of Souls Part 4 of 5
Xena Fanfiction, Xena fanfic, Xena fan fiction, Xena and
Gabrielle fanfiction, Xena fiction
The following story contains spoilers from season six episodes. It takes
place after my Changes of Heart series. You don’t
have to read it, but you might enjoy it. It’s an alt story,
which means women in love with women, so beware. These
characters belong to Ren Pics. I think that about covers it.
stories are accompaniments to the season six episodes of Path of
through When Fates
Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bonding of Souls
Part 4 of 5
NEST (set after 'Path of Vengeance')
Now I know how my father
felt... She’s gone. She just walked away. I couldn’t do
anything to stop it. What the hell, she’s a grown woman. And
isn’t that just what my mother said about me? They
couldn’t lock me up. I was a grown woman free to do what I
wanted to do – make my own choices... Damn it I wish they
were alive. I’d go back home and tell them I understand.
Xena’s voice brought
Gabrielle from her thoughts.
"Oh nothing really. Just...
remembering, I guess."
Gabrielle watched as Xena
straddle the bench with two mugs of ale.
could both use it tonight," she said as she slid the cup
over the wood table they sat. Xena lightly pushed
Gabrielle’s hair away from the cut she got in the brawl with
Varia. "Swellings gone down. Might not even bruise."
Gabrielle said as she held back her tears while removing
Xena’s hand carefully, "I was hoping to forget about
"You might have lost
Gabrielle, but it worked out in the end," Xena countered.
"Like me, on those rare occasions - you might have lost,
but you were never beaten. Not for a second."
Gabrielle didn’t respond.
She just looked into the bottom of her ale after taking a few
"Come on, Gabrielle.
What’s really going on?" the warrior asked.
Gabrielle swished the ale
around in her mug. "I don’t know. I feel like I failed
you. I failed Eve. Maybe if I had won then Eve might have
stuck around for awhile… I just don’t feel much like a
‘father figure’ is all. Fathers are strong and brave –
they’d kill for their children if need be. Right now I
don’t feel very strong or brave because I miss Eve. And in
some odd cosmic connection, I miss my parents too. I finally
GET IT, you know? When I watched Eve walk out of this village
today, I finally understood what my parents must have felt
when I left..."
Xena was a woman of few
words but she made the ones she used count.
Gabrielle answered. "I feel helpless. And I
don’t do ‘helpless’ real well."
"So I guess that makes
me a real baby for blubbering the way I did earlier, huh?"
"No, that made you
sweet," Gabrielle grinned. "One of the reasons I
love you very much because it’s a side few have ever
"You and mother,"
asked, a bit confused.
"You and my mother are
the only ones to ever see me cry – at least that hard
anyway. Not even my other family members saw me cry. I
remember when I broke my arm. I was six on a hunting trip with
Toris and my father when I fell out of a tree-."
"You? The warrior
princess? Fell out of a tree?" Gabrielle chuckled.
"I didn’t always have
many skills, Gabrielle," the warrior answered playfully.
"Anyway, I didn’t shed a single tear until my mother
took me to my room to tend to my arm. I balled my eyes out
then," she chuckled. "She almost started crying too.
She hated to see me in pain... And when we first found Eve
and I could feel her pain, her anger... I knew just how
mother felt that day. And many days afterward for that matter.
So I guess the point is that, yes, it hurts to be a parent. But
it also has wonderful rewards, so try not to be too upset. Cry
a little, morn the fact we won’t have her near us... but
realize we’ve done the right thing. We may not have raised
her as a child, but we showed her a new way that she can live
and learn - - and that’s the greatest gift a parent can give
Gabrielle grinned and took
another long drink of her ale.
"Me neither," Xena
answered as she downed her ale. "Let’s say we get real
drunk and fool around all night long."
Gabrielle choked on her
drink and Xena patted her on the back.
"Just caught me off
"Well the ‘kid’ is
‘out of the house’. We can act like newlyweds again,"
Xena said with a wiggle of her eyebrows.
"But we’ve never been
wed to begin with," Gabrielle countered.
"Yeah, why is that? You
know something? We should get married, Gabrielle."
"I think it’s the
stress of the ‘nest’ being empty that has you not thinking
clearly," the bard answered.
serious," Xena replied.
countered. "You’re getting drunk."
"I am not!"
"You always want to
marry me when your drunk and I always turn you down. Ask me
when you’re sober and I’ll consider it," Gabrielle
"Will you at least
sleep with me?" Xena asked.
"You already know the
answer to that question, warrior," the bard said, grabbing
Xena by the breastplate and bring her inches from her face.
"You don’t even have to ask."
"I don’t, huh?"
"How about I take you
right here on this table?"
"Now I KNOW you’re
drunk. Besides you wouldn’t want all these horny amazons
admiring your naked bard now, do you?"
"I’d kill ‘em
all," Xena growled, starting to look around at the
thought of them ogling HER BARD.
The warrior’s lip still
quivered like a mad dog ready to strike out.
"Oh boy, what did I
start?" Gabrielle chuckled. "I think I better get
you to a hut quick."
"I think you better
kiss me before you do anything else," Xena warned
Gabrielle rose up and slid
over until she straddled Xena’s waist. Her fingers pushed
their way through Xena’s hair at her temples until they
locked together in the back. Delicately, Gabrielle kissed Xena
high on the forehead while the warrior’s face became buried
in the bard’s cleavage.
"You’re so bad,"
"And you wouldn’t
have it any other way would you?"
"Not on your
"To the hut, then?"
Xena rose taking the bard
with her, still wrapped around her waist. "To the
BATTLE (set after "To Helicon and Back')
Gabrielle turned sharply as
soon as she heard the voice behind her approach.
"What are you doing
"Admiring a strong,
Gabrielle shook her head.
"Take your admiration elsewhere, Ares."
"I can’t. You were so
impressive out there. So decisive. So calculating. So cold
when you needed to be. I have to admit I was in awe, Gabrielle.
Sending those amazons out to their death. Making all the right
choices because Xena had failed in her task. If you froze
they’d all be dead on the beach. But you didn’t. You
pressed on. You kept moving – never relenting. It was
inspiring to watch I must admit."
Gabrielle rose from the
fallen tree she was sitting on. "Ares... You don’t
As she began to walk away,
"Now tell the truth,
battling bard. You never felt more alive then when you were
running for your life, did you? You never felt anything as
passionate as the heat of battle. When you chased down that
young solider in the woods I cursed Xena for stopping you. He
deserved to be gutted like a fish. And the look in his eyes
– the fear – I know you enjoyed seeing the power you had
"I did what needed to
be done," Gabrielle replied, not stopping her strides.
