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GENERAL COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER: Xena, Warrior Princess, Gabrielle, Ares, Argo and all other characters who have appeared in the syndicated series Xena: Warrior Princess, together with the names, titles and backstory are the sole copyright property of MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. No copyright infringement was intended in the writing of this fan fiction.
All other characters, the story idea and the story itself are the sole property of the author (meaning Kharis and Syrinus belong to me). This story cannot be sold or used for profit in any way. Copies of this story may be made for private use only and must include all disclaimers and copyright notices.
VIOLENCE WARNING/DISCLAIMER: this story is based on the series and of course, what would Xena be but not the violent kick ass grrrl that she is! But violence has been kept to a minimum with very little actual bloodshed involved. That's for the next story. Muhahaha
SEXUAL VIOLENCE WARNING/DISLAIMER: This story insinuates a scene of sexual violence and a small amount of its aftermath. Some readers may be disturbed by this type of depiction and anyone who is sensitive to this particular issue may wish to read something other than this story. But I promise that there isn't any actual description of it, just the vague inference to it from one of the characters.
LOVE DISCLAIMER: This story depicts a loving relationship between two consenting adult women. If you are under 18 years of age or if this type of story is illegal in the state or country in which you live, please do not read it. If depictions of this nature disturb you, you may wish to read something other than this story.
If you can't stand the idea that two women can have a loving relationship then please keep your closed mind where it belongs and don't bother reading this story. 'Nuff said
This is my first attempt at XWP fanfic so please be gentile with this newbie. It is the first in the Sins of a God Series that will continue to grow with your support. Hopefully the other stories will be finished before you have to wait much longer. But, for now, enjoy what is below and remember...all comments, suggestions, and flames are welcome.
Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 | Chapter 6 | Chapter 7 | Chapter 8
And Then There was Two
The girl was bathed, wrapped in one of Gabrielle's night shifts, and attended to in a gentle yet efficient manner that was one of Xena's many skills. Resting peacefully for the first time the child was left close to the fire on the warrior's bedroll while Xena and Gabrielle went outside for some fresh air.
Standing just by the open doorway Xena looked out to the east, the crosses no longer in her line of site, contemplating the young girl by the fire. Morpheus had taken the child into a blissful sleep and would keep her safe and secure for a few more hours.
"She's much stronger then she should be," the warrior mused in a whisper.
Gabrielle looked up slightly, "What?"
Shaking her head, Xena walked a few steps towards the end of the porch, "I was just thinking about the little one in there. By the Gods, she should be dead like the rest of them but she isn't. Not only that but she's getting stronger so quickly. I've never seen anyone heal that fast before."
"Except you of course," Gabrielle bitched. The warrior's renown for shrugging off injuries that would ruin a lesser mortal's body was a continuing sore spot with the bard. What took Gabrielle weeks to recover from only took Xena a few days. Karmic balance was not right with her brooding friend when concerning all of her many special "skills". It was unnatural, yet seemed so right when associated with the warrior princess.
Xena turned her head sharply and scrutinised her bard's face, "And what's that supposed to mean?" A small grin slowly climbed on the edges of her mouth.
"Nothing," the bard quickly replied. "I was just making an observation. You heal much more quickly then anyone I've ever known yet you think of it as normal. Maybe she's just like you."
The dark warrior's face lightened as a full smile broke on her face, "I highly doubt that Gabrielle. But she is unusual to be sure. Something about her is so familiar but I just can't place where and why."
"I know what you mean. Once the blood was gone her features were familiar to me too. But I can't see how since we've never been in this area before."
"Well, we can figure it out later I guess. For now we should get some shuteye. We'll make a litter for her and take her down into the forest. Once there, at least we'll have the cover we need to stay unnoticed for some time so she can heal fully."
Gabrielle moaned at the thought of spending more time in that drab, dark place they only left just a candlemark ago, "Hades' balls Xena, do we have to go back there?" A raised eyebrow from her friend was the only response the bard received.
"I know I'm an amazon and all and the forest is an amazon's sanctuary but even this amazon gets depressed in such confined surroundings at times," the bard quickly explained.
Xena strolled to the end of the porch now facing the crosses and gestured toward the dead, "Well if you want to stay here and enjoy the scenery then be my guest."
"No, I don't think my stomach could handle one more day here. But I thought we'd find another village close by so these people can have a proper burial." Gabrielle turned and stared at the crosses and silently wept at the waste.
"That was when I thought there was no one alive," the warrior explained. "Now we have a child that needs time to heal and the more travelling she does the more likely she won't survive the trip. No, we don't have time to bury the villagers. We'll build pyres around them and send their souls on to Hades for judgement."
