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Xena: Choose Your own Adventure #2


H = 24, X = 11

Xena pressed herself against the side of the cave.

She decided to wait for Kaleipus. About twenty minutes later, he showed up with the other centaurs. Xena nodded at Kaleipus, showing her next move. Kaleipus prepared the centaurs.

Xena was about to run into the cave, prepared for anything, when Solan ran out of the cavern.

"I got away from you, you big monster!" the boy yelled, starting to climb down the mountain.

"No! Solan!" Xena yelled, climbing down the mountain with her son.

"Xena!" Solan said, relieved that his friend was with him.

"Fall down - both of you!" Kaleipus yelled. All the centaurs stood in a circle, holding a huge blanket. Xena fell accidentally, landing on the blanket. She gasped. She didn't know that it could have broken her fall like that.

Climbing off the blanket nervously, she stared up at her son, several yards above them all.

"Jump, Solan!" Xena yelled to her son. Solan had hold of sturdy rocks, and was making his way down the cliff.

Solan shook his head. Polyphemus looked down the cliff and sniffed. His hand outstretched, he leaned down to pick up the small boy.

By reflex, Solan reached out to protect himself and let go of the cliff.

Hitting his side on the way down, he hit the blanket.

"Whew," he said, the centaurs cheering.

He climbed off his lifesaver, and ran to Xena's arms. Gabrielle looked on happily. Then everyone looked up silently. The centaur was ready to climb down.

"I'm going to catch and eat each one of you!" he yelled.

Panicking, a few centaurs reared and started to run away. "No!" Xena called. Everyone looked at her.

Xena motioned for everyone to spread out and hide. Solan and Gabrielle followed Xena.

"I'll eat each—" the blind Cyclops was cut off when he slipped on a rock and came toppling to the ground.

He screamed, landing on two figures off in the near distance.

"Who were—" Gabrielle began. Solan raced over to the dead Cyclops.

"Uncle!" Solan cried. Kaleipus lay motionless, his front half sticking out from Polyphemus' side. Another centaur also lay unmoving, stuck under the dead giant.

"Your uncle was a brave man," Xena put her arm around Solan, her own eyes watering.

Solan hugged Xena, sobbing.

"Are you going to tell him the truth?" Gabrielle whispered to Xena.

Xena nodded, looking at her son. She was ready to take on the responsibility.