Author: Julia Donnelly and Ellie
Story Title: Bound to Please
Characters: Gabrielle & Joxer, Xena & Joxer, Xena/Gabrielle & Joxer, Xena & Dennis
Rating: NC-17
Summary: Joxer's disobedience triggers an interesting series of events. A crossover of sorts with Skinner.
This rating is for explicit m/f and m/f/f sex.

The characters (with the exception of Dennis) belong to MCA/Universal and were used without permission. The character Dennis from the film Skinner was used without permission. No copyright infringement was intended and no money was made.

You can find more stories by Julia and Ellie at The Joxerotica Archives.


Bound to Please
by Julia Donnelly and Ellie

Chapter 1 - Can He Really Do That? by Julia Donnelly

The day was turning into a long one. First Xena had insisted on going off on her own on some errand or other. She said it was a secret, but Gabrielle felt more like it was just an excuse to get her out of the way. It was so annoying! Xena was treating her like she was...Joxer.

Gabrielle tried to shut out the sound of the loud and off-key singing that had been haunting her, for hours it seemed. By the sun's position she knew she could have only run into Joxer an hour or so ago, but it seemed like forever. What she really wanted to do was stop walking, find a nice shady spot to sit down, and start writing.

It had been too long since she'd been doing any writing, and now might be the perfect time, with Xena gone. She'd been looking forward to that solitude, in a way, for the opportunity to write in peace, but then a certain bumbling sidekick had shown up and insisted on accompanying her.

"I've got an idea," she said loudly, hoping to distract Joxer from singing. It worked.

"Okay. What's your idea?" Joxer stopped walking and waited patiently for her to speak.

"I'm getting tired. Why don't we sit down for a while and rest? You know," she added, as a brilliant idea came to her, "you might want to take a nap for a while. You look awfully tired."

"I do?" The would-be warrior frowned. He didn't feel all that tired.

"Yes. And I wouldn't want you to tire yourself out on my account. If someone were to come along and attack us, you wouldn't be able to defend us if you were tired and, you know, not at your sharpest."

"That's true," Joxer mused, rubbing his chin. "We can't have that."

"I think there's a nice clearing a little ways behind us. Let's go back there and rest."

"Okay." Joxer shrugged and followed the bard as she retraced their steps.

The clearing was nice and shady, and far enough off the beaten track that they wouldn't likely be stumbled upon by anyone else. The perfect spot to sit underneath a tree and write, uninterrupted. If she could ignore Joxer's snoring, that is.

Joxer took off his helmet and tried to make himself comfortable, but his armor was getting in the way. When he finally freed himself from that encumbrance, he felt better, but he still wasn't very sleepy.

Gabrielle was sitting a little ways away, writing again. He'd have liked to just sit and talk to her, but she was obviously busy. Joxer looked around, but didn't see anything much to distract him from his thoughts. As much as he wanted to hope someday Gabby would really notice him, as a man, and a warrior, she seemed to think he was nothing more than a pest. He had to find a way to change her mind, and show her how much he loved her. He would do anything for her, and he hoped she already knew that.

He started singing again, to keep his thoughts on something else other than his beauteous bard. Although he kept his voice low, it apparently was disturbing her.

"Joxer! Can't you see I'm writing?"

"Oh, sorry." He stopped singing, but after a minute he started moving restlessly. He wanted to get back on the road, so they could reach the next town by nightfall. He didn't particularly enjoy sleeping in the woods, not if he could find at least a barn somewhere.

"Can't you sit still? You're distracting me," Gabrielle complained.

"Sorrrr-eee," Joxer said in an aggrieved tone.

Gabrielle sighed. She knew she'd have to do something to keep from strangling him. And she really didn't want to do that. As loath as she was to admit it, in addition to being a pretty nice guy most of the time, Jox was kind of cute, when he wasn't wearing that silly helmet. In fact, at times he could be outright sexy.

No, that wasn't a good place for her thoughts to go. Especially since they were alone.

Inspiration struck her.

"I'll tell you what, Joxer. If you can keep still and stay quiet for half an hour, we'll take a break and have something to eat, then we'll get back on the road."

"What if I can't--of course I can," he amended, "but what if I can't?"

Gabrielle smiled evilly. "Then I'll have to tie you up to keep you still, and gag you to keep you quiet."

"Oh." A light came into Joxer's eyes that Gabrielle had rarely seen before. "In that case I'll be very quiet and still, I promise."

"Good." Gabrielle went back to her scroll, convinced she'd have peace for at least half an hour.

Joxer's brain was racing with a million thoughts. Could he really do it? Could he sit still and not move, and not say a word, for half an hour? Sure he could. But on the other hand, did he want to? Having Gabby tie him up and gag him had a certain appeal to it. At least she'd have to touch him to do it... But any warrior should have the self-discipline to do something as simple as she had requested. If he were any kind of warrior, it would be easy to just sit there and do nothing, not twitch a muscle, not say a word, just sit there as silent as the stone Gabby was sitting on...lucky stone. Joxer mentally slapped himself, and just in time managed to avoid shaking his head. He'd have to rein in his thoughts or he'd really be in trouble.

Well, maybe not. Surely Gabrielle couldn't tie a knot that he couldn't get out of. And she was probably just kidding, anyway. Maybe it was all just a trick, to see if she could talk him into doing nothing, being bored out of his mind, while she amused herself at his expense. He didn't want to think Gabrielle was capable of such a thing, but he knew better.

On the other hand, maybe she was just waiting for him to slip up, so she could laugh at him and tell Xena how little self-discipline he had. That wouldn't be good. He'd just sit there quietly and wait. He squinted up at the sun, trying to determine how much time had gone by. It felt like it had to have been at least a half an hour, but it was probably only 10 minutes or so. Well, he could stay where he was for that long, no problem. He'd show her. She wouldn't have a chance to laugh at him, to make him look like a fool.

Unless she was trying to make him look like a fool who would do anything she asked, just because she asked. Well, it was true, but she didn't need to know that. No sense giving her that little bit of information. She had enough ammunition against him as it was. He wasn't about to let her get the better of him with this trick to make him look silly. No, he was going to show her. He would just stand up and...

He stared hard at Gabby's little green top. What on earth was she writing? Whatever it was, it was making her skin flushed, and she was either really cold, or...really excited. Was she writing something erotic? Maybe she'd let him read it when she was done. Better yet, maybe she'd read it aloud to him, while he rested his head in her lap and she played with his hair, running her fingers through it...

Joxer realized he didn't dare get up. He had kept himself very still, except for one treacherous part of his body that ignored his silent commands to lie down and rest. No, if he stood up now, he'd embarrass himself for sure.

Oh, great, now she was looking right at him, and frowning. What was the problem now? Was he thinking too loud?

"Joxer," she called out, "I think you moved."

"Did not," he answered automatically.

Gabrielle smiled that evil smile again. "Maybe not, but you just spoke. And it's only been 15 minutes."

"What? But I was just answering a question! And it's been at least an hourrrrr," Joxer mumbled as Gabrielle put her hand over his mouth. Since he was already in trouble, he figured he might as well get in some more. He opened his lips as much as he could and licked the palm of her hand.

"Ewww! Joxer, what are you doing?" Gabrielle took her hand away and wiped it on her skirt.

His planned distraction hadn't worked quite the way he'd hoped. Now she looked really annoyed.

"Joxer, stay right there."

Just to annoy her, he started to sprawl out more comfortably on the ground, but then he realized it only showed his erection more prominently. Probably not a good idea. He tried to sit up with his legs crossed and his arms over his thighs, to hide the telltale bulge.

Gabrielle came back with some pieces of rope. He wondered why she'd been carrying it with her, but it didn't seem like a good time to ask any questions.

"Just stay like that," Gabrielle said in a commanding voice.

She looped one piece of rope around his ankles, unintentionally giving him a good view straight down her top as he did so. Joxer gulped and tried to look away, but couldn't. Next she positioned his hands so they were under his knees. She tied them together, making it impossible for him to stand up or move his legs more than a few inches. So far she hadn't seemed to notice anything unusual, though it was more visible than ever, straining against the fabric of his pants.

Gabrielle looked at him critically, then went back to her bag.

"Now wait just a minute, Gabby. This has gone far enough. A joke's a joke," he protested.

"We had a deal," she reminded him. "You didn't hold up your part of it."

She came back with something black in her hands. When she held it up in front of him, his eyes widened. "These are Xena's," she explained. "They're a little bit bigger than mine." Joxer didn't have much time to wonder why she had a pair of Xena's unmentionables in her pack, before she stuffed them in his mouth.

"They're clean," she said hastily, as if to reassure him.

Xena would kill him. He knew it. As soon as she returned, she'd put him out of his misery with a quick thrust of her sword. If he didn't die of embarrassment first, of course. He hoped he didn't get a nosebleed...that would really piss Xena off.

Gabrielle patted him on the head, ruffling his hair. "Good boy. Now stay there until I'm ready to untie you."

He really didn't have much choice in the matter, so he stayed. Quietly. He tried to distract himself by watching her as she wrote, but it wasn't helping. Now she was tossing her hair back from her shoulders. Now she was biting her bottom lip in an adorable way that made him want to do the same thing. Now she was stretching her arms, which did interesting things to her very tight little green top. Gods. How could the woman be such a tease without even trying? Joxer had a feeling it was going to be a long afternoon.

Chapter 2 - Ants In Pants by Ellie

Many amazing things had happened to Joxer in his short life: He'd met several gods, helped defeat countless evil-doers, seen more of the world than most people ever dreamed of, but if someone had told him he'd be sitting under a tree with Xena's unmentionables stuffed in his mouth he'd have laughed himself silly. He supposed that, had he really wanted to, he could've gotten them out of his mouth. Even with his hands tied the make-shift gag wouldn't have been impossible to expel. Of course, the real question was, did he want to? At the moment he hadn't come to a definitive answer on that one.

For one thing...well, they were Xena's underwear, and for another, Gabrielle had put them there. Still, he missed being able to talk, or sing, particularly the latter. Singing always made the time pass so much more quickly, and he truly never got tired of coming up with new lyrics for his theme song. If only he could come up with a word to rhyme with "panties" this particular experience could be immortalized forever.

He sat pondering this for several seconds. There had to be some word. Realistically speaking it was much easier to rhyme than 'Aphrodite' after all. It wasn't coming to him. Then it occurred to him that he had a much easier time rhyming things when he could sing them aloud. The gag made that impossible, but he discovered to his delight that while he couldn't sing he could still hum.

Gabrielle finished a sentence, and re-read it for grammar and spelling. Oddly enough, she found she'd been singing the line in her head rather than hearing it in her usual mental "voice." What was even stranger was that she was singing it to the tune of "Joxer the Mighty." Glancing up she realized why that was.

"Cut it out, Joxer!"

His dark eyes met hers and he paused...for a few seconds. When he started once more it was with even more volume and gusto.

"You're really asking for it," she growled, pointing her quill at him in a rather threatening manner.

He stopped quite suddenly with a strangely high-pitched, off-key note. Eyes widening he began to wiggle, then squirm. Making desperate noises behind the gag, he did his best to scoot towards her. She was on her feet in a second, staff in hand and on the look-out for what she presumed were ruffians Joxer was attempting to warn her about. When she saw nothing, she turned her attention back to the wildly gyrating man whimpering near her feet.

A closer look at him revealed the cause of his distress.

"Ants!" Leaning down she brushed the ones she could see off his pants and bare arms. "Oh gods, Joxer, I didn't know you were sitting on an anthill!"

He continued to struggle pathetically until she removed the gag. "What?"

"I said they're in my pants! Do something!"

"Like what?"

"Let me go!"

She straightened and asked, "How do I know this isn't just some trick to get you out of the bet?"

"Gabby, they're biting me, c'mon!" he squawked rather indignantly.

"Unh-uh, I don't trust you...All right, roll over on your side."


"Come on, over on your side." She gave the off-balance man a slight push and he tumbled easily over. "Right, this oughtta do it." With that she started smacking him soundly with the flat of her hand.

"Ow! Gab ow! Gabrielle, wha--Cut it out! What are you doing?"

"Killing ants," she returned with a feral smile. "Now, just hold still and I'll get the little buggers!"

He yelped with each smack, while another part of his brain idly mentioned this would actually be a lot of fun...without the ants. Her strong hands moved over his backside with alarming thoroughness, then down each of his thighs. The combination of sensations was making a certain portion of his anatomy even more painfully erect.

"Okay, let's turn you over."

Before he could protest, Gabby flipped him onto his other side and proceeded to perform the exact same process. Each smack left a lingering stinging warmth that now covered him from waist to knees. He was willing to bet his backside was practically glowing red by this point. Then Gabrielle said the unthinkable.

"Right, now let's get the front."

He nearly swallowed his own tongue.

"N--no, that's not necessary, really, I think you got them all!" Of course, that was a complete lie. Even now he could feel the bugs marching in formation over his joy department.

"Oh, don't be such a baby...I'll be gentle..."

The way she said that made Joxer groan involuntarily. This was not going to be pleasant. Starting at the tops of his thighs, she covered them in quick, sharp little hits. Meanwhile, Joxer did his best to scoot away from her before she reached several inevitable conclusions. She glared at him and growled, "Sit still, I'm going as fast as I can."

"That's what I'm afraid of!"

She grinned and planted one of her legs behind his back, making his escape impossible. "You're not going anywhere, now sit still and take it like a man."

"Ow, Gabby, c'mon, have a yeow! heart, I'd kinda like to have yeesh! kids some day!" He bent over further, making it nearly impossible for her to reach her target.

Hands planted firmly on hips she muttered, "Do you want to sit there with ants in your pants?" He shook his head miserably but didn't straighten. Blowing her bangs up out of her eyes she had a sudden inspiration. Reaching over she poked him in his exposed side. He shot up with a yelp.

"Ah ha!" she crowed. "You're ticklish!"

It was all over as far as Joxer was concerned, he was totally at her mercy. Every movement left him open to some form of torment; either stinging slaps or tickling fingers.

"Gabby! Ah! Ha-ha, Gabby, please! Ow! Stttttoooopppp!" Between what her hands were doing to his sides and thighs, and the feel of her breasts and hair brushing against him with increasing frequency he was nearly insane with need. His cock felt as if it were about to burst completely out of his pants.

