The Thread

Disclaimer: Xena, Gabrielle, Eve, et. al. are characters belonging to MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. There be subtext here folks, this story implies a loving relationship between two of my favorite women. If the idea of said women deeply in love upsets you, go visit the lovely works in General fiction. A little language is here as well, but I think you'll find its use appropriate.

This one is based on one of my crazy 'ham-sandwich-and-rootbeer' dreams (hey, I can actually get something out of them other than, ummm, INTERESTING encounters...) These gals always seem to show up when I need them the most, wish they would hang around more often though. You're beautiful ladies, I loves ya. Timeline, hmmm, takes place just after "Motherhood". For those of you who haven't seen all episodes previous to that one, there may be spoilers here and there.

Any constructive comments are welcome at the e-mail address below.

This is dedicated to all writers of fanfic wherever you may be, - writer's block is HELL! To my online bro, the MartMan - Viva the Relationship! To Eptalk, thanks for bringing back my faith in the love between a warrior and bard when I most needed it. To my main galpal Nightsong, always trying to make you proud. To Renee O'Connor, for dazzling me with with beauty, and charm (wellll, and also for providing me with some memorable moments during R.E.M.!) And to my best friend D, you are a part of all I do.

Chapter 1:

Okay, I really need someone to cut me off now. It's four am, and I'm still on the Internet. Worse, I have to be up at six for work. Oh, how I could write if there was nothing but Xena in my life...

Who am I really? Ahhh, just one more wannabe bard. Trying to make it in a rewarding enough, but ever changing biz. Fanfic pages? Yeah, I've scoured the majority. Written letters to my alt. Heroines, worshipping their work? Hell yeah. I should sleep more, but I have to absorb it all - the power, the passion, the whole nine yards. I think I'll turn in now, though. The cookie box is empty and my computer screen is looking like my 5- year-old cousin's first attempts at art.


With a few quick keystrokes, Brenna logged off the online discussion channel and shut down her laptop. She fumbled for the light switch to the small black lamp on her computer desk, and with slow, heavy movements, removed her jean shorts and white T-shirt for bed. She slipped on some oversized sleeping boxers that her Gram had bought her years back, and a long flowing nightshirt prominently featuring Disney's '101 Dalmatians.' After mumbling a few short sentences to fulfill her evening prayers, she slid under the thin sheet covering her bed. It was too hot for a comforter, and her fan was turned up to the highest level. A shower might have been welcome about now, but she figured she'd drop from the effort and knock herself unconscious on the shower floor.

She rolled around a bit to find a comfortable position, then lay on her stomach, snuggling her head on her dark green pillow and burrowing her left arm under it. Letting out a contented sigh, her blood-shot eyes closed to welcome the wonderful world of sleep.


'Pok, pok, pok....'

What is that??? Brenna asked herself, as she struggled to lift her head from the pillow. Who would be making noise in my room at this hour of the night? Brown eyes shot open in shock. Oh my God, did somebody break in? Nah, the security system would have gone on full-blown red alert. So, what...?

Slowly, propping herself up on her pillow, Brenna turned her head to the left, and the other half of her bedroom. Oh boy...

As much as her brain tried to register it as sleep haze or distorted vision (her contacts were out,) she could clearly see a tall, dark-haired brunette standing by her computer in full leather outfit. And not just any outfit...


It sure LOOKED like Xena. The moonlight streaming in through Brenna's open window outlined a graceful, finely chiseled face and blue eyes so dark one could barely tell what color they were at all. Her sword as always at her back, and the recently renovated chakram on her belt. Her brow was furrowed in what seemed like curiosity and puzzlement, as she tapped the knuckle of her right index finger on Brenna's darkened computer screen.

'Pok, pok, pok,'

Almost immediately, the dark figure felt Brenna's eyes looking her up and down, and she slowly turned her head to regard the equally dark-haired brunette on the bed. For long seconds, neither said a word.

"Xena," a smooth, female voice called, "just look at this!"

Both women turned towards the source of the quiet tone and Brenna saw a short, svelte blonde standing by the writer's workdesk. She must have been about the sleepy woman's height, and her light brown leathers with an ingenious cross tie in the back outlined a slightly muscled, but none the less admirable feminine form. Brenna's eyes widened slightly and she felt her already dry mouth take on a sandpaper quality.


