A Labyrinth Fanfiction
Chapter 17: Bonding Spells
"A marital bonding spell cast over a pair of fae can be beneficial in many ways. Most famous of which is the increased sense of touch when with their spouse. However studies completed in the area have proven that the couple also share the ability to sense each other's emotions to a degree and are able to influence the other's emotions. Should one spouse become agitated, the other has the ability to project a feeling of calm to help their mate. Other studies, such as that preformed by Hewell and Lewhel, have proven that spouses are also able to tap into each other's magical reservoir.
"When mated spouses are in need of magical support, their bond provided by the spell allows them to take from their partner. While this can be cause for alarm in newly bonded spouses, most of the evaluated subjects agreed that they grew used to the sensation eventually. Another advantage to shared magical powers is each spouse takes on the unique ability of the other, albeit not as proficiently as the original owner, but to some degree. For example, a spouse with the ability to levitate would be able to share the talent with their partner. However the partner may only be able to levitate for short periods of time, or only be able to levitate a short distance."
Jareth let his eyes drift lazily over the passage several times. He'd taken several books from King Olseth's library and had settled in his own study in the Goblin City to read them, so that Lord Cumberland couldn't accuse him of being absent. However he was finding it extremely difficult to stay awake while reading the dry material. He shook his head to wake up a bit and rubbed his eyes. This was important to Sarah and he needed make sure he was taking in the information, not just skimming over it.
He reminded himself that this particular book had looked promising because it had been written as a report to show the findings of various studies done on fae couples' magic. While Sarah wasn't a fae, he hoped there would be something to glean from the text anyway. Studiously, he went back over the last few paragraphs that he'd been nodding off to and an idea began to form. The last paragraph mentioned that fae spouses could borrow each other's magic. Perhaps this could be true of a fae/human coupling as well? If he were to marry Sarah and have the marital bonding spell cast on them, maybe she could borrow his magic to go back to the Aboveground for short periods of time?
Jareth was wide-awake now as he went through the paragraph once more and read the next as well. He'd have to study marital bonding spells to find out more on how they worked, but he was fairly certain that this would work. Moving quickly, he rose from his desk and was just about to perform a transportation spell to the Sylvan King's domain when Lord Cumberland entered, not even bothering to knock. "King Jareth," he addressed the blond fae. "I hope I'm not interrupting." It was clear from the look on his face that he really didn't care if he was interrupting.
"Not at all, Lord Cumberland," Jareth replied, trying to cover up his extreme displeasure. "What is it that you need?"
"Nothing really. I just came to inform you that your court date has been set eight days hence."
"That's courteous of you, and much sooner than I expected."
Lord Cumberland smirked dangerously. "Once I explained the situation to a few of the council members who I happen to be on very good terms with, they saw the need to expedite things. After all, who would want a defective king to rule for longer than necessary?"
Jareth glowered at the shorter fae before him. It was obvious that Lord Cumberland was trying to provoke some kind of reaction, but Jareth was determined to not give him the pleasure. "I thank you for the information, Lord Cumberland," Jareth said through gritted teeth. "But I would request that you leave now seeing as I was in the middle of something that should not be put off much longer."
"Ah, that's too bad, King Jareth. I was hoping we could chat. However, if you insist, I'll just be off." He turned to leave, but halfway out the door he turned back abruptly. "Oh, just one more thing. You should speak with King Olseth. I believe he might have some information which might be of interest to you." His smirk this time was down right sinister and Jareth found himself shuddering. "See you in eight days, Goblin King," he left for good this time, and Jareth wasted no time in transporting himself to the Sylvan King's home.
o O o O o O o
"We need to tell him," Olseth said gently rubbing his wife's hand.
"I thought for sure that it would work," she mumbled.
"It's the prejudice. There are too many who would rather that humans stay locked up or in menial positions."