"Like I said,
brilliant. You, my dear bard, could be so much more. You could
command armies. Legions would fall at your feet."
Gabrielle stopped and faced
the God of War.
"First of all, I’m not
YOUR bard. I’ve never sang of you, Ares. I never will. As for
offering me the world yet again, you forget – you can’t
offer me what you don’t have." The war god didn’t
have a response and Gabrielle went on. "And for the
record I’ve felt things far more passionate than the heat of
battle. I’ve had something you’ll never have. I’ve had
the warrior princess," she answered smugly. "She’s
all the passion I need."
Gabrielle began to walk
again, but this time Ares didn’t follow. He simply watched
her walk away.
"Just remember Warrior
Amazon Queen, My offer will always stand!"
Gabrielle didn’t look
back. She just shook her head and shooed him away with her
hands. When she got back to the small camp the amazons had set
up at the edge of the forest, she found Xena sharpening her
sword by the campfire. From the sounds around her in the
various makeshift huts, which consisted of bedrolls hung from
the trees, she could tell battlelust was certainly in the air
Quickly, the warrior rose
when she saw Gabrielle approach. Xena wasn’t quite sure what
to think as Gabrielle came closer shaking her head and small
grin on her lips.
on?" Xena asked, unsure if her bard was going to laugh or
"What’d he do this
time?" Xena asked, looking around the forest behind them.
"He’s gone now,"
Gabrielle answered. She felt the tense warrior relax if only
slightly with the news. "He’s impressed with my
‘performance’ today," Gabrielle
chuckled in spite of her misery. "And I feel dead
Xena could feel her bottom
lip quiver just slightly. She wondered silently for a moment
if it would have been better if she and Gabrielle hadn’t
crossed paths again. She felt responsible for her failure to
stop the beach attack. But more than that she felt once more
that she was leading Gabrielle down the wrong path in life.
She was a beautiful, talented, creative woman. She didn’t
deserve to be fated with the likes of the warrior princess.
Xena began. Before she could go further Gabrielle cut her off.
"Oh no. Not
again," the bard warned. "We’ve already had this
discussion once today. Get that ‘I have to leave Gabrielle
for her own good’ look off your face warrior," she
She does know me well,
Xena thought as a small smirk crept to her mouth. "In
that case, is there anything I can do to help."
answered, pulling the warrior down for a searing kiss. Xena
felt every nerve ending in her body erupt. "Make me feel
alive again," Gabrielle cooed softly, her breath tickling
Xena looked around for some
seclusion for them, but all the tents were occupied with the
sounds of moaning and labored breathing. The warrior looked
around for some place to go, but the movement of her head was
stopped when she felt Gabrielle’s fingertips on her chin.
"Don’t worry about
them," Gabrielle whispered.
Xena saw the look in her
bard’s eyes that said take me, right here, right now. She
hesitated a moment, still unsure of what the nation’s
reaction might be should anyone wander out of their tent. She
didn’t dwell on it too long when she felt Gabrielle
unbuckling her breastplate before running her palms over her
battle dress. Xena took Gabrielle by the wrist, halting her
movement. She wanted to make sure that her bard was thinking
Gabrielle whimpered. "I need to touch you."
Any resistance Xena had at
that point melted away in the firelight as she admired her
lover. She reached down and undid the first few laces of her
boots, kicking them away. Next, came the laces behind her back.
When Gabrielle felt the task was taking too long, she briskly
turned Xena around and pulled with all her might, loosening
the dress. A moment later, Xena felt the leather garment
puddle at her ankles.
Gabrielle reached around
squeezing Xena’s breasts, her fingertips pinching around her
erect nipples. The moan that Xena omitted at the contact sent
Gabrielle into a frenzy. Her teeth nipped roughly between the
warrior’s shoulder blades as her fingers and palms continued
to claim her warrior. Xena reached back and grabbed a handful
of Gabrielle’s blonde locks, egging her on. In the meantime,
Xena used her other hand to lead Gabrielle down to her
britches, which were soaked by this time. Soon her britches
met the same fate as her dress.
The wetness Gabrielle
encountered made the bard quiver, not to mention the rhythm
that Xena had began against her hand. Gabrielle watched as
Xena gyrated against her long digits striving for more and
more pleasure. She couldn’t take it anymore. Gabrielle had
to pull away. When she did, she pushed Xena down on all fours.
The warrior grinned at the strength her bard had as well as
the tingling feeling the bard’s show of force left in her
very center. Not wasting a moment Gabrielle quickly stripped
herself of her clothing, continuing to stroke the warrior’s
back when she could, just so she could have some contact.
Once undressed, Gabrielle
pressed her sex against the warrior’s backside making Xena
moan. The wetness of her bard chilled her yet warmed her all
at once. Gabrielle grabbed Xena by the hips and ground her sex
against the warrior until Xena skin shinned from the trail of
arousal left there by the bard’s movements. Xena heard
Gabrielle’s ragged sigh over the sound of their bodies
slapping against each other.
"What I wouldn’t give
for our phallus right now," Gabrielle remarked, her voice
strained. Xena felt the bard reach between her legs, feeling
her reaction to their escapade. "I love doing you like
this. I love it. I love it," the bard began to repeat
over and over again, synchronizing with every thrust her body
made against the warrior. Xena couldn’t take it any longer.
Xena whispered. She reached back and guided one of
Gabrielle’s hand deep into her center. The bard slid in with
ease, two fingers first and then three. Gabrielle took
Xena’s long hair and threw it over one shoulder. In doing so
she laid her body over the warrior as much as she could
without breaking the contact her clit was feeling.
Xena could feel Gabrielle
breasts brushing across her back with each grind Gabrielle
made. She turned her head to try to look back at the bard when
she noticed a pair of amazon eyes watching her from one of the
tents. It was Cyan and her young lover who obviously were
distracted by the sounds outside their tent. Xena could have
stopped, but she didn’t. Instead she grinned wickedly at the
Take a good look ladies
Xena’s mind called out. See who your queen wants? Do you
see? And I’m not even part of your ‘club’.
The young women seemed
hypnotized by the movements in front of them and Xena soaked
it up. She looked back briefly to see if Gabrielle noticed
them too but the bard was far too consumed in her desire to
see. Her head was thrown back and her eyes closed tight. Her
hips worked quicker and quicker. By the quivering sounds
Gabrielle was making at this time Xena knew the bard was close
Watch ladies, Xena
thought, her attention focusing on the amazon admirers again. Watch
your queen come all over me.
Cyan’s lover had seen all
she could and switched positions so she could suck on her
queen’s bosom, worshiping her body again. Cyan never broke
eye contact with the warrior princess and the battling bard.
