The characters of Xena, Gabrielle, Argo, Cyane, Ephiny etc. are owned by MCA/Universal/Renaissance Pictures. I only borrowed them to tell a story. No infringement was intended. The rest of the story is mine and I hold the copyright to it. Do not use any part of this story without my permission.
Violence Disclaimer: This story depicts scenes of violence and/or their aftermath. Readers who are disturbed by its depiction may wish to read something other than this story.
Love/Sex Disclaimer: This story depicts a love/sexual relationship between two consenting adult women. If you are under 18 years of age or this type of story is illegal in the state or country in which you live, please do not read it. If depictions of this nature disturb you, you may wish to read something other than this story.
This story contains a relationship between Xena and a lost love. Gabrielle is in it, but they are best friends only.
You can find more stories by Mythe at Mythe's Lair
Send feedback to Mythe_bgon@hotmail.com
Copyright 1998 by Mythe. All rights reserved.
A group of young Amazons were sparring in front of their mighty Queen Cyane, whose brown eyes studied their every move for any mistakes. "Sasha, keep eye contact!" she yelled, shaking her head. She sat down in her throne and uttered under her breath, "She's going to get knocked down . . . if she doesn't pay attention."
Sasha turned and replied, "Yes, my Queen!" She didn't realize that her opponent was taking this advantage and had swiped her legs out from beneath her. She landed hard on her back winded and embarrassed.
Cyane grinned, running her strong fingers through her long blond hair. "Great job, Rebecca!" she acknowledged to the winner.
"They're raw, but they have spirit..." Xena revealed, taking a sip of her port. Then she handed another wooden mug to Cyane.
"They certainly do," Cyane agreed, taking the mug. "Thank you."
Xena continued to watch these young warriors spar. "Reminds me of my first sparring session," she disclosed. "My body was covered with cuts and bruises for days!"
"Yep..." Cyane agreed. "I felt that pain too."
A young Ninja, dressed all in black, flew out from the foliage and landed in the middle of the sparring. The mysterious person commenced a brutal assault upon the young Amazons. Seconds later, everyone was on the ground moaning and groaning. They laid there stunned and confused; at this mass of unfettered slaughter upon them.
Xena was in awe at this change of events and gasped, "Who's that warrior?" She instinctually reached for her sword's hilt.
A sly smirk creep upon Cyane's beautiful face and replied, "A very good friend..."
"Your friend's very good!" Xena asserted, taking another sip.
Cyane rose to her feet and remarked, "The very best..."
After glancing at the fallen Amazons, the Stranger finally turned to their Queen. "They're in training I presume?" the dark one inquired, bowing to her.
"Of course..." Cyane replied, taking another sip. She gazed into the Stranger's intense brown eyes and felt a kindred spirit arise.
"By the Gods!" the Stranger sighed. "Good, because I would have to retrain them the right way!" The warrior took off the dark mask. Revealing a tanned, attractive young woman with short black hair. Her strong warrior demeanor changed as a mischievous smile erupted. Sierra approached her and greeted, "It's been awhile, Cyane..."
"Too long!" Cyane said, hugging her and whispered, "I've missed you..." They kissed each other's cheek ever so gently.
"Me too..." Sierra acknowledged, noticing a tall beautiful woman to her friend's left.
Xena inquired, "Well...Cyane, aren't you going to introduce me to your friend?"
"Uh...sorry..." Cyane caught within the moment and grinned, "Xena, this is Sierra...Sierra this is Xena."
Xena held out her hand, "Nice to meet you, Sierra."
"Hello," Sierra smiled and firmly shook her hand. "It's nice to meet you too."
"Your entrance was stunning!" Xena exclaimed. "Are you an Amazon?"
"Why thank you!" Sierra replied. "You could say that..."
Cyane elaborated further, "Xena, Sierra's the Queen of all the Amazon tribes."
Xena raised a brow and inquired, "There's a rank that high?" She turned to Sierra, who nodded in agreement.
"Her mother is the goddess herself, Artemis..." Cyane unveiled.
"Artemis?" Xena repeated and chugged the rest of her port.
"Yep..." Sierra acknowledged. "So, is there any more port?"
The young Amazons got to their feet and began whispering amongst themselves. They dusted themselves off and picked up their staffs. "She's the Goddess's daughter?" one inquired to another.
Another shrugged, "I guess so..."
"She's dressed funny!" another replied back.
A brunette Amazon came up from behind and startled the young woman, "You should hold your tongue."
A burly Amazon stepped up to the young girl and grumbled, "She's our Queen!" She then proceeded to intimidate the young creature by flexing her chest muscles.
Another Amazon with long sandy blond hair stood next to her and sighed, "You guys have a lot to learn..."
Aro growled out, "We need to teach them the meaning of respect!"
The group of youths stepped back and huddled together for support. Fearing the wrath of the older Amazons they turned to Sasha as their newly appointed leader and spokesperson. "Hey!" she shouted. "We didn't mean anything about..."
Cyane overheard this whole conversation, realizing that her friends had heard it also. "SHOW OUR QUEEN SOME RESPECT!"
The older and wiser Amazons fell to one knee, bowing their heads to their Queens. They suddenly made a fist with their right hand and hit their chest. Then raised it to their Queens in respect. The younger ones were in awe at this sight and followed suit. Everyone silently awaited the next command from her Queen.
"About time..." Cyane grumbled, turning to her guests. "By the gods!" Sierra and Xena silently smiled toward her. "They're ready, Sierra..."
Xena glanced over at the awaiting Amazons. "I guess so..."
The mischievous smile formed upon Sierra's face, "All right..." She stepped forward, addressing her sisters. "Hello, fellow Amazons!"
"Greetings, my Queen!" everyone replied back.
"All I ask is that you all train hard, do your best at everything and learn from one another," she declared. "I've noticed that they're some new faces in this tribe," she revealed, grinning. "I hope your not hurt too bad!"
Everyone glanced over at them and smiled too. The young ones turned to one another, blushing from embarrassment. They shrugged and wondered what they should do. Sasha turned to her fellow Amazons and spoke up, "My Queen, you didn't!"
Sierra replied, "Good...that was a lesson in humility!" She looked over them and then over at her friends. "I am here to check up on your training," she informed and began to pace.
Cyane whispered to Xena, "I love this part..."
"Oh really," Xena responded as she lifted the mug to her lips.
"I am Artemis's daughter, which means I am the warrior that you all strive to be," Sierra decreed. "I'm a person who you don't want to cross. Because I can easily take out everyone of you!" she explained, elaborating further, "See, I have the skills do so...I've fought fierce armies and won!" Turning to them and saluted them back. "Now, stand my sisters!" She turned to leave and mumbled, "I hate these formal things..." Remembered something and added, "Oh, by the way...I have excellent hearing."
Cyane cheered, "Go, girl!"
"Is it true that she fought against an army?" Xena inquired.
Cyane nodded, "Yes, four winters ago."
"But, how?" Xena gasped. She half heartily believed that one person could really do that. By some chance, if she could accomplish this...I must gain this knowledge.
Cyane elaborated, "Ares had an fierce army called the Death lords. Their goal was to destroy anything that got into their way. Anyway, Ares promised them power and wealth. If they'd destroy our tribe, that is. Artemis finally stepped in and brought Sierra to us." Taking a sip from her port and continued, "Artemis came to us and warned us not to help her daughter in this battle."
Xena gasped, raising a brow, "She told you not to fight?"
"Yes," Cyane nodded and continued, "She gave Sierra her enchanted bow, a sword and a chakram. This was to be Sierra's coming of age test. She was to fight them herself in order to be the Queen of all the nations."
"What's a chakram?"
"It's a round disk that can bounce off of objects and come back to you," she enlightened. "It can slice through just about anything, even enchanted metals."
"What a weapon..."
"Sierra changed more than half the army into the trees, creating the forest of shadow. She killed the rest with the chakram and her sword. When she was done fighting the soldiers, she finally had to fight Ares' best warlord, Horede. He was a seven-foot Goliath who had been blessed by Ares himself, with the power and strength of ten men. He was also given enchanted armor that only a few mortals would ever wear. After hours of intense battle, Sierra noticed an opening in his armor. She took the opportunity to throw the chakram at him, not really knowing if it would damage his armor or not."
Sierra silently walked up to them and overheard Cyane telling a story. "Hum...I assume you're telling Xena of my famous battle."
Cyane nodded, "Of course!" She patted Sierra on the back, "I'm almost done..."
"Do tell," Xena implored.
"The chakram sliced through his armor as if it was paper. It gutted him in a second as he stood in horror. All he could do was stare at me as I severed his head from his shoulders," Sierra revealed with a sigh, taking a big gulp from her port. The very scene replays within her mind's eye as if was just yesterday. That was turning point for me.
Cyane and Xena were in awe at the way she retold the final fatal moments. They turned to one another and shrugged. "Sierra?" Cyane called. "Are you all right?"
Sierra snapped back from the past, glancing over to her. "Yeah...I was just thinking."
"About what?" Cyane probed further.
"That it was a turning point in my life," she declared.
"I'd say so!" Xena acknowledged with a hard pat to Sierra's back. "Let's get some more port!"
FOURTEEN WINTERS LATER
Two women were sleeping next to a slowly dying fire. They're wrapped tightly in their furs, keeping the cold wind at bay.
Suddenly, Xena awoke from her restless visions. She instinctively reached for her sword, realizing that everything's all right and grumbled, "A dream..." She noticed the fire was going out, picks up a log and tossed it into the fire. Then she observed the flames growing brighter and stronger.
Gabrielle groaned, turning gently over. Her peaceful dreams created a smile on her innocent face.
Xena turned to her friend, "Sleep well, little one." Satisfied that all was right, she laid back down to sleep as the visions return.
Cyane stifled a yawn and enlightened, "I'm going to bed guys,"
"Goodnight, Cyane..." Xena gestured, turning all her attention to Sierra.
Sierra got up and hugged her, "Goodnight."
"I'll see you two later," Cyane waved as she was engulfed into the darkness.
"Well..." Xena sighed, taking another drink. "I guess we're the night owls."
Sierra sat back down and agreed, "I guess so!" She took off her shirt, revealing a bra-like top. A very toned and tanned chest was underneath. "I hope you don't mind," she inquired, stretching her muscles. She then made herself comfortable, leaned back and took another sip.
"Uh..." Xena gasped, lusting eyes explored her late night companion's body. "No, not at all..." Physically fit women have always attracted me. Especially, being around all these fine Amazons. I've had a hard time controlling my urges and needs. I can't get involved with them...oh...but the hunger.
"So, Xena are you going to stay here or at your other camp?"
Xena came back to her senses, for a moment and replied, "Uh...I'd like to stay here, if you don't mind."
"Good . . . " she acknowledged, finishing her port. "Do you need another?"
"Okay," Xena responded, chugging the rest of her drink and handing the mug to her.
"I'll be back," Sierra advised, disappearing into the darkness.
"By the gods..." Xena sighed and ran her fingers through her long hair. "I'm falling for an Amazon Queen, that's just great..." she whispered, trying to gain control, "Get a grip Warrior Princess..." She stood up and began to pace. "People like me don't fall in love," she reminded herself, "I've got to focus..." Her heart wasn't listening to her as it continued to beat at the thought of this amazing woman.
Standing in the shadows was Sierra. She was watching this warrior fight a losing battle within herself. A smile crept upon her loving face at the thought of all this. She's falling for you know... She silently headed towards her with the full mugs.
