- LABYRINTH II
...             ...


CHAPTER X

Hoggle, Sir Didymus, and Ludo all sat on the edges of their grimy beds, their heads propped up by their fists, and their eyes gazing emptily at the ground.

            Hoggle had the urge many times to jump up and bang on the metal bars on the opening in the door that served as the only light source for their room, but the urge was soon quenched when he realized the futility in such an action.

            The only interesting thought that passed through his mind within the dark and mindless scenery of the room was a question that had been plaguing him for many years.

            Why did Jareth wait 'til now to come'n get us?

            Four years Hoggle had hidden in the forest, waiting with apprehension for the moment in which the Goblin King would carry out his revenge.  Hoggle had almost forgotten about his troubles, when, for no apparent reason, goblins infiltrated his home two days preceding his present situation and roughly dragged him before Jareth.  Back to the Goblin City.  Back to face his former stupidity.

            I should've listened to my father.

            Not only was he surprised that Jareth had waited so long, he was also troubled by the capture of Ludo and Sir Didymus.  Yes, those two had helped Sarah defeat Jareth four years ago, but it was only Hoggle who had betrayed the Goblin King.  Hoggle had been Jareth's righthandman, so to speak, and Hoggle had become a traitor by helping Sarah, who had shown more concern for him than the Goblin King ever had.

            Jareth would, thought Hoggle long ago, think of Ludo and Sir Didymus as mere nuisances, and not real threats, while Hoggle would be an everpresent thorn in the man's side.  He had thought sountil now.

            He got up from his seated position on the bed and paced anxiously about the room.  How long, he wondered, before Jareth would let them out?  Never was the most feasible answer.

            "I'm already sick'a this grime, this black wall, and this dark room," he mumbled as he walked.  Didymus and Ludo gave him an odd look before retreating back into their own thoughts.

            Yet, it wasn't all blackness.  Which was quite odd.  Hoggle had quickly taken note of the small mirror on the wall next to the door.  It wasn't so much an odd occurrence to see a mirror in a dungeon, but this mirror was definitely unusual.  It was an ovalshaped mirror with a beautiful golden frame.  In the frame were carved various images, inlaid jewels adding to its beauty in various spots.

            Hoggle looked at his spotless reflection in the mirror.  Even the world on the other side looked more pleasing to him than this one.  Left was right and right was leftperhaps things were different on the other side of the mirror.  Perhaps it wasn't really a dungeon in the place of his reflection's inhabitancy.  Or perhaps he was just desperate to think of something besides his awful predicament.

            "That mirror really is quite beautiful," Sir Didymus suddenly remarked to Hoggle.  "It seems quite out of place, as well."

            Hoggle was surprised by the fox's sudden vocalization and turned around.  "I was thinkin' the same thing," he replied.  "Jareth didn't use'ta have mirrors in his dungeons."

            "Did you once live in this wretched palace, Sir Hoggle?" the fox queried.

            "Yeah," Hoggle replied despondently as he thought of his past.  "Before you met me, I worked for Jareth."

            "I didst not know of your former dealings with the Goblin King," Sir Didymus replied, his tone easing into one of curbed anger.

            "Well, I don't talk about it much," Hoggle replied as he sat back down, displeased at Didymus's bitter reaction toward his statement.  "I wouldn't work for him again if my life depended on it."

            "I thought that our past dealings with Sarah were the prime cause of our being captured," Didymus said as he rose with dignity from the bed, "but it seems that our friendship with you may be the main cause of all of this."

            "Oh, don't get all huffy on me," Hoggle answered the seething fox. He hid his face in his hands.  "I ain't proud of nothin' I done.  It's in the past.  Leave it there, okay?"

            Sir Didymus seemed ashamed of his anger and sat back down.  After a few moments of silence, he declared, "I wonder why the Goblin King would put mirrors in his dungeons if he hast not done so before."

            "I don't know," Hoggle sighed.  "Probably 'cause he uses it like his crystals to spy on folks in the castle.  Maybe he don't trust no one after what I did.  For all I know, he just has'em so's he can stare at himself whenever he wants."

            Ambrosius, Sir Didymus' dog, began to whine.  Sir Didymus began to pat the trembling Ambrosius on the back.  "It's alright, boy.  We shall find a way out of here, soon enough."

            They all turned their heads as they heard the approaching footsteps of the guard.

            "I'm comin' in so, duhon't try nothin' idiotical or stupid such," came his gruff voice from the other side of the door. Sir Didymus's ears perked up and he began to growl. Ambrosius whimpered in response and ran to the corner. Ludo looked up and back down again, for he knew as Hoggle did that the meal ahead was just another form of torture.

            The goblin guard opened the door with a creak and carelessly dropped the plates of food to the ground. He kicked them to the prisoners. One plate slid in front of Ambrosius. Ambrosius slowly came out of hiding to sniff the gruel, and, even with his never-ending appetite, he turned his nose up in disgust before going back into hiding.

            "I will not eat this this cruel concoction," declared the fox as he picked up his own dripping plate.  He watched Ambrosius' reaction and added, "See, even Ambrosius won't eat it. I will not reduce myself to something even a dog will not do."

            "Shuddup yous big ol' squirrel yous. I not takin' no lip from a big bal o' hair, yous see now, and I's don' wanna hears a smidgety of a peeper from yous. Goddat?"

            To Hoggle's surprise, Didymus said nothing in response. Perhaps it was because he knew as well that it would do no good.  Nothing would. It seemed they were stuck here for life. If they could not bear it after a few days, how were they going to stand it for what could possibly be the rest of their lives?

            The goblin began to chuckle to himself as he cleaned the mirror. "What's so funny, wartface?" Hoggle asked mockingly. If he was going to be stuck here, he might as well get some fun out of it.  He knew the habits of goblins like the back of his own hand, and that meant knowing how to control them.  He might get something useful out of the creature; most likely he'd get something humorous.

            The goblin turned around clumsily, clearly full of fury.

            "Da smardmout eh? Yous a real funny one yous is. I's goin' to tell yous whad' I laughin' 'bout lumpy'o'nosy rosy. Here's a real good haha for yous hid majesticalness, da Gobblin' King gots da pretty girl, Lady Sarah, and he's a goin' to "  He stopped short and covered his mouth, realizing his foolish disposal of information.

            Great flying warthogs! Hoggle exclaimed in his mind.  I did get something useful out of him!  Hoggle made gesticulated hand motions.  "Go on, go on you stupid troll, you've told us so much, itd be pointless to stop now. What about Sarah?"

            "Oh noooos, yous not goin' to pull da sheepbahh over my eye, oh noos yous don'. Yous tricked Hogwash and made tell da Kingdom's secr secr hushhush story. I's not goin' ta say no more. For dat you gets no gobbleups tonigh'. See how much you hahas den."

            With that he left the room and locked the door behind him. Hoggle could hear the goblin sing as his voice and footsteps faded away:

 

                        "Lumpy'o'nosy rosy,

                        Han't got no penny fo' a posy,

                        Spend hid night in a dirty ol' dungeon,

                        Livin' off seeweed and grungeon.

 

                        Lumpy'o'nosy rosy,

                        Sho' hope yous cell's rightful cozy,

                        Cause you gonna be heres a long, long time,

                        Probably untils you die!"

Jennifer Connelly     David Bowie    Jim Henson            C    C