Continuing Tales

Most Prized Possession

A Labyrinth Story
by Jester3

Part 2 of 42

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Most Prized Possession

Sarah Williams filled her hands with the icy water from the faucet and rinsed her sun-bronzed face. She looked up to meet her own bright hazel green eyes in the small dorm bathroom mirror that hung on the blue tiled wall just over the tiny sink. Her silky dark hair hung past her shoulders, still damp on the ends. She was wearing a faded gray tank top that had the word "Hartford" embossed in dark gray block letters across her chest.

Her makeshift pajamas also consisted of navy blue mesh soccer shorts. Her long legs were tan and she had stopped bothering with slippers a long time ago. As she applied her whitening toothpaste to her toothbrush, she heard her roommate's melodious voice coming from the adjacent bedroom they shared, "Hey Sarah can I borrow one of your books?"

Without a second thought Sarah replied, "Sure, just grab one off my book shelf."

Kayla's blue eyes scanned the shelf of paperbacks when one book in particular caught her eye. It was a small, red leather-bound book, and the flash of the gleaming gold letters captured her attention. The title was simply stated in bold letters.

The Labyrinth.

No author, and no fancy images were printed upon the cover.

There was a momentary silence as Sarah began brushing her teeth, then the familiar voice asked, "What's this Labyrinth book about?" Sarah's motions ceased instantly. She froze, trying to ignore the cold dread that crept up her spine. It was ridiculous, the whole thing had happened almost six years ago. If it even happened. Despite the Underground's seeming realness, she often wondered if it had all been some elaborate dream concocted by her overactive imagination. She had to let go of her suspicions and stop living in the past.

Sarah took a shaky breath and replied, "Nothing...just an old fairy tale..."

Kayla responded, "A fairy tale? Cool. Mind if I read it for a bit before I go to bed?"

Sarah tried to suppress the jitters that were plaguing her insides as she spit into the sink. She wiped her mouth and face with her towel and walked into their room determined to not let what was most likely a vivid fantasy control her life. "Suit yourself...just do me a favor and DON'T read it out loud."

Never hurts to be prudent, she mused to herself.

Kayla flipped through the book, noticing to her dismay there were no pictures on the inside either, "Why not?"

Sarah grabbed her latest copy of Cosmopolitan and flopped down on her own bed and replied rather testily, "Because I'm tired of hearing that stupid story, that's why."

Kayla shook her head and mused, "You're in a mood lately...What are you on the rag or something?"

Sarah turned on her side, opening the issue to the agony column, "No, I'm just stressed over these stupid midterms."

Kayla sighed, "Yeah, tell me about it. I'm not even going to bother studying for Organic Chem. I'm gonna fail anyway, so why waste a perfectly good weekend studying?"

Sarah didn't say anything and just nodded. Kayla shook her head without even glancing at Sarah, "I don't know why you read that trash. They just keep rehashing the same articles over and over...How to drive a man crazy...How to turn him on...Male sex secrets...same shit, different issue."

Sarah ignored her criticism and murmured absently, "I like reading the agony columns. People are such freaks, makes me feel...normal." Kayla just shook her head and began reading the small red leather bound book.

Less than a half hour later Sarah was half asleep as Kayla was engrossed in the young heroine's first encounter with the Goblin King. Kayla didn't even take her eyes off the book as she mused aloud. "Sar, this book's not bad. Sort of funny though, the way they describe the princess, she sounds sort of like you." Sarah nodded in her slumber and murmured something unintelligible.

Kayla read on, and after a few minutes she gave a low whistle and giggled, "Hey, the Goblin king sounds mighty fine."

Sarah stirred at the comment and sleepily demanded, "What?"

Kayla laughed, "The goblin king...he sounds hot."

Sarah was suddenly fully awake, but she wasn't alert or fast enough to stop what came next.

Kayla turned her head towards Sarah and said jokingly, "Mmmmm...I wish the Goblin King would come and take me away right now."

It was as if Kayla had spoken the words in slow motion, but there was absolutely nothing Sarah could do to stop them.

Immediately the lights in the room blinked out and Sarah heard the ominous low rumbling of thunder nearby. In a sheer moment of panic Sarah tried to scramble to her feet and get to Kayla. In her haste, she tripped over Kayla's free weights and went sprawling onto the floor with a resounding, "Owwww...ommpf!" Sarah's body screamed in pain and protest as she forced herself on her hands and knees.

As she brushed the dark strands of hair out of her face, lightening flashed illuminating Kayla's now empty bed.

Sarah felt her strength leave her, and it was replaced by cold raw fear. Her eyes had already glazed over with stinging tears as she frantically searched Kayla's side of the room through the darkness.

Her voice broke as she forced the word out in a choked whisper past her trembling lips, "...Kayla?" Sarah suddenly felt the distinct sensation of being watched as all the tiny hairs on the back of her neck stood to attention. Sarah clung to false hope as she turned her eyes slightly to her right praying she would see Kayla's bare feet complete with her silver painted toenails.

Instead her eyes fell on a pair of black leather boots braced shoulder's width apart. Her mind reeled in panic protesting the sight before her very eyes, "No! no no no no no, this isn't happening!"

But it was.

Most Prized Possession

A Labyrinth Story
by Jester3

Part 2 of 42

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