told him.

"Never thought I'd ever see you be this serious about one woman." Alastair smiled. "I'm truly happy for you. I can't wait to meet this Sarah. To win such devotion from you, she must be even more extraordinary that I thought."

"I shall introduce you to her soon enough cousin." Jareth said as he stood. "First let's have some dinner and plan how to dispose of this arranged marriage." Jareth led his cousin to the dinning hall.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Late that night, Sarah woke from her sleep feeling like she was being watched. The room was unusually dark and she couldn't hear a sound, not even the goblins breathing. "Goblins?" She called, but no answer. She sat up slowly and looked around. All she could see was the shadows and silhouettes of the items in her room. Feeling uneasy, she gripped her medallion and soon felt it pulse. The warmth of the Labyrinth's magic helped ease her worry a little, but she found she still felt uncomfortable. For a minute or two she debated calling for Jareth, but she worried that she may wake him.

Climbing from her bed she grabbed the cloak from the back of her chair, where it was placed after she had taken it off, and wrapped it around herself. Even though it had been many days since he had worn it, Sarah could still smell his scent and almost feel his warmth from it. She figured it was either her mind playing tricks or a result of his magic. Either way having it wrapped around her made her feel much better. Laying back on the bed, Sarah pulled the comforter over herself and tried to go back to sleep.

By the window Vol'Sun watched the human with interest. "So de Lady can tells I be here." He chuckled. Motioning the the little goblins that were hiding behind a tree, he whispered to them. "It be ok lil ones. Ye can returns to ya Lady now. She be sleepin' once more. I shielded her room from all magics but ye King's. Nothin' be gettin' to her now."

Slowly the goblins returned to Sarah's room. None of them liked being near Vol'Sun. He scared them all. Cam was the only one brave enough to risk saying anything to him, which was probably due to the King's assurance to him that they had nothing to fear from the troll. "Thanks for helping Lady. We loves her and wants her safe."

Vol'Sun grinned at the smallest of the goblins. "Dink nothin' of it lil one. She be quite a Lady. Jareth be a lucky man to haz her. Ye lil ones do ya part and keep her safe. I'll do what I can to keep her hidden. Now go and rest lil ones. You just let ole Vol'Sun take the night watch."

Cam bowed to the troll and hurried inside. Soon all five were snuggled at the foot of Sarah's bed.

 

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Jareth was sitting on his throne, brooding. He wasn't sure why he was in a foul mood, but he was. Suddenly his vision went dark as two hands covered his eyes. "Alastair if that is you, I'm in no mood for your pranks today cousin." His statement was answered with giggles. "Well that certainly doesn't sound like my cousin." He smirked.

"And just who does it sound like my King?" a voice asked sweetly.

"Sounds like a young temptress who is up to mischief." Jareth answered as he pulled one hand from his eyes and kissed its palm. "What brings you here at this hour my dear? Shouldn't you be home resting? Or have you decided to stay here because you miss me too much when we're apart?"

Sarah uncovered his eyes and walked around the throne to stand in front of him. "You know me so well Jareth." She smiled and sat on the arm of the throne. "How can I sleep when my heart is here?"

Jareth grabbed her by the waist and pulled her onto his lap. She let out a squeak of surprise but was soon laughing as he tickled her sides. "Now you know my struggle for the last few years Precious."

"A struggle neither of us will face ever again." She said sweetly before kissing him. As she kissed him gently, he tightened his grip on her waist with one hand while the other made its way to the back of her head. Jareth deepened the kiss, earning a moan from Sarah. Slowly her hands rubbed up and down his chest as he kissed her with all the passion he had been holding inside for so long.

Pulling away, Jareth kissed along her jaw and up to her ear. "Oh my Sarah, are you saying what I pray you are?" he whispered as he kissed her cheek and continued to pepper her face with soft kisses.

"Yes Jareth." She took his face in her hands and stopped his assault of kisses. Making him look her in the eyes, she smiled. "I'm saying I've decided to stay here, with you. Forever."

"I love you." He whispered before capturing her lips again. As he worked his lips over hers, his hands ran up and down her sides sending shivers down her spine.

Sarah pulled back grinning. "I love you too." She gave him a quick kiss and stood up. Jareth watched her with a curious grin as she slowly removed the sweater she had been wearing. The moment it landed on the floor, she sat on his lap again, straddling him. He groaned as she softly ground her hips against him. "I want to be yours." she said softly as she kissed and nibbled his neck.

Enjoying everything that she was doing to him, he ran his hands down her back and laid his head back letting her continue her exploration. "I'm yours Sarah. I always will be." He moaned as she ground against him again. "Gods Sarah do you know what you're doing to me love?"

Sarah smirked and rolled her hips against him again. "I can feel exactly what I'm doing to you my love." She kissed down his neck and down his chest slowly. "And I have no intention of stopping anytime soon." She got off his lap and knelt between his legs. She rubbed her hands up his thighs slowly, teasingly. "Shall I give you your dreams Jareth?" She asked as she rubbed her hand over his already hard package.

Jareth laid his head back, eyes closed, as she continued to stroke him through the tight fabric of his pants. "Sarah..."

"Jareth!" He had been fast sleep in his room, dreaming of the day Sarah finally decided to stay with him forever, when his sleep was interrupted. "Jareth!"

He sat up quickly in his bed. "Sarah?" There was no mistaking the voice he heard calling for him. When he heard her call again, he dashed to the window and left, not even bothering to dress. He reached her house faster than he ever had and found Vol'Sun sitting in the tree by her window. He landed beside the troll and changed. "Vol'Sun is Sarah alright?"

Vol'Sun looked at the frantic King. "She be sleepin' Jareth. Nothin' to fear."

"She called out for me." Jareth explained.

Vol'Sun laughed. "I dink ya Lady be dreamin', but ye go see for ya self if ye must."

Jareth nodded and hurried to the window. The room was dark and he couldn't see much inside, so he opened the window slowly. As he climbed in he heard a tiny voice. "Kingy?"

"Shh." He nodded to Flower, who had woken when he opened the window. "I came to check on our Lady."

"Lady fine." Flower said sleepily.

Dusty poke his head up. "Hi Kingy, we stays with Lady."

"Troll say he looks out for Lady tonight." Cam explained.

Jareth was now standing over the bed watching Sarah. "Very good. Could you five wait outside a moment?" They nodded and did as he asked.

A moment later, Sarah tossed in her sleep. "Jareth..." his name came out as a moan.

Smirking, Jareth pulled the chair over and sat by her. "Now whatever are you dreaming of to make you say my name like that Precious?" He whispered. He watched her toss for a bit and then noticed that she was wrapped in the cloak he had given her. "Missed me that much huh?" He chuckled. Brushing the hair from her face he was very tempted to look into her mind and see what she was dreaming. Must be quite a dream if her calling out in her sleep had woken him. Shaking his head, he decided against it. He stood and returned the chair to its usually place by her vanity. "Oh dear Sarah. What am I going to do with you?" Slowly he leaned over and placed a gentle kiss on her lips.

As he turned to leave she called to him again. "Jareth.... don't go." Turning around he watched a moment, wondering if she had woken up. "Stay..."

"Sarah?" He called softly. "Precious are you awake?"

"Mmmm." She sat up slowly and rubbed her eyes. "Jareth?"

"I'm here love." He walked back over to her and sat on the edge of the bed. "You were dreaming. Its alright."

Still half asleep, Sarah leaned over and wrapped her arms around him. "I thought you were going to leave."

He chuckled. "Well I was, but then you woke up. I couldn't leave without letting you know everything is alright." He wrapped his arms around her and held her tight. Kissing her forehead, he smiled at how she snuggled against him. He knew if he let her, she would go to sleep in his arms. "So what were you dreaming of dearest?"

"Dreaming?" She asked sleepily.

"Yes Sarah you were dreaming. You called out in your sleep so loudly that it woke me from my slumber all the way at the castle." He whispered.

"The castle? But I'm with you at the castle." Sarah said before she yawned.

Chuckling, Jareth made her sit up and look at him. "Sarah, dearest I need you to focus. You're still half asleep my dear. You're not at the castle. You at home in your bed. I'm here because you called."

Sarah blinked at him several times and then he saw the realization wash over her as she fully woke up. "Oh god, I was dreaming."

"Yes you were." He laughed lightly. "Quite some dream from the way you were calling out my name."

Sarah blushed and then she realized that Jareth was only in a thin pair of sleep pants. "Uh Jareth... if I was only dreaming, then why are you wearing so little?" She asked as she turned her head.

Glancing down, Jareth realized he never bothered to dress. "Oh, well in my haste to get to you I neglected to dress. You see I was woken from my own dream by a certain someone screaming my name. I thought you were in distress and hurried to your aid. Imagine my surprise to find all is well and my sweet little Sarah calling out for me in her sleep."

"I woke you?" She turned her head back to look at him. He nodded and caressed her cheek. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to..."

"Shhh." He placed a finger to her lips. "Its fine. I'm just glad it was a false alarm."

Sarah took his hand in hers. "So do you wear your gloves to bed?"

Nodding, Jareth pulled his hand from hers and adjusted his gloves. "Usually. If I don't its become a bit of habit to instantly put them on when I wake. Tonight I kept them on."

"Still not going to tell me why you always have to wear them?"

"Not tonight dearest." Deciding to tease her a bit, he smirked. "Though if you really wish to know I will happily tell you if you tell me the details of the dream you were having about me."

"Jareth!" Her face turned red.

"Or maybe you'd like me to help you act it out." He purred as he leaned closer. "I have to say the way you moaned my name earlier was delicious." He whispered in her ear. He kissed her cheek and added. "I do so hope to find out one day what I have to do in order to hear you do that again." Slowly he stood and watched her for a moment. "But for now I'll leave you to your dreams."

"What?" Sarah looked up at him. She hadn't expected him to suddenly back off.

"I believe I've teased you enough for now dearest, plus I'm having a hard time keeping myself under control. I promised you I would behave and so I shall." He turned his back to her, hoping to prevent her from seeing just how she was affecting him. "I'm glad you're enjoying the cloak I gave you."

Sarah stood and wrapped the cloak around herself. "Yes I am. Thank you again." She looked around the room and noticed the goblins were still no where to be seen. "Where are the goblins?"

"I asked then to wait outside. I wanted a moment alone with you. I hadn't intended on waking you though. I just wanted to make sure you were alright." Jareth explained.

Nodding Sarah walked over to Jareth and hugged him from behind. "I'm sorry for waking you. That's the exact reason I didn't call for you earlier."

Turning to face her, Jareth made her look at him. "You were going to call for me? Is everything alright, or did you just miss me that much?" He smirked.

"I did miss you." She looked down as she grinned, "But something felt off. I woke up to a very quiet and empty room. I felt like I was being watched. The goblins weren't here and well I'm sure I was just being silly." She shook her head. "The Labyrinth's magic made me feel a bit better, but having your cloak on really helped. Made me feel like you were here watching over me."

Jareth nodded. "You probably just felt Vol'Sun outside. He's been watching over you tonight. Nothing is going to get to you with out him or the goblins knowing, and if by some chance it does get by them all you have to do is call and I'll be here." He kissed her forehead. "I'm actually a little glad you called me, even if you didn't mean to."

"And why is that?"

"Sadly I was going to send you a note in the morning telling you I won't be able to come by for a day or two. I'm leaving with my cousin in the morning to go see Jaxel. I'm going to put an end to this ridiculous arranged marriage as quickly as I can. I may gone a few days, but you can reach me by goblin with a note if needed." He explained.

"No more what's her name?"

"Heidi and yes she will be out of the picture for good." Jareth responded as he watched her carefully.

Wrapping her arms around him, Sarah smiled. "Good."

"Jealous Precious?"

"No, I just don't like people like her." Sarah answered.

"I see. And what do people like her do that bothers you so?"

"Think they can get whatever they want, no matter what others think or feel. They look down on others and think we owe them something just because of who they are." She stated.

"You sound like you deal with people like her a lot."

"There are a few girls at school like her. I can't stand them." Sarah informed him.

Nodding he hugged her tight. "Fear not, if the time comes that you have to see or deal with the Fae of the Court, you will never face them alone. If I could I would even help you deal with the ones here that bother you so."

She shrugged. "Its fine. They don't bother me much anymore. Plus after this year I'll never see any of them again."

"Oh?" Jareth raised an eyebrow.

"Yea. I graduate in June, then they're going where ever for college and I'll go where ever I choose." Sarah stated.

"And no clue where you intend to go?" He asked.

Sarah pulled away from his embrace and sat on her bed. "Not really. I know I want to leave this town, but my exact destination is still up in the air." Jareth nodded and sat on the chair by the vanity. Sarah watched him closely for a moment. She knew he wanted her to go with him. "I'm not saying no to the the Underground, just so you know. I just, well I want to make sure I think things through. No spur of the moment decisions."

"Of course Sarah. As I told you, there is no rush. If you wish to attend a college and seek a life aboveground I will be here to support you."

Sarah nodded. "I know, and I really appreciate your patience. I know me going off to college isn't what you want to hear me talk about."

Jareth held his hand up to stop her. "Sarah all I want is for you to be happy, no matter where or how you choose to live your life, as long as it makes you happy that's all I could wish for." He stood and looked around. "Anyway, I should head home. I need to get up early to leave with Alastair and I'm sure you'll need your rest to deal with your family."

Sarah stood. "Yea, Nanny is leaving today and I'm sure Irene will be even worse once she leaves." She walked over to where Jareth was standing. "So how long do you think you'll be gone?"

"No more than a few days. Dealing with Jaxel shouldn't be too difficult." He gave her a gentle smile. "I'll send word to you if this is going to take longer. In the meantime, keep your goblins with you and if you feel uneasy again, just call for Vol'Sun. He will be near keeping you safe in my absence."

"I will, and you be careful. I know you say the High Queen can't hurt you, but I still worry." She stared at the floor.

Jareth lifted her chin. "I'll be fine Precious. If something were to happen. You'd be the first to know."

"How?"

Jareth tapped her medallion. "This. Just as it allows you to call for me, it let's you know if there is an issue with myself as well. The Labyrinth will let you know something is wrong. If, and this is very unlikely, something should happen to me, go with the goblins to the castle. Its the safest place."

"What then?" Sarah asked.

"Well then you'll either become their Queen and rule in my place, or you will look after things until new ruler is found." Sarah started to protest. "Sarah we both know they will listen to no one other than you if I should fall, but I have no fear. I have no intention of leaving any time soon." He cupped her chin. "I would never leave you, not for anything." He leaned closer to her slowly. "Sarah, may I..."

"Yes." She whispered. Jareth closed the distance between them and kissed her gently, slowly adding pressure. He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her close as he deepened the kiss. Sarah wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed him back. When he finally pulled away they were both out of breath.

"Goodnight Sarah." He gave her another quick kiss and left quickly.

Sarah pulled the cloak around herself as she watched him leave. "Goodnight Jareth." She whispered

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Next morning, Jareth and Alastair left the Castle beyond the Goblin City and headed to Ta'leena's castle. The trip didn't take long, but since the Court wasn't meeting, it took longer than usual for Jareth to actually be allowed inside the castle. After numerous security checks and waiting for Jaxel to agree to see them, Alastair and Jareth were finally allowed inside.

Jareth was ready to leave the moment they arrived. "I really hope Jaxel doesn't drag this out."

"Fear not little brother." Jaxel said as he walked into the room. "I have already informed mother that I do not intend to go through with the arranged marriage. Heidi is very upset, but she'll get over it."

"So this is over?" Jareth asked. "No more meddling in my affairs?"

"Not from me at least." Jaxel stated. "Mother on the other hand isn't as willing to drop the arrangement with Heidi. She believes you're bluffing. She wants a public announcement of your engagement along with the identity of your future bride."

"Is that all?" Alastair laughed. "Auntie realizes that Jareth will do that anyway when the time comes. Right cousin?"

"Yes, while I'd prefer to keep my Lady to myself, I know she'll have to be introduced to the court and occasionally appear with me. So yes. There will be a formal announcement and a ball to introduce her to the court, when the time is right."

"Well the time had better come soon." Ta'leena said as she walked in. "You have until the New Year ball to make your Lady known to us. If you don't then arrangements will proceed with Heidi and you will marry her or you will be executed for treason."

Chapter Text

"Treason!" Alastair exclaimed. "Surely you jest Auntie."

"Mother, be reasonable." Jaxel pleaded.

"Absurd! How can my refusing to marry someone be considered treason?" Jareth demanded.

Ta'leena smirked and took a seat by the fireplace. "Did you forget your vow to me and the court my boy?" Jareth gritted his teeth at her use of my boy. "You vowed to follow any order given and do what you must for the good of the Court."

"I fail to see how marrying Heidi is for the good of the Court." Jareth almost growled. His hands were clenched into fists by his side. "And I suppose you are officially making this an order now?"

Nodding his mother waved her hand and created a fire in the hearth. "Yes. You need an heir and we've waited long enough for you to do so on your own. If you should die with no heir the Goblin Kingdom is lost to us. That ridiculous Labyrinth will only let someone that can beat it be the ruler. I don't want to take the chance that one of our enemies may claim the throne. So it is your duty to provide an heir. If you truly have chosen a Queen there should be no issue. If you're bluffing, well Heidi will make an excellent Queen." Ta'leena smiled. "So if you should fail to produce this supposed chosen Queen, then you must marry the woman I've selected for you. I've already signed the agreement papers with Heidi and her family."

"There is someone that Jareth loves." Alastair argued. "I've seen her. She is perfect for him and the Goblins love her. Putting Heidi on the throne is a bad idea Auntie. It will cause nothing but trouble with Jareth's subjects. They see his Lady as their Queen and want no other."

"Then where is she? Why has no official announcement been made or an engagement ball held?" Ta'leena asked.

"Things are not quite that simple." Jareth muttered. "My Lady hasn't officially agreed to be my Queen. I'm still courting her."

"Still no public introduction has been made." Ta'leena spat. "No, you will either present her to the Court or you will forget her and do as I tell you." She gave Jareth an evil grin and added, "Or are you afraid to present her because she's a human?"

"Human?!" Jaxel's jaw dropped. "You must be joking mother." He looked to his brother, who was glaring at their mother. "Jareth tell her its not true. Surely you don't plan to make a human your Queen."

"A human? Queen?" Heidi walked in and had a look of disgust on her face. "I will not be denied for a filthy human. Its an insult. "

"Shut your mouth." Jareth snapped at her. "There is nothing filthy about her."

"Then its true..." Jaxel was stunned. "Brother have you gone mad?"

"Love is madness brother." Jareth replied. "She has earned her place in my heart and on the throne at my side. I will not give her up."

"So I was correct. It is Sarah." Ta'leena had a smug grin on her face.

"Sarah? The girl that beat you?" Jaxel inquired.

Jareth sighed. "Yes. My Sarah. The girl that beat the Labyrinth, which by all rights made her Queen by the laws of the Labyrinth. The throne is hers just as much as it is mine. My subjects love and respect her because she earned it. The only way they will accept another is if my Lady refuses me and even then any to take the throne must beat the Labyrinth, as I have done, to earn their respect." He informed them.

"But she did refuse you son." Ta'leena commented. "Or was all that rage and despair after she won back the child simply a temper tantrum due to her taking back the baby?"

"Things have changed." Jareth ran his hand through his hair. "Sarah has let me into her life. I've been visiting her for the last month and she has visited me at the castle as well."

"She only wants your riches and Kingdom." Heidi said with a glare. "That's all humans want."

"You're wrong Heidi." Alastair said, jumping to his cousin's aid. "I've seen her and how she treats the goblins. She is a kind and gentle soul. I believe she will make a fine Queen."

"She'll do anything to get what she wants." Heidi retorted, her voice full of venom. "Humans are selfish and greedy."

"Sarah is not like that." Jareth said quickly. "If it were true she would already be on the throne. I've offered her my Kingdom, all my wealth, her dreams, anything she could ever want; yet she wants none of it. She simply wishes for us to get to know one another. She enjoys my company because of who I am, not what I am."

Ta'leena threw her head back and laughed. "Do you really think this human loves you? That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard." She stood. "Go. Court your human. Let her show you her true colors. My order still stands. You will introduce her to the Court by the New Years ball or you will marry Heidi at the Imbolc festival. I'll even make it easier on you. You'll be hosting this year's ball." Ta'leena walked out with out another word.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Saturday morning, Sarah woke up early, but didn't feel like getting out of bed. Her grandmother would be leaving around noon and then Sarah would have to deal with Irene. Sighing, she climbed out of bed and dressed. As she was sitting at her vanity brushing her hair, there was a knock on the door. "Come in." Sarah called.

"Ah, you are up." Her grandmother said smiling. "How did you sleep?"

"Alright I guess." Sarah shrugged. "Do you really have to leave today?"

Her grandmother chuckled. "Yes, but its just for a few weeks. Then you and Toby get to stay with me, well Toby does at least. I'm sure you're anxious to spend a little quality time with your fella." She smirked.

"He's just a friend, Nanny."

"Uh huh, for now, but if you play your cards right when you come home he may be much more." Her grandmother sat on her bed. "So what are you giving him for Christmas?"

"No clue. I hadn't even thought about gifts yet. I don't even know what to get for Daddy and Irene, much less Jareth." Sarah bit her lip. "I'm not even sure I'll have a lot of money. I got Toby that jacket for his Halloween costume and that ate up most of my savings, plus the toy he wants is kind of expensive too."

"Jacket? Toy?" Her grandmother looked at her confused. "Why were you the one o buy his costume?"

"Irene bought him a stupid pumpkin costume, but he wanted to be Marty McFly from Back to the
Future. I saw the jacket and got it for him. For Christmas he wants the Delorian. I found a remote control one, but its not cheap. Luckily the manager of KB Toys is letting me make payments." Sarah explained.

"How much do you still owe?" Sarah reached into her drawer, pulled out a receipt, and handed it to her grandmother. She looked at it, handed it back to Sarah, and stood up. "I'll be right back." She walked out and a moment later she returned carrying her purse. She closed Sarah's door and sat on the bed. Reaching into her purse she pulled out her wallet and smiled at Sarah. "This should be enough." She said as she handed her granddaughter a large wad of cash.

"Nanny!" Sarah tried to refuse it.

"No arguments young lady." She said firmly as she shoved the money into Sarah's hands. "Get a few things for Toby for me and a nice gift for Jareth, and don't you dare get anything for me. Having you and Toby for the holiday, and getting to meet your friend, is gift enough for me."

Sarah chuckled. "Alright Nanny."

"Good. Now finish what you were doing and come downstairs. I'm making your favorite breakfast before I leave." She said as she stood.

"Mmmmm! I haven't had biscuits and gravy in a long time. Irene never makes it right so I never bother asking her to make it." Sarah said with a big grin on her face.

Her grandmother laughed. "Yes well we both know Irene isn't much of a cook. She's rather pay someone else to cook." She kissed Sarah's forehead and smiled. "Hurry down and you can help me get everything fixed. Oh and not a word to your father or Irene about the money. Understood?"

"Yes Nanny, I understand and I'll be down shortly." Her grandmother nodded and left, closing the door behind her. Sarah put the money away in a safe place and finished brushing her hair before heading down to help with breakfast.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

The rest of Sarah's visit with her family was uneventful and soon her Holiday break was over and she was back to school. She filled her friends, Beckie and Whit, in on all the events of the week along with the plans to visit the Underground during winter break. She had hoped they could provide some ideas for a gift for the glittery King, but they were just as clueless as she was. Sarah hoped that during her shopping trip the following weekend she could find something suitable for him.

Other than a note here and there, Sarah didn't hear from Jareth for over a week. His letters assured her that he was safe and that things were going well. Mostly he wrote to tell her how he missed her or tell her of things that had reminded him of her that day. While Sarah was thrilled each time Cam brought her a new letter, she really missed seeing him. She told him as much in her replies and asked when he would be able to visit again. That was the one thing he never bothered to reply to. She began to worry that there was something wrong and he was refusing to tell her.

Every night, before she went to bed, Sarah sat by her window wrapped in the cloak he had given her. It comforted her, but still she couldn't shake the feeling that something was wrong. The Goblins told her Jareth was fine and that they had seen him, but it did little to ease her worry. Vol'Sun had even taken to coming inside to chat with her on occasion. She found the troll very interesting and he had some very amusing stories to tell her of Jareth in his younger days when Vol'Sun was teaching him about Voodoo and dream magic.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Meanwhile, poor Jareth was stuck at Ta'leena's castle. His brother and mother had insisted, and Ta'leena practically ordered, that he stay for a while and visit with them. Especially since Court gatherings were the only time they ever saw him. Ta'leena spent most of the time going on about plans for the royal wedding and acting like Jareth's decision to make Sarah his Queen was never mentioned. Heidi seemed to love the attention the High Queen was paying to her and the two seemed certain that they would be planning and having a wedding in Febuary.

Jaxel still found it hard to believe his brother had fallen in love with a human. He knew the humans that his brother usually had to deal with and how he hated the way the treated their young ones. The fact that he had found one that wasn't like the rest and had managed to work her way into his heart was incredible. He was constantly asking questions about Sarah and trying to convince Jareth to let him meet the girl. Jareth kept insisting that he and everyone else would meet her when the time was right.

While Jareth wanted to fetch her and get introductions to the Court over with and to get the whole arranged marriage thing over, he feared it was a trick. He knew his mother's opinion on humans and that she would never agree to him taking one as a wife, no matter what. He feared that the moment Sarah was in the presence of the Court, his mother or Heidi would try and get rid of her. For now she was safe at home. Vol'Sun and the goblins were guarding her. While they knew her name was Sarah, his mother and the others had no idea where to find Sarah. Many humans had that name and it would make locating her all the more difficult for them.

Alastair was Jareth's only saving grace during this torturous visit. He knew how his cousin felt and that he didn't trust his mother or his brother. He also did his best to keep Heidi away from Jareth, as she was constantly trying to seduce him. While taking a walk in the gardens to clear his head, Heidi had practically jumped him and forced a kiss on him. Alastair had walked around the corner just in time to see a very furious Jareth throw her into the fountain before storming off. Alastair, after he managed to stop laughing, had helped her out of the water and escorted her back inside.

Every night after dinner, Jareth escaped to his room and watched Sarah in one of his crystals. He longed to go to her, but feared Ta'leena or one of her spies would follow him. So instead he wrote to her. Cam always returned with a reply from her and each time she would ask when she could see him. Jareth hated that he couldn't give her the answer she wanted. He prayed that this forced visit with his family would soon be over and they could see each other once more.

Chapter Text

After 9 days of not being able to leave Ta'leena's castle, or see his Sarah, Jareth had had enough. After his mandatory breakfast with his family, he snuck out. Alastair spotted the white barn owl flying away and chuckled. He was honestly surprised that his cousin had held out as long as he did. Going back inside, he found Jaxel and recruited his help in preventing High Queen from going balistic when she learned that Jareth had flown the coup.

Jareth wasted no time returning to the Castle beyond the Goblin City. After all that time with his family, he found he felt extremely dirty. So after ensuring that the goblins hadn't caused too much chaos in his absence, the Goblin King locked himself in his quarters and spent the next two hours relaxing in a hot bath. When he was done he felt much better. He was relaxed, clean, and first thing he wanted to do was go see Sarah. Taking a quick glance in a crystal he saw that she was at school. Sighing, he watched her for a while, before he made up his mind. Hurrying to the window, he changed and headed Aboveground.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Sarah was sitting in class pretending to listen to the teacher. She should have been taking notes, but she was too preoccupied with trying to figure out what to buy Jareth for Christmas. Money wasn't much of an issue, thanks to her grandmother, but she still had no clue what to get him. Instead of taking notes, Sarah was doodling on her notebook. There were tiny goblins, an owl, and a pair of eyes that could belong to only one person. As she continued her doodles and brain storming, she was completely unaware of the barn owl that was watching her outside the window.

Jareth sat in the tree watching her. He wanted to swoop in and carry her out of there, but knew she would be furious if he did such a thing. So he waited and watched her. As she changed classes, he followed her from room to room. After not being able to see her for so long, he couldn't stand not being close to her any more. When she was finally done and heading home, he flew just a head and kept an eye out for the right moment to change. Several of her friends walked with her for a long while. Once the last one broke off and headed a different way, he flew to the next large tree and changed. He glamoured himself to look human, just to be safe.

Sarah continued on her way, still in deep thought about Christmas. As she walked by the tree, she kept going, completely ignoring the blonde man leaning against the tree. "I'm hurt Precious." Hearing his voice she stopped and dropped her back pack. Turning around she saw Jareth, still leaning against the tree. "I spend all day watching you sit in that building, looking bored out your mind, and then you walk right by me."

"Jareth." She grinned and rushed over to him. "What are you doing here?" She hugged him.

Returning her hug, he chuckled and held her close. "Where else would I be?" He kissed her forehead and rested his head on top of hers. "I have missed you greatly."

"I missed you too." She let him go and stepped back to look at him. His Fae markings were hidden, but his hair was still long and wild. His clothes weren't as Flashy as normal, but he still stuck out like a sore thumb. "So is this your idea of looking like a normal boy?" She teased.

"Forgive me if I'm not up on the latest Aboveground fashion." He gave a slight bow. "I will be sure to improve my glamour in case it is needed again." He walked over and picked up her backpack. "Shall I escort you home?"

"Well actually..." Sarah hesitated. "Well, I have to pick Toby up."

Jareth nodded. "Of course. Well as I gave my word to stay away from young Tobias, I shall fly ahead and wait by your window then." He took her hand in his and raised it to his lips. "I'll see you soon Precious." He released her hand, placed her backpack down and flew away.

Sarah hurried to the day care to get Toby. Thankfully Toby didn't mind rushing home, in fact he enjoyed running home. He considered it a race. Once they were home, Sarah quickly prepared a snack for Toby, called the goblins and got them all set up in the living room watching a movie. Once she was certain Toby and the goblins would be alright, she hurried up to her room. Closing the bedroom door behind her, she rushed over and opened the window. Jareth flew in immediately and changed. Sarah was happy to see him with out the glamour. After closing the window, she practically tackled him and hugged him tight. "I'm so glad you're alright."

"Of course I am Sarah. I told you as much in my letters." He laughed lightly as he wrapped his arms around her.

"I was still worried." Sarah admitted. "I don't trust the High Queen. You being stuck there worried me."

Jareth smirked and took a chance. Quickly, without hesitation, he swept her off her feet and sat on her bed with her on his lap. "Every moment away from you was torture." He whispered in her ear.

His actions surprised her at first but she was soon smiling and wrapping her arms around his neck. "I missed you too." She kissed his cheek. "So is everything all taken care of?"

"Mostly." He responded. "There's a couple things I must do to make Ta'leena happy, but fear not. I will do what I must to appease her for now." He brushed her hair from her face.

"So does that mean I'm safe?" Sarah asked as she gazed into his eyes.

"Afraid not Precious. Even if Ta'leena assured me that you were safe I wouldn't trust her, but I'll find a way to ensure your safety permanently. For now Vol'Sun will continue hiding you." Sarah nodded and stood up. Jareth watched as she paced the room. "What's on your mind Precious? And don't say nothing. I saw how distracted you were in class. You obviously have something on your mind and since I'm here now its not worry over my absence."

"You were watching me?" Sarah stopped pacing and stared at him.

"Forgive me Sarah. After being away from you for so long I couldn't bare it another minute. I flew to your school and sat outside in my owl form. I know you probably see it as me spying, but it was that or swoop in and carry you out of there. I figured you'd prefer me waiting until you were alone." Jareth explained.

"Yea," She smiled. "Explaining that would have been a disaster." She sat on the chair by her vanity. "I do have a question. It may sound silly, but..."

"What is it Sarah?"

"Well I've been trying to figure out what to get you for Christmas." Sarah said quietly.

Jareth started laughing. "That's what's been troubling you Precious?" He stood and walked over to her, still laughing. "Oh Sarah, you don't need to get anything for me. Having you with me during your break is the greatest gift I could ask for." He cupped her chin and made her look at him. "So no more worrying over this."

"And are you considering my trip to be my gift as well?" Sarah asked with a smirk.

"In part."

"Uh huh, so you were planning on giving me something else weren't you?" Sarah stood to face him.

"I'd give you gifts everyday of the year if it would make you happy dearest." He leaned closer. "Is that what you want Sarah?"

"No, but if you're insisting on other gifts for Christmas I have to give you something too." She put her hands on her hips and stared at him. "No arguments."

He chuckled and shook his head. "As you wish, but allow me to purpose a compromise. One gift each. No stress over how many to get or how much to spend. As for what you can get me, I'll will be thrilled no matter what it is. Don't stress about finding the perfect gift because anything you give me is perfect."

She sighed. "You don't make anything easy to you?" She shook her head. "Anyway, you still have to meet Nanny. So I was thinking I'll stay with Nanny until Christmas Day, that way I can see Toby open his gifts. You can show up around lunch time, meet Nanny and then I'll stay with you until New Year's Day."

"Sounds like you have this all planned out." Jareth smirked.

"Having a plan is good." Sarah said.

"Sometimes, but I find spur of the moment can be fun too." Jareth gave her mischievous grin and then picked her up and held her in his arms.

"Jareth!"

"Shall I carry you away for a while?"

"What?" Sarah looked completely surprised by his actions and words.

"Come have dinner with me at the castle Sarah."

"I can't. Not right now. Toby is downstairs."

Sighing, Jareth nodded and set her down. "Of course. I had forgotten about your brother."

"After Daddy gets home I may be able to slip away." She said with a smile.

He grinned and shook his head. "Always my clever girl."

"Yes, now I should get back downstairs to check on Toby and the goblins."

He nodded. "Yes and I should go prepare for dinner and tend to things that I left for too long while I was at Ta'leena's. Call me when you're ready and I shall come fetch you."

"I can't wait." She gave him a kiss on the cheek and then watched him leave.

~*~*~//..//~*~*~*~

Once her parents were home, Sarah escaped to her room claiming to be feeling ill. She immediately called for Jareth and joined him for dinner while the goblins guarded her room. Jareth had a full table waiting for her when they arrived. They had a peaceful meal with light conversation. Jareth filled her in on what happened at the castle, including his unceremonious tossing Heidi into the fountain. After telling her more about his cousin, Alastair, Sarah expressed an interest in meeting him and other members of his family. Jareth told her he would see about it, but was definitely alright with her meeting Alastair.

After dinner, Jareth took her for a walk around the gardens outside the castle. They talked as they walked and to Jareth it all felt perfect. He hated that he had to take her home. All too soon the night ended and he returned her home and said goodnight. When he returned to the castle, he went to work on catching up on everything he missed while he was away.

Over the next two weeks, Jareth continued preparations for Sarah's visit and continued stealing her away for dinner every chance he got. Meanwhile, Sarah took and passed her finals, managed to get all her Christmas shopping done, and was packed for her trip to her grandmother's. Sarah got more excited with each passing day. Finally winter break started and Sarah and Toby were dropped off at their grandmother's.

The moment her parents left, Sarah suddenly found herself feeling nervous. In less than a week Jareth would be meeting her grandmother and then whisking her away for a week. She wasn't sure what she was more nervous about; Jareth meeting her grandmother or the week in the Underground.
Sarah tried not to let the nerves get the best of her and focused on enjoying the week with her brother. Jareth agreed not to visit until he was to meet her grandmother on Christmas day. Toby was thrilled when it snowed the day after they arrived. He and his sister spent most of the days playing in the snow, playing board games with their grandmother, and reading books.

When Christmas day finally arrived, Sarah was too nervous to eat breakfast. After Toby had eaten and opened his gifts, their grandmother sent him to play with the kids next door. She then sat down with Sarah. "Nervous?"

"A little." Sarah admitted.

"About the trip or having him meet me?" Her grandmother asked half jokingly.

Sarah gave a small laugh. "Well I guess a bit of both. Jareth is... well he's not like any other guy I know. And don't freak out, but he is... well he is a bit older."

"Is that what you're worried about?" Her grandmother laughed. "Sarah do you know how old your grandfather was when he passed away?"

"67 right?"

"That's right and that was 5 years ago. So he would have been 72 this year." Sarah's grandmother said as she looked fondly at the picture on the wall. "Want to take a guess at my age?"

"You're 60 right?"

Sarah's grandmother nodded. "That's right. There was a 12 year gap between your grandfather and I."

"I never realized that." Sarah replied. She understood what her grandmother was getting at, but even so she wasn't sure she would understand Jareth being over 1,000 years older than her.

"Yea, so don't worry. Unlike Irene, I won't freak out about him being a little older than you." She said as she patted Sarah's leg.

Nodding, Sarah played with her medallion. "Thanks Nanny. I should also warn you he's... well his sense of fashion is a little odd."

Giving a hearty laugh, her grandmother stood. "Oh if you could see the things I wore when I was your age." She continued laughing. "Don't worry sweetheart. I won't judge him for his age, how he dresses or how he looks. All I care about is how he treats you." She made a cup of tea for herself and then sat back down. "So why the nervousness for the trip?"

"Well it'll be the first time I'll be staying somewhere with him. Not that I don't trust him, but well its going to be different. I'll be with him all day and night. Not just a short visit." Sarah explained.

"Worried you won't like what you see or that he might not like what he sees?" Her grandmother asked.

"A bit of both I guess." Sarah's hands played with the edge of her shirt.

Setting her cup of tea down, her grandmother took Sarah's hands in hers. "You'll be fine dear. If he's as great as sounds from all you've told me, then I don't think you have anything to worry about. Everyone has their flaws Sarah. You'll have to see his eventually and he'll see yours. Its up to you to decide if they are things you can deal with or if they are things that will come between you. Its all part of being in a relationship."

"Nanny, I told you.."

"You're just friends." Her grandmother interrupted. "Yes I know you keep saying that, but are you trying to convince me of that or yourself?

"What?"

Her grandmother chuckled. "Oh Sarah if only I could show you what your face looks like when you talk about Jareth. You're eyes light up and there's no end to your grin." She placed a finger under Sarah's chin and made her look her in the eye. "Darling I can tell you're smitten with him, even if you won't admit it to yourself. I'm sure this is all new and a bit frightening for you, but don't let your fear and worry prevent you from being more than friends."

Sarah smiled and hugged her grandmother. "Thanks Nanny."

"Anytime Sarah." She kissed her forehead and held her tight. "So when is your fella supposed to get here?"

Sarah looked out the window as her hand unconsciously gripped the medallion around her neck. "Jareth should be here soon. He said he'd be here around noon."

No sooner had the words left her mouth than the doorbell rang. "That must be him." Her grandmother stated as she stood. "He is either magic or had and excellent sense of timing."

Sarah couldn't help but chuckle at the comment. She followed her grandmother to the front door. She wasn't sure what to expect. Jareth had promised his glamour would be more appropriate than the last time, but what she saw took her completely by surprise. When her grandmother opened the door, there stood a younger looking Jareth in a 3 piece suit with a golden tie. The tie clip was a smaller version of his medallion. His normally long and wild hair was shorter and very neat. While his Fae marking were hidden, he hadn't bothered changing his eyes. "Hello." He grinned the moment he saw Sarah. "You must be Sarah's grandmother."

Sarah stepped forward. "Nanny this is Jareth. Jareth this is my grandmother."

Jareth nodded and held his hand out to her. "A pleasure to meet you. Sarah has told me wonderful things about you."

Her grandmother held her hand out to his and grinned. "Yes I've heard wonderful things about you too."

Jareth took her hand and kissed it. "Its clear to see Sarah gets her charm from your side of the family."

Laughing lightly, Sarah's grandmother shook her head. "Sarah did tell me you were a charmer. Please come in."

Jareth followed Sarah into the living room and sat beside her on the couch. "Hope you didn't have any trouble getting here with all the snow. I was worried it might delay you, but Sarah didn't seem worried."

"Ah, yes well Sarah knows I'd do what ever is needed to be here for her. Weathering a little snow is no exception." Jareth said as he looked at Sarah.

Sarah gave him a gentle smile and patted his arm. "Never doubted it for a minute."

"So where are you taking my Sarah? Or is that a surprise?" Her grandmother inquired.

"Well we'll be going to my home for a bit. I need to make sure everything is in order with my job before I dash off on holiday." Jareth replied.

"Oh, what do you for work?"

Sarah eyed him carefully, waiting for his answer. "Oh well I work with various groups that help rescue children from bad conditions and find proper homes for them." He stated simply.

"That's sounds like quite a job, especially for someone your age, but one worth doing. Its always wonderful to see young people helping others." He grandmother grinned. "Can I get you anything Jareth? A cup of tea or a glass of eggnogg?"

"A cup of tea would be lovely." Jareth replied with a smile. Once her grandmother was in the other room he turned to Sarah and hugged her. "You look radiant Precious." he whispered before kissing her cheek.

"You don't look half bad yourself." She teased. "Have to admit you clean up quite nicely." She ran her fingers through his short hair. "I could get used to this look."

"Do you prefer this appearance?"

She shook her head. "No, I like you just the way you are. I'm just saying I also like the human look on you."

He chuckled and let her go and took her hand in his. "I'm glad it pleases you Precious." He placed a gentle kiss on her hand and then gave it a gentle squeeze.

A moment later, Sarah's grandmother returned with a cup of tea for Jareth. She smiled seeing the two holding hands. "Here you go Jareth." She walked over to the two, who separated the moment they realized she was back. "I do hope its to your liking."

Jareth took the cup from her and gave her a soft smile. "I'm sure its perfect." He sipped it slowly and nodded. "Mmmm yes just as I thought."

Sarah's grandmother sat across from them and observed them carefully. "So Jareth, Sarah tells me you live some distance from her. Where exactly do you live?"

"Well I travel quite a bit so home is a relative term at the moment." Jareth looked to Sarah. They had gone over several things he was to tell her grandmother if asked, and this wasn't one of them.

Sarah quickly realized his dilemma and spoke up. "Jareth's originally from England, but as he said he does travel a lot. So whenever he is nearby he lets me know and we meet up if we can."

"How did you two meet?"

"Oh, well I was in the area a few years ago and while waiting for a meeting I was scheduled to be at I came across a lovely little park and while I was there I saw a very enchanting young lady there. She was reciting lines from a story." Jareth explained with a silly grin on his face.

"So you decided to just talk to her?"

"No, no. I... well it sounds a little weird and perhaps even slightly stalkerish, but I just watched her. I went back to that park each day that I was in town hoping to see her. I never knew the stories she was acting out, but her portrayal of the characters were magnificent." Jareth looked at Sarah as he described watching her.

"Oh, stop it." Sarah giggled. "I was horrible."

"Nonsense Precious. You don't just recite lines. You become the character." Jareth placed his hand over hers.

"So if you just watched her, how did you two end up talking?"

Sarah quickly jumped in to answer that. "Well one day when I went to the park with Merlin, I found a book sitting on the bench that I usually had Merlin sit on. It had a note with my name on it."

"It was a story I thought Sarah would like." Jareth added.

"And I did. Its still my favorite story." She smiled at him.

Sarah's grandmother smiled at their interactions; the looks, the way he placed his hand on her. She recognized the signs very well. "So you gave a girl you didn't know a gift?"

"Well I was hoping she'd like it and maybe even act it out, which she did and well after seeing her play the role of my favorite heroine I knew I had to get to know her and I didn't have to wait long. Dear Sarah was the one who called out to me." Jareth was still looking at Sarah and his hand was now holding Sarah's and his thumb was rubbing gentle circles on the back of her hand.

"Well I wanted to know who had given me that book." Sarah replied.

"I'm guessing this book is the one you told me about? The one with the magical King?" Her grandmother asked.

Sarah looked at her grandmother. "Yes. The Goblin King." Her hand that wasn't being held by the King, was holding onto the medallion.

"Sounds like quite a book." Her grandmother was grinning from ear to ear. "I may have to read this book. Or maybe I should have you two act it out for me."

"Well not sure if I'm able to play the part of any of the characters in the book, but I know Sarah can." He gave Sarah a mischievous grin. "Why don't you give your grandmother a little of the story."

"Oh no, I'm sure Nanny doesn't want to see my horrible acting." Sarah's face was beginning to turn red.

"Oh Sarah, I'd love to hear some of this story you two seem to love so. I haven't seen you act out anything since you were little." Her grandmother was on her feet and moving the coffee table to the side. "Please, and Jareth why don't you act out the King? I believe you can pull off royalty."

"Very well." He grinned. "Sarah why don't you tell her the beginning and give her the basic plot. Tell her like you told it to young Toby and myself."

"You've met Toby?" Sarah's grandmother looked confused. "Sarah asked that Toby not be here because she didn't want him getting attached and pestering you."

Sarah panicked. She had asked that Toby not be there when Jareth arrived, but it was for a much different reason. She worried that Toby would recognize Jareth. Before she could come up with a reply, Jareth came to her rescue. "Oh no, Sarah has yet to give me the pleasure of seeing young Toby. She told me she used to tell this story to him at bed time. I asked her to tell it to me, just as she had to him. I wanted to know if she acted it out like she did in the park."

"I see. Well Sarah, let's hear it. Tell me the story of the Goblin King." Her grandmother sat down and waited for her to tell the tale.

Shaking her head at Jareth, Sarah stood and started at the beginning. "Once upon a time, there was a beautiful young girl whose stepmother always made her stay home with the baby. And the baby was a spoiled child, and wanted everything to himself, and the young girl was practically a slave. But what no one knew is that the King of the goblins had fallen in love with the the girl."

"Madly." Jareth interjected.

"What?" Sarah stopped and looked at him.

"The King had fallen madly in love with the girl." He smirked. "Just wanted to make sure you got the story correct."

Sarah turned her head, unable to stand his gaze. She continued telling the story and when needed, Jareth stepped up to play his part. Sarah swore he was purposely being more seductive than he was when it really happened. When they got to the final confrontation, Sarah hadgiven the short version of the story skipping anything that wasn't important, Jareth hesitated. Sarah was certain he didn't want to do this part and frankly neither did she. "I think we should end it here." Sarah said as she sat on the couch.

Jareth nodded and sat beside her. "I agree."

"Ah, but it was getting good. What happens once she gets to the castle?" Sarah's grandmother had become engrossed in the story.

"I could always lend you my copy of the book Nanny." Sarah suggested.

"Or I could get you your own." Jareth added.

"Either sounds good to me. I do love a good book." She smiled and stood up. "Well I think I've held you two up long enough. I'm sure you have plans."

Jareth stood. "Yes, we should be going."

Sarah nodded and headed for the stairs. "I'll grab my things."

Her grandmother watched her hurry upstairs and once she was out of sight she turned to Jareth. "I see the way you look at her. I'm no fool. I know you see her as more than a friend. I believe she feels the same for you, and I'm happy for both of you. Just know this. Sarah is my dearest granddaughter and I won't let you or anyone else hurt her."

Jareth bowed his head. "Understood. And believe me, hurting Sarah is the last thing I would ever do. I also want to thank you for trusting me with her care for the week."

"Sarah is a grown woman. I trust her judgement. If she trusts you, then so do I. Don't make either of us regret that."

Before Jareth could reply, Sarah came bouncing down the stairs with her bag. "Ready when you are."

