Place Like Home Part 1
Xena Fanfiction, Xena fanfic, Xena fan fiction, Xena and
Gabrielle fanfiction, Xena fiction
As always Xena, Gabby and the gang aren’t mine. They belong to MCA/Universal. This story is however mine and it’s just for recreation. If the idea of two women in love (who show their affection explicitly and use some ‘naughty’ words in the process) offends you please move on. Same rule applies if love is illegal where you live or if you’re too young.
Note: Please keep in mind this is the four story in the
not necessary to read it the others, but you may enjoy them and gain
greater insight on my take of the Xena/Gabrielle love thang.
and Gabrielle go about finding a suitable male to produce an
I love feedback so if you felt moved by these words (either positive or negative) drop me a line at: firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to non-homophobic constructive comments. Thanks for reading.
Place Like Home Part 1 of 2
The Amazons ripped
through the warlord's camp, descending upon them like locus.
Some women work their way into the surrounding tents; others
took their prey in the open.
Gabrielle," the regent shouted, "This way."
her hold on Xena's waist as the warrior kicked Argo into a
the leader," Ephiny informed her. "Over here."
The three women
dismounted and walked into the command quarters to find
Kelioteus, the leader of the war party. All three stopped in
their tracks, taking in the view.
His upper arms and
chest were scared with arrow and sword wounds. His hair line
was receding quicker than Herr's bad temper. What teeth he had
left were more maize than last years corn harvest.
Gabrielle took a
long look at the warlord. Then her bondmate.
the bard replied adamantly. "Nah ah. Nada." Quickly,
she turned to Ephiny, "We're outta here."
Xena couldn't help
but smile as she followed her bondmate outside.
Ephiny turned to
the captured warlord. "You are released," she
informed him. "You may go about your way freely."
Ephiny turned to
leave, but Kelioteus stopped her. "Wait a minute! What
was all that about?!"
Ephiny turned on
her heels with a smile on her face. "My queen finds you
unworthy of reproduction. She's rejected you as a potential
mating partner. You may go."
Ephiny turned to
leave again, but once more was stopped.
you kidding?! I'm the pick of the litter!" he exclaimed.
"Surely you have a 'second in command' that I could
perhaps 'service'," he added, trying to act suave.
just what Gabrielle felt moments before and her stomach
answered with nausea. "We don't. Believe me."
This time, she
finally made it outside and walked over to Xena and Gabrielle.
She cleared her throat to make her presence known.
Gabrielle," the regent began with a grin. "This is
the third raiding party in as many weeks. If you're waiting
for the male equivalent of Xena, you aren't going find
looking for the male equivalent of Xena. She's my one in only.
However, I would like to find a mating partner that doesn't
repulse me with their stench or haggardness... Be honest Eph'.
Would you touch him?"
offered," Ephiny confessed.
declined," Ephiny admitted with a grin. "To be
honest, I don't blame you one bit... Especially if I was used
to lying next to this body every night," she added,
playfully latching onto Xena's arm, looking up to the warrior.
Xena just scowled
down at Ephiny until she had to grin. "Thanks," she
replied patting the regent's hands that encompassed her
forearm. "But I'm taken and very much so."
does this leave us?" Gabrielle asked in frustration.
Beta," Xena replied.
Beta?" Ephiny asked.
"We hit the road again," she replied.
explain or understand the effect those words had on her. They
would be leaving again. She had grown accustomed to having
them around the village since Zagreus attack and she was
already mourning their departure, although they still stood in
front of her.
Gabrielle nodded in
agreement. And Ephiny knew she would be telling her friends
later, they returned home. The summer festival that Ephiny had
planned before the Zagreus' attack, was in full swing. It was
a party to celebrate the recent victory over Zagreus, their
latest 'attacks' on war party camps and the departure of their
queen and her consort.
Xena slipped ale
most of the night, wanting to be clear and focused for the
next morning when they would leave. Eponin did her best to try
to get the warrior drunk by refilling her tanker often. Only
trouble was, Eponin would finish hers completely while Xena's
remained half empty at the most.
Xena," the dark amazon slurred. "I bet I could take
Xena just smiled
and nodded her head. "Is that so?"
yeah!" Eponin exclaimed. "Why don't we go out to the
practice field right now? I'll show what a real amazon's...
Xena waited a
moment, but she could tell Eponin lost her train of thought.
"Made of?" Xena offered, trying to finish the
show ya what a real amazon's made of!" she repeated,
leaning over the table in challenge.
"I made it a
point long ago to never take advantage of a woman who's
drunk," Xena teased.
not drunk! I'll prove it!" She shot up and spilled ale
all over the table and Xena. As Eponin unsheathed her sword, Ephiny
"Hey there Ep'.
Let's take it easy," Ephiny answered, taking the sword
away and handing it to Diteria behind her, who in turn gave it
to a young amazon with instructions on putting it in their
chambers. "Why don't you go talk to Allena?" she
offered. "She's been bragging about you all night. I'm
sure she's getting lonely right about now."
Eponin smiled at
the thought. Allena. Now that's a real amazon. Long dark
hair. Piercing green eyes. High, firm breast and... Yeah,
idea," the dark-haired warrior agreed, staggering off.
okay?" Ephiny asked Xena as she and Diteria took a seat.
Dry? No," the warrior answered. "I think I'm going
to change out of these wet leathers," she added standing
up. "I'll be back."
As Xena made her
way to the royal hut Ephiny spotted Gabrielle watching the
warrior move to their chambers almost as if she were
hypnotized by Xena's walk. Gabrielle excused herself from the
small circle she was in, making her way to the hut. Judging by
the look in her queen's eyes, Ephiny knew she wouldn't see the
queen or consort until later in the evening, if at all.
Xena stood naked
next to the basin, trying to rid her skin of the ale that
managed to soak through. She felt, rather than heard, a
presence behind her.
fun?" she asked casually.
view," Gabrielle answered.
Soon, the warrior
felt the bard's hands reach around, clutching both her
breasts; fingers teasing her nipples.
"Like I told,
Eponin," the warrior answered, trying to keep her voice
steady. "I never take advantage of drunk women - be it
sparing or... other matters."
see it, but she heard the grin in the warrior's voice. The
bard squeezed harder to emphasize her reply.
"It would be
to your 'disadvantage' if you didn't take this woman."
Xena moaned at the
contact as her head fell back gently against Gabrielle's
forehead, soaking in her capture. The towel fell from Xena's
fingers splashing into the soapy water as Gabrielle lips lay
demanding claim to the warrior's strong shoulders.
"Gods! You are
beautiful," Gabrielle added, her deep raw with passion.
"The things you do to me."
She took Xena's
hand, leading it under her skirt, into her wetness. Xena was
surprised to find she had no britches on underneath. "A
little underdressed, I see," the warrior tried to answer
smugly. It didn't work. Gabrielle could hear Xena trying to
keep her desire in check.
Gabrielle insisted, spinning the warrior around fiercely to
face her. "I've had plans for you all night."
The bard urgently
tugged the warrior's head down, welding her lips to her
lovers. Tongues fought for control. Neither side winning or
losing; only building their passions higher. Gabrielle felt
her suede, amazon bikini top ripped forcefully from her body.
Her whimper of surprise and desire only inspired the warrior
Lust - plain and
simple. That's what each woman aspired to at this point. The
bard loved the warrior. The warrior loved the bard. But
tonight both could feel something primal in their need for
each other as their tongues continued to do battle in each
other's mouth. Xena broke away first, fixating herself on
Gabrielle's neck as she swiped the bard into her arms.
She walked a few
feet before she threw the bard on the bed. Gabrielle landed
with a soft thud, but before she could rise the warrior had
already leaped, pinning the bard back down on the mattress
with her strong naked form. In one strong heave and tug, the
thin skirt that clung to the bard's waist was nothing more
than tattered cloth - a causality to her warrior's longing.
As Xena's thigh
crept between the bard's, Gabrielle reached down to the back
of the warrior's leg. She ached for more contact, harder
contact; her hips began to show the level of her arousal. Xena
for her part, did nothing to stop it. She wanted the bard just
as much. She had to have her.
There was nothing
loving; nothing affectionate in their motions. Hips thrust and
rotated, as grunts and cries of want escaped their mouths. The
sound of their bodies slapping together forcefully filled the
large hut. Xena loved it. She was always a very physical
person; very rough. She was delighted by the way the bard
could tenderly caress her when she needed it. And she was even
more thankful for nights like tonight when the bard could take
whatever she gave. Not only take it, but enjoy it - want more
of it. Begging for it. Harder and Harder.