That was when her hand brushed across it and everything came to an abrupt halt.

She looked at him with a mixture of shock and disgust. Squirming under that gaze he ground out, "Jeez, Gabrielle, I'm only human."

Blinking several times, she whispered, "Oh." Then her eyebrows came together. "Men! That's all you ever think about, isn't it?" She brushed her hands quickly against her skirt as if hoping to wash away all memory of his arousal.

"Oh, right, like women never think about...that..." he returned, keeping his eyes on the ground.

"Not all the time we don't!" Belatedly remembering the rather erotic fiction she'd just been jotting down she blushed hotly. "All right, maybe I was being a little unfair. Sorry. You okay?"

"Well, considering I've got a couple dozen ant corpses down my trousers...I'm good."

Their eyes met and they both began to chuckle.

"Tell you what, let me finish up the passage I'm writing, then we'll get underway. Think you can sit still long enough?"

He shrugged. "I guess I can try...but it won't be easy."

"Just a few more minutes, I promise." Moving back over to the rock she'd been sitting on, she grabbed her scroll, dipped the quill in some ink, and began writing once more.

She spread her legs a bit to give herself a better writing surface. At the same moment Joxer, in his new position mere inches from her, discovered the most amazing thing. He could now see right up her skirt. He was pretty sure he felt his heart stop.

Chapter 3 - Second Verse, Same As The First by Julia Donnelly

Oh, bliss. Joxer was sure Gabby had no idea what a nice view he had of her finer assets. It was clear she was just as turned on as he was; it was just easier to hide. Unless one had a view from this angle. Her white panties did little to hide her arousal. Maybe Xena had a reason to prefer black, aside from the whole fashion statement thing.

He wondered if he could possibly move just a little closer, without her noticing. Hm. She seemed very engrossed in her scroll, feverishly writing as fast as she could. From the look of concentration on her face it seemed like a good time to make his move.

He managed to wriggle just a little closer, and she didn't stop him. There, now he was close enough to not only get a good view, but almost close enough to touch her nearer foot. If he leaned forward just a bit... Maybe he could do something he'd only dreamed of doing. If there were a way to get her panties off without her noticing it...

The Muses stepped in, saving him from a fate worse than death. Now he had it. If only he could remember it long enough so he could sing it. Once he'd sung a verse a couple of times it tended to stay. He wondered if he dare sing this one in front of Gabby?

"I'm Joxer the Mighty,
Love toy of Aphrodite!
She's cast me in another spell
This one without a bell
I'm tied up under a tree
Waiting for my Ga-abby
With Xena's panties in my mouth
And anties trav'ling way down south
I'm Joxer, I'm Joxer the tied-y!"

"Be quiet, Joxer! Do you want the gag to go back in?"

He hadn't meant to sing it aloud, but as often happened, his tongue and brain had parted company some ways back, and his privates were siding with his mouth. Even as he realized this, his thoughts betrayed him again.

"Can we use yours instead of Xena's? The ones you're wearing, I mean, since they must be getting pretty uncomfortable and ow!"

With a horrified shriek, she started to kick him. He was glad she'd taken her sandals off. He managed to avoid a kick to the shoulder, but twisted his head around enough to kiss her foot as it swept past.

Gabby paused, foot in mid-air. She moved it closer to him again, and he kissed it, then ran his tongue across the tips of her toes.

"Oooohhhh!" Gabby squealed, her toes flexing in response. "Do that again!" she said in a commanding tone.

Joxer liked that tone. It sounded almost like Xena. He quickly obliged her.

"Are you hungry, Jox?"

He couldn't believe it. She actually was putting the scroll aside to talk to him.

"Yeah," he admitted.

"What are you hungry for?"

At another time he might have actually answered, "An apple, or some bread," but he was pretty sure her mind was in about the same place as his at the moment. Aha! Yet another verse came to him. He belted it out, loudly and proudly.

"I'm Joxer the Mighty,
Don't take me lightly
When you want a masochist
Put me fi-irst on your list
And if you have a need to be kissed
I'm one you don't want to have missed
I'll keep you pleasured through the night
You only have to treat me right
If you want to be fulfilled
And don't want to just be drilled
Joxer's the man to see
I'm Joxer, Joxer the Mighty!"

Gabrielle sat quietly listening, then asked, "You didn't answer the question, did you?"

He thought a moment. "Uh, no, not exactly."

"Well, until you're able to ask directly for what you want, I guess you'll just have to starve, won't you?"

To drive her point home, Gabby took something from her bag. It was a red, ripe pomegranate. She ate it slowly, savoring every bite. Even when she paused to spit out the seeds, somehow she made it look sexy. The way she lapped up the juice that dribbled down her wrist, the way she bit into the warm, ripe fruit, the way she seemed to savor every bite, it was all driving him crazy. And not just because he really loved pomegranates.

When she was through with the fruit, and had licked her fingers and hands clean, she asked him again, "So, Jox, what are you hungry for?"

Now he knew she'd known he would look. She'd planned it that way. Damn, but the woman was clever!

The question was, did he want to give her what he knew she wanted? Did she want him to give her what she must know he wanted? Or was this all just another part of a devious plan to torture him and drive him crazy?

Only time would tell.

Chapter 4 - A Rolling Joxer Gathers No Moss by Ellie

Joxer didn't stop to ponder any of life's many decisions often. All right, so maybe he never stopped to ponder a decision, usually he just made it or had it made for him and then tried to make the best of the situation. But this time he was determined to think before he spoke.

He could tell Gabrielle that the only thing he was interested in eating at the moment was her, or he could try to be coy and make some sort of subtle reference to it. Part of his brain guffawed at the latter idea and he wilted a little. Ok, so subtle was probably out of the question. He could pretend he wasn't interested in her, play hard to get...but she already knew he was interested so that didn't seem like it would accomplish much.

Looking up at his tormentress he managed to ask almost lightly, "Um, what've you got?"

Her lips twitched with the first hints of a smile. "Let's see, huh?" Rummaging through her bag she came up with a handful of figs first. Grinning, she held one particularly ripe one up for his inspection. "I just love figs, don't you?"

Joxer bobbed his head in agreement and licked his lips.

The bard ran her lips over the fruit, then darted her little pink tongue out to lick it seductively. She then did something that, well frankly, he'd never even had the guts to ask one of Meg's gals to do. Gabrielle wedged the moist fig between her breasts and leaned forward. "Want it?"

"Yes please," he squeaked.

Her smile turned just the slightest bit dangerous. "Then come get it."

He blinked once, his mind having a difficult time processing this new command. "Um...but I'm all t-tied up..."

"So you are," she cooed, remaining just out of reach. "Guess you'll just have to be...inventive, hmm?"

Frowning, Joxer attempted to scoot closer to her. Of course his posterior reminded him in no uncertain terms that it'd had quite enough abuse for one day, thank you very much. Still, if it was a toss up between an even sorer bottom and burying his face in Gabby's chest, well, there really wasn't much of a contest was there?

Anticipating his move, she backed up and giggled at his startled expression. "Hey!" he cried. "That's not fair, how'm I supposed to catch you?"

"Move faster."

"'Move faster', she says," he grumbled under his breath. Taking a deep breath, Joxer sent out a silent prayer to Cupid and Aphrodite to weaken the ropes that bound him just a little. A tug revealed that the gods hadn't gotten around to his latest request quite yet. With his luck they were probably standing there watching the whole thing and laughing their divine butts off. He stopped to consider for a moment the likelihood that gods actually had butts, at least the kind that most mortals had; then, shaking his head, got back on track.

The warrior's eyes narrowed as Gabrielle continued to giggle, and knelt just out of reach. There was no way in Tartarus he was going to be able to scoot around in his current state fast enough to catch her. So, what could he possibly do? Then it hit him like a ton of dinars. Right. He had a plan.

Feinting to the left he watched as Gabby bolted for the right and grinned. Then he did something that he, Joxer the Mighty, was a master of. He fell. It wasn't just any fall, though; he used his already tentative relationship with gravity to propel him, boulder like, straight at the startled bard. She hadn't seen that coming. Gabrielle pulled up short, but the bound warrior had enough momentum to plow right into her. She went down on her back with a resounding, "Ooof!"

Before she could shift his weight off of her, he dipped his head and very carefully removed the fig. Not, of course, without a brief but heady dip into her cleavage. Using his lips to work it into his mouth he leered down at her. "Yummy."

Chapter 5 - Gabby Makes A Discovery Julia Donnelly

Gabrielle was amazed at how much she was enjoying all this. With Joxer, of all people! It wasn't just tormenting him that was fun, or seeing the glazed look of lust in his eyes. She was enjoying contemplating what might happen if she decided to take things a little bit further.

She was even enjoying having him lie on top of her as he contentedly chewed and swallowed the fig. The fig he'd retrieved from between her breasts. She was now feeling a bit sticky there, and didn't like the feeling.

"Joxer," she purred, reaching out a hand to stroke his soft hair.

"Yes, Gabby?" he replied eagerly. When she frowned he amended it. "Gabrielle."

The way he said it, rolling the word off his tongue, made it sound downright sensual. She mentally slapped herself. What was happening? This was Joxer! Were the gods playing tricks on her now?

"I'm all sticky from where the fig...jumped of its own accord."


"Would you mind, uh, doing something about that?"

Joxer raised one eloquent eyebrow. He knew exactly what she meant, but two could play at these games.

"I might be able to do that. If you'll do something about getting rid of these ant corpses. I'm feeling worse than sticky myself."

"How am I supposed to do that?" she whined.

"Let me go and I'll take a bath in that pool over there, and wash my clothes."

Hm, that had distinct possibilities, Gabrielle thought.

"First do something about me."

"Gladly." Joxer grinned in anticipation at the thought of burying his face between her breasts again, inhaling deeply, and licking away any remaining traces of fig. He bent his head down and nuzzled that tempting spot.

The first touch of his tongue on her body sent a shiver through Gabrielle. When he settled down to the serious business of tonguing the valley between her breasts, she sighed and held his head in place.

Joxer took advantage of this impossible-to-believe opportunity and ever so slowly let his tongue trail over to one side, to lick delicately at the underside of one perfect breast. He felt Gabby writhe under him and heard a distinct moan of approval. Then he repeated his action, with more encouragement from Gabby.

Closing her eyes, Gabrielle let him play, enjoying the marvelous sensation of his tongue on her sun-warmed flesh. Ooohhhh, now he was going over to the other side, teasing the other breast. She sighed in contentment, thinking she could get to like this. On the other hand, she didn't want him to think he could just do what he wanted with her, either. No, that would never do. But he felt so good on top of her. She finally realized that what was resting between her legs, pressing against her in such a delightful way, was not Joxer's leg. No, she could see his knees, one on either side of her. Nope, that was definitely not a leg.

"Ack! Get off me!" She unceremoniously shoved Joxer off her and lay panting on the grass before trying to get to her feet. No, this definitely wouldn't do.

"I think you're right, a bath would be in order. Get rid of all those ants." She hoped the water would be really, really cold.

Joxer was disappointed, but not surprised. He'd known it was too good to be true. Still, it had been fun, hoping she wouldn't notice his erection and where it was touching her through their layers of clothing.

He shook his head and tried to concentrate on what Gabby was saying.

"...untie you so you can get cleaned up, and wash your clothes. I'll just finish writing this while you're doing that."

Joxer nodded agreeably.

"But when you're done, come back here while your clothes are drying."

The pool of water was only a short distance away, and there wasn't near enough shrubbery around it for Joxer's liking, but so be it. He waited patiently while Gabrielle untied the ropes and freed him. He was halfway to the pool when he realized if he came back to her while his clothes were drying, he'd be naked. This could be either a really good thing, or a really bad thing, depending on her mood at the time, but after all, she was the one who suggested it. No, ordered it, in fact. An evil grin spread across his face as he thought about the possibilities.

Just in case she was watching, he stripped as sensually as he could, managing not to trip himself up in his pants and underwear. He tested the water with one foot and found it to be a little too cold. Still, it was the only water nearby, so he didn't have much choice if he wanted to get clean. He shrugged and stepped into the water.

Gabrielle was sitting on the rock again, trying to compose herself and her thoughts so she could finish her story. She was distracted by the sight of Joxer splashing around in the pool. He looked like he was having fun.

She sighed, and returned to her writing.

He kissed her with a passion he'd never felt for anyone else. She felt like the most loved woman in the world. His kisses roamed lower, enthusiastically exploring her feminine charms. When he finally reached that secret place, the center of her womanhood, he tasted her sweetness with a delicate touch of his tongue. She screamed in ecstasy and threw her legs across his mighty shoulders.

His mighty shoulders? No, I don't think so!

The handsome warrior took his fierce but loving pleasure with the willing wench, his long, lean body writhing atop hers, his alabaster skin shining in the sun.

Ooh! What's wrong with me? I don't want him! Do I?

To distract herself, Gabrielle looked away from her parchment and saw a very naked Joxer frolicking in the water. The white flashes of his skin as he dove into the water, then came back up for air, were intriguing in an oddly erotic way.

Maybe she should take a cold bath when he was done. Yes, that should do it.

As Joxer came out of the water, she couldn't help but notice that the cold water hadn't done much to cool his ardor. She looked away as he picked up his clothes and began washing them. Why was he so comfortable without any clothes on? She would have at least tried to hide behind some shrubbery, but Joxer didn't care that anyone could see him. He was almost flaunting his body. That was it! He was deliberately teasing her. Yet, oddly enough, he didn't seem to know or care she was looking at him. He was ignoring her, in fact, as if washing out his own unmentionables was more fascinating than looking at her.

She was determined to give him something to think about when he came back to her. Maybe binding his hands and feet again would make him think twice about ignoring her. Without his clothes in the way, this time. Yeah, that would serve him right. She would, however, make sure he wasn't sitting on an anthill this time.

A smile slowly emerged as she thought of an even better punishment.

Joxer finished washing his clothes, laying them out to dry on a couple of large rocks. He walked towards her, his manhood bobbing between his legs as if it had a life of its own. Gabrielle stared at it in fascination. By the gods, he was huge! She unconsciously licked her lips.