She watched intently and whimpered at the feel of her
lover’s tongue and the sight before her. When her lover saw
that Cyan was still watching the show before them, she pulled
back. Cyan whispered something to the young woman and she
rolled on her side to face the warrior and bard again.
This time Xena watched as
Cyan spread her lover’s legs. The young queen immediately
shot to her lovers centered and rubbed at lightening speed.
The young woman squirmed and shuddered, but she never looked
away from the activities of Xena and Gabrielle.
Xena’s attention quickly
turned back to Gabrielle when she felt the bard release her
center and grab her hips. Xena could feel Gabrielle’s nails
digging into her flesh as the bard let out a deafening howl of
satisfaction. The bard made a few more thrusts to insure she
was well spent. The sound alone made Xena wet all over again.
Without warning Xena felt herself being pushed face first into
the bedroll that lay before them. The bard quickly turned her
over and roughly took a place between Xena’s thighs.
At the first sensation of
Gabrielle’s tongue against her clit, Xena’s hips
instinctively raised to meet her mouth as her hand buried its
way into Gabrielle’s hair.
"Ahh yeah," Xena
sighed. The warrior knew the young amazons were still watching
them, but the feeling that Gabrielle was creating between her
legs was far too powerful at the moment for her to care any
Gabrielle pulled back and
let her fingers slide over Xena’s clit at a blurring speed.
"You taste so
good," Gabrielle complimented. "I have to devour
The world could have ended
and Xena knew she couldn’t stop. She wanted this. No. She
needed this. With every slurp Gabrielle made from her center,
Xena moved closer and closer to the end. Her toes curled and
her muscles tense.
Breathe Xena, she
told herself. Breathe.
Xena had discovered that
when she focused on her breathing when she came the feeling
was so much more intense. She willed her body to relax as she
felt the crest approaching closer. With a sound that rivaled
Gabrielle’s, the warrior exploded under the bard’s tongue.
Gabrielle," she sighed as wave after wave of satisfaction
washed over her. Slowly and with tender kisses the bard worked
her way up to Xena’s shoulder before snuggling in.
The pair held each other in
silence for long moments until Gabrielle spoke.
"The power of love is
much more passionate than the heat of battle," she
asked, kissing the bard on top of the head.
"You’ve made me feel
alive again. Thank you."
Xena glanced over to see
Cyan and her lover smiling. Slowly, they went back into the
recesses of their tent to give the warrior princess and the
queen some privacy.
welcome," Xena answered. "And if you ever need my
services again don’t be afraid to ask. I’ll be happy to
Gabrielle chuckled softly
and reached down to pull the covers over the two of them.
"I love you, Xena," the bard mumbled sleepily.
"I love you too,
Gabrielle. Sleep now. With any luck the amazons will sleep in
and I’ll make you feel alive again in the morning."
Xena could feel the bard
grin against her shoulder before slumber claimed them.
The Karmic Cycle Just Ran Over My Dogma (set after 'Send in
the Clones') w/TNovan
Harry Cavender climbed out of bed after the alarm had
gone off for the second time. He wasn't sure why he was
getting up. Technically, he was still on vacation, but being
home meant getting up for some reason.
He groaned, cleared his throat a little and then stretched,
popping his shoulders, neck and back. “Oh that's good.” He
smiled and hummed. Leaning over, he placed a kiss on Mattie's
forehead and then left their bedroom.
Scrubbing his face to awaken, he retrieved the paper from the
porch. Then he made his way to the kitchen for a cup of
coffee, which was pre-brewed thanks to the fact that Mattie
had remembered to set the timer the night before after they
had gotten back from their ski trip.
He grabbed his favorite cup from the coffee tree and poured
the coffee as he flipped open the paper on the counter.
Passing up the national news headlines, he opened the paper to
the local news. He had always figured there wasn't anything he
could really worry about on the national level anyhow, but if
there was some pervert running around in his neighborhood, he
should probably be aware of that.
He scanned the paper until he landed on the top local story.
His eyes widened, locked on the paper as he read. He was so
intent on reading the story that he only became distracted
when he realized he was overfilling his mug and spilling
coffee all over the counter. “Son of a bitch!” He put the
pot back quickly, dashed to the sink for a rag and mopped at
the mess as he continued to read the paper.
“Mattie! Mattie get up, hon!”
The blonde groaned and rolled over. Slowly, she opened a weary
eye, then rubbed both. Finally, she pushed up onto her elbows
and watched as Harry pulled on his pants and grabbed a shirt
from the dresser. “Is the house on fire?”
“It's much worse than that. Get up. We have a big problem.
We've got to find out what's going on.”
She never questioned it when her partner got like this, in
this lifetime or any other for that matter. They had been
through too many together. She did however, need to get him
calmed down and there was only one way to do that.
He turned around and raised a brow, “Yes, Gabrielle?” He
crossed his arms over his chest, knowing that his partner had
done that on purpose. They had been trying to reconcile all of
this for a while and every time Mattie did that it made him
nervous. He understood everything it meant. But it was just
easier to go with Harry and Mattie in this life, just as it
had been easier to go with the names they had been born with
in all the others. She only used Xena when she really
wanted his attention.
“Would you like to take a deep breath and tell me what's
She rubbed her eyes and sat up, placing her feet on
He reached over and tossed the soggy, coffee soaked paper at
“Spilling your coffee on the paper is not a good reason to
get me up, Harry.”
“Read the headline on the second page.”
Mattie flipped open the paper as best she could.
shit!” She was on her feet headed for her closet, still
reading the paper. “This can't be!”
“Then explain to me why the bodies we occupied several
millennia ago caused a huge ruckus at a local police
Mattie tossed the paper down and pulled a pair of jeans off a
hanger. Then she retrieved a t-shirt for herself. She quickly
found underclothes and pulled them on, hopping on one foot as
she slipped her jeans on one leg then the other.
“We need to
find out what's going on.”
“Is there an echo in here? Didn't I just say that?” He
tapped his foot.
“Nobody likes a smart-ass. Come on, get your shoes on!”
She huffed, tossing him his sneakers as she tied hers.
Xena cleared her throat and looked out from the small cave
they had found in an outcropping of rocks near the water. The
warrior could tell it was an ocean by the scent. Which ocean
she wasn't sure. There were a lot of things she wasn't sure of
at the moment.
They had been on their own for a few days now and things were
really starting to get more frustrating. Mostly because she
knew they just weren't prepared for what was out there.