Xena could feel the
sweat beginning to pour from her body as she continued to
grind against Gabrielle. The bard glistened in the candlelight
as well; her strawberry blonde bangs darker from the wetness
around her forehead. The wetness on her face, however, was
nothing compared to that between her legs. Xena's thigh was
total soaked and the smell of their desire hung heavy in the
Xena," the bard said between passionate grunts.
"Harder! Give it to me. Harder!"
Xena was unsure if
the bed would hold them at this point. The creaking becoming
louder as her movements became even more heated. In truth, the
whole damn thing could fall apart, but she wouldn't stop
ramming her body against her lovely bard. Xena speeded up her
efforts, earning lustful praise.
yes!" Gabrielle exclaimed, her hands firm on Xena's broad
shoulders pulling her in closer with each thrust. "Gods,
There were amazons
wandering all around outside. The warrior knew they could hear
their queen's cries of pleasure and it started her blood
racing again. She knew many women in the village watched
Gabrielle with great interest. Many of them wondered what a
night with the queen would be like but none would be stupid
enough to challenge Xena to ever find out. But it was more
than that too. Gabrielle would have none of them. Xena was
assured in the fact the bard wanted her and her alone. The
thought of the bard's devotion and the idea that her admirers
could hear them going at it, sent the warrior over the edge.
"I can't hold
it," Xena muttered. She wanted to wait for Gabrielle. She
wanted Gabrielle's pleasure to come first.
understood. "Don't hold it," she ordered, her
fingernails now digging into the warrior's leg. "Scream
That did it for
Xena. Any reserve she felt ran away with the bard's request.
Her name cried out
in what sounded like agony, yet knowing it was all pleasure,
pushed Gabrielle over her climax.
total happy, Xena slummed down next to the bard.
Instinctively, Gabrielle rolled with the warrior, snuggling in
incredible," Xena whispered, placing a long, affectionate
kiss on the top of Gabrielle's soaked head.
"Not so bad
yourself there, Warrior Mine," the bard answered, making
figure eights on Xena's sweat coated stomach.
in all the battles I've ever been in, I've never sweated as
much as when you get into these 'moods'."
Gabrielle moved to
her elbow to meet Xena's eyes. "And what mood would you
be talking about, umm?"
"Absolute lust." Xena grinned.
sound like a complaint," the bard teased.
Xena agreed. "Not a complaint at all. I love it when
you're on fire like that. When you ache for my touch... Don't
get me wrong I love taking the time to caressing every part of
each other, but some nights... "
The warrior trailed
off so the storyteller finished. "Some nights you just
want action. A hot ride between your legs and nothin' more. No
endearments. No promises. Just sex for the sake of sex."
Xena smiled and had
to laugh. The bard knew her - she knew her well.
she agreed pulling the bard back to her shoulder.
usually on the same trail." Gabrielle smiled against Xena's
Xena sighed. "You have no idea how much I love you; how
thankful I am that we're so much in 'tune' with each
"I think I
have more of an idea than you think," Gabrielle teased,
going back to drawing her number on the warrior's skin.
"I'm glad you
do, Beautiful. But that isn't going to stop me from telling
you," Xena answered. "Not at all."
Xena wasn't feeling
very well - too much ale the night before at the festival, she
was sure. The warrior's upset stomach, however, didn't stop
the duo's travel plans. They left the amazons promising to
return for Ephiny's bonding ceremony. Ephiny was sad to see
her friends leave, as were many other amazons, but she was
hopeful at their soon return. Perhaps by that time the queen
would be carrying an heir to the throne within her womb.
Night had begun to
fall in the tiny village they had stopped in for the evening.
Xena sat sipping cider as they summed up the locals at the
him?" Gabrielle asked, point to a young man, dressed like
Actually they all
dressed like farmers Xena deduced. He just didn't look unique
enough for the warrior.
plain," Xena shot down.
Xena looked over at
prospect number two. "Too young... He'd faint before we
even got him to our room." Xena smiled.
How about that guy?"
Xena noticed where
the bard pointed. "Too old. His heart would attack
Gabrielle signed in
frustration. "Fine... you pick," the bard replied
Just then a man
walked in - mid-twenties, handsome face, tall, dark features.
He even had decent teeth. Now this has potential Gabrielle
thought. "What about him?" she asked the warrior.
Xena sized him up.
Hoping; searching for some negative aspect... yet coming up
empty. Sure enough. If ever there would be a man in this town
who could fit the bill, they had just found him.
"Okay," Xena said reluctantly. "But what do we
upstairs," she told the warrior. "I'll walk over.
I'll bat my eyelashes and lead him to our room. From there we
can play it by ear."
Xena studied the
warrior for a moment. "I'm not so sure I should leave you
down her alone," the warrior answered.
"I'll be fine.
I can take care of myself and if he plans on taking me
somewhere else I'll simply walk away, going straight back to
our room alright?"
Xena nodded and
downed the last of her cider. "Yell if you need me."
"Always." The bard grinned.
Xena walked up the
staircase and looked down at the bard one last time before
slipping into their room. As she closed the door she prayed
things would go alright. What exactly was alright, she wasn't
sure. Gabrielle was a beautiful woman. Any man would love to
have her as a prize on his arm. And Gabrielle did have a thing
for guys like the stranger down stairs - pretty boys. Men who
looked young with dazzling smiles. What if she decides she
Xena replied, noticing that she was pacing. "We've been
over this. She wants me. Only me. And a baby. And since I
can't give her a baby, I'll just have to let some stranger...
do that... I'll just put the ground rules down."
As Xena finished
talking to herself the door opened. It didn't take Gabrielle
nearly as long as she thought. The man froze when he saw Xena.
that?" he asked timidly.
bondmate," Gabrielle answered. "She's very
open-minded. She knows that I need a man now and then so she
let's me. Besides she likes to watch... Is that a
The man wasn't
exactly sure how to respond. The warrior didn't look too
friendly or keen on the idea of him being there. But he took
another look at the beautiful blonde seducing him and he
succumbed. "No... no problem."
Xena could feel her
stomach turning again like earlier in the day, but she knew it
wasn't the same reason. She and Gabrielle decided that they
wouldn't disclose the true nature of this rendezvous with any
man they encounter. The man may have second thoughts if he
knew the matching may (hopefully) result in producing a child.
The false story was now very unsettling for Xena.
"Here are the
rules," Xena threatened. "You can touch her. You can...
take her... But don't you dare kiss her."
"Look, I'm not
sure if this is such a good idea. I mean, don't get me wrong,
you're a beautiful woman, but –"
He didn't finish.
He turned to look at Gabrielle only to find the bard naked
from the waist up. "You were saying," she replied,
reaching out stroking his already erect cock. When he didn't
answer, Gabrielle pulled her skirt away, along with her boots.
"You've got something I need," Gabrielle mewed
seductively, leading him, literally to the bed by his anatomy.
Xena turned her
head. It was one of the times she felt damned that her hearing
was so acute. She could hear their breathing change - not just
his, but Gabrielle's as well. She couldn't watch this she
decided and kept her head turned.
Again her eyes
couldn't see but her ears gave her a perfect picture. She was
unbuckling his belt now. Soon after, his trousers fell to the
floor. With a creak of the bed she knew he was on top of her.
After a few minutes the creaking became rhythmic and the
warrior knew just what he was doing to Gabrielle. Her
Gabrielle. Her bondmate. Her bard.
But even among
these sounds, a new one struck her ear. She wasn't even sure
how she got there. One moment she was next to the window, the
next moment she was standing over the man who was inside her
lover. A man who was gasping for air while an irate bard
shouted at her.
"Take it off
Xena!" the bard yelled. "Take it off now or you'll
Xena wasn't quite
sure of where she was at the moment or what she was doing but
the man's bleeding nose gave it away. Quickly she released the
pressure points on his neck. And she realized finally just
what she had done.
sorry," Xena replied as the man scrambled to his feet.
"But you didn't play by the rules. I told you. NO
kissing," she said menacingly.
beautiful, sweetheart," he told Gabrielle as he quickly
finished putting his clothes 'somewhat ' in place. "But
you ain't worth my life."
Xena jumped like
she was going to dart at the man and he scrambled to the door,
knocking himself in the forehead with it, in his haste to
leave. Xena moved over and locked it once he was gone with a
satisfied grin on her face. When she turned she found
Gabrielle looking less than satisfied. In fact, she looked
"What is wrong
with you?!" she demanded in a heated whisper. "You
could've killed that man. Do you realize that?!"