The short-haired woman had become very interested in Brenna's can of pencils and small sheets of paper on her desk. "Look Xe, it's like my quills and ink, only without the ink bottle. What an odd yellow color. And look at her writing materials. So fine and soft, not so much like my scrolls..." Gabrielle turned around to show her joyous find to her companion and immediately noticed that she too was being watched.

"Oh!" the bard dropped the pencils and paper that she had been so openly admiring. "I...uhhh...we hope we didn't scare you."

Scared doesn't even BEGIN to describe how disturbed I am.

The sleepy woman looked over at Xena. "Are you guys know...the Warrior Princess, and..."

The tall woman's face curled into an amused expression. "That would be me, yes, and this is Gabrielle, bard of Poteidaea."

Brenna sat up. "Oh, I know who you both are, I was just checking to make sure I wasn't going insane..."

Gabrielle stepped closer and tentatively kneeled by the bed very close to the nervous woman's face. "And why exactly do you think YOU'RE the one who's crazy? We weren't here a candlemark ago and all of a sudden were in this odd little room of yours and wondering how in Tartarus we got here."

It took the now fully awakened woman a moment to register a normal, coherent thought, as she was unable to break away from Gabrielle's intense green eyes. God, those eyes. But if they are, who they say they are, what about LL and ROC? I'm getting a headache. Clearing her throat, she was pleased to find her voice lacking the annoying 'just-woke-up' scratchy quality.

"Well, you're here, you're really here. None of us know why, but just the same, it's a pleasure to meet you both..." She glanced at the red numbers on her white, digital alarm clock. "...Although I wish this meeting could have taken place in the late afternoon." FIVE in the morning? I only slept HOW long? She turned back to Xena and Gabrielle.

Brenna noticed that Xena was very wary of her dark green swivel chair. "Uhh, you can sit in it if you like Xena...can I call you Xena?" Well, that was an idiotic thing to say, she mentally berated herself.

The warrior merely smiled and nodded. Slowly she sat in the chair, only to find in her surprise that she could turn it in any direction or push it off across the carpeted floor. She did so with a grin that Brenna was sure no viewer ever got to see on the show. She spun a few times for good measure then quickly let it stop, just facing Gabrielle and the pair of puzzled brown eyes looking back at her.

"Now THIS is interesting contraption Gabrielle, see how those little cartwheels propel it where I want?" Cute, 'Xena: Warrior Playmate'. For some reason that thought made her think of an equally appealing double entendre which she quickly shook her musings from.

The bard didn't seem too interested in the chair, as much as in the materials she'd dropped. She quickly stood up to retrieve them and placed them almost reverently on Brenna's desk. "Are YOU a bard?" she asked hopefully.

The room's inhabitant sat up in a cross-legged position and thought for a moment. "I'm trying to be. I'm going to college to learn how to be a better one, but I like to write stories, ahh, about you and Xena, for the public and for other bards."

Gabrielle blushed, which Brenna thought was unbelievably adorable, while Xena raised an eyebrow.

The former asked, hoping to change the subject from she and her companion, "College? Is that like a writing school? An academy?" she added, eyes shining at old memories.

"Yeah, just like that. An academy of sorts. Only they don't just specialize in the barding craft, they also teach the foundations of science and mathematics. Other trades as well."

Xena's face began to darken a little, her eyes becoming icy and penetrating.

Uh-oh, what did I say?

"How can you write about us if you've never actually been around to witness the things we've done in the past? You're either very good at following us around or adapting from, maybe copying, Gabrielle's scrolls."

The bard looked shocked, then hurt. Brenna looked up at the warrior in open-mouthed amazement. "NO! That's not it at all! I merely gather inspiration from your show to write a fictional account of an adventure the two of you MIGHT have. I don't take the work of others, and certainly not that of Gabrielle. Why, other than on TV I've never even SEEN one of her scrolls."

Xena looked at her carefully, and to the young woman's relief, saw her anger dissipate. "I believe you're telling the truth. Forgive my reaction but there are few that write so much or so well about our lives as Gabrielle herself. Any other bard hears it second hand from her fine works." The tall woman looked at her best friend with an openly loving and appreciative glance. Brenna smirked. I wish I could have had a camcorder on hand for this moment, just one more piece of evidence of the bond these two have.

What am I thinking? Would anyone online believe a mere tape as proof? They'd think it was some goofy homemade deal, or extra footage swiped from the studio. Let's face it, if the 'The Quest' didn't convince people, nothing will...