They needed money. They needed new clothes, even though
Gabrielle was quick to point out that the women on the beach
were wearing far less than they were. Xena couldn't disagree,
but she wondered why in the hell the bard noticed the women on
She chewed on her pinkie nail for a moment and blew out a
frustrated breath. She turned her head slightly when she felt
a hand on her shoulder.
“Xena, I know you're only doing what your instincts tell you
to do. But I'm sure there's no reason for us to hide out in a
cave. I think it'll be all right for us to mix and mingle with
the people out there as long as we're careful.”
“But the police may still be looking for us.”
“Xena, they think we're dead, remember? We were supposedly
blown to Olympus and back.”
The warrior let out another long, slow, calming breath. “You
think they bought that?”
“Absolutely.” She smiled and rubbed her partner's
shoulder. “I think we should go out there and see what we
can find out. I know it's all a little intimidating, but as
long as we're together we'll be fine.”
Xena nodded. “You're right. Let's go. We need to find food
“It might be best to try and earn some money so we can buy
the food. I saw vendors selling it. I have a feeling that
fishing with a lure made from my hair or trying to chakram
some poor small animal around here might not be a wise
The tall woman nodded. “We know local law enforcement
doesn't like you and your sais.”
A blonde brow arched. “No kidding.” Now she chewed her
nail. “Maybe we should leave a few things here.” She
reached down and took her sias from her boots. “Weapons
might not be the best approach.”
“Agreed,” Xena nodded as she took off her sword and
removed her armor.
Mattie ran her hand through her hair as she grabbed a juice
from the fridge and Harry grabbed the car keys from the hook
on the wall. “So where do we start?”
“The police department?” Harry questioned.
Mattie shivered. Given her 'past' indulgences in various
moneymaking opportunities, police departments still made her a
bit edgy. It was true, since meeting back up with her partner,
everything had finally come to order and she was living the
straight life at last. The mere thought of that still cracked
her up for several reasons.
“Me? Police? Really?” She gave him a coy smile and a
little laugh. “I don't think so.”
Harry nodded, still amused by the fact that it was Mattie in
this lifetime that had 'issues' with authority figures.
“Okay then, I'll go to the police and you can check out the
newspapers. Do some digging and see if 'we've' shown up
Mattie nodded and watched as Harry began to make his way out.
Mattie cleared her throat and cocked her head. Harry cursed
himself and turned right back around.
“Sorry,” he muttered, making sure to give her the
traditional goodbye kiss. “I'm a little bit focused at the
“I guess I can forgive ya,” she teased. “Be careful.”
“2000 years and you still tell me to be careful?” he joked
“Old habits die hard,” she grinned. “Do you have your
He patted his hip. “Always. If you need me just yell. Be
back soon,” he said blowing her another kiss and making his
The warrior and the bard made their way down the beach then up
to street level. The traffic both on the city street and the
sidewalk was a bit overwhelming. They were realizing quickly
that it didn't take long to 'fit in'. In fact they weren't
even noticed, except for some construction workers who started
hooting at 'Blondie'. Of course, with the help of a bucket
that was located at the bottom of the scaffolding and the good
aim of the warrior princess, that was put to an end real
quick. The menacing, “Keep your eyes off and your mouth
shut,” warning from Xena didn't hurt either.
As they continued their walk down the street they approached a
resident walking toward them. At least they thought it was an
“Xena,” Gabrielle whispered. “What is that?”
There wasn't a single orifice left on this person that didn't
have a piercing. Hardly a single bit of flesh remained that
didn't display tattoo art of some kind. Gabrielle was in awe.
“I'm not sure,” Xena replied back. “Maybe a local
warlord or something, just keep walking and don't make eye
contact. We don't need to cause a scene.”
“Right, this from the woman who just knocked down three
carpenters for 'ogling her bard',” Gabrielle retorted.
“That was different!” Xena exclaimed in a hushed tone.
“What was I supposed to do? Just let those men treat you
Gabrielle grinned. She loved her warrior. Especially when she
watched out for her 'virtue'.
As the person passed, Gabrielle tried to look at a store
window. When she did, she noticed a sign.
“Hey Xena,” she said coming to a halt. “They need help
according to this sign. Perhaps I can find some work to get us
Xena looked up at the front of the building. She let out a
long, disgusted breath. In this lifetime, like the last, it
looked like it would be Gabrielle who would be the one earning
the money. “All right, let's see what kind of help they need,
Gabrielle. Maybe I can find work, too.”
The bard arched a brow, following Xena into the building. It
was dark and quiet, obviously a tavern that hadn't opened for
business yet. A few people milled about, including a few very
scantily clad women. One woman, who was completely topless and
not paying attention to where she was going, ran right into
Xena causing them both to be knocked off balance a bit. The
warrior was quick to wrap her arms around the woman and right
them. She cleared her throat and tried to look innocent as she
took in an eyeful of the woman's obvious attributes. “Umm…sor...
Xena cleared her throat as she slowly released her hold on the
The red head grinned, taking a look at the woman she had run
into. “No problem.” She ran a finger over the soft leather
strap at Xena's shoulder. “Happens all the time. Nice,”
She nodded at the rich brown leather. “Soft.” She
“All right that's it!” Gabrielle had taken more than she
could stand and grabbed Xena by the arm, dragging her away
from the woman and toward the door. “I was wrong about this
place. They don't need the type of help we can give them.”
Xena followed her bard, but turned her head to have one last
look at the woman who was now waving good-bye with a grin
plastered across her face. Apparently tall, dark and gorgeous
was already spoken for and just a tad whipped.
Mattie tapped her foot as she sat staring at the computer
screen. Having done a quick search, she didn't find anything
further on the local news groups about 'Xena and Gabrielle'.
The only thing she was sure of was that she'd bet good money
that somehow 'Xena' would have been involved in the explosion
at the junkyard. She picked up the phone and dialed Harry's
“Hiya, handsome. What do you know?” She sipped her juice.
“Yeah, shortly after their 'escape', there was…”
“An explosion at a local junkyard.” She finished for him.
“Right. The police are assuming they were killed in the
blast.” He sighed. “Witnesses say two people fitting their
descriptions were seen taking refuge behind a set of barrels
that ended up going up in a ball of flames.”
“Wanna bet they didn't?”
“If we know them as well as we think we know them, we know
“So,” Mattie leaned in on her hand. “The question
becomes: Where are they now? Where would we have gone?”
“Well,” Harry paused as he made a turn, “We would have
looked for shelter first and then food.”
“And given this location, where is Xena most likely to go to
find those two things?”
Harry pulled up to a stoplight and glanced over the top of his
sunglasses at the street sign. “Santa Monica.” He mumbled
when he saw the sign. “The beach.”