Turning to face her, Jareth couldn't help but smile at how excited she was. "Then let's be off." He held his hand out to her.

Taking his hand, Sarah looked to her grandmother. "I'll see you in a week Nanny."

"Be safe you two." She said as she walked them to the door.

"We will Nanny. Don't worry. I'll be perfectly safe with Jareth." Sarah assured her. She hugged her grandmother.

"I'm sure you will, but I'm your grandmother and I will still worry." She kissed her cheek and then watched her walk with Jareth to the silver car parked in the driveway.

Once inside the car, Jareth turned to Sarah. "Hope you're ready Precious. The goblins are eagerly awaiting your arrival."

"Well let's not keep them waiting." She said with a smile. Jareth nodded and put the car in drive. Once it was far enough down the road, where it wouldn't be seen, it vanished along with its passengers.

Chapter Text

Sarah and Jareth arrived in the throne room soon after leaving her grandmother's house. The moment they arrived the goblins started cheering. "Lady!"

Sarah smiled as she looked around the room at all the smiling goblins. "Hi everyone."

Jareth sat on the throne and let his subjects greet Sarah. After a couple of minutes he spoke up. "Enough. The Lady Sarah will be here for a while. Give her some space."

"Yes Kingy." The goblins backed away and they all smiled up at her.

Sarah placed her bag down and looked around. "Well I wasn't expecting so many of you to be here to greet me. I only have gifts for 5 of you."

"Lady gots us gifts?" Dusty stepped forward.

"Of course I did. Since we aren't at my house this year so I can bake you cookies I made sure to get each of you something. I feel bad for not having something for the rest of you though."

"It ok Lady." Said a grey goblin with a pasta strainer on his head.

"Yea, we happys to has you here." A second goblin added.

"I believe we are all my Lady." a voice said from behind her.

Turning quickly Sarah's face lit up when she saw Sir Didymus, Hoggle, and Ludo. "Hi guys!" She rushed over to hug them.

"Hi Sarah." Hoggle smiled as she hugged him, though his eyes were on Jareth.
"Don't worry Hogbrain. Sarah is free to hug all of you." Jareth said as he lounged on the throne, one leg draped over the side.

"And why wouldn't I be able to hug my friends?" Sarah asked with a glare in the King's direction.

"Relax Precious. Hogbrain seems to think my threat from years ago still stands." Jareth replied.

"Oh, you mean the making him a Prince if I kiss him threat?" Sarah watched him carefully.

"Yes that threat, which you and I have already discussed." Jareth gave her a smug grin. "Though I do believe you'd rather kiss a King than a Prince. Right Precious?"

She knew he was teasing her and seeing what kind of reaction he could get. Well two could play at that game. "I don't know. Princes can be just as good." Then she quickly leaned down and kissed Hoggle's cheek. Jareth simple watched, his lips pressed together in a thin line. "Now I feel even worse. I didn't even think about you guys being here. I really should have realized there would more than Jareth and my five goblins here."

"No be sad Sarwah." Ludo said before hugging her.

"He's right my Lady." Didymus said. "We're thrilled just to have you here for the celebration."

"Celebration?" Sarah looked at Jareth. "But Yule was days ago."

"Well as we knew you would be joining us, we agreed to hold off on the usual celebration until today so that you could be here with us." Jareth said with a smirk. "Besides the goblins are usually blackout drunk by now. Couldn't have you arriving to see that mess."

"Kingy say we has Christmas for Lady!" Patch exclaimed.

"Christmas! Christmas!" All the goblins started cheering.

Jareth stood and the room grew silent. "First I believe I have a solution to Sarah's dilemma of no gifts for everyone."

"Oh?" Sarah eyed him suspiciously.

He grinned. "Yes, you can use the kitchen and bake treats for them."

"Treats!" Several goblins cried.

Sarah chuckled. "Alright. I can do that."

"Sarah's five goblins, please take your Lady to the kitchen and get her what ever she needs." Jareth ordered.

"This way Lady!" Dusty called as he headed for the door.

Sarah walked over to Jareth with a smile on her face. "So how many am I baking for?"

"At least 300 goblins and your friends." He replied calmly.

"Is that all?" She inquired as she leaned closer.

"I believe that is enough."

"So no cookies for the King?" She teased.

Jareth smirked. "I won't say no to a plate with my name on it."

Leaning over, Sarah kissed his cheek. "Maybe." She grinned at his reaction and hurried to follow the goblins to the kitchen.

Jareth had a silly grin on his face as he watched her leave. The goblins that were still in the room watched their King. "Kingy happy?" One brave goblin asked.

The King looked to the goblin, still smiling. "Yes. I'm very happy." He looked around the room. "Now let's do a little decorating, shall we?"

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

Luckily for Sarah, the castle's kitchen was equipped with an oven large enough to bake over 100 cookies at once. In a couple hours she had over 1,000 cookies made. Her five goblins were a tremendous help and she rewarded them with being the first to have cookies. Sarah made a plate and wrapped it in white paper and had Cam sneak it into her bag while she and the others carried trays of cookies to the throne room.

Sarah stopped when she saw the room. There was garland hanging all over the room and all the goblins were wearing Santa hats. She started laughing when she saw the goblins dancing around singing horrible renditions of carrels. Jareth was sitting on his throne with a gift on his lap. Sarah walked over to him. "What is all this?"

"Goblin version of Christmas." He replied. "Come here."

Sarah sat the cookies down so the goblins could get them, which they did the moment she let go of the plate. Walking over slowly, she eyed the box on his lap. "So who is the gift for?"

Picking up the box, Jareth tilted his head and smirked. "Why don't you come see for yourself?" He patted his leg, silently inviting her to sit. He waited and watched her to see if she would take him up on his offer.

Smirking, Sarah grabbed a hat from one of the goblins and promptly sat on the King's lap. "If you want to play Santa," Sarah placed the hat on his head, "you need the hat."

He laughed lightly and shook his head. "Oh Precious, what ever am I going to do with you?"

"You could start by giving me my present." She smiled at him innocently.

He took a deep breath. "Oh you are going to drive me crazy all week aren't you?" He handed her the box. "Here's your first gift, but its not from me."

Looking at him confused, Sarah took the box. "To Sarah. From Hoggle." She looked around. "Where is Hoggle?"

"Preparing a surprise for you. He knows you're opening the gift now, so don't worry." He assured her.

Nodding, she opened the gift. Inside was a long, green, hand made scarf. "Its beautiful." She wrapped it around her neck.

"Looks good on you too." He said as he wrapped his arms around her waist.

"Lady!"

Sarah looked to see a goblin offering her a goblet. "Oh, no thanks." She smiled at him.

"Its not Ale dearest. Its apple cider." Jareth informed her. "Fear not, I have no intention of getting you drunk."

Sarah took the goblet and thanked the goblin. After taking a sip she looked at Jareth. "Are you planning on drinking?" Sarah asked. She still remembered what happened the last time he drank heavily.

"I'll be sticking to Cider as well." He replied. He took the goblet from her hand and handed it to Cam. He pulled Sarah closer and nuzzled her neck. "So are there any treats for me?"

"I may have set some cookies aside for you." She wrapped her arms around his neck. "Since you let me open Hoggle's gift now, but not yours; I'm guessing you have a plan for the evening. Something that I'll be needing my new scarf for."

Jareth grinned. "Clever girl. Yes there is a plan for tonight and you'll have to wait. First why don't you give your goblins their gifts? I'll wait for mine seeing I already have the greatest gift in the world."

"And what is that?" Sarah was certain she knew what he would say, but she still wanted to hear him say it.

"Why having you here with me of course." He smiled and kissed her cheek. "What else could I possibly want?"

Sarah smiled and gazed into his eyes. "I might know a few things you may want." She teased.

"Oh? Do tell Precious, especially if they are things I may get soon."

Sarah pulled away and stood. "You'll just have to wait Goblin King." She smirked. "You've got a whole week to find out." She winked at him and went to her bag and pulled out the gifts for the goblins. "Goblin Five." She called.

"Evil temptress." Jareth mumbled as he watched her five goblins rush to her side.

"Yes Lady?" Patch inquired as Sarah sat on the floor with them.

"I wanted to give you your gifts." She handed the first one to Flower.

"Lady didn't has to gets us gifts." Flower said as she started opening the gift. Her little face lit up when she saw the new flower print dress inside the box. "Did Lady makes this?"

"Wish I had, but I was short on time. I saw it at the story and it looked like your size. I hope it fits, if not I can take it back next week and get something else." Sarah explained.

"If its not the correct size I can fix it with magic Sarah." Jareth called from his throne.

"I hadn't thought of that." She admitted. "Thanks Jareth." She smiled at him and watched him for a moment before handing the next gift to Patch.

"For me?" He took the box and quickly opened it. "Wow!" He started jumping up and down with joy when he saw the new quilt. It was all different colored patches sewn together. "Thanks Lady!" He hugged her and then wrapped the quilt around himself.

"You're welcome. Your turn Dusty." She handed the next box to the green goblin.

Dusty slowly opened the box and chuckled at the gift. It was a personal grooming kit, complete with soap, shampoo, brush, comb, and cologne. "Lady wants me to smell nice?"

"Not saying you smell bad, but you even said yourself that you liked my nice smelling things. I thought you'd like having your own." Sarah said quickly, hoping he wasn't unhappy with the gift.

"I loves it Lady!" He opened the cologne and sprayed it on himself. "Now I smells good."

"Good. I'm glad you like it Dusty. You're up next Grunt." She handed him his gift. Grunt took it and opened it carefully. Inside was a bag of shiny marbles. Grunt grinned and made what Sarah hoped were happy sounds. He dropped the bag and practically tackled her. Laughing she hugged him back. "I take it you like them?" Grunt pulled back and nodded his head like crazy. "Good. I'm glad." Grunt hugged her again and then picked up the marbled and sat down and admired them.

"My turn Lady?" Cam asked as he looked at her with hopeful eyes.

"It certainly is." She handed the last package to Cam.

Cam ripped the wrapping paper off excitedly and tossed the lid over his head. Even Jareth had to chuckle at the little goblin's enthusiasm. Inside the box was a belt with lots of pouches attached to it. He held it up and looked at it with a look of confusion. "What is it Lady?"

Jareth stood and walked over to get a better look. "Is that a belt?"

Sarah nodded and took the belt from Cam. "Yes its a belt." She helped Cam put it on. "I thought it might be useful since you always send him on missions. It has lots of pockets he can put things in."

"Very clever Sarah." Jareth knelt by Cam to examine the belt. "What do you think my little spy?"

"I loves it!" Cam said as he bounced up and down.

"I'm glad you all love your gifts." Sarah smiled and hugged each goblin in turn.

"What's about Kingy?" Flower asked.

"Yea, Lady gots gift for Kingy?" Patch asked.

Jareth watched her with an amused grin. "Yes what about me Sarah?"

She shook her head. "The King will get his gift later. He's got some grand plan for tonight and I don't want to spoil it. So when he decides its time for me to get my gift from him, I'll give him his gift as well."

Jareth chuckled. "Very well Precious." He stood and held his hand out to Sarah. She took it and he helped her to her feet. "So, tell me Sarah what is your favorite Christmas song?"

"Why?" She eyed him suspiciously as he led her back towards the throne.

"Just answer the question Sarah." He sat and pulled her onto his lap.

"Well I love just about anything by Bing Crosby." She chuckled at Jareth's look and started to explain. "He's a..."

"I know who he is. I just never took you for a fan of his."

"And what did you expect?" Sarah ran her hands up his chest.

"Jaye Kingston perhaps?" He said with a smirk. "I did see one of his albums in your room."

She smiled. "Yea I do like his music. Sadly he's never put out a Christmas album."

"I'll have to fix that." Jareth mumbled.

"What was that?"

"Nothing Precious." Jareth smiled. "What other singers do you like? Ones that sing Christmas songs preferably."

"Well..." She thought about it a moment.

"Lady really like the song with Bing and Space man." Dusty stated.

"Space man?" Jareth looked at the goblin and then at Sarah.

"He means Starman and that would be David Bowie."

"Ah yes, I've heard of Bowie." He smiled and pulled her closer. "So who's voice is better? Bowie or Kingston?" He whispered in her ear.

"What?" She pulled back and looked confused. "I like both. Not sure if I think one is better than the other. Why all the musical questions suddenly?"

"Just curious." He sighed. "I was hoping to sing your favorite Christmas song for you, but you're making that difficult."

"Sorry." She smiled. "That's sweet, but I have a better idea." Grinning she sat up straight. "I'm dreaming of a white Christmas, just like the ones I used to know, may your days be merry and bright..." As Sarah continued singing, the goblins all got quiet and gathered around the King's throne to listen.

Jareth was grinning from ear to ear as he listened to her sing. When the song was done, the room filled with cheers and the sound of all the goblins clapping. "Beautiful Precious."

"Sing more Lady!" One goblin cried.

"Lady has pretty voice." Another added.

"More!" The goblins chanted.

Jareth held up a hand and quieted the goblins. "Enough, Lady Sarah will sing if she wishes to. He glanced behind him at the clock. "But it will have to wait. I believe its time." He nodded to Dusty, who rushed out the door carrying Sarah's bag.

"Time for what?"

Jareth stood, with Sarah in his arms. "Time for your surprise." He set her down and turned to the goblins. "Alright all of you know the drill. You're welcome to all the food and Ale in grand hall. Don't burn the place down. Lady Sarah and I will return in a few days."

"Party!" The goblins wasted no time getting into the Ale.

"Where are we going?"

"You'll see Precious." Jareth took her hand and led her to the door. Once outside, Sarah saw Hoggle sitting at the front of a horse drawn carriage, Thunder and Luna were harnessed in the front. "You once asked me where I fly off to during Yule, well I'd like to show you, but since you can't fly I thought a nice ride through the Kingdom would be pleasant."

"Sounds wonderful." She smiled and kissed his cheek. He held his arm out to her and she took it. He led her to the carriage and opened the door for her. She let go of his arm and climbed up to where Hoggle was sitting with the reins in his hands. "Thanks for the scarf Hoggle. I love it." She hugged him and climbed back down.

Jareth helped Sarah in the carriage and the climbed in after her. She sat by the door and looked out the window. Jareth sat by her and wrapped an arm around her shoulder. "Ready?"

"Ready." Sarah smiled and leaned against him.

Jareth signaled Hoggle and the carriage left, heading for Jareth's winter home. The ride was long, but neither Jareth nor Sarah seemed to mind. Jareth pointed out various points of interest as the past them and Sarah was smiling and laughing the whole way. When they headed up the mountain and the air became colder, he wrapped his cloak around them both. By the time they reached the secret retreat it was almost dark and Sarah was starting to feel tired and hungry.

"Please tell me we're almost there." She said as she pulled the cloak tighter around her and snuggled further into his arms.

"Something wrong Precious?" Jareth asked, he hoped the carriage ride hadn't been a bad idea.

"I'm getting really hungry, and a little tired." She admitted.

He nodded. "Fear not Sarah. Food will be waiting for you when we arrive and a room has been prepared for you. Its just a little further." He assured her.

"You still haven't told me where we're going."

Smiling, he pointed out the window. "We're going there, to my winter home." Sarah looked and saw a large house that looked like it was built into the mountain. "Only a few people know about it, and you're the first I've ever brought here."

She looked at him and was at a loss of what to say. "Its beautiful." She whispered.

He brushed her hair from her face and gazed into her eyes. "Not as beautiful as you." As he leaned
towards her, planning on kissing her, the carriage suddenly came to a halt and they were thrown forward. Jareth held on to her and prevented her from falling from the seat. "Hogbrain what are you doing?"

"Sorry your Highness." Hoggle called. "There's someone here."

"What?" Jareth climbed out of the carriage and looked to see someone standing in front of the carriage, grinning from ear to ear. "Oh no." He groaned.

"What's wrong Jareth?" Sarah asked as she climbed out.

"Oh don't look so down cousin. I told you I'd be by to see you."

Jareth gritted his teeth. "I assumed you meant at the castle."

Sarah stood behind Jareth, peering over his shoulder. "Ah, so this is the lovely Lady Sarah." Alastair stood in front of them grinning like a fool. "So happy to finally meet you."

Chapter Text

"Well cousin, aren't you going to introduce us?" Alastair asked.

Sighing, Jareth stepped aside so he could see Sarah better. "Sarah this is Alastair, my cousin. Cousin this is my Sarah."

Sarah stepped forward and held her hand out to him. "Pleasure to meet you. Jareth told me about you and how you warned him about the High Queen. Thank you for that."

Alastair took her hand and placed a kiss on it, earning him a glare from Jareth. "The pleasure is all mine my dear. Jareth was reluctant but I finally got him to tell me about you. I have to say you're more beautiful than he led me to believe."

Sarah blushed slightly at his compliment. "I should have expected Jareth's cousin to be a charmer like him."

Jareth wrapped an arm around her waist, protectively. "Yes well it was nice of you to stop by Alastair. I promised my Sarah food when we arrived, so we'll be heading inside. Have a safe trip home." He said as he tried ushering Sarah past his cousin and to the front door.

"Food sounds wonderful." Alastair said as he followed. "Thinking about it now, I haven't eaten all day."

"Would you like to join us for dinner Alastair?" Sarah asked.

Jareth gritted his teeth. "I'm sure my cousin has somewhere to be." He glared at Alastair hoping he would just go away.

"Nonsense cousin. I'd love to join you two for dinner." He took Sarah's hand and pulled her away from Jareth and headed for the door. "I'll tell you all about the time Jareth got lost in the hedge maze at the main palace."

"Jareth? Lost in a maze?" Sarah chuckled.

Jareth groaned and pinched the bridge of his nose. "I'll bog him. I'm going to bog the bastard." He walked over to the carriage and looked at Hoggle. "Take Sarah's bag inside and then take the carriage back to the castle. Please make sure the goblins don't get too out of hand. I'll be back New Year's Eve to prepare for the ball."

"Yes your majesty." Hoggle said before climbing down.

"Oh wow!" Sarah exclaimed.

Hearing her, Jareth rushed to catch up and see what was going on. "What is it Precious?"

Sarah was standing in the doorway of the house with Alastair. She was looking around the room, her eyes practically glowing. She turned to look at Jareth. "Its beautiful. Its just how I always imagined I would decorate for the holidays. How did you know the colors I would use or the kind of decorations?"

Jareth smirked and took her hands in his. "I didn't think you'd mind the goblins giving me ideas on how to make things perfect for you."

She looked around at the garland hung perfectly all over, the holly, the tree, and even the elves and reindeer that decorated the house. "I love it. Thanks Jareth." She kissed his cheek and hugged him.

"You're very welcome Sarah." He wrapped his arms around her. "Now come on. I'm sure you're starving."

Jareth led her and Alastair to the dinning hall where, as he promised, a grand feast was waiting. As they ate, Alastair had a blast trying to embarrass his cousin in front of Sarah by telling her stories from their childhood. How he got lost in the hedge maze, the first time he tried to fence, and his first failed attempt at wooing a girl. Sarah found them all amusing and every time Jareth tried to stop the stories, she begged for another. All she had to to was give him that sweet smile and say, "I like hearing about your childhood. It helps me know more how you became the man you are now." After that he couldn't refuse her anything, though he did vow to bog Alastair later, multiple times.

After dinner, much to Jareth's pleasure, Alastair decided it was time for him to leave. "I've interrupted my cousin's plans enough. I'm sure he didn't bring you all the way out her to be entertained by stories of his youth."

"Well I had a wonderful time. I'm glad I got to meet you Alastair." Sarah said as they walked him to the door.

"Yes, it was an unexpected surprise to see you cousin." Jareth grumbled. "I trust you won't reveal the location of my winter home to anyone."

"Of course not Jareth. You're secret little love nest will stay secret." Alastair teased. I'm just glad I got here before you did. Otherwise I may have interrupted something and I'm sure my life would have ended."

"Its not like that Alastair." Sarah stated. "Jareth and I are just friends."

He looked at his cousin who was still giving him death glares. "My apologies Lady Sarah. From the way he spoke of you I thought for sure he was courting you, which if he's not then perhaps you would consider allowing me..."

"Alastair..." Jareth warned.

"Sorry cousin." He bowed his head to Jareth. "But I shall be off. You two enjoy your holiday and if Jareth gets to be too much for you, feel free to call for assistance."

Laughing lightly, Sarah shook her head. "I don't think that will be necessary, but thanks for the offer. I do believe I can handle the Goblin King though."

"I'm sure you can my Lady." Alastair bowed to the both and walked out. He stopped and turned back. "Oh and I almost forgot. I noticed you were missing a very important decoration, so I corrected that."

"What decoration?" Sarah asked. Alastair pointed up. Looking up, Jareth groaned. Sarah smiled seeing the plant. "Mistletoe."

"You're welcome cousin!" Alastair called as he ran off, hoping to avoid anything Jareth might throw at him.

Sarah chuckled as she watched him leave. "It wasn't so bad. I think you're lucky to have him as your cousin."

"Yes compared to the rest of my family I suppose he is tolerable." Sighing, Jareth turned to look at her. "I'm sorry about his additional decoration. I purposely avoided hanging any. I didn't want..."

"Shh.." Sarah placed a finger on his lips. "Its fine Jareth. Mistletoe is a standard holiday decoration and yes I'm very aware of what you're supposed to do when standing under it, like we are now."

"We don't have to..."

"Its a tradition and I'm not one for breaking traditions, especially enjoyable ones." She smiled.

Jareth shook his head and smirked. "You'll hear no arguments from me." He pulled her into his arms and kissed her. She wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed him back, her fingers playing with the hair on the back of his neck. As a shiver ran down his spine, Jareth pulled back and looked into her eyes. "Sarah." He practically purred her name.

She gazed into his eyes and smiled. "Jareth. I..." She hesitated, but it didn't matter. Jareth took her lack of talking as a chance to kiss her again. He moved his lips over hers slowly as his hands ran up and down her back.

He kissed along her jaw up to her ear. "Oh Sarah," He kissed her ear and held her close. "Tell me to stop before I loose control." He kept kissing down her neck, his hands slowly going lower and lower down her body.

"Jareth." Sarah sighed. "We..." She tried to form a coherent sentence, but he was making it hard for her to think, much less speak. "We... we should stop."

Taking a deep breath, Jareth closed his eyes and let her go. "You're right." He took several deep breaths to try and get himself under control. "Let's head back inside." He went in before her and inwardly cursed himself for letting himself get out of control.

Sarah followed inside, closing the door behind her. They walked to the sitting area and Jareth sat by the fire place. She stood in front of him and watched him for a moment. "Everything alright?"

Jareth nodded. "Yes, sorry. I just need a minute." He wouldn't make eye contact with her. "Why don't you open your gifts? They're under the tree."

"Where's my bag?" She asked, suddenly remembering it.

"Hoggle placed it over there." Jareth said as he pointed to the window by the tree.

Sarah rushed over and pulled two things from the bag, the plate of cookies and Jareth's gift. Smiling and walked over to him with both items behind her back. "Well if you're going to watch me open gifts, why not enjoy these while you do it?" She held the plate out to him.

Jareth smiled and took the cookies. "So you did save some for me."

"Did you really think I wouldn't? I know how much you love sweets." Sarah smiled and went to the Christmas tree and grabbed the packages that were under it. She carried them over to where Jareth was and sat on the floor in front of him. "How are the cookies?"

"Delicious." He was grinning as he stuffed another one in his mouth. Once he swallowed it he looked at her. "There are chairs Precious. You don't need to sit on the floor."
"Its another tradition. Toby and I always sit on the floor when opening gifts, though we are usually in our pjs." Sarah explained.

"Would it make you happier to be in your sleep clothes?" Jareth asked as he moved to sit on the floor beside her.

"Its fine. I'm not ready for bed so not point in changing."

Jareth summoned a crystal and tossed it up. When the shower of glitter cleared, Sarah was in a warm pair of pjs and Jareth was in a pair of black satin sleep pants and a black shirt that wasn't buttoned. "I'm not going to be the one that breaks your family traditions." He smirked.

She shook her head. "Alright." She picked up the smallest package and started to open it.

Jareth grabbed it from her and placed it down. "Open that one last Precious."

"There's even an order to opening my gifts?" She questioned.

"Just where this one is concerned. The rest can be in any order." Jareth answered as he grabbed another cookie.

She grabbed one of the other 3 gifts and opened it. "To Lady from the gobbies." She read the messy handwriting on the poorly wrapped gift. When the paper was torn away, Sarah stared at the gift, unsure of what it was. Their was a circle with lots of shiny rocks glued on and invy vines wrapped around it. "I'm not really sure..."

Jareth started laughing when he saw it. Once he managed to stop, he took a deep breath. "First I want you to know I didn't put them up to it in any way shape or form. I had no idea until you opened it what they made. All I knew was they asked for craft supplies and pretty paper to wrap your gift in."

"Jareth what is this?"

"I believe they've made you a crown." He smirked.

Sarah stared at the gift and then started laughing. "Wow, never expected the goblins to try and set me up."

"Perhaps they know something we don't." He said as he leaned back against the chair behind him.

"Perhaps." She whispered. She grabbed the next gift and tried to ignore what he and the goblin's gift were implying. "To my Lady from Sir Didymus." She tore the paper off and smiled seeing the gift. It was a beautiful dagger in a leather sheath. "This is gorgeous." She pulled it from the sheath to examine it.

"I guess our little knight thought you needed extra protection." Jareth mused.

"I'll have to thank him properly for this when I see him." She put the dagger back in the sheath and grabbed the next gift. "To Sarwah from Ludo." Inside the box was a bracelet with a large black stone in the middle. "Is that an onyx?"

Jareth examined the stone and smirked. "No something far more valuable. Place your hand on it and say solas."

She looked at him with a confused expression, but did as he said. "Solas." Suddenly the black stone lit up and filled the room with a bright light. "That's amazing."

He reached over and touched the stone and the light vanished and the stone turned black again. "Its a light stone. Very rare and hard to find, but if anyone could get a hold of one it would be your rock caller friend."

Sarah put the bracelet on and admired it. "These are the best gifts I've ever gotten."

Jareth smirked. "Well here's what I hope is the best one of all." He handed her the last gift, which had no name on it.

"I'm guessing this is my gift from you?" Sarah asked. He nodded and she sat it down. She grabbed the package she had been keeping out of his view. "How about you open yours first?"

"Alright Precious." Jareth took the package from her and carefully unwrapped it. He pulled the lid off the box and sat it on the floor. Pulling the tissue paper aside, his eyes lit up and he looked at Sarah and then back at the gift. "Are these..."

She smiled. "Yes, they are." She pulled out a pair of white satin gloves with barn owls on the bottom. She turned the gloves over and showed him the underside. "Even got it monogrammed."

"JGK?" He looked at her. "I wasn't aware that I had a middle name."

"Jareth Goblin King." Sarah explained. "They wouldn't do anything less than three letters. I couldn't think of anything else. I know names can have power so I didn't think you'd want..."

Jareth leaned in and quickly kissed her. "I love them Precious. They're perfect." He cupped her chin and looked into her green eyes. "Just like you." He kissed her again, this time he allowed himself to deepen the kiss and put all his emotion into it. After a moment he forced himself to pull back. "Thank you Sarah."

Smiling she touched his face. "You're welcome. I'm glad you like them."

He turned his head and kissed her palm. "I love them darling." He sat back and handed her his gift once more. "Open it."

Sarah took the package and opened it with the same care he has used when opening hers. When she removed the lid, she dropped it and covered her mouth with her hand. "Oh my gosh!" She looked at Jareth, who was smiling at her. "Jareth." She looked at the gift and tears welled up in her eyes. "I...I don't know what to say."

He reached over and pulled the necklace from the box. "Turn around." Sarah put the box down and turned her back to him. He draped the necklace over her and Sarah moved her hair out of the way so he could fasten it. "There. Now let me see how it looks on you."

She quickly wiped her eyes and turned to face him. "Jareth this is too much. I don't..."

"Shh.." he put a finger on her lips. "It suits you. The emeralds are almost as lovely as your eyes." He picked up the box and handed it to her. "Put in the earrings."

She nodded and tried to keep her emotions in check. She picked up on earring and examined it closely. "They're gorgeous. You really shouldn't have." She put the first earring in and grabbed the second.

He watched her put in the second and grinned. "I told you, I enjoy spoiling you and I'd do anything to see you smile." He summoned a crystal and handed it to her. The minute she took it, it turned into a mirror. "Have a look."

Sarah held the mirror up and examined herself. The emeralds sparkled in the light and she could have sworn her eyes were sparkling too. "Incredible, but Jareth where am I going to wear them? I'd be afraid of losing them or damaging them."

"Really Precious? Did you think I wouldn't enchant them? They will always appear in what ever box or bag you decide is there home." Jareth said as he grabbed the crown the goblins made. "And the jewels can't be damaged by normal wear and tear and they will never dull." He placed the crown on her head. "This on the other hand..."

Sarah laughed. "They tried and its not horrible for goblins."

"True, but I think I'll give them a little help." Jareth said as he summoned a crystal. He placed it on the crown and suddenly it transformed into a golden crown lined with gems the same colors as the stones the goblins had placed on the original. "That's better." He grinned.

Looking in the mirror again she saw the new crown. "Jareth..." She looked at him and started to speak but hesitated again.

"Sarah." He took the mirror and placed it on the chair behind him. Taking her hands in his, he took a deep breath. "I know what you're probably thinking, but I'm not suggesting anything by changing the crown. As I said the goblins did it all on their own. Take it for what it is, a token of their love for you. I just helped them by making it into what I'm certain they wanted to give you."

"Alright, but it stays at the castle. I'll never have a reason or an explanation for wearing a crown. Explaining the necklace and earrings to Irene will be hard enough." She stated.

"Which brings me to the other thing I wanted to do tonight." Jareth gave her a gentle smile and caressed her cheek. "I know you want to take things slow, and I'm all for it, but well... Sarah in the last few weeks things have changed."

"Changed how?" Her voice was barely above a whisper.

"Oh Precious," he grinned, "I may be new to this friendship thing, but I don't think you kiss your best friend to way you were kissing me earlier, or as often as we've kissed lately." He expected her to blush and turn her head, but she didn't. "I know, and I've told you as much, that I want to kiss you all the time. What I need to know is do you feel the same?"

"Jareth." She touched his cheek and then her fingers slowly traced his lips. "I'd be lying if I said I don't want you to hold me, to touch me, and kiss me. I enjoy being with you and the things you do to me are indescribable, but I'm not ready to be your Queen."

"And I'm not asking you to be. At least not yet."

"Then what are you asking?" Sarah studied his face carefully, trying to figure out what he was thinking.

"Well normally I would ask the parents of the girl I'm interested in for permission to court her, but since I've yet to meet your parents..." Jareth trailed off, hoping she would understand.

"You want to meet my parents?"

"Only if you want me to. If not then I guess I need your permission." He pulled her into his arms. "Sarah I'd like to take our relationship further. May I please have your permission to court you?"

"What exactly happens if I say yes?"

"Well I'll feel a bit better about kissing you all the time, but we'll still go at your pace. In your world I suppose you would say we're dating." Jareth explained. "If you're not ready for that I understand. I just need to know where we stand."

Sarah placed her hand over his and gave it a gentle squeeze. "I have one condition."

"Name it."

"Tell me why you wear the gloves."

He started laughing. "You are persistent." He nodded. "Alright. You'll need to know eventually and you did get me a marvelous new pair to wear." He pulled his hand away and slowly pulled off his gloves. He held his hands out to her and waited.

"I don't see anything wrong with your hands." She reached out and touched his bare hands.

"Careful Precious. My hands are very sensitive." He closed his eyes.

"I didn't hurt you did I?" Sarah said as she pulled her hands away.

"No, no. It was just the opposite." He opened his eyes. "Remember my warning about my ears?" Sarah nodded. "There are a few areas that are extremely sensitive. My hands are the most sensitive. Possibly because I use them to focus my magic."

Sarah slowly took his hand in hers and interlaced their fingers. "They feel warm and soothing, like your magic."

He smiled and leaned his forehead against hers. "I'd forgotten what it felt like to touch someone with bare hands." He sighed. "I can feel your energy, your heartbeat, and your emotions."

"Jareth." She gazed into his eyes as he touched her cheek and ran his thumb across her lips. She gently kissed his fingertips and then his palm. "Yes."

"Yes what Precious?" He closed his eyes and savored her touch.

"Yes you can court me." She knew he wanted her to say it, so she didn't even resist.

"Oh Sarah." He smiled and captured her lips in a passionate kiss. He ran his fingers through her hair as he moved his lips over hers. He gently nibbled on her bottom lip and licked her lips, seeking entrance. As she wrapped her arms around his neck, Sarah opened her mouth to him and she was practically putty in his hands.

Jareth's tongue slowly explored and tasted all of her it could. His hands slowly ran down her back and slowly inched under her shirt. As she felt his bare hand run up her back, she pulled away. "Jareth."

"Yes dearest?" He peppered her face with kisses.

"We should stop." She put her hands on his shoulders and gently pushed him away.

Jareth took a deep breath. "You're right. I'm sorry." He sat back and put on his new gloves.

Sarah smiled seeing him wearing her gift. "Its alright. I was bad too. You told me how sensitive your hands are and I tempted you." She reached out and took his now gloved hand in hers. "Thank you. For being so patient and caring."

He pulled her hand to his lips and kissed it. "And thank you for putting up with me." He stood and held his hand out to her. "Come, its getting late. I'll show you to your room." Sarah took his hand and let him help her to her feet. She followed him down the hall to her room and chuckled when she noticed something above her door. Jareth groaned. "I'm going to bog that idiot."

"Don't." Sarah argued. "Besides I may need to thank him later." She added as she leaned against her door.

Jareth leaned closer, one hand on the door behind her head. "If you're thinking you need to thank my cousin for giving me a reason to kiss you, then think again. Anytime and anywhere is good for kissing you."

Sarah smiled seductively at him. "Well maybe I need the encouragement." She grabbed him by the shirt and pulled him to her and kissed him. A moment later she pulled away, still smiling. "Merry Christmas and goodnight Jareth." She opened the door and slipped inside, leaving a very shocked and very happy Goblin King in the hall.

Jareth shook his head smirking. "Merry Christmas Precious." He walked across the hall and went in his own room to head to bed. Before he closed the door, he glanced at Sarah's door once more. "Goodnight Sarah."

Chapter Text

Sarah leaned against her door for a moment, her heart beating rapidly. She was grinning and trying to keep from giggling. She couldn't believe she had actually had the guts to grab him like that. Although she had to admit the look on his face made it worth it. Once she calmed down she looked around the room. She had expected a large bed and fancy sheets. She didn't expect it to be three times larger than her bedroom with a private bath. The decor was all a sky blue with silver accents. She walked around and admired the room. Glancing in the bathroom she shook her head. There was a huge bath tub and even larger selection of bath oils and lotions.

She took off the jewelry and placed it on the table by the bed. Pulling the light blue curtains to the side she looked out the window. Snow was falling and the moonlight made the snow covered trees and ground glow. With a smile, Sarah climbed into bed and turned off the light.

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

Across the hall Jareth was lying in bed with a grin on his face. Things had gone better than he had hoped for. Holding his hand out in front of him, he examined he satin glove on his hand. He normally preferred leather for his gloves, but there was something about these gloves. Maybe it was the fact that they were different than his usual ones, or maybe it was just that they were from his Sarah. Either way he didn't plan on taking them off for a while. Closing his eyes, the Goblin King drifted off to sleep with a smile on his face.

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

Hours later Jareth sat up when he heard his door open. He quickly summoned a crystal to his hand and looked around. He raised the crystal and prepared to throw it at the figure walking towards his bed. He stopped and tilted his head when he recognized the figure. "Precious?" The crystal vanished and he pulled the covers aside and sat on the edge of the bed, still watching the figure. "Is that you?"

"Yes my King." She replied as she stepped in front of the window, her body becoming bathed in the moonlight.

"What are you doing here?"

She smirked. "You brought me here. Remember? You carried me off to your winter home so we could be alone."

"I know that, but why are you in my room? Is everything alright?" Jareth asked as his eyes wandered over her body. She was no longer wearing the long sleeve pjs he had placed her in when opening gifts, instead she was in a blue night gown with spaghetti straps. He admired the way it hugged her curves and the revealing low cut that exposed the top of her breasts.

"I couldn't sleep." She whispered as she continued walking slowly towards him.

"Was your bed not to your liking?"

"No it wasn't." She replied as she stood in front of him.

"What's wrong with it? I'll correct it immediately." He assured her.

Sarah ran her hands up his bare chest to his shoulders as she stepped closer so she was standing between his legs. "You weren't there." She whispered before leaning forward and kissing him.

Jareth wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her closer as he deepened the kiss. Pulling back slightly, he looked up at her. "Are you sure about this Sarah? If not you need to leave before I loose all my self control."

She pulled his hands away from her waist and Jareth thought she was going to leave, but instead she lifted his hands to her mouth and kissed them. "And what if I don't want to go?" She asked as she started taking off his left glove. Jareth watched her drop it on the floor before removing the other one and discarding it like the first. "Are you going to send me away?" She asked as she looked into his eyes.

"I could never refuse you anything Precious." He whispered.

She smiled and took his hand in hers gently and lifted it to her mouth. Softly she kissed his wrist and up to his palm. She took her time and kissed along each finger, giving each equal care. When Jareth closed his eyes and let out a quite moan, she smirked. "Does that feel good?"

"Yes" He breathed out the word as he let out the breath he had been holding.

"Good." She took his other hand and repeated the process, going slowly and watching his face for reactions.

"Oh Sarah..." He purred as he opened his eyes to look at her.

"Yes Jareth?" She ran her hands down his arms, to his shoulders, where they started to massage gently.

"Dear, sweet, beautiful Sarah." He kissed her arms as she continued to massage him, his hands rubbing slowly up and down her back as if they were trying to memorize every inch of her as they went. He stopped kissing her arms and looked into her eyes. "Sarah, I... I love you. I have all along. Please, let me make love to you and show you how much."

With tears in her eyes, she nodded. "I love you too. Please make me yours Jareth."

Jareth stood and pulled her into his arms and kissed her like he'd never kissed her before. His hands traveled lower and lower as he worked his mouth over hers. She moaned into his mouth as he gently kneaded the muscles of her lower back and then firmly squeezed her butt. Pulling her body completely against his, she could feel exactly how badly he wanted her. When he broke their kiss, Jareth immediately started kissing and nibbling along her jaw and down her neck. "I love you." he whispered between every kiss. It was as if he couldn't tell her enough.

Sarah leaned her head to the side, giving him better access as her hands ran through his hair. "Jareth..." She closed her eyes and savored every touch, every kiss, and every inch of him that she could feel.

She gasped in surprised pleasure when one hand started to massage her breast. "You're so beautiful Sarah." He whispered as he kissed and licked along her ear. "You're the most beautiful woman I've ever met."

Suddenly she pulled his hands away and pushed him back, hard enough that he fell back on the bed. Looking up at her with panicked expression he feared he had done something wrong. Before he could ask, she reached down and grabbed the bottom of her night gown and slowly pulled it over her head. He watched as she pulled the garment off and tossed it behind her. Smiling at him, she slowly climbed on the bed beside him. "I need you." She whispered as she reached for him.

Jareth pulled her to him and kissed her again and again as his hands slowly explored her naked body. "Sarah..." he softly repeated her name over and over like a prayer.

"Sarah! Sarah!" She was sweating and breathing hard as she quickly sat up from her dream. "Noooo!" She jumped up hearing the scream.

"Jareth?" She rushed to her door and wasted no time getting to his room. She found him tossing and turning, still crying out.

"No! Sarah, please don't!"

"Jareth." She called to him as she ran to his side. "Jareth please wake up." She reached out and touched his arm.

Her touch jolted him from the dream and he sat up quickly. "Sarah."

"I'm here." She assured him. "You were dreaming."

He looked at her and without a word or warning he pulled her on the bed with him and hugged her tight. She would have protested and pulled away if it weren't for his whispers. "Thank the Gods you're alright. I was so worried." He kissed her forehead and rocked her gently in her arms. "You're safe. My precious Sarah is safe."

Whatever he had been dreaming had obviously rattled the Goblin King, so Sarah just hugged him back and tried to calm him. "Its alright Jareth. It was a dream, nothing more. I'm here. I'm safe and I'm not leaving."

They held one another, rocking gently, until the both fell fast asleep.

~*~*~*~///..///~*~*~*~

Hours later, as sunlight poured in through the window, Jareth slowly woke from his slumber. He rubbed his head as he recalled the nightmare from before. He started to sit up only to find he couldn't move due to a weight on his chest. Looking down he smiled as he saw the greatest thing he had ever woken to. There was his Sarah, snuggled against him, her arm draped over his chest. "Precious." He called to her softly.

"Hmmm?" She gave a nonverbal response and snuggled closer, her head coming to rest under his chin.
He laughed lightly and kissed the top of her head. "Dearest, I believe you did a bit of traveling in your sleep, not that I'm complaining."

She sat up slowly and rubbed her eyes. "You were having a bad dream and you were screaming." Opening tired eyes, she looked at him and covered her mouth as she yawned. "I came to check on you."

"I woke you?" Jareth thought back and vaguely remembered the nightmare ending with Sarah being beside him, safe and in his arms. He hadn't realized at the time that it wasn't a dream. "My apologies Sarah. I never meant to wake you and I certainly didn't intend to keep you here the remainder of the night."

She gave him a gentle smile. "Its fine. We're even now. Last time I woke you from a dream."
"Yes but you were having a rather delightful dream if I remember correctly." Jareth smirked. "I do believe I found you in a much better condition than you found me in."

Shrugging, Sarah stretched her arms above her head. "So what were you dreaming about?"

"Nothing of concern." He said as he sat up and turned his back to her.

"Jareth whatever it was had you pretty upset last night." She argued. "Its alright you can tell me."

Standing, he sighed. He ran his hand through his hair and turned to the window. "It snowed overnight." He said. changing the subject. "Should make for a lovely walk in the woods today."

Shaking her head, Sarah let it go for the moment. It was clear that he didn't want to talk about it. "Well since you're alright now, I guess I'll go back to my room and get dressed. Think I'll soak in the tub first though." She stated as she stood and headed for the door.

"Care for some company? Need someone to wash your back perhaps?" He called teasingly after her.

"I think I can managed just fine on my own." She replied. "Pervert King." She mumbled as she walked into the hallway.

He smirked and shook his head at her comment. Sighing he decided that perhaps a bath was a good idea. He went to his own private bathroom and filled the tub.

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

After they both had long relaxing baths, they enjoyed a quiet breakfast together, followed by a stroll through the woods. Jareth was extremely quiet all morning and Sarah began to worry. She didn't want to press him more about the dream, but whatever it had been obviously bothered him more than he would admit. Getting an idea she pulled away from him and went to an open area where the snow was undisturbed.

"Sarah?" Jareth called after her. Bending down, she grabbed some snow and packed it into a ball. She then rolled it along the ground making it bigger and bigger as she went. Walking over, he watched her with interest. "What are you doing?"

"Making a snowman." She grinned. "Come give me a hand."

Jareth walked over, crystal in hand. "If you want snowmen I can..."

"No magic." She scolded. "Building it is the fun part."

Shaking his head, he made the crystal vanish. "What do you need me to do?"

Stopping what she was doing, she looked at the King. "You've never made a snowman?"

"Not by hand." He admitted.

"Well we're going to fix that." She took his hand and pulled him over. "First make a snowball." She gathered snow and made a ball. She watched as Jareth mimicked her actions. "Now roll it on the ground until it becomes the size you want." Sarah and Jareth rolled the snowballs around until they were proper size. Jareth helped her lift the medium sized one onto the largest one and then the small one on the top. "Now we need some stones to make the face and sticks for the arms." She was grinning as she looked around.

Jareth helped searched and found a few rocks and sticks. "How about these Sarah?"

She rushed over and looked the items over. "Perfect." She took them from him and added them to the snowman. "Too bad we don't have..."

"A hat and a scarf?" Jareth asked as he held the items out to her. She looked at him with a confused look. "I know you said no magic, but I didn't think getting a few decorations would be a bad thing."

She took them and placed them on the snowman. "Now its perfect."

He stepped up behind her and wrapped his arms around her. "The snowman is terrific. You're perfect Precious." He kissed her cheek.

Sarah turned in his arms so she was facing him. Wrapping her arms around his neck she leaned her head against his. "Not so bad yourself Goblin King." She kissed him softly then pulled away. He watched her with a curious expression and she bent down and gathered more snow.

"Building another...." His sentence was interrupted by a ball of cold, wet, snow hitting him. He looked down at the snow still stuck to his chest and then at her with an unamused expression. "Sarah if you..." Another snowball hit him.

"What's wrong Jareth?" She smirked. "Afraid to get a little wet?"

Soon he was smiling as he gathered snow and threw it at her. For the next hour they ducked behind trees, dodged snowballs and had a wonderfully fun snowball fight, which if anyone was keeping score of how many successful hits they got, Sarah would have won.

Growing tired of the game, Jareth decided on a full assault. Even though he took a snowball to the face, he charged straight at her and tackled her to the ground. They rolled in the snow for a bit until Jareth finally pinned her under him. "Do you yield?" He asked with a smirk.

"Never." She tried to pull free, but he held on tight.

As she struggled her arms flailed above her head, Jareth smiled. "Trying for a snow angel now dearest?"

"If you want to to make snow angels you'll have to let go and lay on your back." Sarah replied with a grin.

"Nice try dear, but I'm not letting go, until you admit defeat."

"And give you power over me?" She shook her head. "Not a chance Goblin King."

He leaned down and rubbed his nose against hers. "Are you telling me your back side isn't getting a little cold?"

Deciding to play dirty, Sarah slowly lifted her knee until it touched him. "Maybe I'm feeling a little warm." She whispered.

"You're playing with fire Sarah." He groaned as she shifted her knee slightly.

"Do you admit defeat?" She gave him a sly grin.

"Are you wanting me to ravish you here in the snow?" She shook her head. Sighing Jareth let her go. "Then I suppose I have no choice but to concede my little vixen. I never took you for one to fight dirty."

Sarah sat up and smiled. "With you I have to sometimes, especially since you don't play fair."

"Me? Not play fair? I'm hurt Precious." He reached over and gently brushed the snow from her hair. "Exactly what did I do to cheat?"

"Just being you."

"Well that hardly seems like a cheat darling." Jareth chuckled. "I can't help being me."

"Its cheating because you use it to your advantage." She leaned over and kissed him. "Its getting harder and harder to refuse you." She kissed him again wrapping her arms around him. "I want to just give into you, but it still scares the hell out of me." She kissed him again and they fell back in the snow, this time she was on top.

"Sarah." He said between her kisses. "Sarah stop."

She stopped and quickly sat up and turned from him. "I'm sorry I..."

"Sarah." He sat up and wrapped her arms around her. "Dearest I'm not refusing you."

"Then..." She looked over her shoulder at him.

"I was simply going to suggest we go somewhere warmer and dryer." He stated before kissing her cheek. "While the idea of doing all kinds of things to you right here is tempting, I would never forgive myself if you caught a cold."

