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Heritage-Chapters 6 & 7

Angeleeta Sosnowski


Xena, Gabrielle, their pals are all property of MCA/UNIVERSAL. The events which take place in this bit of fan fiction have not been officially endorsed and are intended for the enjoyment of those who chose to read on. No disrespect or copy right infringement intended.

HOWEVER, Wolf, Merlina, Erik and their pals are all property of Shapoopie Inc. Any use of these characters without my consent is way wrong, so please don't. (A special thanks to my number one gal Laura the Krusty Biscuit who helped edit this tale.)


A-Watch out for the subtext. If a same sex relationship freaks you out or is illegal where you are, please don't continue.

B-Things aren't always pretty in this story. Some of the action scenes are quite violent and graphic in nature, so if you're squeamish, watch out. Also, there are quite a few naughty words in this tale, the one's banned by the FCC, so be warned.

C-THIS STORY TAKES PLACE sometime during the what would be the fifth or six season of Xena. I'm made some decisions about what has happened to some of the characters based on third season shows and rumors. I started this story before "Maternal Instincts", "Armageddon Now", and the season finale aired. Some alterations have been made to accommodate those episodes and subsequent shows, but Dionne and I aren't buddies, so some things could turn out wrong. Oops!

D-There is a touch of Star Trek in this story which requires a little explanation. The universe is laid out in this pattern for my story: there are many dimensions (called realms) which exist next to each other. Between each dimension/realm exists an area of black space called the "void". Within each of these "realms" there is a land for the gods, mortals, and the dead. It is possible to travel between realms as well as between the lands. If I tell you any more, I'll give away too much of the story. If you're confused, drop me a line and I'll try to explain things a little more. Bachlorette (lyrics by sjon) copyright 1997 Bjork Overseas Ltd. Alarm Call (lyrics by bjork) copyright 1997 Bjork Overseas Ltd. Army of Me (lyrics by bjork) copyright 1995 Me Company


Chapter Six

"leave me now-return tonight, the tide will show you the way,"
"forget my name and go astray"

Two weeks of healing and sparring later, a small band of determined heroes set out along the path that would lead them to the portal to Dahok's realm. The leader, Xena took the point position, looking for signs of trouble. Next to her was Gabrielle, Xena's friend and partner. Behind them came the strikingly handsome brother and sister pair of Merlina and Erik. Merlina's love and longtime champion against Dahok, Wolf, guarded their rear. The last of their party, Gunther, had gone ahead to scout the land and look for any signs of Dahok's' men.

"Yet another bright and cheery day in the land of the immortals," Wolf said sarcastically from the back of the line.

"You know what that means," Gabrielle added knowingly.

"Yeah," Xena said, "but at least we know trouble is coming. It won't spoil our day."

"If only you knew how much," Wolf muttered to herself.

The group continued on in silence. Every now and then, Gunther would signal from his position that everything was fine and the party would pause to rest. After a heated debate, Xena had decided it would be best to go on foot and leave the horses behind.

"How much longer to the portal?" Gabrielle asked Wolf and they shared a drink.

"Gunther isn't far from it now, so we should reach it by the end of today."

"Do you think Dahok has already sent men through?" the bard asked, taking another sip of water.

"No," Wolf replied taking the flask from Gabrielle, "he knows we're coming. He'll have a nice welcoming party there for us after we cross over."

"Well, what's to keep him from entering this realm once we open the door?"

"We are," Ares smug voice said from behind her.

The bard whirled around to the greatest configuration of immortals she had ever seen. Almost all of the Norse gods and many of the Greek gods were standing behind Ares who smiled.

"It's about time you got here," Wolf said warmly to Thor. He was standing next to Aries, dressed in his best battle armor. The longtime friends embraced.

"I couldn't let my best pal go to battle without the proper send of."

As the two chatted, Gabrielle moved closer to Xena and whispered, "Did you know about this?"

"Yeah," Xena replied. Continuing to sharpen her sword, "It was Ares and Thor's idea actually. The popped in the other day to run it by me. We need a rear guard incase things don't go our way."

"What a great story this will make," the bard said with excitement.

"You can never write this tale," a woman's voice said. Gabrielle looked up and was temporarily blinded by the woman's glittering gold armor. She was tall and carrier herself much like the Warrior Princess. "It will destroy the image of the gods. The Norse and Greek gods have never been allies, and can not be known as them now."

Gabrielle nodded in awe.