Since he hadn't been picking up on her earlier hints, she might have to make her wishes known a bit more clearly. There was something she'd always wanted to try, that Perdicas hadn't had time to do with her. In fact, there were a couple of things...if Jox were willing, that is. Or even if he wasn't.

"Stay where you are, Joxer. Hold your arms out, like this." She demonstrated for him, and Joxer mimicked her, holding his arms out straight in front of him, then crossing his wrists.

Gabrielle tied his wrists, surprised that he didn't protest. He didn't seem too surprised, either. She stared into his eyes, and thought she saw lust, and something that looked suspiciously like amusement.

Fine. She'd see how funny he thought it when he had his feet tied, too. But first...

Gabrielle smiled seductively and slowly unlaced her BGSB. Joxer's eyes widened and he gulped, suddenly looking just a mite fearful. Bit by bit she loosened her top, until she was easily able to remove it, revealing the perfect breasts Joxer had been staring at for a good part of the day. Then she unfastened her skirt and stepped out of that, only to spread it on the ground for Joxer to sit on.

The warrior-wanna-be looked dazed and a little afraid, as he sat on the fabric that had so recently touched his beloved.

"Get comfy, Jox. I think you're gonna be staying there a while."

Joxer tried to settle as well as he could, crossing his legs for more stability before she tied them together at the ankles.

"Now, I think you said something earlier about wanting to use my underwear as a gag. Do you still want to do that?"

Joxer nodded before he'd had time to consult his brain.

"Or," she continued maliciously, "would you like something a little more nutritious to sustain you?"

Joxer forgot to breathe for a moment as he contemplated what she might be offering him. He stared at her in fascination as she moved closer to him, clad only in rather damp underwear, and proceeded to slowly peel them away from her body. She held them in one hand, an inch or so from his nose.

"You want these? Or this?" she asked, stepping even closer, almost straddling his shoulders.

Despite appearances, Joxer was no fool. He dove into the feast before him as though he were starving (which indeed he was). He kissed and licked and lapped and nibbled until she trembled under his loving laving. Gabrielle moved her legs further apart, trying to keep her balance without asphyxiating her oh-so-willing slave.

Joxer, for his part, was thinking perhaps he had died and gone to the Elysian Fields at last. Surely there could be no more paradisial place to spend his life than between his beloved Gabby's legs? He wondered just what he'd done right to merit this type of 'punishment.'

Gabrielle screamed aloud in pleasure. Never had she felt anything so wondrous. Maybe she should keep Jox around after all, let him follow them around like a large puppy who hadn't grown into his feet yet. If he could do this for her every now and then, he would more than earn his keep. She might even share him with Xena, if that's what it would take to convince the warrior princess that Joxer did, indeed, have his uses.

Gabrielle ceased rational thought as his tongue made its way inside her, filling her just enough to make her yearn for something bigger, longer, harder...

Chapter Six - I'll Just Have A Nibble... By Ellie

On second thought, maybe she wouldn't share him with Xena. His ministrations were making her insides do lovely little flip-flops, unfortunately they were also having an effect on her balance. Barely aware of the fact that her legs were beginning to wobble, Gabrielle thrust her sex even further towards his eager mouth.

As busy as he was at present, the side to side motion of his delectable meal was beginning to make him a little sea sick. Just when he got a good position she'd drift over to the right sending his mouth into her thigh. Still, he was up to the challenge, and dove back in with enthusiasm. If only he could free his hands he'd steady those swaying hips and bury his face in her moist curls 'til she was screaming for mercy.

Allowing himself a brief sigh as she once more eluded him, he wondered if she was going to make him chase her around all day. Just as he'd begun to give up on his little bard, she used those strong, calloused hands of her to firmly place his head right back on target. And this time she held it there. 'That's more like it,' he thought, returning to work with relish.

He'd found just the right spot, the clever boy, to make Gabrielle's breath catch in her throat. Eyes tightly shut, her grip on his head increased. "Oh yeah...oh don't you move, Joxer...don't you dare move!" The pressure was building; she could feel herself climbing up towards an orgasm. "More! Oh gods, more!"

Zeus himself couldn't have torn Joxer away from his beloved at that moment. As far as he was concerned he had finally reached the ultimate moment in his existence. If he could just send her over...

Something in her body snapped, and Gabrielle screamed with the release of it. Giddy and lightheaded with pleasure and relief, the bard was totally unaware that her knees had buckled. Blinking and trying desperately to shake off the lingering dizziness and tingling in her limbs, she gazed down to find herself perched on Joxer's chest. He was attempting to articulate something without much success. "Huh?"

He looked briefly annoyed then tried again. "Breathe..." he wheezed, "Can't breathe..."

"Oh...OH!" She dove to the side, rather clumsily dismounting him. Unfortunately she miscalculated her own control over her limbs, and the distance she would need to leap and ended up kicking him in the face. Hand over her mouth she mumbled, "I'm so sorry!"

Joxer was attempting to suck a lungful of air into his abused body. He held up his bound hands to indicate that he'd respond in a second. Gabby just sat there, green eyes wide and repentant while he reintroduced his brain to oxygen. Finally his lungs stopped feeling like they had just been toasted by one of Callisto's fireballs. This time when Gabrielle asked, "Are you ok?" he was able to answer, "Yeah..yeah..."

"I really didn't mean to...Oh that's gonna' bruise," she moaned, fingering his right cheek delicately.

"That's ok," he attempted a lopsided grin, then winced. "Gods know it won't be the first one I've ever had."

"Still, I hurt you and I really didn't mean to. Maybe...maybe I could make it up to you."

Joxer clamped his mouth shut before he could respond with something asinine like, "That's okay," or "Don't worry about it," or "I'm fine." No, no, if Gabrielle wanted to make it up to him then he was damn well going to let her. "Um, ok."

She smiled a bit shyly, gazing down at him from beneath a shower of red-gold hair. "Let's see...Oh, I know, whenever I hurt myself as a kid my mom would always kiss it and make it better. Why don't we try that?"

That sounded just fine.

Still brushing the side of his face lightly, she leaned over and ever so softly kissed him. Then she repeated the action, adding just a hint of tongue. Softly, ever so softly she covered every square inch of his cheek. At first it had been a bit startling to taste her own juices still glistening on his face, but there was also something oddly enticing about it. She moved a little ways down his jaw then drew back to meet his somewhat glazed eyes. "Ok, where else?"

His mouth worked silently for several seconds before he said, "Uh...ah, my chest is kinda sore."

She repositioned herself and began the same gentle attentions to his chest, only this time adding in a tongue swirl to each of his nipples. He drew in a sharp breath each time she gently teased one, and nearly yelped when she took first one then the other between her teeth. Oh yeah, he was feeling better by the second.

Between kisses she began to murmur, "Poor baby..." Taking a moment to pay particular attention to the scar just below his right shoulder, she recalled with some little guilt that she'd been responsible for that too. If only she'd listened to Xena about Callisto he'd never have had to go running in there to try and save them both. She knew from personal experience that being shot by an arrow was far from a pleasant experience. "Poor baby..." she cooed again.

A rather silly smile spread across Joxer's expressive features and his eyes drifted shut. She was being so nice, so gentle, so attentive; dare he believe that perhaps she might offer him some physical relief as well? What a lovely thought. 'Just a little lower,' he murmured internally.

Gabrielle noted that splayed out like this a certain part of Joxer's anatomy was rather difficult to ignore. No wonder Meg's gals adored him, a "sword" like his was enough to make her just a little lightheaded. She wondered what it would be like to feel him inside her. Would he fill her perfectly? Would she be able to handle him? She felt nearly as nervous as her honeymoon night. Of course she had had sex before, but one night with Perdicas did not an experienced woman make. And Perdicas had been...well...pretty straightforward about the entire act. She'd been flat on her back, he pumping away over her, both grunting and sweating. But now, now she was on top, Joxer lying helpless and passive beneath her. She could, quite literally, do anything she wanted; it was a bit of a daunting concept.

On the other hand, she was a bard and if she intended to write about certain sexual acts, it was her duty to actually experience them first. "Write what you know." she mumbled into Joxer's pale abdomen. This was research, pure and simple.

Curiosity was impelling her ever further down his body, and with each new inch of skin she covered with her feather light kisses the shallower Joxer's breathing became. By the time she reached his hips he was beginning to twitch and moan softly. Pausing, she turned to look up at him once more. "Does this hurt too?" she asked coyly.

Joxer was way beyond articulation at this point and simply nodded vigorously.

"Well then, guess I should kiss it and make it all better, huh?" Gabrielle's grin was downright disconcerting. "But first, I think I'd better give you something to bite on...wouldn't want you to hurt yourself would we?" Grabbing her discarded panties she popped them into his mouth before he could protest. It wouldn't do to have him bellowing out his pleasure for all the world to hear.

Chapter 7 - "Hi, Honey, I'm Home!" By Julia Donnelly

It had been a very bad day. First she'd had to fight her way through a gang of ruffians blocking the road, then she'd run into Draco, and a frustrating encounter it was. For both of them. The Warrior Princess was now hot and bothered, and looking forward to a nice cold swim. After she found Gabrielle and gave her a good tongue-lashing for keeping her waiting.

Xena didn't like to be kept waiting, and Gabrielle was over two hours late. She'd better have a damned good excuse, or else. Xena smiled as she imagined the possible "what elses" she might inflict.

By the time Xena found Gabrielle, she was spoiling for a fight, or something to work off all the excess energy she'd accumulated. It was bad enough she'd had to go looking for her wayward bard, but who did she find had been distracting her? Joxer. Of course.

"Well, Gabrielle, what have you got to say for yourself?"

"What? Oh, Xena! Heh, heh. Hi. Um...this isn't what it looks like."

Joxer mumbled through the white panties filling his mouth, "Hi, Xena."

Xena raised one eloquent eyebrow, and Gabrielle elaborated. "Well, all right, it is what it looks like. But he's had it coming to him! You have no idea how annoying, how irritating he's been!"

Joxer was trying to protest, but Xena had no idea what he was trying to say. He did look alarmed, though. As well he should.

Xena looked from one to the other of them. Gabrielle was naked, flushed and breathing heavily. Her hair was mussed and she had at least three hickeys that Xena could see.

Joxer didn't look much better. He was naked, except for the ropes binding him. He had a few marks that appeared to be bruises, a couple of hickeys, and was blushing like crazy. It was astonishing that he didn't appear to be sunburned. He also sported an erection that would make Ares envious.

Xena smiled slowly as she took in the sight her two friends presented.

"Say, is this a private party or can anyone play?"

Gabrielle looked at her in shock, then slowly grinned. Joxer looked enticingly panic-stricken.

"Let the games begin!" Xena smirked.

Chapter 8 - Exhibitionism: Greek Style by Ellie

From his prone position beneath Gabby on the ground Xena made an even more impressive figure than usual. He cringed a bit as she moved closer and eyed both himself and the wayward bard with a speculative eye. "Looks like you two have been busy." Inspecting the ropes binding him with a raised eyebrow she murmured, "You know that's a rather sloppy job you've made of those restraints. A ten-year-old could wiggle free without too much effort."

Joxer was about to point out that he had absolutely no interest in freeing himself, but Gabrielle jumped in first with, "Oh and I'm sure you could do so much better..."

" a matter of fact..." Ice blue eyes narrowed with mischief and Joxer came to the speedy conclusion that he was a dead man.

She loosed his legs and grasping his arms, dragged the prone man to his feet. A flick of her wrist removed his makeshift gag. He blinked, a bit dizzy with his sudden return to an upright position...combined with the fact that most of the blood in his body had taken a more southerly route. Xena was smiling as she glanced over to where the bard was standing. "Gabrielle, hand me your top, would you?"

The blonde's eyebrows narrowed with confusion. "Beg pardon?"

"The top, Gabrielle, give it to me."

"What do you want that for?" she grumbled, bending to retrieve her errant clothing. "Unless you want me to get dressed for some don't want me to get dressed, do you?"

Xena procured the offered garment and murmured, "Oh no, my dear girl, I have an altogether different use in mind for this."

Joxer cringed, suddenly imagining Xena dressing him in full bardic costume, skirt and top, and parading him through the nearest town. Not that the idea didn't have some merit, but he could think of a number of more interesting and pleasant ways to spend the afternoon. However, the warrior princess didn't seem interested in unlacing the top to make it conform to Joxer's physique, rather she slipped it over his head far enough to cover his eyes then pulled the laces tight.

"Oh!" Gabrielle chirped. "A blindfold."

"Yup." A few tugs and a neat knot held the makeshift blindfold firmly in place. "Not too tight is it, Joxer?"

"N-no..." Somehow the idea of being naked, tied up and blindfolded was making him both intensely uneasy and incessantly aroused all at the same time. "But why don't you want me to see...?"

Xena's deep, throaty voice purred in his right ear, "You should be asking what don't I want you to see. Don't you worry your pretty little head about it, just relax and follow me." With that she tugged gently on his arms, pulling him along beside her as she walked out of the clearing. Gabrielle gazed at her friend in astonishment, but Xena shushed her with a motion. The bard decided to play along for the moment.

They carefully led the helpless man between them, stepping over twigs and avoiding anything sharp or harmful to his bare feet. Within seconds he was totally lost, with no idea of what direction their clearing (and his armor) lay in, or where they might be heading. Finally he was tugged to a halt and strong arms eased him back down onto the ground. He could feel Xena's larger, more heavily calloused hands redoing his bound arms, then drawing them up over his head. They were secured to something firm before the same procedure was repeated on his legs. He felt like a lamb laid out for slaughter on a temple altar.

"Joxer, do you know where we are?" It was Xena's voice again, very close to his face.

"Uh..." He contemplated at least attempting to feign some sort of knowledge, but quickly came to the conclusion that Xena wasn't going to be fooled for an instant. "N-no."

"Would you like me to tell you?"

Now there was a loaded question if ever he heard one. Did he really want to know? "Ah...yeah..."

"We're just a little south of the road just at the edge of the forest. I'm telling you this because I want you to know that at any minute someone could come walking by and see you. See everything we're doing."