She chuckled and nodded. "I suppose we should head back and get some dry clothes." She stood and brushed the snow from her clothes.

Standing up beside her, Jareth smirked. "Though the clothes are optional."

She shook her head. "Pervert King."

He wrapped her arms around her with a seductive grin on his face. "Just the way you like me dearest." He kissed her softy and scooped her into his arms.

"What are you doing?" She asked as she giggled.

"Carrying you to a warm, dry place." He answered.

"I can walk." She told him as she wrapped her arms around his neck.

"Yes you can, but what kind of a boyfriend would I be if I let you walk all that way in cold, wet, clothes?" He asked before kissing her again.

She grinned. "Say it again?"

"What?" He asked as he tilted his head.

"Say you're my boyfriend again." Sarah requested.

"Enjoy hearing that Jareth the incredibly sexy and all powerful King of the Goblins is your boyfriend?" He teased as he stopped walking.

"Yes I like hearing the gorgeous and extremely vain Goblin King is mine." Sarah replied as she stared into his eyes.

"Close your eyes." He instructed. She did as he asked and soon felt the air around her change and knew he was transporting them back to the house. "You can open them now." He whispered. When she did she saw they were in the sitting area and he was placing her on the couch. Jareth then turned and threw a crystal at the fireplace, creating a roaring fire in it. When he turned back to her, his eyes wandered over her body. "Now shall I put you in some warm clothes? Or should I simply remove the wet ones and warm you up myself."

"Jareth..."

He sat on the couch beside her. "While the second option sounds like a lot of fun, I don't think you're ready for that." He tossed a crystal up and soon they were both in dry clothes.

"Jareth I..."

"Its alright Precious. No pressure. Having you with me is enough." He kissed forehead and started to stand.

She grabbed his hand and stopped him. "Jareth will you at least sit with me?"

"I'm not sure I can just sit at the moment."

"I trust you." She assured him. "Please just sit with me."

Nodding Jareth sat beside her and pulled her into his arms and leaned back. "Is everything alright?" He asked as he kissed her temple.

"You're not going to tell me your dream are you?" She asked as she took his hand in hers.

"Sarah its nothing..."

"Jareth if you truly are my boyfriend, you need to tell me things. I can't be here for you if you don't let me. It was a dream. Nothing more, but if its bad enough to make you scream like you did then I think I need to know." Sarah explained.

Sighing he tightened his grip on her. "I saw Ta'leena."

"The High Queen?"

"Yes. I saw her torturing and killing the most important person in my life." He closed his eyes and leaned his head against her. "She was killing you and I was powerless to stop her."

Chapter Text

"The High Queen was killing me?" Sarah questioned as she looked over her shoulder at Jareth. With a sigh, he nodded. "Jareth it was a dream. I'm safe. Vol'sun assured me that no one's magic, besides yours, can get in my home. If the whole arranged marriage thing is taken care of there should be no reason for her to still come after me. Right?"

"You're human."

"So..."

"Ta'leena has a deep hatred for humans. She has for centuries. She won't be happy with me even considering marring one. She knows you're the one I want and I don't think she'll stop until she prevents it." Sarah leaned further back against Jareth and slowly removed his right glove. "Precious?"

"I'll behave." She stated as she interlaced their fingers and held his hand to her chest. "What do you feel?"

With a smile he closed his eyes and took a deep breath. "I can feel your warmth, your energy, your heart beat."

"Did I give up even with all the dangers I faced in the Labyrinth?"

"You were never truly in danger Sarah."

"I didn't know that though. Somebody," she gave him a gentle jab in the ribs, "never bothered to tell me all the rules or what he really wanted."

He grabbed her other hand to prevent further jabs. "Yes, well you know very well what I want now."

Chuckling she lifted his hand to her lips and kissed his knuckles. "Yes I know exactly what you want."

"Vixen." He groaned into her hair.

"But seriously Jareth, why did this dream bother you so much? You've done all you can to keep me not only safe, but hidden from the court. They can't hurt me if they can't find me right?"

With a heavy sigh, Jareth pulled her closer and held her tight. He kissed her temple and hesitated a moment. "Precious how much exactly do you remember about your dream while in the Labyrinth?"

"The ballroom?"

"Yes."

"Well I remember your song and dancing with you of course." She smiled remembering it. "The dress I was wearing and the fancy suit you had on." She turned to face him. "What about it?"

"I wasn't the only one to sneak into your dream at the time." He brushed her hair back and gazed into her eyes. "I was distracted with your run and Jaxel found a way in during the chaos. I warned him not to interfere, but I forgot until I had that dream that he saw you. Jaxel saw you and knows what you look like."

"You think he would find me for the High Queen?" Sarah asked.

"I honestly don't know. He did in the dream. The other reason it bothered me so, is I had absolutely no control over the dream, which is unheard of for me. Vol'sun taught me to control dream magic, its why I can manipulate and offer dreams to wishers the way I do. If I couldn't do a thing in my dream it means one of three things. I was reliving a memory, which this wasn't. So it had to either be someone messing with my dreams, or a premonition of things to come."

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

Heidi approached the gate to the Labyrinth around midday. She had a look of pure determination on her face. She had packed all the supplies she could possibly think of ever needing, not that she actually believed she would need them. She was going to beat this dumb maze and she was going to do it in record time, she told herself. Banging on the door, she stepped back and waited for either Jareth or that annoying dwarf to show up.

When no one showed up, she banged again and shouted until Hoggle finally appeared. "What do ya wants now?"

"I want to challenge the Labyrinth."

"You what?" Hoggle couldn't believe what he was hearing.

"You heard me. I want to defend the Labyrinth and earn my title as Queen. Then Jareth will have to accept me." She smirked. "Now let me in."

"The King ain't here. He's off on his holiday retreat." Hoggle told her.

"Does he need to be here for me to challenge the Labyrinth?"

"Well not really but its his right to oversee challengers and the final part of the challenge is facing the King."

"But that's when trying to win back a child. Does the same apply when I'm not trying to win back a child or take his thrown? I simply want to earn my right to be Queen. Jareth isn't needed for that is he?"

Hoggle thought a moment. "I guess its up to the Labyrinth. If it lets ya in then it accepts your challenge." He led her to the gate. "Make your challenge to the Labyrinth. If it lets ya in, you'll have 13 hours to get to the center."

Heidi stepped forward and looked at the wall. "You really want me to talk to the wall?"

Hoggle shrugged. "If ya wants to be Queen ya will have to obey the Labyrinth. The King and Queen gets their power from the Labyrinth. If you don't respect the Labyrinth ya will never be Queen."

Heidi sighed and shook her head. "I am here to challenge the Labyrinth to earn my right to be the Goblin Queen."

They stood there in silence for a few minutes and then suddenly the gate opened. Hoggle followed Heidi in and looked around. The walls were black and the usual glitter was gone. Hoggle got a bad feeling just being in it. "This ain't good." He mumbled as he backed out.

"See you at the Castle Hoghead." Heidi said with a grin as she headed to the left.

"I better tell the King." Hoggle whispered as he ran out of the Labyrinth, the gate slamming shut behind him.

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

Jareth and Sarah had moved from the couch and were laying on a blanket in front of the fireplace. Sarah was laying on her side, facing the fire with part of the blanket covering her legs. Jareth was laying behind her, propped up on his elbow. His hands were bare and one was playing with Sarah's hair. "Still awake Precious?"

"Yea, I'm awake." She rolled on to her back and looked up at him. "I was just thinking."

"About what?"

"What I'm going to tell Nanny and my friends when I go back." Sarah answered as she took his hand in hers.

"And just what are you telling them?" He smirked.

"Well Nanny already believes we're more than friends."

"And she would be correct." He lifted her hand to his lips and kissed it.

Sarah chuckled. "Yes and I plan to tell her that we're dating now. Just not sure if I want to tell anyone else."

"I'm not sure I understand Sarah. Why would you keep that from your friends?" Jareth had a very confused look on his face.

"Well other than Beckie and Whit no one knows about you. I'm not sure how to explain suddenly dating a guy that no one has ever heard of or met." She explained. Jareth nodded and Sarah sighed. "Jareth its not that I want to keep our relationship a secret, but I don't want to make up stories or lie to my friends and family either." She reached up with the hand that wasn't holding Jareth's hand and touched his face. "I know it won't be normal, with you being who and what you are, but I'd like to have a normal relationship with you. Go on dates, occasionally spend time together with my friends, and not that it would change my opinion of you, but I'd like to have my friends approve of you."

"So you want me to be a normal guy." Jareth asked.

"When we're aboveground, yes. You did a marvelous job when you met Nanny. She seemed to like you. I know you can handle my friends and eventually Daddy and Irene." She sat up and turned to face him. "I was thinking of keeping the fact that we're dating secret for a little while. Slowly mention you to my friends and talk to Daddy more about you."

"So if I see any of these friends or your family I am to continue pretending we're just friends?" He inquired.

Nodding, Sarah caressed his cheek. "Just for a little while, and we'll have to come up with details of where you live, what you do for work, how old you are, and answers to anything else they may ask us."

"Sounds like an awful lot of work just to be able to date you." Jareth said teasingly.

Sarah missed the fact he was teasing and started apologizing. "I'm sorry. I know I'm asking a lot of you..."

The rest of her sentence was forgotten when Jareth captured her lips with his. He ran his fingers through her hair and deepened the kiss. Sarah wrapped her arm around his neck. When he broke the kiss, he pulled back smiling. "Precious, haven't you figured out yet that I would do anything for you? If I have to pretend to just be your friend when around others then I will do so. It won't be easy to keep my distance from you, but I shall do my best."

She smiled at him. "Thank you Jareth." She kissed him and then leaned her head against his.

"Just don't make me do it for too long." Jareth said as he ran his hand from her shoulder down her arm slowly. "I have enough trouble keeping my hands off you." He kissed her softly and smiled. "Speaking of that we should probably talk about boundaries."

"Boundaries?"

"I know you're not ready for the things I want to do with you, but if we don't set boundaries I may go further than you want." Sarah started to argue, but he put a finger to her lips. "Don't even tell me that you will tell me if I go too far. Precious you've already told me that you are finding it harder to resist me. In the heat of the moment I don't think either of us will be able to stop if there aren't boundaries in place."

"So you're saying that, in the heat of the moment, you'll be able to stop yourself?" She was smiling and her hand was playing with a strand of his blonde hair.

"Well I believe that if we say, for example, that clothes have to stay on, then I'll be a little more likely to stop myself before I start undressing you." His hand played with the zipper of her jacket.

"What if I start undressing you?" Sarah was gazing into his eyes as her hand inched its way down his neck to his chest.

"Then I will follow your lead. I'll do what you do. You will be the one in control unless you tell me otherwise." He grabbed her hand to stop her from continuing her teasing. "You are a very cruel temptress when you wish to be my dear." He kissed her nose and sat up. He pulled her onto his lap and wrapped his arms around her waist. "So what are our boundaries?"

"Well the clothes staying on sounds like a good place to start." Sarah wrapped her arms around his neck. "I'm not really sure what other boundaries to set."

"Well is there any area that I'm not allowed to touch? I'm sure you'd prefer I not leave a mark on you seeing that we're keeping our relationship hidden for a bit. And when we're alone and being...." He hesitated and ran a finger across her cheek and along her chin, "intimate, what are you alright with me doing?"

Sarah thought for a moment. "Well you're correct about the no leaving marks. I think as long as we're both fully clothed then touching is completely fine. If you touch an area I feel uncomfortable with I'll tell you. As for you're last question, I'm not sure I understand. What would you be doing other than touching or kissing me?"

He smirked. "Oh there are a few other things I can do that you may find enjoyable." He pulled her closer and kissed her cheek. "Shall I give you examples?" He kissed to her ear.

Sarah leaned her head to the side. "Jareth..."

He kissed her ear. "I can lick." He slowly licked her neck. "I can nibble." He whispered before he gently nibbled on her ear. Sarah gave a quiet moan in response. He smiled at her reaction. Slowly he pulled her shirt to the side, revealing her shoulder.

"Jareth what are you doing?"

"Giving you my final example." He kissed her neck. "I also could simply bite you." He quickly bit her shoulder, being sure to do it light enough to not break skin. He pulled her shirt back over her shoulder and went back to kissing her neck.

"Jareth."

"Yes Precious?" He kissed along her jaw.

"While I kind of enjoyed it, biting is going to need to be off limits for now."

"No marks." He stated as he rubbed his nose against hers.

"Yea, no marks." She smiled and her hands played with his hair. "I'm ok with the licking and nibbling, as long as there are no marks."

"I can do that." Jareth said before he kissed her again. The kiss started soft and gentle but soon it was a deep and passionate kiss. When he ran his tongue along her lips, Sarah opened her mouth to him. His tongue explored her mouth and danced with hers. His hands ran up and down her back.

Sarah ran her fingers through his hair, her nails lightly scrapping across his scalp. When he pulled back they were both out of breath. Sarah moved so that she was straddling Jareth. She ran her hands along his shoulders and down his back. "Jareth." She almost purred his name before she kissed him.

Jareth groaned as she felt her softly grind her hips against him. His hands gripped her shoulders and began massaging her back as they worked their way down slowly. "Oh Sarah." He kissed her again and his hands continued working their way lower down her back.

Sarah moaned softly as she kissed him back and she rubbed her hands down his chest. She rotated her hips against him, causing a low growl to escape his throat. Hearing it sent a shiver down her spine. She enjoyed knowing how she was affecting Jareth. Wanting to hear him growl again, she ground her hips against him again.

He growled again, but this time it was as he lifted her from his lap and laid her back on the blanket. "None of that my cruel temptress." He said as he leaned over her and started kissing her neck. "Apparently I need to set a boundary or two for you." He licked her ear and ran his hands along her sides. "You have to behave if you want me to respect your boundaries."

"I'll try to behave." She grinned. Sarah wrapped her arms around him and pulled him down to her. "Though it is hard when my boyfriend is so sexy." She kissed him and let herself get lost in the kiss.

Jareth and Sarah were so engrossed with each other they didn't hear the first knock at the door. They ignored the second and third knocks. The fourth knock got a growl from the Goblin King as he tried to ignore it and continue showering Sarah with affection. When there was a fifth knock, Jareth left Sarah on the blanket by the fireplace and stormed to the door. "You better have a damned good reason for being here or your pathetic life will be ending shortly!" He shouted as he approached the door.

Sarah scrambled to her feet and hurried after Jareth. "Don't kill anyone!"

Jareth opened the door to see an extremely nervous and scared Hoggle. "This had better be important Hogbrain!"

"Sor...sorry to bother you Highness..." Hoggle studdered as he tried not turn and run.

"Get on with it." Jareth said through gritted teeth.

Sarah stepped out the door and got between Jareth and Hoggle. "Relax Jareth." She knelt by Hoggle and smiled at him. "What brings you here Hoggle?"

"I just wanted to let the King know that there's a challenger in the Labyrinth." Hoggle told Sarah.

"You let someone in the Labyrinth while I'm away?" Jareth demanded.

"No, no. I told her that you weren't there and she demanded to still be allowed to run the Labyrinth. She issued a challenge to the Labyrinth itself and the gate opened for her." Hoggle said quickly.

"Who Hoggle? Who issued the challenge?" Sarah asked.

"Heidi." Hoggle said softly.

"Heidi?!" Jareth was furious.

"Why would she challenge the Labyrinth?" Sarah inquired.

"She said if she beat it she would be able to take her place as Queen." Hoggle responded.

Jareth laughed. "Even if she managed to beat the Labyrinth in the 13 hour time limit, she would have to do so in a faster time than you did."

"It took me the full 13 hours." Sarah looked up at Jareth.

"No Precious. It took you 10 hours. Remember I took 3 hours from you after you called my Labyrinth a piece of cake." Jareth smirked.

"There's something else your majesty." Hoggle spoke up.

"What is it?"

"The Labyrinth...when she went in it was dark and there was no sparkle." Hoggle stated.

"What does that mean?" Sarah asked.

"The Labyrinth changes for each challenger. If the usual sparkle of the Labyrinth's magic wasn't visible then Heidi is facing the Labyrinth at its hardest." Jareth rubbed his chin.

"If she's not trying to get back a baby why would it be so hard?" Sarah inquired trying to understand.

"Heidi challenged the Labyrinth with the intent of claiming the throne. The Labyrinth already has its rulers." Jareth explained.

"I haven't agreed to that." Sarah protested.

"True, but as far as it and the citizens of my Kingdom are concerned you are the rightful Queen. Heidi is hoping that if she defeats the Labyrinth then she has a claim to the throne, which of course she doesn't. It doesn't work that way unless she intends to challenge me and attempt to take the throne from me." Jareth summoned a crystal and grinned at what he saw. "She's still in the outer ring of the Labyrinth."

Hoggle started backing away. "Shall I go lead her to the exit?"

"No need Higgle. If she needs a distraction I shall provide it." Jareth stated. "You may return to the castle. I shall keep an eye on her progress from here."

Hoggle nodded and bowed to the King before hurrying back to the castle. Sarah stood and turned to look at Jareth. "So what are we going to do?"

Jareth held his hand out to her. "For now we will simply watch her."

Chapter Text

Heidi made her way down the long dark corridors of the Labyrinth. There was nothing to be seen but the taller than usual black walls of the living maze. "Well I already know Jareth's blasted barrier won't let me use magic to just appear at the castle and I'm sure that would be considered cheating anyway." Heidi said out loud to herself. "I just hope this place hasn't weakened the rest of my magic." She quickly summoned a crystal to check. "Looks like I have my magic, hope I don't need it though." Heidi looked for openings as she continued down the straight path, but saw none. She walked and walked, with no end in site. "I don't remember having to walk this far before we turned, but I don't see an opening anywhere." Heidi said to herself as she picked up the pace.

After passing a branch that looked familiar for the third time, Heidi summoned an orb to her hand and threw it at the branch. The branch was showered in a thin red mist and then a very intricate designed was carved into the wood. "Now to test my theory." Heidi took off running and several minutes later she came upon the branch once again.

"I've been going in circles!" She screamed. "This place is horrible, but I will beat it!" Reaching into her bag, Heidi pulled out a rope and her bow. She tied the rope to the arrow and fired it over the Labyrinth wall. Pulling the rope, the arrow came back over the wall and fell at her feet. After several tries, she finally got it to catch on something. Giving it a hard tug the rope didn't move.
Grinning, Heidi began to climb the wall. "If I can't go straight, I'll just go over." As she climbed the wall, she was completely unaware of the fact that the walls were slowly moving around her. When she reached the top, she was surprised to see the part of the wall she was now standing on was a solo portion about 10 feet long with the rest of the walls separated from it. "You think you're clever, but it won't stop me."

She grabbed her arrow, which was wedged in between the bricks, and fired it at the walls in the direction of the castle. Again it took a few tries to get the arrow to catch on something, but when it did, Heidi pulled it tight and secured the other end of the rope to the wall she was standing on. With a determined look on her face, she slowly started walking across the rope. "I'll be at the castle in time for lunch."

When she was halfway across, the walls once again began to move. The rope that was pulled tight, slowly started to sag and fall as the walls moved closer together. Heidi lost her balance and fell, but managed to grab the rope before she fell to the ground. She hung on tight as the rope drooped lower and lower. When the walls stopped moving, Heidi was hanging a couple of feet from the ground. Letting go of the rope, she dropped to the ground with a frustrated groan. "Damn it!"

Taking a deep breath, Heidi looked around. Once again she appeared to be in the middle of a never ending corridor. "Alright, there has to be a way to get through. Its not a challenge if it cheats and makes it so I can't find a way through." She started walking slowly down the corridor. "If a pathetic human figured it out, then so can I."

Heidi slowly ran her hand along the wall to try and feel an opening that her eyes might have missed. At first the stone was cold and unfeeling to her touch, but as she started moving faster and faster down the path, she never noticed the wall starting to feel warm. She figured it was just the simple friction of her hand rubbing along the wall that was causing the warmth. Before she could fully comprehend what was going on, her hand was filled with an intense sheering pain as it was burned on the wall. "Ouch!" Heidi exclaimed as she jerked her hand away.

Cradling her burnt hand to her chest she swore and glared at the wall. "Is there no end to the tricks?" She summoned a crystal in her uninjured hand and placed it against her throbbing fingers. A moment later the red burnt skin faded to its normal color and the pain went away. She pulled her dagger from her belt and continued walking while dragging the blade across the wall. "I won't be bested."

A few moments later her arm extended as she found an opening. Smiling she walked through and looked around. "I knew there had to be an opening somewhere." She picked a direction and continued on her way, still using the dagger to search for openings. She occasionally threw a crystal at branches she passed and changed there color or placed a design on it to help ensure she wasn't going in circles again.

Heidi continued on her way, zigging and zagging through the maze. She was feeling quite confident that she was at last making progress. The walls opened up and ahead she could see a forest. "Now i just have to get past that blasted bog." She hurried through the forest, not even stopping to look around. She knew instantly when she was nearing the bog. Her sensitive Fae nose told her she was headed the correct way. Soon the bog was in view and Heidi did her best not to gag from the smell as she dashed through, not wanting to spend a moment more than she had to near the horrid smelling bog.

In no time at all she reached the forest on the other side of the bog. "I knew this would be easy. They thought I didn't pay attention when that horrible dwarf led me to the castle." Heidi smirked. "On the other side of this forest is the trash heap and then its the Goblin City." She was so focused on her goal, she never noticed she was being watched and followed by 5 creatures.
The five chuckled to themselves. "Foolish Fae." One whispered.

"She must not know the King's away." Another commented.

"Even if she doesn't know, its too late for her now." The third grinned.

"It'll be nice to taste Fae flesh again." The chubby one added.

"Let's get her." The last one said before he jumped from a tree and landed in front of her.

The other four followed and quickly had Heidi surrounded. "You look lost." One of the creatures said with a huge grin that revealed his razor sharp teeth.

"Fierys." Heidi said with word with disgust. "I never thought Jareth would be dumb enough to have vile creatures like you in his Labyrinth."

"King Jareth takes good care of all his subjects." The tallest Fiery stated.

"Yeah, he accepts all who don't belong elsewhere." The smallest added.

"Even us." The chubby one stated.

"Why would he allow you to be here? Your kind hunt and kill Fae." Heidi asked as she pulled her sword and turned in a circle, watching each one closely.

"We only kill Fae before they kill us!" The first one shouted.

"Hey lady, we just want to have fun." The second one added.

"Yea, here we can sing and dance all day and have no worry about being killed." The third one said as he tossed his head in the air.

"The Goblin King gave us the whole forest to play in, and we can play with any runners that come through." The Fourth one explained.

"That includes you." The fifth one told her.

"Alright, you've had your fun and I'll be on my way then." Heidi tried to smile, hoping they truly only meant to play.

"Afraid not little lady." The short one said. "You picked the wrong time to be here on your own."

"Yea, the King is gone and we remember how Fae like you treated us." The tall one said.

"Stay back!" Heidi shouted. "When I beat the Labyrinth I will be your Queen and you'll have to listen to me. If you let me go on my way I'll forget this happened and you can keep your forest."

"And if we don't?" They asked together as the moved closer and closer to her.

"You will be gone just like that horrible bog." Heidi spat.

"Just like a Fae, don't like something so they get rid of it." The chubby one said, his voice filled with venom.

"I think we should take off her head." One shouted.

"Yea and then her arms and her legs." The second added.

The five of them dove at her all at once. Heidi swung her sword, hitting anything she could. She knew she was in trouble. One firey was hard to fight, but five at a time may be more than she could handle. Trying to at least slow them down, she aimed for their heads and knocked them all as far from their bodies as she could, but not before one managed to bite her shoulder and two managed to dig their retractable claws into her side and legs. Swinging her sword around frantically, she managed to separate their limbs form their bodies and remove their teeth and claws from her.
Heidi ran the moment she could because she knew it would only take a minute for them to put themselves together again. Their ability to separate their limbs and regenerate is what made them the most dangerous creatures to fight in groups. Blood was running down her arm and legs as she raced through the forest, their laughter close behind her. The further she ran, the louder the voices of the fierys got. Soon she was facing the side of a cliff, with nowhere to go. "Damn it!" Heidi put her back to the wall and looked around. She knew they weren't far behind her. She held her sword in one hand and summoned a crystal in the other.

"We have you now!" One of them cried as they all leapt from the trees.

When all five were in range, Heidi threw the crystal at their feet and quickly covered her head with her hands. The crystal hit the ground and shattered, causing a large explosion that knocked all five back, disoriented them, and separated their bodies. Heidi herself wasn't completely untouched by the explosion, but the slight burns she received were nothing compared to what would happen if the fierys pulled themselves back together. Forcing herself to stand, she quickly rushed over with long metal spikes she had managed to summon. She quickly drove the spikes into the limbs of all the fierys and any heads she found were tossed as far as she could in all directions.

Once Heidi was certain that she had bought herself enough time, she pulled a rope from her bag, tied one end to an arrow and fired it at a tree at the top of the cliff. Luckily she managed to hit it first try and she prayed it would hold. Climbing as fast as she could, which wasn't easy with her injuries, Heidi made her way to the top. Below her she could hear the fierys already pulling themselves together. "Don't let her get away!"

Just as she thought she was going to make it, a sharp pain ran through her calf. She glanced down to see the head of one of the fierys was latched onto her leg, its blood covered teeth sunk in to the bone. "Get off me!" She cried as she kicked her leg. She banged it against the cliff side as hard as she could, despite the pain it was causing to herself. Finally the fiery let go and the head fell down to the where the rest of its body was waiting.

Heidi quickly pulled herself up the last of the rope and sat on the branch of the large tree. She stared down at her pursuers as she tried to catch her breath. Seeing them starting to climb the rope after her, she pulled her dagger out and cut the rope. They fell to the ground and broke into pieces again, but that wasn't going to stop them. She climbed down from the tree and hurried on her way the best she could, though she was limping badly.

After limping as far as she could, Heidi sat down at the base of a tree and started attempting to bandage her wounds. She debated simply healing them with her magic, but she had used a lot to create the explosion with the fierys. Summoning a crystal, she used her magic to heal her leg. Heidi figured it was better to be a little weak in the magic department but able to run than stronger magic and barely able to walk. Once her wounds were cleaned and bandaged, she pulled a container of water from her bag. Fae didn't get hungry or thirsty as frequently as humans, but after dealing with five fierys she needed a drink. She would have preferred a glass of a fine Elvin ale or even a strong Dwarven brew, but since water was all she had at the moment it would have to do.

Leaning her head back against the tree, she took a deep breath and closed her eyes. "I knew Jareth could be crazy, but honestly... letting fierys in here?" She sighed. "What else did he let in here I wonder?" Before she could even consider the answer to her own question, a loud roar came from up a head. "Now what?" Heidi quickly got to her feet and drew her sword. It had become obvious to her that she had to be prepared for anything in this place.

Slowly she made her way forward, her eyes searching all around for any sign of movement. When the roar of a beast filled the air again, Heidi turned in circles. She listened for any sound of what ever was roaring approaching her location. Hearing the stomping of what sounded like hooves getting closer to her location, she hid behind a tree. Slowly the stomping got closer and closer. Heidi held her sword at the ready and waited. Just before it reached her location, the stomping stopped. She could hear the heavy breathing of what ever foul creature was just on the other side of the tree. The creature sniffed the air. "Who's there?" asked a deep gravely voice.

Heidi quickly jumped around the tree and held her sword out. "I'm not afraid of you and if you try to stop me from reaching the castle I will kill you!"

"Woah, woah," The creature held its hands out. "Don't hurt me. I was just looking for some fruit."
Heidi looked the creature over. It looked to be half man, half bull. "You're...you're a Minotaur."

"That's right." The Minotaur said. "Could you put the sword away?"

"No, I don't think so." Heidi said as she circled him. "I know very well how vicious your kind are."

The Minotaur sighed. "My kind.... Look just because I'm half bull doesn't mean I go around charging at things like a wild animal and ramming my horns into anything that moves."

"So you don't plan to attack me?"

"No, I was just going to ask if you've seen any fruit around here." He replied.

Slowly, Heidi lowered her sword. "Sorry I just dealt with five fierys. This place has been one thing after another."

"You're trying to get to the castle?" Heidi nodded. "Why? King Jareth is away for his winter holiday and you're not human, so I doubt you're trying to get back a stolen child."

"I'm trying to earn my place on the throne as Queen." Heidi answered.

The Minotaur scratched his head. "I thought King Jareth had found a Queen?"

"I will not allow a human to take the throne!" Heidi shouted.

The Minotaur shrugged. "Well good luck on your quest." He waved and walked by her and continued deeper into the forest.

Heidi watched him until he was out of sight. Shaking her head she continued on her way with a smirk. "Never thought I'd see a tame Minotaur." She walked until she made it out of the forest. "Finally. I was beginning to think I'd be stuck in there forever." She walked around the stone walls. "I don't remember seeing this before."

As she walked around, the walls changed behind her and soon there was only one way she could go. She found herself standing in front of two creatures, or was it four? She couldn't tell. They appeared to either be two creatures hiding behind shields or four creatures with two behind each shield. Behind each was a door and she was certain one of those doors led to the castle. "Let me guess you have some sort of riddle I'm supposed to figure out?"

The creatures laughed. "One door leads to the castle at the center of the Labyrinth and the other leads to... ba ba ba ba bam certain death... oooooooooooo"

Sighing, Heidi studied the creatures. "So how do I know which one is which?"

The creature or creatures that peeked out from the bottom shrugged. "You have to ask them."

"But you can only ask one of us." The creature at the top of the red shield said.

"It's in the rules." The creature at the top of the blue shield added. "But I must warn you, one of us always lies and the other always tells the truth. He always lies."

"I do not, I tell the truth!"

"Oh what a lie." the creatures laughed and giggled as Heidi studied them.

Pacing back and forth in front of them, Heidi thought carefully. "So one lies and one tells the
truth..." She ran her hand through her hair. "Alright so tell me, does this door lead to the castle?" She asked the blue guard.

He ducked behind the shield and whispered with the lower half. When he poked his head back up he looked at Heidi and said, "No."

Heidi nodded and went to the red guard. "Then this is the correct door."

"How do you know?" The guard asked. "He could be lying."

"No if he was the liar he wouldn't have told me about the rules. I'm sure there's some sort of punishment for breaking the rules." Heidi replied. She pushed the guard out of the way and went through the door. After taking a few steps, a trap door opened under and she fell in a dark hole.
She fell fast towards the bottom and then was suddenly grabbed by cold hands. They grabbed her roughly and brought her to a sudden halt causing the dagger on her belt to come loose from its sheath and fall. "Let me go!"

"Are you sure that's what you want?" asked a voice.

"We're just the helping hands, trying to help." said another.

"So which way?"

"Which way?" Heidi asked as she looked around and saw faces along the walls made out of hands.

"Up or down?" One face asked.

"That's easy. I want to go up." Heidi said quickly.

"So chose up...."

"So chose up." The voices started laughing as the hands lifted her up to the top.

As Heidi went higher and higher, she never noticed her bag getting lighter and lighter. The hands were pick-pocketing her as they helped her back up to the top. When she reached the top, the hands held her as high as they could and she climbed the rest of the way out. Once she was out of the hole she stood and turned just in time to see the trap door slam shut. "Well that was almost a disaster. Good thing the helping hands were there to lift me back up to the top." She smiled and headed down the wide, dimly lit corridor.

After a few steps, Heidi realized her bag felt really light. Opening it she nearly screamed when she saw it was completely empty. Everything was gone; her water, the rope, arrows, and even her bow was missing from her back. All she had left was the empty bag and her sword. "Those rotten thieves!" She cried as she continued down the hall. "Some help they were." She grumbled. With her next step, Heidi triggered another trap and wooden spikes shot out at her from the walls. If it hadn't been for her Fae hearing that let her hear the mechanism trigger, and her quick reflexes she would have been impaled against the wall. Instead she only received a couple of scratches from the spikes as they shot past her. She knelt and examined the brick she had stepped on. It was a slightly lighter color than the others and was pressed in lower than the others, mostly due to her stepping on it and triggering the trap. She walked carefully the rest of the way, using her sword to press any stones that looked like that one. Some set off more traps, while others were just stones.

Heidi managed to avoid spikes, swinging blades, and even trap doors by triggering them with her sword. She was so intent on watching the floor for more traps, she never thought to look up as she continued down the tunnel which was getting darker and darker. She soon found herself in the tunnels under the Labyrinth. In her search for traps on the floor, she missed the trip wire that was at chest level. She walked through it and the path behind her was blocked off by a large stone that fell. "Guess I can't go back now..."

She continued on carefully looking for traps and choosing which path she thought was best to take. As she turned down one path, she heard what sounded like a machine coming closer. Deciding to investigate, she continued forward. Soon she found herself face to face with a large machine covered in blades and rotating drills. "What in the name of the gods is that thing?"

As there was obviously no way around it, she ran back the way she came and took the other path. She just kept running, not even bothering to look for traps anymore. Before long she spotted a light ahead and ran faster towards it. Soon she was out of the tunnels and in the light of day again. "Finally." She sighed with relief, but it was short lived.

There was a loud roar and what made it was close enough that she could feel the heat and smell its foul breath. Her mouth dropped opened as she looked up and found herself face to face with an adult red dragon. "Oh no..." Quickly she rolled out of the way as the dragon snapped its massive jaws at her. Looking around she quickly realized she was trapped in a small pit that appeared to be a Colosseum with the dragon; the tunnel the only means of escape.

Heidi quickly drew her sword and summoned a crystal in her other hand. This wasn't the first dragon she'd fought, but it certainly was the largest. The dragon lunged at her again and again and Heidi ducked, rolled, and ran out of its reach. Little did she know the dragon's roars had attracted near by goblin guards, but not just any guards. The goblins that were quickly gathering in the stands were Jareth's elite guards; the hobgoblins. They smiled viciously showing their pointy teeth as they watched the Fae try and avoid being eaten by the dragon.

"Foolish Fae." One of the guards said.

"Yeah, she's got nowhere to go." Stated another.

"Let's have some fun." One of the guards grinned as he knocked and arrow. He fired it and hit the unsuspecting Fae square on the left knee. As she fell to the ground, he laughed. "Let's see her roll now." The other hobgoblins cheered and yelled for the dragon to get her.

Heidi looked up in the direction the arrow came from and saw she now had a large audience armed with bows and spears. Tossing the crystal at the dragon's head, she used her magic to temporarily blind it. After ducking the massive tail, Heidi quickly pulled the arrow from her knee and tossed it aside. Limping, she tried to make it back to the tunnel.

Seeing where she was headed, the hobgoblins chucked the spears at her and shot arrows to turn her back the other way. Heidi dodged the best she could and used her sword to deflect as many arrows as she could. She was so distracted by the hobgoblins that she almost missed the dragon's claw coming for her. She rammed her sword in the dragon's foot and ran for it, hoping to use the dragon to block the arrows and spears.

The dragon roared in anger at having the sword in its foot and turned to follow her. Just before she reached the tunnel, the dragon took and deep breath and sent a wave of flames at her. Heidi dove for the tunnel and managed to make it inside with only her feet being hit by the flames. She crawled further in the tunnel and quickly patted down her burning shoes and pant legs. "That was too close" She sighed. Looking back she could see the dragon trying to reach its claw into the tunnel to get her. "Better luck next time lizard lips." She grinned and leaned back against the wall.

Before she could relax she heard it, the machine was coming. Heidi looked up and saw it headed in her direction. She had the machine coming down the tunnel and an angry dragon and bloodthirsty mob of hobgoblins waiting for her outside. There was no where to go and no way out.

Chapter Text

Jareth and Sarah made themselves comfortable on the couch and watched Heidi attempt to beat the Labyrinth. As she ran around in circles, Sarah tried to look for openings that she was missing, but her view through the crystal wasn't the greatest. "There are openings aren't there?"

Jareth chuckled. "Of course, she's just not seeing them."

"Would I have run in circles if that little worm hadn't told me to try going through the wall?"

"Perhaps." He kissed her head. "Good thing for me that worm never got the chance to tell you why you don't go to the left at that particular opening."

"Why? What was to the left?" Sarah asked as she turned her head to look behind her at the smirking Goblin King.

"The path straight to the castle." His smirk turned to a full smile, showing his pointed teeth as he tried not to laugh at her outraged expression. "I would have intervened if you had gone that way."

"Can't believe I trusted a worm" she sighed.

Jareth chuckled, "I won't hold it against you Precious." He wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her closer to him. "I'll show you every route to and from the castle. One day you'll know the Labyrinth as well as I do."

"I found a faster way to the castle when I visited last time." Sarah informed him with a smirk.

"Oh?" He asked as one hand drew lazy circles on her arm.

"I just touched the wall and a direct path opened up for me."

"What?" Jareth loosened his hold on her. "A path just opened for you?" She nodded. "I knew the Labyrinth would take care of you because you're the champion, but I never expected it to give you perks that even I don't get." He pouted.

Sarah chuckled. "Well I can't simply appear where I want at will like you can so I think its fair. I still had to walk to the castle."

"True, but knowing my temperamental Labyrinth it will always favor you over me." Jareth pulled her hair back and placed a kiss on her neck. "Its something I can live with though, for it means you're here with me."

Sarah smiled and leaned her head to the side, allowing him better access to her neck. "I think you'd put up with just about anything if it meant me staying here."

Jareth continued kissing along her neck. "You are absolutely 100% correct my love." He nuzzled her neck and held her tight. "I would happily stay here, like this, with you for the next hundred years."

Sarah shook her head. "I'm still human you know, I'd be dead before you were ready to let me go."

"I can always correct that little issue, then we'd have centuries to be together." Jareth whispered as he nibbled on her ear.

"Jareth..." She turned her head to look at him.

He cupped her chin in his hand and leaned closer slowly. He gazed into her emerald eyes as his lips covered hers in a soft kiss. Sarah turned slowly and wrapped her arms around his neck. "My Precious Sarah." He whispered before kissing her again, this time with more force. His tongue pushed against her lips, seeking entrance and she happily permitted it. Their tongues battled for dominance as the kiss became more passionate.

When they finally separated, they were both panting for air. Sarah ran her fingers through his hair as she kissed along his jaw. She stopped her trail of kisses when a loud rumble came from between them. She closed her eyes and tried not to laugh. "Sorry." She mumbled.

Jareth laughed when he realized a moment later it had been her stomach grumbling. "Feeling hungry Precious?"

She looked down bashfully. "I guess I am."

Smiling, Jareth kissed her forehead. "Then I shall get us some dinner." He summoned a crystal to his hand and tossed it up. Suddenly two plates appeared on the floor along with two glasses. Jareth sat up, gently shifting Sarah as he did. He reached down and handed her a plate. "Here you go Precious." He grabbed one of the plates and handed it to her, along with a glass and silverware.
"Thanks." She said with a smile as she took the plate and glass. Placing the plate on her lap, she slowly ate the dinner, Jareth provided.

"You're welcome." Jareth replied as he grabbed the other plate and glass. They ate quietly as they watched Heidi continue to struggle with her challenge of the Labyrinth.

After Sarah ate she placed the empty dishes on the floor and stood to stretch. She and Jareth both made trips to the rest room and chatted for quite sometime, completely ignoring Heidi. Eventually Sarah went to bed for the night, while Jareth remained by the crystal, watching Heidi's run.

Next morning, Sarah found Jareth still sitting by the crystal. She sat by him and watched him for a moment. He was staring at the crystal, but didn't seem to be actually paying attention to it. "Morning Jareth." She said with a smile. When he didn't respond she reached over and touched his arm.

Feeling her touch, Jareth looked over. "Sarah. When did you get up?"

"A bit ago. I said good morning to you, but you didn't seem to hear me." She replied.

"Sorry I was just thinking."

Sarah nodded and scooted closer to Jareth. She wrapped her arm around his and leaned her head against his shoulder. "Everything alright?"

"Yes." He said before kissing the top of her head. "Nothing for you to worry about."

When Sarah finally glanced at the crystal, she was surprised by what she saw. "She's in the forest."

Jareth looked and shook his head. "She picked the wrong place to be with me not being at the castle."

"What?" Sarah looked at Jareth. "What's in the forest?"

"Fierys." Jareth stated. "You met them, though they were simply playing with you. Fierys hate Fae and with good reason. They'll go after her and they won't simply want to play like they did with you."

Sarah looked back at the crystal and saw Heidi surrounded by the Fierys. They looked a lot scarier than we she faced them. "Are those really the same creatures?"

Nodding, Jareth sighed. "Fierys are by nature playful creatures, but years of being hunted by Fae made them cruel and ruthless. In the wild they look and act like that. The five that have taken up residence in my Labyrinth are a little different. They know they are safe and we have an agreement. They are free to roam the forest and play as they want as long as they don't harm my runners." Jareth looked away from the crystal and reached out and took Sarah's face in his hands and made her look at him.

"Are they going to kill her?" Sarah asked.

"If they can, they will. I doubt they will suceed though. Heidi is a skilled fighter, equal to myself in skill." Jareth informed her. When she tried to look back at the crystal he grabbed her and kept her looking at him. "You don't want to watch Precious. The Fierys are extremely vicious. They won't be gentle with her."

"So I really was in danger?" Sarah's eyes were wide.

"They would never harm a human. When they said they were going to take off your head, they were joking. If Hoggle hadn't appeared, I would have. They do that. Make the runner fear them and then I normally swoop in and rescue them and offer them a way out if they give up on the child." Jareth stated as he summoned a crystal.

"So if Hoggle hadn't shown up you would have offered me my dreams again?" Sarah asked as she watched him juggle a crystal.

"No, I sent Hoggle to you with that peach. He was supposed to give it to you right away, but well you caused him to get distracted." Jareth responded.

"What did I do?" She asked innocently.

"You know very well what you did you little vixen." Jareth made the crystal in his hand vanish and pulled her onto his lap. "You gave that little rodent what I was longing for."

Sarah knew what Jareth was referring to and decided to tease him a bit. "Oh? I had no idea you loved plastic jewelry so much."

Jareth growled. "You know good and well I have no interest in your silly costume jewelry." He wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her closer until her body was flush against his." He rubbed his nose softly against hers. "I do believe you enjoy giving me what I want as much as I enjoy receiving it."

Sarah smiled and wrapped her arms around his neck. "Oh I don't know." She almost purred. "I may enjoy it a bit more than you." She tilted her head and inched closer til their lips were almost touching.

"Sarah..." Jareth whispered her name before closing the remaining distance between them by capturing her lips in a searing kiss. A quiet moan escaped her throat as Jareth moved his lips over hers. His hands roamed over her body slowly, as his tongue explored her mouth.

When he pulled away and began kissing along her jaw and down her neck, Sarah ran her hands through his hair. "Oh Jareth..."

"Yes Precious?" He asked with a smirk as he continued to kiss her neck.

"Do you have any idea what you do to me?" She said before letting out a quiet moan as his hands kneaded the muscles in her lower back.

"Hopefully at least half of what you do to me love." He kissed her cheek and held her tight against him. "I can't seem to control myself when you're near. I have this undeniable need to hold you in my arms."

Sarah laid her head against his shoulder. "I love being in your arms too." She nuzzled his neck.

Smiling, Jareth gave her a gentle squeeze and glanced once again at the crystal. "So she got away from the Fierys."

Sarah looked up and looked at the crystal. "She looks horrible. The fierys did that to her?"

Jareth nodded. "She was lucky. She got off easy."

They watched as she limped through the forest, trying to put distance between herself and the Fierys. When she stopped and sat by a tree, Sarah sat up and looked closer at the crystal. "Jareth is healing magic something every Fae has or just a few?"

"If you're wondering why she isn't healing her wounds, I have no idea. She is quite capable of doing so." Jareth responded.

"What is that?" Sarah asked when a new creature that she had never seen before appeared.

Chuckling, Jareth sat up and adjusted his gloves. "The one creature that is completely harmless. Your rock caller friend is more dangerous." Jareth told her. "That is the Minotaur."

"Minotaur?" Sarah looked at him then at the crystal and then back at Jareth and started laughing. "Seriously? You have a Minotaur in the Labyrinth?"

"I fail to see the humor in that."

Once she got her laughter under control, she wiped her eyes and told Jareth the myth of Thesisus and his defeat of the Minotaur that was the guardian of a Labyrinth. "So the fact that you actually have a Minotaur is rather amusing."

"I see, well that would be why the poor fellow is here. Everyone expects him to be a mean and vicious guardian. He's harmless. He just wanted to be left alone and allowed to eat all the fruit he can find. So I permitted him to live safely in my Kingdom." Jareth explained.

"Poor guy. I guess its not easy looking so scary and being a kind soul." Sarah said as she leaned back on the couch. "I guess you get a lot of unwanted creatures here."

Nodding, Jareth sighed. "Most of the Kingdom is made of up those that came seeking aid. They were hunted, tortured, persecuted, or banished from their own homes. I offer a safe haven to any that need it. All I ask is they listen and obey me. The first rule is that no human may be hurt unless I say otherwise."

"Why would you give them permission to harm a human?" Sarah almost demanded. She was a little shocked that he would even do such a thing.

"Justice for the child." He answered. "I've gotten some babies that were almost dead because of the abuse of the wisher. If such a person wishes away a child and then tries to reclaim it, I tell them do as they wish and let them see the condition of the poor child. I then leave the runner to my subject while I tend to the child. Anyone that would harm a child in the way I've seen doesn't deserve my protection."

"But killing or allowing them to be killed doesn't make you any better than the human that abused the child Jareth. That isn't justice." Sarah argued.

"Sarah, things work differently here. Surely you've seen that already. The time they spend in my Labyrinth is the only chance I have to give the child justice, and that is if they choose to run the Labyrinth. Many are simply happy to give me the child either to be rid of them or to protect them from the abuser." Jareth stood. "Sarah I know our ways are different but you have to understand my job is not an easy one."

"But you still have to be a just King. You can't just kill someone, no matter the reason. Everyone has a right to defend themselves." Sarah argued.

"I give them the chance to defend themselves. If they can survive the Labyrinth they get to live." Jareth crossed his arms over his chest.

"Please tell me you've never killed a human." Sarah stared into his eyes.

Jareth sighed. "I have, but it was not a runner. I've had to kill humans to defend myself many years ago. That's a long story, but the answer you're wanting is I've never killed a runner. I simply left them to fend for themselves against the creatures in my Labyrinth." He stated before turning his back to her.

"Has a human ever died in the Labyrinth?"

Jareth was silent for several moments before he answered. "No, they've all begged me for their lives and I returned them to the Aboveground with the warning that should they ever harm a child again, I would return for them." He turned his back to her and remained silent.

Sarah stared at his back. She was happy to hear he hadn't killed or allowed a runner to be killed, but his attitude about it still bothered her. She also had a bad feel about the long story he mentioned. Not knowing what else to say, she stared at the crystal. Heidi was facing the two doors with the shield guardians. "She'll never figure out the riddle." Sarah mumbled.

Jareth turned back to gaze into the crystal. "This should be interesting." He and Sarah watched as she tried to figure out the riddle. Jareth chuckled when she chose the red door.

"She got it wrong didn't she?" Sarah asked.