"Umm," she quietly interrupted the warm energy between them, "You still don't know who I am. Brenna Reilley - student by day, hostel operator by night."

Xena grinned at the small jab and extended her right hand in greeting, which her grateful admirer shook warmly. Gabrielle did the same, verdant eyes sparkling with friendliness. Brenna decided to be bold and lightly took the blonde woman's strong but soft hand to deposit a light kiss on it. The bard blushed once more, looking quickly to her companion who had raised both eyebrows at the action. The jammy-clad bard smirked at her, letting her know no harm was intended and the warrior quickly winked at her in understanding. Yes, I know she's yours, but that doesn't change any bit that she is GORGEOUS. Just testing a theory, and I am so pleased to find I'm right.

"Now, you mentioned a show about us. Do they re-enact plays in our honor here?" the tall woman asked, confused.

"Not exactly, well...they act out your adventures, which get filmed or captured for all to see through this electronic device over here..." Brenna proudly pointed at her small color set on the shelf. "This is a television set, or a TV for short."

The bard looked eagerly towards the set, but frowned slightly. "I don't see us in that little window."

Brenna scratched the back of her neck in frustration. "No, you gotta turn it on first." And she did so, to the shock of one ex-warlord and one ex-farmgirl. Ignoring the Warner Brothers cartoons on the screen, the student slipped a tape into the VCR beneath the set. She pressed the play button, and turn around to beam at her visitors. They watched in rapt attention as Xena ran along through a grassy setting and took a long, spectacular leap onto a looming ship in the water. Her battle cry in full glory.

The Warrior Princess sat back stunned in her chair, as Gabrielle absently sat on the now unoccupied spot on the bed to watch her life play out on this funny little box.

Brenna wanted to interrupt them for questions or to talk some more, but saw that they wouldn't be budged until the end of the episode. Oh well, let em watch. I'll get them to pay attention to me again when it's over, and I love this episode anyway. The young woman couldn't help but smile as her heroines briefly looked away from the set to gaze at each other affectionately during the reunion scene.

Oh yeah, thought their new friend, This will be fun.

Chapter 2:

It wasn't hard to notice the emotions playing across the two women's features as they finished watching the tape. Fear, disbelief, suspicion - it was all there. Brenna was amused to watch Xena touch the TV screen every now and then to be sure that the things she was seeing weren't solid, weren't real.

Finally, the end credits rolled by and the young woman walked over to shut off the screen.

"That was...magical," Gabrielle murmured after some contemplation at what she had just seen. "You own a visual, a piece of our lives that you can have access to anytime. Forgive me if that makes me a little self-conscious, Brenna."

Xena's brow was wrinkled in thought. "I don't suppose you could explain how this works?"

"No way," Brenna sighed "That would take me forever, especially since I don't completely know myself. It's what we call here 'the wonders of technology.'" She looked eagerly at her guests. "Ummm...given any thought as to HOW you got here?"

The leather-clad warrior thought for a moment, absently swiveling the green roller chair back and forth.

"There was nothing out of the ordinary going on before this. We were staying at friend's house for the night. I had started to polish my sword, and Gabrielle was taking down one of her new stories. Well, that's what I think she was doing - she sat there so long without writing a word I thought she'd fallen asleep." Xena smirked at her companion still seated on Brenna's bed.

Gabrielle crossed her arms in a mock glower. "I was restructuring ideas in my head, I might have had an easier time concentrating without that little 'shik, shik' sound you were making with your weapons."

Brenna grinned at the small exchange and slowly walked to her bedroom door and locked it. I don't want my roommate to hear this. She's gonna think I'm talkin' to myself or something.

Then she shuffled to her desk to pick up the tear-sheet calendar sitting on it. "Just so's you know, you are somehow on the American continent, across the sea from your homeland, in the year 2000. You are a loooong way from home, my friends."

Said friends seemed startled, even dazed at this news. "That means Eve is still there, by herself," Xena commented softly. From the corner of her eye, Brenna noticed Gabrielle's indifferent look and slight shift of position.

Hoping to relieve some of the growing tension in the room, Brenna hopped over to her laptop. "Uhhh, I wanna show you guys something else."

She turned on the monitor and waited for the Windows screen to pop up. The whirs and beeps prodded Gabrielle to stand up and walk over for a closer look. Finally, Brenna's main screen came up, complete with 'Xena' desk top theme and wallpaper. Both women were amused at the writer's embarrassed flush, as a resounding "Ayiyiyiyiyiyi" sound clip announced the computer as fully on.