His breath caught and he felt his guts turn to ice. What was she doing?

"As a matter of fact, I think I see someone right about you, Gabrielle?"

He felt the bard's flushed skin rubbing up against his left side. "I think you're right, Xena. They're a little ways off yet...we've got some time."

Steamy kisses showered his chest and abdomen as Xena breathed, "Some time, but not much."

Gabrielle nipped gently at his thighs while sighing, "Do you think they'll see us?"

"I don't see how they couldn't." Xena's tongue looped around each nipple and Joxer arched with need.

He could feel Gabby's lips stretch into a smile. "Oooh that was nice, make him do it again."

"Yeah, I think I gonna' put on a show for us, Joxer? Gonna put on a show for those strangers too? I bet they'll stop to watch. Let's give 'em and eyeful, what do you say?"

Joxer whimpered deep in his throat. His desire to have these beautiful, amazing women lavish his body with erotic attention was battling with the very real fear of being ogled by perfect strangers. But what could he do? He was quite literally at Xena and Gabrielle's mercy. He felt hideously exposed and more than a little frightened. If he asked to be released right now, would they? He let the terror build up inside him, and noted that as it grew, so did his body's need for release. "Please..." he moaned.

"Please what?" Xena's voice was stern, commanding, both thrilling and terrifying at once.

"Please, I need...I want..." he was too lightheaded from fear and arousal to force a complete sentence out.

"They're getting closer, Joxer, you'd better make up your mind..."

"I need...I need you to..."

"To what? You have to say it, Joxer, but better make it quick."

"I need you to fuck me, please!" he wailed.

A body, he wasn't quite sure who's, straddled his hips expertly. Delicate, but firm fingers guided him into her warm, welcoming folds. 'Gabrielle,' his mind whispered, 'it's Gabrielle.' He attempted to thrust into her, but between the bonds and her own solid weight it was nearly impossible. She seemed to sense his frustration and began to work herself up and down his shaft with loving gentleness. "Come on, Joxer, come on," she groaned, aligning her body for maximum pleasure. "You'd better hurry, those strangers are almost here."

Frantic, Joxer's entire body arched and stiffened in a vain effort to thrust into her inviting warmth. She met his movements with equal ardor and a zeal he'd never have expected; all the while cajoling him to hurry. He wanted to growl, "I'm trying." but coherent speech was totally out of the question. Just when his poor, frazzled brain could take no more and his body felt like a sword on Hephaestus' forge, something within him burst free and he came almost violently.

For a few seconds all he could hear was the blood pounding in his ears, but slowly he became aware of Gabrielle panting above him. She sprinkled his chest and shoulders with kisses, then mumbled soothingly into his neck. Joxer was startled when the blindfold was yanked rather abruptly from his eyes. It took him a few seconds to blink away the shadows and colorful bursts, then looking around realized where he was. "Hey! We're back in the"

"Did you honestly think we'd truss you up like a prize hen and display you for anybody who happened by?" Xena's grin was positively wicked.

Chapter 9 - Water Follies by Julia Donnelly

"Well, no...of course not!" Joxer's voice took on a scornful tone.

Xena rolled her eyes. "Hey, Gabrielle, are you going to give me a turn here or not?"

"What? Oh!" The bard's green eyes sparkled with mischief. She clung all the more tightly to Joxer. "No, I don't think so. I found him first."

"Yeah, so he followed you home. So?"

"Can I keep him?" Gabby begged.

Joxer held his breath, hardly daring to believe his good fortune.

Xena gave them both a long, speculative look. "Well, as long as you agree to share him with me..."

"Deal!" Gabrielle said quickly.

Joxer didn't mind the fact that neither of them was bothering to consult with him. As if he would protest this little arrangement!

Very reluctantly, his beloved bard let go of him, but not before kissing him on the mouth in such a loving, lingering way, it almost made him think she might really be in love with him. Almost. There seemed to be a bit more lust in her eyes than anything else, but of course, that was good, too. He'd settle for that.

Xena was growing impatient, tapping one booted foot while waiting for Gabrielle to give her some space to work. She glanced around the clearing, and noticed the inviting pool, just waiting for her. It had been a long day on a dusty road, and she was tired and hot.

"Come on, Gabrielle. I could use a swim, and you probably could too."

"What about me?" Joxer asked anxiously. He didn't want to be left out of anything so potentially fun.

"I don't know. What do you think, Xena?"

A slow smile spread across the warrior's face as her eyes lit up with mirth. "Oh, yeah."

There was something in those simple words that froze Joxer's insides. What exactly did she have planned?

Xena started untying him from his current position, then tied his hands together again, so they were behind him. Pulling him to his feet, she led him towards the water. Gabrielle followed curiously, wondering what her friend had in her devious mind.

Joxer's clothes were still drying on the flat rock where he'd left them. He was relieved to find them, worried he'd maybe lost them for good. At Xena's direction, Gabrielle neatly folded up the clothes and set them on the ground, making sure there were no anthills or other annoyances nearby.

"Just relax here and wait till we're done," Xena told him generously.

He was about to protest, then shut his mouth. He was going to be permitted to watch the two of them take a bath together? It was something he'd often fantasized about, but the closest he'd come to that was a time he'd rather not be reminded of, thank you very much. They hadn't minded his presence then, but the circumstances were less than ideal. This time neither of the women was covered with a revolting substance, and they actually wanted him to watch. He could hardly believe his good fortune.

Joxer made himself as comfortable as possible on the rock and watched with rapt attention while Xena stripped off her armor, and everything she wore under it. He thought she was taking rather a long time about it, but since she was obviously trying to give him a good show, he didn't really mind.

Gabrielle seemed just the slightest bit annoyed that Xena was the focus of his attention, but if she'd walked over to him he'd have been happy to show her how much he was still attracted to her. It didn't seem wise to say anything at the moment, and annoy Xena. Nope. An annoyed bard was a much better bargain than an irritated Xena. Still, he reflected, he'd never seriously hoped to have the two of them vying for his attention in such a way. He wondered how many of his other fantasies concerning either or both of them might come true before they came to their, got tired of having him hanging around.

On the other hand, it really sounded like Gabby was becoming quite fond of him, and Xena was... What was she doing? Joxer blinked, not sure he'd seen what he'd just seen. My, she certainly was trying to keep his attention. He grinned and resolved to keep himself focused on exactly what was going on in front of him. Oh, my...

As he watched the two women cavorting in the water, undoubtedly exaggerating some of their affection for his benefit, he considered himself to be the luckiest man in all of Greece. However, he was getting very frustrated, and hoped they hadn't actually forgotten about him. A moment later he realized that wasn't the case at all, as Xena climbed out of the pool and walked over to him.

"So, are you ready for a swim?" she asked, her voice husky.

"Oh, yeah..." he managed to say, before she grasped him by his waist and lifted him to his feet.

"If I untie your hands, do you promise to do whatever Gabrielle or I tell you?"

"Oh, yeah!" he agreed enthusiastically. "No problem!"

Xena turned her head to look towards the pool, where the blonde bard was waiting expectantly for both of them. "Do you think I should let him go?"

"What? No way!" Then she realized what her friend meant. It also occurred to her that it was highly unlikely it had even crossed Jox's mind to run away. "Oh, uh, yeah, that's fine." She began to think what those clever hands could do, if given the chance, and began breathing faster.

Xena untied the ropes in a matter of seconds, then considerately rubbed Joxer's wrists to restore the circulation. "Oh, look at those marks," she said in a voice he'd never heard from her before. "Shouldn't mar such pretty skin."

Before he had a chance to even process her words, she had lifted his right wrist to her mouth and kissed the reddened skin, much the way Gabby had kissed the bruise on his cheek. Apparently not thinking that was enough, she began licking the marked flesh, running her tongue sensuously around his wrist in an incredibly suggestive way. He closed his eyes and imagined her doing the same thing to another part of his anatomy, which obediently sprang to attention. He held his other hand out to her hopefully, but Xena just smiled and took his hand, leading him to the water's edge. Letting go of his hand, she jumped in, splashing him and Gabrielle.

Now that was a challenge he couldn't let go unanswered. With a fierce battle cry he leaped into the water. Which was shockingly cold.

"Come on, Gabby, want to help me give him a bath?" he vaguely heard through the water in his ears. Or hoped he heard.

Chapter 10 - Put Your Hands On Me by Ellie

The warrior wannabe resurfaced rather explosively and sputtered, "Did you ? I mean, I thought you said..."

"C'mere, Joxer," Gabrielle emphasized her statement with a slowly curling finger and an expression that would've put one of Meg's gals to shame.

He didn't have to be told twice, no sir, and slogged gamely through the rippling pond to her side. Truth be told, he was in desperate need of another bath. All the grime and dead ants that had been washed away with his last dip were replaced by dirt, dead leaves, and some particularly unpleasant little pebbles that had managed to wedge themselves in the most uncomfortable positions.

"Bend down a little bit," she murmured once he'd reached her side. "You're too tall!"

Moving down in the water until only his head remained above, the bard moved behind him and pulled his head back to rest against her chest. Then, slowly and with deliberate care, she started to cup water in her hands and pour it gently over his hair. She seemed to be taking special care not to get any in his eyes. That in and of itself struck Joxer as an incredibly thoughtful act. Indeed his own mother, when she'd taken the time to bathe him at all, had merely dunked his head under the nearest pool of water and scrubbed until she was reasonably sure he was clean. Or that his air supply had run out.

Gabrielle began to run her hands through his damp hair, rewetting her hands every once in a while. He didn't imagine that her method would be the best for getting out any remaining grit and grime, but it certainly was holding his attention. So much so in fact that he had completely lost track of Xena's whereabouts. He felt a wave break against his side as she joined their little party and pulled his left arm out rather tenderly. Pressing each finger against her lips, first one then the next slipped into her inviting and incredibly skilled mouth. Each one received thorough attention from tongue and lips before she moved onto the next. Next came the palm, which her tongue danced over, at once flicking lightly, and then trailing in long, lingering strokes from heel to tips of his fingers.

He'd never noticed before just how exquisitely sensitive the underside of his hands truly were, nor that they could be so intensely erotic. By the time she moved on to the back of his hand his eyes had slipped shut and his mouth hung slack. Between her attentions to his extremity and Gabrielle's continued massage of his head he felt like he'd actually died and gone to the Elysian Fields.

Apparently satisfied with the current cleanliness of his left hand, Xena dunked it once below the surface of the water, then brought it up to her cheek. Pressing one more kiss into his palm, she dragged it slowly down her long, graceful throat, over one well-muscled shoulder, and settled it firmly over her right breast. Joxer's breath caught in his throat and his eyes opened with a start. Xena merely smirked back at him, continuing to direct the movements of his hand and arm as if it were an extension of her own body.

He felt the slight dimpling of the scar that marred her otherwise flawless bosom. The smoothness startled him a bit. He'd always assumed that like her hands, all the other parts of the warrior princesses body were equally hardened by her dark deeds and difficult past. But no, it seemed that her physique showed precious little ill effects from a life filled with battle...or certain parts of her body, anyway.

When she repeated the action with her left breast he noted that her nipples had become little knobs, though whether from his passive stimulation or the chill of the water he couldn't tell. She did seem to be enjoying herself, though, and he knew without question that he was.

Joxer could've easily spent an entire afternoon allowing Xena to guide his hands in lazy circles back and forth from one breast to the other, however it seemed the warrior had other ideas. She drew first his fingers, then his palm across her flat, muscled abdomen and smiled again as his breath came out in a choppy rush.

Languorously Xena directed his hand over her ribs and down over her hip to trace the firm slope of her thigh. Both were panting now, and Joxer nearly cried out with a mixture of passion and surprise as she guided him over her mound to explore her most sensitive center. At first he was too startled to fully grasp what was happening, but as realization slowly flooded back to his overtaxed brain he began to move his fingers around her clitoris. This earned him a sternly disapproving look. "Un-uh, keep still or we'll make you sit on the shore."

Xena's voice left absolutely no room for argument, so Joxer let his arm go slack once more. Smiling with satisfaction she began to guide his digits once more, squeezing and tickling her inner lips. Some part of him noted with interest that her right side seemed to be the most sensitive and stored that information away for future use.

Within moments her own eyes were half-lidded with desire and her breath was coming in ever shorter gasps. "Yessssss..." she moaned, using both strong hands to move his in ever faster circles around her engorged clit. Joxer was enthralled by the expression of bliss on the hardened warrior's countenance. He'd seen her filled with bloodlust, or glaring at some opponent, or even giggling helplessly with the bard over some shared joke, but this was the first time he'd seen her so completely unguarded. As her eyes rolled up and her body spasmed with pleasure, Joxer felt as if he'd been given the most precious gift imaginable.

He, Joxer, barely tolerated by...well...everyone, was being allowed to pleasure the warrior princess herself. It was almost a mind-boggling experience. Not so very long ago it would've been the sort of thing to make him dash madly for the nearest public space and cry out his triumph to the world. A story that would've made the rounds of every tavern in Greece. Now, though, he just wanted to treasure this moment keep it between himself and the two beautiful, amazing women who were sharing it with him.

As Xena came back to herself and even the tremors in her sex began to still, Joxer met her blue eyes and quietly said, "Thank you."

She smiled, leaned forward, and nuzzled his neck. "What a good boy...Gabrielle, hasn't he been a good boy?"

From behind him he heard her lighter voice murmur, "Oh, yes, yes he has."

"And what do good boys get?

The bard paused for a moment in consideration, then returned, "A reward?"

"My thoughts exactly..."

Chapter 11 - A Rewarding Experience by Julia Donnelly

"Yes, he most definitely deserves a reward," Gabrielle sighed, still running her fingers through his hair.

Joxer was quivering with antici...pation, wondering what his reward would be. He could still feel some grit and tiny rocks, that were marring his otherwise perfect moment.

"Trade places with me," Xena said, looking significantly at her bard.

Gabby thought about it a moment, then decided there were some interesting things she could do if she were facing Joxer that would be harder to do from behind him.

"Okay." Running her fingers one last time through his hair, she sighed, then relinquished her post.

Joxer felt Gabrielle slip away from him, but she was almost immediately replaced by Xena.