"She's coming back..." Xena remembered, sitting back down. "Get a hold of yourself."
Sierra crept up from behind, holding the mug out. "Here you go."
This unexpected presence startled her. "Ah!" she blurted out, taking a breath and asked, "How?"
"Oh, sorry..." she apologized with a smile, "It's my training." She handed her the mug, "There you go."
"Thanks," Xena took it and drank from it.
This should be fun... Sierra sat down next to her and inquired, "So, did I startle you?"
"Yeah, you can say that..." Xena replied abruptly. Calm down... "So, tell me about yourself."
"Well, I've been training as a warrior ever since I can remember," Sierra revealed. "I've traveled around the world for the teachings of the great ones." Taking another sip and continued on, "I've mastered many arts and the art of war."
Xena's eyes wondered over Sierra's body, noticing the Ninjisu uniform and quizzed, "You're a Ninja?"
"You can say that," she disclosed with a smile, "Why?"
"I remember fighting Ninjas when I was..." Xena held her tongue, not wanting to reveal her past.
Sierra studied her every move, finally reading the answer in her blue eyes and finished, "Conquering foreign lands."
"But, how?" Xena gasped at this feat of mind reading, trying to block her thoughts from Sierra. "You're reading my mind!"
"No, I can't read minds . . . " Sierra shook her head and laughed. "I can see it in your eyes, though."
Disbelieving this, Xena scoffed at the idea, "Yeah, right!" She turned to watch the fire engulfing the wood and inquired, "So, are you and Cyane an item?"
"I noticed the way Cyane was looking at you," Xena responded. "She always had her eye on you."
"It was a while ago..." she glanced into the fire. "Why?"
Xena retorted, "I just wanted to know..."
"Anyway, it's true..." she reached over, gently turning Xena's face toward hers. "Your eyes are the doorways to your soul. You can read anyone if you just look," Sierra proclaimed, staring into them again. A feeling of peace and love overwhelmed my soul . . . a part that I haven't felt in a long time. It was as though there was a bond of sorts that connected them. "I didn't know..." she revealed.
Xena read this too in her brown eyes; everything she needed was right in front of her. My plans for conquering the world meant nothing at this moment. I finally let myself go... She leaned over and softly kissed Sierra's luscious lips. The fire within me ignited as a burst of passion overwhelmed all my senses.
The gentle kiss became one of fiery passion as their tongues explored one another. Their hands caressed each other's faces and hair; pushing each other closer as it grew stronger and rougher.
"Hold on," Sierra gasped, pulling away from her and took a much-needed breath.
"But...I thought," Xena sighed. My heart broke at the thought of losing this feeling.
Sierra realized what she may thought and objected, "No, it's not that . . . I had to breathe!"
"Good!" Xena expressed as tears of joy fell from her eyes.
Sierra noticed the tears, wiping them from her eyes. "I made the Warrior Princess cry," she whispered. "What will everyone think?"
Pulling Sierra close to her and retorted, "I don't care what they think..." She kissed her cheek, gently licking a trail to her ear and whispered, "Only what you think." Then she began kissing her earlobe, slightly nibbling it. My soul's desire for this woman overwhelms my entire being.
"XENA!" Gabrielle shouted, shaking her friend awake. "Come on, wake up!"
Losing my best friend is not on my agenda this morning. Xena never over sleeps, nor would she let me do this. "Please, don't be dead!" she begged.
"I'm not dead, Gabrielle..." Xena grumbled, rubbing her eyes.
"Xena!" Gabrielle praised, hugging her. "Thank the gods!"
"All right...all right," Xena sighed. "Why don't you get the fire going and I'll get us some breakfast." She slowly got to her feet and noticed that it's almost afternoon. I never sleep this late! What's going on?
She headed toward a small lake that's just beyond those trees. "We'll have fish today," she declared, stopping at the lake's edge and removing her leathers. She then jumped into the cold lake and swam a bit. She dived and resurfaced with two trout, which she easily tosses to the lake's bank. They flopped around, wanting to get back in the water. "Oh, no you don't!" she warned, climbing out of the lake.
Meanwhile, Gabrielle's packing up their gear and getting ready. Xena kept calling out Sierra's name...I kept waking up to it. "I wonder who this Sierra person is?"
Xena reached their camp just in time to hear Gabrielle's question. How does she know Sierra's name? She walked over to Gabrielle, handing her the gutted fishes. "Breakfast is served," she announced with a smile.
"Great..." Gabrielle grinned back, taking the fish over to the fire. "Xena, I have question..."
"Sierra, was a very close friend..." replied Xena. Who took a deep breath and sat down. I can't believe I'm talking about this. I've closed that door for some time now. My heart still aches at the thought.
"Xena?" Gabrielle called out to her best friend. "If you're not ready to talk, then I'll understand."
Xena responded, "No...I'm ready to it's just..." She took another deep breath, exhaling and expressed, "I haven't talked about this in over four winters now."
I've rarely seen this side of Xena...I just want to hold her and tell her that it's all right. But, something tells me that she needs to let this out. "Are you all right?" she worriedly inquired.
Xena nodded and began her story...
MANY MOONS LATER
Sierra and Xena were sparring in the early morning's rays. They're blocking each other's blows and kicks with ease. Suddenly, Xena attempted a roundhouse kick to Sierra's face.
"I don't think so..." Sierra grinned, observing this and reacted with a quick leg swipe.
Xena fell flat on her back, winded and out of breath. "How did you know?"
"I kept eye contact, until you looked down..." she revealed, holding out her hand. "Let's try this again."
"All right..." Xena sighed, grabbing her hand and pulling her down on top of her. Her arms wrapped tightly around Sierra's waist and stated, "What are going to do now?"
Sierra held her close, "This..." She kissed her lover ever so gently, kissing a trail toward her neck. This drives her insane!
"By the gods!" Xena expressed, running her fingers through her lover's hair. "You're driving me crazy..."
The thunderous roaring of horses was heard all round them along with the yelling and shouting. "KILL EVERYONE!" a loud bellowing voice ordered.
Cyane roared, "AMAZONS, ATTACK!"
"What's going on?" Xena turned towards her voice.
Sierra got up, helping her up too. "A battle..." she replied, "Let's go!"
Cyane was beating the Tartarus out of a soldier. She looked over, noticing Sierra and Xena. "DEATH LORD SOLDIERS!"
The other Amazons were in their own battles. They were doing just find and didn't need any help. Even the young ones kept up the fight.
Sierra scanned the battle looking for their leader, noticing him on his mighty steed and decreed, "I'm going after him!"
Xena called out to her, "Wait!" She noticed the leader's second was speeding towards Sierra and grumbled, "Oh, no you don't..." She leapt into the air, knocking him off his horse, unsheathed her sword and flipped it around in her hand.
Sierra completed a flying kick, which knocked him from his saddle. She landed on her feet, pulling out her sword and recognizing her opponent. She greeted him, "Well, well its Horede's little brother..." she guessed, "Deserter?"
"Beserter!" he roared, swinging his sword at her head.
She easily blocked the blow and replied, "Now...now don't get irate!" Then she delivered a punch to his gut.
"NO!" Beserter groaned, doubling over and is kneed in the face. He then flew back, landing hard on his back.
Sierra glanced over, noticing that Xena missed a block and was about to be stabbed through. "NO!" she yelled, throwing her chakram at him. It slit his throat, a soldier's behind him and rested in the chest of another.
Xena smiled, pulling the chakram from the dead warrior's chest and recited, "Deadly..." She turned toward Sierra's direction and realized that a sword was plunged into her lover's stomach. "NO!" she bellowed and ran to her side.
Sierra glanced down; Beserter's sword was inside her to its hilt. "No..." she groaned and backhanded him.
Beserter flew back a step or two, pulling with him his sword from her body. "I've avenged your death, brother!" he roared, raising his arms to the sky, in victory. He looked over at his dying victim and taunted, "I bet you didn't expect that!"
Xena came up behind him and used the chakram to slit his throat. "I bet you didn't either," she remarked as he fell to the ground dead.
Sierra fell to her knees in the dirt and sighed, "I took my eyes..."
Xena held her fallen lover close to her and assured her, "It's going to be all right, Sierra." Her heart was dying along with her lover. Tears were flowing from her eyes as she comforted her, "Sierra, you're going to be fine..." She covered her mortal wound, trying to stop the bleeding and decreed with utter hopelessness, "I'm not going let you die!"
Sierra coughed up some blood and whispered, "Xena, take the chakram..."
"No...you'll be all right!"
She took a shallow breath, "It belongs to you..." Pain erupted through her entire body as it started to shut itself down.
Realizing her lover was now dying she pleaded, "Please...by the gods don't you dare leave me!"
"I love you, Xena..." She caressed her lover's face, smearing her blood on Xena's beautiful face.
Xena began to cry and whispered back, "I love you too, Sierra..." She leaned over and kissed her on the lips. "You're my light..." she revealed, "my soul mate..." Sierra's body went limp and she closed her eyes one final time. Xena held Sierra's body close to hers and wailed, "NO!" she broke down and wept, "PLEASE . . . No...No..."
A burst of white light appeared in front of Xena. Within a moment, it changed into Artemis. Her sadden eyes look down upon her fallen daughter. "Sierra...no..." she whispered, glancing over at Xena. "Can I have my little girl?"
Xena nodded, handing her to Artemis and expressed, "I loved her with all my heart and soul..."
"I know..." she acknowledged with a loving smile. She wrapped her loving arms around her fallen daughter and they both disappear.
Xena sat there looking at her hands, which were covered in her soul mate's blood. "Sierra...no..." she bellowed out as tears continued to flow from her eyes.
Xena was tearing up as she let her emotions free. "That's when I turned."
Gabrielle's heart broke at her loss. "Xena, I'm so sorry..." she apologized, "I didn't mean to-"
Xena interrupted, "It's all right." My heart feels a little better than before... "I needed to let it out," she acknowledged. A small smile formed on her face as she wiped the tears from her eyes.
Gabrielle hugged her, "Xena, you amaze me everyday!"
"What do you mean?"
"Under that warrior exterior..." she paused and continued, "There's wonderful woman with heart of gold."
"Gabrielle..." Xena retorted and gently elbowed her.
"Face it, I'm right..." she insisted and elbowed her back.
"You're right!" Xena affirmed, rising to her feet. "We should leave now, maybe we'll make it there before dark."
LATER THAT DAY
"The end," Gabrielle finished, looking over at her walking companion.
"That was good, Gabrielle..." Xena praised with a gentle smile. "The town is just over that hill."
"Good, I'm starving!" Gabrielle decreed, rubbing her growling stomach.
A woman's screams were heard. "LEAVE US ALONE!" she shouted. "CLANG!" the sound of a frying pan hitting a helmet was heard also.
A male voice begged, "We have nothing!"
"Come on, Gabrielle!" Xena yelled, running toward the commotion.
"I'm right behind you!"
There are twenty heavily armored soldiers beating five traveling villagers.
"Give us all your valuables!" the leader ordered, backhanding one of the villagers. Getting annoyed at their lack of values and ordered, "Kill them all!"
"I don't think so!" Xena decreed, flipping into the air. "YIYIYIYIYIYI!" she cried out and landed in the middle of the horde. She then began her assault upon them knocking them one by one down.
Gabrielle reached the scene and was ambushed by two sword-wielding soldiers. They were easily succumbed by her staff and were knock to the ground. A lone soldier snuck up on her and struck her in the back, with his spear.