"See Xena," the bard poked the taller woman in the ribs, "I knew you would always be remembered, you probably have your own fanclub." At this the Warrior Princess scowled but looked playfully at the blonde.

You have NO idea what sort of a fanclub you BOTH have... mused the jammy-clad writer as she quickly logged onto the Internet and clicked on the Netscape icon.

"Check this out ladies, your one-stop information source on Xena or anything else you like." Brenna beamed. Her guests watched with curiosity as she typed in the URL for the TavernWall chatroom. Then she froze and said thoughtfully, "Wait, you're Greeks right?"

"That's right," Gabrielle raised an eyebrow.

"Than how are you understanding me? I don't speak Greek."

Xena raised an eyebrow. "Well, we assumed that was the case..."

"Can you read what I'm typing out here as well?" Brenna indicated as she entered Gabrielle's name in the blank.

"Yes," the bard smiled indulgently. The warrior just rolled her eyes.

"Okay then. This is what we call a message board. I write notes to other people who love watching Xena," she flushed as said woman smirked. "I mean, the show 'Xena: Warrior Princess.' Then, if these people want to respond they leave ME a note, and it all follows a topic on the same thread."

Brenna briefly showed them how she manipulated and used the mouse as well as the keyboard, to type out her messages. Then she let a round-eyed bard sit in the chair and explore. Xena found more interest in Brenna's stereo system than in the wonders of the net.

Having seen what the remote to the TV had done, she instinctively reached for stereo's control and found the on button on the first try. The blaring sounds of the local rap station filtered through the speakers.

"Almost as bad as Draco," she said absently.

With more patience than she thought she had, the shorter brunette demonstrated how to change the stations or switch to CD player mode with the remote. Xena finally settled for a channel playing Bonnie Raitt's "Somethin' to Talk About". Brenna controlled the urge to giggle as she turned back to the computer to see what the bard was up to.

What she found was a fuming young woman angrily typing out a message on the keys. Brenna quickly checked to see what topic she was responding to -

Bile: Warrior Bard - Good or Extremely Bad for the Relationship?


"Gabrielle, what are you doing???" Brenna asked with evident fear in her voice.

"Telling these people that I've found my path. That I fought like Tartarus for Xena and her child. Out of love, not savagery! Love, not blood-lust!"

A casual glance at Xena told the writer that she wasn't listening to anything else but the stereo, so she easily continued to speak to the bard.

"I know this makes you angry Gabrielle. Sometimes it makes me see red too. But didn't you read the little disclaimer before clicking on the topic? You shouldn't be in here if you are easily hurt by other people's opinions. And doesn't everbody have a right to those? It's not for either of us to say that any one statement is wrong - just as long as you and I know what we believe with regards to your relationship with Xena."

Gabrielle wrestled with her temper for a few more seconds, then sheepishly pressed the backspace key to erase her lengthy and explosive response. She asked with a blush "Is EVERYBODY on the...uhhh...Internet aware of how she and I really feel for each other?"

Brenna sighed and as a comforting gesture (OK, also as an excuse-to-touch gesture) put her left arm lightly around the bard's shoulders. "Most of us who watch know that the bond between you two is so strong it surpasses this life and the next. We know you're soulmates. I'm also inclined to think that there is romance in there somewhere...isn't that right?"

Gabrielle's luminous green eyes met warm brown and she nodded with conviction. She briefly looked at Xena, still bobbing her head to the music as she lay sprawled on the bed. "She's my entire world, Brenna. I couldn't live without her. But lately..."

She looked like she was going to cry. Her new friend gazed thoughtfully at her and waited for the bard to collect her thoughts before continuing.

"Sometimes I feel like these people here," she motioned to the screen, "are right. Not just about my 'warrior' attitude but about a lot of things that have been going on lately. Listen, this time jump was especially shocking for us both because back in out time, we had already jumped 25 years into the future from our PREVIOUS time. We lost a daughter, a friend and possibly both our families in that leap. And we've never talked about it."

Brenna began some soothing motions with her left hand on the bard's arm, now feeling really guilty about not having warned the bard just what was on the MSB.

"We don't talk about ANYTHING anymore. We just let it happen, never mention it again, and just try to forget - move on. But I think neither of us has moved on..." Gabrielle now struggled to keep her composure, as small tears streaked down her face. "Brenna, she doesn't look at me the way she used to. She doesn't touch me or hold me when I really need it. She doesn't really talk about how she feels. She almost killed me not too long ago because..."