“Right!” Mattie jumped up. “I'll meet you there. We can
cover twice as much ground if I bring the Jeep down.”
“Meet me at Santa Monica and Ocean. That's a good place to
“But Gabrielle, I didn't do any…”
“Just don't.” The bard put her hand up and stalked away
from the warrior, walking briskly down the 3rd St.
Promenade past all the shops and restaurants.
“By the Gods.” The warrior just shook her head and
followed the blonde down the street, only turning her head
slightly when she walked past the Greek restaurant and her
stomach grumbled. “Later.” She chastised her own system
and picked up the pace to catch up. “Gabrielle, wait a
The blonde stopped and crossed her arms, tapping her foot in
the 'I'm completely annoyed at you' manner that had become
habit. Xena approached slowly and grinned. That particular
grin was the one that always melted her bard before, if her
memory was serving her correctly. She hoped she was right.
“What?” The blonde snapped.
“Didn't want to lose you in the crowd.” Xena grinned
again, still waiting for it to work. When it didn't take, she
went for the puppy eyes. The bard smiled. That did it. I
knew it was one of the two. “Let's just take it slow and
Gabrielle sighed allowing her frustration to dissipate.
“Right. I'm sorry.”
They continued their walk. As they approached a busy street, a
car screeched to a halt and the driver's door popped open.
“You two have to come with me.”
Xena and Gabrielle looked at each other before taking another
look at the man panting in front of them. Gabrielle could tell
he wasn't a local law officer by his appearance. He didn't
have a uniform like them. His dress, however, became secondary
the closer he moved to them.
“He looks like Joxer,” Xena whispered.
Harry stepped closer. “I know you might not believe me, but
I'm a... friend. You have to come with me so we can talk a
few things over. Besides, it may not be safe for you here.”
“Who are you?” Gabrielle asked.
“Please get in the car and I'll explain everything,” he
replied pointing behind him.
Xena considered it a moment. What do we have to lose? Can't
be any worse than where we've been. With a nod, the bard
followed her lead. Xena took the passenger side and Gabrielle
took the back seat as Harry climbed in.
“I've got someone you have to meet first,” he said has he
pulled into traffic.
“Who are you exactly?” The warrior questioned, making sure
she had room in the car to throw a proper punch if need be.
Harry sucked air through his teeth and sighed. “Well, that's
where things get a little complicated.” He looked to Xena,
lifting a brow. “My given name is Harry. Let's go with that
for right now and we'll try to figure everything else out as
“You keep saying we,” Gabrielle commented, scooting closer
to the front seat and staying close to Xena. “Who is we? Or
do you have a mouse in your pocket?”
Harry and Xena both gave the bard a strange look. She smiled
at the warrior, then just shrugged at Harry. “It was a
perfectly reasonable question.”
“Yes, it was.” He agreed as he pulled over to the side of
the road and honked the horn to get Mattie's attention as she
stood at the intersection waiting for him. He rolled down the
window and waved her over.
The blonde jogged across the street and jumped in the back
seat, coming face to face with, well, herself.
“Xena?” Gabrielle looked totally shocked as she took in
Mattie's features. “She…She…” The bard pointed as she
stammered. “She looks like me.”
“Actually,” Mattie crossed her arms. “You look like
me,” she declared defiantly. “You were artificially
Gabrielle immediately didn't like the tone and took offense.
“Yeah, we'll I'm thousands of years old,” the bard
“No, you're not,” Mattie said beginning to argue.
At that moment, Xena turned around and anything Mattie was
about to say got lost in her admiration of the blue eyes
examining her. Her thoughts now seemed anything but chaste as
she watched Xena and the smile on her lips conveyed just what
was on her mind.
Xena grinned in response as Gabrielle watched the interaction
between her warrior and this... woman.
“Hey!” Gabrielle barked. “Who do you think you're
staring at?” the blonde asked, unable to hide her hostility.
Xena turned away in response but Mattie continued to watch the
warrior oblivious to the warning.
“Okay, guys this is going to be hard enough.” Harry tried
to get things under control before there was an out and out
fight in the back seat that he and Xena certainly wouldn't
want to get in the middle of. “Let's all just relax until we
get back to the house. Mattie, do you want me to take you back
to the Jeep?”
“No, it'll keep in the parking garage 'til later,” she
told him, getting pulled from her thoughts.
“Right then, we'll go back to the house and try to get this
sorted out.” He looked over to Xena. “Are you hungry?”
Xena acknowledged the question with a slight nod of her head.
She hated relying on someone else for the basics, but she
didn't have much choice at the moment and she knew Gabrielle
had to be close to starving.
Mattie and Gabrielle continued to stare at each other. It was
a very uneasy truce in the back seat between the two women.
Xena and Gabrielle stood in the corner of the kitchen,
watching as Harry and Mattie set the table and placed the
cartons of food in the center. Even before they were opened,
Xena smelled dishes that were new, yet strangely familiar and
her stomach growled. She looked down at Gabrielle who reached
over and patted her leather-clad stomach.
“Funny, it's you and not me this time.” The bard winked
even as Xena's arm settled around her waist and the warrior
pulled her close.
The action was not lost on Harry who smiled a bit and tilted
his head slightly to alert Mattie to have a look at their
“Like I said...” The blonde grinned at her husband. “...
habits die hard.”
With the table set and the cartons opened, they all sat down.
Xena and Gabrielle followed Harry and Mattie's lead when it
came to dishing out the food. They both looked at the Chinese
food with a little concern, but decided that if their 'hosts'
could eat it, then they could, too.
Xena watched carefully as Harry utilized his fork. She smiled
and picked hers up, looking at it. She decided that anything
used to stab food multiple times was a good thing. The warrior
was so busy getting the hang of the silverware that she didn't
notice the storm brewing between Gabrielle and Mattie.
The bard leaned over, waving her knife a little at the 'other'
“Is there a reason you keep staring at Xena?” She
quirked a challenging brow.
Mattie dropped her fork on her plate. “It's my house. I can
look at whomever I damn well please!”
“Will you two knock it off?”
The voices of Harry and Xena mimicked each other enough to
cause the bickering women turn to look at them, dumbfounded.
They, themselves, were caught off guard by their similar
Xena shook her head to get her bearings. “Now you said you
had something to tell us,” she said, addressing Harry.
“Remember when you went to India?” he began.
“Yeah, I got my arms chopped off,” she answered.
“No, before the arm chopping bit,” Harry corrected. “You
both learned that your souls were connected in many lives,
It took a moment but recognition started to take hold for the
warrior and the bard. “Vaguely, yes.”