"Perhaps." Jareth rubbed his chin and continued watching.

"Wait, there's a trap door through both doors?" Sarah asked.

"Yes Precious. Its the second part of the riddle. Now will she choose up or down?"

As they watched her fall down the shaft with the helping hands, there was a knock on the door. Jareth groaned and went to answer the door. He found his cousin Alastair pacing in front of the house. Hearing the door open, Alastair turned to look at Jareth. "Cousin, please hear me out and forgive my intrusion."

Jareth sighed. "Be quick about it."

"Its Heidi. She's gone crazy. Saying she'll beat the Labyrinth and win the throne. Jaxel and I tried to stop her, but she managed to sneak out of the palace. I can't find her anywhere." Alastair explained.

"I know where she is. Come on inside." Jareth said before turning and going back inside.

Alastair quickly followed and closed the door behind him. He followed his cousin to the sitting area where Sarah was still watching the crystal. "Lady Sarah."

Sarah looked up and smiled. "Hello Alastair."

"My cousin has come to warn us, a little too late, that Heidi intends to challenge the Labyrinth." Jareth told her as he sat in a chair across from her. "We have been watching her progress in the crystal."

"She's in the Labyrinth?" Alastair rushed over and looked into the crystal. "How far is she?"

"She's been at it for close to eleven hours." Jareth told him. "She will not reach the castle."
Alastair glanced at Jareth and then back to the crystal. "You're certain?"

Jareth nodded. "The path she's taking only leads to one place and its in the opposite direction from the castle."

"So she did get the riddle wrong." Sarah said with a smirk.

Jareth almost laughed at how pleased she seemed by that fact. "Yes she failed both parts." He looked away as he thought about Heidi's possible fate. Sarah wasn't going to be pleased.

"What about me?" Sarah asked.

Jareth looked at her again. "What?"

"Did I pass both?" She inquired. "Obviously I passed at least one part since she failed both. So I'm certain that means I picked the correct door, but did I choose the right way with the helping hands?"

Alastair looked back and forth between them. "Is she always this competitive?"

Jareth grinned. "Not normally, unless she's going up against me that is. I think she was a little worried that Heidi might actually beat the Labyrinth and have a claim on her throne."

"Its not my throne." Sarah mumbled.

"Yet." Jareth said, which earned him a glare from Sarah. "To answer your question Precious, you failed the second part. If you had gone up the path led straight to the castle."

"What!?" Sarah couldn't believe it.

Chuckling, Jareth scooted closer and wrapped his arm around her. "What's wrong Sarah?"

"You mean I had two possible straight paths to the castle and I missed both?"

"Afraid so love." He kissed her softly. "But don't fret, you still managed to beat me."

Alastair smirked. "So seems like things have changed a bit since I left Lady Sarah."

Sarah looked at Alastair. "I don't know what you mean."

"Well you told me that you were simply friends with my cousin." He couldn't help but laugh lightly as Jareth tightened his hold on her. "It seems that isn't true anymore."

Sarah blushed a little and nodded. "Yes Jareth and I are dating now."

"Dating?" Alastair tilted his head in confusion.

"It means courting, cousin." Jareth informed him. "In the aboveground they call it dating and their rituals for it aren't as strict as the traditional rules for courting, but I'm courting my Sarah none the less."

Grinning from ear to ear, Alastair sat in a chair. "Congratulations cousin, and you too Lady Sarah. I wish you both happiness. I have to say Lady Sarah, I've never seen Jareth so happy as he's been since you came back into his life. I know you'll take good care of him."

"So far he's been taking care of me mostly." Sarah responded.

"And I will continue to do so." He kissed her forehead and looked at his cousin. "Well personally I'd like to tell you to leave, but I know Sarah would consider me rude if I did that, so Alastair would you like to join us for lunch?"

"Well, well this is a change." Alastair smiled at Sarah. "You're being a wonderful influence on him already my dear." Looking back to Jareth, Alastair nodded. "I'd love to join you for lunch, but what about Heidi?"

"She'll be fine for now. Nothing too dangerous in her path at the moment. We'll monitor her progress in the crystal." Jareth answered.

"Alright." Alastair watched her avoid one trap after another as Jareth summoned up food for the three of them. They ate and chatted quietly, occasionally glancing at the crystal to check on Heidi.

With each trap that Heidi managed to get past, the corridor slowly got narrower and darker. By the they were done with their lunch, Jareth saw she was in the catacombs. 'Not long now' he thought. He summoned another crystal and took a look at the timer that was in his throne room. "She only has an hour left." Jareth told them as he made the second crystal disappear.

"What happens when time runs out?" Sarah asked.

"That depends on where she is at the time. Most likely she'll be tossed into an oubliette." Jareth told her.

Sarah nodded and stared at the crystal. Then a thought occurred to her. "Jareth, if I choose the wrong way with the helping hands, and wound up in the oubliette, why did you send Hoggle to get me?"

"So that he could take you back to the beginning of the Labyrinth of course." Jareth said as if that should have been completely obvious.

"Yes I know but why?" She asked.

"I'm not sure I understand what you're asking Sarah."

Alastair sat forward watching with interest. "I think I may know where she's going with this."

Jareth glared at him then looked back to Sarah. "What is it you want to know?"

"If Hoggle hadn't shown up and opened the door, I wouldn't have gotten out of the oubliette. So why send him to get me if I was trapped? You could have just left me there and I would have failed." Sarah stated. "So why not just leave me there?"

"Like I would ever leave you in an oubliette. No I wanted him to take you to the beginning and have you loose hope and beg me to either send you home, or perhaps send the baby home and allow you to take his place."

"You would have exchanged her for the baby?" Alastair asked.

"In a heartbeat." Jareth said without hesitation. "Even before I realized I was in love with her I wanted her here. The more she fought me, the more I wanted her."

"Jareth..."

"Truth be told, when we were in the catacombs I nearly kissed you." Jareth caressed her cheek. "I wanted to take you to the castle right then and there, but you had to make your comment about the Labyrinth being a piece of cake."

"And your ego was wounded." Sarah teased.

"Amazing, someone that can actually harm my cousin's ego." Alastair laughed.

Jareth ignored his cousin. "Yes, well I couldn't have you thinking our game was too easy Precious."

Alastair shook his head as he watched them. He was certain they had forgotten he was even there. Glancing at the crystal he watched as Heidi ran from a strange machine. "What is that thing?"

Sarah glanced over and recognized it immediately. "The cleaners."

Jareth also looked and nodded. "I see she found the cleaners. Too bad for her the path behind is now blocked." He sighed and prepared for what he knew was coming.

They watched her run through the catacombs until she reached the coliseum. Sarah started to ask what it was, but forgot about it when she saw the dragon. "You have a dragon?"

"Yes, the poor fellow was going to be killed by his own kind." Jareth explained. "He was poisoned by a dark Fae centuries ago, back when there were two courts."

"Two courts?" Sarah asked.

"A story for another time dearest. This unfortunate dragon went mad because of the poison. They kept him locked up for centuries after he killed almost an entire brood of dragons. I happened to hear about him when I was visiting the Dragon Kingdom. They were debating killing him as they felt he was too dangerous to keep locked up."

"But how did he end up in your Labyrinth cousin?"

"I pleaded on his behalf and offered to keep him in my Kingdom in an area he would be secure and safe. I've never seen the Labyrinth actually lead someone to him before." Jareth spoke the truth, but he had known the moment she chose up that she was heading for the dragon's pit.

Sarah looked back to the crystal and watched her fight the dragon. "Does she have a chance?"

"Heidi is very skilled. She's taken on a dragon before, but she still has her injuries from the fierys and I believe her odds are getting worse." Jareth stated.

It didn't take long for Sarah to see what he was talking about. All around her were strange goblins she had never seen before. They were larger and viscious looking compared to the small lovable goblins she knew. "Are those goblins?"

"Those are Hobgoblins. They make up my elite guard." Jareth told her. "They are almost as deadly as the dragon itself."

"Jareth you have to help her!" Sarah pleaded after seeing her take an arrow to the knee.

"Why should I? She brought this on herself." He said coldly.

"She'll be killed!" Sarah exclaimed.

"Quite possibly." Was all Jareth said.

"Lady Sarah, as much as I'd hate to see it happen Jareth is correct. Heidi knew the risk when she challenged the Labyrinth." Alastair said.

"Jareth you said no one has ever died in the Labyrinth." Sarah was glaring at him.

"No human has ever died in it. Many from the Underground have challenged it and lost their lives though. Since I became King no one had died in the Labyrinth; though it seems Heidi may be the first." Jareth avoided her gaze.

"Lady Sarah everyone knows how dangerous the Labyrinth is. Many before Jareth tried to conquer it and never returned. Heidi knew this when she went in." Alastair added.

"That doesn't mean we should simply let her die. Please Jareth, there must be something you can do." Sarah pleaded.

"I can not. As King I have to let runners complete their run. Unless she calls to me I can't interfere. Being away from the castle I have no control over her run. Heidi is facing the Labyrinth at its hardest completely alone. If I go now and try to stop it the Labyrinth may stop responding to me. Remember it is a living being itself. It obeys me for the most part because I beat it, but if I go against it on something like this I'm not sure what will happen." Jareth explained, hoping she would understand.

Sarah looked to Alastair. "Is there anything you can do?"

"I'm afraid not my Lady, though I am curious why you are so determined to save her? Heidi wishes you ill and wants to take your place at Jareth's side. I even believe she would go so far as to kill you. So why would you wish to save her?" Alastair asked.

Sarah blinked and thought a moment. "It doesn't matter what she's said or done, no one deserves to die. Please if there's anything you can do to save her I ask that you do so."

Alastair looked from her to Jareth. "I'm can't. Jareth has a barrier around the entire Labyrinth. I can't get past the main gate. Once inside I have to walk everywhere. I'd never reach her in time."

Sarah turned to Jareth. "Can you drop the barrier long enough to let Alastair inside to save her?"

"Not from here Precious. I'd have to be at the castle." Jareth responded. "Sarah you have to accept the fact that even with magic there are things that still can not be done."

Sarah looked back at the crystal and saw Heidi back in the tunnel with the dragon trying to claw at her. "If there's a barrier that prevents you from using magic to get around how are you able to do it Jareth?"

"My direct link to the Labyrinth." He replied.

"Direct link to the Labyrinth..." She mumbled.

When Jareth saw the cleaners heading for Heidi in the crystal, he reached out for it. "I believe its time to stop watching. There's nothing that can be done.

"Would my medallion allow someone to use magic freely like yours does?"

"What?" He froze and looked at Sarah.

"Would my medallion allow someone to use magic freely?" She asked again.

"I suppose, but Precious you don't have magic." Jareth protested.

Before either could say a word, Sarah took her medallion off and handed it to Alastair. "Please hurry and save her."

"What?" Alastair was shocked. "You have the seal of the King." He looked at his cousin then back to Sarah.

Sighing, Jareth stood. "Go Alastair. Hurry and save Heidi as my Lady wishes. Take her to the castle and have her injuries treated before you take her home." He stated as he walked over to the window and stared out.

Alastair nodded and took the medallion. Rushing outside he hurried to the Labyrinth. Sarah stared intently at the crystal, praying he would make it in time.

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

Heidi looked back and forth between the machine heading for her and the dragon waiting at the exit of the tunnel. "Damn it!" Summoning a crystal to her hand, she decided to go back out with the dragon. She hoped the machine would reach the end of the tunnel and then exit it or turn around. She threw the crystal and flames erupted from it when it collided with the dragon's massive claw. When it withdrew its claw, Heidi dashed out and ran around it.

The cleaners continued to the end of the tunnel and stopped at the exit. Heidi's hope of it coming out or turning around was quickly dashed. She stared at the now blocked entrance to the tunnel and nearly screamed. She was trapped and she knew it. She was so focused on her only chance of escape being blocked that she almost didn't dodge the tail of the dragon as it swung at her. She barely got out of the way in time only to have a spear hit her shoulder. She cried out in pain and pulled the spear from her shoulder and threw it at the dragon.

"I will not die here!" She slashed with her sword and dodged attacks from the dragon and the hobgoblins. The harder she fought, the more they came after her. Arrows hit her, spears grazed her, and the dragon's claws ripped her flesh. No matter how many injuries she received, Heidi wouldn't give up. She threw various magical attacks at the hobgoblins and used her sword against the dragon. After a while the hobgoblin's attacks were fewer and fewer; either her attacks were working or they ran out of weapons she wasn't sure which it was and couldn't look for fear of the dragon getting her.

Suddenly the dragon managed to get a good hit on her and knocked her against the arena wall. Her sword was knocked from her hand and her right arm was broken in several places. She cried out and clutched her side with her left arm. The hobgoblins started cheering for the dragon and waited for it to finish her off. As the dragon came closer, Heidi summoned a crystal. She focus all her remaining energy into it. This was it. Either it worked or she would die. Using her last strength, she threw it at the dragon. There was a loud explosion and the arena filled with a cloud of dust.
When the cloud dissipated, Heidi was barely conscious and the dragon was still standing over her and it was pissed. The dragon roared and extended its wings. Heidi closed her eyes and waited for the end. She knew it was over. She had no more strength to fight. The dragon stepped closer and opened its mouth to blast her with flames. Just as it was about to release its breath weapon, Alastair appeared in front of Heidi. "Oh no you don't!" He threw a crystal at the dragon and the flame was redirected so it missed them. Alastair quickly scooped up Heidi and they both vanished, leaving a very angry and dragon and hoard of hobgoblins behind.

Alastair appeared in Jareth's throne room to find a bunch of of passed out goblins. Looking around he wondered where Jareth expected him to have her wounds healed. Sighing he carried the now unconscious Heidi to the room Jareth had allowed him to use and placed her on the bed. "I guess I'm the one that is going to heal your wounds."

~*~*~*//..//~*~*~*~

A couple of hours later Heidi woke up and was in immense pain. As she tried to sit up, Alastiar rushed over and pushed her back down gently. "Take it easy. You were injured pretty badly. I healed what I could, but I'm not the best at healing magic."

"Where am I?" Heidi asked as she looked around.

"You're at Jareth's castle." Alastair answered as he pulled the blanket back over her.

"How? Wait my run!" She tried once more to sit up, but Alastiar held her down.

"Relax. You failed the run and you were almost killed by the dragon. I got there just in time to get you out before the dragon killed you with its breath weapon." He explained.

"You? How?"

"I was given permission from Jareth to save you and given a medallion that allowed me to use my magic to travel about the Labyrinth."

Heidi smiled. "I knew Jareth would see that I'm the one that deserves to be his Queen."

"Wrong Heidi." Alastair sighed. "He wanted to leave you to die."

"But you just said..."

"It was Lady Sarah." He told her.

"The pathetic human?" Heidi asked.

"She begged Jareth to save you. When he refused she begged me to do something and gave me her medallion. Jareth allowed me to save you because she asked it." Alastair explained as he stood. "Get some rest. Once you're able to travel we're leaving. Although you really do owe Lady Sarah your life. If I were you I would give up on becoming the Goblin Queen. Jareth has already found the perfect woman." And with that he left her alone in the room.

"The human begged them to save me?" Heidi stared at the ceiling. "Why on Earth would she do that?"

Chapter Text

Heidi stared up at the ceiling. She couldn't get over the fact that the human had saved her life. It made no sense at all. Did she know who Heidi was or her intentions towards the human? Heidi sat up slowly and looked around. She'd been to the castle beyond the Goblin City many times, but she had never seen any of the bedrooms. Jareth usually sent everyone home the moment the balls or banquets he hosted were over.

Noticing a figure sitting in a chair by the fire, Heidi slowly got up and walked over. Her whole body ached and her head was throbbing, but she didn't want to just lay in bed. When she reached the chair, she found Alastair, sound asleep. A slight smile crossed her lips as she watched him. The human may have been the one to beg to have her saved, but Alastair was the one that had physically saved her life. He rescued her from the dragon and the goblin horde.

Grabbing a blanket from the bed, she covered Alastair with it and then made herself comfortable on the couch. As she gazed into the flames that were dancing in the fireplace, she continued to ponder the mystery that was Sarah Williams.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

Sarah sat across from Jareth in awkward silence at dinner that night. She had barely spoken to him after Alastair left to rescue Heidi. When his cousin returned the medallion to her, Jareth noticed her hesitate to put it back around her neck. He watched her pick at her food, her eyes glued to her plate. Sighing he set his fork down. The silence was killing him. "Sarah." He called out to her. She didn't look up at him at first, but when she did he smiled soflty at her. "Precious, please talk to me. I know you're unhappy with how I handled things with Heidi, but you must understand my position."

She dropped her fork and shook her head. "Jareth how could you just leave her to die?"

"Sarah as I told you, as the King I have to follow certain rules, just as any other citizen of my Kingdom. I'm not allowed to save a runner with out them calling for me." Jareth tried to make her understand.

"You said you made sure no harm came to me." Sarah stated as she stared at him.

"Yes and you were a child, a human child. The Labyrinth itself had no desire to harm you, so my small interferences didn't go against the wishes of the Labyrinth. Heidi is a grown Fae with no respect for the Labyrinth or its Champion. The Labyrinth lead her to the dragon. It was its intent to let her die a painful death." He explained. "I may not like it, but it is how things work."

"Will the Labyrinth be upset that you allowed Heidi to be saved?" Sarah asked.

"I honestly don't know." Jareth responded. "I can still feel the warmth from its magic, not how it responds when its unhappy with me, but time will tell."

Sarah lifted her own medallion and held it in her hand. As Jareth said it felt warm and pleasant. "Jareth if the the Labyrinth..."

He held his hand up. "Shh... no need to worry my dear. It wouldn't be the first time it was unhappy with me." He reached across the table and placed his hand over hers. "Sarah I know things like this are hard for you, but please don't think less of me for it. I truly didn't want her to die, but sometimes there isn't any thing I can do. Being away from the castle made it harder for me to help her. I'm too far to influence the Labyrinth. She knew I was away and ran it anyway." He shook his head. "Foolish woman."

"What will happen to her now?" Sarah asked as she turned her hand over and linked it with his.

"She'll be healed and sent home." He told her. "Now finish your dinner. No need worrying over this any longer. Heidi is safe at the castle. Alastair will take care of her."

Sarah nodded and gave his hand a gentle squeeze before pulling hers away and resuming her meal. They continued their meal in silence, but occasionally both looked up and when their eyes met, they both smiled and continued eating.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

Alastair woke some time later to see Heidi asleep on the couch. He grinned, stood, and took the blanket she had placed over him and laid it on the back of the chair. He stretched and walked over to the fireplace. Taking the stoker, he poked at the dying embers of the fire. He chuckled to himself as he thought of the events of the day. He had seen a side of his cousin he was sure no one beside Sarah ever saw. He also saw the girl do something no one dared to do. She stood up to Jareth and got him to change his mind.

Smirking, he looked over at the sleeping woman behind him. Best of all he got to be the hero that rushed in and saved the girl. He just hoped that saving her was the correct choice. He had known Heidi since they were children. When she set her sights on something, it was damn near impossible to change her mind. But then the same was true for Jareth.

Alastair had only just met Sarah, but he liked her. He liked how she made his cousin and he liked that she didn't bow down to him like a timid child. He truly wanted things between them to work out for the best. He just hoped that Heidi now would see that she should give up on being the Goblin Queen. He also prayed that his aunt would leave them alone, but he doubted it.

Seeing Heidi stir, Alastair walked over and felt her forehead. She didn't have a fever, which was good. But he still worried that her injuries might not heal properly with out a proper healer. Sighing he left the room to see if any of the goblins were conscious and sober enough to help him. He was happily surprised by who he found in the throne room.

"Well, well, if it isn't the dwarf that likes to lead us through the bog." Alastair grinned.

"Likes?" Hoggle shook his head. "Jareth makes me do it. I hates the bog."

"Understandable." Alastair knelt so he was eye level with the dwarf. "I need your assistance."

"You... you do?"

"Yes, the Lady Heidi is still in a lot of pain and I'm not sure my healing magic will allow her to fully recover. Does my cousin have a healer?" Alastair asked.

"Himself." Hoggle replied. "I say let her suffers. She knew the risks. She should feel extremely luck the King lets you come gets her."

Alastair nodded. "Yes she did make a foolish decision and she is incredibly lucky. If not for Lady Sarah, she would be dead."

"Sarah? What's she gots to do with it?"

"She convinced Jareth to let me rescue her. Anyway, is there a healer nearby other than my cousin?" Alastair inquired.

"No there ain't, and why would Sarah do that?"

"You'll have to ask her that. Now I need you to go and fetch my cousin. I'm hoping you're closeness with Lady Sarah will make it easier for you to retrieve him. Sarah won't let him harm you, and she'll convince my cousin to use his magic to heal Heidi." Alastair explained as he stood.

"Now why should I do that?" Hoggle asked as he put his hands on his hips. "She wants to takes our Sarah's place at Jareth's side. She was nasty to us, and she might hurts Sarah if she has a chance."

"Trust me, my wrinkly friend. I have a plan to convince her to leave Sarah and Jareth alone. Just go get my cousin, and bring Sarah too if you can."

Hoggle shook his head. "I hopes you knows what you're doing." He said before he headed for the door.

"I hope so too." Alastair said with a sigh as he headed back upstairs to check on Heidi.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

After dinner, Jareth and Sarah sat in front of the fireplace. Sarah was laying in front of the fire, a book in hand, reading quietly. Jareth was a few feet away in a chair, just watching her. After their talk at dinner, things were slowly getting back to normal, but Jareth decided it best to give her space, let her come to him.

After rereading the same line for the 5th time, Sarah sighed and closed the book. She looked up at Jareth and shook her head. "You know I can feel you staring, right?"

Smirking, Jareth crossed his legs and shrugged. "What can I say Precious, I can't take my eyes off you."

"Well why don't you come sit with me?" She patted the empty place beside her.

He didn't hesitate for a second. He was at her side as fast as he could be. "Better?"

"Almost." She grinned. She placed the book on the floor and moved so that she was sitting on his lap, her arms around his neck. "There, that's better."

Jareth chuckled as he wrapped his arms around her waist. "I thought you were still mad at me?"

"I can't stay mad at you, and I don't like being mad at you." Sarah answered. She leaned her forehead against his. "I know its not always easy for you, being King and all. I guess I just get so used to you being, well you..." She shook her head. "You know what I mean?"

He nodded slightly. "You've seen what no one else has. The real me. The me I am when I'm not being a King."

"Exactly." Sarah smiled and rubbed her nose against his. "I'm so used to you the way you are in private that I forget sometimes of the immense responsibilities you have. There are still so many things about you, your Kingdom, and the Underground in general that I don't know about or understand."

He pulled her close, resting his head on top of hers. "I will happily teach you anything you want or need to know. All you need do is ask." He ran his hands up and down her back, rubbing soothing circles. "Thank you for being so understanding. I really don't deserve you."

"Enough beating yourself up Goblin King. You're not as bad as you like to think you are." Sarah replied as she pulled back to look him in the eyes. "You may be a little rough around the edges, but I like you just the way you are." She leaned in and kissed him softly.

Jareth returned her kiss and deepened it, his hands wandering lower and lower. Sarah let out a soft moan as his hands massaged her lower back and slowly went lower until they were rubbing her butt. Sarah ran her fingers through his hair and let her self get lost in the moment. All that she cared about what the wonderful feelings his hands and lips were causing.

Breaking the kiss, Jareth started kissing along her jaw, down her neck and softly kissed and licked her skin. He slowly brought one hand around her body and inched it towards her chest. There were so many things he wanted to do with her, to her, and for her. He wanted to give her the most pleasure he could, but he wasn't sure how much she would let him do. Testing the waters, he slowly cupped her right breast and caressed it. Hearing her moan, he grinned and continued. His fingers stroked the area around her nipple while his other handed kneaded the firm flesh of her ass. He continued kissing her neck, her quiet moans only encouraging him to please her more.

"Jareth..." The way she said his name was like music to his ears.

"Say it again." He requested.

"What?"

"Say my name again." He told her as he pinched her nipple between his fingers. When she moaned his name, he closed his eyes in pleasure. He never knew something so simple as hearing her call out his name could give him such pleasure.

Sarah's body felt like it was on fire. Everywhere he touched was almost electric. She wanted him to touch her all over. She wanted to know how his hands felt on her bare skin. With out thinking, she pulled her shirt over her head and tossed it behind her. Jareth was a little surprised by her actions, but didn't let that stop him. He brought his other hand up and massaged both her breasts through her bra. Soon both her nipples were hard little peaks clearly visible through the thin fabric of her bra.

"Sarah, my precious Sarah." He whispered in her ear. She grabbed his hands and pulled them from her breasts. Jareth stopped kissing her neck and looked at her, afraid he had gone too far. He watched as she removed his gloves, one at a time. "Sarah?"

"I want to feel your bare hands on my skin." She said. Her eyes were dark and lust filled.

"Sarah, be careful. I'm not sure I can't stop touching you once I start." Jareth warned.

She ran her hands along the opening of his shirt and slowly unfastened the remaining buttons. "I trust you and I want this. Bottoms have to stay on though."

Jareth nodded and helped her remove his shirt. It quickly joined hers on the floor behind them. Once his shirt was off, Sarah ran her hands along the muscles of his stomach and chest, exploring every inch with her fingers. She had seen him with out a shirt, but she never imagined he would be so muscular or soft to the touch.

A groan escaped his throat as her fingers ghosted over his skin. He leaned over and kissed down her neck and shoulder, slowly moving her bra strap to the side. His lips traveled down along the bra, kissing and licking any skin available to him. He covered her chest with warm kisses as his bare hands explored every inch of her. Deciding to tempt his luck, Jareth pulled one side of her bra down slowly until he could see her nipple. He ran his tongue over the firm little bud slowly.

Sarah's head fell back as she moaned. His tongue felt wonderful on her skin, but the moment he licked her sensitive nipple, she was in heaven. She gripped his hair with her hands, gently holding him in place. "Ohhhh Jareth."

Suddenly there was a banging on the door. Jareth groaned, but didn't stop his caresses. When there was another knock, Sarah pushed him away and got up, grabbing her shirt. "Sarah?" Jareth called as he stood and went to her.

She quickly pulled her shirt on and headed for the door. "I'll kill them. Whoever it is, I will kill them." She grumbled as she headed to the door. Jareth chuckled as he followed her. This he had to see.

Sarah threw the door open. "What the hell do you..." She stopped when she saw who was at the door. "Hoggle?"

"Hi, Sarah." Hoggle said nervously.

Jareth came up beside her and leaned against the door frame. "Well, I'm waiting Precious." He smirked.

"For what?"

"For you to kill him." Jareth's eyes almost seemed to twinkle with laughter. "Isn't that what you said as you made your way to the door?"

Hoggle slowly backed away and watched the door carefully. He didn't think Sarah would harm him, but he never knew what Jareth might do. "I didn't... I mean I said it, but I thought... I didn't expect Hoggle..." Sarah stumbled over her words, flustered by Jareth's unexpected use of her own words.

Jareth laughed and leaned over and kissed her lips. "Relax Precious, I was just as upset to be interrupted." He then turned to Hoggle. "Now this had better be good Higgle."

"Hoggle!" Sarah and Hoggle corrected him at the same time.

Jareth simply continue to glare at the dwarf, ignoring their correction of him getting the name wrong. Sarah shook her head. She knew he did it on purpose, but she would still continue to correct him every time. "Why are you here?" Sarah asked.

"His majesty's cousin asked that I bring him back to the castle." Hoggle answered. He looked at Sarah and avoided looking at the King.

"What does that fool want from me now?" Jareth spat.

"He said that Lady Heidi needs a healer. He injuries from her run were really bad." Hoggle explained.

"Jareth don't you have a healer?" Sarah asked.

Sighing, Jareth ran his fingers through his hair. "I am the healer."

"You?"

He nodded. "I have a kingdom of goblins. They hurt themselves all the time. I learned quickly to heal minor wounds. Over the years my skills at healing have become efficient enough that I could be called a healer. Most of the magic I use to heal comes from the Labyrinth." Jareth informed her. "I suppose you wish me to go an heal her?"

Sarah looked from him to Hoggle. "Are her injuries really that bad?"

"I honestly can't say. His cousin claims they are. He also asked that you come too Sarah."

"Me? What can I do?" Sarah was confused.

"Perhaps Alastair believes I will only heal her at your request and wishes you to be present to convince me." Jareth suggested.

"Would I need to be there to convince you?"

"No." Jareth shook his head. "If you wish me to do so, I will do it."

"Please go and heal her Jareth." Sarah told him.

Jareth nodded, kissed her cheek, and went inside to grab his shirt. When he returned it was once again on and buttoned. "I shall return as soon as I can. Hoggle, stay with Sarah until I return."

"Yes, majesty." Hoggle bowed his head and waited for him to leave. Jareth went down the steps and then turned into an owl and flew towards the castle.

Sarah watched him fly off and then looked to Hoggle. "Come on inside Hoggle. I'll get you some hot chocolate." Hoggle nodded and followed her inside, closing the door behind him.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

When Jareth arrived at the castle, he found the goblins passed out of stumbling around drunk. "Imbeciles." He muttered as he stepped over the sleeping pile of goblins around the throne room. "Alastair!" He called as he headed upstairs.

Alastair met him in the hallway with a smile. "Cousin, you got here faster than I expected. Is Lady Sarah with you?"

"Sarah remained at the house with her dwarf friend. I will heal Heidi and then you will take her home." Jareth said it more as an order than a request.

"Understood. She's resting in here." Alastair led Jareth to the room he had placed Heidi in and stood by the door when he went in.

Jareth walked into the room and went straight over to the woman lying on the couch. "It appears my cousin was rather rude, making you rest on the couch."

Heidi looked up when she heard his voice. "Jareth." She sat up the best she could. "No, Alastair has been wonderful to me. Far better than I deserve."

Jareth knelt by her side and held a crystal in his hand. "Alastair asked me to come and heal the rest of your wounds. I'm here to do that and then my cousin will take you home." He started moving the crystal over her body slowly, focusing his magic into healing the wounds.

"Did she ask you to do this?" Heidi asked.

"What?" Jareth stopped what he was doing.

"The human, the one you care for, did she ask you to come heal me?" Heidi asked again. When he didn't answer she continued. "Alastair told me what happened. He said that you were going to leave me to die. You're right it would have fitting that I die for trying to defeat the Labyrinth. It was my arrogant pride that lead me to it. I thought if I human child could do it, then surely I could. I was wrong." She turned her head. "What I don't understand is why she begged you and Alastair to save me. Doesn't she know I wanted to take the throne? Does she know I would have killed her to get what I wanted?"

Jareth pulled a chair over and sat by her. "Sarah is very aware of who you are. She knows about the arranged marriage and I'm certain that she is aware that you would harm her if given the chance."

"Then why?"

Jareth sat back in the chair. "Sarah is a very special woman. She doesn't believe anyone should die, no matter what they may or may not have done."

"That's foolish. To get anywhere you have to be willing to die or kill for what you want." Heidi scoffed.

"Sarah doesn't believe so." He sighed. "I once thought that being intimidating and kicking or bogging them was the only way to keep them under control. But Sarah," He stopped and chuckled, a wide grin on his face. "my precious Sarah can get them to obey her faster than I can and all she has to do is be kind to them. She says please, thanks them, hugs them. Sarah treats them with the love and care you would give your own child, and they love her for it."

"Kind to goblins?"

"She's kind to everyone and everything. Would you like to know how she beat the Labyrinth? She befriended the very creatures that were supposed to stop her. She turned my subjects against me. She outwitted me with love and kindness." Jareth leaned forward and held out the crystal again. "Now sit still and let me do what must be done."

Jareth healed her wounds completely. Not a single cut, bruise, or ache was left. When he was done he told her to rest on the bed for a few hours before taking the trip home. He left and Alastair returned to the chair by the fire, staying nearby in case she needed him. As she thought about what Jareth had told her, she smirked slightly. "Who would have thought it. The Goblin King, outwitted by love and kindness."

Chapter Text

When Jareth returned to his winter home, it was late. He found Hoggle sitting by the fire, but Sarah was no where in sight. "Where's Sarah?" He demanded.

Hoggle didn't hear the King return, so he jumped at the sound of his voice. "Your Majesty." He jumped up and rushed over. "Sarah was tired and went to bed."

"Very good. I had hoped to be back sooner, but I'm glad she didn't force herself to stay up to wait for me." He walked over to the fireplace and stared at the flames. "Hoggle, you may stay here tonight, and thank you for staying with Sarah."

"Thank you Majesty, and it won't no trouble at all. I enjoyed spending the evening with Sarah." Hoggle told him.

Jareth nodded. "I believe I shall retire myself." He left the room and headed towards his. He stopped before he opened the door. Turning, he walked across the hall and slowly opened Sarah's door. Closing it gently, he walked over to where she was sleeping. He smiled seeing how peaceful she looked. She was dressed in a lavender nightgown, similar to ones he had dreampt of seeing her in. Slowly he reached out and brushed her hair from her face.

After he watched her for another minute, Jareth pulled the covers over her and turned to leave. Before he could take one step, Sarah reached out and grabbed his hand. He turned back and found her looking right at him. "Were you awake the whole time?"

"No, I felt you pull the covers over me." Sarah replied as she sat up.

He sat on the edge of the bed. "Apologies Precious, I didn't mean to wake you."

"Did you just get back?" Sarah asked as she pulled his hand on to her lap and caressed it through the glove with both hands.

"Yes, I returned a little while ago. I hadn't meant to leave you for so long."

"Is she all healed?" Sarah inquired. Jareth simply nodded. "Good." She smiled at him and pulled his arm until he was face to face with her. "I don't want to spend any more of my vacation with out you."

Smiling, Jareth wrapped his arms around her. "And I don't intend to leave you alone for a minute." He brushed his lips against her softly. "And I'll bog anyone that tries to interrupt us again." He pressed his lips against hers in a tender kiss. Sarah responded by wrapping her arms around his neck and pulling him closer. When he pulled away, he leaned his head against hers. "Its late. You should get some rest."

As if on cue, Sarah covered her mouth with her hand to try and hide her yawn. She chuckled. "I guess you're right."

"Of course I am Precious." Jareth grinned. "Now you lay back and go to sleep." He stood and watched her lay back. As he went to pull the covers over her, she stopped him. She pulled them further back and she scooted over, so there was room for him to lay beside her. "Stay with me."

He sighed. "Sarah, I don't think..."

"Didn't you just say you weren't going to leave me alone for a minute?"

Shaking his head, Jareth couldn't help but smile at the innocent look she was giving him. "Alright, alright, but don't get mad if my hands start wandering." He tossed a crystal up and with a pop, he worked his magic to change into his sleeping attire. Jareth climbed into bed in just a pair of silky sleep pants. He climbed in beside her and made himself comfortable.

Sarah snuggled up beside him, one arm draped over his chest and her head resting on his shoulder. "Goodnight Jareth." She whispered as she closed her eyes.

He placed a soft kiss on her forehead before replying. "Goodnight Sarah." He laid there watching her for a bit, his hand rubbing soothing circles on her back. She was asleep with in minutes. When he noticed the change in her breathing, he knew she was asleep. Closing his own eyes he whispered. "Sweet dreams my Queen."

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

Next morning Jareth woke to find he was alone in Sarah's bed. He sat up and looked around. Her robe, which he had noticed on the chair the night before, was gone. Her bathroom door was open and as he expected the room was empty. As he walked out into the hall he picked up on the smell of food cooking in the kitchen. "Sarah!" He called as he followed the delicious smells.

"In here!" Her answer came from the kitchen.

Jareth entered the kitchen to find Sarah busy at the stove, Hoggle sitting at the table along with Sarah's five goblins. "Morning Kingy!" Flower said excitedly.

"Sarah..." He walked up behind her and wrapped his arms around her. "Precious, what are you doing?"

"Making breakfast." She replied as she flipped a pancake.

"Precious, you could have woke me if you were hungry. I would have..." He stopped as he caught a familiar scent. "Are those peach pancakes?"

Chuckling, Sarah pulled away from his arms and walked over to the counter, where a large stack of pancakes was forming. "Yes, and I didn't wake you because I wanted to do this. You've been spoiling me since we left my grandmothers. I figured making breakfast was the least I could do."

Jareth leaned against the wall and watched Sarah continue to make the food. She kept adding to the pile of pancakes, fried eggs, bacon was sizzling on on the fire, and there were large pitchers of juice on the table. "Where did you get all of this?" He asked.

"We helps Kingy." Patch said proudly.

"Lady gaves us a list and we gets it for her." Cam smiled.

"We even got fresh peaches from the trees." Dusty grinned.

"I hope that's ok Jareth. They were worried you'd be mad, but I told them it was so I could make something for you." Sarah stated quickly before he could respond to the little goblins.

He shook his head, chuckling. "If our lady said it was alright, then it is. Thank you all for assisting my Sarah with her delightful surprise."

"We's happy to helps Lady!" Patch exclaimed as he almost fell off his chair.

"Take it easy." Sarah told him as she helped him sit back at the table. "The food will be done in a moment." She smiled at her little crew of helpers then turned back to Jareth. "Have a seat. I'll fix the plates."

Jareth did as she asked and sat on the tall bar stool like chair that had suddenly appeared at the counter in the small kitchen. He turned so he could watch Sarah and glanced at the small, almost kid sized table that Sarah had her friends sitting at. "And just what did you do to help Hoghead?"

"I... well I..."

"He juiced all the fruit." Sarah answered for him. "And its Hoggle, and you know that's his name." Sarah scolded as she filled a tiny plate with food. "I know you only pretend to forget his name." She placed the first plate in front of Cam, and grabbed the next empty one. One by one she filled them and placed them in front of the goblins. Once there were all eating happily with full glasses of juice in front of them, Sarah grabbed a large plate and filled it with a large stack of the peach pancakes, a large helping a eggs, 4 slices of bacon and two slices of buttered toast with peach preserves on them. "Here you go your Majesty."

Jareth looked at the plate she had placed before him, the food was neat, cooked just how he liked it and she even placed a bottle of his favorite syrup in front of him. "How..."

"How did I know what you like and that you like your eggs sunny side up?" Sarah smirked at his dumbfounded look. "You're not the only one that Cam can gather information for."

He looked back at his spy, who was stuffing a large piece of pancake in his mouth. Seeing the King look at him, Cam grinned and gave him a thumbs up. "You never cease to amaze me Precious." He turned back to his plate and picked up his fork. He knew Sarah was waiting for him to try the food. She had been standing beside him since she placed the plate in front of him. He poured a bit of the syrup on the pancakes and cut them into small bites. As he lifted the first bite to his mouth, he could smell the peaches and his mouth watered. He closed his eyes the moment the delicious flavor filled his mouth. He chewed slowly, enjoying the flavor of the peaches blended with the sweetness of the syrup. Once he swallowed, he place the fork down, stood, turned to Sarah, and cupped her face in his hands. "Oh Precious, if I wasn't already mad about you, you would have stolen my heart with this glorious meal. I can conjure anything I want, which I usually do since goblins are not decent cooks. But this.... This is the best thing I've ever tasted. How did you do it?"

Sarah was grinning from ear to ear. She was pleased he enjoy the food. "Well my Nanny always told me the best meal you can make is one you make just for someone you you care about."

He kissed her forehead. "She was absolutely correct." He rubbed his nose against hers. "You are free to cook for me whenever you like. You'll never hear me complain about how I could simply conjure food for us ever again."

"You better remember that." She smirked. "Not all my cooking comes out the way I intend it to."

"A risk I'm willing to take." He kissed the tip of her nose and then sat back down and started devouring his food.

Sarah fixed her own plate and took a seat beside him. They ate quietly and Sarah couldn't believe Jareth had 3 huge plates of food. The goblins ate a lot if she let them, but their King ate like a starving man. When the meal was finished, Jareth and Sarah made themselves comfortable in the other room, while the goblins cleaned up the dishes. Hoggle stayed to make sure it was done correctly. Sarah assured Jareth the goblins could clean just fine, but he wouldn't hear it until Hoggle agreed to stay and watch over them.

When they finished cleaning, they found Jareth and Sarah curled up on the couch, arms wrapped around one another, their noses touching as they gazed into each others eyes. Hoggle tried to stop them, but they ran into the room.

"Kingy!"

"Lady!"

"We's all done!"

"Kitchen clean!"

Hearing the excited voices, Sarah and Jareth separated and turned to greet them. "Good job gang." Sarah smiled. The goblins rushed over to her, Cam climbed up on her lap, Dusty and Patch hugged her legs and Grunt stood between the two hugging her.

Flower meanwhile climbed onto Jareth's lap and smiled up at him. "What are you idiots doing?"

"Relax Jareth." Sarah placed her hand on his knee. "They always come to me like this after they clean. Usually after we play a game or I read them a story before bed."

"I'm not sure I wish to be part of this ritual." He complained.

"Game Lady?" Cam asked.

"I don't see an issue with that." She stated

"Sarah." Jareth almost whined.

"No arguments, Goblin King. They helped me make your breakfast, so you get to help me reward them. Now I was thinking a nice game of hide and seek would be fun."

"Hide in seek! Hide in seek!" The goblins chanted together.

Jareth groaned and placed his and over his face. This was not how he wanted to spend his day. "I suppose Higgle will be joining us as well?"

"Its Hoggle," Sarah corrected again. She was determined to make him stop calling poor Hoggle by the wrong name, though she wondered if he did it just to see if she would correct him. "And its up to him if he wants to join us."

"That's alright Sarah." Hoggle said shyly. "I needs to be getting back. I gots work to do."

"Oh one day of not working won't hurt anything, right Jareth?" Sarah said as she looked to the King.

Sighing he uncovered his face. "If you wish to join in the fun," the word fun came through gritted teeth. "You may do so."

Hoggle studied the King carefully. He knew Jareth was humoring Sarah. He wanted all of them to leave, that was clear. "Its alright Sarah. I'm not much for hide and seek. I'll just goes back to the castle."

Jareth smiled. At least one of his subject still knew their place. "Are you sure?" Sarah argued.

"Yea. I'll see you later Sarah." Hoggle said as he headed for the door.

"Alright, if you're sure." Sarah said as she stood. Placing Cam on the couch, she walked Hoggle to the door. Once she was out of site, Jareth pushed Flower off his lap and stood.

Once Hoggle was gone, Sarah returned to find the goblins looking at her expectantly. "So your highness, are you going to play with us or are you afraid I'll beat you again?"

"Is that a challenge Sarah?" He asked as he came to stand in front of her.

"And if it is?" She looked up at him, a slight smirk on her face.

"Challenge accepted."

~*~*~*~///...///~*~*~*~

Back at the castle, Heidi was preparing to leave. Jareth had made it quite clear that she was only allowed to stay for the one night. Alastair was suppose to take her home at dawn, but he had allowed her to bathe and have something to eat first. She was surprised to find her weapons and her bag, filled with all the items she had brought with her for her run of the Labyrinth, sitting by the bed when she exited the bath. She quickly dressed in the yellow dress that was laying on the bed. She was certain Alastair had left it for her. Grabbing her bag, she grabbed her things and found Alastair waiting in the grand hall. "I'm ready when you are." She told him.

"In 3 days this room will be filled with every member of the court. Ladies and Nobles from all the Kingdoms, all dressed up and smiles." Alastair looked around the room.

"And the High Queen will announce my engagement to Jareth." Heidi said calmly.

"Unless my cousin makes a formal announcement and introduces Lady Sarah to the Court." He replied. "Tell me Heidi, do you still plan on going after the throne?"

"I..." She hesitated. "I don't know. After my talk with Jareth, its clear how much he cares for her. Hell I owe her my life. I don't think I can..." She sighed and ran her hand through her hair. "I don't think I can oppose her, not now. I don't like the idea of loosing to a human, but I honestly don't think I can interfere. If he's happy, what more could any of us ask for?"

Alastair smiled. "I'm happy to hear you say that. Now we just have to talk Auntie into dropping the whole thing."

"I don't understand? If he makes the announcement and introduces her the High Queen has no reason to go after him or force the arranged marriage."

"You and I both know Auntie won't give up that easy." He stated as he walked with her to the main gate. "You know of Auntie's hatred for humans correct?"

"I know she hates humans, but I never knew why, well other than what we all know of the events of the past. How humans hunted us and that's why we stay hidden from them. Why we're considered fictional beings in the aboveground."

He nodded. "Yes that's why most of our kind are taught to hate and avoid humans. Auntie has a more personal reason for her hatred. Do you know about my Uncle's condition?"

"I've heard rumors and stories that he may be dying. There are lots of reasons it could be. Some even claim he's already dead." Heidi said.

"Oh no, Uncle Talonas is very much alive, for now." Alastair stared at the sky and sighed. "He is dying though, and its because of a human."

"What?" Heidi stopped in her tracks.

"As is common place with most married couples, they each had their own lovers. Uncle enjoyed the company of humans. He found their youth and some of the more interesting practices from the aboveground to be entertaining. One of these girls that was brought to him wasn't as willing as many of the others. Some say she was even sent to kill him by another Kingdom, though nothing has been proven and Auntie killed her before she could be questioned." Alastair explained.

"What did she do?"

"Iron. She used an aboveground device to launch an iron pellet into him. The healers can't remove it as it has anti-magic sigils on it and anytime they try to touch it, they themselves become ill." Alastair took her hand and led her into the maze to head for the exit. He knew the way by heart now, but Jareth had warned him about letting her get separated from him. The Labyrinth may not be thrilled that she was saved and may not let her out if she was alone.

"No wonder the High Queen hates humans." Heidi was shocked. She never expected to hear that the High King of the Court was dying and it was because of a human.

"Now you understand why it will be so hard to convince her to leave Lady Sarah alone?" He asked.

"But wait, if no Fae healer can touch the pellet, why not have a human remove it? It won't harm them." Heidi's eyes lit up hoping she had come up with a solution to save the King.

Alastair shook his head. "Auntie won't let any one, especially not a human, near Uncle. Only one that get to see him and his personal healers and my aunt. She said they're doing all they can to make him comfortable."

Heidi shook her head and continued following Alastair. She never even commented on the fact he was holding her hand. "I don't know what to say."

"Just say that you'll help Jaxel and I convince Auntie to leave Jareth alone. Let him and Sarah find happiness."

Heidi stopped and tugged on his hand until he stopped and looked at her. "You really care about Jareth don't you?"

"Of course. He's my cousin. He may have turned into a grumpy, selfish, recluse, locking himself away in his castle. But he's family and he was the only one that treated me like I was part of the family when we were kids. It didn't matter to Jareth that my mother was a human, well my birth mother that is. The mother that raised me always treated me as her own, but the rest of the family knew she wasn't. They knew that she couldn't conceive so father had used a breeder. Auntie didn't acknowledge me until I made a name for myself at court and fought in the war. Jaxel wasn't around much as Auntie was grooming him for his role as Crown Prince. Jareth was there though. He helped me master my magic, defended me from the other kids that wanted to use me as target practice. With out my cousin I don't know where I would be now. Jareth was my best friend. If Lady Sarah can bring him the happiness he so much deserves, then I will protect her with my life. Even from my aunt." Alastair let go of her hand and leaned against the wall.