The soldier's blow knocked Gabrielle's staff from her hands as she fell to the ground. She instantly got back to her feet and into another fighting stance. Her staff was thrown into the awaiting hands of an on-coming soldier. He used her weapon against her and swung it toward her. She ducked, leg swipes him and he fell back. This caused him to throw her staff into the air, once again. Noticing that there were six soldiers coming right at her and no weapon. She started to call out, "Xen-"
A warrior, dressed in black, flipped into the air and caught her staff. The dark one landed in front of her and commenced a violent assault on the attacking soldiers, knocking them back in lightning speed.
By the gods...this warrior fights as good as Xena! He's faster than Xena with the staff... She looked over at her friend; who's doing just fine on her own. "I think she's having too much fun!" she sighed. She could easily knock them senseless . . . she likes to get her juices flowing. She turned back to this lone warrior and noticed that all nine soldiers were on the ground.
The warrior approached her, handing her the staff. "There you go, my lady..." the warrior informed and bowed her head.
"Thank you," Gabrielle responded with a smile.
The warrior removed the mask that covered her face. Revealing a beautiful woman with short black hair and big brown eyes. "You're very welcome..." She noticed the necklace of an Amazon Queen around her neck. "Ah...your an Amazon Queen!" she exclaimed, adding with a touch of flirtation, "A beautiful one at that..."
Gabrielle's heart skipped a beat as her ego took another step higher. "Well..." she sighed and blushes a bit. "My name is Gabrielle," she acquainted, holding out her hand.
"Beautiful name," she replied, taking her hand and kissing it, "For a beautiful woman..."
"Ah..." Gabrielle's face got redder by the second. I've never had woman tell me all these romantic lines. Well, except when we where at that Amazon festival... She looked over and noticed a soldier.
A lone soldier came up from behind and attacked her, with his sword.
"Excuse me, for a moment..." she expressed, executing a back flip and landing behind him.
The lone soldier halted, turning around as he swung his sword at her head. She ducked just in time, punches him in the gut and causes him to drop his sword. Suddenly, she finished it with a roundhouse kick to his face. He flew back and was finally out for the count.
"Sorry, about that..." she notified. "Sometimes they come back for seconds!"
A thought forms...could this woman be Sierra? Nah...well her mother is Artemis after all! "You remind me of my best friend," Gabrielle revealed with a smile and enlightened, "You both love to fight!"
"Sounds like a cool friend..." she agreed, walking over to her new friend. "I'd love to meet-" She's interrupted by familiar presence behind her. Nah . . . can't be . . .
Xena finally finished them off as she approached Gabrielle. She noticed a warrior in black walking towards her friend. My heart skipped a beat...could this be? It can't...it's someone else. My gut tells me that's it her... "Sierra..." she hesitantly calls out.
"Yes?" Sierra replied, turning around and realizing that Xena was right behind her. My heart skipped a beat as I stared into those blue eyes of hers. "Xena!" she acknowledged with a big grin.
Xena grabbed Sierra and hugged her tightly. "Sierra!" she laughed as a smile grew. "I thought you were dead..." she filled in, tears of joy fell from her eyes. "Oh, you're alive and here!" Another hug, just to make sure that it's not a dream.
"I've missed you so..." Sierra revealed. My heart's beating so fast that I swear that it's going burst out. "I'm so sorry that I didn't come earlier," she confessed.
"It's all right, you're here now!" Xena decreed. Remembering Gabrielle, she turns to her and asks, "Are you all right?"
Gabrielle nodded, "Yes..."
Xena introduced her, "Gabrielle, this is Sierra."
"Hello, Sierra..." Gabrielle greeted. "Thank you, again for saving me."
"Sierra this is-" Xena's interrupted.
"We've met and you're very welcome, my Queen!" Sierra finished.
"I'll go get Argo," Gabrielle notified and made a hasty exit.
"So, where are you heading?"
Sierra replied, "Well...I was on my way to see Ephiny."
"We're heading that way anyway..." Xena revealed. "If you wouldn't mind some company."
"I'd be honored."
"It's settled then," Xena nodded, taking Argo's reins from Gabrielle.
"Where's your horse, Sierra?" Gabrielle inquired.
"Oh, I can't forget Cronous!" Sierra gasped, then whistles.
A black stallion came racing toward her and stopping two paces from her. "Good boy!" she praised him, rubbing his forehead. "Cronous, this is Xena and Gabrielle . . . " she introduced them, "And this is Argo." He neighed, shook his head, turned to his fellow horse and did the same.
"It's getting dark," Xena advised. "We should stop and find a room."
Gabrielle noticed a tavern and shouted, "FOOD!"
"A little hungry?" Xena slyly smiled.
Xena pointed, "There's a stable."
"Here...I'll stable them and you two can get a table," Sierra suggested.
Xena hesitated, noticing Gabrielle's pouting eyes and agreed, "All right . . . "
"Come on," Gabrielle insisted, walking ahead of her.
By the gods...she's really here. I need to talk to her...about what? Everything...life...lost love...I wonder if she still loves me? Xena snaps out of all her thoughts and replied, "I'm coming..." She followed her young companion into the tavern but not before taking another quick glance of Sierra.
The tavern was sparsely decorated, as were all the others they had visited. It's busy with the evening travelers seeking dinner and warm place to rest. Everyone turned to the new guests and back to their own conversations.
Gabrielle found a table, pulling out a chair and sat down. She placed her bag down and waited for Xena to sit. "This is quaint."
"Yes, it is..." Xena acknowledged, pulling out a chair next to the wall and sat down.
A barkeep approached them and asked, "What would you ladies like?"
"Two ports and a cider," Xena instructed.
"All right," she nodded and left to go fetch their drinks.
"So, do you think she still loves you?"
Xena blurted out, "Huh?"
"Sierra . . . "
"I don't know..." Xena shrugged. I hope so...my heart longs for her still, over all these winters.
"Here you go," the barkeep came back with their drinks and placing them down. "Would you like anything else?"
"Can I get a steak, some potatoes and some bread?" Gabrielle inquired.
"Sure," she nodded, turning to Xena, "And you?"
"Some cheese and bread, please."
"I'll be back," the barkeep informed.
"That's all?" Gabrielle interrogated, taking a needed drink.
She retorted, "I'm not really hungry." Then she lifted her mug and took a sip.
Sierra entered the tavern, carrying their saddlebags and handed Xena's bag to her. "Well, they're both brushed and ready for bed," she illustrated and took a seat.
"Thank you, Sierra..." Xena thanked and sat her bag next to her feet.
The barkeep came over to her and inquired, "Would you like something to eat?"
Sierra responded, "Ah...sure, can I have some cheese and bread?"
"All right," she grinned back, leaving them again.
"Thanks, for the port..." Sierra acknowledged and took a large swallow.
Xena nodded, "You're welcome."
"So, Gabrielle you're a bard?" Sierra explored, taking another drink.
"Why yes, I am!" she responded and asked, "How do you know?"
"Oh...I noticed the scrolls," Sierra revealed, feeling Xena's eyes upon her. By the Gods...I just want to lean over and kiss her.
"She's the best bard by far, that I know!" Xena illustrated as she finished her drink.
"Awww...Xena, thank you!" Gabrielle blushed.
Sierra looked over at her and then over at Xena. She made eye contact and felt their connection again. Gods, her eyes...my heart is just melting... She finished her drink and asked, "Do you want another?"
"Sure," Xena nodding, handing her the mug.
"And you, Gabrielle?"
"Sure," Gabrielle answered and handed hers too.
Sierra quizzed, "What are you drinking?"
"Cider, but I'd like to try a port..." Gabrielle retorted with an innocent grin.
"I'll be back."
Xena revealed, "You don't drink port."
"It's a special night," Gabrielle illustrated, confessing to her. "And I think she does."
"How?" Xena half-heartily objected. "You're not her." You're so true, little one...
"No," she shook her head and elaborated further. "Her eyes gave it away." Gabrielle raised a brow and advised, "Xena, you can't tell me you didn't notice."
The barkeep and a helper came back with their food. "Here you go ladies, enjoy!"
Sierra approached with their mugs, sat them down and took a seat, "Here you go."
"Thanks," Xena and Gabrielle responded unison.
Sierra glanced over at the all the food that was in front of this beautiful Queen and expressed, "By the gods, hungry are we!"
"She eats a lot for being so small," Xena acknowledged. "And where it goes, no one knows!" She laughed, putting her hand on her companion's shoulder. She then tore a piece of bread and ate it.
Sierra smiled, tearing a piece of bread and plopped it her mouth. She took another drink and bit into some cheese.
"So, tell us how you came back..." Gabrielle probed as she dug into her mound of food.
She glanced over at Xena and began her story. "Well, when I died..." she took a sip, "My mother took back to Mount Olympus." She ate some more bread and continued, "She gave me some Ambrosia and it brought me back."
Xena lovingly stared at her, hanging onto her every word and finally taking another sip from her port.
"Then I was sent to far lands," she revealed with a sigh and finished, "I wanted to find you..." Sierra stared into her blue eyes, "But as the seasons went by and I realized that maybe it wasn't meant to be." She then finished her port in one big gulp.
"No..." Xena put her hand on top of hers. "Not then..." she comforted. "We were young." Then finished her port also and lovely stared back at her.
"Maybe..." Sierra sighed, looking into her empty mug. Not wanting to stare into her loving eyes...for fear of falling into them again. Not that would be bad...but...
Gabrielle finished her drink and burped. "Excuse, me!" she apologized. "This isn't half bad!"
Sierra and Xena looked over at their excited friend and burst out laughing. "Well, you know you should be careful..." Xena advised. "It'll sneak upon you."
"I'm a big girl, Xena..." Gabrielle informed. "I think I'll have another!"
The barkeep came back, "Would you ladies like a refill?"
"Sure!" Gabrielle blurted out.
Sierra responded, "Yes, please."
Xena nodded, "Sure."
"Okay," the barkeep took their mugs.
Xena stated, "Oh, we also need two rooms."
"Well, all we have is one left..." she informed and asked, "Would you like it?"
Xena glanced over at her companions and nodded, "All right."
"We'll get it ready for you all," she decreed and left again.
"I guess we're all going to be bed buddies!" Gabrielle spoke up. I'm feeling something...warm and happy...that's it! She turned to her friends, noticing there's a pink aura between the two and gasped, "Wow..."
"What is it Gabrielle?" Xena worriedly questioned.
"I can see this pink aura around you two..." Gabrielle enlightened with a smile.
"My Queen, I think you're buzzed!"
Xena recommended, "Maybe, you shouldn't drink anymore..."
Gabrielle proclaimed, "I'll be fine, Xena!"
The barkeep came back with their drinks, "Here you go. Do you want to pay for everything now or later?"
"How much is it?" Xena inquired, digging for her bag of dinars.
"For the food, drinks and the room..." she added it up and replied, "Thirty dinars, please."
"I've got it," Sierra implies and lays fifty down. "And your tip."
A big smile erupted on her face, thanking her. "You're so generous."
"You don't have to do that," Xena insisted.
Sierra said, "I wanted to..."
Suddenly, a winded Ephiny rushed in and called out, "Sierra!" She found her sitting with Xena and Gabrielle. She approached their table and slammed her hands onto the table; out of breath. "I've got..." she took a deep breath, "Bad news..."
"Slow down," Sierra calmed her and pulled out a chair. "Here, sit and tell me."
She looked over at Xena and Gabrielle and greeted, "Hello, Xena and Gabrielle." Then she turned to Sierra and disclosed, "Morgana is coming!"