The woman smiled, "We of the north have had another fate foretold for us. If we win the day, we will forget what has happened to allow our true destiny to take place. It is what is necessary for the survival of man." With a curt nod to Xena and another smile to Gabrielle, she strode away and began talking to Ares.

"Who was that?" the bard asked.

"The greatest warrior maid ever to grace this world," was all Xena replied.


After the last of the gods arrived, the greatly augmented group continued towards the portal. As they drew closer, the terrain began to change. The grass was brown and black, trees were broken or burned. The sky was still blue and the sun bright, but the land was dead.

As the sun sank in the sky, the gods and heroes reached the portal. Gabrielle and Xena were surprised to find it merely a large metal door sitting in the middle of the road. The trail and the land continued past the door, keeping the same ominous look they had been traveling in during the last leg of the journey.

"So this is it," Ares said to Xena as they set up the gods camp in the surrounding hills. "It's hard for me to admit, but I'm a little jealous of you."

"Really." Xena said, unconvinced.

"I'm a god, Xena. Myself and my fellow gods should have taken care of this long ago. We all knew this was coming, but did nothing until it was too late." He pause and looked away, "I hate it when mortals have to do the work for us, to clean up our messes."

Xena stifled a laugh.

Ares looked hurt for an instant, but quickly regained his conceited air. "Well, good luck then Warrior Princess. I need you in one piece to rule my armies, okay?"

"Sure," Xena smiled affably. "But I'm saving my piece for someone else."

Ares shook his head and turned to go. Xena heard him mutter as he left, "I still don't get what you see in her."


Closer to the portal, Thor was exchanging goodbyes with the champions of the north land. He hugged Erik, slapped Gunther on the back, and kissed Merlina tenderly on the cheek, then turned to his best friend, Wolf.

"What to say," Wolf said. It was a hard moment for them. In victory, the Norse gods would forget what had happened so that they could fulfill their destiny. Thor wouldn't remember Wolf and all of the times they had shared together. Defeat meant death to mortals and eternal suffering and servitude for the gods. Either way they were going to be separated forever.

"I love you. You're the best friend I've ever had." Thor said lightly, emotion creeping into his voice.

"Words just don't have the power my friend." Wolf smiled, her eyes becoming damp. "A language has yet to be invented to say how much you mean to me."

Thor, choked with emotion, swept Wolf up in his arms for a fierce hug. "I love you like one of my own family my dearest sister. I have always cherished our time together."

"Me to, brother, me too." Wolf replied.

With one more squeeze the two separated. Thor turned quickly and headed for his position, wiping the tears from his eyes. Wolf watched him go, and with a sigh, turned to the huge metal door.

"Are you ready to face the greatest challenge man has ever known?" Wolf asked Xena.

Xena smiled.

Wolf reached under her tunic and pulled out an ordinary looking key, fit it into the giant lock and turned. With a loud click the lock turned and the door opened. All that could be seen was a hazy reddish glow. Led by Xena, Gabrielle, Gunther, Erik, Merlina, and finally Wolf entered the realm of Dahok. With a loud slam Wolf pulled the door shut, and with the click of the lock, the gods knew their fate had been sealed.

For what seemed like an eternity the group traveled in a thick mist. Unlike their realm, the sun of this place had more of a reddish/orange color, so ordinary objects, such as trees, took on a eerie look.

"It's just like on the ship," Gabrielle observed quietly.

"That's why I wanted you to stay below. Over those waters, the barrier becomes thin sometimes and Dahok can suck people into his realm." Wolf said from the back of the line.

A small breeze began to blow, sweeping the fog away. When it had finally cleared, Xena saw they were on a path in a forest, similar to any number of ones in Greece. About ten paces ahead stood a lone warrior, waiting for them.

"It's the person who saved me on the ship," Gabrielle said softly to Xena. "They saved my life."

"But almost took mine," Erik said coldly.

The lone warrior in sleek black armor casually approached the group. Covered head to toe in battle gear, the figure was very imposing and unrecognizable as friend or foe. Something's not right here, Xena thought. This person is way too familiar.

Seeing Xena's consternation, the figure laughed. It was high pitched and definitely female, and held the sarcasm only known to one person long dead.

With a swift move the female warrior removed her helmet to reveal Callisto, Xena's greatest foe.

"Well," she said with a smile, "isn't today my lucky day in hell."


"Callisto," Xena said, voice full of venom, "I should have know you'd be involved in this." The Warrior Princess drew her sword, "Shall we settle this again? Once and for all?"

