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The Beast Within
THE BEAST WITHIN
It was a calm, beautiful day. The sky was blue, the leaves green, and
the wind cool and calm. A beautiful woman, clad in leather was walking
along a forest trail with her horse and a smaller woman, with a
"I love the outdoors, don't you?" said Gabrielle. "It's so open and
"Yeah," replied Xena,"it's pretty nice."
"Where are we headed?" asked Gabrielle.
"Well, I wanted to swing by Artera to get new gauntlets, but to get
there we have to pass through Parsa. And that's not a very inviting
"Why's that?" asked Gabrielle.
"The people there are very martial. They love everything about war.
There are massive temples to Ares."
"I don't like the sound of that, Xena. Not with him chasing you like he
does.Why not go to another city?"
"Artera makes the best armor in all of Greece, that's why. There is
another way, but if we go that way it might add another month to the
walk and we've been walking too long as it is," said Xena.
"Well, just keep a low profile, I guess," said Gabrielle.
"Don't worry," said Xena,"we'll be fine. We'll go in and just walk
through. No questions asked,"
"Okay," replied Gabrielle, hesitantly.
The next day, Xena and Gabrielle came to the walls of Parsa. They
could here the evil sound of Ares's chants and they could smell blood,
blood from the annual massacre of the lambs.
"I don't like it here already," said Gabrielle.
"Just stay calm, this is a city of butchers and murderers. Just stay
calm and we'll get out of here," replied Xena.
"What if one of these priests recognizes you?" asked Gabrielle.
"Let me worry about that," said Xena.
Just then Xena noticed that the chants from the temples stopped. Xena
looked back with curiosity as to why these High Priests would stop a
holy chant in the middle of it. Just then, she realized why.
"It is Xena!" yelled one of the elder priests, "The Warrior Princess!
We must capture her to fulfill the Will of Ares!"
"Oh no," said Xena.
From the priest's call came a small army of soldiers, about fifteen.
Fully armed and ready to do anything for Ares. Xena knew she would be
Xena and Gabrielle ran with all their speed, but to no avail. It was
as if the soldiers were multiplying. Soon, they were completely
surrounded. The High Priest, who was too old to run called yet again.
"Bring her here!"
The soldiers brought her to the High Priest.
"Bring her in the temple," said the Priest.
Xena was being forced inside while Gabrielle was held back.
"I go nowhere without my friend," said Xena motioning to Gabrielle.
"Hmmm...very well. Bring the pest, too!"
Xena and Gabrielle were brought into the temple with the High Priest.
It was a massive temple. Walls of solid marble and gold leaf. Statues
five times the size of Xena. An altar of pure silver with a silk cloth
draped over it.
"Amazing," said Gabrielle, never seeing such treasures.
"Now, leave us," said the High Priest to his soldiers, "I will talk to
the woman alone."
"But Emminence, she will certainly kill you," said one of the soldiers.
"Leave US NOW YOU SIMPLETON FOOL!" cried the Priest.
"Yes, Emminence!" said the soldier with fright.
As soon as the temple doors closed, Xena drew her sword and placed it
right to the Priest's neck.
"Give me one good reason why I shouldn't slit your throat right now!"
"Ares is very disappointed in you my child," replied the Priest backing
away from Xena's blade.
"First of all, I'm NOT your child, secondly, I don't give a DAMN WHAT
ARES THINKS!" cried Xena.
"Foolish girl," said the Priest. Then he looked to Gabrielle. "And you,
what do you think about all this?"
"I think Ares is a coward and a liar," said Gabrielle firmly but with a
tiny quiver for she knew what terrors the wrath of any god could bring
about, especially Ares.
"Also a foolish girl," said the Priest.
"Enough of this, we're leaving!" said Xena.
"Not until I say so!" said the Priest.
And with that the walls of the temple dissolved and they were suddenly
in a beautiful green forest.
"What in Hades?" said Gabrielle.
"What's going on!?" cried Xena.
"You are mine, Xena!" said the Priest.
Xena looked at the Priest and knew exactly what had happened. How they
were in the temple moments ago, and how now they are miles away. Xena
knew who he this Priest was. She said his name with concern and anger.
The old Priest morphed into the all too familar form of Ares.
"Hello, Xena." said the God of War.
"What do you want with me!?" cried Xena, "I thought we settled this!"
