Loved By the Sun
Barely conscious and feeling sore all over, Sarah thought it best to keep her eyes closed. She could hear beeping from a machine and some movement. What the hell were those beeps? She tried to open her eyes but they were so heavy. Her mouth was dry and her tongue felt like sandpaper. She shifted her head and felt it move sluggishly to the side.
"Sarah?" A feminine voice broke through the fog of her mind.
She furrowed her eyebrows. Why the hell is a woman talking to her? She tried to open her eyes once again but they refused. She groaned and reached down and felt a thin sheet. It wasn't the same kind that she had fallen asleep with. She took in a deep breath and could smell the hospital stench.
Her breathing halted and her heart missed a beat. She couldn't be. She slowly opened her eyes and blinked several times as she took in her surroundings. She was in a room filled with white and a little blue. She was lying on a hospital bed, raised slightly at the head. She looked over and saw an IV pumping fluids. She followed the long cord down and saw that she was connected to it, with a needle and tape on her bony hand.
Sarah blinked, looked up and focused on the woman. She was wearing blue scrubs and her black hair was pulled back in a tight pony-tail. Her hazel eyes watched her with concern.
"W-what happened? Where am I?" she whispered, unable to find her voice. She felt so weak.
"You're in the hospital,” the nurse said gently as she walked over to Sarah's left side. She placed her hands on the rail and looked down at Sarah with the same kind of gentleness in her hazel eyes. "What do you remember?"
Sarah blinked owlishly. "This is a dream," she muttered under her breath.
The nurse raised her eyebrows. "What was that?" she asked sweetly.
Sarah looked away from the nurse and around the room. There were two brown chairs sitting on her other side by the window with the shades open. It was morning, she guessed. She looked to the door that led out of the room and saw some other nurses passing by quickly. This couldn't be real.
Sarah looked back up to the nurse's face. "Why am I not in the psych ward?"
"Oh, honey,” she whispered and shook her head. She reached out and grabbed onto Sarah's cold and brittle hand. "The doctor did warn us that you wouldn't be aware when you gain consciousness," she said softly and took in a deep breath. “You're here in the ICU. You've lost an extreme amount of weight and refused to eat or drink. You became violent and then…" she trailed off.
Sarah raised her eyebrows, tilting her head forward to make the nurse continue.
"You have lost consciousness. When you did wake up a few times, you weren't… you weren't yourself. You were very distant and barely ever spoke. But it looks like you are very much yourself in spirit right now."
Sarah felt a lump lodged in her throat. She blinked and looked away, smacking her dry lips. She needed some water. She looked down at her other arm and saw that it was just skin and bones. The healthy weight she had gained was gone. She released her hand from the nurse's and slowly pushed down the thin, white sheet and lifted up her shirt she was wearing. She saw that her stomach was sunken in and her hip bones were protruding.
"This is only a dream," she whispered.
"Sarah, this is not a dream," the nurse said softly but with much emphasis on the 'not'.
Sarah put her shirt back down and looked at the nurse who was still watching her. "How long have I been here?"
"You've been in the ICU for two months."
Sarah's eyes widened and she took in a deep breath and let it out quickly, "What?"
"Your doctor will be here very soon. I'll page her and let her know that you are awake and want to talk." The nurse backed away then paused a split second before she turned on her heels and left the room.
"Wait!" Sarah called out but it was too late.
Sarah lay there silently and couldn't seem to get her wits about her. She looked around the room and eventually set her eyes to the entryway and waited for someone to pass by or come in. But no one ever did. Something was terribly wrong and she could feel it.
"Jareth?" she whispered brokenly.
There was no response.
She blinked back the tears and took in a shaky breath. She closed her eyes and tried to conjure up Jareth's face but it wasn't happening. She couldn't even picture him. Her mind was so foggy and splintered.
Time seemed to slip by without Sarah even realizing it; she had closed her eyes at some point and when she opened them she saw a tall blonde female wearing a white robe walk in.
"Sarah, how are you feeling?" she asked as she reached around the door and put some hand sanitizer that was sitting there into her hands and rubbed them together.
Furrowing her eyebrows, Sarah eyed the doctor skeptically. "That's a deep question," she croaked out.
The doctor walked around to Sarah's left side of the bed and stood beside her and looked down at her with a cheery smile. "Deep, huh? Well just tell me how you are feeling at the moment."
Sarah smacked her dry lips and felt her tongue stick to the top of her mouth. "Confused. Thirsty. Hurting. Foggy. I could go on."