"I know what happened, Gabrielle. The chakram blow and death of the gods, right?" Brown eyes looked sympathetically at her. Funny, you'd think with all of Xena's super senses she would hear this conversation. But she hasn't said anything or moved to anything but the music. Maybe she's ignoring the problem? Or too afraid to address it?

The blonde woman looked again with suspicion at the writer, probably questioning again JUST how much this person knew about her life with Xena. She swallowed and paused before speaking again.

"Well know. But do you have any idea how it felt when she wouldn't speak to me about it? Just ignore it and focus on Eve? I need her just as much as I used to, maybe more. But these days her thoughts aren't directed at me anymore."

Brenna's heart felt heavy. If she didn't already know, she could easily see what the blonde was feeling. Hell, she'd seen how Xena dragged her though the mud like so much baggage while cradling her daughter. She understood the power of motherhood, but still...

Gabrielle wiped her eyes and looked painfully at Brenna, who in turn scratched the back of her neck uncertainly. What to say?

They were interrupted by Xena's cry of astonishment.

"Hey, I'm fading away!"

The bard and the short brunette watched as Gabrielle was also beginning to fade away. "Brenna!" she cried, reaching out for her new friend's arm. To their horror, Brenna also began to fade away along with her heroines.

This is just NOT my night...

Chapter 3:

An almost blinding light seemed to swirl around Brenna's eyes, preventing her from seeing what was going on. Her stomach was in the process of doing a jig, and her head felt like it had been hit by a soccer ball. Again.

All at once, the light began to fade and the young writer cautiously opened her eyes to find...


Endless rows of trees dotting the landscape and a huge mountain far off in the distance. She was breathing in the sweetest air imaginable, and her hands softly gripped a bed of long, lush grass. Is this New Zealand? Brenna wondered in awe. Or perhaps...

"Xe, we're home again!"

With a gasp, Brenna turned, still on all fours, to the right where Gabrielle was picking herself up and dusting off her skirt. For a moment, their eyes met and an equal amount of shock registered on either woman's face. They were apparently still having the same dream, or the most frightening experience of their lives.

For her part, Xena was standing not too far ahead of them, her eyes scanning the surroundings to be sure they were indeed where they should be. She also turned to look at Brenna, but simply raised a curious eyebrow.

"Gabrielle," she mused, "How exactly is our friend supposed to get back home now?"

Good question. Here's mine...WHY DID I HAVE TO TRAVEL BACK IN TIME IN MY PAJAMAS?!?!?

Gabrielle smirked as she looked Brenna up and down, apparently reading her thoughts. She ran a hand through her shaggy blonde locks pensively.

"I think you and I both know that normally the gods are behind something like this, warrior. But there's only Aphrodite now, and what reason would she have to play with time?"

Brenna frowned and looked to Xena.

"Can she do that?"

The tall woman answered almost right away. "No, I don't think that particular talent is included in the Goddess of Love's repertoire. No, there's something else going on which I can't put my finger on just now."

Brenna herself was running through the possibilities in her head. Ares can be ruled out, but what does that leave us with? C'mon bard, think creatively, think cosmically, think...

"I think the first thing we need to do is get Brenna out of those clothes." Gabrielle remarked, obviously amused. "I'm not sure the modern world is ready for her, ahh, fashion sense."

The student's cheeks flushed in embarrassment, as she gingerly lifted herself off the ground and removed what she could of the dirt from her nightclothes. Then, brown eyes almost popped open. "Does this mean I get to wear...leather?"

Xena chuckled. "Well, there is that. Or how about a nice colorful blouse and a long, flowing skirt?" she shot a teasing glance at Gabrielle, who easily returned a mock glare at her love.

"If it's all the same to you, let's find a tanner." Brenna strode purposefully a few steps to the left. Suddenly she stopped, and looked back to regard her companions once more.

"Uhhh, can I borrow some dinars?"


It didn't take long for bard and warrior to get their bearings and locate a town close to where they had originally been staying. Immediately seeking out a clothing shop, they quickly ushered their gaping friend inside. On the walls hung many, many kinds of garments, uniforms and suits to choose from, all situated according to occupation or postion.

Gabrielle was the first to speak up. "I can help you with this Brenna, I have a good eye for style and color. And maybe while I'm here I could pick up a few things we've been needing at the house..."

