Tired of moving miniatures across a chequered board in a game designed to make those of a lesser intellect feel inferior, Jareth had decided to go off for a wander through his castle. Some people believe that Jareth's entire castle is a magical place, designed to twist the dimensions, warp time, and be larger on the inside than it is on the outside. But of course, some people think Stanley Kubrick was a really good director, which just goes to show how wrong people can be. It has been noted, mostly by lower class people with delusions of grandeur, that a man's home is his castle. What many forget, is that a man's castle, is also his home. It's not just something to look impressive to barely pubescent girls who wander in, nor something in which kings hide while people who should really know better are dying in his name outside, somebody actually has to live here. Washing had to be done. Meals had to be prepared. Of course none of these things were done by Jareth himself, but still, it was a home, and they were done. It's not that Jareth could afford help to do everything, nor was he a powerful enough magician to control everyone that helped him, but, well he was bigger than everyone else here.
He wandered into the laundry room. A laundry was a peculiar breed of creature, of grey-ish skin, and roughly two and a half feet of height. Their eyes appeared to be permanently closed, but this was not the case. Those little flaps near the top of their heads actually were their eyes, though they just looked unhealthily like slits in the skin. Their mouths and noses were combined in a trunk-like organ below their eyes, through which they could smell, taste, produce saliva, and do pretty much anything else you can with your nose and mouth. They could expand to a diameter of about six inches, and contract so tightly as to crush fairly tough metals. All in all it was a handy feature, but it was a bugger when they got bad snots. Well, come on, how would you like it if your snots formed inside your mouth? You think it's bad when you have a cold, and it dribbles onto your upper lip, but come on, we're talking about tasting the insides of your nose, constantly. It's not nice. Although we wouldn't be being accurate in labelling this part of laundry anatomy the "trunk", it sure as hell beats inventing a new word for what we all think of as the trunk-like organ, so trunk it is.
As Jareth entered for the first time in his life, he was faced with a shocking scene before him. Jareth had never questioned how his tights became clean again, he would wear them for a while, send them to the laundry room, and they would come back sparkling clean. He'd always assumed some kind of machinery was used, possibly with salt and cleansing products, but no. His tights were cleaned orally.
At the sight of Jareth's shock coming through the door, several of the laundry creatures took a deep breath, and most wound up almost choking to death on a pair of his tights. Still, there are worse ways to go.
"What are you doing?" asked Jareth, with the dumbfounded politeness normally associated with those who find their partners having extra-martial affairs with same-sex partners.
One of the nearest laundries slurped his pair of tights into his hands before him, then proceeded to reply: "we're cleaning your tights, your majesty".
"I see... but why are you cleaning them... like that?"
The laundry looked at Jareth the way you might look at someone who questioned the way you tie your shoelaces, after tying a perfectly ordinary knot.
"Well," came the eventual reply, "have you got a better idea?"
If Jareth were the type to admit he in fact didn't have a better idea, he would have done so, but he wasn't the type to admit to such a thing. Memories of a million hangovers accompanied by urine stains in which mice had drowned in came flooding back.
"It must be... uh... unpleasant work", he said matter of factly. Truth be told he couldn't give a shit which creature had to suck down all his piss, it was certainly better than letting it give him a rash.
"Oh no, not at all, sir. Actually, I think we all quite enjoy it", replied the laundry, quite truthfully.
Jareth blinked and returned to his bedroom. One of the laundries sucked away happily in the corner.
"How come that lucky swine always gets the semen stains?" complained a jealous co-worker.
TO BE CONTINUED...
I hope that I can say the things I wish I'd said.