The blonde doctor nodded and reached over and placed her hand on Sarah's forehead then removed it and grabbed Sarah's wrist and placed two fingers on the inside of her wrist and looked down at her watch on the other hand. After a few seconds she removed her fingers from Sarah's dainty wrist and looked at Sarah with a concerned expression. "Well, Sarah, it's to be expected that you feel these things right now but I've been doing everything I can to help you. Do you remember my name?"
Sarah shook her head and crossed her arms across her chest but then reached down and grabbed the thin sheets and pulled them up to her neck. She was so cold.
The doctor nodded and sighed softly, "I'm Dr. Emily Thomas. I've been working with you as well as other doctors for the past few months with your rapid health depletion."
"Depletion?" Sarah whispered then looked down at the pitiful lumps where her stomach and legs were, ending where her bony feet protruded out of the blankets.
"Yes, well ever since Dr. Moore has given you the ECT's your health have gone down hill. You have refused to eat or drink You've even caused some fights. But the majority of the time you were… lifeless."
Sarah looked back up at her doctor and looked into her concerned blue eyes. "Lifeless?"
Emily nodded once and moved to cross her arms across her chest but stopped midway and let her hands fall back down to her sides. "Sarah, do you remember anything from the past few months?"
Sarah shook her head and bit down on her lower lip. All she could remember was her time in Underground. Well, for the most part. It was fuzzy but she knew she had an important role in Underground now. She had Jareth. She also had the confusion of what's real and what's not. "I haven't been here. This is just a damn dream."
Emily leaned down and placed her warm, healthy hand gently on top of Sarah's cold, frail hand that had the IV tapped to it. "Sweetie, it's not a dream. You've been saying that. To be honest and in my professional opinion, you shouldn't have had those ECT's done. I'm against them and think of them barbaric and I'm extremely upset with how it had affected you."
Sarah looked at Emily's face and took in her generosity. She looked away and stared down at Emily's hand that cupped her own. "Then explain why I've been in a different world this whole time? I got married. Everything I had said in the beginning was true. The Goblin King is real." Her eyes returned to her doctor in a challenging look.
"Sarah, you have been hallucinating. With that I can agree with Doctor Moore. But everything you have been experiencing was nothing but hallucinations."
Sarah narrowed her eyes, "Do you have any records of Dr. Zakar?"
Emily leaned up and removed her hand from Sarah's and tilted her head, her blonde hair falling slowly to the side with the movement. "Of course. He took care of you before Dr. Moore."
Sarah's eyes went wide and she heard her monitor pick up with the pace of her heart beat. "Y-You know him?"
Emily's light eyebrows furrowed in confusion. "Yes, he charted you for those five years. He had gone away and that's when Dr. Moore came in and took over. I did some digging and found Dr. Zakar's charts."
Sarah pushed herself up more and moved to get off the bed but Emily stopped her. "I need to see him," she said with a stern tone.
Emily eased Sarah back down and pulled out her old looking phone, probably hospital provided. "I'll call him. I've been calling him for a while and haven't got any responses. But hopefully he should respond now."
Hopefully, Sarah thought.
Emily dialed a few numbers and put the dated phone to her ear and both women in the room listened to the ringing then it stopped and a male voice spoke. "Hi, Dr. Zakar this is Dr. Thomas. I'm seeing your old patient Sarah Williams and she wants to see you. Maybe you could take a minute and come and see her?"
There was a response but Sarah couldn't hear what it was.
"Okay, perfect. Thank you." Emily pulled the phone away from her ear and hit a button and put the phone back in her coat pocket. "He'll be up soon. Now I want you to try and eat."
Sarah quickly nodded in agreement even though her stomach was roiling in protest. "When did he say he'll be here?"
"He only said soon. Give him a minute." Emily smiled and turned and started to walk out of the room, "I'll have one of the nurses call for food to be brought up. Try to get something on your stomach."
"Kay…" Sarah whispered and watched the back of her doctor walk out of the room.
Sarah leaned back and closed her eyes and tried to conjure up the image of Jareth but once again it was so foggy and hard. She attempted to wet her dry lips with her just as dry tongue and gave up after a few tries. She shivered and pulled the sheets back up to her shoulders and tried to fall asleep.
Although it was a good idea to rest her tired eyes, she just seemed to not be able to keep them closed. She felt her heart still racing and adrenaline running through her veins. She felt tightness in her chest and her breathing hitched every few breaths. She just couldn't seem to wait any longer. She needed answers. She felt like hell and she was sure she looked like hell.
There was something important happening. There was something she was missing and it seemed like she had been blissfully naive about everything. She had rolled along with everything that was happening.