"I'll make sure you get clean, while Gabby gives you your reward," Xena smirked.

Joxer sighed with abandon, spreading his legs out further on the sandy bottom of the pond.

"I can't very well do it while he's underwater," Gabrielle scolded Xena. "I'll get water up my nose and drown."

Xena rolled her eyes, then whispered to a very startled but hopeful Joxer.

With a grin so wide it threatened to split his face, he tried to let his body go limp. It cooperated, except for one area, which wasn't about to go down for anything. Xena helped him by lifting him off his feet and supporting his back until he was able to float comfortably.

"I'll hold him still...sort of," Xena offered, as she ran her hands over his body. She dislodged bits of gravel and small stones as she found them. "Ooh, that's gotta hurt!" she mumbled as she found one in a particularly tender spot.

Joxer wasn't sure whether to be happier about Xena's surprisingly gentle ministrations or the imminent promise of Elysium if Gabby was going to do what he hoped she was going to do. She certainly seemed to be contemplating it, staring at his upthrust member as if it were an icon to worship. The heat of her gaze alone was enough to thrill him, but when she swam between his legs, then stood and firmly planted her feet into the soft sand, he knew one of his greatest fantasies was about to be fulfilled.

Gabrielle's mouth, which she used so eloquently to sing praises and to hurl sarcastic barbs, was about to be filled with something much more filling than empty words. He hoped he wouldn't die from the sheer pleasure of it.

Gabby stared at the enormous offering raised in her honor, a little intimidated by its size. She wished she'd had some experience of this with Perdicas, but they hadn't had time to do everything on their wedding night.

"Want some help?" Xena offered with a smirk. "I can tell you what to do."

"Thank you, but I'm perfectly capable of figuring it out on my own," Gabrielle said, lifting her chin defiantly. She made the mistake of looking at Joxer's face, and knew she'd have to do something soon. This was supposed to be a reward, not torture. All right, and if she were rewarding herself at the same time, she didn't think he'd complain about that.

"Suit yourself," Xena said, trying to hold Joxer in place. She let him rest his head on her bosom, which only seemed to inflame his ardor.

Gabby moved closer, getting as close as she could to the object of her temporary obsession. It did look awfully big to fit in her mouth, but even if she couldn't get it all in, it should be fun trying. She didn't think Jox would object too much if she only got it part-way in, she reasoned.

Licking her lips, she bent down and tried to place a kiss on it, but the movement of the water was interfering, and he kept drifting away. Growling in annoyance, Gabrielle gripped his hips tightly in her hands and tried to hold him in place. She couldn't see what Xena was doing, but from the blissful smile on Joxer's face, she bet it was something naughty.

Gabby bent down again, and this time managed to capture the tip of his penis between her lips. She sucked gently, and was rewarded with a long, low moan as Joxer tried not to pass out. Flicking the tip of her tongue out, she brushed it lightly across the flared head, thrilling herself almost as much as Joxer. It felt so...different. Unique. She flicked it again. And it tasted so good! She knew she would have to remember this moment so she could record it in the epic she would write about this day.

She didn't realize she was holding his hips hard enough to leave bruises, but Joxer wasn't about to complain. What she was doing felt so good he didn't think he could stand it, but he wasn't about to let it stop now. As tempting as it would be to come right then and there, he wanted to allow himself and Gabby the opportunity to experience this fully. He exerted every ounce of willpower he possessed, then closed his eyes for good measure. Trying to watch what she was doing was too distracting and far, far too exciting to continue doing it. And if Xena continued doing what she was doing with those long, strong, clever fingers of hers, he might not be able to wait for Gabby to finish exploring him. He wasn't about to ask Xena to stop, though, not for anything.

Xena sighed as she continued letting her fingers do the walking, all in the name of keeping her promise to get him clean, she assured her conscience. Not that Joxer looked like he was complaining. Bending her head just a bit, she kissed the top of his head and sighed. He really was very sweet, and so cooperative. It just took a little affection, and he would respond as if he'd been given the sun, the moon and the stars. It took so little to please him, really, and all they did was find ways to torment him, it seemed. She'd known for a long time how Joxer felt about Gabrielle, and though she sympathized with him, the feeling wasn't strong enough to try to bring the bard around to the truth. It was far more amusing to watch the little dance they played, Joxer pursuing and Gabby staying one step behind. Now she was beginning to regret all the time they'd wasted teasing him, when they could have been doing things like this, enjoying his finer attributes all this time. Oh well, no use crying over spilled goat's milk. He was here now, and he was all theirs, and he would undoubtedly be agreeable to anything of a sexual nature they cared to inflict on him. Xena grinned as her fertile imagination began to concoct some possible future escapades.

Meanwhile, Joxer was completely unaware of the actual coherent thoughts running through Xena's brain, as he had no such things troubling his head. He was doing his best to disengage his brain from his body, so as to be more able to fully enjoy what Gabrielle was doing. It was obvious she didn't have much experience, but he didn't mind at all. In other circumstances he'd have been happy to teach her everything she needed to know, but he was quite pleased with the progress she was making on her own. Each little lick she applied so lovingly, as she made her way down his cock, made him come that much closer to ultimate fulfillment. He knew she wouldn't be able to take him all in at first. Even Meg had found it a bit difficult to take every inch into her mouth, though she'd gamely tried 'til she accomplished her goal. He wouldn't expect Gabby to even come close to Meg's abilities, not yet anyway, but the slightest touch of her lips or mouth to his body sent shivers of delight all the way up his spine. He was very glad he was lying down and Xena was somewhat supporting him. If he'd been standing while Gabby was doing this to him, he'd surely have fallen, causing them both possible permanent injury. No, this was far better.

Gabrielle took another fraction of an inch, determined to suck every inch inside her mouth. Her tongue made languorous sweeping motions against his skin. She'd been amazed how soft his skin was, covering a core of what felt like the finest steel. Surely Xena's sword wasn't this hard, she thought in wonder. And it was all hers, just waiting for her slightest caress. The thought almost made her want to weep, that Joxer would want her so fiercely. She was more determined than ever to truly reward him, and suck him off to the best of her ability.

Joxer thought he would go mad from the intensity of his feelings. Xena's fingers were imbedded deeply in him, stroking him in a place few women had dared to try to locate, and it was driving him wild. He was still determined to hold off for Gabby, so he could make it as good for her as possible. All he had to do was make sure he didn't get overstimulated, and then he could control his orgasm so as not to choke her.

Gabby had no idea of the direction of his thoughts, or if indeed he had any thoughts. At the moment, in her eyes he was spirit made flesh, a loving, caring being who had given her and Xena so much pleasure. It seemed the least she could do to try to return that pleasure.

She was holding him as tightly to her as she could, bracing him against her body. Because of the buoyancy of the water, she was able to support him without hurting herself, but she wanted even more of a sense of closeness. She sucked avidly at the delightful present Joxer had so thoughtfully given her.

At that moment she was distracted by a rather irritated-sounding voice.

"Hey, Gabby, don't hog the whole thing to yourself! Save some for me!"

Gabrielle looked up long enough to glare at her best friend. She would have growled, but she realized that baring her teeth in that manner could cause injury to her current favorite plaything.

Xena's gaze was heavy lidded as she inserted another finger into Joxer, trying to ease all four into his tight passage. If only she could get her thumb to join in the fun, she was sure she could give Joxer the ride of his life.

"You want some of this?" Gabby asked, finally lifting her mouth away long enough to speak.

Xena nodded as Joxer tried to reign in his disappointment.

"You're going to have to ask really nicely before I share this with you," Gabby smugly declared, then went back to the task at hand.

"Save some for me or you're going to live to regret it," Xena growled.

Gabby decided that was nice enough, under the circumstances. Taking her mouth away once more, she directed her next question to Joxer.

"Do you think you can give me what I want, and still have some left over for Xena?"

"I can...only...hope to try," Joxer managed to gasp.

"See, he IS a good boy," Gabby purred happily, before engulfing him deeply into her mouth.

"You bet," Xena said enthusiastically, her hand almost all the way inside Joxer. "So, are you going to come or not?" she whispered into his ear. A shudder went through his body, very nearly answering her question for her.

"Come on, Gabby, let the poor guy come," Xena pleaded. "Then let me have a turn."

Joxer really wasn't sure he could survive this and Xena's turn as well, but he was game to try. He'd always tried to be a good sport, and it was finally paying off.

Chapter 12--The Ecstasy and the Agony by Ellie

Xena gauged his current level of excitement against her own chances of coaxing him to an equal one and decided that while Joxer might be a sturdy young man, she couldn't be sure he had that much stamina. Best not to take a chance. Catching Gabrielle's attention with a slight splash the warrior murmured, "Got an idea, keep supporting your end with your right hand then move around to his side."

"But..." the bard began when she'd cleared her mouth of its delightful obstruction.

"Just trust me here," her friend replied, keeping her own right hand under Joxer's shoulders, and her left exploring his nether regions. Once they were positioned across from each other Xena said, "What if we take turns? Maybe make it into a bit of a contest."

"Contest?" Gabrielle looked dubious.

"Yeah, first one that gets him off wins."

The younger woman paused to consider this. Xena was definitely the more experienced of the two, she probably knew ways of exciting a man that Gabrielle had never even dreamed of. On the other hand, Joxer adored her, and had made it clear that her mere touch could send him spiraling towards ecstasy. So all things considered it actually was a pretty level playing field. "Ok, what do we win?"

"Mmm, loser makes lunch."

Green eyes sparkling, Gabrielle replied, "So if I win, I still lose."

Her companion glared then grumbled, "Is it a deal?"

"All right, who goes first?"

"Well." Xena was smiling a little too widely for her friend's comfort.

"It seems to me you've just had a chance to get him warmed up, so I should go first."

"All right, but shouldn't we set some sort of a time limit on this? Say two minutes, then we switch?" The warrior seemed agreeable so Gabrielle started a silent, "One Autolycus, two Autolycus, three Autolycus" count.

Xena now had three reasons to throw herself fully into the fray. One, she hated losing. Two, she really did want to please Joxer. And three, there was no way in Tartarus she was making lunch. She engulfed the tip of his member with her mouth and noted casually that Draco himself would've been envious...and that was really saying something. Remembering a particularly interesting move that had always sent the warlord into fits, she used her teeth to nibble her way down his cock. Then she dragged lips and tongue back up once more. The combination of sensations had Joxer twitching like a fish on land. She was sure one more track of her tongue would send him careening over, when Gabby called out, "Time."

Growling in frustration, the warrior pulled away and favored her friend with a completely fake smile. It was returned in full force by the bard who contemplated her task ahead. Her mission, should she choose to accept it, was to get Joxer to come as quickly as possible. Apparently her original approach wasn't quite doing the trick, but then again neither had Xena's fancier style. Right, time to try something a little different. Instead of aiming for the base of his shaft, she concentrated on its head. She ran her tongue around the tip, keeping her strokes light at first, then intensifying them into tight little circles. Joxer's entire body had stiffened and he trembled from head to foot. He was so close, she could almost feel the orgasm waiting to happen, that was when Xena rather maliciously cooed, "Time."

Gabrielle shot her a murderous look but straightened and nodded for her friend to continue. Somehow Joxer was still managing to breathe, though every other breath was now accompanied by a whimper. 'The poor dear,' Xena thought, 'so close and yet so far.' It was definitely time to end this. With a suddenness that made even Gabrielle gasp, Xena plunged her mouth down on Joxer's hardened cock, totally engulfing him. She was pumping him fast and hard in seconds with a single minded determination that the bard truly envied. He was struggling against the onslaught, she could tell, perhaps wanting to award the game to his lady love. Unfortunately, his near exhausted body couldn't hope to stave off the wave of intense pleasure that warmed his stomach and sent shockwaves from toes to crown. Screaming, he came into Xena's welcoming mouth.

As his body splashed back down into the water Gabrielle realized rather belatedly that she'd completely forgot to count. Ah well, she could afford to be magnanimous. "Looks like I'm cooking lunch."

There were only two previous moments in his life, that Joxer could readily call to mind, where he'd felt even a fraction of the sheer joy he was currently experiencing. One had been that amazing evening when, at the age of 16, his father called him to the armory to present him with the scabbard (a family heirloom) that now never left his side. Well, almost never.

The other time was that memorable night the neighboring triplets (Sasha, Mina, and Zosia) took it into their heads to play a rousing game of "I'll show you mine if you'll show me yours". That evening in his parents' stable had been both enjoyable and educational. Of course neither of his brothers had believed a word of it when he'd attempted to cash in on his bragging rights.

He wondered fleetingly what Jett would make of his current situation.

Undoubtedly the assassin would head for the nearest temple of Asclepias to have his eyes checked. Then over to the Temple of Aphrodite to find out why she'd put Xena and Gabrielle under a lust spell and directed their amorous affections towards his idiot brother. That thought made Joxer actually stiffen with concern. What if this, everything that had happened this afternoon, was another love spell meant to leave him feeling and looking like a fool. 'Then I'd better enjoy it while it lasts,' his brain supplied helpfully.

That thought helped him relax and enjoy the dreamy, buzzing warmth that still held him limp and listless. Enjoying the feeling of complete satisfaction and lingering bliss, he was content to lie here forever. Nature, it seemed, had other plans. A rather hard...something...bumped against his backside. In an instant he went from confused to startled to terrified as that same something pinched his posterior.

With a shriek that would've done a harpy proud, Joxer shot up out of the water. Displaying a sudden burst of energy none of three would've thought him capable of, he ran screaming for the shore. Once there he proceeded to run in a frantic circle, waving his arms and hollering every expletive he could remember from his father's vast vocabulary.

Xena's keen eyes noted the crustacean now firmly attached to her new lover's lovely cheek. Gabrielle was still standing, mouth agape at Joxer's actions, as the warrior princess leaned over and grabbed a rock from the pool's bottom. She paused a moment to gauge his movements then grinned and let her weapon fly. The projectile ricocheted off a rock, two trees, and Joxer's discarded breastplate before removing the wannabe warrior's unwelcome passenger.