The grin fell from
the warrior's face as she remembered just what that man was
doing moments before.
alive, ain't he?" she replied, trying to act casual,
recognized it - the warrior walls were going up. But she
wasn't going to let that happen. She lightened her tone and
walked over to the warrior who was now looking out the window
Xena," she said, wrapping around Xena's arm. The warrior
carefully slid away.
touch me yet," Xena asked.
quite sure how to place the sound in Xena's voice. Was it
anger. Perhaps hurt. Even a little disgust, maybe.
wrong?" Gabrielle asked. "Why... why won't you let
me comfort you?"
answer. It was ridiculous. How could she tell the bard she
didn't want her to touch her after that man had...
"I'm going to
stay in the stables tonight. Take the room. It's paid
for," Xena instructed. Before Gabrielle could pose an
argument Xena left.
The bard stood
naked and slack jawed. What in Tartarus just happened here?
she asked herself. She didn't wait long. She yelled once
for her bondmate as she began collecting their belongings.
Xena heard the thud
of their saddlebags and turned around.
"What are you
doing?" she inquired.
we're staying out here tonight, I thought I should bring our
things along too," the bard replied. She picked the bags
back up, bringing them closer to Argo.
"WE are not
staying out here. I'M staying out here and YOU'RE taking the
room. It's going to be cold out tonight and the room is
already paid for," Xena argued.
Gabrielle shook her
head defiantly. "No... I stay where you stay - be it here
or in that room. Either way, we sleep together."
"I told you,
it's going to be cold –"
keep me warm like you always do," Gabrielle replied,
shutting out any excuse Xena would give. She walked closer and
put her hand on the warrior's shoulder. The gesture, however,
didn't comfort the warrior. Instead, she flinched. And this
time the bard couldn't ignore it.
"What is it?!
Since that man touched me I'm not allowed to touch you?! Is
that it?!" she shouted, throwing her hands up and
starting to pace in front of her lover. "Really Xena! I
am not going to spend the rest of my life having you brooding
over the fact someone else touched me. And if you don't want
me anymore, I'll leave," Gabrielle added. The reality of
the words she just spoke sunk in and she began to cry. Not
wanting Xena to see her tears she ran toward the door.
Xena realized if
the bard made it out the barn door she may never see Gabrielle
again and that spurred her into action. She raced behind the
amazon queen and turned her around by the arm. She clutched
the bard tight to her chest as Gabrielle continued to cry.
"I love you,
Xena," the bard choked between tears. "But I can't
stay if you're repulsed by me now. I can't handle that."
Xena stroked her
strawberry blonde hair, trying to calm the shaking
leave," Xena whispered. "Don't leave... C'mere."
Xena lead Gabrielle
to the blankets she had placed in the hay for a make-shift
bed. The bard's tears had stopped but her body still fluttered
now and then as she lay on Xena's shoulder. Xena inhaled the bard's
fragrance. "Lilacs?" she asked.
"I washed up
after you left. I thought that maybe it would help... I mean,
I thought maybe you could tell... Oh, Xena –"
please," Xena answered closing her eyes. "You
thought you'd try to wash away what happened, right?"
nodded at first. "I figured maybe that's why you didn't
want me around - that his scent was still on me," the
bard began explaining all over again; sitting up.
Xena held up her
hand stopping the bard; smiling all the while.
I have to admit I like the lilacs much better."
for the first time since she entered the barn and Xena felt
relieved. Feeling more secure, Gabrielle nestled back into
Xena's shoulder again until a comfortable silence fell over
Gabrielle asked softly.
"What are we
going to do?" the bard asked, the desperation evident in
pulled Gabrielle closer. "Actually, I've been thinking
about it since I left. The thought of that stranger caressing
you and... touching you... Let's just say it bothered
been through this. I have to sleep with someone if we –."
"It's not just
that Gabrielle... I think our child should know its father on
some level. I think we should know him and have contact with
him. I've noticed illness can carry down in families and if we
have that information the child would be better off just from
a healing stand-point."
Gabrielle moved to
her elbow. It was obvious Xena had given this a great deal of
thought. She even seemed almost excited by the plan which is
more than what she could say for their other ideas. "And
just where do we find this all magical, wonderful
that's the difficult part. It has to be someone we know.
Someone we agree on. Someone who won't be with us every single
day, but visits often. Someone who, although may not seem very
brave, has always been there when we needed him."
you have someone in mind?" Gabrielle asked skeptically.
Gabrielle's expression of uncertainty scooted away as
disgusted rage took hold.
"You even say
the name Joxer and I am cutting off sex for the next 12
Xena had to laugh
Gabrielle was not
amused and added, "I'm serious Xena!"
obvious," the warrior chuckled. The bard still didn't
look appeased. "Okay, okay! It's not Joxer! Besides if
you slept with Joxer he'd be around every week. And if you
bear his child? Ha! We'd never get rid of him."
"So what's the
plan?" Gabrielle asked with great interest, especially
since Joxer was now out of the running.
"Are you sure
you want to hear it?" Xena asked.
like a wonderful idea so far," Gabrielle commended.
The warrior gave a
bashful grin. She wasn't sure why. After all she was a woman
of 'many skills'. She figured it was just the beam of respect
in Gabrielle's voice for her that did her in this time.
Xena replied with a nod, seating up too so they sat face to
face. "Here's what I've been thinking... "
They traveled for
two days. Finally they reached their destination. Xena sent
Gabrielle to the inn to get a room for the evening and Xena
took to searching the streets of Arcadia. It didn't take long
and she reached her target.
"What's a nice
guy like you doing in a place like this?" she asked as
she walked up to a merchant tent to stand next to the handsome
What you brings you here?" her asked politely.
"I need a
favor," she replied, cutting right to the chase.
Well, I'm a bit rushed at the moment. I'm just picking up some
supplies before I head to Athens. I'm a busy man, people need
my help all over the place. So, if you'll excuse me... "
He began to walk away, but Xena had a solution.
"I need you to
sleep with Gabrielle," she offered with a brief pause.
"Of course, if you're too busy, I totally understand. I'm
somewhat in demand myself, times being what they are."
In one fluid
movement, he rotated himself around on his heels to face the
listening," he said dryly.
Xena smiled in
victory. "Thought that would pique your interest... Let's
take a walk."
me?" he asked.
not?" Xena replied.
I'm handsome and dashing. Quick and witty –"
long-winded and egocentric," Xena interrupted.
devilishly. "Always the sweet talker, huh, Xena? You
really know how to turn a guy on."
Xena giggled too.
"You really wanna know why?" she asked, growing
"As long as it
isn't because Hercules is out of town this week, I'm willing
Xena shook her
head. "It's because you're perfect for our plan.
Gabrielle and I trust you with our lives... we have entrusted
our lives to you in times past... and like I've said before,
under that smug, greedy exterior lies a very good man."
Her rolled his
shoulders as he sighed. "Not so loud, okay? I've got a
reputation to protect."
Xena ignored the
comment and went on. "You like your freedom so you won't
be a constant force in the child's life. But you would care
enough to visit a few times during the year. And I also know
that if anything ever happened to me and Gabrielle you would
still be there for our child. You lost your own family when
you were young and you know what it feels like to not have
that connection... Gabrielle and I have given this a lot of
thought... So I'm asking from the bottom of my heart - Give
Gabrielle what I can't. Please help us, Autolycus."
The king of thieves
stood for a moment playing with his goatee, thinking of
everything Xena had just said.
time," Xena added. "It has to be something you're
sure of, and if you decide that you can't do it, there'll be
no hard feelings, okay?" Auto nodded his head in
understanding. "We're staying at the inn here in town.
Why don't you meet us for breakfast tomorrow. Then, at that
time if you have any questions, you can ask us alright?"
good," Auto agreed. "And I will think about
everything you said. About the responsibility. About the
trust. And most definitely a beautiful, strawberry blonde with
He didn't finish.
Xena had him by his chest hairs. "Yes, Autolycus. Think
about it all, but do it silently, okay?"
Xena," he answered fast pulling her hand from his chest,
taking a few hairs along. "Owww! I'll see ya
Xena smiled before
turning back to the inn. She was sure the bard would want to
know all the details.