"Who's Morgana?" Gabrielle asked and took another sip.
Ephiny enlightened, "A ruthless Amazon whose only goal is to destroy our peaceful existence!"
"Here," Xena handed her a mug of port.
"Thanks," Ephiny nodded, drinking from it and revealed, "She wants you, Sierra."
"I know..." Sierra replied and took a large gulp from her port.
"What does she want with you?" Xena questioned.
"My title..." Sierra answered, finishing her drink and added, "And my life." She got up, "I'm going for a walk."
"Wait," Xena spoke up and advised, "We need to make a plan."
Sierra turned to her and stared into her eyes. I've got be alone now... "We will..." she decreed, grabbing her bag and leaving them in the tavern.
Gabrielle put her hand on her arm and asked, "Xena, what are we going to do?"
By the gods, I want to follow you and talk...in a few... "I don't know," Xena responded and sat back down. "Tell me about Morgana."
"Well, she was part of our sister tribe to the west..." Ephiny disclosed and continued, "She's a Shamaness, who turned dark and lusted after power."
"What about Sierra?" Gabrielle quizzed.
"Power?" Xena mumbled, feeling there's something else. "That can't be the only reason . . . "
Ephiny nodded yes, "Well, supposedly . . . they were an item at one time or another." She took another sip, "Sierra found Morgana giving her allegiance to the dark one. She broke it off and banished her from the tribe." Then she finished her drink and continued on, "Ever since then, Morgana has been gaining a army. She wants Sierra's title and revenge."
Gabrielle's stunned, "By the gods..."
"How many warriors does she have?" Xena inquired.
"From what I heard, she had at least a hundred or so..." she shrugged.
"How many Amazons do you have?" Xena asked as a plan formed within her mind.
"We have around 100," Ephiny replied and realized what she's thinking. "I've sent word to the other tribes for reinforcements. It's going to take a moon for them to get here."
"Good," Xena acknowledged. "Where is Morgana's army now?"
She sighed, "Maybe a day's travel or less..."
Xena shook her head and expressed, "That's cutting it real close..."
"All the Amazons are getting ready as we speak," she revealed.
"Good," Xena suggested, rising to her feet as she picked her bag up. "Why don't you take Gabrielle back to the tribe and keep her safe."
"But..." Gabrielle spoke up.
Xena placed her hand on her shoulder and whispered, "I need you there." She hugged her, "I want to make sure everyone's ready, okay?"
I can't win... Gabrielle reluctantly nodded, "All right..."
Sierra entered the tavern, noticing everyone was getting up and inquired, "Going back to the tribe?"
"Yes," Ephiny replied, gesturing toward Gabrielle. "We should go," she advised and placed her hand upon Sierra's arm. "We'll see you in the morning,"
"Be careful," Sierra decreed.
Gabrielle slightly grinned and comforted her. "We're here to help...it'll be all right." Then she turned and followed Ephiny out of the tavern.
The barkeep came up to her and informed, "Your room is ready." She pointed toward the stairs, "It's the last door on your right."
"Thank you," Sierra replied, looking over at Xena who's now standing next to her. "Hello, I guess we should make it a night."
Xena nodded with a small smile, "It's going to be a busy day."
Sierra led the way toward their room. I guess I'm going to explain everything...as much as I can... She reached their room and opened the door.
There's a large bed to the north above it is a large window, a fireplace on the west wall along with two chairs on each side and a large wooden chest to the east. A lit lantern sat on the table next to the bed as it lit this modest room up.
"Home sweet home."
Xena entered behind her, "I think we got the best room." She grinned, shutting the door and placed her bag next to the bed. "I'll get the fire going." Finally we're alone...
Memories of their past flash before her eyes... A grin formed on her otherwise serious face. Sierra sat her stuff down next to the bed and sat down herself. She continued to stare over at Xena. Gods, she looks so beautiful...
I can feel her eyes on me... Come on warrior, chill out...it's been a long time. She turned, looking into Sierra's eyes and finding her answer. Yep...she still loves me...
She loves me still... Those baby blues can't tell a lie. It's as though we've never been apart...the feelings that I felt then are still here. "So..." Sierra's interrupted by a knock.
"I'll get it," Xena growled, bolting toward the door. This better be important... "Yes?" she greeted firmly.
The barkeep was holding pitcher of port and two mugs. "Hello again," she entered and sat the port down next to the bed. "I though you two would like this," she suggested, leaving them again. "Thank you, again for the tip."
"You're welcome," Sierra smiled back, taking her sword off.
"Thanks," Xena responded and closed the door behind her.
Sierra poured some port into the mugs, handing one to Xena. "There you go."
Xena took the mug, "Thanks," She sat down on the edge of the bed and stared at Sierra. There's a lot on her mind...
Sierra opened the window's shutters and made herself comfortable on its sill. Noticing that there's more than plenty of room for Xena to sit across from her. "I guess I should tell you what happened."
Xena got up and sat across from her, "If you want." She began to remove her armor and made herself comfortable as well.
"Okay..." she took a sip and disclosed, "Number one, we weren't together like everyone says. Really close friends...nothing more. I think maybe she started the rumors. Anyway, I left and when I came back she changed into what she is now."
"She wanted more..."
Sierra nodded, running her fingers through her hair and continued, "Well, I banished her and she swore vengeance on me. Since she couldn't have me...I guess she didn't want anyone else as well."
"Well, I guess we'll have to put a stop to her ravings!"
"We have to be careful," she illustrated, "She's a Shamaness...a dark one at that but, besides that she also has Ares on her side." She glanced out the window; up at the stars and revealed, "She's gained a lot of power over all these winters..."
"Well, I have a plan..."
Ephiny and Gabrielle were riding fast and hard back to the tribe.
"So, what's going on with Sierra and Xena?"
Gabrielle replied, "What do you mean?"
"I got this feeling when I sat down."
"Oh, about that..." Gabrielle sighed. "Unrelenting love."
"What?" Ephiny remarked.
"Yeah, lost love..." she revealed, realizing that she didn't know and inquired, "You didn't know?"
"No," she shook her head. I've heard every tale, fact or fiction but this...was a biggie. "When did this happen?"
"Fourteen winters ago," Gabrielle disclosed. "Today, was their first contact since that sad day..."
"What do you mean?"
"The day Sierra died saving Xena's life," she divulged. "She died in her arms. Her death pushed Xena over the edge."
"Yes..." Gabrielle repeated. "You didn't know that either?"
"NO!" she retorted and expressed, "I can understand how Xena felt..."
"Me too," Gabrielle sighed. Memories of Perdicus' death flash before her eyes. "The loss of your soul mate..." she envisioned Xena's tragic loss, "Then today you're face to face with each other in the flesh. Everything you were and are comes to blows," she illustrated. "Xena's so strong..."
"Yes she is," Ephiny acknowledged. "You have the best friend, that everyone desires."
Gabrielle smiled and agreed, "I guess I do."
"We're almost there."
"Good!" Gabrielle expressed. "My butt's asleep!"
"That's a good plan," Sierra decreed with a smile and continued to gaze into the heavens.
"Thanks," Xena expressed. "So, tell me what's going on in that beautiful mind of yours?"
"I was thinking..."
"About what?" Xena probed further and added, "You know you can tell me anything."
"I know," she nodded, "All those lonely nights after that day..." Sierra looked away, continuing to stare at the North start. "Wondering if you ever thought about me..."
Xena moved closer to her and gently turned her head toward her. "Yes," she revealed, "After all those battles I would leave my camp and wonder the same thing. Sometimes, I would envision what it would have been like if you had lived."
"What did you see?"
"Me, actually settling down!" she divulged.
"But, that wasn't you..." Sierra advised. "And that wasn't me."
"I know," she made known and continued, "But it was the happiest time that I've had since childhood."
"Yes, you brought happiness, friendship and love into my otherwise dark heart..." Xena confessed and proceeded further, "You brought my life meaning." She stared into her eyes and fell into them again, leaning over and kissing her on the lips.
Their lips gently meet as if was their first time. They let themselves go as it became stronger and harder. They pulled each other closer as the kiss grew fierce. All their pent-up love rose to the surface. Then it slowly ended as they gazed into each other's eyes.
"By the Gods..."
"What?" Xena worriedly asked.
She revealed with a smile, "It feels as though we were never apart."
"I know," Xena replied, caressing her face gently.
A loud pop was heard from the fire; that was now dying out.
"Let me get it," Sierra informed, getting up and adding another log to it.
Xena climbed down, taking off her leathers and lounged on the bed seductively. Her loving eyes observed her lover. You're so beautiful... "Why don't you come over here . . . "
"All right," Sierra turned to see her lover. You're so lovely... She walked over as Xena slowly rose to her feet.
She removed Sierra's shirt and advised her, "I don't think you'll be needing this." She leaned over and began kissing her, then stopped and sat back down on the bed.
Sierra bent over, untied her boots and took them off as well. She sat down next to her and asked, "Is this what you really want?"
"Yes..." she answered, pulling her closer and expressed, "More than ever." Xena kisses her again and buried her tongue inside her lover's mouth. Their tongues caressing one another, tasting each other as the kiss became furious and rougher. Their passion overwhelmed them both.
Sierra slowly lowered Xena onto her back, then slowly climbed on top of her, not letting their lips part. Suddenly, Xena flipped her on her back and straddled her. She held her arms down and forcibly pinned her lover.
"Oh...I forgot you're the aggressor," Sierra decreed.
A wicked grin spread emerged on her face as she pulled Sierra up. She ripped off her top that covered her breasts. "You don't need this..." she decreed, gently kneaded them.
Sierra reaches around and tried to pull off her slip.
"Not yet..." Xena directed and pushed her down on her back.
"Xena, you're driving me crazy!"
Xena grinned, "That's the idea..." She reached down, pulling off her pants in one swift move. Revealing a tanned, very toned goddess with a few more scars. "You've kept yourself up," Xena remarked and ran her hands across her thighs.
"You know..." Sierra expressed. "I've gotta look good for all those women!"
"Yeah, right!" Xena chuckled, finally removing her slip.
Sierra's eyes examined her lover's naked body, reaching out and gently touching her abs and proclaimed, "You're as beautiful as I remembered."
Xena moved her right leg and positioned it between Sierra's legs. Resting it next to her lover's crotch and slowly climbing on top of her. Ever so softly letting her tongue lick a trail from her abdomen up to her breasts. Where she kissed it, taking one nipple and gently suckled, letting her tongue play with it as it perk itself up. She tenderly bit it making Sierra slightly jump. Sierra ran her hands through Xena's long dark hair, pulling her toward her and innocently asked, "Yes?"
"Come here," Sierra commanded, drawing her closer for a kiss as her tongue pried Xena's lips open. She gave in and let her fill her. She rubbed her knee into her lover's womanhood and felt her wet warmth. A soft moan escaped from her lover's mouth.
Xena pulled away, turning to the other breast and grazes its nipple with her tongue. Her right hand embarks on a journey over her body, towards her lover's center. She moved her knee, letting her hand continue where it left off. Her strong fingers caressed her and rubbing its nub. Sierra groaned, growing wetter by each passing second. She continued faster and harder as her Sierra was about reach her climax. Then she abruptly stopped and mischievously remarked, "Oh not yet, love..."
"Huh?" Sierra sighed and took a deep breath.