The young bard nodded and realised that burning was the only option, "So when do we get started?"
Cobalt eyes turned towards the bard as a shudder coursed through her body. 'Gods she was beautiful in the moon's light'. Xena lightly touched the bard on her shoulder, turning her away from the grisly sight. Wiping a stray tear away from the bard's cheek Xena pulled her friend into a hug.
"Shhh. We won't start anything, I will. You have to stay here and keep an eye on the child in case she wakes up. I can do this by myself," Xena said in a soothing voice. Lightly touching a finger to the bard's lips she continued. "And don't even think of arguing with me on this one. I can do this faster without your help then with your help. Plus, someone must be hungry by now and you know how refined my cooking skills are."
Gabrielle chuckled despite her melancholy mood; "I am a bit hungry. I'll have it ready when you're done." Lightly pushing herself away from the warrior's body the bard moved back into the building and prepared to make the day's end meal.
Xena looked towards the horizon and swore, "Caesar will pay for this! Even if I have to drag him down to Tartarus myself!" Checking inside the building for a second and seeing that the child was still within Morpheus' spell Xena walked towards the first row of crosses and began to prepare them for the fire.
The pyres burned bright, lighting up the midnight sky as the tall, dark woman began to sing the warrior's song of death. The death knell was a time-honoured ritual, firmly encased in Xena's psyche. Not of words or phrases but of sounds and emotions only those that were bloodied would understand. Many a time she presided over the burials of her army's fallen, singing the dirge to help guide them on their way to Hades. Unlike other leaders, Xena used the lament as a form of control over her remaining troops. Not one man was not willing to die the following day for her, just have her sing at his burial. Like everything she used, it was another powerful weapon. She realised early on that out of all of her skills her voice was one of her most potent arms and used it to her advantage time and time again.
Yet tonight there was no one to sway for the next day's battle, no one to coerce into capitulating to her demands, no one to control later on. Tonight she was beholden to give the villagers a final elegy for all of those she once destroyed. Tonight she was respecting those that she never respected before.
The heat emanating off the crosses slowly parched Xena's leather and heated her armour till it glowed as red as Tartarus' door yet she never moved till she was done. Satisfied that she had paid a worthy tribute, Xena turned towards the house and saw a small, dark figure leaning against the front door's frame in a trance. How the child had been able to stand let alone move towards the door was a miracle. Why Gabrielle was no where to be seen was unnerving for the alert warrior.
Silently moving away from the crosses, Xena started to walk towards the house never breaking eye contact with the child. When the warrior was twenty paces away from the girl, the child suddenly moved away from the frame and released Xena's chakram from behind her back, sending the deadly disc towards Xena's neck. Reflexes took command of her body as Xena reached forward and instantly stopped the disc from removing her head from her body. Dazed, the warrior hooked the golden disc onto its proper place and continued to walk towards the girl once again.
Seeing that her efforts were for nought, the girl quickly leapt off the porch and made a mad dash towards the back of the house and the hills beyond. Xena shook her head as she quickly picked up her pace and ran after the fleeing girl. 'How?' kept repeating through the woman's mind. It had taken the warrior princess years to master the chakram with all of its nuances of achieving a straight flight, let alone one of any complexity. It would have taken her a few days to recover from the abuse the girl had received. Yet there she was, within Xena's grasp, in perfect control of her frail body that not only almost decapitated the warrior but was able to maintain a good lead on her until Xena's longer legs finally shortened the gap.
Leaping forward, Xena flipped in the air and landed a pace in front of the child who suddenly slammed against the woman's body, crumbling to the ground. Xena quickly reached down towards the girl but recoiled when the dagger that the girl had held close to her body snaked out and ripped across the warrior's right thigh. Cursing under her breathe, Xena roughly grabbed the child's arm with one hand, twisting it back in a violent motion that sent the dagger spinning from the child's now numb hand. With her other hand, the warrior applied a pressure point to the back of the girl's skull forcing her into unconsciousness.
Ragged breaths escaped from Xena's mouth as she fought to control her desire to kill the now helpless child before her. It had taken all of Xena's control to not rip the girl's arm from her socket nor pummel her into the ground after the knife tore the woman's thigh open. 'How' was quickly replaced by 'why' as Xena slowly counted down from twenty, quenching the darkness that was fighting to come to the surface.
Slowly the tension left the warrior's shoulders as her eyes regained the deep blue that had been momentarily replaced with the ice blue of fury. Checking to make sure that the girl was no threat, Xena picked her up not so gently and marched back to the village.