"I think we
should see a healer, Xena?"
nothing," Xena brushed off. "Just a flu bug. Nothing
Gabrielle had that
look. Xena recognized it. And she waiting. "Fine,"
the bard replied throwing her hands in the air. "I just
think that it's unusual for you to be this ill. And besides
that, it's lasted much longer than your illness of times
Xena closed her
eyes and rested her fingers on her eyebrows, hoping to relieve
the tension behind them. It was way too early to already start
the day bantering back and forth.
"I'll make a
deal. If I still feel sick when we get back to Amazon country,
I'll go see Terris, okay?"
It wasn't quite what she wanted to hear but it was a
compromise. "Agreed," Gabrielle nodded.
"Room for one
more?" Autolycus asked as he walked up.
Xena replied and motioned to a chair. "You're up awfully
early," she chided.
questions," he replied.
Auto took a deep
breath first. "Okay. If I agree to do this where exactly
will you be, Xena? Are there any rules attached to this
'union'? And if I happen to break a rule, what will happen to
me? I have my 'assets' to protect, if you catch my
us," Gabrielle spoke up. "so we would probably be
alone... although... I'd like to have her there."
"You want her
to watch us?" Auto asked.
"No. I want
her to join us," Gabrielle remarked, matter of factly.
Xena and Auto held
similar expressions of shock. "Really?" they both
asked in harmony after a few quiet heartbeats.
Gabrielle looked at
both of them as she nodded. "Yes. I have my
"Why you wild
woman, Gabrielle! Who would have thought such an innocent
young girl could have such a naughty side," Auto teased.
"But then again, what else could I expect from the
consort of Xena: Warrior Princess."
That comment earned
him a slap behind the head from the warrior and he ducked to
avoid another. Xena ignored him, once again focusing fully on
Gabrielle. "Are you sure?" she asked.
"I want you there with me. Holding me. Loving me. I think
that's what a large part of the problem was before... We're
having this child because we love each other - we're committed
to each other - so I think it's only right that we engage in
the conception together... Of course, if Autolycus doesn't
think he can take us both on at once... " the bard
"Now hold it
right there," Auto replied, waving his finger. "I'm
more man than the two of you can handle."
Xena snorted and
rolled her eyes. With the smallest of grins, Xena turned to
Auto. "Does that mean you're up for the challenge?"
"I'm up for a
lot of things at the moment," he said adjusting his
position in the chair, searching for a comfortable way to sit.
"Especially, the challenge."
Xena and Gabrielle
the warrior said starting to rise from the table. "Let's
"Now hold on!
Hold on!" Auto said motioning for Xena to sit back down.
Silently she complied. "I still have a few questions if
you don't mind?"
ahead," she answered pointing at Gabrielle.
Auto adjusted his
shirt as if he was still offended and he cleared his throat.
"As I said before, I want to know if there are any
rules," Xena replied quickly before Gabrielle could
reply. "As long as you don't have any designs on winning
Gabrielle's favor that is."
enough," Auto replied.
else?" Gabrielle asked.
Auto thought for a
moment. "One more question. How are we going to do this?...
I mean I know 'what to do' but is this a one time deal? Or are
we going to get a swingin' little pad here in Arcadia until
Xena wasn't nearly as amused when she began to answer. "I
figured you could stick around until she's 'ripe'. Perhaps for
a moon or until Gabrielle fails to get her next cycle."
"Ewww... I really don't want to discuss Gabrielle's
cycle. And you shouldn't either if you expect me to be 'in the
mood'. Feminine problems never interested me and I have no
intention of starting now."
"It's a part
of life," Xena retorted.
"A part for
you two. NOT me." Auto grinned.
now," Xena smirked while releasing the tinniest of
chuckles. "Is there anything else you'd like to
Auto nodded. "Why a baby? I mean you two have a great
independent life. You can go where you want. You can do what
you want. Why be tied down to a child?"
"I love Xena.
And the truth is that neither one of us are getting any
younger." Gabrielle grinned. "We won't be here to protect
the world forever. But if we have a child, raise the child
with all we've learned then maybe... in some way... we will be
here forever... and ever and ever. And since you're helping
Autolycus, so will you."
Gabrielle for a moment. Then he looked at Xena. "That's
was very eloquent and righteous. Wrong, I'm sure... but
eloquent and righteous. Now why do YOU want the baby?"
Xena smiled at his
sarcastic nature. "Because she does... And I think she's
then," he said standing up, hoping the warrior princess
would take his antics in good humor and not as a reason to
release any tension in those blood-flow-blocking fingers.
"Let's get this show on the road!"
Gabrielle told him. "We aren't going to do anything until
this evening... Besides we're not just going to use you for
stud Autolycus, so have a seat. Get a drink. Tell us what
you've been up to as long as it doesn't involve stealing from
old folks and orphans."
"I would never
Xena interrupted the offended man. "She was joking. You
really gotta lighten up."
He put his hand on
Xena's forehead. "Who are you and what have you done with
the ever stoic warrior princess?" Xena smiled and swatted
his hand. But soon he put it back up again feeling her skin
once more. "Xena, you're burning up. No joke... Are you
Xena began to argue
that she was fine, but Gabrielle reached over to have a feel
for herself. Xena swatted her away as well. The bard, however,
manage to touch the skin, if only for a moment.
should get a healer," Auto offered.
already. I'm okay. Just give it a rest!"
The table fell
silent. And Xena could feel them trying to look away from
sorry," she whispered. "I don't know why I shouted
at you. I know you're both concerned but I'm fine. Okay?"
No one spoke at the
tiny table. And Xena went back to rubbing her migraine.
"How are you
As Gabrielle asked
the question she crept behind Xena who was sitting on the edge
of the bed in only her nightshirt. The bard settled behind the
warrior; her legs along side Xena's. She snuggled between
Xena's shoulder blades after placing a light kiss on each one.
Xena reached down
and stroked the long legs beside her. "I'm a little
are you nervous about?" the bard questioned softly.
sure," Xena answered honestly.
"Me too... But I'm glad you're here."
you?" Xena asked. "I know that last time –."
different," the bard said cutting her off. "We know
Autolycus. He's doing us the ultimate favor by giving us this
chance and I love him for that. I love him, Xena, but my heart
- my soul - they belong to you... and you alone."
Gabrielle's flesh. The bard always knew the right things to
say and when to say them. She closed her eyes and melted into
the safety her bard was providing.
you," she whispered.
nothing, but Xena could feel the thin straps of her sleeping
shift escaping her shoulders. The bard's fingers were delicate
as they hooked around the material, caressing her skin as they
traveled down her arms. Soon, those fingers worked their way
up Xena's sides and over her breasts, teasing her nipples.
Gabrielle's lips began to care for the warrior's back with
"Are you sure
we should start without him?" Xena teased.
Xena felt the bard
change her position to sit on her knees. She leaned over and
the warrior watched the red golden mane of her lover cascading
over her own shoulder, feeling it tickle and entice her skin.
Gabrielle whispered seductively.
She took the
warrior's face in her hands and kissed her soundly;
passionately. Xena twisted around herself so they could be
face to face. Within a matter of a few short, desire-filled
kisses the bard was pulling the warrior down on top of her.
The feel of Xena's weight upon her aroused the storyteller to
no end. She could lay like this forever. Trapped beneath such
tender power as their tongues explored each other. Gabrielle
broke the kiss and lead Xena to her neck, arching back to
insure that Xena knew just what she wanted.
me," the bard ordered, burying her fingers deeper into
the raven hair of her lover. "Control me."
Xena latched onto
the bard's offered flesh with a small groan of desire. When
Gabrielle released a wanton sigh of her own, the warrior
thought she would soak the sheets with her arousal.
it," Gabrielle cooed. "Tonight, you control me. I'll
only do what you tell me to do."
Xena didn't get the
chance to respond. There was a knock at the door. They both
knew. It was Autolycus. Xena rose and Gabrielle took off her
shift completely and the sight made her catch her breath.
Xena readjusted her
shift on the way to the door, her arousal level still at an
Autolycus said smugly as he was met with Xena. "Look at
what we have here. You know –."
Before he could add
anything more, Xena pulled him inside, kissing him fiercely.
Gabrielle herself now felt a tinge of jealousy, but she knew
Xena would return to her. Always return to her. And in a
matter of minutes she would be making love to her. Touching.
As Gabrielle watch
Autolycus becoming stripped by the warrior she found her
fingers had made their way between her thighs. She laid back
on the bed and closed her eyes, thinking of Xena's wonderful
fingers and tongue caressing her intimately.
