Continuing Tales

Most Prized Possession

A Labyrinth Story
by Jester3

Part 13 of 42

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Most Prized Possession

Jareth looked her up and down before he admitted, "You're right, something is...missing. Come with me." Sarah was silently hoping that he had changed his mind as she followed him down the castle halls. When they entered the great kitchen she watched in bewilderment as he started rummaging through a store barrel. Sarah tried to see past him as she asked, "What are you looking for?"

Jareth suddenly turned and held up a small potato as he smugly announced, "This." Sarah gave him a blank look as she asked, "A Potato? What the hell is THAT for?" Without another word Jareth had strode up dangerously close to her. Sarah let out a startled cry as he grabbed the waistband of her breeches and pulled it forward and dropped the potato down the front of her pants.

He let the waistband go, producing a satisfying snap before he flashed her a satisfied smirk. Sarah stared at him in absolute shock. When her brain started working again, her first thought was that he obviously hadn't changed his mind. Shock was replaced by annoyance as she shook her head and snapped, "Very funny." She looked down at her make-shift "package" and added, "But I don't think so."

She quickly pulled out the potato and lobbed it at him. To her dismay he caught it. Sarah leaned over the barrel and started digging through it as Jareth replied, "Just what do you think YOU are doing?" Sarah pulled out a much larger potato and shot back, "If I have to go through with this ridiculous stunt...then I want a bigger one."

Jareth chuckled before he let out an exasperated sigh, "Why am I not surprised?"

Sarah ignored him as she positioned the new spud in her drawers and bragged, "Now that's more like it."

Jareth just shook his head as he steered her out of the kitchen remarking, "Enough of this nonsense, our guests will be arriving any minute."

Sarah followed him towards the throne room as she muttered under her breath, "You're just envious because mine is bigger..."

Jareth stopped dead in his tracks.

Sarah swallowed hard, she hadn't meant for him to hear that. Apparently Fae had better hearing than humans.

Without so much as turning to look at her he challenged, "Would you care to see for yourself just how wrong you are?" He looked over his shoulder, letting his predatory gaze settle on her as his feral smile taunted, "Perhaps you'd enjoy being proven wrong in this particular instance?"

Sarah did her best not to appear as shaken as she weakly managed, "No...really, that's not necessary."

He resumed his stride and Sarah followed in silence feeling that she'd had enough adrenaline rushes for one day.

A little while later Sarah stood at Jareth's side in the throne room as their guests made their way through the great hall. Jareth gave the hem of Sarah's doublet a sharp tug, as he advised, "Remember...not a word." She nodded as he added, "And Sarah..."

She looked up at him, "Yeah?"

His mouth had the slightest hint of an amused smirk as he replied, "Mind that your potato doesn't slip. Now go open the doors for our guests."

Sarah did her best to refrain from laughing at the sheer ridiculousness of the situation. As she reached for the great oak doors a surreal feeling overcame her, she simply could not believe that this was happening. She was dressed as a boy, posing as a page in the castle beyond the Goblin City and for the next year of her life she was at Jareth's mercy.

She should not be laughing. Yet she nearly was.

She mentally chastised herself for finding the situation amusing, after all she was quite sure that Jareth was doing this to humiliate her, his political reasons were merely icing on the cake. Sarah took a deep breath before she opened the great oak door. She bowed humbly as an older man with silver hair and shocking blue eyes entered booming, "Ah King Jareth. How wonderful to finally meet you in person."

Jareth lowered his head in greeting before he welcomed the ambassador and his daughter to the castle. When Sarah finally looked up, she met the deep blue curious eyes of a striking female Fae.

The girl was elegantly outfitted in a pale blue gown with a dropped waist, and Sarah couldn't help but notice that the woman's ample breasts were nearly spilling out of the bodice. To Sarah's surprise the Fae woman looked as though she was about the same age as herself.

The Fae's intense blue eyes darted over the pageboy inquisitively, before she followed her father into the throne room and bowed low in front of Jareth.