The Warrior Princess groaned audibly. "I'll meet you both outside at the tavern when you're done. Have fun." She quickly turned on her heel and made her escape.

The bard twisted her lips into an indulgent smile. "Chicken."

The dark-haired woman giggled at the jab, but soon found out why Xena had left so quickly.

And wondered why she hadn't gone with her.

Gabrielle took her time, pointing everything out to her new friend and explaining the benefits each item could have. Even going as far as to calculate how much she could talk the price down with the vendor to suit their purse. Geez, and I thought my sister was a shopping freak. This woman has it down to an art!

Finally, she was able to decide upon on outfit that she liked and that Gabrielle didn't frown at. It was composed of soft gray leathers with simple black boots, silver-colored arm bands and a black leather belt with a circular buckle to hold the vest and snug pants neat and tight. The shirt itself had no sleeves, exposing what Brenna considered her frail arms to the world. A very modest cleavage cut and a gray hair-tie completed the look as she anxiously examined herself in the mirror. Gabrielle smiled approvingly.

Whooo, not bad. This is no imitation wear, either. Man, why can't stuff like this be available for conventions?

She was feeling a little guilty about having Gabrielle pay for it, but there was no other choice and the blonde woman didn't seem to mind. Hell, she'd already convinced the shopkeeper to accept 20 dinars less than it was worth.

Then it was simply a matter of tagging along after the bard, who obtained a new set of scrolls, ink, and an assortment of goods for meals and weapon cleaning. Kinda like an ancient Wal-Mart, only without lines, without clumsy shopping carts...

Just then a large man, smelling of weeks old ale stepped up from behind and made a grab for Brenna's arm. He never even got hold of the fabric as Gabrielle casually slipped a sai out of her boot, and bringing her arm back, knocked the idea out of his head soundly. Thump.

And without cheerful 'Welcome to Wal-mart' greeters.


The walk to the cottage that Gabrielle and Xena had spoken about must not have taken all that long. Still, their young companion found that it was energy draining to lift a boot-clad foot, and that the hot sun loved to feast on leather. She wiped the sweat out of her eyes for the hundredth time, and groaned in relief when she finally saw that they had arrived at their destination.

They stepped inside and as Gabrielle began to lay her purchases on a large wooden table, Brenna collapsed in a nearby chair. Xena began to call for her daughter.

"Eve, we're back! Where are you? You'll never believe what we picked up..." The last being said with almost certain amusement in her voice. The student glared at Xena's retreating back and idly scratched at her leather-clad thigh. This type of wear just wasn't as glamorous as she'd imagined.

Gabrielle's green eyes regarded her with humor, but also warmth - she understood how strange the experience was for such a one. A different time, a different way of life, it was probably way too much to take in a couple of weeks, let alone a day. As the dark-haired woman closed her eyes, the bard looked at the neatly folded up print pajamas she had tucked away with the goods. She assumed the creatures depicted on them were dogs of some kind, but - how strange - with black spots covering their coats.

Xena interrupted their few minutes of peace, as she strode back into the room. "Eve's gone, Gabrielle." Her blue eyes were obviously clouded with worry and fear.

Her companions sat up. "Let's not panic, she's probably not far away, Xena. And besides, Eve is a full-grown woman who can take care of herself." Brenna noted a slightly bitter edge to the words.

"Yes, but she's unstable, you know that. What if she's gotten herself into trouble? I'm going to go look for her." The warrior opened the door to leave, and then paused to look back at the woman she had once called soulmate. "You comin'?"

Their audience of one could tell that Gabrielle wanted to say yes, to be with the woman she loved as she always had been. But instead she looked to the floor briefly, and green eyes filled with confusion and pain.

"You go. Brenna can go with you if she wants to. I'll stay here and see if she doesn't return before you get back."

For a moment, sky blue eyes implored with the blonde woman to be by her side, but as quickly as the emotion had surfaced, she pushed it back and clenched her jaw in determination.

"Alright, I'll go then. Brenna?"

The student swallowed a bit in discomfort, than looked to Gabrielle for permission. The bard nodded her head, and forgetting her exhaustion, the dark-haired woman moved to join the warrior by the door. As Xena stepped outside, Brenna looked back trying to convey reassurance in that everything would be alright when they got back.


The bard smiled and watched her friend set out after her lover. When she was sure they had ridden off, she quietly brought her hands up to cover her face and began to sob.

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