"I'm never giving up on you, Xena. And you know why?" asked Ares with
an evil grin on his face.
"Why?" asked Xena with anger.
"Because, MY Xena still lies within you. She is just dormant for a
while. We both saw her when....Daddy came home for a visit. Ha ha ha!!"
"You coward, are you so pathetic that you have to hunt Xena forever!?"
cried Gabrielle, tired of hearing this.
"Silence! You are the pathetic one!" cried Ares to Gabrielle. He then
released a powerful bolt of power from his hand which hurled Gabrielle
back at least 25 paces.
"Gabrielle!" cried Xena running over to her.
"I'm fine, Xena....wow, that smarts." said Gabrielle.
"Enough of this!" said Ares, "back to business. As I was saying Xena.
My former employee is still inside of you."
"I'm never coming back to you Ares." replied Xena.
"I don't want YOU, Xena. I want HER." said Ares.
"What are you talking about? You're insane." said Xena.
"Am I?" asked Ares, "there is a Beast within you, Xena. And she wants
to come home, to me!"
Ares then raised his hands to the sky and looked Xena straight in the
eyes. A cold chill ran threw her. Suddenly, the clouds began to circle
and grow grey. Red and blue lightning filled the air.
"I want the Beast within you, Xena!!" Ares called over the crashing
noise of his power.
"NO!" said Xena forcefully.
Suddenly a bolt of blue lightning struck Xena and held her. She was
screaming with a pain heard only in the bowls of Tarturus. She writhed
in pain, when a red bolt struck her as well. Gabrielle ran to her, but
was thrown back with the ultimate fury of Ares. Xena screamed in
hellish terror, bt Ares continued his beseige upon her. Gabrielle
looked up from her now near-unconscious state and saw something she
"Impossible," she whispered to herself.
Then with a powerful flash, the bolts finally released the Warrior
Princess.She was thrown back and Ares stood over her laughing. Then
Ares vanished. The lush green forest turned into an Inn, one located in
Artera. They were in the lobby of the Inn. Gabrielle was kneeling next
to Xena's limp form.
"Xena!?" she cried, "Xena, speak to me!! No, you're not dead! Come
Three hours later......
Xena barely opened her eyes, and saw Gabrielle.
"Gabrielle..." Xena said still under the effects of Ares's attack.
"Xena! Thank the gods you're alright!" said Gabrielle softly. "Oh, the
Innkeeper saw what condition you were in and gave us a room for free.
Temporarily, of course."
"What happened?" said Xena, trying to get up. "I felt a powerful shock,
and something I can't explain..."
Gabrielle cut her off.
"I know, I saw it. It was as if I saw you splitting in half. There was
another Xena. Of course, it might have been that my vision was blurred
and I was seeing double. But then everything went white and we were
suddenly in the Inn, and you were
"I know what happened," said Xena, "I understand now what Ares meant
when he said he wanted HER."
"Tell me," said Gabrielle.
"The old Xena is still inside me, or I should say WAS. Ares removed
her. He took everything that was ever evil about me and he solidified
it into another Xena. She's out there, and I've got to stop her."
"You mean....there are two Xena's now?" asked Gabrielle.
"Yes. And most likely Ares has the second one looking just me, to
destroy whatever reputation I've made as a peacemaker. I've got to go."
"You're not going anywhere without me!" said Gabrielle.
Xena and Gabrielle left the Inn and thanked the kind Inkeeper for
helping them. They went out to find the evil Xena.
"She could be anywhere," said Xena.
"We'll find her," said Gabrielle.
Just then Xena jerked back and looked forward blindly. She was
terrified of whatever she was seeing.
"Xena, what's wrong!?" Gabrielle said with concern.
"Stop, stop it! You're hurting them!!" yelled Xena. But to whom?
"Xena! Who are you talking to?" said Gabrielle, now scared that her
friend was losing her mind.
"Stop! Stop you bitch! They never did anything to you!!" cried Xena.
"Xena! Snap out of it!!" said Gabrielle.
Gabrielle grabbed Xena's shoulders and shook her. Xena began to fade
out of her illusionary state.
"Gabrielle," said Xena. She was staring into Gabrielle's eyes, looking
as if she were about to burst into tears.
"Xena!? What was that!?" asked Gabrielle.