Xena kissed a trail to her lover's mound. She stopped and deeply inhaling her musky scent. "Sweet Artemis...you smell so good!" she revealed, lowering her mouth to her prize. Then she wrapped her strong arms around Sierra's legs as she began to taste her.
Sierra ever so softly moaned at Xena's contact.
She continued her attack on her lover's clitoris. She held her tight as her body began to quiver. I'm already there...lover. Xena prepared for Sierra's climax and continued her assault upon her.
Sierra sighed heavily, taking a long deep breath. "Come here..."
"Yes?" Xena purred, kissing her inner thigh. She wiped the excess juices from her lips and climbed up to her. "So, are you a geyser now?" she inquired with a smirk. Then she leaned over and planted a kiss on her awaiting lips.
Sierra flipped her onto her back. "I'll show you a geyser..." she retorted, seizing her neck. Kissing a trail toward her breast and circled around its nipple. She captured with her mouth, letting her teeth graze up it as her knee found its place, between Xena's legs.
Xena shivered as a moan escaped. "I didn't do this to you..." she admitted with a whimper and began gyrating against her lover's knee. I can't take much more of this...
After licking a trail from her breasts, down her abs and toward her awaiting mound. "Not so fast, lover..." Sierra advised, moving her knee and brushed the back of her hand against her prize. Finally moving her hand as it traveled along Xena's inner thigh.
"For the love of Zeus..."
Sierra kissed a trail past her mound toward the ultimate prize. She softly blew upon it, causing her to tremble beneath her and letting her tongue graze upon its nub and gently sucking it.
Xena moaned, shuddering as she reached her climax.
Sierra lapped up all her juices and continued her assault. She wrapped her arms around her thighs and held her down for another round.
Before Xena could recover, she's plunged back into taking short shallow breaths. I'm going to get her for this... Her legs quivered as she's about release herself again. A moment later, she's spent again and lays there trembling.
Sierra kissed her inner thigh, climbing up and leaned on her right arm. She caressed Xena's cheek and expressed, "You're a goddess..."
Xena grinned, pulling her closer to her. "I love you." She kissed her lover's warm lips and held her close.
Sierra laid her head on her lover's chest and replied, "I love you too..." She reached over and grabbed a blanket. Covering them from the chilled air, closing her eyes and is out.
Xena sat there for a moment, running her fingers through Sierra's hair. We're finally together...I'm not going let anything happen to you, love.... She finally closed her eyes, falling fast asleep; knowing that her soul mate was sleeping on her.
THE NEXT MORNING
Xena woke first and felt Sierra's arm was lying on her stomach. She turned, noticing Sierra's head was on resting next her shoulder and whispered, "You're so beautiful..." Then she slowly got up, making sure not to wake her lover up.
Sierra turned over and continued to sleep.
"I love you..." she expressed and covered her with the blanket. She dressed, grabbing her stuff and heading out the door.
Xena reached the stable, readying Argo for their journey. "We've got a busy day ahead of us."
I'm getting a disgusting feeling in my gut... She scanned the barn for a sign of someone.
Ares appeared before her and greeted, "What a beautiful day for a battle!"
Xena's not surprised, "What do you want?"
"Xena, I just wanted to talk..."
"I'm busy," she drearily replied.
"Oh yeah..." he grinned and revealed, "Your plan of leaving Sierra here. While you fight Morgana."
"Do you have a point?"
Ares retorted, "Sierra's going to be bit upset..."
"I can deal with her."
"If you fight her and win..." he advised, "There's a price that you're going to have to pay."
"There's always a price," Xena stated.
"This one's a biggie," he illustrated and inquired, "Are you willing to pay it?"
Xena turned to him and responded, "Yes..."
"This battle doesn't involve you," Ares asserted and explored further, "Does she mean that much to you?"
Realizing something and proclaimed, "You're in love with her!" He scoffed. "The mighty Warrior Princess is in love!"
"I don't have time for this!" Xena grumbled, leading Argo out of the stables.
"If you go through with this," he warned. "I won't be able to help you."
"I never asked you for any help."
"Fine!" Ares shrugged and disappeared.
Xena arrived at the Amazon's tribe, noticing Gabrielle talking to Ephiny. She got off of Argo and instructed a young Amazon, "Can you tie her up?"
"Sure," she nodded, taking her reins and lead her off.
"Is everyone in position?" Xena inquired, scanning the soon to be battlefield.
Ephiny nodded, "Yes, oh...our reinforcements came early." She pointed toward the trees, "They're in position."
"Good . . . "
Gabrielle noticed that Sierra wasn't here and inquired, "Where's Sierra?"
Xena abruptly replied, "She's at the inn."
"Is that wise?" Ephiny raised a brow. "This is her fight."
Gabrielle agreed, "Yeah, Xena maybe she should be here too..."
"She's safe there," she retorted. "End of discussion."
Gabrielle and Ephiny shrugged at one another.
Sierra flipped through the air and landed near them. "Xena, I'm the Queen..." she decreed, "I can take care of myself." Turning to the others and greeted, "Morning."
"Hello," Gabrielle nodded.
"We're ready," Ephiny informed.
Xena turned to her, pulling her to the side and revealed, "I didn't want anything to happen to you."
"You're letting your heart speak for you," Sierra enlightened, "But your mind tells you that I'm an asset
"I know..." Xena agreed. "I don't want to lose you again."
"You're not going to lose me."
"Awww...how romantic!" a mighty warrior exclaimed. She's clad in black armor and rode atop a large black steed, covered with armor as well.
"Morgana..." Sierra growled, turning toward her voice.
"You remembered me," Morgana expressed with a grin and added, "I'm flattered."
Sierra declared, "Well, don't be..."
A mischievous smile erupted upon her pale skin. Her long red fell into her eyes as she noticed Xena and her friends. "Well, isn't this special..." she sighed, "Xena...the warrior princess, here in the flesh. Oh...how I've longed to meet you."
Xena drearily responded, "I can't say the same."
"I'm sorry to here that..." Morgana shrugged. "Time's up, Sierra!" she declared and whistled.
An hundred or so armor clad warriors appeared behind her. They had their swords drawn and were ready for the battle.
"What do you think, Sierra?" Morgana inquired, gesturing toward her men.
Sierra isn't impressed, "Is this all that was left from under all those rocks?"
Morgana's enraged, signaling the attack and roared, "KILL EVERYONE!!!"
The soldiers charged, yelling and shouting all the way. They ran through the dense forest towards them. All of a sudden, they're attacked from above. Amazons leapt from the trees and landed upon them, knocking them out. Arrows were shot from the trees, pelting the unfortunate. The few that passed them fell into pits and were impaled by spears. Complete chaos was covering this battlefield.
Sierra glanced at Xena and smiled. "Till the end," she said and ran toward Morgana.
Visions of our last battle flashes to my eyes . . . as her blood covered my hands . . . "Sierra..." Xena gasped and followed behind.
"Come on!" Ephiny shouted to Gabrielle.
"I'm right behind you," she responded.
Morgana scanned this slaughter and grumbled, "You're so cleaver...Sierra." She observed Sierra coming right for her, pulling out her sword and charged toward her.
Two sword-wielding soldiers blocked Xena's path. She pulled out her sword as they attacked. She easily blocked them and knocked them back. They came at her again. She swung her sword and slit their guts open. Then she flipped over them and continued the chase.
Ephiny dodged a battle-ax to the head. She struck her assailant in the gut and he doubled over. She then hit him in the back of head with the butt handle of her sword and fell to the ground in a heap. She turned and glanced over at Gabrielle.
Gabrielle had just finished serving a final blow to her attacker and nodded, "I'm fine..."
Gabrielle replied, "Thanks!"
Sierra leapt into the air with a flying kick, which knocked Morgana off her horse. She landed safely on her feet, as did Morgana.
"Are you ready to die?" Morgana asked.
"Are you?" Sierra rebutted, pulling out her sword.
"AHHHH!" Morgana cried out and attacked her with her sword.
Their swords struck each other. Morgana pulled out a dagger and swung it toward her gut. Sierra jumped back in time, kicking it from her hand and pushed her back.
Morgana noticed Xena approaching them and growled, "So, you both want to fight me..." She began to chant and decreed, "So be it!"
A bright light flashed within her and another Morgana stepped out from her body. The second one rushed Xena began attacking her.
Sierra roared, "Leave her out of this!"
"No..." she shook her head, "I'll have fun killing you both!" Morgana rushed her and swung her sword toward her head.
Sierra ducked in time, then slashed her in the gut. "You're losing your touch Morgana..." she antagonized. "I guess you shouldn't spread yourself so thin!"
Xena easily blocked her sword and struck her in the gut, knocking her back a step or two. She taunted her, "Come on..." she twirled her sword in her hand, "You're supposed to be this great Amazon."
"How dare you!" roared the second Morgana and charged at her again.
Morgana felt for her gut, noticing blood on her fingers and called out, "ARES!"
Sierra rushed her and struck by a ball of red light. Causing her to fly back twenty feet, winded and on her knees. A red barrier formed around her arms, paralyzing her. She struggled to move to no avail, realizing this and roared, "What? You can't fight your own battles anymore!"
Xena kicked the second Morgana back, causing her to land hard onto her back, winded and dazed. She turned to check on Sierra and noticed her on the ground. "NO!" Xena bellowed out as the second Morgana charged her again.
"Thank you, Ares..."
"I'm always at your service," Ares replied, appearing behind her.
"Sometimes, Sierra..." she enlightened, "I needed that little advantage." Morgana slowly approached her, "Time to die..." She lifted her sword up for the kill. Suddenly, a bolt of white light struck her in the chest. Sending her back 30 feet and landing hard onto the ground.
Ares pondered, "What the..." Another bolt hit him square in the chest, sending him flying into a tree. He fell to the ground in heap and shook off the blow. "Ahh...little sis," he uttered, "That was good." He got to his feet and dusted himself off.
Artemis appeared next to Sierra and warned, "Stay out of this, Ares! I'm warning you!" Turning to her daughter and smiled, "You're free, sweetheart."
The red barrier disappeared and Sierra's once again free. She glanced up at her mother, grinning back and expressed, "Thanks mom!"
"You're welcome baby," she acknowledged and then disappeared.
"Fine..." he sighed and disappeared also.
Xena impaled the second Morgana in the stomach as she kicked her off her sword. Morgana fell to her knees, with another swing of Xena's sword she was decapitated.
Morgana screamed out in disgust, "NO!" Then she wildly swung her sword at Sierra.
Sierra dodged and sliced her deeper in the gut again as Morgana dropped her sword. She swung her sword again, beheading her in one quick move. Then she stared down at her body, putting her sword away and whispered, "It's finally over..."
"Yes, it is..." Xena confirmed, gently touching her shoulder.
"Thank you," Sierra thanked. "I couldn't have done it without you."
"You're very welcome," she replied, pulling her away from Morgana's body. "So, what are you going to do now?" Xena inquired as a mischievous grin formed.
"I guess we could figure that out together..."
They walked away from the bodies and continued their private discussion. The bodies began to glow as bright ball of light left each of the bodies. They hovered in the mid air just pulsating.
Gabrielle looked over at her triumphant friends, noticing the orbs, "What in Zeus..."
Sierra and Xena turned too late. The orbs flew straight for them, striking each one in the chest and sending them back. The orbs' light surrounded their bodies and engulfed them.
Xena got to her knees, gasping for air. "Sierra..." she called, "Are you all right?" Then she got up, noticing her lover and approached her. "Sierra..." she repeated and reached down to touch her.