Yes the wedding. She got married and was crowned Queen of the Labyrinth. Her memory was very fuzzy but she knew for a fact that she got married to Jareth. What had he worn? What had he said? What did she say?
Sarah opened her eyes and was disappointed that she was still in the room alone. She closed her eyes and took in calming breaths and try to let the memories flow back to her mind. She felt drugged and she knew it must have been from all the ECT's that her old doctor had put her through. Just how many times did she do them, especially unknowingly?
She moved her shoulders in a way to get comfortable and wiggled her hips to burrow deeper in the semi-soft mattress and try to get warmer under the cold sheets. As if on cue, memories started to flood her.
The time she wished herself away to Jareth the Goblin King. He had taken her and he had claimed her. He had power over her.
"Et mulier pulchra es qui crevit in morte contra vos, et crescere te simper fortior. Cum enim sit mortalis et vita migrare Fae vitae. Ne sis metuis, deliciae, quoniam ego vobiscum sum esque in sempiternum." Jareth's beautiful voice echoed in her mind.
She kept her eyes closed and listened as he said the foreign words again to her. He had said that during their vows. He had promised something to her and now it was time she knew.
She tried to remember the words as best as possible. She needed to know what that meant; she needed to remember everything so she could investigate what those words meant.
The smell of sweet pungent peaches drifted through the air and filled her nostrils. She felt a wave of dizziness as she took in the smell. She grabbed a hold of the bed on both sides of her and squeezed on for dear life, hoping to not fly away.
"It's time you knew…" Jareth's soft voice echoed through her mind.
Sarah frowned and knitted her eyebrows that caused a crease on her forehead as she listened to the very soft voice.
"It's time to let go,” he continued.
Sarah had no idea how to ask him how or what he meant. Time to let go? She didn't understand. She tried to think of the question, "What do you mean?" but it went unanswered.
Frustrated with not getting the answer she wanted, she opened her eyes and blinked several times to make sure she wasn't just seeing things. Robin Zakar stood there at the end of her bed staring at her with a strange look on his face.
"Robin…" she whispered.
He didn't move. He didn't blink. He continued to watch her and had his hands on the board at the end of the bed. His fingers were dug into the plastic and his eyes continued to stare at her, waiting. He was waiting for something.
Sarah blinked owlishly. It wasn't just her doctor. He wasn't just a regular person. He was Jareth. That she knew and remembered. "Jareth,” she corrected herself softly.
He blinked and moved to the left side of her bed and continued to watch her with a straight face. "Sarah."
She watched as he got closer to her and was finally right beside her and standing over her. He watched her and she watched him. She blinked a few times as she tried to get her thoughts in order. She felt heaviness in her chest and ice run through her veins. "What's happening?"
He slowly sat down beside her and made sure he wasn't touching her. Why wasn't he being affectionate? Why wasn't he trying to comfort her? What in the hell was going on?
"You're dying," he whispered and slowly his eyes moved away from hers and looked behind her head then to in front of him where the machine was taking her vitals. They were abnormally low. It pained him to see her like this. It pained him to see death at her doorstep.
She tilted her head and watched the frown crease his face. He wouldn't look at her. She then took in what he had just said. She felt her heart skip a beat then another. But he continued to watch her monitor and she felt like she couldn't catch her breath. "W-what?"
"You've been here at the hospital the whole time. You are dying and it's time to let go," he said softly, only for her ears to hear.
She shook her head gently and pushed down the thin sheets and felt a blast of cold air hit her and raise goose bumps on her chilled skin. She reached a hand out to him and tried to grab onto his hand. "That can't be. You said…" She whispered brokenly, "You said that I was with you. You said I had nothing to fear. We married. I gave you all…"
He finally looked back at her and slowly reached out and grabbed onto her waiting cold hand. He held it gently in his grasp and watched her eyes water with tears and slowly one tear fell down from the corner of her eye and streaked its way down her cheek and off her jaw. "You've been astral-projecting yourself. You've wished yourself to me but only came in spirit."
Sarah's eyes widened and she sat up a little more but hurt herself in the process. She groaned and stopped midway and felt gentle hands on her and pushing her back to lean against the flat pillows.
"Take it easy, love," he whispered.
She looked back at him and seemed out of breath and tried to catch her breath. "How," deep breath in, "the," deep breath out, "hell," deep breath in, "is," deep breath out, "that," deep breath in, "possible?" deep breath out.
He leaned in closer and placed his hand on her chest where her heart was fluttering and pumping harder than usual to keep the blood flowing. Her chest rose and fell with her pants. "As you came into the Underground, you were given a temporary body, all thanks to The Creator."