Auto was now
undressed as well as the warrior princess. And it was only
then that he saw Gabrielle on the bed, quite enthralled with
herself. This did not fit the picture of the innocent village
girl he had always believed her to be. By the Gods. Not at
all. This was no girl. This was a woman in every sense of the
word and the thought of being inside all that sexual energy
got is FULL attention.
Auto wasn't the
only one captivated with the sight. Xena watched Gabrielle for
a while, but noticed Auto was watching her as well. But
instead of the jealousy she felt with the stranger, pride took
over. She knew he wanted her, but she knew he would never
truly have her. There were many things he wouldn't do with
Things like this,
Xena thought as she smiled wickedly.
Xena's passion took
hold of her and she darted back to the bed, pulling the bard
to the edge by her ankles. She threw the bard's thighs over
her shoulders and began to drink from the well of her lover.
Xena," the bard sighed before her hand shot behind the
warrior's head to encourage her.
Oh indeed! Autolycus
thought as he watched the pair. After a few moments of
torture, he could stand it no longer and he found his own hand
drifting down to his sex, mimicking the movements of Xena's
tongue on her bard.
whispered, "So good" to Xena, Autolycus thought he
just might actually die where he stood. Well, perhaps not die,
but certainly ruin the plan they had settled upon.
He didn't want to
stop the fascinating display before him but he had to. He had
Xena turned to him.
He didn't say a word but she could read the look on his face.
"Go lay down," Xena said with a nod of her head.
Quietly, he did as he was told. It was only when the bed moved
that Gabrielle remembered that they weren't alone.
Xena leaned over
Gabrielle meeting eye to eye. "I call the shots,
right?" she asked.
without comment. And that wicked grin returned to Xena's face.
him," she ordered huskily. The tone set both Gabrielle
and Autolycus ablaze.
Gabrielle crept up
and straddled Autolycus' hips. Xena followed right beside her
and guide him inside. All three of them sighed as Gabrielle
made her descent. Xena moved behind the bard straddling Auto's
legs, getting a firm grasp on her lover's breasts. The
warrior's mouth latched onto the bard's neck as she set the
three of them in motion.
reached back to grab Xena's legs pulling her closer into the
bard. Gabrielle moaned long and hard - the warrior was behind
her, with erect nipples poking her back while Autolycus filled
her fully down below.
The only other man
Gabrielle knew was Perdicus. She felt the difference between
them immediately. Perdicus never reached this deep inside her,
but instead of being alarmed by the difference she loved it. Now
if only, the bard thought.
She didn't have to
finish it. It always amazed her how Xena could give her just
what she needed. She felt the warrior reach down and play with
her swollen nub as the three of them built a steady rhythm
Gods!" Gabrielle began with an excited whisper.
"Don't stop, Xena. Yes. Make me come."
shot back and she captured Xena's lips driving her tongue into
the warrior's mouth, just like Autolycus was thrusting into
her. Xena whimpered and clutched her own sex with her free
hand. She rubbed both their clits in time with each other. She
felt her hips bucking against the bard, wanting her release.
"You want it
bad, don't you?" Gabrielle asked, thick with passion. The
bard could tell Xena was aching at this point.
"I'm not going
to hold out," Auto warned. Xena moved away although it
took all her power. Soon Auto rolled until Gabrielle was
beneath him as he supported himself on his hands. His thrusts
came harder and faster and Gabrielle felt her orgasm take hold
Xena," she shouted. Her backed arched. Her eyes shut. And
her sex contracted around Auto. That did it. With a final
thrust, his head shot back and he groaned deep and long.
Gabrielle pulled him down to her shoulder to rest.
"I do all the
work," Autolycus mumbled exhausted. "And she still
gets all the credit," he teased pointing to the warrior.
Quietly, the women
laughed. Gabrielle reached out and Xena was there instantly,
curling up on Gabrielle's other shoulder. Her raging passion
of moments before subsided as she realized their first
'mission' was complete. She did it. She 'shared' Gabrielle and
everyone's blood was flowing just fine... well, maybe not just
fine but at least it wasn't being cut off.
you," Gabrielle whispered, placing a small kiss on Autos'
now sleeping head.
you," Gabrielle whispered, kissing Xena much more
passionately; certainly. After a moment, Xena shifted so
Gabrielle could get out from under Autolycus. The thief
snuggled into the blankets as the two women looked on. After a
few quiet moments Gabrielle turned to Xena.
"Now if I'm
not mistaken there's still something here left undone,"
that?" Xena asked innocently.
Now Gabrielle wore the wicked grin.
Autolycus?" Xena asked, motioning over with her head.
over onto her shoulder. "He's out... but I know you're
still rarin' to go."
"You know me
well," Xena observed.
"Like the back
of my hand," Gabrielle answered. And with that she took
her warrior, giving her the release she craved while the King
of Thieves slept soundly.
descended from the treetops as in times past. Auto watched the
gesture peace and joined Xena and Gabrielle in the movement.
"I guess this
is the end of the road," he remarked as the amazons
settled around them.
The trio had spent
three weeks together and Gabrielle had already missed her
cycle by a week and a half. They felt it was time to go 'home'
to the amazons. Besides Ephiny's joining was approaching and
they promised they would return. They weren't sure why but
there was almost a feeling of sadness around the departure.
Xena offered her arm.
she began as they grasped forearms, "you're welcome here
whenever you like. And I hope you do stop by from time to
time. But I also realize how much of a 'busy' man you
"I'm glad I
could help Xena. And remember if you need my 'services' for
future reference just look me up." He winked at her
before kissing the back of her hand.
Gabrielle stood on
her tip-toes and brought Autolycus cheek down to her planting
a soft, affectionate kiss. "Thank you," she
whispered. "And remember that signal we just did if you
ever want to visit."
"I'll try to
remember." He grinned.
that," Gabrielle insisted. "Because they may be
bringing you to see me in five pieces."
Finally, he looked
around to see the welcoming party burning their best
'hands-off the queen' glare. Auto giggled nervously. "I
see your point," he whispered. "So if you don't
mind, I'll be going now," he announced loud enough for
EVERYONE to hear him.
Xena and Gabrielle
locked arms as they watched Auto leave. Giving one final
salute, he walked from the tree line and out of sight.
"It's good to
have you home again, Queen Gabrielle," the guard
announced, breaking the duos observation on the king of
thieves. "May I escort you and the consort to Regent Ephiny?"
she nodded and within minutes they were met with a smiling
Regent and her consort-to-be, Diteria.
back," Ephiny remarked. "Do you bring good
news?" she added hopefully.
sure why but she felt herself blushing at the regent's
wonderful." Ephiny smiled and stroked the queen's upper arm.
"How was the trip in?"
Terris here?" Gabrielle asked.
Xena rolled her
eyes. But before she could respond Gabrielle cut off the
argument with three words, "You promised me."
Xena grumbled. "I'll see her but I feel fine today."
A few minutes later,
Xena found herself sitting in the healer's hut on the
examining table, stripped of her leathers.
again. How long have you felt sick?" Terris asked,
pushing on Xena's belly.
left. Two moons or so," Xena replied watching the
healer's hands. "Would you stop that?" she added,
moving her hands away gently.
down," Terris ordered softly.
without argument and Terris started pushing again.
Xena replied. "But like I said I've been sick every day.
Muscles get sore. What's the point?"
Terris asked Xena
to scoot down to the end of the table and she gently spread
the warrior's legs.
"What are you
doing?" Xena asked a little concerned.
me," Terris answered as she tried to insert her finger
inside. The warrior clinched tight. "Close your eyes and
think of Gabrielle," Terris teased. When she felt the
warrior relax for the briefest of moments she gain entry.
After a few more moments the warrior sighed with frustration.
"Are you done
yet?" Xena asked impatiently.
Terris removed her
fingers and turned back to the wash bowl. "Sure am,"
she replied taking off her smock and washing her hands.
with me?" Xena started. "Nothing. Right? It's just a
flu bug, isn't it?"
turned around and walked back to Xena. She didn't know if
Gabrielle was in the next room so she lowered her voice.
not a flu bug Xena... You're with child."
Xena laughed out
loud. "I think you should check again because that can't
be possible. I've had a child and I know what happens. I never
got sick with Solan and I haven't had sex with a man in...
gods know how many years... "
"Well, I can't
explain it," Terris replied. "I only know what I see
and feel. You're a healer, Xena. Have you examined
yourself?" Xena shook her head and Terris waved her hand
in a gesture that said 'see for yourself'.