He let out one final yelp then moaned and rubbed his bottom ruefully. 'First land bugs, now the water variety,' he thought miserably. Somebody definitely had it in for him. He was still processing that concept when his right foot came down on a pointed rock. "Yeow!" Joxer hollered, grabbing the painful appendage in both hands and hopping around on his remaining foot. Unfortunately his balance was rather unreliable with two feet firmly on the ground, one put him at a decided disadvantage. It took only a fraction of a second for him to feel the world tilting at an alarming rate. He managed to come down hard...on his backside. "Ow!" he exclaimed, attempting to lift that portion of his anatomy out of harm's way, only to feel the back of his head connect rather solidly with what he thought he recognized as a tree--just before everything went black.

Chapter 13 - Down For The Count, But Up To The Challenge or Who Was That Masked Man? by Julia Donnelly

Gabrielle ran to Joxer's side and looked him over carefully. She was relieved to see he was still breathing.

"Xena, throw me my skirt, will you?"

With an inquiring look, Xena tossed the garment towards the blond. "Don't you want your top, too?"

"No, this is fine." Spreading the skirt out on the ground, she sat on it, making herself comfortable.

"He'll be fine, Gabrielle," Xena said in a bored tone. "How many times has he hit his head since we've known him? Let alone the times we weren't there?"

The bard shot her an exasperated look as she cradled Joxer's head on her lap. "You might not care what happens to him, but I do." She started gently stroking his forehead, her touch soothing, if not exactly healing.

"He's going to live. Just give him a couple of minutes to come out of it. In the meantime, I'm starving. Come on, you're supposed to fix lunch."

"How can you think about food when Joxer's hurt?" Gabrielle asked with a whine.

Xena rolled her eyes and muttered something her friend couldn't hear.

"I'll tell you what," the warrior bargained. "I'll go get us something to eat, but you have to clean it and cook it." Seeing the look of disgust on Gabby's face, she added persuasively, "By the time I come back he'll have woken up and you can fix lunch without worrying that you're neglecting him."

"Well, I guess so..."

Xena didn't wait to hear anything else. She was in a hurry to get going. They still had to collect Argo, who would no doubt be impatient.

Almost as soon as Xena left the clearing, Joxer stirred. He turned his head to the side, promptly banging his nose into a warm, bare thigh. "Gabby?" he murmured groggily.

"Right here, sweetie," she cooed, her fingers straying down his neck and onto his chest.

He decided to ignore the pain in his head, foot, and posterior. Pain he was used to. Being so close to Gabrielle, he was not. Tentatively he parted his lips and breathed onto her damp skin. She shivered, and he followed up with an inquiring lick. She squealed in what sounded like delight, so he did it again.

"You feeling okay, Jox?" she asked with concern.

"Hm? Oh, fine," he mumbled against her skin.

"That's good. Say, as long as you're there..."

He didn't need a second invitation. Pulling himself up slightly so he could reach her without hurting his neck too badly, he ran his tongue through golden curls until he reached his destination. Gabby shivered and held his head in place. She could hardly believe how dense she'd been, ignoring this wonderful man, who had such incredible hidden talents. She was quite certain other women would pay a lot of dinars to be in her position right at the moment. He was so good, and his tongue was doing such amazing things to her that she could barely think straight.

"Well, I see you're feeling better, Joxer," Xena drawled.

He immediately stopped what he was doing and looked up at Xena, annoyed at being interrupted.

Gabrielle snapped her head around and glared at her friend, who was holding something furry in her hand.

"Couldn't you have waited just a few seconds more?" she hissed at Xena.

The warrior didn't look the slightest bit repentant as she said, "Sorry. But I figured I wasn't the only one who was hungry, so the sooner you get started cooking lunch, the sooner we can eat."

Joxer realized he hadn't had anything more substantial than a fig all day. Still, he'd been quite enjoying what he had been eating.

Xena casually swung the rabbit back and forth as she watched the two of them.

"Can we go back to this later?" Gabrielle whispered.

Joxer nodded happily. "Any time," he promised fervently.

"Oh, goooood," she purred.

Awkwardly getting to his feet, Joxer remembered the pain in his foot, and winced.

"Poor baby, why don't you sit here and rest while I fix lunch?" she offered kindly.

"Okay," he readily agreed. He was a bit tired, he realized.

"Here, put this on," Xena offered, indicating her discarded under-tunic.

"Thanks," Gabrielle said grudgingly, and slipped the garment over her head. It fit a bit loosely, but it was more modest than what she'd been wearing, namely nothing. She took the rabbit from Xena and took it some distance away to prepare it.

Xena raised an eyebrow at Joxer, then walked slowly towards him. As always, she moved gracefully, and looked regal even when stark naked. "Since you're feeling better now, why don't you show me what had Gabby so worked up? I'd really like a demonstration," she added, her voice husky with desire.

Joxer looked over towards Gabrielle, feeling a little guilty already.

Xena turned his head back to her, using one finger against his jaw. "She's busy. I figure it'll take her at least half an hour to fix lunch." Glancing back at the bard, she grinned. "Make that closer to an hour." Staring into Joxer's slightly dazed brown eyes, she added, "So, do you think you can do something to...entertain us both, while we're waiting?"

Considering how well the last bet he had lost had turned out, Joxer was quite willing to take on another challenge.

Gabrielle glanced over her shoulder and was appalled at what she saw.

"Why, that no-good, low-down, two-timing..." She began taking her anger out on the deceased bunny with a savagery that would have given Xena pause, had she seen it.

To add to her frustration, the icky task of preparing the bunny for lunch was proving more difficult than she'd thought.

"There's got to be an easier way..." she said out loud. "Can't somebody help me with this?"

Neither of her companions responded to her question; it was unlikely they even heard her. However, one of the gods must have been amused...

"Hey, little lady, need some help with that?"

Gabrielle gasped and turned to look at the stranger who had spoken to her. She held the knife out threateningly, but the man didn't appear threatened, oddly enough. Turning her head again, she checked to see if Joxer was still with Xena. Indeed he was, very much so. Damn them!

"Here, let me show you how to do it so you can use the...pelt later," he offered, kneeling down next to her.

Gabrielle stared at the stranger, who looked amazingly like Joxer, except for the spectacles he wore. His clothing was very odd indeed, but she stopped worrying about that when he gently took her hand, folding his fingers over hers as he brought the knife back to the rabbit. While she watched in fascination, he removed the pelt and laid it aside.

"You can make a decent bag with that," he commented.

"Uh," Gabrielle managed, watching as he continued the rather repulsive task she hadn't really wanted to perform.

"There, all done," he said. "That didn't take long."

Indeed, she realized the task was finished much sooner than it would have taken her.

"You can start cooking that, and I'll make this into a bag for you."

"Um... Thank you," she said weakly. "But who are you? Why are you helping me like this?"

"Oh, this is sort of a hobby of mine," he explained cheerfully. "My name's Dennis."

"Uh...Gabrielle," she recalled finally. This Dennis looked remarkably like Joxer, but seemed better coordinated. He didn't appear at all interested in harming her or her companions, so she built a fire and started cooking the neatly-prepared rabbit. Before it was even half-way done, Dennis had completed his self-appointed task. He held up the finished product for her inspection.

"Oooh," Gabrielle cooed, "how clever!" It was a useful-looking bag with a flap that came half-way down the front of it, secured by what appeared to be the rabbit's foot inserted through a leather thong formed into a loop. Clever, but also a bit grisly, she thought, but certainly useful.

"Um, thank you very much," she said, looking shyly at Dennis.

"You're welcome!" he said cheerfully. "Glad to help."

She turned away to check on the rabbit.

"You look awfully tense. Let me see if I can relax you a little."

Before she could say anything, strong and skillful fingers began rubbing her shoulders, working the tension out of the muscles.

"Mm, that feels so good!" Gabrielle sighed, rolling her neck.

Dennis gathered her hair and draped it over one shoulder, so he could reach her neck better. After a few minutes Gabrielle thought she would collapse into a boneless heap. He'd started moving his hands lower and lower, and it felt so good...

"Hey, Gabrielle, when's lunch going to be ready? I'm starving!" Xena complained loudly.

Turning quickly, she felt the wonderful hands leave her body. "Huh? Oh, it's almost done. Hey, Xena, I want you to meet..." Looking around, she couldn't find her new friend anywhere. It was as if he had vanished into thin air. "That's bizarre! Where'd he go?"

Xena walked over to her, looking far too smug and self-satisfied for her own good. "What are you talking about? Joxer's right over there."

Gabrielle automatically looked, and wished she hadn't. Joxer was indeed right where she had left him. He appeared to be unconscious again, but he had a blissful smile on his face she could see even from such a distance.

"Hey, this is interesting. Where'd you get it?" Xena asked, picking up the bag. She looked again at the color and the markings. "Say, that's a good use for the pelt. When did you learn to do that?"

"I didn't. Some man named Dennis..." She realized Xena would never believe her. "I think I got some help from one of the gods. Wish I knew which one so I could give proper thanks."

"A god named Dennis? Never heard of him," Xena said dismissively. "So, when's lunch?"

Chapter 14 - A Bit of a Rewind, or Meanwhile Back at the Ranch by Ellie

*Author's Note: Julia was kind enough to tell us in the last segment what Gabrielle got up to with the mysterious god Dennis, however I got to wondering just what left Joxer with such a blissful smile on his face. And then Sockii went and posted a challenge involving just Joxer and Xena...and well I think you see where I'm going with this. Anyway, this scene takes place simultaneously with Dennis' visit and explains why neither Xena nor Joxer were in a position to notice his arrival.*

Between the pounding in his head, and the sharp stabs of pain in his backside and foot, Joxer wasn't exactly feeling up to the challenge of facing Xena one on one. He gave her a wary smile while his battered brain attempted to come up with a way of graciously declining her invitation to show her the same treatment he'd just lavished on Gabrielle. Alas, as per usual, ideas (workable ones at least) weren't forthcoming.

The warrior princess noted his reluctance with her usual keen perception, and could guess at the reasons behind it. Sighing she placed both hands on her hips and muttered, "All right, I can see you're going to be useless to me until we get you fixed up. So why don't you tell me where it hurts?"

Mutely Joxer pointed to his head, posterior, and foot. He looked so miserable that even her battle-hardened heart softened just the teensiest bit. Her frown spread into a rather warm smile. "Ok, c'mere." When he scooted closer she took his foot firmly between her hands and inspected it carefully. The skin hadn't been broken, but she was quite sure it hurt like Hades. Rubbing her hands together to rid them of the last of the rabbit fur as well as to warm them, she then began to rub his extremity in slow, graceful strokes.

At first Joxer wasn't quite sure whether her ministrations were painful or pleasurable; they walked that odd narrow line between the two. Within seconds of her ministrations, though, the ache in his foot began to fade almost as if it had never been there. Startled and pleased, Joxer grinned and asked, "How'd you do that?"

"Pressure points," she returned, working on each toe independently and pausing to dig her fingers into the joints. "A lot of them are located in the foot. Actually some healers believe you can cure almost any ill through foot massage."


She smiled and nodded. "Yup. In fact I bet I can take care of your cheek from here too."

He lay a hand on the side of his face and said, "But it's not sore."

"Not that cheek," Xena growled, moving her hands down to the arch of his foot and continuing her rhythmic rubbing and pressing.

"Oh?" He took a second to process that, then the lightbulb flickered to life. "Oh! Gee, thanks, Xena, I'd really...ooohhh!" Something akin to a bolt of lightning shot up from his foot to his backside spreading a rather delightful warmth along with it.

"How's that feel?"

"That feels great, thanks!" Indeed, if he didn't currently feel as if a harpy were digging its claws into his skull he would've said he'd never felt better in his life.

Abandoning his appendage, Xena gestured for him to turn around. "Scoot back here and let me see what I can for your head." As her hands began their exploration of his cranium she murmured, "It's a good thing you've got a thick skull, Joxer. That could've been a lot worse. You've got a little bump, but I think you'll survive."

"Mmmmm..." was all the wannabe warrior was capable of articulating at the moment. With each second that those magical hands of hers rubbed his pain away he felt his body growing more and more limp. Soon he was leaning almost his entire weight back against her warm, muscular body. Usually that would've made at least one part of his body more than a little rigid, but at the moment he was feeling sated and pain free. In fact, a few more seconds of this and he was pretty sure he'd be snoozing happily.

"Un-uh, don't you fall asleep on me, Joxer." Xena's voice was playfully stern.

As her hands drew away he actually collapsed completely against her for a few seconds. She then sat him back up and growled, "C'mon, I've got plans for you."

Blinking away the pleasant drowsiness he asked, "What do you want me to do?"

"I've seen you demonstrate your skill with that mouth of yours on Gabrielle, now I'd like a more personalized experience. Think you're up to it?"

That was a challenge if ever he'd heard one. Smiling, he turned to face her and pressed his lips to hers. At first the kiss was almost chaste, but he grew quickly bolder, first nibbling on her full bottom lip, then slipping his tongue in to duel with hers. Admittedly if this battle had been waged with swords he'd have quickly found himself defeated, but in their current contest he was more than capable of holding his own. It was an interesting experience to taste the woman so soon after Gabrielle. Where the bard was sweet with the lingering taste of the fruit she'd devoured clinging to tongue and teeth, Xena was a bit...spicier.

While it was tempting to linger, Joxer was well aware that greater pleasures lay in store for both of them elsewhere. He pulled away slowly, allowing himself one last taste before moving down her jaw and the slope of her long neck. The salty taste of her sweat encouraged his oral exploration of her right shoulder and collarbone. Her muscles were starting to quiver slightly as he moved ever lower, it was the only indication of her arousal. That was another interesting difference between the warrior and the bard. Gabrielle trembled and gasped, her responses encouraging and enlightening all at once. Xena was an enigma; it took care and concentration to unfold the mysteries of her body. Another challenge, and one that Joxer felt more than up to.

Tongue and teeth left a tingling trail along her chest as he swooped down to begin the delightful examination of her breasts. He paused over the scar on her right bosom, tracing it with his bottom lip before dipping his head lower. Her nipples were hard long before his talented tongue made its way to first one than the other. As he circle each pinkish red nob in ever smaller circles the warrior arched and groaned softly. Joxer took that as a good sign, and increased his attentions. Finally he drew the nipple into his mouth and clamping down on it, pulled gently. Xena now moaned in earnest.