"Alastair..." Heidi was at a loss for words. She never knew that he was birthed by a breeder. She knew he was close with Jareth when they were kids, but she didn't know how close they really were or how Jareth had protected his younger cousin. She couldn't even imagine what growing up was like for him. She wasn't part of the royal family, but her parents were still well known and respected among the court, but even she knew how badly a child from a breeder were treated. Once they were an adult and proved themselves they were fine, but growing up was the hard part.

She stepped towards him and took his hands in his. "I'll help you Alastair. What ever it takes we'll keep Lady Sarah safe from the High Queen. I have a question for you though."

"What is it?" He asked as he looked into her eyes.

"Will you be my escort to the New Year's Ball?"

Chapter Text

After dressing for their game of hide and seek, Sarah had Jareth conjure little hats, scarves, and shoes for the goblins. They headed out to the field where the snowmen still stood. After several rounds of rock/paper/scissors, it was decided that Cam would count while the others hid. As soon as the tiny goblin started counting, they all took off in different directions.

The goblins fond any hole they could to hide in or jumped in bushes. Jareth grabbed Sarah's hand and pulled her with him. "What are you..."

"Shh!" He pulled her to him as he ducked behind a large rock. "It won't take long for my little spy to find everyone."

"That's kinda the point. First one he finds is it next round." Sarah told him. "Its a little dumb hiding together. If he finds one, he finds us both."

"Then I'll just make sure we aren't found for a little bit." He tossed a crystal and suddenly there were large bushes around the rock hiding them.

"Jareth, we're suppose to be found, otherwise there's no point in playing." She chuckled as he backed her against the rock.

"Maybe I want to play a different game." He smirked.

"What about my challenge?"

"Oh I intend to beat your challenge, but I want to make it a little more interesting." He wrapped his arms around her and slowly kissed down her neck.

"And just how do you plan on making it more interesting?" Sarah asked as she leaned her neck to the side, giving him better access.

"Well if I can find you when its my turn, then you owe me a favor. If you find me, I owe you one." Jareth whispered in her ear before nipping it gently.

"You mean you'd owe me a second favor." Sarah stated as her hands played with his hair.

"Pardon?"

"I never collected on the favor you owe me from our last little game. Remember you refused to answer a question." She took his hand in hers. "All because you didn't want me to know how sensitive your hands are."

"Ah yes, I had forgotten that. Well then I believe I need to make things right later. I shall repay that favor today. Now do you accept my terms for our little game now?" He was grinning as he rubbed his nose against hers. He had a plan in mind for the favor he wanted from her and he knew exactly what he would be doing to repay the favor he owed her.

"What if we find each other? Do we each owe a favor?" Sarah inquired.

"No, if you have found me the same number of times that I find you, then we are even and no favors are owed." Jareth replied.

"Alright Goblin King. I'll accept your terms." She shook his hand and tried to push him away, knowing the only way to beat him was to get away and let Cam find her first so that she could be it next round.

"Oh no, no, no Precious. We're past shaking on our little agreements. I believe we need to seal it with a kiss." He put both hands against the rock by her head, trapping her between him and it.

Sarah shook her head. "You're hopeless."

"When it comes to you, yes I am." He leaned closer.

Sarah smiled and leaned forward, meeting his lips with hers. She should have known Jareth wouldn't settle for a simple touching of their lips. He wasted no time deepening the kiss and pressing his tongue against her lips, seeking entrance. Sarah opened her mouth to him and a soft moan escaped her throat as his tongue explored her mouth. When he pulled back, they were both out of breath and breathing heavily. "What happens if neither of us finds the other?"

"Only way that is going to happen is if we don't play, my dear." Jareth could see the lust in her eyes. He knew she was debating forgetting the game and just continuing what they were just doing, but his plan was important. So he pulled away from her and turned to leave the area. "You don't want to disappoint the goblins do you?" He dashed away to find a new place to hide.

Sarah stood there for a moment catching her breath. He was up to something, and she knew it. He didn't want to play to begin with and now that he had her willing to sneak off to be alone, he leaves commenting about disappointing the little ones. Taking a deep breath, she peeked out and saw Cam chasing Grunt. She shook her head. Poor Grunt never understood the concept of hiding. He always thought they were playing tag.

It wasn't long after that, that Cam caught Grunt and found all the others that were hiding. The next round Sarah was surprised to find that Jareth had been the first to be found by Grunt, which meant it was his turn to count. Jareth covered his eyes and started counting. Sarah and the goblins quickly took off to find hiding places. Sarah was determined to beat him at his game. She ran, looking around for the perfect place to hide. She was certain Jareth would know these woods as well as he knew the Labyrinth. Once she found what she hoped was a good place, she climbed in and waited.

When Jareth was done counting, he looked around smiling. This was going to be too easy. Sarah had forgotten about the snow. It made tracking her extremely simple. He walked casually through the trees, following her tracks. He spotted each of the goblins as he went, but ignored them. They weren't important. Finding Sarah was all he cared about. As he got closer, he smiled. He could tell where she stopped, when she ran, and when she walked based on the tracks and the distance of her strides. Smirking he ran his hand along the trunk of a tree as he stopped. He looked around walked slowly around a rather large fallen tree.

Sarah heard the footsteps getting closer, she tried to slow her breathing and stayed as still as she could, not wanting to make a sound. When she heard him stop, she held her breath. She could see his boot through a tiny hole in the large log that she was hiding in. He stood there, not moving for a long time. When Sarah couldn't hold her breathe any longer, she slowly exhaled, trying to be as quiet as she could. Her heart was beating so loud she worried he might hear it. Jareth stepped just out of Sarah's view, his steps getting further away. Just as Sarah thought the coast was clear, the log she was in began to roll.

Jareth was trying hard not to laugh as he rolled the log. He knew she was hiding inside and was sure to panic. The moment she cried out, he gave it one final push and then moved one end. Kneeling he peered inside, a big smile on his face. "Is that you Precious?" He shook his head. "Tsk, tsk, you really should find a safer place to hide. What would have happened if this tree had continued rolling down the hill with you in it?"

"It wasn't rolling until you pushed it!" She cried as she tried to climb out, but she was having trouble as she was slightly dizzy from the rolling.

Jareth held his hand out to her and helped her out of the log. Standing, he pulled Sarah to her feet and held her in his arms. "Forgive me Sarah." He said softly as he picked bits of bark from her hair. "You're not hurt are you Precious?"

She shook her head. "I'm fine, just a little dizzy."

"Good." He caressed her cheek with the back of his hand. "I would feel horrible if you had been hurt." He whispered as he rubbed his nose against hers. "But I do believe this means you owe me a favor."

"The game isn't over. I still have a chance to find you." Sarah replied. "Was I the first you found?"

Shrugging, Jareth ran his thumb across her bottom lip. "I know where the goblins are, but I didn't let them know that. So while I figured out their hiding places, you were the first I caught." With a devilish smirk on his face, Jareth asked. "So, what shall I do with my lovely little captive?"

Sarah giggled as he wrapped both arms around her waist, pulling her flush against him. "You're supposed to find everyone as fast as you can and then we move on to the next round. So there isn't anything you're supposed to do with me."

"Oh I can think of a few things I certainly want to do with you." Before Sarah could protest, he covered her lips with his in a tender kiss.

Sarah kissed back for a moment, then pulled away. "You're not getting out of our game that easy. You found me, so now its my turn. But first you have to find the goblins."

Sighing, Jareth released her and ran to find all the goblins. After they were all located and back by the snowmen, Sarah turned to face Jareth. "Alright Goblin King, hide the best you can, but I will find you. No using magic to hide like you did earlier either."

"Very well Sarah." He bowed to her and then took her hand in his. "I wish you luck on finding me, and I look forward to collecting my favor." He kissed her hand and then released it.

"Don't get a head of yourself. If I find you then we're even and no favors are owed." Sarah stated as she walked over to the snowman she built. She covered her eyes and started counting.

Jareth took off running, making sure to step in areas of the snow that were already heavily traveled. He wasn't going to make it easy on her. In fact he planned on making it so she couldn't find him at all. Glancing behind him, he saw the goblins were already hidden. He quickly ducked behind the large rock he had hidden behind with Sarah. The bushes were still in place from earlier, so technically it wasn't cheating, as Sarah knew about it. He quickly changed into and owl, peered out from the bush, and flew to a nearby tree. He knew of a large oak, that had a hollowed out section near the top. It was large enough for him to sit in it, in his normal form, and he often sat there with a book. It was also a wonderful spot to watch the sunset. He could see himself sitting there, with Sarah in his arms, watching the sunset one day in the near future. For now though it was the perfect hiding place.

When he landed in the tree, he turned back and made himself comfortable as he waited for the game to continue. From here he could see most of the area they were playing their game in. He could see three of the five goblins. A moment later he spotted Sarah running around looking. She ran straight to the large rock. He chuckled, of course that would be the first place she looked. He just hoped she didn't look too closely and see his little claw prints.

Sarah quickly searched in the bushes by the rock and then she ran to the log that she had hidden in. Her thinking was that he might think she wouldn't expect him to hide in the same place that she had. He wasn't there though. She looked in every bush, behind every rock, and in every hollowed log she could find, but no sign of the Goblin King. After almost an hour of looking, the goblins peeped out. They had seen her run by several times, yet she never found them. Cam finally gave up hiding and when she ran by, he jumped on her shoulder. "Lady."

She jumped when he landed on her shoulder, nearly tripping over a rock. "Cam, oh my gosh, you scared me. You're supposed to be hiding."

"Lady not looks for us. Lady looks for Kingy." Cam stated as he hugged her neck to prevent himself from falling as she ran. "Since Lady no finds us, I finds Lady and helps find Kingy."

Stopping, Sarah looked at the little goblin. "You'll help me find him?"

"All gobbies help." He grinned.

Sarah quickly found the other four, and together they all looked for the King. Meanwhile Jareth was growing bored. If he had known he would be hiding out like that he would have brought a book or two. Sighing, he summoned a crystal and tossed it up. Slowly it floated down to where Sarah and the goblins were. Cam, who was still on her shoulder, spotted it. "Lady looks!" He pointed to the bubble floating towards them.

Sarah held her hand out to it and it landed softly on her hand and stayed. "Jareth?"

"Give up Precious?" His voice came from the bubble.

"I said no magic." Sarah scolded.

"I'm only using magic to speak to you Sarah. I've seen you run by several times. I was just wondering it you wanted to give up?" Jareth's voice asked from the bubble.

"Never. I will find you." Sarah replied.

"Very well, though if you take too long I shall have to call this game over. I'm sure you'll be wanting lunch won't you?" She could almost hear the smirk.

"Fine. If I haven't found you by lunch, I'll owe you a favor." She groaned.

"Very well Precious. And just to make it fair..." The bubble popped and in her hand now sat a tiny clock similar to the one from her run of the Labyrinth. "You have until the clock strikes 13." She heard his voice echo.

Sighing she placed it in her pocket. "Alright Goblin Five, let's go find the King!"

"Find Kingy!" they cried as they set off once more to search.

Jareth watched as they ran around looking everywhere, except up. He smiled as Sarah stood right under him and glanced at the clock. She groaned, placed it in her pocket and continued to search. Jareth was almost tempted to send another bubble to tease her, but he knew she'd make him pay for it later, so he refrained from it. If the favor he needed from her wasn't so important he would have dangled his feet out of the tree and hummed to see if she would notice him, but he couldn't afford to loose this chance. No he would wait until her time was up. This time she wasn't going to beat him.

Finally Sarah pulled the clock from her pocket when it started to chime. At the 13th chime, the clock vanished from her hand and she groaned. "Fine! You win Jareth! Now where the hell are you?!" She yelled at the top of her lungs.

Chuckling, Jareth climbed out of the tree and sat on the branch. He gathered some snow from the tree and made a ball. Tossing it at Sarah, he laughed when she jumped. "Up here dearest!" He called down to her.

Looking up, Sarah's mouth dropped open. She never thought to look up in the trees. "You were up there the whole time?"

Jareth jumped down from the branch and walked over to her. "I told you I watched you go by me several times. You always forget my owl-like nature."

Sarah wanted nothing more than to wipe the smirk off his face. "Go ahead and enjoy it. It won't happen again."

He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her close. "You know, you are adorable when you're pouting."

"I'm not pouting!" She tried to pull away, but he held tight.

"No?" He nuzzled her neck. "Well what ever it is that you're doing it is incredibly adorable." He kissed her neck and she stopped fighting him. "Don't worry Sarah, you're going to thoroughly enjoy the rest of your day."

Sarah felt her knees growing weak as he kissed her neck and let his hands roam her body. She would have forgotten they weren't alone if Dusty hadn't tugged on her pant leg. "Lady?"

She looked down at the goblins, all looking up at her with large grins. "What is it?" Jareth sighed and loosened his grip on her and turned his head to look at them as well.

"We finds Kingy, so now is time for lunch?" Patch asked.

Chuckling, Sarah nodded. "Alright let's head back and we'll get something to eat."

"Very well." Jareth said as he summoned a crystal. Before Sarah could react, he tossed it up and suddenly they were all back at the house. He threw another crystal in the fire place and created a fire. The goblins hurried over to sit by it and warm up. "After you eat, I want you all to return to the castle. There is lots of work to be done."

"Yes Kingy!" The replied with giant grins.

Jareth used his magic to get them lunch and sat it on the floor by them. When he turned to ask Sarah what she wanted, he found her slowly stripping the extra layers off. He stopped and watched her, a goofy grin on his face. He walked over and wrapped his arms around her from behind. "And what does my champion want for lunch?" He whispered in her ear. "Or does she wish to simply skip to dessert?"

She leaned back against him as he rubbed his hands along her sides and stomach, his mouth leaving a trail of warm kisses down her neck. "Jareth..." She had been cold from being outside for so long, but even though she had shed her layers of clothes, she was suddenly beginning to feel really warm.

"Shall I start repaying that favor I owe you?" His voice was low and husky and it sent shivers down her spine.

"Just what did you have in mind?"

"Something that I know you'll enjoy tremendously." He licked her ear. "You have to say your right words though Precious."

"I wish..." She stopped. Since she had no clue what he had planned, she wasn't exactly sure what to wish for.

"You have to say it Sarah." His hand came up to caress her breast.

"I wish the Goblin King..." She paused and a quiet moan escaped her lips as he massaged both her breasts in his hands and continued kissing her neck. "I wish the Goblin King would repay the favor he owes me."

"Granted." He let her go and spun her around to face him. In one fluid motion, he swept her off her feet and carried her to the fire place. He stopped long enough to talk to the goblins. "Eat and then return to the castle. Do not return here or allow anyone else from the castle to come here unless I call for you."

"Yes Kingy."

"Lady sick?" Flower asked when she noticed the King was carrying her.

"No, our Lady is going to be pampered for the rest of the day. I'm not letting her lift a finger for anything. Now eat your lunch and get to work." He ordered before he carried Sarah down the hall. He carried her to his room and straight into the bathroom. Setting her down for a moment he went to the bathtub.

"Jareth what are you doing?"

"Preparing a bath for you." He replied as he filled the tub and poured various oils in. When the tub was filled with water and a large layer of bubbles on top, Jareth went to the door. "I shall wait out here until you undress and get in. Call when you are in the water."

"I can bathe alone. What are you going to do? Wash my hair for me?"

"Precisely." He grinned and walked out.

Shaking her head, Sarah stripped and climbed into the tub. The water was hot, but not so hot that it burned. It was just the way she liked it, warm enough that it gave her skin a pleasant tingle. As she relaxed, she took a deep breath and was surprised to smell Lavender and vanilla. Since it was Jareth who fixed the bath, she had expected it to smell like peaches. Shaking her head, she enjoyed the water for a moment and then she made sure she was covered by the bubbles before calling for Jareth.

When he returned to her side, he was dressed in just a loose fitting pair of sweat pants. Sarah's eyes roamed over his lean figure and she found herself want to touch the bare skin that was visible to her eyes. "Jareth is there a reason you're wearing so little?"

Chuckling, he sat on the edge of the tub. "Well I figured this was best since I'll be washing your hair and some of your body. Long sleeves and gloves would just get soaked." He grabbed a small bowl that was by the tub and dipped it in the water. "Lean your head back Sarah and close your eyes." She nodded and did as he asked. Slowly he poured the water on her head repeatedly until her hair was completely wet. Placing the bowl down, he grabbed a small bottle and poured its contents into his hand. Gently he rubbed the shampoo into her hair and massaged her scalp.

Sarah leaned her head towards him, eyes still closed, and a smile tugged at the corner of her mouth as she enjoyed the feel of his fingers. She had no idea letting someone else wash her hair could be so relaxing or feel so good. All too soon he was done, and he poured water over her head to rinse the shampoo out. Once he was done, he wiped her forehead and eyes, with a dry cloth to make sure no soap got in her eyes. Sarah slowly opened her eyes and gave him a soft smile. "That felt really nice. Thank you."

"I'm not done yet, Precious." Jareth grinned. He grabbed a cloth and dipped it in the water and rung out most of the water. Grabbing a second bottle he poured a bit of the contents on the rag. "Sit forward a bit." Sarah covered her chest with her arms and sat forward. Jareth took the rag and washed her back and neck, massaging as he ran the rag along her skin. "Sit back and let me have one of your arms." She followed his instructions and he slowly washed her shoulder, arm, and hand. He made sure to clean every inch of her skin and then asked her to let him have her other one. Sarah moved slowly, so as not to loose the cover of the bubbles, and held out her other arm for him. He gave that arm the same treatment as the first and then slowly leaned closer and ran the rag along her neck. He washed her neck, around her ears, and then slowly ran his rag covered hand lower to wash her chest and the top of her breasts that were just above the water.

Sarah was watching him intently as he washed her. He seemed so focused on his task, she almost forgot the only thing keeping him from a full view of her naked body was a layer of bubbles that was slowly shrinking. She became very aware of that fact when his hand ran along her chest. "Jareth."

He looked into her eyes when she called his name and she nearly lost herself in the passion she saw in them. It wasn't just lust, though there was a lot of that there. She could see the raw emotions he was feeling from being so intimate with her like this. He smiled and moved down the tub a bit. "Lift your leg as high as you're comfortable doing."

Nodding, Sarah lifted one leg. "Is that good?"

"Perfect." He responded softly as he washed her offered leg and foot. He took the same time and care as he did with her arms. When he was done he motioned for her to switch legs, which she did with out hesitation. As he washed her, Sarah found herself almost wanting to pull him into the tub with her. She never knew washing could be so sensual and sexy, but then she'd never been washed by Jareth before. She was starting to think he could make anything sexy.

When he finished with her second leg, he sat the rag on the edge of the tub and stood. "I'll leave and let you wash the areas I didn't and rinse off. There's a robe and towels there for you." He pointed to the sink and when she looked she saw a dark green robe and two deep purple towels. "Wrap your hair in a towel and put on the robe when you're done. I'll be waiting for you in the other room." He bowed to her like a servant would to his mistress and left the room, closing the door behind him.

Taking a deep breath, Sarah grabbed the rag and quickly finished cleaning herself. She wasn't sure if it was the water or how Jareth washed her, but she was feeling extremely hot at the moment. She suspected it was mostly his doing. Once she rinsed off and drained the tub, Sarah quickly dried off, wrapped her hair in a towel, and put on the robe. She looked for her clothes, intending to at least put her underwear back on, but they were no where to be found. "Now when did he take my clothes?" She asked out loud. Sighing, she tied the belt tight around her waist and exited the bathroom.

When she entered the bedroom, she found Jareth standing by a table that was covered by a large towel and had two pillows on it. She gave him a curious look and he smiled. "We'll get to that in a moment. First come have a seat over here." He motioned for her to follow him to the couch. She followed him and went to sit beside him. "No, I want you to sit here." He motioned to the floor between his legs. When she raised her eyebrow in shock and started to argue, he held up his hand and chuckled. "Its not what you're thinking. Though if you wish to try that later, I won't protest." He smirked as she glared at him. "Right now though I am the one doing the pampering. So come sit with your back to me." He stated calmly. When she hesitated he added, "Trust me Precious."

Slowly she sat between his legs with her back against the couch. She was suddenly feeling very nervous being so close to him with so little on. She trusted he wouldn't do anything she didn't want, but she feared that was the issue. What she wanted wasn't exactly what they should be doing. She relaxed a bit when she felt him unwrap the towel from around her head. He started drying her hair with it and massaging her head. She smiled feeling his hands on her head once more. She could definitely get used to his hands in her hair, gently kneading her scalp. Soon the towel was gone and he had a brush in his hand and was running it through her hair, careful not to pull too hard when he came across a tangle. Sarah was so relaxed, she was almost falling asleep. She used to love the rare occasions that her mother had brushed and played with her hair. She had forgotten how nice it felt.

When Jareth was done, Sarah's hair was dry, tangle free, and braided. He rubbed her shoulders gently and leaned down to whisper in her ear. "Now Precious, I want you to stand and go over to the table. I'll turn my back while you get comfortable. I want you to remove your robe, lay on the table facing down, and use the towel to cover your bottom. Let me know when you're done."

"What are you going to do?" She asked as she turned her head to look at him.

"Just do as I ask and you'll see."

Sarah stood and walked over to the table. Glancing behind her, she saw Jareth was now standing with his back to her. Quickly she removed her robe and climbed on the table. She adjusted the pillows, covered her backside with the towel and got as comfortable as she could. "Alright Jareth."

Hearing her, Jareth turned and hurried to the table. Smiling, he poured a little oil into his hands and rubbed them together. Slowly he ran his hands up and down her back, gradually adding pressure. His fingers rubbed, kneaded, and caressed every inch of her back and shoulders. It didn't take long for Sarah to start moaning in pleasure. It pleased him greatly that she was enjoying herself. He took her left arm and massaged it inch by inch all the way down to her hand. He twisted and rotated her wrist, working all the joints and muscles slowly. He repeated this on her right arm, making sure to give every inch of her equal treatment. Finishing with her arms, he returned to her back and shoulders. "Are you enjoying this Sarah?" He asked as he leaned down by her ear.

"Oh, yes!" She exclaimed as he worked the muscles in her shoulders. "I knew you gave a good massage, but this.... Mmmm this is heaven."

Laughing lightly, he worked his way down her back. The more she moaned the lower his hands went. Slowly he kneaded and rubbed her lower back. Her sounds of pleasure encouraging him, Jareth slowly ran his hands under the towel and gently caressed her ass. He made sure to keep her covered as his hands explored her bare skin. Hearing no protests from her, he continued lower until his hands could grip the entirety of her cheeks. He wanted to yank the towel away and marvel at the beauty of her completely naked body, but he kept control of himself. He wouldn't expose anything that she wasn't willing to let him see herself. Pulling back, he readjusted the towel, poured a bit more oil into his hands and moved down the table to rub her legs. Just as he had with her arms, Jareth worked his way up slowly, caressing, massaging and working every muscle he touched. He stopped at the edge of the towel, which sat just a bit lower than mid thigh.

His fingers teased around the bottom of the towel, aching to go further, but fearing she may stop him. When she spoke he froze. Had he heard her correctly? Before he could ask, she said it again. "Higher. Please don't stop Jareth." He didn't hesitate or ask if she was sure. His hands rubbed under the towel, slowly working higher. His fingers ghosted over the delicate skin of her inner thighs and he was careful not to get to close to her center. He did his best to give the area the same treatment as the rest, but found himself pulling away much sooner as he was having difficulty controlling himself. Moving back up the table he ran a finger up her spine, his finger barely touching her skin as it moved slowly up her back.

As a shiver ran down her spine from his teasing touch, she turned her head to look at him. His eyes were dark and lust filled. "Sarah..." He name was almost a purr from his lips. He leaned over and kissed her shoulder, then licked up her neck to her ear. "Sarah I can take you to heaven, if that is what you truly want."

She sat up a bit, propping herself on her elbows, the pillow pulled against her chest to cover it. "Jareth..." Before she could finish her statement, he captured her lips with his and kissed her hungerly. Forgetting her state of undress, Sarah sat up further and wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him closer. Their tongues battled against one another for dominance and his hands ran up and down her back. Without breaking the kiss, Jareth lifted her into his arms and carried her to the bed.

He stopped as he stood by the side of the bed. He slowed their kiss and gently peppered her face with kisses as he tried to regain control. Taking a deep breath, he looked into her eyes and saw they were as lust filled as his. "Sarah, if you want me to stop, now is the time to say so. I'm not planing on making you mine today. I know you're not ready for that, and if we were to join in that way I know I would never let you leave, even if you wanted to. Right now all I want is to pleasure you. I want to lay you on this bed, see your beautiful body completely nude, touch, kiss, lick and explore every inch of you. I want to take you to heaven and back again, but only if you'll allow it."

Sarah blushed slightly at his completely honest and blunt statement. She gazed into his eyes, and though they were dark with want, she could also see how he cared for her. He wasn't asking to bed her. He didn't want to find his own release. He simply wanted to please her. While the idea of him seeing her completely naked and defenseless still frightened her a bit, she trusted him. All he had done since they entered his room, was for her. The bath, fixing her hair, the massage, and now he was waiting for her to give permission before he took her to a new level of pleasure. She kissed him softly and hugged him tight. "I trust you." She whispered in his ear. "Please continue."

Nodding, he placed her in the middle of the bed and then stood back. His eyes looked her over slowly, admiring every inch, every freckle, every scar, and every hair. She wasn't super thin, hairless, or blemish free, but to him she was perfect. Each tiny thing that most would call a flaw, only added to her looks. She was bare and exposed and she had granted him permission to see her like this. The red of her cheeks from her blushing only heightened her beauty. He was in awe at the sight before him. Feeling more and more nervous from his intense staring, Sarah turned her head from him. Jareth slowly climbed on the bed beside her and caressed her cheek. Turning her head so that she looked at him, he smiled. "You're even more radiant like this Sarah. I've never seen anyone or anything that can compare to you." Slowly he closed the distance between them and kissed her softly. Pulling back, he rubbed his nose against hers. "My beautiful Sarah."

He kissed her nose, her lips, and then along her jaw and down her neck. As his lips traveled lower, his hands cupped her breasts and caressed her softly. She arched her back when he pinched her nipples between his fingers. Her mind went blank as he touched and kissed her. All she could focus on was him. Everywhere his hands and lips touched tingled with pleasure. She felt warm, almost feverish, and there was no doubt this time that it was him making her feel this way. A sound somewhere between a purr and a growl came from her throat when he licked her nipple and took it into her mouth. Her eyes closed and she ran her fingers through his wild blonde locks as he sucked and rolled his tongue over the now hard little bud. His hand continue to caress and squeeze her other breast, occasionally pinching or flicking her nipple. Sarah's breathing became heavy and she tugged on his hair. When he pulled away she whimpered from the loss of contact, but soon his mouth was lavishing her other breast just as he had done for the first.

One hand played with the first breast, wet from his mouth's generous display of affection. His other hand rubbed down her stomach and inched closer and closer to her most sensitive area. Jareth rubbed her inner thigh and gently spread her legs a little. Sarah was so enthralled with what he was doing to her breast, she barely felt what his other hand was doing, that is until he slid one finger between her moist lips. Her eyes opened, her muscles tensed, and she called out his name. He sat up a bit and kissed her lips. "Shh. Its alright love. Relax." He watched her as his finger stroked her slowly, barely brushing over her clit. When he pressed against it firmly, her eyes closed again and he saw her bite her bottom lip. "Open your eyes Sarah." After a moment she did and the smiled he gave her would have melted her heart, if he hadn't already reduced her to a pile of putty in his hands. "I want to look into your eyes as I do this, so keep those shiny emeralds focused on me." Nodding slightly, she stared into his eyes. "That's my girl." He kissed her tenderly and then pulled back to watch her.

His finger slowly caressed her clit, rubbing it all over, up, down, side to side, and around in circles. He studied her face as he played with her, watching her reactions to see what felt best to her. Sarah did her best to keep her eyes open, but when he shifted his hand so his thumb was the digit stimulating her clit while his finger pressed inside of her, she found she couldn't keep her eyes open. She closed them and moaned. Seeing her eyes closed tight, he stopped moving. "Open your eyes Sarah." He said firmly. Taking a deep breath, she opened them and found him grinning at her. "You can close them soon. Just keep them open a little longer dearest." He started moving his hand again, his thumb rubbing her clit in a small circle and his finger going in and out of her slowly.

Sarah gripped the sheets with one hand and her other reached for Jareth. Her eyes locked with his, she couldn't contain her self anymore. She grabbed his head and pulled him down to her, crushing his lips against hers. She couldn't even begin to describe the feelings he was causing to wash through her. She just needed him as close as possible at that moment. When a second finger entered her, she broke their kiss and cried out. She felt like she was rapidly approaching a cliff and she wanted to jump over the edge. Jareth gradually increased the thrusting of his fingers and added a third. He could feel her inner walls squeezing against his fingers and knew she was close. Wanting to send her over the edge, he took her nipple into his mouth again and used his free hand to simulate the other breast as he kept thrusting into her and stroking her clit firmly with his thumb. It didn't take much longer for her to fall over the edge. He slowed his movements as her body clenched around his hand and her muscles spasmed. He covered her face with kisses as she rode out her orgasm. Carefully he removed his hand from between her legs and looked her over again. She seemed to almost glow with bliss and he couldn't have been happier. As she closed her eyes and tried to calm her breathing, Jareth brought his hand to his lips and licked her juices from it.

He had planned to stop there, but after tasting her, he knew he needed more. Before she was even fully recovered, he moved to lay between her legs and kissed up her thigh. She opened her eyes and looked down at him. "What are you doing?"

Smirking, he rubbed his hands up and down her legs. "I told you I wanted to take you to heaven and back again. Well I just took you there once, now its time to take you back again." Before she could respond, he licked her in long, slow motions. He greedily lapped up everything he could.

"Jareth!" She moaned his name when he licked her clit. He gently nibbled and suck on the sensitive bundle of nerves and groaned as she wrapped her legs around him. Sticking his tongue inside of her, he swirled it around and moved it in and out slowly. He knew it wouldn't take too much to send her over the edge again and went back to sucking on her clit as two fingers pumped in and out of her. With every moan from her throat, Jareth increased his speed, thrusting his fingers deep within and curling them to caress her inner walls.

Soon he felt her muscles tighten around him again and her body spasmed once more as she had her second orgasm. He slowed his movements and let her come down from her high. As her muscles relaxed and she loosened her grip on his head, he slowly licked her clean, being careful to avoid her overly sensitive clit. Sitting up, he wiped his mouth and moved to lay beside her. He was very thankful that he had changed into a loose fitting pair of pants. Not only did it give more comfort at that particular moment, but it also kept Sarah from seeing just how turned on he was. He wanted to be inside her right then, but he had promised he wasn't going to do that. Plus he knew what he told her was absolutely correct. The moment they joined like that he would never be able to let her go. She would remain with him, at the castle, forever. Even if she wanted to go home, he knew he would never allow it. He couldn't, not after claiming her as his. Even now the idea of sending her home after New Year's was killing him.

Sarah rolled over and wrapped her arms around him, a content smile on her face. "You weren't lying about taking me to heaven."

He hugged her tight and chuckled. "Did you doubt me?"

"No, but I never imagined it would be like that." She sighed, closed her eyes, and snuggled on his chest, her ear resting over his heart.

He kissed her forehead and rested his chin on top of her head. "Tired?"

"A little." She responded quietly.

He smiled and pulled the blanket over them. "Good. Get some rest Precious."

She nodded and soon drifted off to sleep. Jareth simply laid there holding her in his arms. He didn't even care about how turned on he was at the moment or his throbbing member. He was just ecstatic that she allowed him to be so intimate with her. Nothing couldn't ruin his mood at that moment, not the goblins, not his brother or cousin, not Heidi, not even his mother. No, Jareth the Goblin King was as happy as he could be and planned to stay this way as long as he could.

Chapter Text

Sarah woke several hours later to find herself still wrapped safely in Jareth's arms. The Goblin King had also fallen fast asleep and she smiled as she looked at him. It didn't take her long to realize that she was still naked, and she began to blush as she remembered what Jareth had done for her. She then remembered that everything he did was his way of returning the favor he owed her and she started worrying about the favor she now owed him. Would he be expecting her to do something similar for him? Beginning to feel nervous being so close to him with so little on, Sarah slowly pulled free of his embrace and grabbed the robe from the chair. Glancing over at Jareth, she watched him sleep for a moment before quietly going to her room to get some clothes.

A little while after Sarah left the room, Jareth woke up feeling a little chilly from the lack of body heat. He sat up and looked around when he realized Sarah was gone. Throwing the covers off, he quickly got out of bed. "Sarah!" He called. He checked the bathroom but found it empty. Hurrying to the hall he called for her again. When he saw her bedroom door was closed he knocked on it. "Precious are you in there?"

"I'll be out in just a minute." Sarah's reply came from the other side of the door. Jareth sighed and paced in front of her door. When it finally opened, Jareth spun around to look at her. Seeing his worried look, Sarah tilted her head at him and gave him a soft smile. "Is everything alright?"

Nodding, Jareth took her in his arms. "I was just worried when I woke and found you gone."

Sarah hugged him. "Sorry. I was hoping to be back before you woke. I just wanted to put some clothes on. I'm not used to being completely naked other than in the bath. It felt a little... uncomfortable I guess would be the word for it."

Jareth kissed her forehead. "Was it uncomfortable because of me?"

"A little, I guess, but only because I'm still unsure about being so exposed. This is all still so new to me. I'm not really sure how to respond at times." Sarah explained.

"Do you regret what happened? I never meant to push anything on you..."

Sarah placed a finger over his lips. "It's fine Jareth. If I didn't want it I would have told you no. I enjoyed every second of it. I'm just not ready to walk about in the nude for you, yet."

Smirking, Jareth rubbed his nose against hers. "So I take it that one day you intend to be walking around in the nude for me?"

Blushing, Sarah turned her head. "Maybe. We'll see when that day gets here, for now..." She stopped as she thought of the favor she owed him. Part of her wanted to ask him about it, another part didn't even want to think of it. Not because she didn't want to make him feel as good as he had made her feel, but because she worried that her inexperience would make her horrible at doing such things for him and that he wouldn't enjoy it.

"For now?" He placed a finger under her chin and made her look up at him.

"Well, it's just... I don't know... That is, I've never..."

Suddenly realizing her dilemma, Jareth grinned. "Precious are you worried that I may be expecting you to return the favor?" Looking down, she nodded. "Sarah look at me." When she raised her eyes to meet his, he caressed her cheek. "I did what I did because I wanted to please you. I don't expect you to do anything like that for me unless you truly want to. I'm perfectly happy just holding you in my arms. Were you thinking I was going to ask you to do some sort of sexual act for the favor you owe me?"

"I was a little worried," Sarah admitted.

"Fear not my dear. The favor I have in mind actually requires you to wear a lot more clothes than you are currently wearing." He replied as he motioned to the simple knee length, white dress she was wearing. Seeing her confused look, he kissed her nose. "I'll explain everything at dinner tonight. Right now I would like to sit by the fire with you."

"Alright." Sarah smiled and let him lead her to the sitting room, where they made themselves comfortable in front of the fire. They talked quietly and cuddled as they watched the flames dance.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

At Ta'leena's palace, Jaxel and Alastair sat in the Crown Prince's study talking. "So Heidi really asked you to be her escort?" Jaxel asked his cousin.

"She did." Alastair smiled. "I couldn't believe it. I guess her run of the Labyrinth really changed her view of things."

"I'll say." Jaxel chuckled. "You playing hero probably helped change her view of you a bit. That and learning that Jareth was willing to let her die there." He shook his head. "I still can't believe his lady begged to have Heidi saved, or that he actually agreed."

"Jareth would do anything in his power to please Lady Sarah. That much I can tell. He would never have risked angering the Labyrinth before." Alastair stated. "She's a good woman. She'll make a fine Queen and excellent wife for Jareth."

Jaxel nodded. "I look forward to meeting her. I just hope that once he introduces her and makes his announcement of their engagement and with Heidi's decision to stop pursuing the throne, that mother will drop it. I doubt it though. You know how she hates humans."

Sighing, Alastair stood and walked to the fireplace. "I know. I told Heidi about Uncle. Now that she understands Auntie's hatred and she understands our concern for the situation. She gave me her word that she would help us protect Lady Sarah."

"That's good. The more people on Jareth's side the better." Jaxel stated as he sat at his desk. "Now on to other matters. I hear that your brother will be attending the New Year's Ball." Jaxel smirked.

Alastair covered his face with his hand and groaned. "Oh no, not Oliver. I thought he was off making friends with the Dragon Clan?"

"According to his letter, he is returning home just in time for the ball and is bringing a representative of one of the Clans to meet Mother," Jaxel told him as he held the letter up.

"I just hope he doesn't embarrass us all," Alastair said.

Jaxel laughed. "I'm sure it will be fine, cousin."

"I hope you're right." Alastair shook his head and sat back on the couch. Jaxel laughed at his exasperated expression and the two continued talking about plans for the ball that was only two days away.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

In another part of the palace, Ta'leena was speaking with her trusted adviser, Reimondo. "You know what you must do, correct?"

"Yes, Majesty. I will go to the Goblin Castle and make sure all the preparations for the ball are in order. I will also find out what I can about the human." Reimondo answered.

"Yes, and if needed when the time comes I need you to get rid of her," Ta'leena stated. "If Jareth truly intends to go through with this nonsense then I will do what I have to in order to protect him, the Court, and the entire Underground."

"As you command my Queen." Reimondo bowed to her and left to prepare for his trip to the Goblin City.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

That night at dinner, Jareth had a feast laid out on the table for Sarah and even had candles lit, giving the room a very romantic atmosphere. They made small talk as they ate, and Jareth tried his best to talk about anything other than his favor. He was dreading telling Sarah about it and what he wanted her to do for him, though he knew he would have to at some point. He just hoped she didn't blow up at him.

Sarah took a sip of her cider and looked across the table at Jareth. "So when are you going to tell me about this favor?"

Chuckling, Jareth ran his hand through his hair. "I did say I would tell you about it at dinner, didn't I?"

"Yes, you did."

"Very well then. Well, you know that the High Queen wanted to arrange a marriage between myself and Heidi." He started.

"Yes, and you said that was taken care of," Sarah stated.

"Mostly." Jareth sighed. "There are a couple of things I still must do in order to appease Ta'leena. One is I have to host the annual New Year's ball, which is in two days."

"That doesn't sound so bad." Sarah smiled. "That actually might be fun."

"Apparently we have very different ideas of what fun is," Jareth grumbled.

"What's so bad about hosting a ball? You created a ball for me." She smiled.

Grinning, he nodded. "That I did. I have to say that was the most enjoyable ball I've even been to, even if it did end rather abruptly."

"See, it won't be so bad."

"With you at my side, I believe you are right. Which is one thing I need help with. I have to play nice with the Court and be a proper host. Normally I let Ta'leena's adviser see to everything and once the ball begins I hide and let the goblins clean the mess in the morning. This time, however, I'm actually required to be around and socialize. I'd like it if you were on my arm all night."

"I see no issue with it." Sarah grinned. "What else? This seems too little for a favor you worked so hard to earn."

Taking a deep breath, Jareth nodded. "Yes, well part of appeasing the High Queen is that introduce you to the Court and make a formal announcement. If I don't do so by the end of the ball, I am to marry Heidi or be punished for disobeying her orders."

"Punished how?" Sarah asked as she started getting an uneasy feeling.

"I will be executed for treason."

"Executed!" Sarah exclaimed. "You can't be serious?!"

"Sadly I am very serious. She is very insistent about this. Ta'leena hates humans and it seems she's willing to go to great extremes to prevent me from marrying one." Jareth explained.

"Wait, I never agreed to a marriage." Sarah protested.

"Yet, but I have made my intentions clear to you and to the Court. I wish to make you my wife and Queen, if and when you are ready and agree to it. Sadly Ta'leena is forcing my hand a bit. While I have stated my intention and agreed to introduce you to the court, she wants more. I'm expected to make a formal announcement of our engagement at the ball." Jareth informed her.

"No, Jareth... I'm not... This is too fast."

"Sarah, just listen to me. Hear me out." Jareth pleaded as he reached across the table and took her hands in his. "I'm not asking you to make a decision right this moment about marrying me. I'm not even asking you if you'll be my wife. All I ask is that you play along. I can do what I must in order to appease her and court, but it will only work if you play along. I intend to simply introduce you to the room, announcing you as the woman I intend to marry. It's not a lie as I told you my intentions months ago. I've never hidden that fact from you."

"So basically you intended to bullshit your way through the engagement announcement by twisting words to make them believe we're engaged? And you want me to play along?" Sarah asked.

"Yes. I don't like doing it, but Precious I see no other option. If I don't do this Ta'leena will try to punish me, which will either end with my death or a war. Let them think what they want. Once this is all over I'll be free from them and I can continue to court you. If we eventually marry, which I hope we do," He paused to lift one of her hands to his lips and kissed it gently, "then no harm. If you decide later you no longer want to be romantically involved with me, no harm is done either. You're not bound by any laws or agreements of the Court. Our courtship is between us and no one else. Since I haven't met your parents nor have you met mine, no official contract has been, nor will one be drawn up." He squeezed her hands gently. "Sarah all I ask is you help me end this ridiculous arranged marriage thing once and for all so that you and I can have our chance at happiness."

Sarah furrowed her brow and bite the inside of her cheek as she thought it over. "Why wait to tell me this now? You've known about this for a while."

Nodding, Jareth released her hands and stood. "I have, but I didn't want to worry you with it. I wanted your trip here to be as pleasant as possible and for you to enjoy it all with out worrying about the High Queen and the Court." He walked around the table and knelt by her side. "Also I was hoping to find a solution to this predicament that didn't involve exposing you to the Court. Sadly I've been unable to find a viable solution." He took her hand in his and held it to his chest. "Please Sarah. Do this for me, for us."

Sighing, Sarah used the hand that he wasn't holding to brush his hair from his face. "So if I do this we'll be free from the High Queen trying to interfere and you and I can be a normal couple?" She asked. Then smirking she added, "Well as normal as things can be with you."

Smiling, Jareth kissed her hand. "I give you my word. I will keep Ta'leena and the Court out of our affairs after this and we will have as normal of a courtship as you wish."

"Well, I'm not thrilled with the idea of lying to the High Queen or any of the Court for that matter."

"I'm not asking you to lie, Precious. Just leave the talking to me and play along. I intend to keep conversation to a minimal. My goal for the night is to have you in my arms as much as possible, dancing the night away." He grinned.

"And what do you expect me to say if the High Queen or anyone else directly asks me if we're engaged, or when the wedding is?" She inquired.

"Simply say you've agreed to my offer, which you have. You agreed to let me court you. As for a wedding date, tell them we have yet to discuss such things." Jareth offered.

"So you want me to lie by omission?"

"It's not a lie. It's just leaving out details." Jareth released her hand and stood up.

Sarah shook her head as she watched him lean against the table. "Still a lie Goblin King. Later you and I need to have a long talk about what is and isn't a lie and what is acceptable behavior here and Aboveground." She sighed, pushed her chair back, and stood. Coming to stand directly in front of him, Sarah looked him in the eyes. "Alright. I'll play along. I want this whole arranged marriage thing over. Just promise me that once this is over, if the High Queen or anyone else tries to come between us, you'll tell me. No more trying to solve issues alone without making me worry. We are officially a couple now and that means we talk and work things out together." She leaned closer and wrapped her arms around his neck. "Deal?"

"Deal." Jareth wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her against him. "Shall we seal it with a kiss?" He whispered.

Sarah closed the distance between them and touched her lips against his softly. This kiss quickly became a deep and passionate one, as all their kisses tended to be. Soon Jareth was carrying her to the sitting room and laying her down in front of the fire. He laid beside her and they snuggled by the fire, talking until both began to yawn. Tossing a crystal up, Jareth changed them both into their sleep clothes and then transported them to his bedroom, specifically to his bed. Covering them both with the blankets, Jareth rolled onto his back and Sarah instantly snuggled close to him, her head resting on his chest.

"Goodnight my precious Sarah," Jareth said quietly as he kissed her forehead.

"Goodnight Jareth," Sarah responded as he eyes slowly closed. Jareth smiled and savored the feel of her in his arms for a bit before both he and Sarah drifted off to the land of dreams.

~*~*~*~/.../~*~*~*~

Next morning Hoggle arrived to inform the King that the High Queen's adviser had arrived to begin preparations for the ball. Jareth reluctantly left Sarah in the Dwarf's care and went to see to the castle. Over the next two days, Jareth was back and forth between the castle and his winter home. When he wasn't with Sarah, she was spending time with Hoggle, Sir Didymus, and Ludo. Occasionally her goblins would drop in to visit for a while until the King called for them.

Sarah offered to help, but Jareth insisted on her remaining at the house and relaxing while he took care of all the arrangements. When he was able to spend time with her, Jareth made sure to enjoy every minute they had together. They went for walks in the snow, even had another snowball fight. After warming by the fire they cuddled on the couch and read to each other. Sarah read some of the stories she used to act out to Jareth, while he read her tales of the Underground. Dinner was the only meal they were about to share, but Jareth made sure Sarah had whatever she wanted to eat through out the day. After dinner, they would relax by the fireplace until bedtime. Jareth was enjoying going to bed each night and waking each morning with Sarah in his bed and in his arms. He was getting spoiled and he knew sleeping would be difficult if not impossible once she went home.

The morning of New Year's Eve, Sarah woke to find herself alone in Jareth's large bed. There was a note waiting for her on the table along with a single red rose. The note said that Jareth had to go to the castle early to finish setting up for the ball, but he would come get her when it was time for her to join him at the castle. Sarah spent the day reading, chatting with her friends, and taking an occasional nap on the couch.

Just before dinner time, Jareth returned to the house and found his Sarah asleep on the couch. Smiling, he sat on the edge of the couch. Leaning over he kissed her lightly on the lips. "Sarah." He called to her.

With a soft moan, Sarah slowly opened her eyes. Blinking to clear the sleep from her eyes, she smiled when she saw Jareth's handsome face. "Hey."

"Did you have a pleasant nap, my dear?" He asked.

"I did."

"Good. It's time to head to the castle, Precious." Jareth stated as he stood and held his hand out to her. She stretched and then took his hand. He helped her up and pulled her into his arms. "Close your eyes." She did and she felt the familiar feeling of him transporting them with his magic.

When she felt solid ground under her feet again, she opened her eyes and was surprised by what she saw. Looking around, Sarah noticed the throne room was empty, no Goblins or chickens in sight and it was clean. "Where are the Goblins and chickens?"

"Outside. Where they will stay for the evening unless they are part of the kitchen staff," Jareth replied.

Before Sarah could respond, she was tackled by five Goblins who all cried out, "Lady!"

She stumbled back but managed to keep her balance. "Hi, gang." She smiled.

"Oh, yes and your Goblins are allowed to be inside to assist you," Jareth added.

"Why Lady not dressed?" Flower asked.

"You'll be helping her with that," Jareth answered. "You lot, take her to her room and help her pick out a dress."