"Hold on Xena," Callisto replied, making no move to defend herself. "I'm as surprised as you. I was expecting a war party, but not you as a part of it."

"Wolf," Xena turned around. Angrily she asked, "Is this another of your surprises?"

"It was the only way to get both of you here and working on the same team." Wolf's voice was calm, "You're the chosen one, so you have to come," she looked at Xena, "and Callisto is obligated by her family lineage. Her ancestor was my brother Anathar's daughter. You two are distant cousins."

Callisto began to cackle, "Oh this is too rich."

"That still doesn't explain why she's here," Gabrielle continued to press Wolf. "She's an agent of Dahok's. She's the one who helped Hope kill Solan."

"That's why it's even better she's here," Wolf walked forward. Placing herself between Xena and Callisto, she continued, "Since we are on are own, we needed help from the inside. I needed someone who I could trust, someone not directly associated with dad. Callisto was perfect--a history of bad deeds, her hatred of you, her collaboration with Hope. Dahok would never suspect that I was the one who freed her from Tarturus and sent her here."

Xena looked warily at Wolf and Callisto. "I don't like this at all. Despite what you say Wolf, Callisto can't be trusted. She's the one person who can never find redemption."

"Always full of such loving words Xena," Callisto drawled. "Look, I'm not happy about this situation either, but I'd rather work with you now than Dahok for the rest of eternity. I didn't do this to save my soul Xena, or to save mankind. I did this for myself. I want vengeance on Dahok for what his brat did to me."

"How noble," Xena with a sardonic tone.

"Either way ladies, your both here and fighting against Dahok," Wolf said. "I told you both that this wouldn't be an easy mission for many reasons. Just think of it as another challenge to overcome. After we've won everyone goes back to where they came from."

Xena and Callisto exchanged looks. Xena put away her sword and Callisto relaxed. The tension in the group increased tenfold. This is going to be bad, Gabrielle thought.

"So what's the plan," Callisto asked flatly.

"That depends on what you can tell us about Dahok's stronghold in this land and his forces," Xena replied tartly.

"About a day up this road is Dahok's main castle. Most of his legions are either in other realms or awaiting deployment to Greece and the land of the Norse gods...." Her eyes became distant as she began to recite the details of Dahok's fortress and his troops. Xena, Wolf, and the rest of the band listened attentively since this information could save their life.

"Excellent job Callisto," Wolf praised after she finished her report.

"I agree," Xena added. "You really have done your work."

Callisto smiled a thin smile, "Getting that information was no picnic, but if it helps to kill Dahok it was worth it."

Chapter Seven

"you could smell it, so you left me on my own"
"to complete the mission, now i'm leaving it all behind"

"So it's settled then," Xena said. "Two days from now we will enter Dahok's stronghold in the blackest part of the night. Callisto will be waiting at the secret entrance at the back of the castle. Wolf, Erik and Merlina will create a diversion so that Gabrielle, Gunther and I will be able to enter unnoticed. We will regroup in the main hall and kill Dahok."

"I hope this works Xena," Callisto said getting up. "If not we are all in for a world of pain." The blonde warrior replaced her helmet and sprinted down the path which led to their goal.

"It will," Xena said quietly to herself. Despite Callisto's behavior and Wolf's reassurances, the Warrior Princess still had the feeling that she had just been set up. Evil like that can never change, she thought.

"Since we have some time, why don't we set up camp for the night," Xena said calmly to the remaining warriors. "The castle is only a day's travel, so we're in no hurry. We need to conserve our strength and come up with a couple of alternate plans."

"What about Callisto? We can't just leave her...."Merlina began to protest.

Xena cut her off, "I don't care what you say. I know that devil and she can't be trusted. If she decides to turn against us, I want to be ready."

Wolf just sighed and went to get fire wood, uninterested in the debate which had begun between Xena, Merlina and Eric about Callisto and planning against her. As the northern hero left the clearing and began to gather kindling, she noticed she was not alone.

"I knew you wouldn't just trot away so easily," Wolf said flatly.

Callisto emerged from the shadows, "I know Xena. Of course she doesn't trust me. I don't blame her, but I'm not about to be caught flat footed when she tries to double cross me."

Gabrielle, who had slipped away a few moments after Wolf, stopped and hid in the shadow of a large shade tree. Up ahead were Callisto and Wolf discussing Xena and the upcoming battle. The bard crept closer for a better listen.