Stepping on the porch, the warrior could hear a low moan from inside as her companion slowly rose up off the floor, rubbing the back of her neck where an already large bump was beginning to pound in earnest. Gabrielle looked up as Xena entered the room and placed the girl back on the table. Only then did she quickly turn towards the bard with a worried look of inquiry.
"I'm all right I think," the bard answered as she moved towards the table and its occupant.
"What happened?" the warrior asked troubled.
"I'm not sure exactly. I was bending over to stoke the fire when I heard a sound behind me and before I could even turn around, everything went black."
Xena walked around the table and motioned for the bard to turn around to check on her head. Lightly probing the tender skin, the warrior saw that there was no bleeding and turned her friend around to face her, "I don't know how she did it but our little charge here woke up and has done some amazing things in the short time she's been awake."
"Like what?" Gabrielle grimaced as her head continued to spin slightly in a nauseous way.
"Well for starters she knocked you out, grabbed my chakram and tried relieving my head from my body, then lead me on a merry chase towards the hills in the back only to slice open my thigh when I finally caught up to her," the warrior said matter-of-factly.
"What? You're kidding right?"
Xena's raised eyebrow and quick glance down to the wound on her leg was the only answer her bard received. Stepping back from her friend, Gabrielle turned towards the unconscious body on the table and marvelled at what she had just heard, "Guess you aren't kidding. But why? After we helped her."
Xena limped towards her bags and retrieved some herbs to help dull the pain for both of them, "I don't know and that isn't what is bothering me. How she did it has me confused and worried."
Light green eyes widened as the realisation finally sunk into the bard's throbbing head, "You don't think that...well...she can't be a god can she?"
Xena snorted as she prepared the healing herbal tea for herself and her bard, "Gods can't be physically hurt and she was. No, she isn't a god but some god IS protecting her. She's not normal."
Gabrielle sighed, "Xena, if I had a dinar for every time someone said that about you we'd be living in a castle right now."
An eyebrow shot up under raven-haired bangs; "I'm not one for castles thank you."
"Me neither," Gabrielle slightly chuckled. "But you're missing the point. If she isn't a god then she's like us, well, like you maybe. So that means she's normal, I guess. Right?"
Xena just shrugged and poured the medicinal tea into two mugs, "I don't know about that. I'm the way I am from years of hard work and conditioning, and a few lucky breaks I have to admit. This is just a child for Zeus' sake."
Gabrielle took the mug that was offered to her and sat down against the wall slowly sipping the pungent concoction. "Hades this stuff tastes bad. Don't we have any honey left?"
The warrior just slowly sipped her tea, her eyes clouding into a greyish blue as her mind tried to sort through the day's events. Something was up and she couldn't figure it out. Her hair had been standing on the back of her neck ever since they found the village, but not like it usually did when Ares was close by, or when she sensed that either her or Gabrielle were in immediate danger. It was almost like a string was pulling her along. One that controlled her yet allowed her to control of to a point. Almost like she was being moved in a direction that she didn't want to take yet had no choice but to take. The Gods were involved, there was no doubt in the warrior's mind, and this child was the key. It was only a matter of time when Xena would finally figure out for what purpose.
"Xena?" Gabrielle called for the third time trying to capture her brooding friend's attention.
The dark woman looked up from her mug of tea and smiled slightly to calm her anxious friend's nerves, "Sorry, Gabrielle. I was just thinking."
"What are we going to do about her?"
Xena looked in the direction of the child and shrugged, "Tie her up and take her with us. There isn't much else we can do. Obviously she's going to live or she would have never been able to do what she did."
"Are you sure tying her up is a good idea?"
"What else can we do? I'm not going to let her have a second chance at killing me now am I? Or even you for that matter."
"If she wanted to kill me she could have done it. I don't think she's really all that dangerous. Confused more then likely," The bard replied, which brought a snort from the warrior. "Imagine being tortured, hung on a cross, and expect to die only to wake up with some stranger hovering around you. Not knowing if they are going to hurt you more. Maybe kill you since you obviously didn't die when you should have."
"Gabrielle, I have gone through that. Remember?" Xena said stonily as her piercing blue eyes focussed on the bard. The vision of Caesar standing down below her as she was hanging on the cross quickly filled her eyes; 'Break her legs!' was echoing around her head.
Gabrielle quickly sucked in her breath when she realised what she had just said; "I'm sorry Xena. I forgot."
"It's all right. I know what you meant to say but I don't buy it. Even if it were true she would have had only one thought and that would have been to flee. Not grab my chakram and attack me with it. Sorry Gabrielle but she's going to be tied and will stay tied until she comes to her senses. End of story."
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