“Well, Gabrielle meet Gabrielle. Xena, I'm Xena,” Harry
announced, giving formal introductions.
“Guess this kinda proves that Gabby could never live with
herself. They've been fighting since we got here,” Xena
Harry laughed. Xena laughed. Mattie and Gabby gave the slit
eyes to their respective lovers, which abruptly stopped the
“Point is,” Mattie began, a bit miffed, “You two
are…us…made from our DNA from two thousand years ago. I'm
not sure if they explained to you how it works, but they
usually take something like hair or skin and make a new 'you'.
It's called cloning. You're our clones.”
“Does everyone have clones of themselves?” Gabby asked.
“Well, no. I've never heard of a human clone. Animals have
been cloned, but never a human. Not until now…and as you can
see…it really makes things 'unusual'. I mean you 'think'
you're Xena and Gabrielle, but in truth Harry and I are the 'real'
Xena and Gabrielle.”
“I know who I am,” Xena remarked. “I don't need some
bard look-a-like telling me about my reality.”
Harry could see this could become an explosive situation.
“No one has a doubt that you're real, Xena,” Harry added
quickly. “But you have to admit it's a bizarre situation.”
“What I find really bizarre is how much you look like Joxer!”
Xena answered, as she examined her egg roll with great detail.
She poked it with her fork a few times.
“Wonder if Joxer made the 'karmic jump'?” Gabrielle
Harry and Mattie looked at each other, both unsure if they
should open THAT can of worms.
“Harry could probably tell you about that,” Mattie began.
“Yes, but you tell it so much better,” Harry said knocking
it back over the net.
“Ohhh, I couldn't dear. Really, go ahead.”
“You're the storyteller-.”
“Out with it already!” Xena broke in.
Harry paused a moment looking at his plate, getting his nerve
up. “Joxer is kinda my ex-girlfriend,” Harry answered,
playing with his napkin.
“Joxer?” Gabrielle quipped, “You fell in love with Joxer?!”
Gabrielle quickly reached over and slapped Xena across the
arm. “How could you?! Xena!”
“Whaaaaaat?” the warrior whined scooting away from another
slap. “It wasn't ME. It was HIM.”
“Yeah, but he's you according to him so that means that YOU
fell in love with Joxer.”
“But he dumped him – I mean her – I mean…Point is, I
obviously found you again,” Xena said, pointing to Mattie
and Harry. “We're still happy, see? So what's wrong?”
Gabrielle sat. Arms folded. Toe-tapping. Scowling. “Joxer,”
she harrumphed. “Sheesh.”
Xena looked to Mattie. “What about you? Did you have someone
when you met Harry?” she asked, hoping to 'one up' the bard.
“Actually, no. I was a single lesbian who ran a petty scams
here and there,” Mattie admitted openly.
“You're a thief from Lesbos?” Xena remarked, surprised.
Mattie grinned and considered the question. “Hmm…yeah you
could say that. You seem shocked to hear I wasn't always on
the up and up.”
“Well, actually it was the Lesbos part. I didn't think it
was still around.”
Harry had to laugh. “No, Xena. You don't understand. Mattie
dated women. That's what the term lesbian means today.”
“But she married you?” Xena remarked to Harry.
“It was the soul I fell in love with,” Mattie confessed
before Harry could answer. “The 'wrapping' didn't matter
anymore today than it did two thousand years ago.”
“And it doesn't bother you that he looks like Joxer?”
Gabrielle jerked her thumb at Harry. “Come on,” The bard
“Well, it took some getting used to.” Mattie looked to
Harry with a wink and a smile. “But we managed to get past
“Right.” Harry nodded, taking a big bite of his dinner.
“I think after dinner we need to take you out and get you
some real clothes. This may be L.A., but you still need a few
things that will attract less attention.” He gestured with
his fork. “Something that won't make you look like stunt
doubles from a bad b-grade movie.”
Mattie gave Gabrielle the once over. “Not bad, not bad at
all.” She nodded as she looked at the bard, who was now
dressed in blue jeans and a T-shirt. “How does it feel?”
Gabrielle twisted and stretched her legs a bit. “I little
constrictive. How do you fight in these things?”
Mattie chuckled as she handed the bard a pair of sneakers.
“You don't fight?” Gabrielle asked. She held the shoes,
inspecting them. They didn't feel like leather but they did
seem to offer some support and would certainly be good for
running if need be.
“Nope. Not in this life.” Mattie answered.
Gabrielle bit her lip in an effort to keep from smiling but it
still managed to creep across her face. She leaned in to
Mattie. “Then I'll tell you this just one more time. Keep
your eyes off Xena or I'll kick your ass.”
The current incarnation drew a deep breath and squared her
shoulders. “Look, I have no interest in your Xena. Harry and
I are perfectly happy together. You need to get a grip.”
“Yeah, I'll get a grip all right. Right up side your head if
“STOP IT!” Harry and Xena both shouted in unison.
The women turned to their respective partners, trying to look
innocent but failing miserably.
“Gabrielle,” The warrior stepped into the bedroom.
“You've got to stop this. I'm sure Mattie has no interest in
me, other than trying to figure out exactly how we're going to
work this mess out.”
“Un-huh.” The bard sounded skeptical, then she got a look
at Xena in a pair of shorts and a deep blue T-shirt. “That's
an interesting look.”
“It's only temporary. Harry's pants are too short in the
legs for me. But we thought this was better than my leathers
for going out.”
Gabrielle smiled, running her fingers down the T-shirt. “I
think it's kind of cute.” She allowed her hand to graze over
an erect nipple that was trying to break free of the fabric.
“This is very interesting.”
The warrior groaned, grasping Gabrielle's wandering hand.
“Be good!” She growled under her breath, glancing at Harry
“I'm always good, Xena, you know that.” The bard winked.
Harry stood by the counter watching as his credit card took
yet another hit. After four hours and several hundred dollars
he and Mattie were satisfied that Xena and Gabrielle were now
suitably outfitted and needing very little.
They picked up the newest packages and headed back out into
the mall. Mattie and Harry found themselves holding back grins
as the warrior and the bard took in the sights and sounds
Harry thought at one point, when they first got there that he
was going to have to wrestle Xena onto the escalator. Then he
started thinking more like her and once he called her a
chicken the snare had been set and the Warrior Princess was
trapped by her own ego, forcing her to get on the moving
The three of them very nearly collided with Gabrielle when she
suddenly stopped outside a video store. She watched the TV
screens, then pointed hesitantly. “That's what they used to
'show us' our lives.”