After repeating the procedure on her other glorious breast, he began to nip the skin along her ribs and belly. She leaned back fully to give him full access. By the time he'd made his way to her belly button, her hips were starting to rock ever so slightly and the groan had become a subtle purr. He decided it was time to turn his attention to a somewhat more tempting location.

Straightening, Joxer repositioned himself, then pulled her thighs up over his shoulders. Xena's bright blue eyes widened just a bit, before falling back into that half-lidded gaze that so reminded him of one of the cats Queen Cleopatra seemed so fond of. By turning his head to either side he could lick and tease the inner slope of each thigh. She was starting to squirm before he'd reached her dark curls, and he grasped her ass firmly before tackling her inviting center.

His strokes were slow and long, lingering on her inner lips then darting up ever so close to the bundle of nerves that was practically screaming for attention. Just the softest of touches, and he would draw away to return to torture her labia. Glancing up he noted with satisfaction that she was biting her bottom lip, eyes closed with desperate concentration. Each stroke increased the trembling that rocked her body, and every time he drew back from the spot she so desperately wanted him to focus on, he heard a soft moan.

Greatly daring, Joxer paused, looked up, and murmured, "I want to hear you say my name."

"Joxerrrrr..." Her tone made his name sound almost like a threat.

A few more seconds of torment, and he pulled away once more. "Now say Joxer the Mighty."

Her eyes snapped open and she glared openly at him. "How about I say, 'Joxer the man who'd better finish what he started before I snap his neck like a twig'?"

"Close enough," he agreed amiably, and went back to work. This time he concentrated on her clit, moving in a circular motion. The tempo increased as her gasps and shudders intensified.

"Yes..oh, yessssss!" she groaned, locking her legs almost painfully around his head and neck.

It was a little difficult to move, but Joxer was determined to succeed and he knew he was incredibly close. The important thing now was not to lose the rhythm he'd established, fortunately rhythm was something he'd always had a knack for. Just when he was certain her thighs were about to cut off his air supply, or crush his skull, he felt her spasm violently around him. Head thrown back in abandon, she clamped her jaw shut tight to hold back the scream that was threatening to escape.

Some men might've been content with a single orgasm, but Joxer the Mighty most certainly wasn't. He continued his merciless assault on her senses, his tempo never faltering, and another orgasm ripped through her hard on the heels of the first. This time she gasped aloud and bucked so hard he nearly dropped her.

He supposed he could've attempted a third, but he was seriously tempting fate already. Sure there were worse ways to end up in Hades than to be accidentally slain by Xena whilst in the throes of passion; but he'd kind of hoped to die in battle if possible. Preferably many years in the future. So he drew away, and lowered her still twitching body to the soft earth almost reverently.

She lay still, panting and spent for several long moments before holding a hand out to Joxer. He moved closer, and as he leaned over their eyes met. Was that respect and gratitude he saw there? Joxer liked to think so. Xena touched his cheek softly, smiled and murmured, "I knew there had to be something you were good at."

He returned the grin, then twisted his head to suck gently on one of her fingers. He pulled it out slowly then peppered each knuckle with lingering kisses. She watched him with a raised eyebrow, then sighed and began to rise reluctantly. Freeing her hand, she pushed him back down on the ground and leaned in to kiss him with an ardor that startled the young man. With a final lick and nibble on his jaw, she mumbled, "I'd better go see how Gabrielle's doing with lunch. I'm suddenly...ravenous!"

Joxer merely nodded and folded his arms behind his head. As Xena moved over to check on her friend, he found his eyes drifting shut and a self-satisfied smirk stretching his lips taut.

Chapter 15 - Let's Do Lunch By Julia Donnelly

Gabrielle sighed. Maybe it was just as well Xena didn't believe her. Perhaps this mystical experience with Dennis was meant to be hers alone. She didn't have to share everything with Xena. It was bad enough she was sharing Joxer...she was having some second thoughts about that.

"Lunch will be ready pretty soon, but I don't know if this is going to be enough for all of us."

"We can send Joxer to get some vegetables of some, on second thought, I'll go," Xena decided. "I think we've found out the extent of his talents, so it might be better not to push it."

Gabrielle didn't say anything, but glared at Xena's back as the warrior walked off.

Fine. Let her think they had plumbed the depths of Joxer's abilities, but she was willing to be there were others just waiting to be discovered. By her, for example, while Xena was off...being Xena.

"Oh, Joxer," she called out cheerfully.

"Huh?" He looked up at her and smiled. "You need something?"

"Well, yes, as a matter of fact I do." She gave him a lascivious grin, then was taken aback by the speed at which he arrived at her side. Okay, include running in his talents, if properly motivated.

"Whatcha need?" he asked eagerly.

"There's not much to do here while I'm waiting for Xena to get back. She's off somewhere getting vegetables."

"Oh, I could have done that," he said, sounding slightly disappointed.

Gabby put a hand on his arm. "Actually, I was hoping you could keep me from getting too bored while we're waiting for the rabbit to cook."

"Sure. No problem." He looked at the neatly spitted and prepared rabbit. "Say, you must have been practicing or something. You did a really nice job on that."

"Um, I had some help. But never mind that now. I noticed you were keeping Xena entertained while I was taking care of this."

"Oh. Yeah," he said cautiously, his eyes darting around as though looking for somewhere to hide. "Well, I couldn't very well turn her down, you know how Xena is..."

"Yes, I know very well how persuasive she can be," the blond said with annoyance. "But I was just thinking there's so much we haven't had time to do yet."

"Oh, we've got lots of time, especially if you don't mind me hanging around with you, so I can--" Realization struck him, right between the eyes and he slapped his forehead, perhaps to shut the image off. "But there's no reason we can't get started, you know, because they say practice makes perfect and--" His eyes widened and he was suddenly silenced as Gabrielle grabbed his face and planted a big wet kiss on him. "Oh," he said with a sigh, when he could breathe again.

"We probably don't have much time before Xena gets back, but maybe we can get started," she suggested, only partially motivated by a desire to annoy her best friend. The rest of her motivation was even more self-serving.

"Sure! Ya got anything particular in mind?" he asked, raising an eyebrow.

Gabby was about to make a suggestion when she saw an unsettling sight. Dennis was back and was grinning at her as though he knew exactly what was in her mind. She gestured for him to go away, but he didn't seem to get the message. As intrigued as she was by him, she was hoping he'd get the message that she was busy. Or about to be busy, at any rate, and didn't want an audience.

"Your friend's coming back this way," he announced helpfully.

"Oh, damn!" Gabrielle muttered.

"What? I didn't even do anything!" Joxer protested.

"Not you. Dennis just said that--"

"Who's Dennis?"

"That guy right over there, just behind you. He looks a lot like you, actually. See him?"

Joxer had craned his neck most of the way around, but didn't see anyone behind him.

"There's no one there, Gabby."

"Yes there is! I can still see him. Dennis, say something to Joxer," she ordered.

He grinned insolently and folded his arms over his chest. She noticed that this time he was wearing a black leather outfit that left very little to the imagination, and suddenly her imagination was working in overdrive.

"Your friends can't see or hear me," he explained with a slight shrug.

"Why not? Oh, I get it! You're a god, right?"

"Who are you talking to?" Joxer asked in exasperation.

He laughed and shook his head. "Let's say I have a...friend who's easily amused, who wanted us to meet."

"Your friend is a god," she surmised.

"So she says," he grimaced. "But I'm not so sure."

"She? Who is it? Aphrodite?"

Joxer had given up trying to make sense of Gabby's side of the conversation, but he wanted to know what, if anything, his favorite goddess had to do with it.

"That's what she says. She's a pretty hot babe, all right, but the goddess of love? I'm not so sure--Hey!" He yelped, and looked indignantly behind him, rubbing his posterior. "Okay, okay. She says hi, by the way."

"This is too bizarre," Gabby decided.

"Hey, let's not let lunch get burned to a crisp!" Joxer rescued the rabbit, which was close to going from well-done to incinerated.

Xena walked into view, still magnificently naked. Dennis stared at her with undisguised lust, and Gabrielle could swear she heard Aphrodite giggling.

"Hel-lo! And who are you?" Xena asked warmly.

Dennis gawked, then managed to spit his name out. "You can see me?"

"Of course. Oh, I get it! You're Gabrielle's friend."

"Who?" he asked, earning a glare from the bard in question. "Oh, uh, yeah."

Joxer was glaring at Xena. He was beginning to wonder if this were yet another joke the gods were playing on him. Just when he'd managed to get Xena's admiration for a little while, she'd found someone else she was obviously more interested in.

"Xena? Do you want something to eat?" Gabrielle asked, as she started serving the rabbit.

"Yeah, I sure do!" the warrior growled. She tossed the vegetables she'd picked in their general direction, and Joxer managed to catch most of them.

"Why don't you two have that," she said, pointing indifferently to the rabbit. "I've found something better, I think."

"I would hope so," Dennis muttered, gazing at the Warrior Princess with fascination bordering on obsession.

They walked off arm in arm, and Joxer glared at Xena's departing form. He was distracted for a moment by the fact that her form looked as enticing when it was departing as when it was arriving, but then he shook the mood off.

"Great! Nothing ever works out for me! Xena's found somebody else already."

"Shhh, it's okay, I'll take your mind off her," Gabrielle offered. She popped a succulent bite of rabbit into his mouth. "I think we'd better have something to keep our energy up. I have a feeling it's going to be a long afternoon."

Joxer's gaze burned with lust as he held a carrot up to her. She licked the tip suggestively, then licked up and down its length, closing her eyes and moaning before biting off a healthy piece.

Aphrodite watched them for a few minutes, then went to find Xena and Dennis. She wanted to see what they were up to. This was going to work out just perfectly. Maybe for once in his life Cupie was right about something.

Chapter 16 - All Tied Up And No Place To Go by Ellie

Gabrielle watched Joxer's face intently as she continued to nibble on the carrot. It was obvious to her that he wanted to say something, or perhaps ask something, but was debating whether or not to do so. She sincerely hoped he never took up card playing seriously; the man's face was easier to read than one of her scrolls.

"Okay, Joxer, what is it?"

He blushed now and dropped his gaze, then chewed his lip apprehensively.


"C'mon, you can tell me." The bard tucked a finger beneath his chin and drew his face up so that their eyes met once more.

"It's...forget it, it's stupid."

Sighing, she cradled his head in her hands and murmured, "Joxer, what is stupid?"

"I was...I just thought that maybe... There's something I'd kinda like to try but I'm not sure..." His words tumbled to a halt and he suddenly seemed to find the campfire absolutely fascinating.

Gabrielle actually laughed. "You mean after all that's happened this afternoon you're afraid to try something else?"

He smiled shyly and bobbed his head.

"Unless it involves farm animals I think you're probably going to hear me say 'yes', so just spit it out, okay?"

"Um...okay." His reticence was both annoying and endearing, but if he didn't start talking soon Gabrielle was pretty sure she was going to wring his neck. Taking a deep breath the warrior blurted out, "Could I tie you up?"

She blinked in surprise. It took her mind a few seconds to work through that one. "Do I still get lunch?"

Joxer's jaw dropped open, then worked silently for several seconds before he managed to sputter, "Y-yeah, s-sure."

Gabrielle nodded decisively. "Well, okay then."

The man seated before her practically glowed with delight as he settled the remains of the carrot back down with its companions. Standing, he went back over to the pile of clothing across the clearing and plucked up the ropes that had so recently held him captive. Gabrielle took advantage of the moment, enjoying a fully unobstructed view of Joxer in all his naked glory. Had she only known what lurked beneath that silly armor before... Ah well, best not to dwell on missed opportunities. She could drink in her fill of him now, every creamy inch of his flesh was open to her inspection.

The bard sighed aloud and admitted to herself that Joxer's body was, in its own right, a work of art. She offered up a silent 'thank you' to Aphrodite. Only the gods could create an ass that perfectly round and taut...not to mention his other attributes.

His dark eyes caught hers and he grinned warmly. Unselfconsciously he did a slow turn, affording her an even better look. "Seen enough?"

It was her turn to smile. "Not nearly."

"Well, too bad," he quipped, making his way back over to her with a definite spring in his step. "'Cause I want to get started and I can't do it posing for you over there." He knelt down beside her and pondered strategy for a moment. "I think I want you sitting up." Joxer moved her slightly forward and gestured for her to fold her legs comfortably beneath her. He then pulled the tunic she'd been wearing up over her head and discarded it without a second glance. Nodding with satisfaction, he crossed her wrists at the base of her spine and secured them lightly. Then he wound the remaining rope around her waist, tucking the end right between her breasts.

Then he stood and walked back in front of her to inspect his handiwork. The bard blushed a bit under his scrutiny. She wondered what he saw when he looked at her like that...and whether she could begin to compare to the beauty that was Xena. Joxer's dark eyes roamed over her figure, at one moment almost clinical in their examination, at the next practically filled with adoration.

"How do I look?" she whispered rather huskily.

"Perfect," Joxer replied simply, not bothering to disguise the abject worship from his features.

Feeling something unfold within her that she'd thought long dead and laid out on the pyre with Perdicas, Gabrielle wasn't sure whether she should laugh or cry. She settled for a warm smile, and was delighted when he returned it.

"Um," she sniffled, "do I get some lunch or are you just going to stare at me all day?"

"Oh, you'll get lunch." Joxer leaned over to place a soft, fleeting kiss on her lips. "I promised, didn't I?"

"That you did...though I'm going to have a hard time eating like this."

"Don't worry, I'll take care of everything." Usually that statement would've made her groan with dismay, but at the moment she was rather inclined to think he'd do just that. Plucking up the abandoned knife Dennis had so recently used, he sliced off several pieces of rabbit. He slipped one between her lips and watched the bard's expression. She closed her eyes and chewed slowly, languidly, as if she were dining on ambrosia rather than a slightly overdone bunny.

Swallowing, she opened her mouth for more, then opened her eyes and glared at him when it wasn't immediately forthcoming. Placing the next piece of meat between his lips, he leaned forward. Immediately understanding his intent, and apparently approving, she did likewise and they met somewhere in the middle.

