Continuing Tales

Please Come Home

A Labyrinth Story
by Ying-Fa-dono

Part 13 of 20

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Please Come Home

Jareth was the weakest he'd ever been in his entire life, and yet, he was elated all the same. He'd finally arrived, at long last. He'd been afraid that he might not make it in time. But he had. The Shadow Temple stood before him. A large, grand place built of black stone, a large staircase leading up to a pair of stone doors through which no Fae was walked through twice.

Jareth hurried up the steps. His arrival had given him a rush of energy, now that he'd finally got there. He reached the doors and, without even touching them, they opened for him slowly and loudly. Jareth took one slow breath, and then stepped over the threshold, knowing he'd not go out again. Almost at once, the pain he'd been enduring in his chest throughout his journey seemed to vanish. True, there was still an unpleasant pressure pushing down on his chest, but it no longer ached and he no longer felt the need to cough.

The entrance hall on the inside was filled with the most elegant stone figures. Graceful personages of Fae who have sought peaceful death within these walls were scattered around the hall. Soon, his own image would join them. Then, the stone faces all turned to face him and an unearthly sound echoed throughout the room.

"Why have you entered this place? What is your purpose here?"

"To ease my passing," Jareth replied, feeling no fear.

"So it shall be," the voice announced. "Jareth, Goblin King and Lord of the Labyrinth, may you find solace in your demise. The spirits of the Temple shall do you no harm."

"Thank you," said Jareth. He lifted his hand and a crystal materialized there. This would be his last spell. "Now, only one more thing to do to ensure my end is peaceful."


You can only imagine Sarah's surprise when she awoke the next morning to discover that the nice old woman who had fed and helped them last night was nowhere to be found and in her place was a lovely young woman with pink hair and dark skin.

"W-who are you?" she asked. "Where's Jinx?"

"I must apologize," said the girl. "My name is Ena. Jinx is but an assumed name I took while in disguise. I'm terribly sorry for not telling you what I was immediately upon our meeting, but it is necessary for a Fae to keep themselves to themselves."

"You're a Fae?" Sarah asked, interested.

"Well, bless my soul," said Sir Didymus, who was also awake alongside Hoggle and Ludo. "Never would I have imagined meeting a Fae other than his Majesty."

"But what was the disguise for?" Hoggle asked, suspiciously. "Why didn't you just say so?"

"Because the conflict and strife of the Age of Lovely Blood still lingers in the remains of the Fae race," explained Ena. "My tribe bore very distinct features and could easily be recognized by enemies. If I were to run across another Fae with contempt toward my tribe, it would surely be the death of me. I am no fighter by nature."

"Oh," said Sarah, understandingly. "That's okay. If it was for your own protection, I understand completely. So, where are you headed, Ena?"

"I was heading toward the labyrinth," said Ena, somberly. "I knew of Jareth's illness, and I wondered if I could help him. So, I thought if I asked the Prophet of the labyrinth, I'd find answers."

"Well, that would've been a waste of time," said Hoggle, his nose in the air.

"But, she has a point, Sir Hoggle," said Sir Didymus. "Perhaps we should have asked the Prophet for advice."

"Bah!" said Hoggle. "Don't tell me you believe that garbage. You live in the labyrinth. You know full well there ain't no Prophet."

"What are you all talking about?" Sarah said, annoyed by the fact everyone knew something and wasn't letting her in on it. "Who is this Prophet?"

"Supposedly," said Hoggle, skeptically. "There's a Prophet what knows all the secrets of the labyrinth. He's supposed to be Jareth's most trusted advisor, if you believe that nonsense."

"What makes it nonsense?" Sarah asked.

"The fact that nobody's ever seen him," said Hoggle. "Even Jareth has never actually admitted that he was real. They just think he's real because Jareth knows anything and everything to do with the labyrinth even when he's miles and miles away. Trust me, Jareth don't need no Prophet, he just uses his magic. But everyone is so sure he's there, but that's just pish-posh. The only thing we've got is that kooky old wise man, and he's gone around the twist."

"I had heard that the Prophet was simply a story," said Ena. "But I still wanted to help. I've known Jareth for a long time and I grieved to learn that he was ill. If he's gone to the Shadow Temple, and judging from what you told me last night, he has, then our chances of reaching him in time are very slim."

"But we can still try," Sarah insisted. "Can't we? There's still some hope, isn't there?"

"I don't know if you should risk it," said Ena. "A human has never entered the Shadow Temple before. You could get hurt. Best to turn back before it is too late, Lady Sarah."

"I can't," said Sarah, just as she'd said it before. "Don't you understand that I can't? I have to find him. I have to tell him I'm sorry. This is so important to me it's unbearable. Can you understand that, Ena?"

Ena looked reluctantly at Sarah, her brow furrowed in what looked like worry. But, she sighed. "Very well. If it means so much to you, Lady Sarah, I will do nothing to stop you. Indeed, I'm in a mind to help you."