"Still… it's very discouraging to see such an advanced race such as ours be blinded by hate and bigotry," she sighed and turned her hand so that it was holding her husbands and squeezed. "I'll tell Jareth. I feel responsible somehow."
"Tell me what?" a familiar voice called out from the open parlor room door.
Both monarchs looked up to see the King of the Goblins standing in the archway looking very dark. He was wearing all black aside from the sliver sickle shaped pendent that hung from his neck. A mantle hung from his shoulders covering the thick leather chest armor he wore as well as the dark leggings and regal boots. King Olseth and Queen Athena recognized the outfit as the one he used most when a call came for a wished away child. His blond mane was teased into a formidable height and overall, he gave the appearance of a large cat who had poofed himself up to appear more intimidating… a very angry hissing and spitting large cat. "Jareth," Athena addressed him first. "Why don't you come in and sit down?"
"What were you going to tell me, Aunt?" he asked again, ignoring the invitation to be seated.
The fair-faced woman sighed and seemed to slump slightly. "We didn't win custody over Sarah," she said simply.
Jareth merely stared at her for a moment before literally punching the doorframe and swearing expletive after expletive. It seemed that most of them were directed towards Lord Cumberland's parentage and the rest dealt with what he was full of. Olseth grimaced slightly at some of the choice words while Athena's eyes widened. They were sure that some of these he was making up and if that was the case, he was quite creative indeed. Eventually, he punched the doorframe once more and stopped swearing quite abruptly as a different kind of howl came from his mouth. This time it was one of physical pain and he cradled his hand protectively afterwards. Athena shook her head and huffed out a breath before walking over to him and gently taking his hand to examine it. She was talented in the healing arts and could tell by the way Jareth was holding it that the hand was most likely broken. "Come on then, lets get you fixed up," she said, not even mentioning the dent in her doorframe.
It was an hour later when Jareth, hand wrapped tightly in a splint while Athena's magic worked, was sitting across from Olseth and Athena drinking tea in the parlor. He'd calmed a bit and had already told them of Lord Cumberland's visit earlier that afternoon. "Why were you originally coming to visit us?" Olseth asked after Jareth finished.
"Oh, yes! I was originally coming to tell you I think I found something that will help Sarah go back to the Aboveground. I wanted you to take a look at it and get your ideas." At this he pulled the heavy tomb that he'd brought with forward from seemingly nowhere.
The blond fae opened to the correct page the flipped it around for Olseth to read. The elder fae studied the passage for a few minutes than nodded. "This does sound familiar," he murmured. "I can't be positive, but I think this might be it."
"You think it'll work even though Sarah's not fae?"
Olseth nodded. "I do believe so. I'd have to double check some of the research I have in the library on marital bonds, but yes."
"When were you doing research on marital bonds?" Athena asked.
Olseth blushed slightly. "It was shortly after we were bonded."
"And?" she pushed.
"And I was concerned about how… intense your touch felt."
Athena now blushed and nodded. "I see. I remember… the first few years really were quite spectacular, weren't they?" she smiled.
Olseth nodded, a grin on his face as well. Jareth's eyes flickered back and forth between the two for a moment and he thought they might kiss, but then they seemed to remember where they were and looked back at him. He was glad for them, that they still felt such love for each other even after centuries of marriage, but at the moment he thought his and Sarah's situation to be a bit more dire, so he cleared his throat changed the topic. "What are we going to do about Sarah? The trial isn't for another eight days. I don't think I could leave Sarah that long in the council's hands."
"You may have no other choice, Jareth," Olseth said directly. "If you want to have even a remote chance of the council ruling in your favor, then you must be on your best behavior and Sarah will have to stay where she is."
"That is not an option," Jareth deadpanned.
"I'm afraid it's going to have to be, Jareth," Athena spoke. "The council was quite adamant during the custody hearing."
"You must think of what's best for your kingdom, boy," Olseth reminded sternly. "I believe we've had this discussion before."