What ensured was halfway between kissing and dining, and though messy, was undeniably fun. Each ended up with half a piece of rabbit and the lingering taste of one another in their mouths.

Delighted with his inventiveness, the game continued through several more slices, then he snatched up a carrot, split off a piece and repeated the process. Gabrielle nibbled her way up the root extending from his luscious lips and their kiss ended with a distinct "snap". They both giggled and broke apart to finish munching.

With her stomach now sated, the bard pondered what might be next on the agenda. Sure he hadn't trussed her up like this only to teach her a new way to finish a meal. As if sensing her curiosity, Joxer set aside the rabbit and vegetables and murmured, "I think I'm pretty full, how about you?"

Nodding wordlessly, she watched him stand up and move back over to their clothing and travel gear. He leaned down and started rummaging through her bag. A little disconcerted, Gabrielle cried out, "Hey, what are you looking for?"

With a little cry of triumph he straightened and produced the object of his search. The woman's eyes widened.

"A hairbrush?"

"Yup." He moved behind her, knelt, and drew her head back just a bit. "This is something I've always wanted to do to you."

At first she was a little apprehensive, remembering her spanking of his ant-riddled bottom earlier. Then Joxer began to draw the bristled through her hair, carefully working out the snarls from their bath. His hand followed each stroke, making sure to do a thorough job. Gabrielle was in Elysium. No one had ever done this to her before. Sure, her mother had combed her hair in a gentle, maternal fashion, and Xena had offered to help remove burrs and snarls in her own brusque fashion. But this was so...intimate.

"Gods, that feels good," she moaned.

"You like that, huh?"


He smiled at the purred response and swung her hair around to drape it over one shoulder. She made a slightly disappointed sound before gasping with surprise as he gently drew the soft, horsehair bristles over her skin. Each one danced and skipped over her sensitive back raising gooseflesh wherever it trailed. He didn't confine himself to her back, rather began to run the brush up and down each arm, then swooped around to trace patterns over her exposed breasts.

Gabrielle's eyes were tightly shut, not because the unexpected sensation was necessarily painful, rather that she wanted to concentrate solely on what she was experiencing. The feelings were both odd and arousing at once, and of course wildly unfamiliar. Between what Joxer was doing with that brush, and the comforting warmth of the ropes, the bard's head was positively spinning. Perhaps that was why she was so shocked when the sensations abruptly stopped.

If her eyelids weren't suddenly so heavy, she'd have definitely turned to watch what Joxer was up to. Instead she sat swaying slightly, waiting for his next idea. She didn't have long to wait. A light touch of an entirely different kind caressed her cheek.

Before she could get a good look at the toy he'd decided to use next, Joxer's long, slender hand covered his eyes. "No peeking," he mumbled and waited for her to comply. Relaxing once more she let her eyelids droop and he pulled his hand away. Then the sensations started in earnest.

It was smooth and so unbelievable soft, sliding over her shoulders and back. Gabrielle frowned slightly and attempted to discern just what he was using. Where the brush traced a lingering path of warm pleasure/pain, this was cool, soothing. Only when the object in question returned to her face and she distinctly felt several strands of fur touch her nose did she cry out, "It's the rabbit skin bag!"

Joxer grinned and kissed the top of her head. "Good guess. Now, ready for another game?"

She nodded eagerly.

"Okay, I'll ask you a question and if you answer it right you get to tell me where this," he paused to indicate the furry bag, "goes next."

"Right, I'm ready."

He smirked and moved around to face her. "All right, what was the name of the princess my ahem 'alter ego' seduced?"

"Easy," she replied smugly, "Illeandra."

"Right again. Okay, where would you like me to touch you?"

"Mmm, run it along my thighs...the insides."

He nodded almost somberly and complied, drawing the pelt along the inside of each of her legs. Gabrielle groaned as it set her thighs to tingling almost unbearably. When Joxer stopped abruptly her emerald eyes flashed open and she growled, "Hey!"

"Next question. Sing me a verse of my song."

Her head tilted to the side. "Any verse?"

"Any verse."

"Umm..." Gabrielle felt a slight twinge of panic. This should be easy, she'd heard the thing enough times to sing it in her sleep. Why was she blanking now? "Ah, 'Joxer the Mighty...'" She hummed a few bars hoping the words would pop into her head. Nothing.


Glaring she muttered, "Give me a second, okay?"

Joxer just grinned, and began to draw the rabbit skin down her calves and across her feet. The bard yelped and pulled away. "Just trying to give you a little incentive."

Gabrielle simply glowered and continued to wrack her brain. "Okay, 'Joxer the Mighty'...he's very...tidy!" The excitement of getting another line was quickly diminished when once again she drew a blank. "Ummm..."

He began to trace a line up her side with the rabbit skin pouch, causing her to squeal and giggle. "Oooh, you're ticklish too."

"Yes, yes I am, now cut it out!" Instead he continued his assault, varying the side he attacked so she could never fully squirm out of his reach. "Joxer!" she cried, "this isn't fair!"

"Fair? I just asked you a simple was a gimme...and you can't answer it. Can ya?"

"I can...I just...stop it!"

"Okay, I'll give you a hint." He leaned forward and breathed into her ear, "Everyone admires him..."

She brightened immediately. "He's so handsome it's a sin!"

"When things get grim..."

"Um... 'He'll take it on the chin'?"

"If you're in jeopardy, caused by the enemy..."


Joxer continued, "Don't call the cavalry, there's a better remedy..."

Gabrielle chimed in, "Although he doesn't work for free!"

"He's every man's trusty..."

"He's every woman's fantasy," the bard sang with slightly more emphasis than he'd expected.

"Plus he's good company... He's Joxer," they both chorused, "Joxer the Mighty!"

Chapter 17 - All Good Things Must Come To An End by Julia Donnelly

Xena was enjoying Dennis' attention. It was a bit strange being with a man who looked so much like Joxer, yet was so sure of himself. Whoever he was, wherever he came from, Xena wasn't going to look a gift horse in the mouth. If the gods had sent him for some reason, she for one was grateful.

Dennis looked up into her blue eyes. "Am I boring you?" he asked softly, his voice containing an edge of sarcasm.

Xena almost blushed. "Oh, no. I'm sorry. I was just thinking how happy I am to have met you."

He quirked one eyebrow up, then continued laving her breast. Her skin was magnificent, supple and surprisingly soft for a warrior. Her arms and legs were tanned, while her torso remained white, but that was okay. He kind of liked the contrast. The way she writhed beneath him was very stimulating, and he noted that her skin was very sensitive. He couldn't get enough of touching her, or tasting her.

Xena moaned aloud, closing her eyes. This Dennis was very, very good. Someone had obviously trained him well in the bedroom arts. She wondered, if he truly were a gift from the gods, if she could keep him. He looked strong enough to be a warrior, and it might be good to have another strong sword arm on their side. Not to mention it might be very beneficial for Joxer to have a man around that he could look up to and learn from. She just took it for granted they would get along well.

"Ooh, yeah, right there," she instructed in a hoarse whisper.

Dennis continued pleasuring her with dexterous fingers and a nimble tongue. She noticed that he seemed to be enjoying her body in much the same way a man might admire a good sword, or a new chariot.


Aphrodite giggled, and poked Cupid in the side. "You were right, this is perfect! Where'd you find this guy?"

Cupid shook his head. "You wouldn't believe what I had to go through to get him. That's the last time I ask Ares for one of his guys."

She wrinkled her nose. "Dennis is one of his? Grody!"

"Not exactly," her son explained hesitantly. "He's from the future, and he's not a warrior. He's more of an assassin, who doesn't need to be paid for his work."

The goddess of love looked at him askance. "He kills people for the fun of it?"

"Pretty much. I'm gonna have to make sure Xena stays in one piece. I don't think he's admiring her just for her feminine charms."


He shrugged. "Maybe Xena can do her conversion thing on him, turn him into a good guy. Might take some time, but if she thought she could change Draco, maybe..."

"Xena's not my favorite person," Aphrodite admitted, "but I kind of like having her around."

"Don't worry, Dennis isn't going to kill her." Cupid hoped he was telling the truth.


Ares frowned as he watched the scene before him. Dennis' technique wasn't bad, though his thoughts were a million miles away from what he was doing. No, he couldn't be allowed to wear Xena. She deserved better than that. He'd need to have a talk with the boy, privately, to make sure he understood Xena was off-limits as a clothing option.


Xena turned the tables on Dennis, quite literally, flipping him over onto the ground and straddling him. His expression went from alarm to a playful acceptance, though she saw something in his eyes that made her draw back.

"Go on," he encouraged her. "What did you have in mind?"

"This, for starters." With that she engulfed his hard member with her mouth, making him cry out in need and pleasure.

"Oh, yeah," Dennis sighed, thrashing his hips under Xena's erotic assault.

"Take it easy on him, honey, if you want him to last."

Xena absolutely hated being interrupted when her mouth was full. She opened her eyes and glared up at the buxom goddess of love. Her gaze was eloquent.

"Ooh, such hostility, Xena! And after all I've done for you!"

It was obvious Dennis wasn't aware of the goddess's presence. Either that or the man had the single-mindedness of a satyr. Quite possibly the latter, she decided.

"You'd better enjoy him while you've got him." Aphrodite looked at Dennis with undisguised lust. "I think we're gonna have to send him back."

Xena tightened her grip on Dennis' hips and growled possessively.

Dennis shuddered and gasped.

Aphrodite giggled and watched for a moment. When Dennis was still and quiet, she turned to Xena, who was licking her lips contentedly.

"Seriously, hon, I'm not sure he's the right man for you. I thought my little Cupie had a great idea goin' there, for a change, but I think he overestimated your ability to keep Dennis here in line."

"What?" the warrior protested. "You gave him to me, now you're tryin' to take him away? I don't think so!"

"Xena? Who are you talking to?" Dennis asked. He sat up and adjusted his clothing.

With a put-upon sigh, the goddess revealed herself in all her glory. Well, most of it, except for what her gauzy pink dress covered.

"Oh, you!" Dennis grinned. "Hey, thanks!"

"Sorry, sweet cheeks, but I think you're gonna have to go back. Besides, if you get the Warrior Babe knocked up..." Aphrodite shuddered delicately. "That child would grow up to destroy the world as we know it. Can't have that, can we?"

"But, wait!" Dennis wailed, as Aphrodite snapped her fingers. He disappeared and a horrified Xena turned on the goddess.

"What did you go and do that for? We didn't get a chance to do everything I wanted to do!"

The golden-haired goddess shrugged. "Not my call. Zeus was getting royally ticked about us messing with future time-lines and all that, so we had to put a stop to it. But the good news is my boy Joxer and the irritating little blonde are finally together, and that makes my Cupie happy."

Xena rolled her eyes. "And what about me? I wouldn't have minded keeping Dennis around, ya know!"

"Aw, I know you liked him. Who wouldn't? But trust me, hon, he'd have turned on you eventually."

"But there's just something about him..." Xena whined. "He just kinda got under my skin."

"Blech! I am so outta here!" A golden dazzle replaced the goddess.

Xena mumbled curses against the gods and anyone who would listen as she made her way back to her companions.


"Yes! Yes! Yes!" Gabrielle shrieked at the top of her lungs.

Xena's eyes widened at the scene taking place before her. Well, one couldn't say that Joxer was least at the moment. In fact, Xena had never seen a man stay in that particular position for more than 30 seconds, yet Joxer the Mighty was apparently quite comfortable with it. And Gabrielle...well, she had never seen the bard look quite so ecstatic before.

Xena quietly sidled up to them and tried an unusual move of her own. It took Joxer by surprise, but he didn't object. Gabrielle didn't seem to care that Xena had joined them, and probably wouldn't have noticed even if Ares had joined them.

Which the god was certainly tempted to do, but for the moment he was content to just watch them.

"I dunno, Mom. I still think the thing with Dennis coulda worked out," the god of love complained. "Xena's done some amazing things before. She might have turned him around."

Ares shook his head, though his opinion hadn't been asked. "Maybe, but it would have taken years. Besides, I kinda like seeing the three of them together. I wouldn't have liked seeing Dennis dressed in Xena."

"Ewwwwwwww, grody! Why do you have to keep talking about that?" 'Dite complained. "Now Dennis dressed as Xena, that I wouldn't mind seeing."

While the two gods mimed retching, the feisty goddess watched the trio writhing around on the forest floor. "You gotta admit, they look good together, don't they?"

The gods grudgingly admitted they sorta did.

"We done good. You two can stay here and make sure these three stay together. I've got an orgy in Corinth to get to! Don't want 'em to get started without me!"


Three exhausted but extremely happy companions rested in a tangled heap.

"Ohhhh," Xena groaned as she sat up. "We'd better get going. I bet Argo's been waiting for hours."

Joxer knew better than to complain that Argo was just a horse.

"Say, where's Dennis?" Gabrielle asked, looking around curiously for the handsome stranger.

"Oh, come on! You don't still expect me to fall for that 'invisible guy' routine, do you?"

Xena raised an eyebrow. "Guess we can't fool you, huh, Jox?"

He muttered something about not being born yesterday while Xena smirked at Gabrielle. "Tell you later," she mouthed, not wanting to upset her sensitive warrior chum. Honestly, male egos could be so fragile, she reflected.

"Come on, let's go," Gabrielle sighed, allowing Joxer to help her up. As she pulled him into a warm embrace, Xena watched tolerantly.

"Let's get our stuff together and get dressed. We can get to the next town by nightfall if we hurry. I don't know about you two, but I'm looking forward to a hot bath and a nice feather bed."

"And a good, hot meal!" the bard chimed in.

"Make that a really big bed," Joxer added. When the two women looked at him with bemusement, he explained, "I move around a lot at night."

"We'll keep you right where we want you," Xena half-promised, half-threatened. She and Gabrielle exchanged a knowing look.

Joxer gulped, afraid he'd bitten off more than he could chew. Then again, he'd always liked challenges, especially ones that gave him an opportunity to rise to the occasion.

The three companions walked out of the clearing, two of them loudly singing "Joxer The Mighty" while the third resigned herself to learning every verse, whether she wanted to or not. Then again, there were compensations...

The End

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