"You are?" said Sarah, hopefully.

"I know where the Shadow Temple is," said Ena. "I can take you there on my wagon. It isn't very swift, but it is much quicker than on foot. If you would like that, I would be willing to lend you a hand. Jareth is a good friend of mine and I wish to help him as you do, Lady Sarah."

"Oh, Ena," said Sarah, beaming. "Thank you so much. You're a lifesaver!" She turned to her friends. "What do you guys think?"

"I'll take a ride in a wagon over walking around any day," said Hoggle, rubbing his feet. "Besides, she said she was a friend of Jareth's. It might help."

"Ludo go with Sawah," Ludo replied, with a big smile.

"And I, Sir Didymus, shall accompany my lady anywhere," said Didymus. "Ambrosius and I shall ride beside the wagon. The fair maidens and Sir Hoggle shall ride the cart and Sir Ludo can accompany me on foot."

"Great plan, Didymus," said Sarah. "Okay, let's get going. We're short on time."

Within five minutes, the group set out again. Sarah and Ena rode in front of the wagon while Hoggle sat in the back, looking out at the road they left behind. Sir Didymus and Ambrosius scampered on one side of the cart while Ludo took long strides on the other side.

"So, how do you know the Goblin King?" Sarah asked Ena, as they traveled.

"Jareth? I have known him for some time," said Ena. "Let's just say we had similar upbringings."

"Hoggle said he was raised by the Fae Witch," Sarah said.

"Yes, he was," said Ena. "But he ran away from her while he was still young. He traveled the lands for many years. I suppose he'd set off to meet the remains of the Fae, perhaps looking to see if there was anything left of his tribe. If so, his efforts proved in vain. He then gathered the goblins together and built the Goblin City and eventually the labyrinth around it."

Sarah sighed. "Do you know much about the Age of Lovely Blood? It sounds horrible."

"It truly was," said Ena, gravely. "I was not as fortunate as Jareth. I was born just as the war reached its most violent peak. Now I am the only one of my tribe left."

"What?" said Sarah, shocked. "What happened, if you don't mind my asking?"

Ena looked rather miserable, but she spoke nonetheless.

"Mine was a tribe of peace," she said. "We lived upon a hilltop, so that we could see any danger coming for us and we could evade it. We were no fighters and loathe violence and bloodshed. We where blessed with the gift of nature-speaking, a rare gift which ran common in our tribe. We could hear the voices of nature, the wind, the water, the trees, the stars, they all spoke to us."

"That sounds so nice," said Sarah.

"It . . . was nice, wasn't it," said Ena. "But it did not save us. The war reached us, somehow. Perhaps our talents were envied by another tribe, I do not know. Suddenly, the water stopped speaking to us. We were concerned but its change in nature, but then we learned why in the most terrible way. The stream from which we got our drinking water had been poisoned. Everyone who had partaken of the water feel into fits of pain and weakness."

"Horrible," said Sarah, feeling angry and pitying.

"You can't imagine," said Ena. "Then, we were attacked. We could do nothing to save ourselves. We could not fight at the height of our strength, let alone when we were poisoned and weak. How I managed to survive the onslaught, even I do not know. I simply awake, for I had fainted in the midst of the chaos, and the ground was smooth with blood and everyone I'd ever known lay dead on the ground."

Ena went quiet as she remembered that day:

Homes were in flames, the ground littered in bodies, and she was so ill she could not move to escape the hellish scene. Ena tried to crawl away, but her limbs refused to work. She'd consumed too much of the poison. She knew she wouldn't last. She pass in this horrible place before she'd even stopped growing. Her immortality had been a waste. She was going to die a child, alone and feeble amongst the bloody remains of her people.

Then a shadow fell over her. Ena lay her head down, planning on simply pretending to be dead in case the predator above her planned on finishing her off.

"My, my. It seems that one has stayed alive."

The voice was empty of malice. It sounded gentle and pitying. Ena felt a hand on her face. A soft one, yet cold. She looked up at the Fae woman standing over her. Long, honey colored locks and vivid green eyes.

"Poor little thing," she said. "What monsters to attack such a defenseless tribe. Well, at least one managed to get away. Come on, little dear."

Ena felt the soft, cold hands lift her and she was held against the newcomer's bosom like an infant child returned to her mother.

"There, there," she said. "It's alright. Limstella shall take care of you. What is your name, little one?"

Ena struggled to find her voice. "Ena."

Ena returned to the present and looked over at Sarah. "I was discovered by another Fae and I was taken care of until my strength returned."

Sarah felt tears begin to leak in her eyes. "That's the most horrible thing I've ever heard. How would do such a terrible thing?"

