• The sun dawned on a morning without joy or happiness the next, for Cordelia had disappeared, under quite suspicious circumstances, in the night. Everyone in the palace, including their majesties the king and queen, was on a frantic search for the missing princess, hollering her name until their voices could muster no more than whispers but to no avail.

    The children of the servants had been told to stay in the servants' quarters, completely unaware of the disastrous event that had occurred the previous night; completely unaware, that is, until Tony, on his way back from the kitchen with food for himself and the others, saw a strange specter, in the shape of a young girl who was about Cordelia's age, appear before him.

    He dropped the tray of food on the floor and shot off to find a good hiding place: behind a large vase, in a gargantuan flower pot, under the vast table in the dining room, but the specter seemed to follow him wherever he went.

    After a while, when it was clear that trying to run away would be a fruitless venture, Tony finally stopped and addressed the apparation in a tiny, even if brave, voice. "What do you want from me?"

    "I only require your help and that of your friends as well," the ghostly image replied.

    "Help? What for?"

    "Your princess has wished herself away to a distant land. In the legends of this place, one says that 'When a princess comes to our realm of her own free will, only six magical beings can bring her home. And that is only if they can break the spell laid upon the fair maiden by the Goblin King."

    "The Goblin King?" asked Tony, still trying to take in what the lady had said. "I thought he wasn't real. Sam told me so."

    "He is as real as the nose on your face."

    Tony rubbed his nose to make sure it was still there.

    "That also means that your princess is the noe from the legend, and that you and your friends are the magical ones destined to save her."

    The girl began to fade into shimmering nothingness.

    "I don't have much time left. He's found me! Go! Tell your friends my mystic words. I know they may seem hard to believe but every word is truthful."

    "Wait!" Tony called out, for he didn't want the lady to leave, "I don't even know your name. How can my friends listen to the words said if they don't even know who said them?"

    "My name is Sarah!" she called just as her ethereal form dissolved into thin air.

    After breaking the news of Cordelia's disappearance and Sarah's prophecy to his friends, with exasperated sighs from Giselle and Toby who had wanted to hear what the real words were and an "Utter nonsense!" from Sam, Tony and the other children set about making preparations to go to "Goblinland", as they had decided to call it, and retrieve their missing princess.

    Robyn, who felt a little responsible for the princess making the wish that had sent her away, suggested that they should gather the essentials for their trip and ask if they could sleep in the princess' room that night. Sam, who still thought this was all a made up story, said, "If this story is to be believed, I think Robyn's plan for travel is ideal. However, in order for this to work we all have to combine our efforts."

    And so they did. Giselle and Toby gathering up traveling clothes, food, toys and anything else they thought might be "essentials" for the long journey that night, Sam taking inventory of all the items that were found, Jasmine and Tony stuffing these items into small satchels that the children could carry on their backs, and Robyn politely requesting of their parents if they could sleep in the princess' chamber that night. (This request was answered positively considering everyone just thought that the children wanted to sleep there because they missed Cordelia so much.)

    Later that night, Jasmine, Giselle, Same, Toby, Tony, and Robyn, who was holding Gawain in her arms, were all lying side by side in the princess' canopy bed with barely enough room for themselves and their luggage. Robyn had said, "If the princess wished to be taken away at night, then all we have to do is wish ourselves away tonight in order to find her. But just in case we take longer than one night, we'd better leave a note for everyone so they don't grieve us."

    Robyn, who was the closest to the nightstand, laid the note that Sam had written for them all gently beside the candle on top of the nightstand. Then she said, "Hands on your things everybody. I'm about to make the wish."

    The others followed her command, and after recieving a signal from the others that they were ready, Robyn spoke the words: "I wish the goblins would come and take us away, right now."

    She blew out the candle and snuggled down into the bed, praying that this venture wasn't all for naught.

    The other children followed suit just as they heard strange noises coming from the floor below. 'Yes!' thought Robyn before she finally surrendered to peaceful slumber.

    To be continued...(Note: We'll meet Jareth in the next part, so stay tuned!)