Sarah couldn't catch her breath and she held onto Jareth as tight as possible. He was dressed in a dark brown suit with a black bow tie. She wanted to see him and not her doctor. But she would take whatever she could get. "The Creator is in this too? How long have you known?"
He stared into her eyes and looked sad. "The whole time."
She leaned back and stared at him, shocked. She felt betrayed and that she could no longer trust him. She didn't want to die. She didn't want to leave him, even if he had lied to her. She thought she had started a new life and would move on from this terrible place. She felt more tears come to her eyes and a sob bubble up in her chest. "Jareth," she said brokenly and felt the sob come out. "I don't want to die."
He leaned forward and placed his forehead on hers, closed his eyes, took in a deep breath and let it out slowly, his breath fanning across her lips. "It's okay. I will be here."
She let out another sob and held onto him as tight as she could. She squeezed her eyes shut and didn't care that she was leaking from all her facial orifices. She was scared and she didn't want to do this. If he could just take her this time…maybe she won't have to die. "Jareth, please," she begged in a sob.
He felt like crying himself. He hated seeing her like this. All he wanted to do was bundle her up in his arms and hold her until she stopped crying. Until she passed on. "Precious…" he whispered brokenly. "When you go… when you die, you will be with me."
She continued to sob and didn't care if it caused a ruckus and nurses came in. But for whatever reason, they didn't come. They must have known this. They must have known that she was going to die. She leaned back and rubbed away tears and snot. "Jareth, I want to see you. Please show me you. I love you," she begged softly.
He leaned back and looked at her sunken in face. Her eyes were tired and red and there were dark circles under both. Her cheeks sunk in and there was no place on her face that indicated life. He reached up and ran a hand along her cold cheek and watched her as she tried to stop the sobs. "Close your eyes."
She sniffled and hiccupped out a cry and blinked a few times before she finally closed her eyes. She couldn't seem to catch her breath.
"Okay, open your eyes."
She opened them and was happy to see him in his full glory. His wild blonde locks were the first thing she noticed, and then it was his blue eyes. He was wearing his signature loose ruffled blouse with a dark grey leather jacket and light grey tights with boots. He was absolutely beautiful.
"Jareth?" she whispered brokenly.
He scooted closer to her and leaned down a little and stared into her green eyes. "Yes, precious?"
"The vows. You promised you would tell me what you said."
He smiled but it didn't meet his eyes. His heart ached but he knew the outcome. He knew there was hope and he knew that The Creator wouldn't let him down. "What I said was this: You have grown into a beautiful woman and when death faces you, you shall grow ever stronger. I will be there for you when you move from mortal life to Fae life. Do not be scared, darling, for I will be forever with you."
Sarah stared at him shocked and felt her breaths coming in short. It seemed like everything clicked. He would be with her forever as he promised. He had said she would move from this mortal life to a Fae life. So was this it? Was this what she needed to do? She had never questioned her mortality, but he must have. He had some great plan in store for her and kept it away from her. As much as she wanted to be mad at him, she just couldn't. She didn't have the energy. She was scared.
Slowly, she closed her eyes and reached out and held onto his warm hands. He held her hands gently, as if to not break her bones. She felt a tear slip from one of her eyes and slowly track its way down her cheek. "Jareth…" she wheezed out. “How can you be so sure?"
"I will never doubt The Creator. I will never not believe in you," he said gently and watched as her breaths quickly began shortening and became very far apart.
Her eyelashes fluttered but her eyes never opened. He knew it was time. He knew it was coming and it killed him to watch this happen. "I love you," she whispered.
"I love you more," he whispered back.
Her breathing stopped and the monitor started to go off, alarming the staff that her heart had stopped. It didn't take long before he heard the stirring of the staff and he had seconds to go. He leaned down and placed a gentle kiss on her dry, lifeless lips then pulled away, stood up and stepped away from the bed, cloaking himself to be invisible to others.
He watched as the nurses and doctors ran in and went to Sarah's lifeless body. They quickly started CPR and tried to revive her but he knew that it wouldn't help. They could do all they wanted to try and revive her. She wouldn't be brought back.
Just as quickly as they came, he had enough. He couldn't watch them try to bring her back. He had to speed his way to Underground and welcome his Queen to her new life.
The sound of birds singing was the first thing she heard. She listened to the wind blow through the trees around her and the sweet fragrant smell of greenery came to her nose. She took in a deep breath and filled her lungs with the sweet, pungent smell of flowers and moss. She opened her eyes and was staring up into the green sky. She blinked and refocused and realized that the sky wasn't green, she couldn't see the sky. All she saw were branches and green leaves from mossy trees that seemed to have been there since the beginning of time.