"Now? When does the ball start?" Sarah was beginning to feel rushed.

"In about an hour they should start arriving, so go with your Goblins and prepare. There's a room made up for you and the wardrobe is filled with dresses in your size. There's also a full sized bath if you wish to wash up." Jareth smirked and sat on his throne.

"Is there anything I should be aware of before this starts? Any proper etiquette I need to follow?"

Leaning back in his throne, Jareth crossed his legs. " Not really. The guests will show up, dance, drink my ale, eat my food, and once the High Queen retires, they will vanish faster than a Goblin that is caught stealing." Jareth stood. "So we just have to grin and bear it until my mother leaves."

"Until your... Wait, your mother is the High Queen!" Sarah exclaimed.

"Yes Precious. Although she's nothing like a mother as you would know. She's Queen first, wife second, and mother last." He started pacing the room. "Fear not Sarah. You're the guest of honor and I'll be by your side the whole time. All you need do is bow and politely greet her. With luck, she'll leave it at that and we'll be free to dance the night away. Though I am a little worried about some of the others." He rubbed his chin, thinking. Turning to her he smiled. "Sarah, do me a favor."

"What?"

"Make sure the medallion I gave you can be seen at all times." He smirked.

"Wait, I thought I wasn't supposed to let any one see it?"

"You'll hopefully be at my side all evening so they'll be no doubt that you have a duplicate," Jareth explained as he took her hands in his. "Just ignore any comments any of them might make and if asked simply say you are with me and I gave it to you as a gift."

"What might they say?" Sarah asked as she looked at Jareth's hands that were holding hers. "I thought you were supposed to make an announcement saying we're engaged. Why would I need to let them think anything else?"

"Traditionally, announcements such as that as done at midnight. Until then, only those that I formally introduce you to will know you're my intended. I know I'm asking a lot of you, but please Sarah, listen to me and ignore everyone else. I don't want anyone to try something foolish." Jareth pleaded.

Sarah leaned against the wall and looked down at the Goblins, who had been silently listening to their King and their Lady. "So you want me to be a pretty decoration on your arm tonight and let everyone think I'm your property until you make the formal announcement?" Sarah looked up, her eyes filled with anger. "I won't do it. It's bad enough I have to lie, even if it's by omission. The hell with tradition, make the announcement, to begin with, and get it over with."

Jareth sighed, "Alright Sarah. Keep the medallion hidden, just promise you'll stay by my side and if for some reason you are separated from me, keep your Goblins close." He stepped closer and brushed her hair from her face. "And for the record, I never thought of you being a decoration on my arm. I planned on you being my sanity through this whole affair, my dance partner, and someone to talk to." He cupped her chin and made her look him in the eyes. "If anyone in this room is to be a slave, it is I. I would happily be your slave."

Sarah shook her head. "No need for that. I'm fine with you being my glittery pain in the ass boyfriend who just happens to be a king." She smiled.

Chuckling, Jareth pulled her into a warm hug. "Keep it up and I'll make sure you're, as you call it, glittery for the entire night."

"Are all of your kind covered in glitter of is it just you? Sarah asked as she returned his hug.

"Depends on what Kingdom they're part of and their magic type. The Pixie Queen is a lot worse than I but for the record, it is not glitter. I'm sure you've heard of pixie dust."

Sarah pulled away to look at him. "Are you telling me all the glitter is pixie dust?"

"Of sorts. Only pixies have pixie dust. My sparkle comes from the Labyrinth. Each Kingdom has a unique magic dust of sorts. Since the Goblin Kingdom relies on the power of the Labyrinth, we give off a sparkly dust."

"Glitter," Sarah said plainly. "It's magic glitter, but still glitter."

Jareth laughed. "Alright, alright." He formed an orb behind his back. "If you must call it glitter then I guess you'll have to wear it!" He tossed the orb at her and it exploded, covering her in silver glitter.

"Hey!" Sarah exclaimed.

"Now I suggest you bathe and dress before our guests begin to arrive." He turned to the Goblins. "Take care of our Lady and help her in any way you can."

"Yes Kingy!" the four shouted while Grunt simply saluted.

Jareth turned to leave, turning his back on Sarah, who was brushing glitter off of herself. Getting frustrated, she groaned and made a fist. To her and the Goblins surprise, an orb formed in her hand. Without thinking, she threw it at Jareth. It collided with his rear and exploded, leaving a large amount of hot pink glitter on his pants. Sarah immediately covered her mouth in shock and to hold in her laughter.

Turning back, Jareth looked at his pants the best he could, then at Sarah. "Was this your doing Precious?" He didn't sound angry but he certainly wasn't amused.

"I'm sorry Jareth," she said quickly. "I didn't mean to. I don't even know how it happened. I was frustrated and suddenly there was an orb in my hand and without thinking I threw it."

The Goblins were hiding behind Sarah, but when Jareth strode towards her, they vanished. "Make a fist."

"What?"

"Do exactly as you did before," he instructed as he crossed his arms.

"Okay." Sarah brushed herself off and made a fist just as before. A second crystal formed and before she could react, Jareth grabbed it from her hand. "How did I do that? I'm not wearing your medallion again, am I?"

"The Labyrinth. You are the Champion, so the power is also yours to use. The true medallion is around my neck." He studied the crystal Sarah made carefully. It was another orb filled with hot pink glitter. He tossed it up and vanished, along with the glitter from his pants. "Your medallion links you to the Labyrinth as well, though I never expected you to be able to summon magic this soon."

"Is that a bad thing?"

"Not necessarily." Jareth rubbed his chin "I'll have to work with you as it seems to be linked to your emotions. Don't want you accidentally blowing something up."

"Blow up?" Sarah panicked. "Wait, I never wanted this..."

Jareth held up his hand. "Relax Precious. You'll be fine. Now go upstairs and get ready. I'll come get you when its time." He looked for the Goblins but found them missing. "Now where did they go?"

"They probably ran off thinking you were angry. You're not mad at me are you?" Sarah asked.

Jareth chuckled. "Under normal circumstances, I would be. You used magic unconsciously so I can't be mad at you for that, but be warned, Sarah. Now that you know you can use the Labyrinth's magic," he stepped closer and closer until her back was against the wall. "Any further attacks like this won't be ignored."

"You started it Glitterbutt!" Sarah protested, hands on her hips.

"Glitter..." Jareth's mouth hung open.

"Yes, you started this by covering me in glitter, Glitterbutt." She jabbed his chest with her index finger. "And before you pull the whole I'm King bull, remember you said I was your equal and to treat you as a normal guy, therefore you have to do the same and forget you're a King when dealing with me. Just because we're back at your castle doesn't mean you get to slip back into the scary Goblin King persona. You're my boyfriend no matter where we are and you are to act like the real you when I'm around. Besides, I think letting others see your softer side now and then might actually help your relations with others."

Jareth closed his mouth, glared a moment, then sighed. "You're correct, Sarah." He smiled slightly. "I was slipping back into old habits. This is the reason I need you by my side." He brushed some glitter from her hair. "How about a truce. No more glitter or other pranks, at least not tonight."

Sarah thought a moment then stepped closer to him. "Deal."

Jareth wrapped his arms around her. "And for the record, you look lovely covered in glitter." He whispered before he kissed her softly.

"Yeah, well don't get too used to it I think you sparkle enough for both of us," Sarah replied.

Chuckling, Jareth nodded. "As you wish. Now since I apparently scared off your Goblins, please allow me to escort you to your room. Time is short and you need to dress for the ball." He held out his hand to her and led her upstairs to a large bedroom, which just happened to be right next to his.

Jareth opened the door and held it for Sarah. She walked into a bedroom larger than any she had ever seen before, even larger than the one she had at his winter home. The canopy bed looked larger than even a California King. The bed and curtains were a deep emerald green with lighter shades of green around the room. There was a large fireplace with 2 chairs and a sofa situated in front of it. There were 3 large wardrobes against one wall, several bookshelves that were empty, a small table with chairs, and 3 doors other than the one she just entered through. Sarah walked to the glass door and opened it to find it led to a large balcony with a gorgeous view of the Labyrinth. Looking over the railing, she didn't even notice Jareth until he was right beside her. "Do you like it?"

She jumped slightly at his sudden nearness. "I love it. Thank you." She hugged him and he wrapped his arms around her. "I don't need all of this, though. A simple small room would do."

"Nonsense," Jareth argued. "Only the best for you, my dear. If it's in my power to provide it, I shall do so. After all, what good is it to be King if I can't spoil my beloved?"

Sarah smiled and pulled out of his embrace. "I appreciate it, but you still don't have to do all this for me."

"And I say that I do. Now come." He held his hand out to her and she gladly took it "Now the door over there leads to your private bath. If you wish to wash up all the necessities are in there. Personally, I think you should leave the glitter." Sarah stuck her tongue out at his comment. Chuckling, he headed for the door. "Call for your Goblins if you need help dressing. I shall return when it's time for the ball to begin." He bowed to her and left closing the door behind him.

Sarah hurried over to the bathroom door and nearly fell over at what she saw. The room was at least half the size of the bedroom with a large in-ground tub that was almost large enough to be a pool. There were rows of various oils, soaps, shampoos, and conditioners on a table by the tub. The toilet was even extremely decorative and the sink had a huge mirror and large counters on each side.

Shaking her head, Sarah giggled. "He certainly is trying to tempt me into just staying here forever."

"Lady gonna stay?"

Sarah turned to see Flower behind her. "It's very tempting when he gives me a bathroom like this."

"Kingy be happy if Lady stays." Flower grinned.

"Maybe." Sarah looked around. "Well, better get cleaned up and dressed. Tell the others to pick out a few dresses for me to choose from and then give me a hand please."

"Sure thing Lady." Flower rushed out to tell the others Sarah's wish. When she returned, Sarah was already in the tub relaxing. Flower helped get the glitter off Sarah's body and out of her hair.

While Sarah was enjoying her bath, Jareth was busy making sure everything was ready for the ball. Having Sarah by his side all night might prevent the High Queen from being too inquisitive or it could back fire on him and lead to an extremely awkward situation for Jareth. He hoped that he could keep his distance from his mother for most of the night by keeping Sarah on the dance floor and having her in his arms all night was an added bonus.

When it was almost time for the ball to begin, Jareth instructed the Goblins to let their guests into the ballroom. He headed up to Sarah's room and found Patch waiting outside. "Kingy!" the little Goblin rushed over. "Lady almost ready. Flower and Cam is helping with hair and makeup."

"Which dress did she choose?"

"Not supposed to tell," Patch said as he slowly backed away.

"At least tell me the color so that I may dress to match your Lady and provide her with the correct color corsage," Jareth instructed.

"Lady in blue."

"Blue?" Jareth was a little surprised. "Interesting. Well, I shall attend to my attire then." With a flick of his wrist a crystal appeared and he immediately tossed it up and it exploded over his head and when the cloud of glitter dispersed, Jareth was in a formal suit of royal blue. The jacket was similar to the one he wore when he danced with Sarah the previous two times, but without all the gems. He decided a simple velvet suit would suffice, after all, he had no need to show off tonight. He knew Sarah wasn't that impressed by his flashy clothes and he hoped to avoid the attention of others tonight. "Patch, please tell our Lady I await her presence and that the ball is about to begin."

Before Patch could reply, the door opened and Dusty peeked out. "Hi, Kingy!" He waved. "Lady is ready. She coming now."

"Very good." The King smiled. He straightened his jacket and watched the door anxiously.

A few moments later, though it felt like an eternity to Jareth, Sarah stepped out into the hall and Jareth was speechless. The dress was the color of a brilliant sapphire and the gems on it made her sparkle like the jewel. It was form fitting, with a split up the right side. The neckline was high, but there was a heart shaped window in the chest. Sarah grinned and spun around to show him the dress from all sides. The fact that the dress had a closed back and long sleeves made it all the more alluring in his mind. Her long dark hair was pulled up into a braided bun with a few strands in front hanging just right to frame her face. Her makeup, if she was even wearing any, was completely natural. The only thing that was noticeable was the deep red lipstick she wore.

"So how do I look?" Sarah asked nervously as she stood before him.

"Oh, you precious thing." He smirked. "I'm half tempted to lock you in your room for the night. I'm not sure I can allow other men to see you looking so incredibly beautiful."

Sarah ducked her head blushing slightly. "But then who would be your dance partner?"

Jareth stepped closer and wrapped an arm around her slender waist. "You, of course, darling. I never said I'd lock you in your room alone now did I?" He used his free hand to cup her chin.

Sarah gazed into his eyes and smiled. "What about the High Queen?"

"To hell with her and everyone else. There's only one woman I wish to entertain this evening." He leaned closer as he gazed into her green eyes.

Sarah placed her hands on his shoulders and firmly pushed him away before he could kiss her and make her forget everything but him. "Oh no, you don't. I will not be responsible for pissing off the High Queen." Sarah chuckled as he continued to try and kiss her.

"Clever girl." A voice came from behind them, causing both to jump. "Smarter than my rogue of a son."

Jareth instantly pushed Sarah behind him. "Mother."

High Queen Ta'leena smirked. "Well Jareth, where are your manners? Aren't you going to introduce your little human to your mother?"

Chapter Text

Sarah looked at the woman, then at Jareth. He stepped in front of Sarah glaring at the High Queen. "Why are you here mother?"

"For the ball of course." she smiled.

"I meant here, in the hall near my personal chambers and not in the ballroom with everyone else." he replied his voice full of venom.

"Well the ball was supposed to start several minutes ago, but my son who is to be the host was nowhere to be found. So I came to find you." the High Queen walked around Jareth to look at Sarah. "Now stop being rude and introduce me to your little human."

Jareth stepped aside to give Sarah a chance to greet the Queen. "Sarah I present to you high Queen Ta'leena. Mother this is the Lady Sarah the Champion of the Labyrinth."

Sarah curtsied and kept her head down. "It's an honor to meet you, your Majesty."

Queen Ta'leena looked Sarah over. "Champion you say?" She grinned. "So she's the one that beat you?"

Jareth nodded. "Yes, Sarah was the first to complete the Labyrinth in 13 hours." He replied as he studied his mother. She knew Sarah was the Champion and the one that beat him so why was she playing dumb. He couldn't figure out what her game was.

The Queen walked around the two looking them both over. "She's prettier than I'd been lead to believe. I am surprised you haven't claimed as yours yet especially if you're bringing her to the ball." Ta'leena stated as she noticed that Sarah didn't bear the seal of the Goblin King.

"Sarah belongs to no one but herself. She's with me of her own free will and I will not force her into anything." Jareth told her as he wrapped an arm protectively around her. "She's under my protection and anyone who tries anything will have to go through me. That includes you mother."

"Free will?" The Queen laughed. "Are you seriously courting this human? You honestly think she could love you?"

Jareth's grip on Sarah tightened and she felt his muscles tense. "I am courting her and I have every intention of making her my wife and Queen. I will be introducing her to the court and making a public announcement tonight, just as you wanted." He was certain now that she was trying to pretend she didn't know of his intentions and that she may even try to back out of the arrangement that he present Sarah at the ball or marry Heidi. He knew she would do something to come between him and Sarah, but what good would pretending she knew nothing about it do?

"Foolish child." His mother scolded. "Any human would befriend you for your riches and magic, but then you don't have much else to offer. Bed her and be done with it. Once she sees there are other males that can offer her better riches than you possess, she'll leave and try to seduce them." Jareth gritted his teeth as her plan started to become clear.

"That's not true!" Sarah shouted pulling free of Jareth's grip. She stepped in front of him and glared at the Queen. "He may not be the most social guy, but he has a good heart. Yes, I thought he was a sneaky villain when we first met. I hated him for taking Toby but I've since realized that he was only doing as I asked. He's offered me his kingdom and everything I could ever want and I refused it all. But I still want to be with him and spend time with him. I enjoy being with him for who he is. I like Jareth himself not his title of Goblin King."

"Sarah..." Jareth tried to interrupt.

"I'm not done Jareth." she looked at him and then back to the High Queen. "And while I may not feel for him as strongly as I know he feels for me, I think... I think that I do love him and I'm willing to give him a chance. He can be demanding and annoying at times but I wouldn't have him any other way." She gave him a soft smile and then looked once more at his mother. "As for you, your Highness, maybe if you got to know your son you'd see he's a damn good man and excellent King."

Jareth stared at Sarah with a goofy grin on his face. He was touched by her words and he was impressed she had the guts to stand up to his mother. He quickly looked over to see the High Queen was furious. His mother's hands were at her sides, clenched in rage. Seeing this Jareth moved to get in between her and Sarah.

"Wench! How dare you talk to me like that!" Her hand came up and a bright light surrounded it. She thrust her hands toward Sarah as if she were throwing something and a beam of light shot towards Sarah.

"Nooo!" Jareth dove in front of Sarah and the beam hit him square in the chest knocking him to the floor.

"Jareth!" Sarah knelt beside him and lifted his head to her lap. He winced in pain as she examined the wound.

"Fool! You'd risk yourself for her?" his mother demanded.

"I'd give my life to keep her safe," Jareth said firmly.

"Jareth..." Sarah cradle this head.

"I'll be alright Precious." He assured her. "I've taken worse shots than this."

"That you have son, but you won't stop me this time." She raised her hand again and prepared to attack.

Before she got the chance she was tackled by five goblins. "You no hurt lady!" Cam shouted.

"We no lets you be mean to our Lady!" Dusty added.

After struggling for a bit, the goblins soon had her pinned. "Jareth call off your wretched goblins!"

Slowly standing with some help from Sarah, Jareth looked at his mother. "Afraid I can't. They aren't mine."

"What? You rule these creatures so how are they not yours?" The High Queen asked.

"Those five are special goblins. You see they serve a different master. They are loyal to me, but I've learned that their love for Sarah is greater. These are my Champion's personal goblins." Jareth smirked. "Now if you promise to leave Lady Sarah alone perhaps they will allow you to join the party." He summoned a crystal and pressed it against his chest. The wound instantly healed and his clothes were repaired as well. He held his hand out the Sarah who quickly took it. "Come dearest we're already late for the ball."He started to lead her down the hall and stopped and looked back. "And mother do remember what happened last time you went up against the Goblin Kingdom." He turned away and led Sarah down the hall.

"Will they be alright?" Sarah asked once they were away from the High Queen.

"The Goblins? Don't worry. They'll be fine. It's extremely hard to kill a goblin, plus mother won't risk another War. She tried to conquer this Kingdom long ago when the previous King was alive. She lost half her Army and never even made it to the Goblin City." He chuckled.

"She went against the previous King?" Sarah inquired.

"Yes, over a thousand years ago when the previous Goblin King ruled. He refused to bow to Ta'leena's will and she tried to take over. It failed and sadly the king died of disease shortly after mother gave up her attempt to overthrow him. The throne was empty until I took it." Jareth explained.

"By running the Labyrinth?"

"Correct Sarah. The crown of the Goblin King can only be obtained three ways, by killing the current King, running the Labyrinth if no King currently sits on the throne, or passed to the goblin Prince or Princess. I earned it by completing the labyrinth and I hope to one day pass it on to my children." He gave her a soft smile as he stopped in front of the door. "But enough of that. Let's join the party shall we?" He opened and held the door for Sarah.

Stepping into the ballroom, she stopped and stared and all at all the people in beautiful suits and dresses. She was reminded of the dream she had while running the Labyrinth. Her thoughts were interrupted when Jareth came to stand beside her. "It's amazing." She whispered.

"Like a dream?" He smirked.

"Not funny." She glared at him. "To this day I can't eat peaches because of you."

"How unfortunate. Peaches are my favorite." He grinned and held his arm out to her which she gladly accepted. "I suppose I should be a good host and greet them."

"It would probably shock them," Sarah said as she walked with him to the small staircase that led to a pair of chairs that overlooked the entire ballroom.

Stopping at the top, Jareth motioned to the musicians to stop for a moment. When the music stopped everyone looked around to see what was going on. Their eyes quickly spotted Jareth and they waited to see what he was up to. He kissed Sarah's hand before letting it go. Stepping forward, he wondered if she realized he was trying to warn the others that she was his in an indirect way. "I'd like to welcome you all to my home tonight. Please enjoy the food, ale, and music." He bowed and motioned for the music to start up again and returned to Sarah's side.

"There, now was that so hard?" Sarah teased.

"What is that phrase you human use? Like plucking teeth?"

"You mean like pulling teeth?"

"That's the one." Jareth wrapped his arm around her waist. "Yes, it was like pulling teeth. I'd rather drop them in the bog than pretend to like them."

"None of that. Remember you're supposed to be turning over a new leaf." Sarah took his arm and turned him to face the room. "Now I've already met the High Queen. Is there anyone else I should know and possibly avoid?"

Jareth searched the crowd. "Well over by the pillar is Jaxel he's very loyal to the High Queen. I'd avoid him unless I'm with you. He's a big womanizer and doesn't care about race."

"He's the Crown Prince, isn't he? Your brother?"

Jareth nodded. "Yes and according to Alastair he's on our side, but I would still be careful around him."

Sarah nodded and listened intently as he pointed out more people of interest. From what he told her, Sarah was certain she'd be on his arm all night. Most weren't very fond of humans and the single ladies in the room would be glaring and plotting against her for being on Jareth's arm. While he held no interest in them, it hadn't stopped them from trying to flirt or even bed him. The Goblin Kingdom wasn't the most luxurious or grand but it was a kingdom without a Queen and there were those that would do anything for power.

"But enough of that." He wrapped an arm around her waist and pulled her to him. Leaning close, he whispered, "Will you do me the honor of making every man in this room extremely jealous?"

"And how are you going to do that?" Sarah asked with a smile.

"By dancing the night away with the most beautiful woman in the room." He let her go and stepped in front of her. Bowing to Sarah, Jareth held his hand out to her. Blushing slightly, she took his hand and let him lead her onto the dance floor.

He walked to the middle of the room, knowing he was gaining the attention of more and more people. He didn't care. Let them stare and talk. He had his Sarah and she was in his arms. He held her close and swayed to the music. "Did you mean it?" He whispered.

"What?" Sarah barely heard him.

"Did you mean what you told my mother?" He pulled back slightly to look her in the eyes. "That you think you love me?"

Smiling, Sarah caressed his cheek. "I did."

Grinning from ear-to-ear he could hardly contain his joy. "Oh, Sarah." He pulled her into a tight embrace. "You have no idea how happy I am to hear that."

"We're still going to take it slow Jareth." She said sternly. "I'm not agreeing to be your Queen or anything just yet."

"Of course Precious. One step at a time." He said nodding. He lifted her hand to his lips and kissed it. "Could you say it again, directly to me this time."

She looked into his eyes and tried not to blush at the intense emotion she saw there. Nodding slightly, Sarah kissed his cheek. "I believe I can do better than that." She pulled him close and whispered in his ear. "I love you Jareth."

Jareth closed his eyes and whispered back, "I love you, Sarah." He rocked her gently to the music. "Thank you for putting up with me, for being here with me tonight and for giving me a chance."

"Thank you for everything." She replied. "For giving me the time and space I need and for spoiling me like a Princess."

"Queen." He corrected.

She laughed at him and shook her head. "Whatever."

As the song came to an end, Jareth summoned a crystal which he tossed in the air. Sarah watched as it floated to the musicians and turned into a note. The Maestro read it and nodded to the Goblin King. Jareth nodded back and bowed to Sarah as the music started. Her eyes grew wide as she realized what song was playing. Jareth smirked and gave her a quick kiss before he began to serenade her. "There's such a sad love, deep in your eyes..."

As the two of them danced, slowly everyone stopped and watched them. No one in the room except Sarah knew the significance of the song and very few of them had ever heard Jareth sing. Soon the entire room had stopped to listen and watch them dance, but neither of them noticed. Jareth was busy singing to his beloved and she was lost in his eyes. As far as they were concerned, no one else existed at that moment.

When the song ended, Jareth kissed her cheek. "Do you trust me?"

Sarah stared at him confused, completely caught off guard by his sudden question. "Of course I do."

"Good. Then please play along and follow my lead, dearest." He whispered before kissing her softly. Sarah wrapped her arms around his neck and returned his kiss. A soft moan escaped his throat as she deepened the kiss. He had intended on simply giving her a quick kiss, but she obviously had other ideas, not that he would be complaining. Sarah had forgotten where they were and had no clue they were being watched by the entire room because when they separated and the room filled with whispers, she turned a deep shade of red.

Before he could react, loud clapping echoed from behind them. They both turned to see Crown Prince Jaxel walking towards them. "Bravo, brother!" He grinned as he walked towards them. "Do tell us who this beautiful lady is. She must be quite special to get you singing and dancing like that."

"Jaxel." Jareth nodded to his brother. He pulled Sarah close and wrapped both arms around her, keeping her as close as possible. He cleared his throat and the room became silent again. Raising his voice slightly, he addressed the entire room. "Normally announcements such as this are made at midnight, but since I'm sure many of you are wondering who this beauty in my arms is and I want it clear who she is and that she is to be given the utmost respect by everyone here tonight, I shall make introductions and my announcement now." He released her just enough to look her in the eyes and caressed her cheek with one hand. "Everyone, I present to you my love, my lady, the Champion of the Labyrinth, the Lady Sarah."

The minute he introduced her the room filled with gasps and whispers. It was clear most if not all of them had heard of Sarah. Jaxel's eyes widened. "This is the Lady Sarah?" Jareth nodded and his brother turned to Sarah and bowed. "It's an honor to meet you, my Lady."

"Sarah this is my brother, Jaxel, the Crown Prince of the High Court," Jareth said even though she was already aware of who he was.

Sarah curtsied. "Pleasure to meet you Majesty."

Jaxel studied Sarah and Jareth knew what he and everyone else in the room was looking for. He summoned a crystal and handed it to Sarah. When it touched her hand it turned into her medallion. She knew it was hers by the chain. She had switched to a longer chain to make it easier to hide, plus it was slightly smaller than the one Jareth wore. Making sure to glance around the room, Jareth made his announcement. "The Lady Sarah is my honored guest here tonight and she is the woman I intend to marry and have rule at my side." He took the medallion from her and started to place it around her neck.

"Wait a moment Jareth," Jaxel called. Jareth stopped and they both looked at him. "Lady Sarah, you do understand what wearing that means correct?

Nodding, Sarah took it from Jareth's hands and returned her medallion to its place around her neck. "I do and I have accepted Jareth's proposal."

The room filled once again with voices as they all began to gossip about the news that Jareth was not only engaged, but he was marrying a human. Jareth held his hand up to silence them once more. "Sarah is under the protection of myself and the Labyrinth. She has defeated the Labyrinth within the 13-hour time limit and earned her right to rule. If any of you have an issue with her presence here or my making her my wife and Queen, you may leave now. I will not tolerate any rudeness or foul behavior towards her." He watched as several left the ballroom and he tried hard not to grin. "Now let's return to enjoying the ball." He motioned for the music to begin again and walked Sarah to the side of the room.

Jaxel followed them and several others made their way over as well. All wanting to meet the Champion. Jareth held her hand in his and gave it a gentle squeeze as he noticed her begin to get nervous when they became surrounded. "Jareth when did you know she was the one to be your Queen?" A tall Elf male asked.

"How long have you been courting the Lady?" inquired a dwarf female.

"How did da Lady beat da Labyrinth?" a light blue troll female questioned.

"One at a time please." Jareth chuckled. "I knew Sarah was the one when she was running the Labyrinth. Her defeat of it only proved I was correct. I asked her then to stay with me."

"Says you," Sarah stated. "Sorry, Jareth saying love me, fear me, do as I say, and I will be your slave didn't really come across as asking me to stay and be your Queen."

"Apologies Precious." He kissed her cheek.

"Jareth always tried to be too romantic at times." Jaxel mused.

"So you've been courting since your run of the Labyrinth." A female Fae asked.

Sarah shook her head. "No, no. I was just a child. I didn't understand what he was saying at the time. I thought he was trying to trick me so I would lose my brother."

"Sarah refused me and returned home with young Toby," Jareth said sadly. "I was able to return to her life thanks to my trouble making goblins and I've been at her side ever since." He smiled and gave Sarah a hug. "And I intend to stay by her side forever."

"Cousin," Alastair called as he and his date for the evening made their way through the crowd.

"Alastair." Sarah smiled seeing him.

He smiled and bowed to her. "A pleasure to see you again Lady Sarah."

"You've met her before?" A female Elf asked.

"Jareth allowed me the honor of meeting her earlier this week. Lady Sarah has been staying in the Underground on holiday with my cousin. I hope you've enjoyed your trip. My cousin hasn't been a brute has he?"

Jareth glared at Alastair and Sarah chuckled. "He's been a perfect gentleman and I've had a wonderful visit. I'm sad it's almost over."

"You're leaving?" The woman that was with Alastair asked.

"For a while," Sarah answered. "I have to return home and be with my family. I also have school to finish."

"Yes, I promised not to interfere with her studies," Jareth added. "But she will be returning." Jareth looked right at the Fae in the scarlet dress. "Sarah, I'd like to introduce you to the Lady Heidi." He gestured to her with his hand.

"You're Heidi?" Sarah asked.

Heidi smiled and curtsied. "I am and I owe you my thanks. I wouldn't have been able to attend tonight's ball with Alastair if it wasn't for you."

Alastair wrapped an arm around her shoulders and Jareth raised an eyebrow at his cousin, who simply shrugged. Jareth shook his head and laughed. "It seems my Sarah is quite skilled at making many things better for all."

Several looked at the King with confused expressions, but none questioned what he meant. "Well Jareth, are you going to introduce the rest of us?" came the arrogant voice of a female Elf.

"Apologies. Where are my manners? Sarah allow me to introduce you to the members of the High Court first. This is Queen Arya of the Wood Elves."

Sarah curtsied and smiled as he introduced the Kings of the Trolls, Dwarves, and Elves and the Queens of the Elves, Pixies, and other members of the Court. She hoped she could remember which ones were Kings and Queens so that she could address them correctly if she needed. When he was done introducing everyone, Sarah bowed her head to the entire group and smiled. "It's a pleasure to meet all of you."

Queen Arya stepped forward and placed a hand under Sarah's chin and made her look at her directly. "She's polite, good bone structure, dazzling eyes, and if she beat the Labyrinth she must have a strong will." Arya let go of Sarah and smiled at Jareth. "Are you certain she's human?"

The group chuckled and Jareth nodded. "Yes, Sarah is very much human." He pulled her back into his arms and kissed her temple. "For now." He added which earned a jab in his ribs from Sarah and laughter from those standing around them.

"I'm amazed at your restraint brother," Jaxel told him. "I thought you would have surely claimed her as your by now."

"Sarah wished to take things slow and I will honor her requests. We will do her things at her pace." Jareth explained. "No wedding plans or changes or joining of any kind, formal or informal, will occur until she is ready. I'm content with simply having her at my side when I can and knowing that she cares for me as I care for her."

Sarah grinned and wrapped her arms around him. True to his word he wasn't lying to the court, nor was he claiming anything that wasn't true. It couldn't be helped if the others interrupted his words as them being officially engaged. And despite his warning of how the members of the Court might receive her, they all seemed pleasant enough. She knew that might be a front just to get close and not have Jareth kick them out of the castle, but she wasn't going to think on that for the moment.

After chatting politely for some time, a tall ash blonde Fae that Jareth had introduced as Lord Navarre, stepped forward. "If it is alright with the Goblin King, I'd light to ask the Lady Sarah for a dance."

Jareth glared at Navarre and started to refuse him, but Sarah stepped forward and nodded. "I'd be honored."

"Sarah..."

"You can't keep me wrapped in your arms forever Jareth." She told him as she turned to face him. "I'll be fine. I know you'll be watching me the whole time even if I tell you not to." She kissed him softly. "You know at the end of the dance and the end of the night I'll be with you and only you, so don't worry."

Jareth shook his head, laughing lightly as he took her hands in his. "You know me so well Precious." He kissed her hands. "Very well. Enjoy your dance with Navarre and anyone else wishing to dance with you, but I reserved your last dance of the night for myself."

Sarah bowed her head to him. "Of course my King." She said teasingly before pulling away and taking Lord Navarre's hand.

Jareth watched as Navarre led Sarah onto the dance floor. Jaxel and Alastair both noticed the jealous glares and the clenched fists. "Relax cousin. Sarah isn't going to vanish into the night." Alastair assured him.

"He's right little brother," Jaxel said as he patted Jareth on the back. "She's the perfect match for you. I don't see her bowing to you for anything. You have my approval."

"I wasn't asking for it," Jareth replied with a glare in his brother's direction.

"Well you have if even if you don't want it." Jaxel chuckled.

"Well if you two are going to argue," Alastair turned to Heidi. "Would you like to dance my Lady?"

Heidi took his offered hand and smiled. "I'd love to."

They watch Alastair and Heidi go to the dance floor and Jareth shook his head at the irony of it all. Jaxel noticed his expression return to one of jealousy when he looked back to Sarah, who was smiling and chatting happily with her dance partner. "Come on, Jareth. This should be a happy time. You've got the woman of your dreams here and now that you've introduced her and made a formal introduction, mother can't stop you from being with her."

"She can still try." Jareth groaned.

"Where is the High Queen?" The Dwarf King asked.

"That's a good question." The Elf King agreed. "I haven't seen her all night."

Jareth smirked as he remembered where she was. "She's tied up at the moment."

"Jareth what have you done with Mother?" Jaxel demanded.

"I did nothing. She tried to harm my Sarah and the goblins restrained her." He explained.

Jaxel shook his head. "You know she'll be pissed once she gets free."

"I know." Jareth sighed. "I suppose I should have Sarah get the goblins to release her."

"Why does Sarah need to do it?" Arya asked.

"The goblins that are restraining my mother are her personal goblins. They are still loyal to me, but I truly believe that if Sarah were in danger they would disobey a direct order from me." Jareth stated.

"They love her that much?" Jaxel asked.

Nodding, Jareth started to walk towards Sarah. "They do." He said before leaving the group. He walked over to Sarah and tapped Navarre on the shoulder. "Sorry to interrupt. I need a word with my lady."

Navarre nodded. "Of course, Majesty." He bowed to Sarah and smiled. "Thank you for the dance my Lady."

Once he walked away, Jareth held his hands out to Sarah, who shook her head as she stepped into his arms. "Really Jareth? I couldn't finish one dance before your jealousy kicked in?"

"Oh it kicked in the moment you took his hand, but I truly needed to speak with you Precious," Jareth informed her as he began to dance with her. "I need you to call your goblins. I believe they still have my mother restrained."

"Oh no." Sarah stopped dancing. "I had completely forgotten about the High Queen."

"As had I," Jareth smirked. "While I would be perfectly happy leaving her where she is, I know the longer she is restrained the angrier she will be. I would like to avoid her blowing up my castle."

Sarah let go of his hand and nodded. "Goblins to me."

Suddenly four of the five goblins appeared in front of them. "Lady ok?" Flower asked.

"I'm fine," Sarah told the little goblin. "Do you still have the High Queen restrained?"

"Mean Queenie still saying she will hurts our Lady." Patch explained.

"Grunt sits on her head," Dusty added.

"I need you to let her go. She's probably furious now." Sarah said.

"But she wants to hurts Lady," Cam argued as he hugged her leg.

"Sarah will be fine little one. I will keep her safe." Jareth said as he looked at each of the goblins. "Plus I don't think mother would try anything in front of everyone."

The goblins exchanged looks with one another and then vanished. A moment later the main doors slammed and the High Queen charged in. "Where are they?" She demanded.

Jareth pushed Sarah behind him. "Stay behind me, Sarah. No matter what."

Alastair and Heidi stopped dancing when they heard the High Queen shout. "Where are my son and that wretched human!"

Alastair, Heidi, and Jaxel hurried to Jareth and Sarah's side. "What happened?" Heidi asked.

"Why is Auntie so upset?" Alastair asked.

"Mother tried to harm Sarah before the ball started. Sarah's goblins have had her restrained this entire time." Jareth explained.

The crowded ballroom suddenly looked less crowded as everyone moved to the walls and made way for the High Queen. "Jareth!" She shouted when she spotted him.

Jareth stepped forward, crystal in hand. "You'd attack our mother?" Jaxel asked.

"I'd take on the entire Underground if I had to in order to keep her safe," Jareth stated as he stepped away from the others. "I won't let you harm her Mother!" Jareth shouted to Ta'leena.

"Fool!" The High Queen formed a large orb between both hands. "So be it then. You can die along side your human!" Just as she threw the sphere at Jareth, Sarah pushed him out of the way and covered her head with her hands. The orb hit her and exploded.

"Sarah!" Jareth screamed as he saw the explosion.

Chapter Text

The moment Ta'leena launched her attack, everyone except the Court leaders, Jaxel, Alastair, Heidi, Jareth, and Sarah fled the room. Jareth landed hard against the floor after Sarah pushed him out of the way. As he watched the smoke clear, his heart was in his throat. As he stood, he could begin to make out a blue translucent orb where his mother's attack had been aimed. In the center was the orb was Sarah, but she wasn't alone. Heidi and Jaxel were inside the orb with her, both using their own bodies to shield her.

"Sarah!" Jareth went to rush to her and stopped just outside the orb.

Jaxel sat up and looked at his brother and then back to Sarah, who was still being shielded by Heidi. "Are you ladies alright?" He asked as he helped them both sit up.

"I'm alright," Heidi answered as she brushed herself off. "Lady Sarah, are you hurt?"

Sarah looked around. "No, I'm fine. Why did you do that?"

Heidi smiled and helped her up. "I told you I owed you my life. My debt is now repaid."

Sarah smiled. "Thank you."

"Jaxel! You can drop the shield." Jareth called from outside the protective barrier. He wanted to get to Sarah so bad he almost tried to just rush through the barrier.

"That's not my magic Jareth," Jaxel told him as he studied the barrier that he was trapped inside of.

"What?" Jareth couldn't believe it. Jaxel was the only one he knew capable of making a shield like that.

"Jaxel you would betray me as well?" The High Queen demanded.

"I may not always agree with Jareth, but if Sarah is important enough to him that he would take you on, then yes, I will defy you, Mother," Jaxel replied before he turned back to the girls.

"Heidi, did you make the barrier?" Alastair asked from where he stood outside the barrier.

Heidi reached her hand towards it and pulled back as it shocked her. "No, I wouldn't even know how to make something like this."

"Sarah, did you do this?" Jareth asked.

She looked around her at the barrier and shrugged. "I honestly don't know."

"Her?" The High Queen couldn't believe he would suggest such a thing.

"How could Lady Sarah make a barrier?" Queen Arya asked as she and the other rulers stepped towards the center of the room.

"Ta'leena what were you thinking?" The Dwarf King demanded.

"Lady Sarah is under the protection of the Goblin Kingdom. For crying out loud she's your son's fiance!" Lord Navarre shouted.

"I will not allow my son to marry a human!" Ta'leena cried as she clenched her fists.

Jareth ignored them all and tried to push his hand through the barrier only to pull it away, his white glove now looking slightly burned. "Precious, I can't get to you. I need you to focus and try to lower this."

Slowly, Sarah approached the barrier where Jareth was standing. She reached out and her hand easily slipped through the barrier and Jareth immediately took her hand. "Amazing...." Jaxel and Heidi mumbled in unison as they watched.

"When did Sarah learn magic?" Alastair asked.

"How did she learn it?" Arya asked.

Ta'leena growled and glared at the human. She didn't care if she could use magic. She was still a human and she was going to die. Before they could react, she threw another attack, a larger one than before. Ta'leena didn't care who else was killed or harmed in the attack, as long as the human died.

"Ta'leena what are you doing!" Arya yelled.

"You'll kill them all!" Navarre shouted as he shielded his eyes from the explosion.

Ta'leena grinned as the room filled with smoke from the explosion. There was no way the pathetic human could have survived that, even if she could put up a barrier. "Dis be crazy." The Troll King said as he shook his head.

"Nice try Mother," Jareth called from the center of the room.

When the dust cleared Ta'leena couldn't believe what she saw. The barrier was now larger and surrounded Jareth and Alastair as well. "Impossible...."

"Sarah is protected by a force greater than myself and even greater than you," Jareth smirked as he wrapped an arm around her waist. "The Labyrinth will protect its Champion just as it protects its King and all of my subjects." He pulled Sarah close and kissed her forehead, relief spreading over him now that she was safe in his arms.

Jaxel looked around. "I think you should stop Mother. You know you can't take on the Labyrinth itself."

The High Queen glared at them. "I will bring this entire castle down if I must!"

Arya, Navarre, The Troll and Dwarf Kings, and the other Elf monarchs stepped in front of Ta'leena. "That is enough," Arya said firmly.

"The Lady Sarah may be human, but she has done nothing wrong. If Jareth wishes to marry her, then he has our blessings." Navarre added.

"Da Lady be chosen by da Labyrinth." The Troll King said. "Da be enough for me."

"I agree." The Dwarf King commented. "Jareth may be hot headed and a rebel, but the lass may be what your son needs. If she can beat the Labyrinth when our kind can not, she has my support."

"You... you can't be serious!" Ta'leena started backing up as they approached her.

Jareth's eyes were wide as he listened to the other members of the court defend his Sarah. He couldn't believe it. He smiled at Sarah and hugged her tight. She had done it again. She won the hearts of the court and even they were willing to defend her from his mother. "It's no use Mother," Jareth called to her. "Leave now and I will let this go. Leave and never come near my Sarah again. She is protected and there's nothing you can do to change it."

Ta'leena glared at her sons. "Fine! Have your little human Jareth. Do as you will." Ta'leena's voice was dripping with venom and if looks could kill, hers would have taken out an army. "Jaxel, Heidi, and Alastair." She glared at the other three Fae. "Since you three are so fond of Jareth's human, you can stay here in this hell hole with them!" She turned and stormed out of the castle.

The Court members watched her leave and then turned to Jareth. "We will see that she stays away from the Goblin Kingdom," Arya assured him.

"My thanks to all of you." Jareth bowed them all.

"I thank you as well." Sarah knelt beside Jareth. "I just hope I'm worthy of your protection and kind words."

Arya, Navarre, and the others looked at one another. Arya stepped forward and almost forgot about the barrier. "Lift your head, Sarah." Sarah looked up and Jareth helped her stand. "If you can, lower the barrier. All is safe now."

"I'm not sure I can, but I'll try," Sarah stated as she reached out and touched the barrier. Her hand passed through it but nothing else happened. She pulled her hand back and shook her head.

Jareth removed one of his gloves and took Sarah's hand. "Focus Sarah." He slowly extended their hands out together until they touched the edge of the barrier. Sarah closed her eyes and soon the barrier vanished.

Arya smiled. "You're a fast learner and Jareth will be an excellent teacher for you." The Elf Queen held her arms out to Sarah. Jareth nodded and pushed her forward gently. Sarah stepped towards the Queen and was surprised to be embraced by the Queen and even more surprised to feel the woman's lips press against her forehead. "You have my blessing, Lady Sarah of the Aboveground."

Arya stepped back and smiled. She turned and left with out another word. The others said a quick goodbye and they too left the castle. Jaxel looked Sarah over and shook his head. "You have a very special Lady Jareth. It's been what? Two centuries since the Elf Queen granted her blessing to a human?"

"At least three centuries brother," Jareth replied.

Alastair patted his cousin on the back. "So when were you going to tell me that Lady Sarah could use magic?"

"I only learned of it earlier this evening. It seems to be closely linked to her emotions, but I will work with her and teach her to control it." The Goblin King stated.

"I will happily assist if you need me to do so." Heidi offered. "I think it's safe to say that Ta'leena won't give up."

Jareth looked around at the damage his mother had caused. It could be fixed, but it wasn't something he wanted to deal with that night. "I'll see to repairs in a day or two." He said as he led the remaining Fae to the throne room. "For now Mother won't try anything, not with the rest of the court watching her. That will buy us time to prepare and come up with a plan."

"Is she really that against you marrying a human?" Sarah asked.

Jareth nodded. "I'm afraid so, but I won't let anything happen to you Precious." He said as he kissed her hand.

The others watched Jareth and Sarah in awkward silence. Clearing his throat, Alastair stepped forward. "So I guess we're going to be your guests for a while cousin." He smiled.

"Yes," Jaxel agreed. "It seems mother has exiled us all."

Sarah pulled away from Jareth and looked at all of them. "I'm sorry. This is all my fault. If I hadn't spoken out against her..."

Jareth pulled her back into his arms and stopped her apology. "Stop Sarah. You have nothing to be sorry for. If anything it is I that should be blamed. I should have protected you better so they didn't have to jump in."

"Don't worry about it," Alastair said with a grin. "Besides things are never boring here with you cousin."

Heidi shook her head at Alastair. "Sorry to impose on you again Jareth. You've already shown me more kindness than I deserved."

"We'll only stay as long as you want us to little brother," Jaxel said. "I'm sure we'll sort things out with mother in time."

Jareth sighed. "Fine. Stay here as long as needed, but none of you are allowed on the west side of the castle. I'll have goblins show you to your rooms." He called for a couple goblins and soon they took their guests to rooms on the east side of the castle.

"So what's so important about the west side of the castle?" Sarah asked when they were alone.

Jareth smirked. "That's where our rooms are." He swept her off her feet and started up the stairs with her.

Wrapping her arms around his neck she chuckled. "I can walk you know."

"True, but right now I want you as close as possible," Jareth whispered. He stopped and looked into her emerald eyes. "I thought I'd lost you."

"Jareth..." Sarah caressed his cheek and leaned her head against his.

"I don't know what I would do if I lost you." He whispered.

Sarah kissed him softly and hugged him tightly. "Let's go to my room." She whispered.

Nodding, Jareth hurried up the steps, taking two at a time. Soon he reached the door to her room and placed her back on her feet. He started to say something, but she pushed him against the wall and kissed him. Jareth's hands wasted no time wrapping around her and pulling her to him. She could feel his desire for her and she made up her mind right then on what she was going to do. Pulling away, she gazed into his eyes. "Stay with me tonight."

Jareth's answer was his lips against hers in another heated kiss. With out breaking their kiss, they managed to open the door and stumble into the room. Jareth kicked the door closed with his foot before he picked Sarah up and carried her to the bed. Sitting on the edge of the bed with Sarah on his lap, Jareth kissed her over and over as his hands roamed over her body. She moaned softly as he massaged her lower back and ass, squeezing firmly.

She pulled back, breaking the kiss and stood up. He tilted his head and watched her. She turned her back to him. "Can you give me a hand?"

Jareth stood and slowly unzipped her dress, his lips kissing down her back as zipper went lower and lower. He started to push the dress off her shoulders, but Sarah stopped him. "I'll be right back." She said as she held the dress up. "Why don't you change into your sleep clothes while I take care of something." She smiled and walked to the bathroom.

Jareth chuckled and shook his head as he watched her enter the bathroom and closed the door. He tossed a crystal up and changed into a pair of silky sleep pants. He removed his gloves and placed them on the table by the bed. Laying down, he stared at the door, waiting for Sarah to take care of what ever it was that she needed to do.

Inside the bathroom, Sarah quietly called for Flower. The little goblin instantly appeared with a big grin. "Lady needs help bathing?"

