Sally had first met Sammy Blake when his first band had played at the union hall two year earlier. At the time she was just starting to develop and able to pass for being eighteen. Once she had gotten in to the hall and listened to the music she know that this was what she wanted to do with her life. She didn’t speak to him for more than three minutes that night, but since the band was still trying to make something of themselves they gave her an address to them to stay in touch. When Sammy got the first letter he was blown away, she had included lyrics to a song that she had been trying to write but the music just wouldn’t come. She received a cassette back from Sammy several weeks later with music on it, the music to the lyrics that she had written. She began to study music and learned to read the sheet music that he sent her back. A friend of her mothers from church gave her singing lessons because Sally claimed that she wanted to join the church choir. She never told anyone about the tapes from Sammy, she would wait until no one was home to sing her lyrics along with the music he provided into her father’s old reel-to-reel recorder so that she could send them back to Sammy. This went back and forth between them as the years past, until she received the letter that changed her life. Sammy wrote her that he had played the recording of her singing for some people from a record label and they loved the sound. They asked the band to come to a club in Chicago for a showcase. Sammy needed her to meet him and sing with the band live. The promoter from the label had told him that if they sounded as good in person he could book them as the opening act on a national tour and set them up to record their first record. Sally was only eight weeks from graduating high school, but she would have to give all of that up in order to gain the one thing she wanted most in life. She took all of the money she had saved from her eighteenth birthday and packed up as much clothes as possible in her car with out her mother noticing. She brought one or two pieces of clothing down to the car at a time several times a day for almost a week. The day of the audition she left for school at the normal time and just started driving to Chicago. She figured by the time her family noticed she was missing later that day she would already be there.
She had dealt with the cold gray winter day for the entire ride north, but by the time she crossed over from Indiana to Illinois she was driving in almost blizzard conditions. She was forced to slow down so much that she did not locate the club until after eight o’clock that night. She was cold and freezing from the weather, but knowing how close to her dream she was had her burning up inside. With the miserable weather the club was practically deserted inside. She saw a couple of bands milling around, but no one who looked like they worked for a record label, and she did not see Sammy anywhere.
She flagged the bartender over to her, “Do you know if Sammy Blake from Blake Seven is here?”
“You Sally?” He asked taking a slip of paper out of his shirt pocket. “He left a message.”
The paper had a phone number on it with her name and Sammy’s.
As she looked up to ask the bartender about a phone he pointed across the room towards the bathrooms before she could even open her mouth. She had to run out to her car to scrape together enough change to make the call from the pay phone; she just kept reminding herself that once they had a record deal she could get a cell phone. After the third ring Sammy answered the phone.
“Sally that you?” he asked not waiting for he to speak.
“Yeah, where are you guys, I’m at the club, we are going to miss the showcase.”
“Don’t worry kiddo,” Sammy said. “I talked to Joey at the label, they are postponing the showcase until tomorrow cause of the storm. We are stuck in Iowa, but we should be able to get back by early tomorrow afternoon.”
“What am I going to do until then? I don’t have a place to stay.” Sally whined.
“Relax, I have a buddy that works nights at a motel a couple of miles down from the club. He is expecting you; he won’t charge you for the room until after we get back. We can pick you up there and head for the club.”
Sally copied down the address for the motel and the direction to how to get there and hung up the phone. She knew the longer that she waited the worse the roads were going to get. She headed out immediately, but only made it half way before her car died on her. With the storm closing in on her she worried for her safety for the first time all day. Once she got out of her car though she could see through the glare of the streetlights on the swirling snows a gas station up ahead, it was only a few hundred yards away and a quick run would give her a chance to get help. She might have to leave her car on the side of the road until tomorrow, but in this storm she did not figure anyone would mind. She grabbed her extra jacket out of the back and started walking off towards the gas station. She was walking for ten minutes by the time she realized that the glare from the snow had distorted her perspective and it was farther to the gas station than she thought. She stopped to catch her breath.
“Are you alone?” the voice hissed.
Sally spun around and gazed into the alley to face him. She had seen men come back from the coalmines day after day, covered in dust and sweat so dirty that it would take two showers just to get them back to looking human. But until that day she never knew what it really mean to be dirty. The glaze of snow that had been falling heavy for the last several hours had placed a pristine layer of white over everything else, but she knew nothing could cover up the pitch black grim of this man. His hair was long and scraggly not just unclean but neglected to the point that he appeared to be almost a shambling corpse.
“Who are you? What do you want?” she shrieked.
He lunged forward and collapsed on top of her, holding her down as she flailed to get loose. His long nails clawed at her cheeks and a trickle of blood started to warm her face. She felt the energy slip from her limbs and her ability to fight back slow faded away. He sat on top of her, slowly smelling her as if she were a fine wine. Taking in the things that made her unique. And when she thought that she could finally understand what was going on reality slipped away. He sat up and pulled the matted hair out of his face and Sally watched as his teeth grew, fangs slipping out to reach for her. Leaning over her she could feel the breath drawn in through his nose to try and suck the life out of her. As his face reached with in an inch of her he froze, she could see out of the corner of her eye a silver spark sprout from his right side. She watched as his eyes lost focus and seemed to take on a misted quality.