"Look Cally, I don't have time to coddle your ego. We've talked about this at length and we both knew what would happen. Just stick with the original plan. By the time everyone realizes what's going down it will be too late." Wolf, sensing Gabrielle, reached slowly for her chakrum. "I only hope that Xena won't hesitate. We can only buy here a couple of seconds at best."

Suddenly Wolf hurled her chakrum at Gabrielle. The bard didn't have time to react as the deadly circle whooshed past her arm, grazing it. It bounced off a tree and back into Wolf's waiting hand. Gabrielle suddenly felt tired, and sat down without wanting to. She fought for clarity as Wolf and Callisto approached. The bard knew they were talking about her, but she couldn't cut through the ringing in her ears to understand what they were saying. Moments later, she was asleep.

"Damn it!" Wolf said with frustration, "Why does this always happen to me."

"She knows," Callisto said calmly. "Can I kill her now?" she asked with delight.

"Shut up you," Wolf replied harshly. "No, you can't." Wolf kneeled down and made sure the bard was still alive. She had realized weeks ago that Xena had asked Gabrielle to tail her whenever Wolf was separated from the group. "Xena's operating in warlord mode--she doesn't trust her lieutenants at all."

"So now what? We can't just leave her here." Callisto said, kneeling down next to Wolf.

"No, we can't." Wolf smiled suddenly, "That's why you have to take her with you as a present for Dahok. This is what you'll need to tell him...."


Wolf waited as long as she could before staggering back into the camp sight. Before Callisto had left, Wolf had her inflict some minor wounds and knock her out. Wolf had to look convincing so Xena would believe the lie.

"Xena!" Wolf said breathlessly, "Xena, they've got her." Wolf collapsed suddenly to make it look more convincing. She been hurt enough for real so she could act it without a problem.

Merlina was at Wolf's side instantly, attending to her injuries. Xena came over, worry etched deep into her face. Wolf and Gabrielle had been missing for hours.

"Who's got her? Where's Gabrielle?" Xena asked harshly.

"Dahok's men," Wolf said. She sipped some water given to her by Merlina, "Dammit Xena, if you hadn't make Gabrielle tail me then they wouldn't have gotten her. It was all I could to escape myself."

"What happened?" Xena's voice was dark and full of menace.

"I was looking for wood. I slipped away while you guys were arguing about Callisto." Wolf sipped some more water, "As usual, Gabrielle was following along behind. Suddenly, a group of about ten demons appeared out of thin air and attacked. Gabrielle, instead of running to get help, leaped in to help me. Unfortunately, one of them must have recognized her. The last thing I remember before they swarmed me was two of them grabbing Gabby and vanishing. When I woke up, I was alone and Gabrielle was gone."

Xena pushed Merlina aside and grabbed Wolf by her shirt. "Don't lie to me Wolf," she raged, "I'll kill you for setting her up like that."

Three sword tips were suddenly at Xena's throat. Merlina, Erik, and Gunther were not about to let Wolf get hurt by Xena again.

"I told you before we came here Xena that Dahok was waiting for us." Wolf said, remaining calm. "He's smart Xena. He knows that with you, Gabrielle is the key. Just the thought of Dahok getting his hands on her would send you into a rage and cause you to do something rash. Don't do it Xena, stick with the plan. Callisto will make sure that she's stays unhurt until we get there."

Xena pushed Wolf down roughly and stormed off. Merlina put her sword away and kneeled down by Wolf.

"What really happened Wolf, you weren't attacked by anything."

"Just a change in strategy that's all love." Wolf smiled wickedly. "One that Dahok won't suspect at all."


"Get up brat, we're here," Callisto's harsh voice woke the bard in an instant. Gabrielle was inside Dahok's castle in the main hall. The bard stood shakily and took in her surroundings. The hall was long, maybe 200 or so paces in length and about 100 wide. Along the wall were torches, about half of which were lit, causing the room to be somewhat dim and poorly defined. The floor and walls were made of a type of stone the bard had never seen, but by the looks of it, as hard as any found in Greece. At the far end of the hall were a set of huge wooden doors, locked from this side. A long wood table, lined with benches on either side was in the center of the room.

In front of Gabrielle was an elevated platform which held a huge throne made of gold, silver and other precious stones. Next to it on either side where two smaller 'mini-thrones' which looked much more comfortable. A long table sat in front of the five chairs.

"Pretty impressive huh?" Callisto was leaning against the table in the center of the hall.

"What am I doing here? Take me back to Xena!"

"Sorry, love, can't do that," Callisto replied in an uninterested tone. "Now be a good girl and listen close because I'm only going to say this once. As you've probably already guessed we're now at my boss's house. Don't try to escape okay? As long as you stick with me you'll be safe."