"No, no. I need you to get a couple of things for me." Sarah told her. She gave the small list of items to Flower who wasted no time retrieving them. When the goblin returned with her bag, Sarah changed into her night gown. Taking a deep breath she looked at herself in the mirror. She wasn't as skinny as the Elven Queens or even Heidi, and her breasts were small in comparison as well. The more she looked at her reflection the more she began to doubt herself.

"Lady ok?" Flower asked as she watched Sarah frown at the mirror.

"Was I really the most beautiful woman at the ball?" She asked quietly.

"Lady think Kingy no tells truth?" Flower sat on the sink and watched her Lady.

"I just don't see what he sees in me at times." Sarah sighed. "I guess I just worry that I'm not good enough. Especially with all the hassle he's gone through lately because of me. His mother is pissed and blew up the ballroom and even exiled the others. Am I worth all the trouble I've caused?"

Flower hopped down and hugged Sarah's leg. "Lady important to us all. We loves Lady and so does Kingy. Kingy no lie. Mean Queenie jealous of Lady. She no tries to be nice. She just want everyone to do as she say. Lady takes care of us and all she meet. That why Lady will makes greatest Queenie."

Sarah knelt and hugged the little goblin. "Thanks, Flower."

In the other room, Jareth was beginning to worry what was taking Sarah so long. Just as he was about to get up to check on her, the door opened and Sarah finally stepped out of the bathroom. Jareth's eyes traveled up and down her body as she walked over to him. She was in a thin, light blue, spaghetti strap, night gown that came just below her knees. Her hands were behind her back and her hair was pulled back in a loose pony tail. She gave him a sweet smile as she came to stand beside the bed.

"I was beginning to worry Precious," Jareth said as he reached out to take her hand. "Is everything alright?"

"Yea." She said as she sat on the edge of the bed. "I just had to wait for Flower. I sent her to get a couple things for me."

"Ah," Jareth nodded. He hadn't even wondered about the nightgown, but after she mentioned sending the goblin to get things, he remembered that Sarah's bags were still at the winter house. "Was she able to get everything you needed?"

"Yeah, she got everything." Sarah leaned closer and brushed his blonde hair from his face. "Now I have a surprise for you."

"For me?" Jareth smirked. "Precious there's no need for you to give me anything."

"I know, but I want to," Sarah replied as she kissed the tip of his nose. "Lay on your stomach."

He raised an eyebrow at her but did as she asked. Sarah opened the bottle of lotion that she had been keeping behind her back and poured a small amount into her hand. She inhaled the scent and shook her head. She wasn't fond of it, but she knew Jareth would love it. After warming it up in her hands a bit, Sarah rubbed the lotion all over his back, kneading and massaging his muscles as she went. Jareth moaned softly as she worked the muscles of his shoulders. "Oh, Sarah...."

Grinning, she leaned over him. "Like that?"

"It feels amazing." He smiled. "I can't remember the last time I had a good massage."

"Well you've given me a couple massages, so I thought I'd return the favor," Sarah explained as she continued rubbing his back.

Jareth smiled as the scent of the lotion reached his nose. "Your choice of lotion is pleasing but I'm a tad confused."

"What's wrong?" She asked as she rubbed his neck.

"You said you don't eat peaches." Jareth said before moaning from her pressing her elbow into his back.

"I don't, but I know you like them." She responded.

"That's where I'm confused, Precious." Jareth stated. "Shouldn't I be covering you with peaches so that I can devour you?" He smirked at her, his eyes dark with lust.

Sarah turned her head, blushing a bit. "None of that. Not tonight." She went back to focusing on massaging his back and tried not to let her nerves stop her plan. Slowly she worked her way down his back and ran her hands over his ass.

Jareth laid there letting her explore slowly. He wasn't sure what all she had planned for the night, but he was enjoying it immensely so far. She took his arms one at a time and rubbed them from shoulder to finger, being sure to be extra gentle with his bare hands. When she was done with everything she could reach, Sarah laid beside him. "Why don't you take your pants off and lay on your back?"

Jareth sat up and studied her. "Sarah I'm not expecting you to do thing kind of things I did to you. You don't have to go any further than a massage."

She squeezed his hand and nodded. "I know. I still want to do this though." She kissed him softly. "I'll need your help though." She admitted shyly.

"Just say the word and I'll do it." He whispered as he kissed from her cheek to her ear. "I am your slave." He whispered before kissing back to her lips.

Sarah kissed him hard and bit his lip gently. "Teach me."

"What do you wish to learn?" Jareth asked as his hands tangled themselves in her hair and removed the tie that was holding it in the loose pony tail.

"I'm not really sure what to do. I mean I know what to do, I just don't know exactly how to go about it. I've never done this before, and I don't want to screw it up." She rambled on nervously.

Jareth chuckled softly and kissed her nose. "Alright. I'll help, but before I give you any kind of instruction I want you to be comfortable. I'm going to remove my pants and lay here. I want you to touch, kiss, and explore to your heart's content. I'll let you know if you do something I don't like and guide you when needed. Alright?"

Sarah nodded and stood and watched him push his pants and boxers down. They were quickly removed and tossed on the floor. As Jareth laid back, Sarah's eyes wandered up and down his body. She couldn't help but stare at him. He was gorgeous from head to toe. His pants may not have done anything to hide his size, they still didn't do him justice. Slowly she ran her hands up his legs, rubbing every inch she could.

Jareth watched her with great interest. Every touch of her hand was like a feather dancing across his skin. She left a warm tingly sensation all over his skin and he grabbed the sheets in his hands to help restrain himself from touching her. If she wanted to do this, he would let her do it. The fact that she was shy and nervous about touching him made her even more adorable in his eyes. Jareth had been with many women in his life and Sarah wasn't even the first virgin he had taken to bed, but she was the most important. He would let her go at her pace, which he could already tell was going to be sweet torture for him.

As he hands rubbed his thighs, Sarah laid her head against his chest and placed a soft kiss over his heart. Taking a deep breath, she cautiously moved her hand over his erection and rubbed it lightly. Jareth closed his eyes and moaned. Gaining confidence from his reaction she wrapped her hand around his already hard member and stroked slowly. His breathing quickened to match the gradually increasing pace of her hand. After a moment he placed his hand over hers and stilled her moment.

She looked up at him worried she had done something wrong. "Did I hurt you?"

"No, no, just the opposite dearest. It was feeling too good." He opened his eyes and smiled. "No need to rush it. Long, slow, strokes like this." He used his hand to guide hers and showed her the perfect rhythm in which to stroke him. "Just like that...." He moaned softly. "Don't be afraid to squeeze it, a little pressure won't hurt."

Sarah nodded and continued stroking him just as he had shown her and added more and more pressure with each stroke. Soon a sticky liquid oozed from the tip and she ran her hand over the tip, wetting her hand and using it as a lubricant. Jareth bucked his hips against her hand as she rubbed just the head over and over. "Sarah...." her name came through gritted teeth as he tried to keep from losing control. When she rubbed her other hand under his penis and began to massage his balls, Jareth grabbed her head and pulled her up and covered her lips with his. He kissed her fiercely and his tongue pushed against her lips, seeking entrance.

Sarah's tongue met his in a passionate duel as her hand continued to stroke Jareth closer and closer to his peak. Jareth's hand gripped her hair lightly as he kissed her. He could feel his climax drawing closer and he was fighting the urge to flip her on her back and slam into her. He broke the kiss and laid his head back against the pillow, his back arching and hips bucking against her hand. "Sarah...." he moaned her name as she brought him to the edge.

He grabbed her arm to stop her strokes as he came, his semen shooting up his stomach and chest. Sarah stopped moving and watched him as he bucked against her three more times before he stopped moving and laid there panting. Her hand was wet and sticky from his cum and she held it just above his throbbing penis. "Was.... was that good?" She asked timidly. "I didn't mess up?"

Jareth laughed and opened his eyes to look at her. "Oh Precious, that was amazing. You made me feel wonderful." He reached out and caressed her cheek. "You really didn't have to do this, but I thank you for it." Sitting up carefully, he kissed her softly. "Thank you, my love. I haven't felt this incredible in a long time."

Sarah smiled. "I'm glad." She looked at her hand and the large stream of white liquid that was running down his chest. "I guess I should get something to clean you up with."

"No need." Jareth tossed a crystal up and instantly both he and her hand were completely clean. He fell back on the bed and held his arm out in invitation. Sarah laid next to him and snuggled against him, her head resting on his chest. As his breathing began to return to normal, Jareth sighed contently and pulled her closer against him. "May I ask you something, Sarah?"

"Sure." She replied as her hand drew lazy circles on his chest.

"What made you want to do this for me? I'm not complaining mind you."

Sarah shrugged. "I kinda wanted to return the favor after you pleasured me that day, but I... well I was nervous. I wasn't sure exactly what to do to give you the same amount of pleasure you gave me and I felt silly asking you to show me. I was going to wait, but well after what happened tonight I didn't want to wait."

"Sarah please don't think that you caused any of what happened tonight or that you had to do this or anything else to repay me. The events of tonight were my mother's doing and no one else's. I knew she wasn't going to be reasonable and I expected her to try something." Jareth informed her before he kissed her temple. "Don't think that I want or expect you to do this or anything else. If you're not comfortable then don't do it."

"I know." She kissed his cheek. "But after your comment about thinking you had lost me..." She hugged him tightly. "I just didn't want to take a chance of something happening and not getting to do at least this for you." She sat up to look him in the eyes. "I love you and I wanted to show you."

Jareth's eyes began to get a little glossy at her words and he shook his head, a smile on his face. "Oh, Sarah. Knowing you love me is more than enough. You don't need to do anything to prove your love to me." He kissed her tenderly. "I love you too and I always will." He covered her lips once more and rolled them onto their sides. Wrapping his arms and legs around her, Jareth covered her face with kisses as he whispered words of love and devotion to her.

The spent the rest of the night wrapped in each other's arms, talking, laughing and kissing until the early morning. They both dozed off just before sun up, neither wanting the morning to come for they both knew dawn would bring the end of Sarah's holiday and Jareth would have to return her to the Aboveground.

Chapter Text

It was midday when Sarah and Jareth woke and climbed out of bed. Neither wanted to get up and face what they both knew would be a difficult day. It was the first day of the New Year and Sarah's winter break was over. Jareth would have to return her to her Grandmother's house before too late so that she was there when her parents arrived to pick up her and her brother. Jareth watched her from the bed as she went through her bags, which he had retrieved from the winter house. She gathered clothes to put on and went to the bathroom to change.

With a heavy sigh, Jareth tossed a crystal up and dressed in his normal attire. Never had he wanted to reorder time more than he did at that moment. He wanted to turn time back to the beginning of the week and spend it with her all over again. When Sarah returned from the bathroom, she was dressed in a light blue sweater and jeans. Jareth stood and walked over to her. Cupping her cheek, he kissed her forehead. "Do you have any idea how hard this is for me?"

She gave him a gentle kiss. "Don't be so dramatic. I'm just going home for a while. It's not like you're not going to see me again. Knowing you, you'll be at my bedroom window later tonight."

He chuckled. "You know me so well Sarah." He wrapped her in his warm embrace and kissed her neck. "I suppose we should eat and spend a little time with our guests before I return you to your Grandmother."

Sarah pulled back to look him in the eyes. "See it won't be so bad. You have company so you'll be busy entertaining them."

"You haven't changed me that much dearest. I may bog them yet."

Shaking her head, she took him by the hand and together they went to the dining hall where they found Jaxel, Alastair, Heidi and two people that Sarah didn't recognize. Seeing Sarah enter the room, Jaxel and Alastair stood to greet her. "Hello, Lady Sarah." Jaxel grinned.

"Lady Sarah I hope you slept well," Alastair said as he bowed.

"Afternoon Lady Sarah." Heidi smiled as she watched Jareth pull the chair out for her.

Sarah smiled at them all and sat down. "Hello everyone."

Jareth looked at the table and sighed seeing he had more guests. "Oliver, when did you arrive?"

The Fae sitting on the other side of Alastair smiled. "Last night, we were late and arrived to find the ballroom a mess and your subjects tried to send us away."

"Too bad they failed," Alastair muttered.

"Oh, hush, Al," Oliver told his older brother as he jabbed him in the ribs. "Cousin Jareth would have been greatly disappointed if I left without even saying hello."

Jareth pinched the bridge of his nose. Why must all his family be so bothersome? "Oliver, allow me to introduce the Lady Sarah, the champion of the Labyrinth," Jareth stated as he tried to think of something other than bogging his cousins. "Sarah this is Oliver, my cousin, and Alastair's young brother."

"Hello, Oliver." She smiled. If Jareth hadn't told her that he was Alastair's younger brother, she never would have known it. Unlike Jareth and Jaxel, there was no resemblance between the two brothers. Oliver was larger and his hair was jet black, unlike the others who had light brown or blonde hair.

"The Lady Sarah?" Oliver's eyes lit up. "This is the one that beat you cousin?"

Sighing, Jareth nodded. "Yes, Sarah defeated my Labyrinth in 13 hours. She is my champion and honored guest."

"Sadly Sarah is leaving us today though," Alastair added.

"Oh no, I only just arrived and you're leaving?" Oliver pouted.

"I have to go home. My winter break is over, but I'll be back to visit when I can." Sarah told him.

"Yes, Sarah isn't leaving us forever." Jareth smiled as he took her hand as he sat beside her. He gave it a quick kiss before releasing it. "Now Oliver who is this you've brought to my home?"

"Oh how silly of me. Where are my manners?" He shook his head and then looked to the dark-skinned man in purple that was seated beside him. "This amazing creature is Prince Alucard of the Purple Dragon clan."

"Alucard?" Jareth smirked. "My you've grown. Last time I saw you, you were just a hatchling. Welcome to the Goblin Kingdom."

"Hatchling?" Sarah looked to Jareth wanting to make sure she was hearing them correctly. "Are you saying…"

Laughing lightly, Jareth nodded. "Yes Precious, Prince Alucard is a dragon. Not all of them are like the poor fellow in the Labyrinth."

Alucard bowed his head. "I'm honored to be here King Jareth and it is an honor to meet you, Lady Sarah. Tales of your adventure have reached even the ears of my people in the Outlands. It takes a remarkable person to defeat the challenge of the Labyrinth. I must say the stories never mentioned your beauty though."

Sarah ducked her head, blushing slightly from the compliments. "I had no idea I was so well known here in the Underground."

"It's not every day someone beats the Labyrinth Precious," Jareth told her with a smile. He summoned a crystal and handed it to her. "Think of what you'd like to eat and then toss the crystal up."

Nodding, she took the crystal, thought a moment and then tossed it up. It popped over her and a plate with a salad, baked chicken, and mandarin oranges appeared before her. She smiled as she thought how easy it was to prepare a meal was with magic. "So Sarah have you used anymore magic?" Heidi asked her after plates appeared in front of everyone.

"Not since the barrier," Sarah replied.

"Well other than just now," Jareth smirked.

"What?" Sarah stared at him.

"That crystal was just a crystal." He told her. "You conjured the food, love." He leaned over and kissed her cheek. "You thought that was my magic, didn't you?"

She nodded. "Am I going to have to worry about random magic happening when I go home?"

"I doubt it unless you get emotional. Being away from the Labyrinth will make it harder to use its magic, but to be safe I'll give you a charm that should prevent it unless its an emergency." Jareth explained.

"Wait isn't she a human?" Oliver questioned.

"Sarah is still human, but as the Champion, the Labyrinth has given her access to its magic it seems. We only learned of this yesterday." Jareth informed him. "I will be teaching her to control and use her magic. But only when she is here. Too many things could go wrong with her using magic Aboveground."

"And I be der ta help if dat be de case." A voice said from behind them.

They turned to see Vol'sun coming in the door with Sarah's goblins close behind. "Vol'sun." She smiled as she stood to greet him. She surprised everyone but Jareth when she walked over and hugged the large troll. "Its good to see you again."

"Ya be missin' me lil lady?" the troll asked with a grin.

"Of course," Sarah replied. "I enjoy hearing your stories. I was wondering where you were since you didn't need to protect me while I was here with Jareth."

Vol'sun nodded. "I be tending ta some tings." He told her. "I xpect I be needed to watch over yer Lady when she go home?" He asked Jareth.

Jareth nodded as he stood to join Sarah. "I would greatly appreciate it if you continued to keep her safe, especially in light of recent events."

Vol'sun nodded. "I be hearin' da Queen be up ta no good."

Alastair chuckled at the shocked looks on his brother and Heidi's faces. "Lady Sarah has all kinds looking out for her. Auntie won't be able to get to her."

Jaxel's face was tense as he watched the troll. The trolls had only recently joined the court and there was still bad blood between them and the Fae. "Brother are you certain you can leave Lady Sarah's life in the hands of this…troll?"

Jareth sighed. "Jaxel, Vol'sun has been a valued member of my Kingdom long before his people joined the High Court. He has taught me a great many things and more than proven his loyalty to me and my Kingdom. Don't take this the wrong way, but I trust him to protect Sarah more than any other person in this room other than myself of course." He took Sarah's hand and pulled her into his arms. "He's kept her safe and hidden from mother so far. I have no doubt that he will continue to do so. Knowing he is watching over my beloved is the main reason I'm allowing her to return home without a full honor guard following her at all times."

Sarah pulled out of his embrace. "Full honor guard? Really Jareth, isn't that a bit much?"

"Nothing is too much if it ensures your safety, Precious." He caressed her cheek and gaze into her eyes.

"Would you like us to eat our lunches elsewhere cousin?" Alastair teased.

Blushing, Sarah returned to her seat and continued eating. They all chatted quietly over lunch and Oliver, Heidi, and Jaxel asked Sarah question after question, all eager to learn more about the human that had defeated the Labyrinth and tamed the wild Goblin King. After lunch, Sarah said her goodbyes and prepared to return to the Aboveground. Jareth led her back to her room upstairs to collect her things leaving the others in the dining hall. "Why didn't Jareth just summon her things to them?" Oliver asked. "I mean surely it would have saved time."

"Idoit," Alastair muttered as he shook his head.

"I'm sure Jareth wanted a few minutes alone with Sarah before he takes her home," Heidi stated.

"Oh." Oliver nodded and then tilted his head. "Is there something going on between them?" The others all groaned at his lack of observational skills.

Up in Sarah's room, Jareth was sitting on the couch by the fire with his hand held out in invitation to her. "I thought we were leaving?" Sarah questioned as she took his hand and sat beside him.

"In a little bit. I wanted a few more minutes alone with you." He said sadly as he wrapped his arms around her. He nuzzled her neck and inhaled her scent. "Have you decided what you intend to tell your Grandmother?" He asked before kissing her neck.

"I don't want to hide anything from Nanny. I want to tell her that we're dating." She answered.

"Very well. And the rest of your family?" His hands were rubbing up and down her back.

"Not yet. I want to slowly get them introduced to the idea of me dating and to you." She told him as her hands played with his hair. "I want you to see Toby first, without Daddy and Irene around. He still remembers you and I don't want him blurting out something about you being the Goblin King in front of our parents."

He chuckled. "I look forward to seeing young Toby again. He was a lively little chap." He kissed down her neck and along her jaw. "Just tell me when and I shall be there." He covered her lips with his and kissed her tenderly at first, but soon the kiss became deeper and filled with passion. When he reluctantly pulled away, they were both out of breath.

Sarah caressed his cheek as she leaned her forehead against his. "We should get going before we lose control. I don't want to have to explain to Irene why I wasn't at Nanny's."

Smirking, Jareth kissed her nose. "You could always tell her you were wrapped safely in the arms of an incredibly handsome man who loves you dearly."

"Sure and then get lectured by her about having sex before marriage. No thank you." Sarah chuckled.

He kissed her softly on the lips and stood. "Very well Sarah. I shall return you to your Grandmother's." He held his hand out to her and once she took it, he pulled her to her feet and wrapped his arms around her. "Close your eyes."

Sarah closed her eyes and she felt the shift in the air as he transported them back to the Aboveground. Soon she felt herself sitting and heard the engine of a car. When she opened her eyes, Jareth was in the driver's seat, glamoured to look as he had a week earlier, and they were on the side road leading into town. She stared out the window and watched the scenery pass by as the silver car drove towards her Grandmother's house. For the first time since leaving home, Sarah debated not returning to her parent's. The thought ran through her mind that she could go see her Nanny, explain things to her and Toby and return to the castle with Jareth. She knew he wouldn't complain. She glanced at him and sighed.

"Everything alright Precious?" Jareth asked as he reached over and took her hand in his.

"Yea, I'm just dreading dealing with Irene again," Sarah answered.

"Well, at least she won't blow up the room like my mother did," Jareth said trying to lighten the mood a bit. "If you can survive my mother, then your stepmother should be a piece of cake." He glanced at her with a smirk on his face.

She smiled and shook her head at the use of her phrase. "Didn't you learn from me that nothing good happens when you say it's a piece of cake?"

"Perhaps, but then things always work out in the end." He lifted her hand to his lips and kissed it. "It will all work out Sarah. You'll see."

Soon Jareth parked the car in the driveway and hurried out to rush around and help Sarah out of the car. He grabbed her bag from the backseat and held her hand as they walked up to the front door. Taking a deep breath, Sarah rang the doorbell and waited for her Grandmother to appear. A moment later she opened the door and greeted them with a large smile. "Sarah, welcome back!" She hugged her granddaughter. "How was your trip?"

"It was magical," Sarah smirked as she looked over at Jareth. "It ended all too soon though."

"Vacations always end too soon." Her grandmother commented as she pushed Sarah in. She turned to Jareth. "Good to see you again Jareth. I'm glad to see you're not the type to simply drop her off and leave."

"Oh heavens no." Jareth sounded hurt that she would even think such a thing. "I've enjoyed every moment you've allowed me to have Sarah and I'm in no hurry for it to end. I would never simply drop and run." He followed the ladies in the house, placed her bags down, and closed the door behind him.

Sarah hung up her coat and took Jareth's and did the same with it before taking his hand and following her grandmother to the living room. "Well, I'm glad you two had fun." Her Grandmother smiled as she noticed them holding hands. "So what all did you do?"

"Well, Jareth took me to his winter home in the mountains. We went for walks in the snow, made snowmen, had snowball fights, and then warmed ourselves by the fire with hot chocolate." Sarah told her as she sat on the couch.

Jareth chuckled remembering it all as he sat beside Sarah, their hands still interlaced. "Sarah even talked me into playing hide and seek with the goblins."

"Goblins?" her grandmother questioned.

"He means the neighborhood children," Sarah said quickly trying to cover his slip up. "They were running around being silly and I jokingly called them goblins."

"I see." Her grandmother said with a look of suspicion. Sarah had a feeling her grandmother didn't believe her, but she had no idea why.

Jareth pulled Sarah's hand to his lap and patted it with his other hand. "Anyway, I believe there's something you wished to tell your grandmother. Right Precious?"

Sarah nodded. "Nanny, well... Jareth and I are dating." She looked from her grandmother to Jareth who was grinning at her.

"About damn time." Her grandmother replied. "If you two kept being so lovey-dovey and still insisted you were just friends I was tempted to beat you both."

"Nanny!" Sarah couldn't believe what she was hearing.

Jareth laughed. "It's alright Sarah. I believe your grandmother was quite aware of my feelings after our first meeting." He released Sarah's hand and stood. He knelt by her grandmother. "I had been wanting to court dear Sarah for a while, but I wasn't going to rush her. She finally gave me her permission to court her. As the only member of her family that she's allowed me to meet, I hope you'll give us your blessing. It would mean a great deal to me knowing that you approve and I'm certain Sarah would be thrilled as well." He bowed his head to her. "So I ask you, please, grant us your blessing."

"Jareth..." Sarah covered her mouth as she fought back tears. She knew he was serious about wanting to be with her, but she never expected him to kneel to her grandmother and beg for her blessing. Seeing the mighty Goblin King on his knees like that made her heart flutter. If she hadn't already admitted loving him she would have done so then.

Sarah's grandmother eyed the man before her. "You're a formal one aren't you?" She smirked as she studied him. "You would think you're asking to carry her off and marry her the way you're pleading for my blessing." She sighed. "I know my granddaughter cares deeply for you and I'd be a fool to try and stop her from seeing you. Just know this, if you harm her, I will hunt you down. Nowhere on Earth or any other realm will be safe for you."

"Then I have your blessing?" Jareth asked as he raised his eyes to look at the older woman.

"Yes, you have my blessing and my word that I won't tell a soul about you. I'm sure Sarah wants to introduce you to Robert and Irene when she's ready."

Sarah nodded. "Yeah, I want to slowly get daddy used to the idea of me dating."

Jareth took the woman's hand and kissed it. "Thank you for once again entrusting your granddaughter to me."

"Enough of your silver tongue. Save it for Sarah. I'm sure you'll need the sweet talk when you butt heads." Sarah's grandmother chuckled.

Jareth stood and returned to Sarah's side. "I'm sure we'll butt heads now and then, but it will be worth it to have her by my side."

Sarah's grandmother stood and headed for the kitchen. "I have something for you." She called over her shoulder before disappearing into the other room.

Sarah and Jareth looked at one another and shrugged. "Maybe she made Christmas cookies," Sarah suggested.

A moment later, Sarah's grandmother returned carrying an iron rack filled with sweets. There were cookies, cupcakes, brownies, and fudge. "Sarah tells me you have a sweet tooth. Help yourself. Lord knows I shouldn't be eating any of it." She grinned as she placed the rack on the table.

"Nanny, when did you make all of this?" Sarah asked as she eyed the sweets.

"Yesterday. Toby helped as well." She answered.

Jareth cautiously grabbed a cupcake. He was very aware of the fact that the rack was made of iron. All of the food was wrapped in paper or sitting on plastic trays so no chance of any getting on the food, but he wondered if the use of the iron rack had been deliberate. He eyed Sarah's grandmother as he unwrapped the cupcake. "Sarah I shall have to go on a diet for the rest of the year if you and your family keep spoiling me like this."

Sarah giggled. "Like you would actually get fat. I don't think you have any fat on your body."

"I will after eating all these sweets. Cookies from you, several delicious meals you made for me, now all of this. If I didn't know better I'd think you wanted to fatten me up." Jareth teased.

Chuckling, Sarah used her finger to steal a bit of frosting from his cupcake. "Oh, hush. You love it and you know it." She licked the icing from her finger and smirked at him.

Jareth shook his head and looked to her grandmother. "Could I trouble you for a glass of milk?"

"Sure." She stood and headed for the kitchen.

As soon as she was out of the room, Jareth turned to Sarah. "Vixen. I'm trying to behave." He said as he pulled her on his lap. "Keep teasing and I may carry you off again."

"As tempting as that idea is, you know I have to go home." She wrapped her arms around his neck. "And I'll behave." She gave him a quick kiss and leaned her forehead against his.

"I should go soon. I know you don't wish your parents to see me yet." Jareth said softly.

Nodding, Sarah stood and held her hand out to him. "I'll tell Nanny you had to leave."

Jareth stood and pulled her into a tight embrace. "I'll see you later tonight Precious." He kissed her forehead and then tossed a crystal at the rack making it vanish. "I'll send the rack back in a day or two." He informed her.

She nodded. "You should probably drive the car away just in case."

"Very well Precious."

Sarah followed him to the door and helped him with his jacket. As he went to open the door, Sarah's grandmother returned. "Leaving already?"

Turning back, Jareth nodded. "Sadly I have to be off. Duty calls and the longer I'm here the harder it is to leave sweet Sarah."

"Well be careful going home. It was a pleasure to see you again." The older woman said as she took the glass of milk and went into the living room.

When she was out of sight Jareth and Sarah stepped outside. "I'll walk you to the car," Sarah said.

"No, you don't have your coat, Precious. I'll be fine." He cupped her chin with his gloved hand. "I'll see you soon love." He kissed her softly as he held her tight. "I love you." He whispered before he kissed her again tenderly. Pulling away he turned and headed to the car. Sarah waved as he got in and then headed back inside.

Sarah found her grandmother sitting in the living room drinking the glass of milk. "So, when are you going to see him again?"

Shrugging, Sarah sat across from her grandmother. "Soon I hope."

Her grandmother nodded. "I see he took the treats, rack and all."

"He promised to have the rack and trays back to you in a couple days," Sarah informed her.

"That's fine. I'm just surprised he took the rack, especially since it is made of iron." The older woman smirked.

"Iron?!" Sarah tried not to panic. "Uhh... what does that have to do with anything?" Sarah rubbed her arm nervously.

"Oh its, just I don't want your boyfriend thinking I was trying to kill him." Her grandmother replied as she gulped down the last of the milk. "I'm sure he was well aware that it was iron. I simply wanted to use it as a warning."

"What kind of warning?"

"That I'm not afraid of his kind and I know just how to deal with them if needed." She stood and headed for the kitchen. "I believe his majesty got the message." She said as she walked away.

Sarah sat a moment processing what her grandmother had just said. "Nanny!" Sarah called as she hurried after her.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

When Jareth returned to the castle, he found Alastair and Heidi sitting in the throne room by the window. "Ah cousin, you've returned." Alastair greeted Jareth with a grin. "Lady Sarah is at home I take it?"

"She's at her grandmother's house at the moment. She and young Toby will be going home from there." Jareth answered as he flopped onto his throne.

"Who's Toby?" Heidi asked.

"I believe that would be the child Lady Sarah wished away. Am I correct brother?" Jaxel asked as he walked in the room.

Jareth nodded and summoned a crystal to his hand. "Correct. Young Toby is Sarah's baby brother. He's a charming child, full of energy and at one time I thought of naming him my heir. That was before I realized that I needed Sarah in my life."

Jareth smiled as he gazed into the crystal. Jaxel walked over to see what he was up to and shook his head. "Really Jareth? You just left her and now you're spying on her?"

Heidi chuckled. "Missing her already Jareth?"

"Of course he is," Alastair smirked. "I'm sure he'll slowly return to his rude, cranky, cantankerous self the longer he goes without her."

"Gods, please tell me Lady Sarah is returning soon." Jaxel groaned. "I don't want to suffer through watching him be a lovesick fool before going into a rage for no reason."

"I could bog you now if you'd prefer brother-mine." Jareth glared at his sibling.

"Ughhh why do you keep that horrid place around Jareth?" Heidi asked.

"It's a good place to throw those I wish to be rid of. The threat alone helps keep the goblins in line. Also, there are certain plants used for various potions that only grow by the bog. I have several alchemists that come by from time to time and pay to be allowed to gather the plants." Jareth explained.

"What kind of potions?" Jaxel questioned.

"I didn't ask," Jareth replied. "I only let them take a small amount at a time. The rest is stored in my private vault to be given to someone who can determine the true value of them." Jareth tossed the crystal up and it vanished. Standing, he walked to the door. "I'll be in my study if you need me."

The others watched him leave and Jaxel shook his head. "He's not pleased that we're here."

"Of course not," Alastair commented. "Jareth has always been a very solitary and independent man. He prefers to be alone. That's part of why he doesn't mind being the ruler of this Kingdom. He's left to do as he wishes most of the time."

"It seems the only person he wants near him is Lady Sarah," Heidi stated.

Alastair nodded. "My cousin is madly in love and he doesn't know what to do with himself when she's not around. After 3 years of not being able to see her, I believe he's become slightly addicted to her presence."

"That can't be good," Jaxel said as he glanced out the window. "What if she changes her mind?"

"She won't." Heidi smiled. "She loves him just as much. I can see it in her eyes. She said she had to finish her schooling, but as soon as she's done I'm sure she'll be here to stay." Heidi looked out the window at the clouds and sighed. "I envy her."

"You? Envy a human?" Jaxel nearly fell over from shock.

Heidi smiled sadly. "Yes, I envy her. She has someone that loves her as much if not more than she loves him. I hope I find someone one day that will treat me at least half, as well as Jareth, treats Sarah."

Alastair watched her quietly and Jaxel simply nodded. "Perhaps one day we all shall find love and if we're lucky it will be as wonderful as the love between Lady Sarah and my brother.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

Sarah wasn't able to talk to her grandmother about Jareth as Toby rushed in the back door as she chased the older woman to the kitchen. He nearly tackled his sister to the ground when he saw she was back. While he was extremely upset that her friend left before he got to meet him, he soon forgave her when she pulled several presents from her bag for him.

Jareth insisted on being allowed to spoil Toby a little. "A way of making a good impression on the lad." He had told her as he placed the gifts in her bag. Sarah had watched as Toby opened the gifts and simply shook her head. Jareth had given him all the Back to the Future toys he could ever want. She knew Toby wanted most of them, others she hadn't even seen before and wondered if they were even available in stores.

Almost 2 hours after Jareth left, Sarah's parents arrived to get her and Toby. Irene made a big fuss about hurrying home. She claimed she had a migraine, but Sarah was certain she had a hangover. Robert helped Sarah load the car while Irene used the restroom and freshened up a bit.

"So how was your trip?" Robert asked his daughter as she handed him bags to load into the trunk.

"It was a lot of fun." She smiled. "Its always a blast staying with Nanny."

"How's your friend?"

"What friend?" Sarah questioned.

"The one that gave you that necklace, and I'm guessing the new bracelet too," Robert replied as he pointed to her wrist.

Sarah looked to see the silver chain around her wrist was hanging over her jacket sleeve, the little owl charm dangling in the frigid air. "Oh, yeah he gave me this." She held her arm close to her chest and ran her fingers over the owl. Jareth had given it to her during lunch. He said the charm would prevent her from accidentally using magic.

"So am I going to get to meet your fella?" Robert inquired, pulling Sarah from her thoughts.

Looking up, she nodded. "Soon. He promised to visit soon so I can introduce you to him."

"Am I meeting a friend or is this someone I should sit down and have a long talk with about his intentions towards my daughter?" Robert teased.

Sarah didn't catch his smirk and didn't realize he was teasing her. "I'm sure he'll want to have a long talk with you and his intentions are honorable."

"Wait, so he is your boyfriend?" Robert nearly fell over.

Sarah nodded. "Yea, we're dating, but don't tell Irene. I don't want a lecture from her."

Robert hugged Sarah and kissed her forehead. "I won't say a word, but she'll have to know sooner or later."

"I know Daddy, but I want you and Toby to meet Jareth before that. Then I'll let him sweet talk her."

Robert chuckled. "So he's a sweet talker, oh lord..." He paused. "Do we have to have the talk?"

"Daddy!" Sarah turned her head embarrassed.

"I know it's usually your mother's job to do it, but well... if needed I can tell you about the birds and the bees."

"It's fine daddy. I did take sex ed in school. I know how it works and what not to do. Also, Jareth isn't that kind of guy so you have nothing to worry about." Sarah explained.

Robert sighed in relief and wiped his brow. "That's good to know. I was worried for a minute that he might have stolen your first kiss."

Robert didn't see her turn red as he headed back inside for more bags. Sarah's finger brushed over her lips as she thought about Jareth's kisses. He hadn't been her first, but he was certainly the best. She smiled and followed her father inside.

Once all the bags were loaded into the car and Sarah and Toby said their goodbyes to their grandmother, everyone climbed into the car and headed home.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

Jareth sat in his study, crystal in hand, and watched Sarah and Toby. They were in the backseat of her father's car and Sarah was entertaining him with a book. Jareth smiled as he watched and he was once more in awe at her natural talent with children. She was going to be an extraordinary mother one day. When a knock on his door, interrupted his thoughts, Jareth sighed and tossed the crystal up, making it vanish. "Enter." He called in a very annoyed tone.

The door opened and Prince Alucard stepped in. "Apologies Highness. I hope I'm not interrupting anything."

"No, no. Come on in and have a seat, my friend." Jareth motioned to the chair across from his.

Alucard nodded and sat across from the Goblin King. "While young Oliver wished me to come with him last night to speak to your mother, I actually came here to warn you."

"Warn me? About what?" Jareth asked.

"While its true my people don't interact with any of the High Court often, I've heard rumors that an emissary of the High Queen went to see the Black Dragon flight and left with one of their best assassins," Alucard explained.

"What?" Jareth's eyes were wide. "Mother has enlisted the services of a black dragon assassin?"

"It seems that way. I do not know for what purpose, but given all that has been going on, I felt you should be warned. You've always been an ally to my people and we cannot thank you enough for all the aid you provided us over the years. And taking my uncle to your Labyrinth so that he didn't have to be killed… well, I'm eternally in your debt for that." The Prince aid as he bowed his head.

"No thanks are necessary. I only hope that if I were ever in need I can count on the same kindness from your people and others that I consider my allies." Jareth stated as he stood. "I thank you for warning me about my mother. I don't know what she's up to now, but it can't be good."

"If there's anything else I can do all you need do is ask," Alucard told the King as he stood.

"You've done plenty, my friend. I just ask that you let me know if you hear anything else about my mother's schemes." Jareth smiled and patted him on the back. "She doesn't know when to quit, but I make sure to stay several steps ahead of her."

Alucard nodded. "I shall keep you privy to anything we hear. Now I should get back before Oliver misses me. He seems to panic when I'm gone for long periods of time. I don't quite understand it."

Jareth smirked and shook his head. "Well my cousin always did prefer the company of men and he seems to favor you. If he offers you a pomegranate, don't accept it." When the Prince gave him a confused look Jareth continued. "It's a Fae thing. Part of our courtship rituals. An enchanted fruit is given to your intended. The fruit is that of the Fae's choice. I prefer peaches, but I hear my cousin uses pomegranates."

"Ah, I see." Alucard nodded. "Thanks for the warning. Goodnight majesty."

"Goodnight Alucard," Jareth called after the purple dragon as he exited the study.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

When they arrived, Irene carried the sleeping Toby in and put him to bed while Sarah and Robert unloaded the car. When everything was inside, Sarah gave her father a quick kiss and headed up her room. She told him she was going to bed early as she was exhausted. The truth was she had spotted a certain owl by her window and she wanted to hurry up to see him.

Once she was in her room, she closed and locked the door and dashed to the window. As soon as she opened it the barn owl flew in and changed. Sarah didn't even have time to turn around before his arms were around her, pulling her close against him. "Hello, Precious." He purred in her ear.

Leaning back against him, she smiled. "Hi, Jareth."

"I've missed you so much." He whispered as he kissed her neck.

"Its only been a few hours." She chuckled.

"Felt like a lot longer to me." He said as he turned her to face him. "What have you done to me you cruel, precious thing?" He asked, but obviously wasn't expecting an answer for he covered her lips with his before she could answer. Wrapping his arms around her waist, he held her tight as he caressed her lips with his own. Sarah's arms soon found themselves around his neck, her fingers entangled in his blonde locks.

When he pulled away, they were both out of breath. They gazed into each other's eyes and Sarah had to cover her mouth to keep from being too loud when he swept her off her feet and spun around with her in his arms. "What's gotten into you?" she asked with a giant grin.

Smiling like a kid in a candy shop, Jareth chuckled and sat on the bed with her on his lap. "I never thought I could feel this happy. I know I can't carry you off again, but knowing you're mine and I'm yours fills me with so much joy I can't contain it." He kissed her again and ran his hands up and down her back. "I love you my precious Sarah." He whispered as he leaned his forehead against hers.

"I love you too," Sarah replied as she touched his face gingerly. "As much as I don't want you to leave, I really do need to get to bed. I have school in the morning." Sarah said sadly. "I didn't think Daddy and Irene were going to be so late getting to Nanny's."

Nodding, Jareth rubbed his nose against hers. "I knew I wouldn't be able to stay long. I needed to see you though." He kissed the tip of her nose before he let her go. "Tomorrow I need to see to repairing the castle and figure out something to do with my unexpected guests."

Sarah jabbed him in the chest with her index finger "No bogging them."

Laughing lighting, he scooted her from his lap onto her bed. "Fear not, I won't bog them, well my brother might wind up there, but I promise the others are safe."

"No bogging him either." She scolded.

Shaking his head, he took the hand that was still jabbing his chest to emphasize her point and raised it to his lips. "Very well, I give you my word I won't bog any of them, including my brother." He promised before kissing her knuckles.

"Good." She replied. "I guess I'll see you tomorrow night then?"

Jareth stood and nodded. "I'll be here the instant you call." Leaning over he kissed her softly. "Goodnight my love."

"Goodnight Jareth." She said softly as she watched him walk to the window.

He opened it and gave her a soft smile before changing into his owl form. The next instant he had flown out and the window magically closed behind him. After watching him go, Sarah changed into her sleep clothes and climbed into bed. Sarah closed her eyes and was soon fast asleep with visions of a certain glittery monarch going through her mind.

Chapter Text

Next morning Sarah woke to her alarm clock blaring in her ear. Reaching over, she slapped the clock until it turned off. Sitting up, she heard the goblins groan. They hated waking up early as much as she did. "Come on gang. Time to wake up." She told them sleepily as she climbed out of bed.

The goblins groaned and pulled the covers over their heads in an attempt to go back to sleep. Walking to her closet to grab clothes, Sarah almost missed the flowers on her vanity. She turned and walked over with a big smile on her face as her half-asleep brain registered what she was seeing. There on her vanity was a vase filled with red roses and an envelope propped against it with her name on it. As she picked up the letter, she smelled the roses and gave a sigh of contentment. She knew who the roses were from before she opened the note.

Good morning beautiful. I hope you slept well. I certainly didn't. I found my bed cold and not at all comfortable without you here. I was very tempted to come steal you away for the night or join you in your bed, though it looked a bit crowded with all the goblins. I can't tell you how much I miss you already, but as I promised I shall refrain from interfering with your studies. I hope you have a wonderful day Precious. If you need anything don't hesitate to call or send one of your goblins. I love you.
-J

Sarah read the note several times before setting it down. Feeling a tug on her shirt, she looked down to find Cam was out of bed and grinning at her. "Lady like flowers from Kingy?" Sarah nodded. "Kingy will be happys to hear that."

"Cam I need you to do me a favor." She quickly sat down and pulled paper from her desk and wrote a note. Cam watched her with interest. When she was done she folded it and handed it to the little goblin. "Please take this to Jareth."

"Okay, Lady." And he disappeared. Sarah stood and smelled her roses one more time before getting dressed for school.

At the Castle beyond the Goblin City Jareth was fast asleep. Exhaustion had finally overtaken him and he was dreaming of his Sarah. There was a popping sound as Cam appeared outside his room. "Kingy still sleeping." Said the goblin guarding his door.

"I has letter from Lady. She tells me to gives it to Kingy." Cam explained.

"Lady Sarah?" the guard asked. Cam nodded and the guard stepped aside. "Okays. Go in, but be carefuls waking up Kingy."

Cam nodded and hurried in and rushed to the King's bed. He climbed up and sat Jareth's shoulder. "Kingy. Kingy." He shook him gently.

Jareth rolled over. "No, just stay in bed Precious." He mumbled.

"Kingy." Cam shook him again. "Kingy I has letter from Lady."

Jareth sat up. "What?"

"I has letter from Lady. She tells me to gives it to you." Cam said shyly.

"Sarah sent you? Is she alright?" He turned and started to get up and dress.

"Lady really happy when she sees flowers. She writes note and tells me to brings it to you." Cam explained as he held the letter out to Jareth, who quickly took and opened it.

Good morning my glittery sneak. Thank you for the beautiful flowers. It was a wonderful surprise to wake up and find them. I'm sorry you're having trouble sleeping, but we'll see each other soon enough. (Jareth chuckled when he saw that Sarah had written the word Wish but then scribbled it out.) I'd love to spend time with you now, but I have to head to school. I appreciate you being so understanding when it comes to my studies. Feel free to write back though. I'm sure Cam won't mind being our messenger today.
Love, Sarah
PS I miss you too.

Jareth read the letter twice, a giant grin on his face. Looking down he found Cam watching him carefully. "Give me a moment and I'll have a reply for you to take to Lady Sarah." Cam nodded and waited patiently as the King wrote on the paper. When he was done he handed it to his little spy. "I have a feeling you're going to be running back and forth a lot today little one."

"It's okay. If it helps Lady and Kingy I do it." Cam took the letter and hurried back to Sarah. When Cam returned to her house, Sarah was already dashing out the door to head to school. Hurrying to catch up to her, Cam dashed from bush to bush. "Lady!" He called out when he was close. Sarah looked and saw him hiding in the nearby bush. Making sure no one else was around, she rushed over to him. "Letter from Kingy." He handed it to her and then vanished. Sarah opened it and read it as she walked.

Sarah,
I'm glad you liked the flowers. So why cross out wish? Didn't want me to make it so you can't go to school today? Don't worry I do have a Kingdom to run and a castle full of unexpected guests, so while I'd love to spend all day every day with you, I'm afraid I can't. If you wish to write back and forth I'd be happy to be your pen pal. I just hope we don't wear out poor little Cam today.
Love, J

She smiled and slipped the note into her pocket. Throughout the day Sarah wrote to Jareth and he returned the letters when he could. At lunch, Sarah sat at a table by herself, or so it seemed to everyone else. Her goblins hiding under the table. Eating her apple, she had a notebook in front of her so no one thought it was weird when she wrote a reply to Jareth.

"There she is."

Sarah looked up from the paper she was writing on ad saw Beckie and Whit sitting down across from her with their lunch trays. "Hi." She smiled and finished her letter quickly and handed it to Cam.

"Alright Missy, you have a lot to explain," Beckie told her in a scolding tone.

"What?" Sarah tried to act innocent.

"Don't what us Sarah." Whit glared slightly. "You told us you were going to your grandmother's for Christmas break."

"I did."

"Where else did you go?" Beckie inquired as she and Whit leaned across the table.

"Yeah, we called your grandmother's house to wish you a merry Christmas only to be told you weren't there," Whit informed her.

"And something is definitely different," Beckie added. "You're never this cheery on the first day of school and don't think that we haven't seen you passing notes to your little goblin friend."

"Wait, you can see them?" Sarah looked around quickly.

"Yeah… we've been able to see them since Halloween." Whit commented.

Glancing under the table, Sarah saw 4 of her goblins shrug. "We likes Lady's friends." Patch whispered.

"Lady lets us stays out when they comes over, so we thoughts it be ok to lets them sees us." Flower explained timidly.

"Can't be helped I guess." Sarah sighed. "Just don't let anyone else see you."

"Okay, Lady." The goblins agreed.

"So where were you? And what's with the notes?" Beckie asked again.

"Yeah, do you and his Glitterness have that much to talk about?" Whit questioned. "I figured if he missed you that much he'd just pop in and try to pull you into a storage room or something." She said jokingly.

"Oh God, don't give him ideas." Sarah shook her head. "No, he's busy with Kingdom business and dealing with his family so he can't get away. Plus he promised no interfering with my school work. That's why we're talking via notes." She grinned.

Suddenly a little hand placed a new note in front of Sarah. She opened it and read it to herself.

I'd love to have dinner with you. Your place or mine? By the way, have you told your friends about our change in status? If not, are you planning to? Your choice, just wondering how I should behave around them the next time I see them.
-J

Sarah chuckled, wrote her reply and handed it to Cam. Beckie and Whit watched her and exchanged looks. "Alright spill it," Whit demanded.

Grinning from ear to ear, Sarah looked at her friends. "Oh, he wanted to know if I had told you the news yet, which I was just about to do anyway." She ate more of her apple and left them waiting.