Harry scratched his cheek and sighed. “Ah yeah, well, don't
believe everything they showed you Gabrielle. It wasn't
exactly like that. That's a television show. It took certain,
'dramatic license' with our lives. It wasn't really very
“You mean Xena didn't have the hots for Ares?” She lifted
a pale brow.
“Umm, no. Not unless it was some part of a plan…”
Xena crossed her arms when the bard gave her annoyed look.
“What? I didn't do anything. It must have been him.” She
jerked a thumb toward Harry.
Gabrielle turned back to the window. “So who are these
Mattie bit her lip trying to figure out how to explain it.
“They're actresses. Hired to play the parts of Xena and
Gabrielle cocked her head. “It's amazing how much they look
like us,” the bard remarked as she watched the television.
When Autolycus came on the screen Gabrielle turned to Xena.
“Look! Remember Autolycus? They never showed us Autolycus in
the lab… but I remember now. There was Autolycus…and Minya.
Do you remember Minya?”
Xena paused a moment trying her best to put a face with the
name. “Frying pan lady?”
“Yeah. There was also Eli and Draco…and NAJARA! Remember
Najara?” Gabrielle exclaimed. “I wonder if they mentioned
any of them.” Gabrielle and Xena both looked to Harry and
Harry cleared his throat. “Like we said the show took
'liberties' with the truth. Eli was a good friend although
they made him a sniffling chicken at the beginning. He didn't
want to help get rid of Taltaka and took off for the
“He what?” Gabby and Xena said in unity.
Mattie nodded. “And Draco turned into a love sick puppy dog
for Gabrielle and decided if he couldn't have her she was
gonna die a spectacular death.”
“He never did that,” Gabrielle answered. “Xena and I
convinced him there was a better way than just warlording. He
helped us several times after that.”
“I know,” Harry answered. “And Najara….well, you don't
want to know, trust me.”
“Oh yes we do,” the bard ordered. “What's the story?”
Mattie sighed. “Well Najara was a religious zealot that
Gabby fell for. She also beat the crap out of Xena.”
“Those lying bastards,” Xena answered. On pure reflex she
reached behind her back for her sword but realized quickly
there was nothing there. “Where can we find these distorters
of Gabrielle's work?” she asked Harry, putting her hands on
her hips in frustration.
“Well, it's not easy so don't try. Beside I don't want to
see any heads roll.” Harry warned.
He and Mattie looked at each other and snickered at the 'head
“What's so funny?” Xena asked.
“Well according to the producer,” Harry answered.
“Xena's end comes when a Samurai warrior cuts off her head
“But Xena didn't die that time,” Gabrielle answered. “It
wasn't until years later when-.”
“I know,” Harry said putting up his hands, “but try not
to be upset. The producer was an equal opportunity offender.
He like to 'homage'-.”
Mattie butted in to say, “You mean steal.”
Harry smiled but nodded. “Okay, 'steal' other people's movie
ideas and make them fit the story line.”
“Or not fit the story line as the case would often be,”
Gabrielle looked stunned. “I can't believe it. All those
years. All that work. And he reduces it to a titillation show,
which did nothing more than cast doubts on my 'real
relationship' with Xena. It's…appalling. Dare I say,
“Absolutely,” Mattie answered. “Although we haven't
agreed on much since your arrival Gabrielle, we've found
something we can agree upon. It is tragic. I remember all
those nights I…I mean you…I mean we…would sit and write.
Trying to capture everything…only to have it reduced to an
hour of eye candy each week.”
“It's like it's a joke,” Gabrielle said sadly. “Like
what I wrote never mattered.”
“It mattered to me,” Xena answered, running a comforting
hand across Gabrielle's back. “It still does…We know the
truth and that's all that truly matters in the end.”
Harry motioned them along and they followed.
“Death by a samurai warrior?” Gabrielle asked
rhetorically. “How ridiculous is that?”
“What are we gonna do Harry?” Mattie asked. The two lay
cuddled in bed, Mattie's head resting on Harry's shoulder. She
let out a deep sigh as she continued to consider their
dilemma. “We can't keep them here and we can't set them free
in the city again.”
Harry considered the question carefully and slowly turned to
face Mattie. “Why don't we send them home?” he asked.
“Their home is a petri dish,” Mattie pointed out.
“No, I mean the home they know – Greece,” Harry replied.
“They know the English language. Perhaps we can teach them
Greek. After all, it only took us two weeks to learn. For them
it might be even faster. They'll be more familiar with the
“We just can't give them two plane tickets and say 'see ya',”
Mattie chuckled. “Well, maybe you could do that with
“Mattie,” Harry growled. “Be nice.”
Mattie smiled. “I was just teasing. But as I said, we can't
just push them out. Besides, they have no visas, no identity.
Well, not that it matters. I've got an old friend that owes me
a favor,” she grinned.
“Oh really,” Harry laughed. “Do I want to know about
“Probably not,” Mattie answered. “But having a dark past
does have it's advantages.” She grinned with a crinkle of
Harry considered the plan and cleared his throat. “Okay
then. Tomorrow you take the gals and see your 'friend'. I'll
go to the bank and draw from the savings. I'll make some
reservations and get plenty of money for them to get set up in
Greece. And since you don't want to just 'dump them off' we'll
go, too... Besides, it will be like a second honeymoon.”
The next morning Mattie returned home with the warrior, bard
and two visas in her hand. Harry was already home with the
plane tickets and a hotel reservation in Athens in his hand.
Mattie opened the envelopes and saw the dates.
“Two weeks?” she exclaimed happily.
“Two weeks,” Harry said firmly, wrapping a loving arm
around her waist. “Last time you wanted to stay longer. Plus
it will give us a chance to teach the gals the language.”
Harry then handed Xena an envelope – she paused a moment
before looking inside. It was the paper currency that she'd
watched Mattie and Harry use from time to time were out to buy
hot food while they'd been shopping. “What's this for?”
“Survival,” Harry told her. “In today's world you need
dinars and lots of them. I figure that's enough to get you
started somewhere until you can start making your own living.
Or if you wish you can just live off of the land – you know
the area well enough.” He grinned. “But the choice is
yours. You can't stay here in America. You'd either get
hounded by the police for the jail-break or mobbed by fans who
think you're Xena and Gabrielle. Either way, it wouldn't be
pretty,” he chuckled.
Xena gave a small grin of thanks and nodded. “I'll pay you
back someday,” she told him.
“Don't worry about it,” he said as he went to the table to
collect their travel portfolio. “I've got all of our bags
packed and in the Jeep. So whenever you're ready,” he said
motioning to the door.
Gabrielle hooked Xena's arm as they made their way outside.
Ironically, Mattie found herself naturally making the same
gesture as they walked along.