Jareth smirked as he realized that he would savor this chance to torment Sarah. He would watch in delight as Sarah would surely squirm in her jealousy when he lavished his affections on this unsuspecting young Fae right in front of her.

Sarah quickly shut the door and resumed her position at Jareth's side just as the old man was saying, "Jareth allow me to present my daughter, Desdemonna." Jareth took the lady's hand and dramatically placed a kiss on the back of it.

Sarah kept her eyes lowered, suddenly realizing the reason Jareth wanted her here. So, he would ooze all over this girl in an attempt to what? Make her jealous? Sarah fumed as she resolved that she wouldn't give him the satisfaction of seeing her appearing so much as even mildly interested. Jareth's polite tone nearly made her gag as he gushed, "Ah the lovely Desdemonna."

Out of his peripheral vision Jareth noticed that Sarah hadn't so much as even looked at the girl. He smirked as he decided to put his new page on the spot just a little, "Tell me, Sargonne,..." and he looked right at Sarah as he said this, "...Have you ever seen such a lovely young lady?"

Sarah narrowed her eyes at Jareth before she lowered them again and shook her head slightly. Jareth quickly added, "You must excuse my page, Sargonne. He is entirely devoted, but the poor lad does not speak."

Oddly, the young Fae was seemingly moved by this. She took a step towards Sarah and extended her hand. Jareth was rather surprised, as noblewomen didn't often pay much mind to pages. So, he watched with great interest as Sarah hesitantly took the young lady's offered hand and placed a shy but humble kiss on the back of it.

Jareth did not miss the sly smile that formed on the young Fae's lips. "How interesting" he mused to himself, "Strange and unexpected, but interesting."

As they all walked to the dining room, Desdemonna smiled sympathetically at Sarah who was trying to keep her expression neutral while she was wrestling with the urge to slug the Goblin King.

It wasn't long before Jareth was sharing a meal with Lord Taibaar and his daughter, while Sarah stood obediently at her post behind Jareth, occasionally moving to refill their wine glasses. The conversation was typical and rather unexciting. Jareth conversed with the old man and occasionally threw a few compliments at the obviously bored daughter.

All the while, Sarah stood by, sickened by the idea that the old goat was practically begging for Jareth to take his daughter as his wife. He shamelessly brought up her extensive dowry several times and kept pointing out her good qualities, all the while he kept reminding Jareth how much his people would benefit from establishing trade with the inhabitants of the Goblin City.

Even as he was engaged in conversation, Jareth noticed Desdemonna's gaze kept straying to settle on Sarah. Sarah however, was completely oblivious to the girl's seeming fascination with her. Jareth also noticed that the girl hadn't been quite as receptive to his compliments and attention as he had expected. She seemed rather distant, as if her thoughts were entirely someplace else. By the end of the main course Jareth had noticed the increased frequency at which Desdemonna let her eyes wander over his supposed pageboy.

Utterly curious, Jareth watched as the girl drained her wine glass. As expected, Sarah quickly moved to refill it. As she poured the wine, the young Fae glanced over her shoulder to regard Sarah with wide eyes. When their eyes met the young lady blushed and offered the pageboy a secretive coy smile. Sarah was rather surprised that the young lady would even notice her, while Jareth was doing his damnedest to make a lasting impression, but perhaps the young lady was just inquisitive by nature.

Jareth was rather surprised at what he had just witnessed. Things were not at all going the way he had planned. He had assumed that his flirtatious behavior with the young Fae would fill Sarah with jealousy, however his assumption that Desdemonna would be more than receptive to his attention was proving to be false. It looked as though the young Fae was much more interested in dallying with his "pageboy". Despite the fact that Jareth usually despised it when things didn't go his way, he was rather intrigued by the alternative result.

Sarah tore her eyes away from the girl's questioning gaze just in time to notice that she had nearly overflowed her wine glass. Sarah quickly straightened the decanter and hurried back to her post risking a quick glance at Jareth to see if he had noticed her clumsiness. To her dismay, the arrogant monarch was looking right at her and she could only assume that he had seen her near spill. She winced at the thought of him chiding her later for being careless.