"War does grizzly things to you, Lady Sarah," said Ena. "That is one thing I learned out there. You can imagine my relief when the war finally ended, but there was so little left. It was terrible."

Ena walked around the battle field. It looked just like her home had when the attack had ended. The sky was red, as was the blood-soaked ground. The fallen lay broken and ripped all around her. Ena longed to look away, but the hand that was holding tightly to hers gave her a little shake.

"Do not look away, Ena," said Limstella, staring out at the chaos with mild disgust. "This is what the Fae race has resorted itself to. Pathetic, really. We had such promise in the beginning."

The two walked among the bodies. What Limstella was looking for, Ena didn't know. Then they heard a muffled cry.

"Lady Limstella," said Ena. "Did you hear that?"

"I most certainly did," said Limstella. "Stay here a minute, Ena. I shall go investigate. Do not touch anything."

Limstella released Ena's hand and walked away into the blood and shadow. Ena stood there in silence, wishing with all her might that Limstella would arrive back quickly.

"Why, Ena. We are most fortunate. Come see what I have discovered."

Ena walked over toward Limstella's voice. Once she reached the woman, she had a bundle in her arms. Inside was a very small Fae child.

"Feast your eyes, Ena my dear," said Limstella. "Have you ever seen such a beautiful Fae boy? He's in need of substance. Come along, Ena. Back to the Tower, with us and our new little guest as well. What shall we call him, eh Ena? Hm. Perhaps we can call him Jareth. That sounds nice, don't you think?"

Limstella's voice was kind and motherly, but Ena shuddered at the look on her face. She was staring down at the little boy with ill-disguised greed in her eye.

Ena was silent for awhile, once again lost in her own memories. Sarah stared at her for awhile before saying, "Um, Ena?"

Ena came back with a jolt. "Oh, my apologies, Lady Sarah," she said politely.

"No, I should be sorry," said Sarah. "I shouldn't have brought up such a painful subject."

"Humans are known to be curious beings," said Ena, with a slight smile. "I do not doubt you in the slightest."

"Ena, you talked about tribes," said Sarah. "You mean there were different groups of Fae?"

"Are their not different groups of humans?" asked Ena. "Yes, there are many different kinds of Fae. Each individual had their own magical powers that manifest themselves in various ways. I'm sure, if you have met him before, you have seen the manifestation of Jareth's magic. That of sparkling, crystalline spheres?"

And really cute little girls, Sarah thought to herself thinking of Rin and the labyrinth. "Yes, I have seen the crystals. So, magic is different for every Fae?"

"Yes. Each form is unique to the one who uses it."

"Then, what form does your magic take?" Sarah asked.

Ena raised her hand and made a gesturing movement. Suddenly, a small glass flower appeared in the palm of her hand.

"Oh, how sweet," said Sarah, staring at the flower.

"Thank you," said Ena, handing the flower to Sarah. "Here you are," and she handed the flower to Sarah. "You may have it."

"Really?" said Sarah, taking it. "It's beautiful. Thank you. What kind is it?"

"That is a snapdragon," said Ena, somehow not really meeting Sarah's eyes as the former put the flower behind her ear.

They arrived at the hills and trees stretched out in front of them. Suddenly, Sarah got a mental tug to grab hold of the pouch around her neck. She took it into her hands and closed her eyes. Rin's voice echoed into her mind.

"Sarah," she said, sounding uneasy. "Are you sure you're going the right way? I don't feel Jareth's magic anymore. I don't think he went this way."

Sarah turned back to Ena. "Ena, are you sure this is the way? Did the Goblin King take this path?"

"Actually, no," said Ena. "The Marshes are a shortcut to the Temple. We'll get there faster this way. Jareth probably wouldn't have gone this way. He'll have taken the longer way through the White Woods."

"So, this is a shortcut?" said Sarah.

"Yes," said Ena. "We'll make much better time than taking the long way."

There you go, Rin, Sarah thought. See? It's okay. We're just going a faster way than he did. It'll be okay.

"Hm," said Rin, still sounding fearful. "I don't know, Sarah. Are you sure that this woman is trustworthy."

Of course I'm sure.

"How can you be sure?"

I . . . I don't know, Sarah replied honestly. But I just do, okay? Trust me. She let go of the bag and severed the connection with Rin.

Before long, night had fallen again and they stopped for the night. "We can afford to rest," Ena assured them. "Even if Jareth has entered the Temple by now, he still has time. Maybe a few days. It should be alright if we take time to recover out strength."

As Sarah, Hoggle, Ludo, Sir Didymus, and Ambrosius fell asleep, Ena watched over them. Her eyes lingered on the snapdragon she'd given Sarah and her insides felt sick. She suddenly remembered the previous night and then felt consumed with guilt.


After Sarah had fallen asleep, Ena had searched through the back of the wagon until she found what she was looking for. A small, circular mirror with elegant carvings around the edge. Ena looked into the mirror, but did not see her own reflection. Instead she saw the face of Limstella glaring back at her.