“Thank you,” Mattie whispered up to Harry.
“For what?” he asked.
“For keeping your word – for finding me in every life,”
she told him. “You've always had a good soul.”
“You're not so bad yourself, pumpkin.” He grinned. With
duplicate smiles the couple caught up to the waiting warrior
Testing Fate (set after 'When Fates Collide')
"But you could have
Gabrielle answered cutting Xena short. "Look we’ve gone
over all this ad nauseam tonight."
"Don’t go throwin’
those big fancy words around, Gabrielle. I might not be able to
follow you seeing I’m just a simple warrior."
Xena smirked with her
answer, which prompted Gabrielle to grin.
"Sorry… Forgot who I
was speaking to. Allow me to rephrase. We talked about this
over and over and I’m to the point where I’m going to
break out the sais. How’s that?"
Xena grinned. She took a drink for their flask and handed it
to Gabrielle. "Have some two dinar wine. It’s all a
poor warrior can afford to get you."
Gabrielle shook her head. She
just won’t let it go. Instead of taking a drink, she
returned it to Xena’s lips again. She tilted it backward as
Xena drank, but moved it away before the warrior was prepared.
A few drops dribbled down Xena’s chin to her cleavage.
Gabrielle," the warrior retorted.
Before she had a chance to
wipe the wine from her skin, Gabrielle leaned over and licked
Xena’s breastline. The warrior couldn’t help, but smile.
She lost her smile, however, when the bard’s lips claimed
her own, her tongue tasting the sweet juice inside the
warrior’s mouth. Slowly, the bard pulled back and took a
place between the warrior’s legs.
"On your lips,"
Gabrielle whispered sincerely, "two dinar wine is better
than anything on the empress table. Don’t you see? Any life,
any wine, would never be as sweet if we were apart. I might
have been the toast of Athens, Xena, but I’d never have your
love. I’d never know your touch. I’d never know what your
cry of pleasure sounded like. Fame and fortune would mean
nothing to me without you."
"With me to the end,
Gabrielle smiled. "Always and forever. I
Xena pulled the bard into
her arms and turned her so they both looked into the fire
"I know I can’t give
you everything you deserve, Gabrielle. I’ll never give you a
house on the vineyard by the sea. I’ll never give you more
than a few dinars for some parchment and some quills now and
then. With the way our funds look at the moment, I’m not sure
if I can even do that, but…Please know, you’re everything
to me. I’d do anything for you…I would."
Gabrielle rested her head
back into Xena’s chest and closed her eyes.
already given me so much Xena. I’m not sure what more you
could give me. You’ve spent so much time teaching me and
showing me everything I’ll need in this world to go
on…That first night when we parted last year, I made a fire
and I thought of you. You taught me how to do that. You’ve
taught me so much that I don’t think I could ever repay
Well there is one more
thing, Xena considered. She leaned down and whispered into
"Come with me."
She rose and reached down
for the bard’s hand. Confused but accepting the gesture just
the same, she gave Xena her hand and let her lead her to her
feet. They walked to a small clearing where a few rocks and
trees lined the area. The full moon shown bright in the
clearing as Xena took her chakram from her hip.
Casually she handed it to
the bard. "Throw it."
Gabrielle looked at the
discus and back to her partner. "Xena, I…I don’t know
what to say."
"Don’t say anything.
Just throw it."
Gabrielle moved back a pace
and got her footing. She looked to Xena one last time,
hesitant. But the warrior gave a firm nod and the bard heaved
it in one mighty stroke.
They both watched as it hit
a tree, bounced off a nearby rock, heading straight back to
the bard. Gabrielle’s eyes went wide and Xena smiled,
waiting until the last minute to extend her hand.
Instead of pulling the
weapon she held it out for Gabrielle. "See? See the way I
have it now. That’s how you want to place your hand on
it’s return. Let’s try it again. This time I’ll
Xena fit snuggly against
Gabrielle’s back as she showed Gabrielle how to hold it.
Once the bard had it firmly in her grasp, Xena’s hand took
hold of Gabrielle’s wrist. "Keep it locked and steady.
A smooth, even stroke is what you need here."
"Smooth, even stroke,
huh? You know," Gabrielle blushed. "This feels kinda
"Like kink bothers
you," Xena retorted. "I’ve got a group of amazons
that could say otherwise."
Gabrielle bumped back to
slam into Xena, which only prompted the warrior to chuckle.
"Come on," Xena said getting serious again. "Do
you want to learn how to do this or not? It’s your
Gabrielle looked back and
grinned. "Teach me everything you know."
Xena returned the smile, but
regrouped to her former location against Gabrielle’s back.
"Okay. On three… one… two… three!"
The chakram left
Gabrielle’s hand like a crossbow arrow. Just as before it
hit the tree and then the rock and made its way home to her.
As the discus came closer she steadied her breath and waited
for impact. Xena’s hand stayed on Gabrielle’s wrist.
In one sweeping motion,
Gabrielle had the weapon in her hand.
"I did it! Well… You
helped me catch it."
"I didn’t help. You
caught it all on your own, Gabrielle. My hand was on your
wrist, not the chakram. You did catch it."
Gabrielle said looking at the disc and then to Xena. "Are
you sure you didn’t slow it down somehow?"
answered honestly. "Wanna try again. I won’t touch you
"Well, where’s the fun
in that?" the bard chuckled.
warrior drawled in warning.
"Okay, okay," she
answered. "Warrior training time. I know."
Gabrielle steadied her
sights on the rock this time instead of the tree. Xena kept a
watchful eye on the situation and was a bit surprised when she
felt the peck on the cheek.
for?" Xena grinned.
"For trusting me. And
being you…my warrior princess with the two dinar wine."
Xena felt herself smile as
she stroked the bard’s back in one fluid movement. She
didn’t reply. She didn’t trust herself in replying. After
all, she was the warrior princess, and warrior princesses
didn’t tear up at compliments from beautiful soulmates. At
least not during training.
"Are you ready?"
Xena asked with a simple nod.
ready," Gabrielle answered becoming focused again. She
watched the weapon fly from one point to the other and back to
her. As she caught it a thought occurred. "Can you teach
me how to bounce it? I mean sometimes it comes straight back
to you and some times it goes all over the place. How do you
know how to do that? Can you show me?!"
I gotta admit I love it
when I see the little excited girl come back into her eyes.
"Sure," Xena answered. "But not tonight, it’s
late now, but you’ve got the basics of how it works. That’s
the hardest part of all really."
Gabrielle reached up and
stroked Xena’s face before standing on her tiptoes to kiss
her lips tenderly.
"Thank you for giving me many skills