"Well…" Beckie was getting impatient.

"Well, the reason I wasn't at Nanny's when you called is because I spent a week in the Underground with Jareth."

"You what?!" They both shouted earning looks from others in the cafeteria.

"Shh!" Sarah looked around. "Not so loud."

"You were with him for a whole week?" Beckie couldn't believe it."

"How did you talk your parents into that?" Whit asked.

"I didn't," Sarah smirked. "Nanny talked them into letting me spend the break with her and then told me I was an adult I was free to go where I wanted. Her only requirement was to meet Jareth."

"So your grandmother helped you sneak off with Glitterbutt and agreed to keep it from your parents?" Whit laughed lightly. "I love your grandmother even more now."

"Yea me too." Beckie agreed. Sarah's grandmother didn't mind that Beckie and Whit were a couple and they could be themselves at her house. They loved accompanying Sarah to visit her for that reason, along with the delicious treats she always made.

"So what happened?" Whit inquired. "He didn't do anything funny did he?"

"If he did we'll beat him up for you," Beckie added.

"Yea, magical King or not he doesn't mess with our Sarah," Whit added.

Sarah laughed. "No, no he didn't do anything wrong. He was a perfect gentleman." Sarah assured them.

"Well, that's boring." Beckie frowned.

"You were just threatening to beat him up?" Sarah was a little confused by her friend's reaction.

"If he did something unwanted. I had hoped he snogged you at least."

Sarah blushed. "What?"

"Yeah if we had known you were going we would have made you a headband with mistletoe," Whit said sarcastically.

"Mistletoe was not needed, and his cousin made sure there was plenty of it around anyway," Sarah stated.

"So wait, you two actually did make out?" Beckie asked with hopeful eyes.

Sarah ducked her head feeling a little embarrassed. "Yes." She responded softly.

"About time." Whit grinned. "Was beginning to wonder if he was a eunuch."

"Oh, he's definitely not a eunuch," Sarah replied.

"Details." Beckie was practically bouncing in her seat.

Sarah proceeded to tell them all about her trip to the Underground, her gifts from Jareth, the fact they were now dating and all the events of the ball. The only thing she left out was the fact she now could use magic. She didn't want to have them asking her to show them, especially when she was still a little afraid of it herself.

Meanwhile, Jareth was having issues of his own at the castle. "Bog Damnit!"

"Now, now calm down brother," Jaxel said trying to soothe his brother's temper.

"How can I be calm? Look at this mess! And I just agree to have dinner with Sarah. What if she wishes to come here tonight?" He debated kicking the remaining goblins, but then who would clean up the mess?

"It'll be fine Jareth," Jaxel assured him.

"I'd figured you'd be used to this cousin," Alastair spoke up. "Don't goblins make messes all the time?"

"Yes, but why now?" He groaned.

Just as Jareth sat on his throne, despite it being covered in feathers, Cam returned with another note. "Kingy." He grinned holding the letter out to the King.

Sighing, Jareth took the note. "Thank you, Cam."

Jaxel raised an eyebrow. "Thanking a goblin and calling him by name? My, my, things certainly have changed." He smirked as he watched his brother open the note.

"Cam belongs to Sarah," was all his brother said as if the reasoning for his actions should be perfectly clear from that alone.

Well, you just spoiled me there for an entire week, so how about you come here for dinner this time. Daddy and Irene are leaving at 5 and Toby is staying at Angela's tonight. I can have dinner ready by 6.
-S

Leaning back, Jareth laughed. "Oh dear Sarah, if I didn't know better I'd think you planned this in advance." With a flick of his wrist, he summoned a pen and wrote his reply. When he was done, he stood and handed it to Cam. Bowing to Jareth, the little goblin hurried off to deliver the letter.

Jaxel watched his brother with interest. "Well…"

"Sarah wants to cook for me tonight." Jareth smiled. "Now get the goblins to clean up this mess. I'll be in my study." He disappeared before his brother or cousin could argue.

With a sigh, Alastair headed for the door. "I'll go get Heidi."

"Whatever for?" Jaxel questioned.

"I'm not letting her miss out on all the fun of getting goblins to clean," Alastair replied.

When Cam arrived back in the cafeteria, Sarah's lunch was almost over. Reading the note quickly, she tucked it into her bag and cleaned up her things. Beckie and watched her. "So.."

"He's coming over for dinner tonight." Sarah grinned and her friends just rolled their eyes as they all walked to class together.

Chapter Text

Sarah dashed around the house trying to get everything ready. Glancing at the clock she saw it was 5:30. "Crap!" She quickly placed the chicken, macaroni and cheese, and peach cobbler back into the over to finish cooking. She was glad the sides and pasta were already done. "Goblins!" The five goblins raced to the kitchen when she called. "Now I need you to watch the oven. If anything gets too golden colored turn the oven off here." She showed them how to turn the knob. "then come get me."

"Where Lady going?" Dusty asked.

"Just going to take a quick shower and dress for dinner. I'm trusting you five. Don't let me down." She rushed upstairs and grabbed her light green sundress from her room and hurried to the bathroom. After a quick shower, she dressed, dried and combed her hair, and raced back downstairs to find Jareth and the goblins staring at the oven. Glancing at the clock, she sighed. So much for putting on a little makeup. "You're early." She told him as she grabbed the oven mitts off the counter.

Jareth turned and smiled. "I wouldn't dare be late when a beautiful woman is cooking for me."

Shaking her head, she smiled and stepped past him. Carefully she pulled most of the food from the oven, set the oven temp to a low degree to keep the remaining dish warm, turned the microwave on to heat up the vegetables, and set the table for two. When everything was done, she turned to Jareth and the goblins. "Alright my Goblin Five, its time to head back to the castle."

"Ah do we has to Lady?" flower groaned.

"Yes, that was our deal. Now go." Sarah said as she crossed her arms over her chest.

Reluctantly, the goblins left and Jareth chuckled. "Parents are gone and now all the children are gone too." He walked over to her slowly, a smirk on his lips. "If I didn't know better, I'd think you have plans for me tonight." He said in a low voice as he wrapped his arms around her waist.

"I do," Sarah responded with a smile as she wrapped her arms around his neck.

"Oh?" He raised an eyebrow and tilted his head slightly.

"Yes, dinner and a movie." She said before giving him a brief kiss. "Now sit your butt down." She ordered as she pulled out of his embrace and sat at the table.

"Yes, my Queen," Jareth replied as he sat down and looked at all the food on the table. "Looks wonderful my dear." He placed his hand over hers and gave it a gentle squeeze. "You really didn't have to go to all this trouble for me Precious."

"I know." She rotated her hand and interlaced their fingers. "I wanted to do this. I enjoy doing things to make you happy as much as you do."

Jareth chuckled. "So you believe the way to make me happy is to cook for me?"

"Well, here in the nonmagical world there's an old saying, the way to a man's heart is through his stomach," Sarah told him as she let go of his hand and started filling his plate with small portions of everything. She wasn't sure what he would like and she didn't want to waste food or make him feel obligated to eat something he didn't like.

"The way to my heart huh?" He questioned with a devilish grin. "I don't believe it's through my stomach, but I'm fairly certain you already found your way into several of my things, my heart included.

Sarah blushed slightly knowing full well what things he was most likely implying. "It's just an old saying." She told him as she placed the plate in front of him and made her own plate.

Jareth picked up his fork and examined his plate. "So do tell what is it that I am eating tonight?"

"Well, this," Sarah pointed to her plate, "is a chicken dish I learned from a friend. The chicken is baked in a tomato sauce, covered in cheese, and served with rotini. The rotini is the noodles under the chicken." She explained. "There's also stuffing, macaroni and cheese, and vegetables." She explained all the foods she made except the peach cobbler which was still in the oven. Sarah wanted dessert to be a surprise. Watching him closely as he ate, it seemed he enjoyed each item he tried except the vegetables.

After cleaning the first plate, Jareth filled and emptied it two more times. When he was done, he pushed his plate forward and sighed. "You will definitely have to teach these recipes to Cooky, otherwise you may become my new cook." He teased. "I never knew aboveground food could taste so delicious, although don't let the goblins know we had chicken."

"Why?" Sarah tried to think of a reason for not telling them, especially seeing she had given chicken to the Goblin Five with no issue. "The chickens in the castle?"

"Most have been claimed as pets by the goblins and the rest are wild," Jareth responded. Sarah nodded, finally understanding why some of the goblins might get upset about eating chickens. "Also, one or two may be goblins or humans that failed their run and got turned into chickens." He tried to sound serious, but he couldn't hold back his grin and soon he and Sarah were both laughing.

Shaking her head, Sarah smiled at him. "So did you save room for dessert?"

"There's more?" Jareth sighed. "I suppose I shall simply have to endure more of your mouth watering food." He joked.

Sarah stood and grabbed his plate and placed it with hers by the sink. "Close your eyes."

"What?"

"Close your eyes. Dessert is a surprise." She grinned.

"Very well." He said as he closed his eyes.

Sarah quickly grabbed the vanilla ice-cream from the freezer and pulled the cobbler out of the oven. She placed a large spoonful of the cobbler on a small plate and scooped some ice cream on top. After returning the ice-cream to the freezer, she placed the plate in front of him. Feeling a little mischievous, Sarah grabbed his spoon and got a small amount of cobbler and ice-cream with it. "Now open your mouth."

Jareth smirked. "Planning to feed me now, Precious?"

"Just open your mouth, Goblin King." She said firmly. He did as she asked and she carefully placed the spoon in his mouth. He closed his lips around it and Sarah slowly pulled the spoon back, letting him take the treat from the spoon. "How is it?"

He opened his eyes and chewed. Once he swallowed, he grinned. "Peaches. First pancakes and now this. Precious if there is a way to my heart through my stomach I believe you've found the way."

"Does that mean you like it?" She asked playfully.

"It's delectable. As are you." Jareth said before pulling her onto his lap and wrapping his arms around her waist.

"What are you doing?" She laughed lightly.

"Having my dessert." He responded as he kissed her neck.

"The cobbler will get cold and the ice cream will melt." She told him as she tried, unsuccessfully, to pull away.

"Well, we can't have that." He took the spoon from her and grabbed a scoopful of the ice-cream and held it to her lips. "Your turn Precious." His voice was low and his eyes dark.

Sarah opened her mouth and slowly took the cold treat from the spoon, her eyes never leaving his as she did. She took the spoon back and offered him another bite. He took it happily and returned the favor. Feeling rather warm from being so close to him and the sensual act of feeding one another, Sarah decided to take things up another notch. She scooped up the last slice of peach from the plate and when Jareth opened his mouth to take it from her, she placed a finger to his lips and shook her head. He tilted his head in confusion and watched as she pulled half of the peach into her own mouth and leaned closer. Not one to waste an opportunity, Jareth took the other half of the peach and kissed her. Sarah used her tongue to push the fruit into his mouth and pulled back slightly.

He quickly chewed and swallowed the peach and then once again captured her lips, his tongue pressing against hers, seeking entrance. Sarah parted her lips for him and let herself get lost in his peach flavored kiss. Jareth had been behaving and restraining himself all evening. He had wanted to say the hell with dinner and kiss her senseless the moment he saw her enter the kitchen. There was just something about seeing her in a dress that caused his heart rate to rise, along with other things.

She ran her fingers through his hair as he ran one hand up her leg slowly. When he pulled back a little and lightly sucked on her bottom lip, she dropped the spoon that was still in her hand. It fell the floor with a loud clinking sound and Sarah pulled away, her senses returning to her. "Perhaps we should go to the living room." She suggested.

"I'm comfortable right where we are." He purred as he nipped and licked her neck.

"Jareth." His name came out as a sigh. Closing her eyes, she took a deep breath and made herself pull free of his grasp. Standing she took a step away. She knew if she didn't, she would kiss him again and she was certain if given the chance he'd ravish her right there on the kitchen table. Taking another deep breath she grabbed the plate and walked it to the sink. "Why don't you go relax in the living room while I clean up in here."

Standing, Jareth retrieved the fallen spoon and carried it to the sink. After placing it by the plate, he wrapped his arms around her from behind, his lips ghosting along her neck. "Allow me to clean up. You made this incredible dinner for me, thank you for that by the way. The least I can do is clean up."

Leaning back against him, Sarah ran her hands over the arms around her. "Its alright, I've got it. I need to pack the food for you to take with you anyway. And I need to separate a small amount for the goblins. I promised them leftovers for tomorrow."

Sighing, Jareth kissed her cheek and released her. "Very well Sarah. Just don't take too long."

Turning she gave him a gentle smile. "Go on and relax. I'll be there in a few minutes." She gave him a quick kiss and pushed him towards the door. Jareth didn't argue any further. He went and sat in the living room and waited for Sarah. She quickly divided the food and packed it in containers. Once everything was in the fridge, she stacked the dished by the sink to be washed later, she didn't want to make him wait too long.

When she entered the living room, Sarah found Jareth sitting in her father's recliner with a magazine in hand. Looking up from his reading, Jareth smiled. "All done?" Sarah nodded and he placed the magazine back on the coffee table. "So what else did you have planned for us tonight? I believe you mentioned a movie."

"That's right." She went to the tv and placed a tape in the VCR. "I think you'll like this one, at least I hope you do. It's one of my favorites even though it just came out a year or two ago." Sarah explained as she remained bent over while fast forwarding through the previews.

"I'm sure I shall enjoy it if I can keep my attention on it." He said as he stood.

Glancing behind her, she saw Jareth's eyes roaming up and down her body. "Behave." She warned as she hit the play button. Walking to the couch, she sat down and patted the spot beside her. "I really want to watch this with you."

"Very well dear." He sighed as he sat by her. "I'll do my best to focus on the movie and not the gorgeous girl beside me." He leaned back made himself comfortable. "So what are we watching?"

"Its called the Princess Bride." She responded as she looked over at him. Jareth raised an eyebrow and tried not to laugh at the thoughts running through his head. "Don't give me that look." She scolded "Just watch."

"Yes dear." He turned his head and focused on the television. He tried not to smirk when she snuggled against him, her head resting on his shoulder. He wanted to continue where the left off in the kitchen, but he forced himself to behave. It was clear that his Sarah wanted to simply enjoy a normal evening like a normal couple with him. So he was determined to give her the happy date she wished for and show that their relationship wasn't just about the physical pleasures they could share. And it couldn't be a bad thing that she wanted to watch a movie about a royal wedding with him.

Focusing on the movie, he smiled. Sarah claimed once that she had outgrown fairytales, yet she wanted to watch a movie with him that started with a grandfather reading a fairy tale to his sick grandson. Glancing down after a few minutes, he found Sarah completely engrossed in the movie. He wrapped his arm around her waist and held her close. "Comfortable Precious?" He whispered as his thumb rubbed along her ribs slowly.

"Mmmhmm." She replied.

"Just making sure."

"I am, now hush." It's getting to a good part." Sarah informed him.

He chuckled and turned his attention back to the movie. He had to admit it was an interesting story. A common girl chosen to marry a Prince and now she was being kidnapped. Perhaps Sarah was correct about him enjoying this film. He sat quietly watching the story play out as he enjoyed Sarah's closeness. His hand continued rubbing her side in soothing motions.

"What is it with Giants and rocks?" Jareth asked when Fezzik threw a rock at the man in black.

Chuckling, Sarah grabbed his hand that was on her side and interlaced their fingers, mainly to stop its motions. His caresses along her ribs, just under her breast were driving her mad. "I like Fezzik. He reminds me of Ludo."

"Would that mean the fencer is your little knight?" Jareth asked.

"I never thought about it, but yeah, I guess Inigo is like Didymus."

"So which one is Hogwort?" Jareth inquired.

Poking him gently in the side, Sarah shook her head. "It's Hoggle."

"Whatever." He returned the favor and poke her side.

"Hey, that tickles!" She squirmed.

"Does it now?" He continued tickling her until she was laughing hysterically. She tried to fight back, but soon he had both of her hands restrained while he used his free hand to tickle her. "Do you surrender?"

"Yes." She kept laughing. "Just stop."

"Very well." He stopped tickling and kissed her softly before releasing her hands. After a couple soft pecks on her face, he returned his attention to the movie. "Now what did I miss?"

Sarah tried to calm her breathing and leaned back against him. "The man in black beat Fezzik and now he's having a battle of wits with Vizzini. He put poison in a goblet and Vizzini has to figure out which one." Sarah explained.

Jareth nodded and watched Vizzini switch the cups. "That little cheat." Sarah smiled and chuckled when he said, "Seems the man in black is a bigger cheat."

Sarah relaxed against him and wrapped her arm around him. She was glad he was enjoying the movie, but mostly she was enjoying the fact that the Mighty Goblin King could be like a normal mortal and just enjoy a quiet evening with her just having dinner and watching a movie. No magic, no goblins, no family drama, just him and her. It was nice to be normal for a change. She hoped they could spend many more evenings like this together.

"Wait how can the farm boy be the dread pirate?" Jareth asked.

Sarah smirked. "Just watch and all will be explained."

Throughout the rest of the movie, Jareth made comments as he got confused or upset such as, "What is that vile creature?" or "How dare they kill him!" For someone who didn't watch movies, he was certainly deeply fascinated with this one.

When the movie was over, Sarah closed her eyes and hummed along to the song that played during the end credits. Jareth watched her with a smile and as he listened to the lyrics he couldn't help noticing familiarity from the emotions the words were expressing. Once the song was over, Sarah sat up and looked at the clock, completely oblivious to the fact that Jareth had been staring at her the whole time. "We still have a little time before my parents are due home. I'll need to make sure the kitchen is cleaned before then. But anyway what did you think of the movie?"

Jareth grinned. "It was quite a tale. I was greatly entertained and I love the song at the end." He told her as he wrapped his arms around her.

"Yea I love that song too." She smiled. "I always imagined myself dancing to it at a ball or at someone's wedding."

"I could arrange that." He whispered.

"Jareth?" She gazed into his eyes, searching for a meaning to his statement, but all she found was love and adoration there.

"Sarah…" Her name was almost a purr from his lips as he leaned in to kiss her.

He had barely pressed his lips to hers when he heard whispers from behind the couch. "Shh, see I tells you they ok."

Pulling away from Sarah and shook his head, and she tried not to laugh. They both turned and peered over the back of the couch to see the Goblin Five huddled together doing a horrible job of being quiet. "They kissy kissy." Dusty grinned.

"They always kissy kissy." Patch made a disgusted face.

"That cause they in love stupids." Flower said with her hands on her hips.

"I believe we have 5 volunteers for kitchen cleaning duty," Jareth said as he stood and walked around the couch to glare at the little deviants.

"Kingy!" They shouted and tried to run.

"Stop!" He ordered. They froze and looked back and forth between him and Sarah.

"I thought I told you five to wait at the castle?" Sarah asked as she stood and join Jareth on the other side of the couch.

"We just makes sure Lady ok," Cam said with his head down.

"And why wouldn't she be?" Jareth asked.

"We hears Kingy's brother say Lady in danger." Patch stated.

"We no want Lady hurt," Dusty added.

"I tells them Kingy keeps Lady safe, but they no listen," Cam informed the King.

Jareth sighed. "Yes our Lady may be in danger from my mother, but as long as I'm with her she is perfectly safe. I've also asked Vol'sun to continue guarding her when she's here. I expect you five to keep her safe as well."

"Of course Kingy!" Patch smiled.

"Yea, we no lets anyone hurts Lady." Flower stated.

"Good. Now follow me." He led them into the kitchen. "I want you to clean this room and I want it spotless as if Sarah herself had cleaned it. Am I clear?"

"Yes, Kingy!" They said and started to go to work.

"Before you five clean, you might as well. Eat." Sarah said as she joined them in the kitchen. She pulled out the containers of food she had set aside for them. "Then all the dishes can be done at once."

"Excellent plan Precious." Jareth smiled.

They watched the goblins open the containers and start to eat and Jareth was amazed at how careful and neat they were being. Shaking his head, he led Sarah back to the living room. "Now you don't have to worry about cleaning. So did you have any more entertaining movies we could watch?"

"Well let's see." Sarah walked over to where the VHS tapes were stored. "There's Legend, Willow, The Dark Crystal, Clash of the Titans, Back to the Future, Sheena, Ladyhawke, Wizard of Oz, Beastmaster, Star Wars…" she continued to read the titles and Jareth just stared at her.

"Sarah I haven't the slightest idea what any of those are." He told her when she finished naming the movies.

"Oh right, well.."

"I trust your judgment, Precious. Just pick one."

"I think we'll watch Willow." She said as she switched the tapes. Once she hit play she wasted no time returning to the warmth of Jareth's arms.

Feeling her shiver, he looked down at her with concern. "Cold dearest?"

"Just a little chilly. I'll be fine." She snuggled closer to him. "You're nice and warm."

Jareth summoned a crystal and tossed it up. It popped and turned into a blanket that fell gently onto Sarah. "Is that better love?"

She pulled the blanket over her shoulder. "Much better, thank you."

"You're very welcome, Precious." He said as he kissed the top of her head. It wasn't long before Sarah drifted off to sleep. Jareth ignored the tv and watched her quietly, simply enjoying having her so close.

A few moments later, Jareth looked up to see Cam standing in front of him. "Yes?"

"Sorry, Kingy. Just came to lets you knows we almost done cleaning in kitchen. You wants us to clean out here too?"

Nodding, he stood with Sarah in his arms. "Wait for me in the kitchen. I shall be there in a moment."

"Yes, Kingy!" Cam saluted before rushing to join the others.

With a wave of his hand, the tv and VCR turned off and Jareth carefully carried Sarah up to her room and placed her on the bed. He covered her with a blanket and went to check on the goblins. He watched them work together to wash the few remaining dishes and after they had placed the last one in the strainer to dry, he picked one up to examine it. It was a lot cleaner than he expected. Placing it back in the strainer, he smiled. "Very good. And here I thought I might need to threaten you with the bog."

"No bog Kingy." Patch said.

"Yea, Lady no like it when we smells like bog," Dusty added.

"And she makes us bathe in red fruit stuff." Flower told him with a disgusted look on her face.

"Red fruit?" Jareth inquired. Flower hurried to the panty and grabbed a can of tomato juice and handed it to the King. Jareth examined the can and laughed. "Sarah bathed you in this?" The all nodded. He laughed again and handed the can back to Flower. "Carry on then. Clean the living room as well as you cleaned in here."

"No worries, Kingy." Dusty grinned.

"We helps Lady cleans all the time," Patch told him.

"Really?" Jareth raised an eyebrow. "Perhaps having her as my Queen will be more beneficial than I originally thought."

"Lady would makes good Queenie." Flower smiled.

"Kingy going to marry Lady?" Cam asked.

"That is my intention." Jareth smiled. "All in good time. Sarah wishes to take things slowly so I'm not rushing her."

"Lady's been happier lately," Dusty commented.

"Yea, Lady no seem sad no more." Flower agreed.

"Then I must be doing something right." Jareth was grinning from ear to ear. "Continue the good work." He hurried back to check on Sarah. Opening her door slowly, he found her sleeping soundly. He sat on the edge of the bed and watched her for a few minutes before he made up his mind. He stood and went back downstairs and ordered the goblins to keep watch until her parents returned, at which time they were to come get him. He would be upstairs with their Lady until then. Returning to Sarah's room, Jareth removed his boots and climbed into bed beside his beloved. He pulled her into his arms and held her close. He knew he'd need to leave once her parents returned home, but for now, he just wanted to hold her in his arms and rest.

Chapter Text

A couple hours later, Sarah woke to find herself in bed, wrapped securely in Jareth's embrace. "Jareth…" She mumbled sleepily as she sat up.

"Shh, go back to sleep Precious." He tried to keep her from getting up.

"What time is it?"

"Late." He whispered. "Your parents will be home anytime. The goblins are keeping a lookout. I shall leave when they return."

"I fell asleep didn't I?" She turned to look at him.

"You did."

"I'm sorry," she whispered as she climbed out of the tiny bed.

"Whatever for, dearest?" Jareth asked as he sat up.

"We were supposed to spend the evening together and I passed out on you, literally."

Jareth chuckled as he stood and watched her stretch. "It's quite alright, my dear. I enjoyed myself immensely." He reached over and caressed her cheek. "Having you near is enough to make any night pleasurable."

She reached up and placed her hand over his gloved one as it continued to rub her cheek. "Why do you still insist on wearing the gloves around me?"

"Old habits, love." He pulled his hand away. "Shall I take them off?"

"Please." She watched as he removed his leather gloves and tossed them at the foot of her bed.

"Better?" he asked as he cupped her chin and ran his thumb over her lips.

Smiling, she nodded. "Yes, I think it should be a rule that you aren't allowed to wear them when we're alone."

"I believe I can follow that rule." He smirked as he leaned towards her.

"Kingy!"

Jareth sighed and lowered his head hearing the goblins call for him. He placed his gloves back on. "One moment, Precious." He stepped into the hall to see what the goblins wanted. He returned a moment later to find Sarah wasn't where he left her, in fact, she was nowhere to be seen. "Sarah?"

"Just a minute."

Following the sound of her voice, he came to stand in front of her closet door. "Precious why are you in the closet?"

"I'm changing," Sarah replied.

"Don't ever do that, Sarah," Jareth called through the door. "I love you just the way you are."

The closet door opened and Sarah stepped out. His eyes looked her over as she closed the door. Sarah had changed into her pajamas which consisted of a large baggy Aladdin Zane shirt and loose fitting sleep pants. She turned to face him, her cheek slightly pink. "Sorry I wanted to get comfortable. Since it's late I figured it was best to change into my sleep clothes, so it's not an issue when I fall asleep again."

Jareth nodded. "Understandable, though I don't know if I approve of you having another man's face on your body, especially while you sleep."

Glancing down at her shirt, she chuckled. "Oh, this is David Bowie. He's a famous musician."

"I know very well who he is, dearest, doesn't mean I like him being on your shirt any better than if I didn't know."

Sarah shrugged. "I figured you would like him. He wears flashy and unusual things like you do."

"Flashy and unusual?" Jareth almost sounded offended.

"Well compared to most people. I like Bowie. He's different and doesn't care what others think. He does what he loves and doesn't care if others like it or not."

Nodding Jareth sat on the edge of her vanity. "I hear he's a decent fellow. I thought you liked Kingston though?"

"I do. I just don't own any shirts with him on them." She smiled. "I like Bowie and Kingston, and actually I found myself listening to their music a lot after my time in the Labyrinth. Especially Kingston. He… well, he reminded me of you." She looked away, suddenly feeling very embarrassed. "You both have soothing voices that sound very similar at times and his songs are full of meaning and emotion."

Smiling Jareth walked over to her and hugged her from behind. "So you like him because he reminds you of me?" He smirked.

"Partly, I mean I thought he was good before I met you, but after…" she hugged his arms as they wrapped tighter around her waist. "Whenever I was thinking of you I'd listen to his music. I thought it was the closest I'd get to hearing your voice again."

He kissed her cheek. "Oh Sarah, believe me when I say I will never leave you again unless you wish it. Even if we just continue like this, with me just visiting when I can. I will always be here for you."

Sarah turned her head to face him. "Even if I don't move to the castle beyond the Goblin City with you? You would still be here?"

"Of course, darling. Even if you decide you no longer want me to court you, I will still be your friend."

"Why? Why do you care so much?" Sarah's eyes began to get glossy. "No one here thinks I'm important. I have very few friends that aren't members of your kingdom and I wonder at times if the friends I do have truly care or just take pity or worse take advantage of me." She pulled out of his embrace and turned to face him. "Most people here think I'm ugly and weird, and sometimes I think maybe they're right. I'm rarely invited to go anywhere, Beckie and Whit are the only ones that come over and that's only when Irene isn't here. Daddy is always busy at the law firm and I love Toby but he's not always the best conversationist. I feel like I'm alone most of the time. Hell, my own mother left me. So why are you so devoted to me, when no one else thinks I'm worth a minute of their time?" A tear fell down her cheek as she stared into Jareth's eyes.

Jareth's chest felt tight. He pulled her into a tight embrace and gently scooped her up into his arms. Carrying her to the bed, he sat with her on his lap and rocked her gently. "Sweet Sarah, you are not weird or ugly. You are extraordinary. To the mortals here you are different than they are. The fools shun the most valuable people and things in their lives because they can't see the beauty in their uniqueness." He made her look at him and smiled sweetly. "I care because of who you are. You are the most beautiful woman, inside and out, that I have ever known. Despite being mortal, you stood up to me and proved yourself my equal. I'm devoted to you because you deserve such devotion. You should be pampered and loved, and if permitted I would do so every day for the rest of our lives." He rested his head against hers. "I love you, Sarah Williams. If you don't believe anything else I say, please believe that much at least."

"I don't deserve you," Sarah whispered as she hugged Jareth and cried on his shoulder. He didn't say anything else, for nothing else was needed. He simply held her and let her cry. He was certain she had kept all of this bottled up inside for far too long. So many things she had faced alone and had been strong through it all, her mother abandoning her, the way her stepmother treated her, being looked down on by adults and even her classmates, feeling all alone and her mix of emotions after her run through the Labyrinth. All the stress finally caught up with her. While he hated to see her cry, he was glad he was there to hold and comfort her in her time of need.

A little while later, Sarah had stopped crying and was curled up in Jareth's arms, fast asleep. He held her close and rocked her gently as he hummed quietly. Hearing the door open downstairs, he placed the sleeping girl on the bed as the voice of her father filled the house. "Sarah, we're home!"

Jareth wiped her face, removing all traces of her tears and took his owl form. Hiding on the other side of her bed, he waited. A moment later, just as he had expected, Robert knocked softly on the door before opening it and stepping into the room. "Sarah? Sweetheart, are you awake?" Getting no response, he tiptoed over and smiled. Leaning over, he kissed her forehead and whispered, "Goodnight, Princess."

As Robert started to leave, Sarah tossed in her sleep. "Jareth." Hearing her speak, her father looked back to see her smiling and hugging her pillow tightly. Robert walked out grinning. He closed the door and headed back downstairs.

Once her father was gone, Jareth changed back and watched Sarah sleep for a moment. He brushed her hair back behind her ear. "Goodnight Precious, I'll see you tomorrow," he whispered as he leaned down and lightly kissed her lips before returning to the castle.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

Sarah woke the next morning feeling more rested than she had in a long time. Glancing at her vanity, she saw a note and a small box waiting for her. She quickly got out of bed and rushed over. Taking the lid carefully off the box, she found a small broach in the shape of a yellow flower. The pin was beautiful but she wasn't sure what kind of flower it was. Shrugging, she opened the note.

Good morning my beautiful Sarah,

Thank you again for dinner and the movies. I thoroughly enjoyed the first one. The second seemed interesting, but well, once I realized you were asleep, I was too preoccupied with watching you to care about the movie. Sitting there with you in my arms was extremely comfortable and relaxing. I never knew just sitting quietly could be so pleasurable. I returned to the castle after your parents returned. I didn't want to leave you in case you needed me during the night, but your father came to check on you, so I felt safe leaving you in his care. And before you start apologizing, it's fine, love. I was glad I could be there to comfort you. I'm sorry you've had to be alone for so long and for any unnecessary stress myself or my subjects may have caused you over the years. If you need to talk, or even cry more, please don't not hesitate to call me. I look forward to seeing you tonight.

Love,

Jareth

P.S. If you didn't know, the broach is a buttercup.

Sarah smiled and placed the note on the vanity. She quickly dressed and then wrote a reply to Jareth. After sending Cam to deliver her note, she hurried off to school, her new broach on her sweater, right above her heart.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

Back at the Castle, Jareth was enjoying his morning meal in his room, avoiding his unwanted castle guests. His sleep had been anything but peaceful. He never realized how strong Sarah truly was until she told him last night about her insecurities. Why anyone would abandon or look down on her was beyond his comprehension, and he didn't like how little she thought of herself. But he now understood why she never called for him, even though she wanted to see him. She feared he would reject her like everyone else seemed to do.

Downing his glass of juice in one shot, Jareth stood and grabbed his cloak. He was determined to show Sarah all the wonderful things that he loved about her that she couldn't see in herself. As he stepped into the hall, he looked down when he heard a pop and saw Cam appear. "Morning, my little messenger. I take it our Sarah is awake?"

Cam nodded. "Lady send letter." The little goblin handed the note to the King, who quickly opened it.

Jareth,

Thank you for the beautiful broach. I love it. I know you said not to do it, but I am sorry for last night. Sorry for falling asleep on you, twice, and for breaking down like that. I don't like letting people see me like that, but I do thank you for being there for me. Your presence made it a little easier to deal with. I have several major tests today, so I can't write back and forth with you like we did yesterday. Would it be possible for you to be at my house when I get home from school? I left the window open for you. Hope to see you then. I miss you.

-Sarah

The King smiled and wrote a quick reply and handed it to Cam. "No reply is needed little one so don't worry. You won't be running back and forth all day." Cam nodded and gave a salute before dashing off. Jareth headed quickly to the throne room. He wanted to hurry and finish his work for the day before it was time to see his beloved Sarah. He just prayed his brother and cousin wouldn't find some way to delay him.

~*~*~*~/…~*~*~*~

Meanwhile at school, Sarah was focusing on her test and trying not to think of Jareth. The broach didn't go unnoticed by her classmates. Many were confused as to why anyone would give a buttercup broach as a gift. It made perfect sense to Sarah though. Beckie and Whit had tried cornering her in the hall, but left her alone when she promised to explain at lunch. Sher wanted to look over the materials for her tests all she could. She hadn't been studying as much as she should and she knew it. Part of her wondered if she should even bother. If she went to the Underground with Jareth her education wouldn't do her much good. She couldn't imagine needing calculus when dealing with goblins. But if she didn't go with him, what was she going to do?

Before Jareth came back into her life, Sarah honestly had no idea what she was going to do with her life. Graduate High school and then what? College? What would she study? She once dreamed of being an actress like her mother, but she gave up on that dream years ago. She thought about teaching, she liked children.

Sighing, Sarah hurried to her next class. When she sat down she saw a note on her desk. She quickly placed her book on it and glanced around. Cam was nowhere to be seen, but she was positive he had delivered it. She quickly opened it and read the single sentence on the page.

As you wish.

She placed the note in her bag and prepared for the test. Luckily it was an English test on a book she had read years ago, The Great Gatsby. Sarah loved reading, so tests on required reading were always a breeze.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

Jareth sat in his study looking over the various requests on his desk. He sighed as he looked at the mess of papers. He really needed to hire an assistant, but where was he going to find someone that could keep this place organized. Perhaps Sarah could help him organize things later. Shaking his head he sighed another request for supplies and placed it on the growing stack of completed papers.

"There you are little brother," Jaxel said as he walked in. "Good to see you actually working instead of moping around the castle."

"I do have a Kingdom to run, in case you hadn't noticed, brother," Jareth replied in an irritated tone. "What do you want now?"

"I was simply thinking of offering you my services. I'm stuck here, so I might as well make myself useful."

"Fine go clean the lavatories," Jareth muttered as he glanced over the next request.

"No, seriously Jareth, what can I do to help?"

"I was being serious."

Jaxel shook his head. "My talents would be wasted on such a menial task and you know it. Now, what are you working on?" He picked up random papers from the desk and looked at them. "How can you read this? Who wrote this? Children?"

"Goblins," Jareth said through gritted teeth. "Remember I am the King of Goblins. Now if you would please stop picking up random things," he snatched the papers from his brother's hands, "and leave me in peace, I could get through all of this." He gestured to his entire desk. "I do have an appointment this evening that is of great importance and I want this done before then."

"Dinner with the Lady Sarah again?" Jaxel grinned.

"Perhaps. She merely requested I be at her home when she returns from her schooling." Jareth replied. "Now go find Alastair, surely he can keep you entertained." Jaxel held his hands up in surrender and left the King to continue his work.

~*~*~*~/…/~*~*~*~

At lunch Sarah's friends wasted no time gathering around her, anxious to hear about her new broach. Beckie sat to her left, Whit was beside her girlfriend, Kim was on Sarah's right, and Miranda and Rachel were across from them.

"Alright, time to spill it, Sarah." Rachel grinned.

"Yea, you've been holding out on us girl," Miranda added.

"We want to hear all about him," Kim smirked.

"Him?" Sarah eyed Beckie and Whit.

"Don't even try to tell us that broach isn't from a boy," Rachel warned.

Sarah sighed and shook her head. She knew it was useless trying to hide anything from her friends. "Alright, yes it was a gift from a guy."

Her friends stared at her, waiting for her to continue. When she didn't, Rachel gestured with her hand. "Well…"

"Well, what?" Sarah should have known it wouldn't be that simple, but what else could she say? She couldn't tell them the truth.

"Who is he?" Rachel asked.

"Where'd you meet him?" Kim added.

"And why a buttercup? Why not a rose?" Miranda inquired.

Sarah laughed lightly. "Well, his name is Jareth. We met several years ago and recently we got in touch with one another again. As for the broach, it's an inside joke. The last time I saw him, we watched The Princess Bride together."

"Awww, so he's calling you his Buttercup." Kim grinned.

Sarah ducked her head, feeling embarrassed. "I guess he is."

"So when do we get to meet him?" Rachel asked.

"What?" Sarah looked up.

"Yeah, when do we get to meet him?" Kim questioned.

"I don't know. I mean, he lives pretty far away." Sarah answered.

"Aw, that must be hard, only being able to talk on the phone or write letters," Miranda said sympathetically.

"Well, now you know why Sarah always seems so tired lately." Beckie smiled.

"Yea, she stays up too late talking to Sparklebutt," Whit added.

"Sparklebutt?" Kim, Rachel, and Miranda asked together.

"Well I know I tend to glow with fabulousness, but no need to call me that," Torry said as he, Marcus, Toki, and Chris joined the group.

"No, we didn't mean you, Torry." Miranda smiled.

"It's Whit's nickname for Jareth." Beckie grinned.

"Oh?" Torry leaned closer. "Who's Jareth."

"If you're calling him Sparklebutt he must be an interesting fellow," Chris commented.

"Jareth is Sarah's boyfriend," Kim said quickly.

"I never said that!" Sarah exclaimed as she blushed.

"No, but the color of your cheeks says its true," Toki smirked. "I'm guessing the broach is from him."

"Yea, he thinks Sarah is his Buttercup," Miranda explained.

"So why do you call him Sparkle…" Marcus paused. "Nevermind. I probably don't want the answer to that."

"He wears glitter," Beckie responded.

They all looked to Sarah for confirmation. "Yea, he's into the whole glam rock thing."

"That's cool," Toki was the first to speak.

The rest of her lunch period her friends continued to ask about Jareth and Sarah answered the best she could without telling them everything. When it was time to go back to class, she was happy for the break. She didn't like keeping things from the few friends she actually had.

The rest of the day went by fairly quickly. Sarah was so focused on her work, she never noticed the white barn owl outside the window of her last class. Jareth had finished his work at the castle with hours to spare and after dealing with his brother and cousin for half an hour he had had enough. So he decided to wait for Sarah to finish her lessons and then walk her home, even if he had to remain in owl form until they reached her home.

When the school day was finally over, Sarah walked out with her friends. Jareth watched from a nearby tree, waiting for the right time to approach her. Stopping at the corner, Sarah turned to her friends. "Coming with us for pizza at Moe's?" Rachel asked.

"No, I need to get home. I…"

"Yea, we know. You have to watch Toby." Kim answered.

"That and she can't wait to get home and call her boyfriend." Beckie teased.

"Boyfriend?" They turned to see Candy, the head cheerleader and her crew walking over. "Like anyone would actually date Williams." The cheerleaders all laughed.

"She has a boyfriend." Kim defended Sarah. "He gave her that broach."

Candy looked it over. "Looks fake, like her boyfriend."

Sarah's fists were clenched at her side. She knew if she called, Jareth and the goblins would be there immediately, but she knew better than calling on the goblins at times like this. As for Jareth, well she was a little afraid of what he would do, not that Candy and her crew didn't deserve to be put into their place, but the bog might be a bit much.

"He's not fake!" Beckie shouted.

"Yea, we've met him," Whit added.

"Like we'd believe the freaks." Faith sneered.

Jareth saw and heard everything and he had had enough. Flying down to a bush he changed to his normal form and quickly glamoured himself. No one would treat his Sarah like that, not on his watch.

"If he's not fake where is he?" Jen asked.

"Yea, and what's his name?" Nell inquired.

"There you are Precious."

Sarah turned the minute she heard his voice. "Jareth?" She almost didn't recognize him. His Fae markings were hidden, his hair was shorter but still wild. He was wearing tight black jeans, a t-shirt, a black leather jacket, and black gloves. She had to smile at his choice of t-shirt though, it was a black shirt with the Aladdin Zane lighting bolt on it.

Smiling, he hurried to her side and embraced her. "Shall I bog them?" He whispered in her ear as he held her close.

"No," she whispered back. "What are you doing here?" she asked as she pulled out of his embrace.

"Surprising you, my dear. I was able to take an earlier flight, so I rushed to see you. I was hoping to get here in time to walk home with you." Noticing the broach, he touched her face gently. "You're wearing the broach."

Sarah smiled and nodded. "I love it. Thank you."

Jareth hugged again and kissed her forehead. "Anything for you, Precious."

Normally she would have been embarrassed and discouraged so much public display of affections, but she was positive he was doing it because of Candy and her crew, who were starring in shock. Sarah's friends were also starring in disbelief, including Beckie and Whit, who weren't certain that was really Jareth.

"Where are my manners?" Jareth smirked as he released Sarah and turned to the others. "You all must be my dear Sarah's friends. I'm Jareth King." He bowed to them and then held his hand out to Sarah, who took it happily. "I do a lot of traveling for my work, so I can't be here for Sarah as much as I'd like."

"You're Sarah's boyfriend?" Candy questioned.

Nodding, Jareth gave Sarah's hand a gentle squeeze as he gazed into her eyes. "For now, though I hope to be much more someday." He winked, making her blush, and turned back to the others.

"Why would you date a freak like her?" Faith asked in a disgusted tone.

Suddenly Jareth was directly in front of her. "You will watch your tongue wench." His calm demeanor was gone and he was towering over her and being the fearsome Goblin King that Sarah knew he truly was. "Sarah is no freak. She is beautiful and intelligent. You will show her the respect she deserves. Am I clear?" He asked with a glare, the glamour around his eyes weakening just enough to make him all the more frightening. Faith swallowed her gum and nodded. "Good. Now get out of my sight." She and the other turned and ran for their lives.

Jareth nodded, quite happy with himself. Sarah rolled her eyes and shook her head at him. Turning back to the others he was once more calm and pleasant. "Sorry about that."

"That was awesome!" Rachel exclaimed.

"Dude, I think you made Faith piss herself," Marcus grinned.

Sarah chuckled as she watched her friends praise him. At least he didn't go overboard and bog them, or worse. She walked over and hugged him. "Thank you."

He returned her hug and kissed the top of her head. "My pleasure, Precious. Now, why don't you introduce me to your friends?"

She let him go and turned to the others. "Everyone, this is Jareth. Jareth these are my friends. That's Marcus and Toki." She pointed to the couple to her right.

"Hi," Toki waved and Marcus held his hand out to Jareth who shook it.

"This is Kim, Rachel, Chris, Miranda and the guy sitting over there fanning himself is Torry. You already know Beckie and Whit of course." Said introduced everyone as Jareth stood beside her, his hands rubbing her shoulders.

"Pleasure to meet you and lovely to see you, ladies, again." He said as he bowed his head towards Beckie and Whit.

"Hey, Sparklebutt," Whit grinned and earned a glare from Jareth. "So what's with the normal look?"

"Well, I didn't want to stand out too much, especially since I was rushing here to surprise Sarah," Jareth explained.

"So, is Sarah your Princess?" Kim asked.

"Princess? Heavens no." Jareth smiled as he turned Sarah to face him. Kim looked shocked that he would say that, but before she could say anything he lifted her hand to his lips and kissed it before continuing, "She's my Queen."

"Aww! That is just too precious!" Torry had finally gotten up and rejoined the group. "His name is King and Sarah is his Queen… Oh, I feel like I'm in a fairy tale. Sarah where have you been hiding this man?"

"My apologies, Sarah and I decided it was best to keep our relationship a secret until the proper time in which I could be here to meet everyone," Jareth explained. "Now if you'll please excuse us, I would like to spend some time with Sarah in private, after all, it has been such a long time since we last saw one another." He added sweetly.

Sarah tried not to roll her eyes at him and Beckie and Whit just grinned, they knew they had seen each other the night before. Kim and Rachel nodded in understanding and started walking off. "Nice to meet you." Rachel said as they waved.

"Yea, its good to see Sarah so happy. You better make sure she stays that way," Toki said in a threatening tone.

"You have my word of honor I shall do all in my power to keep Sarah happy for as long as she permits me to." He replied with a bow.

Marcus laughed at his girlfriend and shook Jareth's hand again. "Good to meet you, man."

"He's a keeper, Sarah." Miranda grinned.

"Does he have a brother?" Torry asked.

"I do," Jareth stated plainly. "What of him?"

"They aren't really close," Sarah said quickly. "We really should get going. I still have to get Toby."

"Go on, get out of here you lovebirds." Chris teased.

Jareth held his arm out to Sarah, "Shall we, Precious?"

Sarah waved to her friends before taking his arm and started heading for the daycare by Sarah's home. When they were out of hearing range, she looked at Jareth. "Thank you for controlling your temper back there."

Nodding, he growled slightly, feeling his rage return just thinking about it. "I'm still tempted to bog the lot. Do they speak to you like that all the time?"

She nodded and lowered her head. "They take pleasure in making fun of anyone not in their little group."

"Fools. I should have put every last one of them in their place."

"Jareth…"

"Relax, Sarah. I won't touch them. Doesn't mean I won't be infuriated by their behavior. If you wish that they be punished all you need do is tell me and it will be done."

"That won't be necessary," she said quietly. They walked in silence for a while then stopped just before reaching the daycare. "Umm…. Jareth…"

"Don't worry, Sarah. I understand. I'll fly ahead and wait for you in your room." Jareth said as he caressed her cheek.

"What?" Sarah looked at him confused.

"I promised to stay away for Toby, so I'll leave you to collect him."

"Actually, I was going to say I want you to see Toby today. I think its time I properly introduced you to my baby brother and he's been begging to meet the friend that I spent Christmas break with. He does remember you a little, but I haven't told him yet that I'm dating the Goblin King." She admitted. "He's kept the goblins a secret from Daddy and Irene all this time, so I know he'll stay quiet about you too."

Blinking at her for a moment, he grinned from ear to ear. "I'm touched, Precious. You trust me to be near your little brother."

Blushing a little, Sarah turned her head. "Well can't be my boyfriend and not eventually meet my family. I think Toby is the best place to start." Seeing Jareth's raised eyebrow she continued, "I'm not saying I'm ready for you to meet Daddy and Irene, but well let's just start small. Plus if Toby recognizes who you are I don't want it to be in front of others.

He nodded, "Understood Sarah." He held his hand out to her once more. "Now, shall we collect young Master Toby?"

Smiling, she took his hand and together they walked the last block to the daycare.