Slowly, she sat up and looked down at her lap and noticed she was in a loose white dress. It looked very familiar to the one she wore all the time when she was a teenager and acted out scenes in the park. She brought her hands to her lap and saw that her arms were healthy and had a glow. Her nails were long, no longer stubby or broken from malnutrition.
A noise caught her attention. A branch breaking and heavy hoof beats. She looked up and around and to her right side she saw a large elk with antlers that were long and twisty and branched out every which way. He stood there and stared at her with a calm demeanor and breathed heavily through his nose.
"Hello,” she called out gently.
The large elk breathed out and took in a great deep breath and blinked its large black eyes. "Hello, Sarah." His deep voice came out but his lips did not move.
Sarah stiffened and took in a sharp breath. "You can speak?" she whispered.
She slowly stood up and noticed she was shoeless. She didn't mind as the foliage on the ground did not hurt her feet. She kept her green eyes on the large elk and slowly stepped closer to him. "Are you… magical?"
He eyed her as she slowly stepped closer to him with her arm reached out to touch him. "Yes," he answered deeply.
She smiled and was just inches away from touching him. It seemed that everything around her went stark quiet and was holding their breaths. Her fingers gently touched the soft fur on the nose of the elk. She stepped closer and placed her full hand on his nose. He didn't seem to mind. He continued to stand in his spot and breathe normally. She let go of a breath she did not realize she was holding. "What's happening?" she whispered more to herself.
He moved his head to the side, away from her. She let her hand fall down to her side and watched as he looked at her sideways. "You have moved from mortal life to Fae life."
She blinked and flashes of her last dying moments went through her mind's eyes. She brought her hand up to her lips and let out a soft gasp. That's right. The whole time she had been Underground she had been in some other form… a temporary body as Jareth had said. When she woke up she was back in the hospital dying. She looked up to the elk. "Am I really here?"
He moved his head back towards her and nodded once. "Yes,” he answered. "I have given you a new body, a Fae body. You no longer have to fear of a shortened life with your King."
She blinked and looked away from the elk and searched for Jareth but he was nowhere to be seen. She looked back at the elk. "You…" she whispered as she started to realize something. "You are The Creator, are you not?"
She smiled and felt her heart race. "How? How is any of this possible? Are you a God?"
"I am The Creator of the Underground. That is all you need to know. Now go. Your King awaits."
Sarah turned and looked around the forest but saw no path leading anywhere. She turned back around and blinked confused as she looked at the empty spot where the elk had been. She turned in a slow circle and noticed that the creatures of the forest were back to singing and making their cheerful noises.
"Where do I go?" she called out.
"This way," a tiny voice answered behind her.
She turned and looked around but saw no one.
She took a careful step forward and noticed a small fairy on a green leaf of a plant that was low to the ground. "Oh, hello there."
"Follow me," it said excitedly.
She watched as its wings fluttered and became a blur and quickly zigzagged through a trail. Sarah quickly ran after the fairy and kept her eyes on it as it would stop and turn around and laugh and say "Hurry!" then went back to flying around in one direction.
Sarah pushed herself to run faster but the fairy was just too fast. But she kept her eyes on it and slowed down to a stop when she saw a large wooden door that was framed in gold with beautiful Celtic designs engraved around the edges.
Sarah slowly approached the door and looked to her right where the fairy had sat down on a petal of a flower and smiled up at her. She was beautiful with her white hair and beautiful makeup around her eyes. Sarah smiled back to the fairy. "Thank you."
The fairy giggled and swung her legs back and forth where they were slung over the edge of the petal.
Sarah smiled and looked back at the door and slowly pushed it open with both her hands. It was heavy and groaned as she opened it. She was greeted with a bright light and she shielded her eyes with one hand and walked through the doorway.
The bright light went away and went to a normal lighting—that is for the Underground. She heard the heavy door shut with a final groan but she didn't turn around to watch it disappear. She stared at the man before her with a grin on her face.
"Sarah." Jareth's cooing greeted her ears.
She giggled and ran toward him and threw herself in his arms. He wrapped his arms around her and laughed with her. In that moment they were perfectly happy. Sarah leaned her head back and pulled his head down and brought him in for a very heated kiss.
The couple were finally home and happy to start their lives.
"Two and two go so close together ,Whether there is hope that is torn apart, In the words of all that's singing, Hand in hand the beginning is at the start, Legends can be now and forever, Teaching us to reach for goodness sake, Legends can be now and forever, Loved by the sun."