At Jareth's subtle signal Sarah brought out their dessert and served it. As she set the plate down in front of the Desdemonna she tried to ignore another one of Jareth's flirtatious compliments meant for the young Fae.

When Sarah finally served Jareth his dessert it took all her self-control to not smash the dish into his face. Lucky for her she was rather adept at concealing her emotions. There was no way she was going to give that bastard the satisfaction of knowing that she was bothered by his seeming interest in the Young Fae woman.

Sarah clenched her teeth at the sheer discomfort of her situation as she started to walk back to post behind Jareth, when she heard his voice at her back, "Sargonne, why don't you sit by me here at the table, seeing that there are no more courses to be brought out."

Sarah wanted nothing more than to tell him to go to hell and storm out of the room, but she knew that if she did, she would pay for it dearly later. Not to mention, that would be admitting defeat, and only further increase Jareth's already overblown ego. Instead, she silently took a seat beside Jareth, across from Desdemonna.

Jareth watched as the young Fae woman seemed to be pondering the cherry covered confection in front of her. When she finally looked up again Jareth commented, "I hope we are not boring you, Lady Desdemonna, with all this talk of trade?"

The young woman snapped to attention and quickly replied, "Oh no your majesty, you see it's just that my father has instructed me that I should not speak unless I am spoken to."

Jareth flashed her a dazzling smile and replied in a saccharine tone, "Of course my dear."

Sarah fought the impulse to make a gagging noise as her eyes bored into the table linen. She reasoned that if she could manage to keep her head down she might make it through the rest of the meal without losing it. After a few more moments of uninteresting conversation, Sarah felt as though she were being watched, and she looked up to see that Desdemonna's bright eyes were fixed on her again. Sarah glanced to her left, noting that Jareth and the old man were again engrossed in conversation. The young Fae also turned her head as if noticing the very same thing.

Sarah tried to listen to the dull conversation but out of the corner of her eye she saw Desdemonna's eyes lock on her face again as she picked up a cherry by its stem. Sarah couldn't shake the feeling that the Desdemonna was trying to get her attention.

Out of sheer curiosity Sarah made eye contact with the Fae and that's when it happened. Desdemonna held up the cherry and in a most deliberate manner she began to savor it seductively as her eyes locked with Sarah's. Sarah would have had to be intensely stupid to miss implications of the gesture as the girl closed her red lips over the cherry, her eyes blazing with silent invitation.

To say she was stunned was an understatement, but Sarah's dumb stupor was short lived as she felt a hand come to rest on her upper thigh.

For one horrified moment Sarah thought it to be Jareth's hand, but a quick glance confirmed that both his hands were placed above the table, leaving only one possibility.

Sarah's eyes hesitantly met Desdemonna's as the girl flashed her a sultry suggestive smile right before her hand gave Sarah's thigh a rough squeeze.

Jareth saw Sarah jump in alarm before he noticed the young Fae innocently straighten her posture. It didn't take much thought to determine what had just happened. Apparently, the girl had made some sort of advance on Sarah. Although it slightly irked him that his plan to flaunt this girls affections to kindle Sarah's jealousy had fallen apart, he couldn't help but be wildly curious about the resulting scenario.

Sarah's seemingly startled reaction told him that she was uncomfortable with the situation. Perhaps there was a better way to torment Sarah. Jareth swiftly rose to his feet to detract attention from Sarah's startled reaction. He gave Sarah a pointed look before he announced, "Lord Taibaar, Perhaps you'd like to join me in my study for some brandy? We have matters that are best left to be discussed in private."

The old man's eyes nervously drifted to his daughter as Jareth added, "Sargonne is capable of keeping your lovely daughter amused. Sargonne, escort the lady to the game room and wait on her." Jareth quickly lead the old man away, but he looked back at Sarah over his shoulder to catch her unspoken, but obvious look of displeasure.

Desdemonna, on the other hand, could scarcely contain her elation at the prospect of being let alone with "Sargonne". Sarah quietly sighed and led the girl to the game room, as one might proceed to their own execution.

Most Prized Possession

A Labyrinth Story
by Jester3

Part 13 of 42

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