Sierra was on all fours, when she kicked Xena in the stomach. "Oh, I'm fine now!" she revealed as her eyes turned red. She sideswiped her legs out from under her. "As soon as I finish you off first!" she enlightened and pinning her down. She then pulled out her dagger and placed it against Xena's throat.
Xena's on the ground before she said a word edge wise and pled, "Sierra, what's wrong with you?" Noticing her Lover's eyes and growled, "Morgana..."
KILL HER!!!! Sierra replied, "Finishing what I started!"
"Fight her, Sierra!" she advised. "You're stronger than she is..."
KILL HER!!! "NO!!!" Sierra cried out and threw the knife to the side. She rubbed her temples as if that would help but it didn't. She climbed off and was possessed again by Morgana, "I'm going kill you slowly!"
Xena leapt to her feet, "Fight her, Sierra!"
KILL HER NOW!!! "STOP IT!" she roared to Morgana's voice within herself. Sierra turned to Xena , staring into her eyes and begged, "I'm so sorry.."
Xena stared back and whispered, "I love you..."
Sierra bowed her head, raising it slowly again and revealing her glowing red eyes. "How touching..." She remarked and warned, "If I couldn't have her, then no one will!" She ran toward Morgana's steed, leapt into the saddle and rode off.
Xena watched her lover ride off. No...this isn't over... "This is just the beginning..."
"Surprise!" Ares appeared next to her, grinning from ear to ear.
"What do you want?"
"How does it feel?" he probed further.
"Being an immortal..." Ares enlightened and disappeared. "Was it worth it?"
Xena nodded, "Yes..."
Gabrielle walked up to her, "What are we going to do?"
"Find her," Xena gazed at horizon and expressed, "I'm not going to lose her again..."
Morgana rode her mount, harder than before. I need to distance myself from Xena and those damn Amazons... Realizing that her steed was overly exhausted. She slowed her pace down and completely stopped. "Sorry, boy..." she whispered into his ear and got off, "We'll rest here for awhile." She led him off the trail and into the awaiting forest. She brought him to a small stream and waited as he drank from it. "There you go, boy..." Morgana praised, scanning the area around. A throbbing sensation erupted within her mind. She then began to rub her temples as to relieve the pain.
"This will do for now," she grumbled. Her glowing eyes changed to dark, almost black ones. She undid the straps to her saddle and took it off. She sat it down and began to set up camp. Morgana's head commenced to throb again. Sierra's trying to gain control over her possessed body. "Oh, no you don't!" Morgana roared and successfully shoved her further into the darkness.
"GET OUT OF MY BODY, MORGANA!!!"
"No way, I'm having to much fun with it!"
"You won't win..."
"Oh, but I already have..."
"Can we take a break?" Gabrielle whined, holding onto Xena's waist for dear life.
Xena grumbled, "I guess..." She slowed Argo down and suggested, "Argo needs a rest, anyway."
"Xena, I think we all could use a rest!" she sighed, climbing off Argo and stretching out.
Xena climbed off too and scanned the area for Sierra's tracks. She's not covering her tracks at all... "I would think Morgana would be smarter than that," she said, shaking her head. Sierra's behind this...she wanted me to follow. "Fight her, Sierra..." She examined the ground for more tracks and revealed, "She's half a day ahead of us."
"Only, half a day?"
"Yes...lets make camp," Xena turned to Argo and proceeded to take off her saddle. "I'm sorry that I rode you hard today," she whispered, "I didn't want to lose Sierra again."
Argo neighed and bobbed her head in acknowledgment.
"Thank you, girl..." she sat her saddle down and brush her down.
Gabrielle came back with a stack full of branches. She laid them down next to the fire and sat down. "Xena, we'll get her back..."
"I know..." Xena glanced over at her. "I'm going to find us dinner." She then entered the dark forest and disappeared within it.
An idea formed as she watched her leave. "Oh!" she gasped, grabbing her bag of scrolls and pulled out a fresh one. "Sierra's life would be a great story..." she declared and began to write it out, "I hope she wouldn't mind."
"I'd think she would be honored, little one..." Artemis's gentle voice echoed through the wind.
Gabrielle's startled, then inquired, "Who's out there?"
A bright light appeared before her. "It's only me," Artemis stated and stepped out from the light, "You have nothing to worry about, little one..."
"I'm so sorry, Artemis!" she fell to one knee, bowing her head. "It was just..."
"Don't worry about that..." smiled Artemis, then gazed over their campsite for Xena. "Is Xena around?"
"Yeah...she went hunting," she got up and pointed towards the forest.
"Thank you," Artemis turned, then entered her forest.
"Your welcome," Gabrielle grinned back, then sat back down and continued to write. This is going to rock! Fourteen winters ago, a young warrior named Sierra...
Xena's crouched in some bushes observing a rather large rabbit munching away on some grass. She slowly pulled out her chakram and flung towards their dinner. It decapitated the rabbit, bounced off a rock, ricocheted off a tree trunk and flew into her awaiting hand. She grinned and walked over to the rabbit. Then picked it up and felt someone watching her. "SHOW YOURSELF!" Xena ordered, as she held up her chakram.
Artemis stepped out from behind a tree and greeted, "Hello, Xena.."
"Artemis?" she recognized, then put her chakram away.
"I see, your putting the chakram to good use."
"Well, you know..." she smiled, then held up the rabbit. "So, what can I do for you?"
"I want you to save my baby."
"I know," Xena nodded and began cleaning the rabbit.
"I know my brother..." Artemis sighed. Her beautiful eyes showed the sadness within them. "Which means..."
"We don't have much time!" she finished and hung the rabbit up.
"Before, he changes her life forever..." she advised, then sat down on a large rock. "He's been after her ever since she was little," Artemis revealed, "I've done my best to protect her..."
"Sierra, is a very strong woman..." Xena illustrated and sat down next her. "I don't think you have anything to worry about there."
"I know...she takes it from her father's side!" she gently grinned and whispered, "Along with many other skills..."
"Huh?" Xena raised a brow to the last statement. I wonder what she meant by that comment...
Artemis broke from the thought of her baby's father. A very handsome man wearing black leathers...dark hair and eyes...those eyes. "Anyway, her body's possessed by an evil entity."
Xena lowered her head, "Morgana..."
"Yes, but...there's something else..." Artemis sighed and continued, "She's been trying to conjure this evil entity for some time now. Anyway...she's been unsuccessful in doing so. Until now...."
She lowered her head too, "She needs a an Immortal or a god to release it...but, it's forbidden for a god to do so."
"Sierra..." Xena shook her head.
Artemis took a deep breath and exhaled, "Yes..."
"Tell me about this Entity?"
"The Ancient One...an evil that's been around since the beginning of time itself."
"I've never heard of this Ancient..." Xena flatly stated.
"The Titans entombed it, because it became a god. Its powers were too great for them to control anymore. It's a secret that the gods only whispered about and rarely talk about."
"What kind of powers?"
"When it kills, it takes the mortal's soul and so it grows. The more souls it possesses, the more power it has!" revealed Artemis.
"How do we stop it?"
"Well...the Ancient One, has the powers of a god. So, if it's released..."
"The only way you can kill a god...is hind's blood."
"And to do so, you must stop..."
"Morgana..." Xena whispered, then turned to Artemis, "Before she releases it!"
"Yes," Artemis nodded, "Just don't hurt my only child..."
"You know I wouldn't...there's another way."
"Alas, if we fail. Our world..." she gestured around her and continued, "As we know it, will be one of pure darkness and evil." Artemis turned to Xena and stated further, "That is why Ares, is helping her. He thinks he can control the Ancient One." Then she ran her fingers through her long hair and finished her story, "But, he's so blind that he doesn't see the whole picture."
"That its only desire is to destroy...gods...mortals...this world and anything else that gets in its way!" Artemis decreed.
"I won't let that happen..."
"I know...Ares has all the cards."
"Well, not all..." Xena retorted as a sly smirk began to form.
Artemis returned her gaze to Xena and probed further, "Do you have a plan?"
Sierra broke down the final barrier that Morgana had built within her body. There's another darker entity that's surrounding Morgana's soul. One that seemed to be in control of her...I've got to get them out!
Morgana sat in front of her fire, sharpening her sword. A familiar presence was felt within her gut. "Ares..."
"Good evening..." he greeted, then appeared in front of her. "How's the new body?"
"Just fine..." Morgana replied and put her sword away, "She's in great shape." She began to flexed her biceps, then stretched.
Ares warned, "Just, don't damage it!"
"Why?" she inquired, glaring over at him. "Does she mean something to you?"
"Yes, lets just say...I have an interest in her."
"What could that be?"
"It's none of your business!" he roared.
"Ouch!" Morgana sighed, "That hurt..."
"I want to remind you of our deal."
"I know...your new way," she gestured, then took a sip from her wine skin. "I won't forget it...I've got a few things I have to do first." I've found my sacrifice, Ancient one...she's young and innocent...
"NO! LEAVE HER OUT OF THIS!"
"Be quite!" she grumbled. "The blond will do nicely..."
"Never mind, nothing that concerns you, yet..."
"But, there are a few things that I could use..."
"What?" Ares impatiently waited for her response.
"Give me an army...for starters," the glowing desire for power formed within her devious mind.
"NO!!!" Sierra roared from her prison.
"SHUT UP!" Morgana shouted, rubbing her temples again.
Noticing her discomfort and grinned, "Having problems with Sierra?"
"Nothing you have to worry about..."
"Don't underestimate her," Ares decreed as he disappeared. "She possesses many talents."
Xena returned with their dinner. She stopped at the edge of camp and observed Gabrielle writing. I've been taking all my frustrations out on her...I have to stop. "Dinners up," she gestured.
"Xena!" Gabrielle turned and noticed the rabbit, "Rabbit, yummy!" Then took the rabbit, skewered it and placed it over the fire to cook.
"Gabrielle, I'm so sorry..."
"Don't worry," Gabrielle smiled. "The love of your life is in trouble."
"I know, but I had no reason too-"
"Xena, it's all right..." she laid her hand on her arm, "Really."
Xena nodded and grinned, "Thank you..."
"No problem," she smiled back and sat down.
"What are you working on?"
"Oh, I'm writing a scroll about Sierra's life..." she youthfully grinned at this test of her ability. "Since, you know more than I do. Do you mind if I ask you some questions about her?"
"Sure, go head..." Xena replied as she pulled her sword out. Then sat across from her and began to sharpen her sword. "So, who's Sierra's father?"
"She's never really talked about him..."
"Nope..." Xena shook her head. There was a rumor that some of the Amazons had said. "Well, I heard a rumor..."
"That he was a Warrior that fell in battle...trying to save one of Artemis's temples."
"So, they say. Artemis fell in love with him as he lay there dying in her arms. He expressed to her, that he was the last of his family. Furthermore, he revealed that he never experienced true love, nor the love of a child...which he always dreamed of having, but never had time for. Alas, he decreed the only love he had was for nature...."
"How sad," Gabrielle wiped a tear from her sad eyes and turned the rabbit over.
"Artemis fell even more for him..." she sighed, " Then gave him what he desired the most." Xena stopped sharpening her sword, then stared into the fire.
"A real love and a daughter..." she smiled. The thought of infant Sierra...Oh, how cute she would be...gods! What am I thinking!
"That's so romantic!" Gabrielle expressed and apologized, "Sorry, not his death of course...but of what love could do!"
"Yes, but like I said...it could be just a tall tale," she shrugged and finished sharpening her sword. "If you want the truth, you'll have to ask Sierra yourself."