Xena laid back down
and pushed her finger deep and high, feeling around. Terris
watched as a sense of panic took over the warrior.
feeling a little tight lately?" Terris smiled in victory.
Xena nodded still
somewhat in shock.
"Oh my G-Gods,"
she stuttered. "How can this be?"
being truthful about not having a man–."
"Look, I told
you I haven't been with anyone except Gabrielle."
Xena," Terris nodded, "but you felt the same thing I
"How far along
do you think I am?" Xena asked.
"You're a few
months ahead of Gabrielle so you shouldn't be having the
babies at the same time, which is a relief." Terris smiled.
Xena thought back.
A few months. Right around the time she and Gabrielle decided
to come to the amazons for help. How can this be? Xena
thought silently once more. But she realized she would have a
much greater problem on her hands. How will I tell
Gabrielle? She'll never believe me. She'll think I...
go," Xena said struggling with her leathers as quickly as
Terris could tell
what was racing through the warrior's mind and as Xena began
to make a hasty exit she called out to her.
"Xena. If you
need me, you know where to find me," she offered
Xena walked out
after a short nod. She had to tell Gabrielle and the sooner
Terris say?" Gabrielle asked, breaking her conversation
with Ephiny. She could see the worry on Xena's face.
"We need to
talk," Xena replied, looking directly at the bard.
stuff to see to," Ephiny answered quietly. She was
fearful. Xena didn't usually look scarred. Come to think of it
she never saw the warrior look scared. Hurt. Yes. Pain. Yes.
Angry. Most definitely. But never scared.
Gabrielle led Xena
into the royal hut without comment and only when the door was
shut tight did she speak.
sick," Gabrielle started to sob. "How bad is
sick," Xena answered, trying to calm the bard. She
debated about what to say next. How could she put this so the
bard would understand? She realized there wasn't a way to do
it. Tartarus, Xena thought, I don't even understand
"Well, what is
it then?" Gabrielle prodded when the warrior didn't
Xena took a deep
breath. "I'm pregnant," she answered.
held no reaction. After a moment of silence, Xena waved her
hand in front of Gabrielle, but it was almost as if the bard
made a noise. "Pregnant?" she asked.
She said the words
but the bard still looked distant. She watched as Gabrielle
slowly moved away, taking a seat on the bed.
I'm about three months along. That's why I've been sick
without losing any weight. And as far as my cycle, they
haven't been as hard but they have been my usual three days
and I didn't think –."
Gabrielle asked, as if she hadn't heard a word Xena said.
"How can you be pregnant?"
know," Xena muttered.
"Are you sure
you don't know?" Gabrielle asked, the accusation heavy in
her voice. "Were you with Autolycus without my
Xena insisted. "Besides I'm too far along. Terris
suspects I was pregnant at least one, maybe two months, before
we even met up with him."
more coherent now. Xena watched and she could tell the bard
was doing the math in her head. Finally, her eyes glared up at
Xena. "That town," she said harshly. Xena could hear
the acidity in her voice. "Just before we came to the
amazons. We had that fight. I went to our room and you stayed
out - quite late I should add."
Xena thought back. Oh
no, she thought. She thinks I...
happened in that town," Xena insisted. "I told you I
went down the river and did laps back and forth."
story," Gabrielle replied.
Xena moved closer
to the bard, but Gabrielle bolted from the bed, away from her
grasp. "Gabri –."
Gabrielle cried. "Don't touch me!... Leave... Get
you gotta believe me," Xena pleaded.
don't," the bard whispered, wiping her tears. "Get
Gabrielle. I need your help here. I –"
Within two seconds,
two amazons were inside the hut - battle staffs ready. They
observed the scene with a great deal of confusion. Except for
the queen's now blood-shot eyes everything appeared to be
girls," Xena told them. "I'm on my way out."
Without argument or
fuss the warrior walked out. But not before stopping to watch
Gabrielle's turned back for a moment.
faithful," the warrior whispered as she opened the hut
door. When it shut with a slight bang, Gabrielle felt herself
jump - her nerves totally on edge.
for Princess Lila," she whispered to the guards. And
being the excellent guards they were, they adhered to their queen's
Lila called as she entered the hut.
She found her
sister sitting in a chair facing a window, her back turned
from the door. "She cheated on me, Lila. Just before our
last visit she... cheated on me."
Lila could hear the
pain, anger - even confusion in Gabrielle's admission. Lila
walked over and put her hands on the queen's shoulders.
sure?" Lila asked for clarification. "Did SHE tell
you that?" she added in a soft comforting voice.
her tear stained face toward her sister. "No. She insists
that she didn't, but... she's pregnant too."
pregnant?" Lila felt overcome with shock and had to take
a seat next to her sister. She couldn't believe that Xena
would betray Gabrielle in such a fashion. But they did say
things were pretty bad between them when they had arrived at
the Amazons the last time. "Where is she now?" Lila
"I sent her
away... She says she didn't know how this happened."
Lila had to ask.
"Why do you doubt her?"
extremely offended. "Who's side are you on?"
Gabrielle asked harshly.
"I don't want
to chose sides," Lila retorted. "I just want to know
what's going on. I mean if Xena says she doesn't know then I
honestly think she doesn't know. I understand that you're my
sister, but so is Xena, and I've seen the love she has for
really?" Gabrielle replied sarcastically.
Lila returned. "She had the chance to be with Nagen when
things were rough and she didn't take it, remember? Perhaps
once you cool down you'll see things more clearly, that's
reply. She knew her sister was speaking rationally. She wasn't
acting very mature about the situation and she suddenly felt
ashamed of her actions, sending the pleading warrior away.
What if Xena were telling the truth? What if she really didn't
know and she needed her help? Could it be possible? Could it
be... Gabrielle didn't finish the thought. She bolted
from the chair and yelled for the guards who promptly entered.
"Find Xena," she ordered. "Look everywhere and
bring her back here to me."
They nodded with
nobility and quickly went on their hunt. Lila rose and walked
to the door where Gabrielle stood preoccupied with her racing
back to Ruth." Lila smiled gently with reassurance. "If
you need me just send for me, okay?"
and watched her sister leave. It already felt like forever as
she waited for Xena's return.
Xena hadn't gotten
far. Ephiny had spotted her stalking from the royal hut and
promptly chased Xena down. Once she caught the warrior, she
talked Xena into coming back to the home she and Diteria were
Xena just finished
wiping her eyes for the fourth time when the two guards
interrupt Xena, but Queen Gabrielle requests your
presence," one of them said formally.
Ephiny and Diteria
both tried to give encouraging smiles, but Xena saw through
it. She herself put on a false air of reassurance. "I'm
on my way," Xena replied. And with that, the warrior left
the newly constructed hut.
When she entered,
Gabrielle was sitting on the bed. Xena couldn't describe all
the emotions within her at this moment. She felt her anger
taking hold but she held her tongue. She knew she was innocent...
well perhaps not innocent, but at least not guilty of doing
the things Gabrielle accused her of at this moment. She took a
deep breath letting it out slowly.
for me?" Her voice was calm, reserved; holding no judgment.
Gabrielle nodded in a similar tone. "I'm sorry for
doubting you," she added after a brief silence.
The queen held up a
single finger that quieted her consort.
remembering how far we had gone from where we used to be. I
assumed that... you cheated on me... but I have to take you at
your word, Xena. Which means if you don't know how this
happened, then we have to find out - together."
have no clue how..."
Gabrielle could see
the wheels turning in Xena's head as the warrior's words
it?" she questioned.
night!" Xena answered. "After Zagreus' sentencing.
That night we were in the tub, remember?!" Xena pleaded.
Oh yeah. She remembered.
"How could I
forget?!" she giggled.
Xena smiled too.
"I'm glad you remembered," Xena replied seductively
before becoming serious. "Something happened that night
that I didn't mention," she added.
Gabrielle asked, now even more intrigued.
someone in the room with us. With everything that happened
that week I just chalked it up to nerves - that I was still on
edge. But now I wonder... "
Gabrielle let the
warrior pause a moment. "The Gods?" she asked when
Xena didn't continue.
"But who, I don't know," she added.
certainly not, Ares," the bard announced; a small grin
starting to form. "Far be it for the God of War to give
us anything we want."
recognize Ares a mile away," Xena replied smiling as
well. "If it were him I'd know it in an instant."
then?" the bard implored. If her bondmate was truly
knocked up by some God she wanted to know and she wanted to
The warrior thought
a moment longer. "Athena," she whispered. "Her
temple isn't far from here. Maybe we could leave tonight. We'd
be there by morning and with any luck she'll give us the
answers we seek."