"Have you reached him?" Ena asked.

"Yes and no," said Limstella, sounding outraged. "I've reached the Temple, but the idiot has gone and sealed it against me! It won't let me in to see him! Curse you, Jareth!" Limstella screamed in fury.

"I have found the human," said Ena. "My assumption was correct. She is indeed the one who has won Jareth's heart."

"What?" Limstella looked amazed. "Are you sure?"

"Most sure," replied Ena. "What will you have me do?"

Limstella stared at Ena. "You know full well what it is you must do. Where is she?"

"Asleep," replied Ena. "Meer feet away."

"Then, what are you waiting for?" Limstella said, sharply.

Ena's insides squirmed. "Oh, Limstella, you know I cannot. It is against my very nature."

"So you would rather the little mortal wretch get away with single-handedly killing our Jareth?" Limstella asked in a deathly cold voice. "Nature is about balance, Ena my dear. A life for a life, it is only fair. Now, do the deed. I'll not ask you again."

Ena threw a glance over her shoulder at the sleeping companions. "But her friends, they are innocent."

"Then just use your magic to make sure they stay still," said Limstella, impatiently. "They are pathetic creatures, it shouldn't be too hard."

Ena put down the mirror, let out a little moan of misery and reached into the bag where she'd found the mirror. After a moment's searching, she found a sharp dagger with an emerald handle.

"L-Lady Limstella," Ena pleaded, looking at the weapon with great fear.

"One deep cut across the throat and it is over, you silly girl," Limstella snapped. "It shouldn't be any trouble for you. Go on. Do it while she still sleeps."

Ena was now holding back tears. She was about to leave the wagon and approach the sleeping girl, when Limstella's voice echoed out of the mirror. "Wait! Ena, stop!"

Ena stilled gratefully. "Yes, Lady Limstella."

"Don't kill her yet," said Limstella. "Something has just occurred to me. I've a much better idea."

"Really? What?"

"Jareth has sealed me out of the Temple," said Limstella. "By the look of the spell, he has bewitched it to recognize me. I cannot enter. But, that human girl probably could still be able to get in."

Ena stared at the face in the mirror. Limstella's eyes were sparkling with delight. "Yes. That's what I'll do. Listen closely Ena. I'm currently parked in the Marshes not far from the Temple. Tell the girl to take the shortcut through here and you should cross my path. Then I'll use the girl's name and face to enter the Temple and spare Jareth's life."

"But Jareth has such little time," said Ena. "He might not last."

"This human harlot broke his heart around three Aboveground years ago, correct?" Limstella asked. "Then he should have enough time if you take the shortcut like I told you. Even in the Temple he should have, oh, five days if we are lucky? Just make haste, but not so much haste that you alarm the girl. Give her one of your snapdragons, Ena. They cast a spell of deception, do they not? Use the spell on her and she will believe anything you say, even if you lie through your teeth. Bring her to me and Jareth survives, or keep her too long and he dies. Your choice, Ena."


Ena curled up in a ball and buried her face in her knees. Jareth, Lady Sarah, she thought miserably. Forgive me. Forgive poor, worthless Ena. I'm not strong enough to stand up to her. I'm not.

Sarah suddenly stirred; she sat up and looked around at her sleeping friends. "Ena?" she said, looking over at the Fae girl. "Are you okay?"

Ena raised her head. "Lady Sarah," she said. "Can you not sleep?"

"No," said Sarah, miserably. "I'm just so anxious. I don't want to keep sitting around here, knowing he's sick and probably dying in some temple somewhere."

Ena thought for a moment. "You needn't worry so much, Lady Sarah. Rest now."

Sarah lay back down, but Ena spoke again.

"Lady Sarah, what is that around your neck?"

"A bit of the labyrinth," said Sarah, sitting up and opening it. "It's supposed to help me find the Goblin King again." Sarah pulled out the white flower that was inside. Ena gasped.

"A white poppy," she said. "Lady Sarah, that is your relief in your hands. The smell of that flower will help you drift off to sleep. You will recover your strength quicker."

"Really?," said Sarah, taking the flower and smelling it. The scent was strange, but it was a strangeness she knew. The strangeness of the smell was just like the strangeness of the peach Hoggle had given her. And, just like with the peach, she felt as if the world was suddenly dancing all around her.

"Ena, what's going on?"

"Have no fear," said Ena. "It is just lolling you to sleep. And as you sleep, your dreams will consist of deep memories."

Sarah lay down on her side and her eyes slid shut. What Ena hadn't realized is that it would no be Sarah's memories that she would dream of. The pouch around her neck made certain of that.

Instead her dreams were the memories the Goblin King.

Please Come Home

A Labyrinth Story
by Ying-Fa-dono

Part 13 of 20

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