LATER THAT EVENING
Sierra noticed that her cell door was ajar and stepped out. "Finally, she's let her guard down...drinking to much was always her weakness!" She gained control over her body and felt the buzz of wine. "Thank the gods, she doesn't know I can drink like a fish!" she laughed, "Ahhh...it feels so good to be back in control..." she remembered Morgana's plan, "I've got to warn her! I know Xena will be following my tracks. She shouldn't be too far, I hope..." Then she bolted into the forest in search of her lover.
A FEW CANDLEMARKS LATER
Xena suddenly, woke from her light sleep as the fire crackled loudly. She threw another branch into the fire and glanced over at her best friend. At least one of us will have a good nights rest... She got up and proceeded to do another perimeter check.
Sierra entered the camp and noticed Gabrielle sleeping soundly. "I won't let anything happen to you, my Queen..." A sharp pain erupted throughout her head. She fell to her knees in pain and groaned, "Not now...."
Xena paused at a large boulder and sat down. She scanned the valley as the Moon's rays shined down upon it. "This is so, beautiful..." she sighed. I wish Sierra was here to enjoy this view...she would just love it!
"Not as beautiful as you are..."
Xena turned and noticed Sierra standing a few feet from her. "Sierra!" she leapt off the boulder and hugged her tightly. Then she kissed her on the cheek and whispered, "I've missed you, Lover."
"And I of you," she replied with a grin and remembered, "I've got to warn you-"
Xena placed her finger on her lips, "Shh..." She pulled her towards her awaiting lips and gently kissed them. Suddenly, the kiss turned passionate and hard as they fell into one another. Nothing else mattered now, except the loving touch of one another.
Sierra's mind clouded and became dark, "No..." she groaned and pulled away. "Xena...you have to listen me," Sierra decreed, raising her hands up.
"What?" Xena gasps as she tried to gain control over her hunger.
"I don't have much time..." Sierra explained as another sharp pain erupted, "NOOOO!!!" She dropped to her knees in pain and stuttered out, "S..Stay...out...of."
Xena rushed to her aid, "Sierra, what's happening?"
"NO!" Sierra warned and pulled away from her again, "Stay back..."
"Let me help you."
"I don't want to hurt you," she expressed. Morgana's coming back... "Xena, she's after Gabrielle..." No...not again...
"A...sacrifice," revealed Sierra, who slowly rose to her feet.
"ENOUGH!!!" Morgana roared, shoving Sierra to the side.
"Fight her!" Xena ordered and helplessly watched her lover struggle within herself. "Don't let her win!" I wish I could help you...
"I'm trying..." Sierra whispered. "I'm so tired."
Xena noticed the exhaustion in her sad brown eyes. She finally realized that she's losing the battle, "I love you, Sierra..."
Morgana struggled and finally took control over their body. She shoved the exhausted Sierra into her prison again. Then slammed the door and locked it behind her. "Ahhh...how touching..." Morgana grumbled as her eyes returned to black.
Morgana sighed, "The one and only!"
"You're not going to get away with this!" she warned.
"Oh, but I will...see I might have something that you hold dear," Morgana evilly grinned back.
"Maybe..." she shrugged and sighed, "Either way, I'm outta here!" Morgana flipped backward, then bolted into the safety of the forest.
"This isn't over!" Xena decreed and ran back to the camp. I left her there...alone. She entered it and noticed that Gabrielle was nowhere to be found. "NO!" Xena roared, echoing throughout the still night.
Morgana stopped in her tracks and listened to her cries. "I guess she knows..." she smirked, entering a mouth of a large cave and disappeared.
"Humgh!" grunted a tied up and gagged Gabrielle.
"So, did you miss me?" Morgana asked as she lit a torch.
The light illuminated this dark and otherwise dreary place. Gabrielle was on the floor struggling with the ropes. "Ohmph..."
"I can't understand you dear," Morgana walked up to her and ripped the gag off. "There..."
"Sierra, fight her!"
"Sierra's not here, little girl..." Morgana informed and roughly caressed her cheek. "Hum...your a cutie!" Her lust for young flesh over powered all her other thoughts.
Gabrielle noticed this and pled, "Please, you don't want to do this!"
"Maybe..." Morgana shrugged. She lifted Gabrielle to her feet, roughly sat her on a rock and lustfully smiled. "And then again, maybe I will!" she leaned over and forcefully kissed her. I can feel Gabrielle's will weakening...awww, she wants this too... Morgana broke the kiss and whispered, "So, does Xena make you feel this way?"
Gabrielle's startled and blurted out, "No! We're just friends!" God...how could I let her kiss me and I kissed her back. Xena's going have my butt...but, the raw hunger. I've never experienced that before...and she's just so damn attractive. Am I blushing?
"STOP IT!!! LEAVE HER ALONE!" roared Sierra.
"I'm just having a little fun!" Morgana innocently expressed, then ran her finger along Gabrielle's shoulder. "She's so beautiful...I just can't keep my hands off."
"Mother, please give me strength!" Sierra begged, kicking the cell door down and bolting out. She rushed her from behind and tackled her to the ground.
Morgana's knocked to the ground by an unseen entity. "NO!!!" she yelled, continuing to struggle with Sierra.
"What the?" Gabrielle noticed Morgana struggling. Realizing with who and began to cheer, "GET HER SIERRA!!"
Xena followed Morgana's tracks as they lead her towards the cave. She stopped and examined the area for any traps, which there were none. Suddenly, she heard Gabrielle's voice and smiled. "She's here..." Then she silently entered and examined the shadowy room.
Gabrielle continued watching Morgana's fight and roared, "Take her out, Sierra!!!"
Morgana's thrown against the stonewall and landed on her rump. "YOU BITCH!!!"
"GET OUT OF MY BODY!!!" Sierra decreed, kicking her in the gut.
"NEVER!" she retorted, spitting in her face and laughed.
Xena slowly crept up from behind, then covered Gabrielle's mouth and hushed her, "Shhh..."
Gabrielle's startled, then relaxed against her, "Xena..."
Xena pulled out her dagger, cutting the rope that tied her legs together. Then she proceeded to do the same with rope that bounded her wrists.
"No problem..." Xena expressed and gestured for them to go, "We'd better go.."
Gabrielle nodded and exited the cave.
Xena observed her leave and whispered, "Sierra..." She turned back to the Sierra and Morgana's fight. Fight her love! You can beat her... Then she silently vacated the scene too.
Morgana kicked Sierra in the face and executed back flip in order to distance herself. "You're going to die!" she barked out, noticing that Gabrielle's ropes were the only things left. "NO!!" she yelled and bolted after her.
Sierra blocked her path, "You'll have to get past me!"
"FINE, BY ME!" she roared, assaulting her with a series of punches.
She blocked them all and delivered one to her gut. This caused Morgana to double over in pain. Sierra kneed her in face, flipped backward and landed hard on her stomach.
Morgana slowly got to her feet and rushed at her again.
Sierra stepped out of her way, roughly shoving her out the mouth of the cave. "That outta hurt..." she grimaced and followed her out.
Morgana landed on her face in front of Xena and Gabrielle. She slowly got up and grumbled, "Going somewhere?"
"Yeah, we're leaving!" Gabrielle retorted with a punch to her face.
A surprised Xena, "WOW...nice job!"
Morgana's head jerked to the right and groaned in discomfort. "Stupid bitch!"
Sierra picked her up and warned, "Don't disrespect a Queen!"
A loud bellowing voice of Ares roared, "THAT'S ENOUGH!"
A bolt of lightening struck Morgana, causing Sierra's soul to be thrown from her body. Her translucence form landed a few feet from Xena and Gabrielle. She slowly got up and turned to Morgana.
Morgana bowed to his voice, "I'm sorry, Ares..."
"GET TO THE BUSINESS AT HAND!" he ordered.
"YOUR NOT TAKING BY BODY!" decreed Sierra, leaping towards her.
Morgana raised her hand as a ball of red light struck Sierra in the chest. She flew back, crashing hard to the ground and caused her to be knocked out. "Later..." she grinned, disappearing in a flash of light along with Gabrielle.
"XENA!" Gabrielle's voice echoed.
"GABRIELLE!" Xena shouted, "Sierra..." she whispered, then tried to help her up. Her hands went right through her body, touching the ground beneath her and sighed, "What am I going to do?"
Another bright light appeared before them as Artemis stepped out. "She needs to find a host soon..."
"Or she'll be lost forever..." Xena finished. "Where's Gabrielle?"
"Yes," Artemis replied, then knelt next to her baby. "She's with Ares...he won't touch her. If he knows what's good for him!"
"I'm ready..." Xena informed.
"Then, so be it!" she decreed and began to chant. Artemis placed her right hand on Xena's heart and with her left, she placed it over Sierra's.
A bright light engulfed her soul and transposed her into Xena's awaiting body. The force of another soul entering her, caused her body to jerk and fall.
"Are you all right?"
Xena nodded, "Yeah...I think so." She slowly sat up and felt a little woozy. "A bit nauseated...thou."
"It's your body's reaction to another entity other than yours," Artemis revealed with a small smile, "It will pass..." Her smile faded, "You have until the next full moon to get her back to her body."
"Two days?" she sighed, raising a brow, "And after that?"
"She'll roam the earth for all of eternity and never find peace."
"I won't let that happen..." Xena decreed, as she slowly got to her feet.
Artemis rose and caressed her cheek, "Now, rest Xena you both need it."
An overwhelming feeling of complete exhaustion over took her entire being. "Why am I suddenly, so tired..."
"Come with me my child," Artemis advised, wrapping her arm around her and suddenly disappearing.
"Where are we going?"
"Some place safe," Artemis revealed.
They reappear in a homely cabin. Artemis approached the fireplace with a wave of her hand, a fire appeared. She smiled and glanced around the room, "I raised my little one up here."
Memories of a five year old; a girl full of life and joy, "Mommy, guess what I found!" Sierra cried and handed her an emerald.
"It's so beautiful!" Artemis replied, picking her up. They hugged for a moment as tears of joy fell from Artemis's eyes.
"Nice," Xena grinned and scanned the room. So, this where she goes...suddenly, visions of a little Sierra; running round the room, playing and jumping, being chased by her beautiful mother. Wow...this must be her memories. She glanced over at Artemis and noticed that she too was reliving her own memories. "You're so beautiful..."
Artemis turned to her and smiled, "Why thank you, Xena."
"Your welcome," she walked past her, then entered another room. Feels like home... "Is this my room?" she inquired. Where'd that come from? Hello...she's inside of me. What's mine is hers and what's hers is mine.
"Sierra's," she nodded, "Since, she's part of you...yes it is." Artemis entered the room and pulled down the hides for her. "Here, sleep for a while. You're going to have a very busy day ahead of you."
"Thank you, Artemis..." Xena expressed, walking over to the bed and sat down.
"If you need anything, just call me..." she advised and left the room. "Sweet dreams, little one..." she whispered and gently closed the door behind her.
Xena removed her boots, armor and leathers. Then hopped into bed and covered herself with the large hides. Ahhh...now this is warm... Within a moment she's fast asleep.
Sierra lazily sat in the tall grass. Enjoying the view of a picturesque valley, without a care in the world.
Xena came up from behind her and sat down. "Hello beautiful," she whispered, then wrapped her strong arms around her and pulled her closer to her. "I've missed you..."
She turned and kissed her cheek. "I'm always with you love," she grinned. "So, how does it feel to have me within you?"