"We have, and I know," Jareth let out a breath of air in defeat. He slumped forward and let his arms rest on his knees. "Is there any way of my being able to see her before the trial?"
"Perhaps," Athena replied thoughtfully. "I'd have to talk to someone who owes me a favor, but it can be arranged.
Athena put a sympathetic hand on his shoulder. "Give me three days, and then you'll be able to see her."
Jareth nodded and allowed Athena to comfort him for a while before he turned to Olseth. "Might as well get started going over that research."
Olseth smiled and stood to lead the way to the library.
o O o O o O o
Five days. It had been Five days now that Sarah had been in 'protective custody' under the council and even though she was in gilded cage, it was still a cage nonetheless. She hadn't been allowed out of the room the Guard had led her to aside from going to the bathroom, which was actually attached to her room. She had been sure that she would have to put up with Lord Cumberland and his insults or similar fare from the Guard, but she was surprised to learn that the Guard were fair and decent and took their job seriously. There was one young fae in particular named Antony who brought her books and talked to her for short periods of time as well as bringing her food and a couple changes of clothes.
However, despite Antony's attempts at keeping her occupied, she was feeling restless. She wanted to go outside and breath some fresh air, maybe take a walk. That, most likely, was not going to happen though. Sarah sighed and settled back in the chair near the fireplace, her book laying facedown on her lap. A knock at the door startled her though and she sat up suddenly, dumping the book on the floor. "Come in," she called out as she stood and scooped up the fallen book.
Antony poked his head in, "You have a visitor, miss," he said before stepping back and allowing entry to the last person she wanted to see right now.
"You look well," Lord Cumberland said striding into the room. "Tea, Antony," he ordered back at the guard.
Sarah glared at the dark haired fae. "What do you want? You can't possibly think that I'll sit with you and share a nice cup of tea over some light chatter?"
"Of course not, the tea is for me, and I came to inform you that King Jareth's trial will be in five days hence."
"So why do you need tea then? You've said what you've come to say." She folded her arms over her chest.
"Because I wish to know how you've managed to ensnare him so thoroughly."
This caught Sarah by surprise and her face showed it. "What?" she asked.
"King Jareth is not the first to fall for a mortal's charms, and I want to know what spell you've cast over him."
"Magic has nothing to do with how Jareth and I feel for each other," she said firmly.
"Then what did you use to bribe him? Or was it that you blackmailed him instead?"
"Why are you so sure that he couldn't love me all by himself?"
"Because it's not done!" Cumberland said in a tone that bordered on shouting. "Fae do not love humans. Humans are vile beings who are fit for nothing more than to be the lowest of servants."
"Because they're worthless, dirty creatures!"
Sarah raised an eyebrow at the fae. She thought he might have some serious unresolved issues regarding humans. "We're not all like that," she replied quietly.
"Of course you are! All humans are liars, cheats, and thieves! They manipulate and toy with the emotions! They are despicable vermin!"
"Who was it?" Sarah asked now convinced that it was one human being that had started all of this hatred in the fae before her.
"What?" he snapped.
"Who was it that hurt you? Prejudice may be passed down from generation to generation, but you have a level of hate for humans all your own. There must have been someone in particular who hurt you."
"That's none of your business!" he shouted.
Sarah held up a peaceful hand. "That's fine, you don't have to tell me, but please don't paint me with the same color as the one who hurt you. I'm not like them. I would never hurt Jareth."
Lord Cumberland studied her for a moment before huffing once and walking out the door. On the way out, he collided with poor Antony who spilled the tea tray all over the floor. "Watch where you're going!" Lord Cumberland growled before stalking away.
Antony stared at the fae until he rounded a corner. "What was that about?" he asked Sarah.
Sarah shrugged and sat down in her chair again. "Interested in losing another game of chess?" she smirked playfully.
Antony smiled as well. "Let me clean this up first then we'll see who's losing."