"She's killing people. Men, women, children. She's slaughtering them
all. She has an army. Ares must have given it to her. By the gods.
She's destroyed hundreds in a few hours."
"How do you know that?" asked Gabrielle.
"I see it. I can see through her eyes. I can't explain it. We are two
halves of the same whole. I can see through her, and, and...." Xena now
looked very troubled.
"And what?" asked Gabrielle, frightened as much as her friend.
"....and she can see through me." said Xena.
"You mean..." said Gabrielle, as Xena cut her off.
"Yes. Everywhere we go, she'll see. But everywhere she goes I'LL SEE AS
WELL!" said Xena with a fire in her eyes.
"Let's get her," said Gabrielle.
Xena and Gabrielle walked along the wooded path. Gabrielle could still
see the shock in Xena's eyes after seeing the terrible torment her other
self was putting those innocent families through. Hearing the army
chanting her name. It terrified her.
"Xena?" asked Gabrielle. She did not receive a response.
"Xena? What are we going to do about her?" asked Gabrielle again. Xena
snapped back into reality.
"What? Oh. I don't know," replied Xena.
Suddenly there was a burst of light ahead of them. A man with long dirty
blonde hair appeared before them. He had on a leather wardrobe and he was
holding a helmet under his arm. Xena and Gabrielle stopped short.
"Hades," said Xena, "all we need..another god."
"I am exactly what you need Xena," replied the Lord of the Underworld.
"Hades, with all due respect, we don't have time for this," said
Gabrielle, "we've got sort of a crisis on our hands."
"Why do you think I'm here?" asked Hades. He turned his attention to
Xena. "Look Xena. We need to get down to business. Keep in mind, I'm not
here because I like you. You did me a great favor when you got back my
Helmet of Invisibility, so I have to repay you. This is my repayment."
"I don't want anything from you Hades," said Xena walking past, with
Gabrielle on the side of her. Hades now began walking behind her.
"You may not want anything from me, Xena," began Hades, "but you need
Xena turned around and stopped. She looked Hades in the eye, and looked
"Alright, Hades. You got two minutes. Make it good," said Xena.
Hades began, not amused by Xena, "Ares, as I'm sure you already now, as
divided your soul, your very essence into two whole beings. You and the
other Xena. This is an ancient practice. Some gods used it to torture the
innocents. It was outlawed on Olympus by Zeus centuries ago. Of course,
Zeus never really was much for reprimanding his gods. Ares was never much
for rules and regulations, so its a good relationship, for Ares anyway."
"Go on," said Gabrielle, becoming more interested.
"For now, the seperation is temporary, but if the sun falls and rises
three times, and the soul is not rejoined, the effects are permanent. The
soul is permanently divided. Right now, your sould is not completely
divided. Otherwise, you would be happy and giddy, and smelling the
flowers without your bad side. You still have her, and she still has you.
I know that you've realized that you can see through each other. You must
use that to track her down."
"Why is it there's always a three day limit!?" asked Xena.
"I don't know, I don't make up these rules," said Hades.
"Who does?" asked Xena.
"Can we please get back to business, your soul is at stake!" said Hades.
"Alright," Xena said, "what do I do when I find her?"
"When you find her, your soul must be refused. But Xena, you must make
sure not to kill her. Doing so would destroy the most important part of
"I figured that out already," said Xena.
"So how do we refuse Xena's soul?" asked Gabrielle.
"Uhh, well, that's the tricky part," said Hades.
"Surprise," said Xena. "Okay, what's the trick?"
"To refuse a soul," Hades said, "both halves of the soul must want to be
refused. Otherwise the refusion is impossible."
"WHAT?" said Gabrielle surprised by what she had heard. "Are you saying
that Xena's evil side must want to be reunited with Xena's good side?
That's never gonna happen. She has an army, and Ares behind her, and she
has dozens of villages scared to death!"
"I know it sounds impossible, but there's one thing that can help you
here Xena," said Hades.
"What's that?" asked Xena.
"Just keep in mind that you two are still part of the same whole. You
are part of her and she is part of you."
"Wait a minute," said Xena, "are you saying that she is still like me,
she has some good left in her?"
Hades simply raised one eyebrow towards Xena and then vanished.
"Come on, Gabrielle. We've got some answers and we need to make for lost
To be continued...........
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