"Feels good," she purred with a smile and added, "I feel as though I'm now complete."
Sierra grinned, "Good...that's how I'm feeling now. I guess that means something..."
"It means that we're meant for one another."
"I know so..." Xena nodded, leaning over and kissed her neck.
Artemis glided over to the fireplace and picked up the emerald. You're so beautiful... Oh, how are we going to get her back into her body? She carried it to a rocking chair and sat down. Her memories came flooding back to her.
"It called to me," she smiled.
"What did it say Sierra?"
"It said..." she tried to remember the words, "Oh! That it belongs to me and one day it will..."
"Go on little one," she inquired further.
"Bring two halves into one!" Sierra spoke up with a grin.
"That's it!" exclaimed Artemis as she disappeared.
"YOU DID WHAT?" he roared and began to pace.
"I kicked her out," Morgana yawned and stretched.
"She was getting in the way!"
He stared over at her, "So? I thought you were so strong?"
Morgana shrugged, "Well, I guess I was weak then...this possession thing is a very tiring experience."
"THAT'S NO EXCUSE!"
"Well, I'm sorry then!" she sighed, glancing over at a tied up Gabrielle.
"THIS ISN'T SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN!" he bellowed as a ball of fire formed within his hands. He glared over at her then threw it into the fireplace behind him. Causing the already burning fire to grow bigger and brighter. Ares tried to calm down, "I wanted you to help guide her towards my way."
"I know..." she rolled her eyes. "She's a goodie two shoes!"
Gabrielle silently listened to their argument. Goodie two shoes? Where'd that come from? I wonder where Xena and Sierra are doing?
"Ares, her heart's full of goodness. I tried to-"
"ENOUGH EXCUSES!" Ares decreed and sat down in his throne. "The deal was to break her spirit. So, I could win her over. Not to kick her soul out..."
"Why don't we get the Ancient one-"
"NO!" he barked out and ordered, "You have one day to get her soul back into her body!"
"WHAT?" Morgana gasped, "That's not enough time!"
"THAT'S PLENTY OF TIME!" he retorted. She only has two days before she'll be lost forever...that's not going to happen!
"By the gods...why does she mean so much to you?" Ares's glared over at a silent Gabrielle and whispered, "She just does..."
"IS SHE YOUR WHORE?" she inquired and taunted, "Does she satisfy you more than all the others?"
"NO!!!" an angry Ares shouted. Suddenly, he leapt from his throne and grabbed her by her shirt. Then brought her to his eye level and roared, "DON'T YOU EVER DISRESPECT MY DAUGHTER IN MY PRESENCE AGAIN!" His eyes turned fiery red, "DO YOU UNDERSTAND?"
Morgana nodded in agreement, "I'm sorry, Ares..."
Gabrielle's eyes bulged at the news. Ares is Sierra's father? In the name of Zeus...of all the people...Her scroll is about to become a series...it's really not my place...but this is good material!
He dropped her and she fell to her knees. "You have one day," Ares advised, "Only then, you shall have the sacred word in which to call forth the Ancient."
"Fine..." Morgana rose to her feet, scowling at Gabrielle and growled, "What about her?"
Ares turned his attention to their silent witness. "Oh, I'm going to keep her here with me. I don't want you getting any ideas of trying to conjure the Ancient without me..." he illustrated and walked over to her. All his attention was on her now, "Now about you..."
"Please, Ares..." she begged, "I won't tell her, I promise!"
"I know..." Ares pulled her closer to him and whispered, "Sleep...when you wake you won't remember what just took place."
"What..." she was suddenly overcome by a drowsiness and yawned. Then she fell into his awaiting arms asleep.
Morgana stormed out of his temple in search of Sierra's soul. "Where am I going to find it?" Where would I go? Humm...a safe place...someone who would keep me safe... "Xena!" Who else would help me...the amazons? Yeah...but, who else? Ahh... "Artemis!" This won't be as hard as I thought! She then bolted toward the nearest temple of Artemis, which was two candle marks away.
TWO CANDLEMARKS LATER
Morgana rushed into the temple and called out, "ARTEMIS!!!" She glanced around the room and yelled out, "WHERE ARE YOU?"
A priestess appeared in front of her. "Can I help you?" she inquired politely and recognized who this wild woman was. "Sierra?" she smiled, "What can I do for you?"
Morgana turned to her and backhanded her. "Nothing..." she smirked and decreed, "IF YOU DON'T SHOW YOURSELF, OR I'LL KILL YOUR PRIESTESS!" She grabbed her by the throat then, placed her dagger next to her soft neck.
"Leave her be..." a soft, but commanding voice warned. A bright light appeared before her and Artemis stepped out. "What do you want?"
"Good," Morgana evilly smiled, roughly shoving her to the side. "I want Sierra's soul..." she revealed as she put the dagger away.
Artemis glared over at her and stated, "And I'm going to give it to you?"
Morgana turned to leave and enlightened, "Well, I guess your daughter is never going to find her body in time..."
"You wouldn't do that!"
Morgana shrugged, "You never know, what I'm going to do..."
"WAIT!" Artemis plead and sighed, "All right...I'll give her to you."
Morgana grinned, "That's better...meet me at the ruins at dawn."
"Fine..." Artemis replied, lowering her head in defeat.
"Oh, if you try and trick me...I'll bolt and your never be with your precious little girl again!" she warned.
Artemis nodded in agreement and watched her leave. "Now that's done..." she whispered. A smile formed as she walked into the light and disappeared, "Now, to the second part..."
JUST BEFORE DAWN
"Where is she?" Xena sighed and began to pace.
"She'll be here..."
"I don't like this..." Xena grumbled.
"It'll be fine...my mother has it all figured out."
Artemis appeared before her and smiled, "Are you ready?"
Xena nodded, "Yes..."
"Here take this," Artemis handed her an emerald necklace.
"Go on and put it on..." gestured Artemis.
"It's the emerald...the one I found when I was little!"
"Really?" Xena examined it and felt the purity of it. Goodness...it overwhelmed my entire being...
"Go on Love, put it on..."
Morgana was sitting on a stone, waiting impatiently for her guests to show. If they don't show soon...
Artemis and Xena appeared before her.
Artemis sighed, "I told you we'd be here."
"Where's Sierra's soul?"
"Inside me," Xena responded abruptly and stepped forward. A beautiful emerald necklace hung from her neck as it gleamed towards her.
The necklace began to call to her. "I am yours..." it plead, "take me and I am yours."
Morgana studied the emerald and smirked, "Give me that necklace!"
"Oh, this thing?" Xena retorted and held it up to her.
"It only leaves my presence, when Sierra's back in her body," Xena decreed, taking another step forward.
Morgana turned to Artemis and grumbled, "Let's get to it...".
"So, it shall be..." she acknowledged with a smile, "Are you ready?"
"I'll be with you soon, Lover."
Xena nodded, "Yes..."
"Yes..." growled Morgana.
Artemis stepped between the two and placed her hands upon their chests. Be strong little one...
A ball of white light was taken from Xena's body. Her body jerked from the sensation of it being taken. I feel so torn and separated... She fell to her knees in pain and in the loss. You will always be part of me... Tears of sorrow fell from her deep blue eyes.
The ball of light traveled through Artemis's body into Morgana's.
Her body began to jerk and spasms at the entering of this familiar entity. The pain of its warmth caused her to fall to her knees too. "ARES IT'S DONE!!!" she cried out and glared over at Xena. "Now, hand me that necklace!" she ordered and held out her hand.
Xena took the off the necklace and placed it in her awaiting hands. "This is far from being over..." she warned under her breathe, rising to her feet and patiently watched her.
"Be strong, Xena..." Artemis whispered within her.
Morgana ignored her warning and stood up. She rolled her eyes and grumbled, "Whatever..." as she held the emerald up to the Sun. She then put necklace on, feeling it's warmth flowing through her body and roared, "ITS POWER IS NOW MINE!!!"
The emerald pulsated and glowed brighter with each beat of her heart.
A soft voice whispered, "I shall bring together two halves..."
Morgana tried to pull the necklace from her chest, but couldn't. "WHAT'S GOING ON?"
Xena continued to stare over at her and shrugged, "I don't know..." She turned to Artemis and inquired, "Do you know?"
She shrugged too and replied, "Not a clue..."
The voice added, "with the halves..."
The emerald began to levitate above her as it burned itself off the necklace.
"You called..." Ares appeared to the right of Morgana, turning his attention to the glowing emerald and gasped, "What in the name of Zeus?"
"STAY OUT OF THIS, ARES!" Artemis warned, raising her hand towards him.
He held his hands up, "All right..." Ares took a step back and grinned, "I will, chill sis..."
"DO SOMETHING!!!" Morgana yelled and tried to reach for him, but her body wouldn't respond.
"Sorry..." he shrugged, "Can't help ya!"
The voice continued, "together they..."
It fired a green bolt of light into her body, which reached into Morgana's soul. "NOOO!!!!" she roared. The magical gem absorbed her evil soul and imprisoned her within in it. The green light pulsated one last time and died out. The gem fell to the ground and began to shimmer in the morning Sun.
Sierra's lifeless body fell to the ground in a heap.
Xena was instantly at her side and cradled her in her arms. "Sierra...wake up!" she shouted, looking over at Artemis, "Why isn't she moving?"
"I don't know," Artemis replied and knelt next to her, "Come on little one...wake up!"
Tears streamed from her sad eyes as she called to her, "Sierra, don't you dare leave me again!" She pulled her closer to her chest and kissed her forehead. "Do you hear me?" as she kissed her cheek, "Come back to me..." Then she ever-so softly kissed her lips and whispered, "I love you..."
Ares noticed the dark gem as it shimmered and picked it up. Without warning it started to glow again. Thus, burning his hand as he instinctively dropped it again. "WHAT THE?" he grumbled.
The voice finished, "Shall create one whole!"
A green ball of light shot out, flew around everyone and entered Sierra's body. Her body glowed as her soul entered her once more. She then gasped for her first breathe of air and opened her eyes.
"SIERRA!" Xena greeted with a hug and a smile.
"My baby..." Artemis sighed.
Sierra shielded her eyes from the bright sun and whispered, "Am I home?"
"Yes, little one you are!" Artemis hugged her and kissed her cheek. "I'll leave you two alone," she whispered then, smiled over at Xena.
"Thank you," Sierra grinned and turned to Xena, "And thank you."
"Your welcome..." A smiling Xena leaned over and passionately kissed her. The kiss overtook them both as they embraced one another.
Artemis reached over and picked up the dark emerald. "Thank you..." she expressed and placed it into a pouch. Then she glanced over at her brother and noticed a small smile, "Ares?"
Ares broke from his train of thought and shrugged, "WHAT?"
"Was that a smile?" she inquired as a door of light appeared next to them.
He shook his head, "No way..."
"Yeah, right!" she laughed and added, "Admit it, your getting soft!" She entered the light and disappeared within it.
Ares turned and knelt next to Xena. "About that immortal thing..." he smiled, "Nada..." Suddenly, remembering someone, "Oh...your talkative little blond is resting at my temple." Then he rose, stepping into the light and roared, "I'm not getting soft!"
"Let me help you," Xena advised, helping her up.
"Thanks," she stretched, "Well, Lover..." Sierra ran her fingers through her hair and grinned, "We have a day's walk ahead of us!"
A mischievous smile spread across Xena's face, "What ever shall we do?"
Sierra shrugged, "I don't know..."
They began their new journey down the dirt road; laughing and enjoying one another's company.