"What about Ephiny's
joining?" Gabrielle asked.
"It's at the
end of the week," Xena replied. "We've got time if
we leave tonight... Do you think you're up for
"I think you
should be asking yourself that question, Warrior Mine. You
look tired Xena," the bard answered, gently stroking a
dark circle under Xena's eyes. "Let's stay here tonight,
okay? First thing tomorrow we'll head out, alright?"
Xena knew she could
never resist her bard. "I'm glad you're always looking
out for me - letting me know my limits... Okay, we sleep
tonight and then we go."
As Gabrielle moved
into Xena's open arms, the warrior wondered if they would find
the answers they needed. It was a long shot. But who would
have thought a chatty bard and a strong, silent warrior would
be friends, much less bondmates. Sometimes long shots pay
off, the warrior thought silently.
Xena was up early
and had to roust the bard. Gabrielle did little complaining
though. She wanted to get on the road soon and find the
answers they sought. After a day on horseback they arrived at
"Can I help
you?" a young priestess asked.
"Yeah. I want
answers," the warrior replied, taking in their
surroundings as the pair walked to the alter.
"Do you have
an offering?" the priestess asked.
soul," Xena replied with a grin. "Which I must
confess, is very little."
"How wrong you
are," a voice called from behind.
Gabrielle and Xena
watched the priestess fall to her knees. As they turned around
they saw the aged god - not as old as Zeus but not as young as
questions," Xena began, trying not to sound too
Athena said nonchalantly. She walked over and took some grapes
off the altar, popping them in her mouth.
" Xena said rolling her hands, as the god chewed.
"I can't help
you, Xena," she said honestly. "The truth lies
within yourself. You know who created this child if you look
deep inside. YOU have all the answers."
nothing but a rage was beginning to boil inside her. Xena
knows!... She knows and yet she dragged us all the way out
said Xena knew of the baby's father. But still the warrior
didn't want to confess her infidelity the bard figured. The
longer she stood listening to Xena arguing her point to Athena
and the more Athena denied Xena's ignorance, the angrier she
it," Gabrielle yelled. "Take me back to the amazons.
This is pointless!"
answers, Gabrielle," the ex-warlord insisted. "Only
Athena can help us."
"She gave you
her answer, Xena," the bard bantered. "You know but
you just won't admit it. Or maybe you really don't know
because you were too drunk to remember. In any case, you're
pregnant. You deal with it."
faith," Athena whispered to the pair before she vanished.
What the Tartarus does that mean?!" Xena yelled at the
ceiling. She would have ranted a little more, but Gabrielle
was racing to the entrance. A few strides later, Xena caught
up and turned her lightly by the arm. Gabrielle batted Xena's
Gabrielle began. "This settles it. I'm going back to the
nation. You can go to Amphipolis or Athens or wherever... But
you're not coming home with me."
please listen to me," Xena begged. "Please."
reply. She mounted Ephiny's mare, which she borrowed for the
journey. With a sharp click of her heels the animal headed
into a gallop.
"I really hate
it when you, Warrior Princess, plead with that irritating
Xena felt her skin
crawl at the sound of the voice. She slowly turned around and
a thought occurred to her. "It WAS you," the anger
was rising in her voice. "You did this to me! Why you no
good, sack of –"
"Ah, ah, ah,
Xena," he tisked. "Watch your language. You've got a
child on the way and you'll want to practice watching that
filthy mouth." The God of War grinned. "But
seriously... think about it... Why would I want to give you
and Gabby-Mouth a baby?"
"Oh I don't
know... an heir to your throne. Or perhaps just a plot to
drive a wedge between me and Gabrielle.," Xena countered.
"Okay. I can
see the last part. And in truth I'm surprised I didn't think
of it first. The bard thinks you betrayed her. She thinks
you're unfaithful scum and, yes, there is certainly a wedge
isn't there?" He smirked.
Ares," Xena agreed. "A void. A TEMPORARY void. And
one that you will never be able to fill. So get lost, would ya
please? I have to figure this out."
coming back, Xena," he whispered close in her ear. Xena closed
her eyes against the words. "Come back to someone who
truly loves your talents; believes in you."
are a soulless bastard, Ares," Xena said shaking her
head. "But the only place I'm going back to is the
banished by the queen herself , Xena," Ares countered.
"If you walk back in there they just might kill
Xena grinned as she
mounted Argo. "Then I'll see ya in Tartarus."
Without delay Xena
kicked the horse into a gallop, back to the amazons; back to
through the Great Hall of Olympus.
"I see you
kept your word," the God noticed as Athena made her
she nodded. "I didn't like it, but I did it. I KNOW they
belong together and this little challenge of yours is
"We'll see my
dear Aunt. We'll see," he replied with a grin. "You
can't know true pleasure without knowing some true pain."
suffered enough," Athena pointed out.
they will have what they want in the end - a child. No favor
comes from the Gods without a price."
Athena threw her
hands in the air - giving up. The God was an idiot. She knew
it, but she also knew that Xena and Gabrielle would survive.
They had time. The baby wasn't born yet. In fact, it was
months away. All they had to do was profess their love in
spite of everything and they would be free from petty Godly
interference for the rest of their lives.
come together before this baby is born," Athena noted.
"They have plenty of time."
so?" He smirked mischievously before vanishing.
concerned with his smug statement. Could he perhaps...
? Would he maybe... ?... Oh no! Athena realized she had to
get to the Grand Throne Room and on the double. Xena and
Gabrielle's time was about to run out.
Gabrielle rode most
of the night; stopping to rest briefly before dawn. Xena
followed behind her. She didn't want to get involved in
another confrontation. So she stayed back in her travels but
close enough in case trouble arrived.
None did and they
arrived at the amazon village just behind each other. Once
Xena crossed the territory border, the patrol descended from
the trees. Solari was on duty and stopped the warrior.
"I can't let
you in, Xena," she whispered trying to stay neutral.
As Xena dismounted
Argo, it was then that Solari noticed something. Xena's
leathers were gone. She wore her sleeping shift. But what
caught her eye the most was Xena's enormous stomach.
Gods," Solari whispered in astonishment.
my theory too," Xena said dryly. "Please let me see
her. Let me talk to her. If she still wants me to leave at
that point Solari, I will. No discussions. No arguments."
Solari knew she
could be killed for disobeying the queen's direct order, but
she found it highly unlikely that Gabrielle could kill her
sister's bondmate. Besides Gabrielle HAD to see this!
Solari motioned the
patrol back into the trees. "Come on." Solari grinned,
giving Xena a friendly tug. "I'll take my chances with
the queen," she added.
finished pouring her heart out to Ephiny for the last hour. A
steady stream of tears came from the queen's eyes. Ephiny knew
there was nothing she could do to comfort the bard except hold
her. Suddenly, there was a knock at the door. Ephiny looked
angrily at the intruding noise. She released Gabrielle and
"I thought I
said I want no one to –."
Upon opening the
door, she saw Xena looking equally depressed and... much more
pregnant than when she left just over 24 candlemark.
Gabrielle rose from
the bed upon hearing the name and rushed over. "I told
you it was over, Xena. Why are you –."
when she saw Xena's accelerating state of pregnancy.
"I know what
you said, Gabrielle," the warrior answered. "But
please let me in. Talk to me and if you still want me to go I
Terris," Gabrielle ordered her regent as she helped the
warrior inside. As Ephiny left, Gabrielle led Xena to the bed.
"Oh gods, Xena. What's happening?"
"I don't know
but I can guarantee this is not some local villagers
handwork," she said motioning to her belly.
Gabrielle had no
choice but to agree at this point. "That's okay. I
believe you," she said beginning to sob. "I should
have believed you from the start, Xena. Oh Gods please forgive
Xena pulled the
crying woman close.
understandable," Xena whispered into the bard's bangs as
she held her. "It's not everyday someone gets pregnant
and... " Xena trailed off. Dahak. Hope. The tragic affair
flood her soul with a feeling of dread. Gabrielle felt the
warrior tense and she knew why.
history," she told the warrior. "All I care about is
here and now."
"Me too." Xena smiled,
relaxing once more. She didn't relax long, however, a slicing
pain ripped through her gut. As she winced Gabrielle knew
something was wrong.
it?" the bard asked. Xena didn't answer she just held her
stomach. "Is it the baby?" Xena nodded. "Do you
think the baby is coming?" Xena nodded again.
the bard yelled in a nervous sing-song. She walked to the door
as Terris and Ephiny walked in, meeting at the door way.