"Right," Gabrielle said sarcastically.

"Look, you have to trust me. Dahok knows you are here and is coming to see you. He won't touch you until he thinks Xena can see, so you have a couple of days to think about this: Do you really think that Wolf would let me out of Tarturus to help Dahok, and set you, Xena, and most importantly, Merlina, up? Wolfy and I have a plan, but it's not what you think."

Suddenly the hall became brighter as the unlit torches suddenly flared to life. Callisto suddenly tensed, losing her normal relaxed demeanor. She got off of the table and dropped to one knee. Looking at the ground she said, "Great master, looking what I found today in the forest. I present her as a gift to you, great one."

"Ah, my dear Captain, you never fail to surprise me," a male voice said.

Gabrielle looked up to the golden throne, in which sat Dahok.

"Dahok," Gabrielle whispered.

"Yes, dearest wife, I am," the man smiled. Much to the bard's surprise, Dahok looked like any of the other gods she had seen.

"You look like another god," Gabrielle said in amazement.

"What did you expect? Some hideous scaled, horned demon?" Dahok laughed, "I only use them to scare the mortals. I think I'm rather attractive."

"I wouldn't know," Gabrielle replied coolly.

He isn't what I expected, that's for sure, the bard thought. Dahok was tall, probably about Ares height, with long brown hair, tan skin, and a lean, well toned body. His voice held a tinge of an accent not unlike those she had heard in Britannia or Gaul. Dressed in fine clothes, he looked more like a prince than the destructive force which wanted to take over her world.

"Captain, how did you come across this fine catch?" Dahok's rich voice asked.

Callisto, still on one knee, replied, "I was scouting around the door to my home realm as you had requested my lord, when I came across Xena's war party. They had set up camp some distance from the portal, so I was caught by surprise at first."

"Cut to the chase, Blondie, I don't need to hear about your shortcomings." Dahok's voice held a thinly veiled threat in it.

"Xena, in her arrogance, sent the bard with the traitor to gather wood for a fire. I easily took care of that bitch Wolf and knocked the br....I mean you're lovely bride out and brought here. I thought that perhaps once you have killed Xena, you might like to start a new line of children."

"Despite Hope's failings, she was wise in her choice of you as her champion, Callisto. Nicely done."

"Thank you lord Dahok." Callisto replied. Gabrielle could tell how hard it was for Callisto to keep control. It was clear that Dahok was not someone who was fun to work for.

"How far away is Xena?"

"About five day's travel by foot." Callisto replied, giving a false position of the band of fighters. "Shall I take a squad out and kill them?"

"No," Dahok stood. He vaulted over the table in front of his throne and landed inches away from Gabrielle. "Let her come to me," he smiled evilly.

"Excuse me, great leader," Callisto looked up from the floor. "With Xena so close, shouldn't we make preparations for battle? Wolf, Merlina and several of their clan are with her."

Callisto stood and approached Dahok and Gabrielle. Dahok stood inches away from the bard, who could feel the demon's excitement at seeing her again. Callisto stopped about a foot away from the frozen pair.

"We need to ensure victory, oh mighty one. With Xena and Wolf's head's mounted on your wall, you can take your time with your favorite bride."

Dahok turned and looked at Callisto who was wearing her wicked smile, "I know you'd want to take your time and truly enjoy the spoils of victory."

"Ah, Captain, you always are thinking ahead." Dahok smiled at Gabrielle, "That's why I keep her around, wife, she's the best." He looked again at Callisto, "I leave her in your very capable hands, Captain." With a poof, Dahok was gone.

"Thank you Callisto," Gabrielle said. She leaned heavily on the table, "I'll kill myself before I let him touch me again."

"I know how you feel," Callisto replied, a distant look in her eyes. She shook herself, "Come on, I'm taking you to my quarters, you'll be safe there. My men, the Elite Guard, will make sure no one but myself enters."

"What about Dahok?"

"Like I said, only I can enter." Callisto smiled as they headed down a small passage to the left of the throne platform. "My men are loyal. When the time comes, they will not be the ones fighting with Xena."

Gabrielle merely nodded as she was led to Callisto's room and out of harms way. Her mind occupied by the recent events involving Wolf, Callisto, and now Dahok. They have another plan, the bard thought, a plan within a plan. Xena can't know, or it won't work. Gabrielle smiled inwardly and buried her new found information deep out of Dahok's reach.



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