That was when she heard the voice like pooling syrup. “Really Scuzz, I’d thought we made it clear to you decades ago, you are no longer welcome in this city.”
Slowly her eyes began to focus again and she saw him, he stood so tall, even with her sprawled out flat on her back on the ground she could tell he would tower over her. The silver spark she had seen was the tip of the thin sword that he wielded in his left hand. She crawled back to brace herself against the alley wall to prevent her from completely collapsing in the grimy snow-covered street. She watched as this man with an almost effortless shift of the wrist lifted her attacker aloft on the point of his sword. She stared at his arms hidden under the black leather of his overcoat, with the frilled cuff peaking out of it. She looked up to his face and in the glare of the snow she tried to know if he was really as pale as she thought. His faced surrounded with a puff of ash blonde hair.
Her rescuer leaned in close and whispered in the creature’s ear. “My Lord needs to speak with you Scuzz.” He purred.
The alley seemed to glow brighter as she huddled against the wall and soon she witnessed an even more impressive man stride out towards her. She could feel herself drawn to him, wanting him with every inch of her being. Sally’s vision blurred and images of herself wrapping her body around him flooded her mind. When he spoke she felt her body respond to the core of her being, gone where all the thoughts of what she wanted to do with her life, she only wanted to be possessed by him.
“Well done Jareth, you have located one of the interlopers.” The beautiful man chanted.
“Yes my lord, we have a history with this one.” Jareth replied. “I believe he will contain the knowledge that we need.”
Sally was still a virgin, she had fallen deeply in love with Sammy from the moment that she had met him and over the last two years her love had grown. She knew that he was the man that she would finally give herself to and now that she was here their life together could begin. But now as she looked at this man in gray, his fine dressed form with high cheekbones and strong nose. She ached for him to ignore the others and take her. He was beautiful and she felt warm tears run down her face to mix with the blood. He glowed from the inside and cast warmth across the entire alley.
“So Scuzz, you have returned. I know that you remember our last meeting. You are certainly not strong enough to defy me yourself. On whose orders have you returned here?” He demanded.
“Lord Robin, I assure you this is an accident. I simply have lost my way. I was hungry and could not resist stopping here to feed. I did not mean to violate the truce.” The creature groveled.
The glow seemed to intensify and Sally felt a fever pitch wave of ecstasy claim her body and soul. Through the haze of want she heard the vile creature scream as if an all-consuming flame was burning him.
“Do not lie to me!” Lord Robin hissed. “Your end will come either quickly or with much agony. All I ask is the truth for once pass your carnivorous lips.”
The creature they called Scuzz curled up in a ball as he was released from the tip of the sword, he groveled by making a hissing noise, which tore as Sally’s ears.
“Bathory… He has come here, he seeks to challenge you so as to weaken any chance that your father has to retaliate.” Scuzz whimpered.
“Does his Lord and Master know that he has come here?” Lord Robin raged.
“I do not believe so, he said that once you are out of the way the Master will have no further excuse not to throw away the vile treaty.”
Robin reached down and raised the crumbled Scuzz back up, holding aloft by the throat he glanced over his shoulder at the dark figure of Jareth behind him. The sword once again flashed out and in one clear stroke struck Scuzz’s entire head from his body. Sally watched in amazement as the useless body dropped to the ground and Robin cradled the head in his hand.
“Maybe now I should call you Yorick?” Robin said to the loose head as it rested on his palm. “Please dispose of this Jareth. I am tired of them coming back to disturb us.” With a flick of his wrist he tossed the head to Jareth.
“What of her?” Jareth asked.
For the first time Robin turned his gaze on Sally. She could see deep into his eye, warm forest glens with soft grasses that she could stretch out on as he made love to her for days.
“Was she infected?” Robin asked of Jareth.
“I am not sure my Lord, I do not know how much time he had with her before I captured him.”
“It is best that we be careful then. You will be able to handle things from here. I must off to find T, she will need to take a message to my Father that the truce has been broken.” Robin pronounced.
She watched him leave and could feel the joy and rapture pulled away with him. Once he was gone from her sight she felt empty and hollow, like something had been ripped from her and could never be returned. It was a violation that she would have to endure for the rest of her life. Slowly Jareth knelt by her side. She could feel herself warming again in his close embrace. Like an addict it did not fill the hollow place inside of her, but provided an overwhelming distraction that she could not resist. Unlike the feeling that she had received from Robin this was not the longing for him, but Jareth was filling her up directly from himself. The waves crashed over her again and again as his hands caressed her face. Once his strong hands reached her soft neck she nuzzled in close to him for the moment it took for the twitch of his wrist to snap her spine.