"The baby's coming," the bard announced.
soon," Terris answered. "She'll probably lose the
At least that was
Terris opinion before she saw the warrior, but after she
looked at the bed she said, "Well... maybe not. She looks
like she's going to burst."
Xena sat rocking
her body trying to ease the pain as three sets of eyes starred
"Are you gonna
stand there all day or are you gonna help me?" the
warrior asked impatiently.
Terris shook off
her shock and she rushed next to the bedside.
long have you been having pain?" Terris asked.
started," Xena replied, trying to focus on her breathing.
Xena," Terris coached. "Keep it up. Deep breathes.
Deep breathes. We'll get through this."
Xena called out. Instantly the bard was at her side.
Xena. I'm here. Can I do anything?" she asked.
me," Xena whispered softly before another contraction
"I won't leave." Gabrielle smiled.
"No. I mean...
Don't leave me ever. This baby –."
"This baby is
ours," Gabrielle said firmly. "I don't care who the
father is as long as we're together, okay?"
"Do you really
mean that?" Xena asked starting to sob.
Gabrielle wiped the
sweat from Xena's forehead.
"With all my
heart," she whispered placing a kiss on the warrior's
cheek. "All I care about is you at this moment."
An instant later
Cupid appeared at the end of the bed and peered between Xena's
wide spread legs. "Oh yeah." He grinned. "Annnyyy
"This is your
child?!" Xena exclaimed.
Cupid seemed a bit
confused at first. "What?!... Oh no. That's not my child.
I helped, of course, but all I did was answer a little prayer.
You wanted a child Xena, so I 'delivered' so to speak... But
first I had to be sure your hearts were true and guess what?
You babes passed!"
Xena," Terris said interrupting. "Time to
Xena did as Terris
requested. She wasn't sure what she should do. Should she lay
and continue with her labor as peacefully as possible or
should she try with all her might to rise and choke the God of
Love with her bare hands.
"She wanted to
have the child you idiot!" Xena screamed. "She's the
one you should've knocked up."
Cupid thought for a
moment and then grinned. "Oops! My mistake... well,
actually that's not true," he reconsidered. "Since
technically, it's Gabrielle's child too."
It was the collective voice of everyone in the room - warrior,
queen, regent and healer.
"Oh yeah! Did
I fail to mention it was the Gabmeister here that did the
deed? Like Athena said look in your heart. The only one you
love enough to have a child with is Gabrielle. You know that
Xena, so you knew the truth the whole time."
Xena yelled out
again but no one was sure if it was from pain or from her
frustration with the God standing before her.
"You mean you
put us through all of this for nothing," Gabrielle said
leaving Xena's side and menacing toward Cupid. The god of love
slowly crept backward, leaning away from the closing bard.
"You could've come to us and told us the truth,"
Gabrielle added poking his bard chest. "You could've let
us know what was going on."
"It was a
test," he explained meekly. "I had to be sure you
babes fit and sure enough you do so it's a done deal,
could respond again, Xena cried out again. Cupid took the
chance to escape while the bard's attention was diverted.
there," Terris said. "One more push."
around and watched Xena giving birth to her child - their
child. Terris grabbed the shoulders and gave a light yank. The
baby slipped gracefully into the healer's hands. Quickly, she
cleared the air passages and gave it a light tap on the rump.
The newborn, cried heartily and Xena couldn't contain her
laugh of joy.
ladies," Terris announced. "It's a girl."
Terris finish up the necessary procedures. After the baby was
cleaned, she collected her in her arms, bringing her to Xena.
The first thing Xena noticed was her hair. Thick and full like
her own, but the color...
"Look how red
her hair is," Xena pointed out moving the blanket down,
stroking the softness of it. "She's beautiful like her
mother," Xena wept with happiness.
is," Gabrielle replied, stroking the warrior's face.
"So beautiful," she added.
newborn daughter began to open her eyes. "Gee,"
Gabrielle teased. "What an interesting shade of blue?
Wonder were she got that from?"
Xena giggled softly
and place a gentle kiss on the baby's head before giving her
bondmate a similar one on the cheek.
"This is the
happiest day of my life," Xena whispered. "Thank
me?!" Gabrielle exclaimed. "You did all the
work," Gabrielle added.
according to Cupid, I couldn't have done it without you,"
Terris and Ephiny
realized it was time for the new family to be alone. And they
began to quietly make their way out. But before Ephiny made
her exit Gabrielle called to her.
she stated firmly, yet friendly. "Inform the nation. We
have a princess and an heir to the throne."
Ephiny's smile was
just as wide as Gabrielle's when she left the hut.
The next day, the
nation came to pay their respects to the tribes latest
arrival. Lila and Solari were the first to arrive that morning
along with Ruth, who had to see her little cousin.
The newborn had
gone unnamed which was highly unlikely in the Amazon society.
Names were usually chosen before the baby's arrival but given
everything that had happen, there wasn't much time.
Xena was in the
middle of feeding when Gabrielle returned from the tribal
meeting late in the evening. "How's my two favorite
girls?" she asked as she walked inside.
hungry," Xena replied. "It never fails. When I begin
to eat, she cries."
Xena balance the baby in one arm while eating with the other.
"You're pretty good at that." Gabrielle remarked.
Xena grinned slyly.
And Gabrielle saw it coming.
"I have many
skills," Xena replied.
softly and took a seat on the bed, losing her boots and
clothes; trading them for her sleeping shift. Quietly she
watched Xena and her daughter. HER daughter. A feeling of
pride unlike anything she had ever felt washed over the bard
as she watched the baby nurse.
She snuggled next
to the warrior/new mom and rested her head on Xena's shoulder.
Carefully, she stroked the baby's soft crimson hair. "I
never thought I could feel this... complete," the bard
whispered. "You know what I mean? The feeling that
everything makes sense. That I made all the right
exactly what you mean." Xena smiled. After a few moments of
watching her family, Gabrielle chuckled.
Xena asked with a growing grin.
what?" the warrior prodded.
Gabrielle sighed as
she searched for a starting point. "Did I ever tell you
about the goddess dream I had as a child?"
Xena paused brief
in consideration. "No. I don't think you have."
the bard began. "When I was young - about eight summers -
I had a dream. A beautiful goddess came to me and told me that
someone brave and noble would take me from Poteidaia. I asked
the goddess who this person was but she said I would know when
the time came. So for years I waited. Seven sunset before your
arrival I had the dream again. The goddess told me my time was
soon at hand. She said if I was courageous enough I had the
power to change the world."
"That's why you insisted upon following me. You thought I
was your destiny."
"Yes, but there's more. I knew you were my destiny
because the goddess who appeared in my dream was you... The
instant that I saw you, I recognized you. And I knew... I had
to be with you. You were - you ARE - my destiny."
Xena felt her tears
well up in her eyes. "I'm surprised you never told
me," Xena confessed.
you're my destiny? You should already know that by now,"
About the dream," Xena remarked.
Gabrielle admitted. "I guess I just never felt as
'complete' as I do now. Looking at you both made me realize
how fortunate I am. I think all of our destinies are written
out for us. But the choices we make decide how we'll get there
in the end... Like I said: I've made the right
"I'm glad you
still think so. More than glad. I'm ecstatic," the
yeah," the bard teased. "You sound real
"It's been a
long 24 candlemarks," Xena replied chuckled. "Waking
up every two hours, all night long, has drained my energy. But
it's done nothing in diminishing my love and admiration of
that," Gabrielle replied lightheartedly. "Here. Let
me see her," Gabrielle said holding her arms out. Xena
handed over the baby, who was now happily dozing. Gabrielle
put her on her shoulder and rubbed her back. A few moments a
latter a rather large burp came from the petite princess. Both
like you," the bard teased as she took the infant to her
"Even I'm not
that loud," Xena countered. Gabrielle paused a moment at
the baby's crib and reflected.
"Yes, I have
to agree with you. She's much more 'noisy'."
Xena smiled and
patted the bed as the bard came back over. Gabrielle moved the
dining tray. Without any more prompting the bard snuggled
tightly in the warrior's arms. "Get some rest,"
Gabrielle instructed. "I'll bring her to you tonight,
out for me, huh?" Xena replied in a sleep voice, closing
always will. After all... you're my destiny."
her eyes too and soon sleep claimed both of them... but only
for two hours.
to Part II