Disclaimer: The characters of Xena and Gabrielle and others mentioned,
belong to MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. No infringement on their rights are
Subtext Disclaimer: Yes and lots of it. If you find the idea of a loving relationship between to people of the same sex offensive, go away. If you are under the age of 18, or reside in an area where this type of material is illegal, go away. There are bunches of general fanfic for you out there. Go find it.
Timeline: Sequel to Bodies Change, Love Never Dies.
Note: Okay, okay. I admit it. Its a series. Now read.
Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
A Test Of Faith
Dad, come on. I said I was sorry. Xena rolled her eyes and held the
receiver a few inches away from her ear, listening to her father recite all the negative
attributes of riding a motorcycle across his lawn and tearing up his meticulously kept
Gabrielle sat at the other end of the couch and watched Xenas bare toes, resting in her lap, wiggling with frustration. Smiling wickedly, the bard ran her finger softly over the bottom of Xenas bare foot and chucked when the foot was removed from her lap.
Stop that. Xena hissed, glaring. No, Dad, Im not talking to you. Shaking her head and rolling her eyes for, only the gods know how many times, the warrior went back to listening and sighed.
Taking a sip of her iced tea, Gabrielle put the glass on the table beside the couch and laid her head back. Feeling the stray foot return to her lap, she closed her eyes and rubbed it with her hand. She never learns, Gabrielle thought, as the conversation progressed to the promising stage. Opening her eyes, lifting her head she watched the warrior cover her eyes with her hand. Raising one eyebrow, Gabrielle slowly started her hand up the warriors bare leg and leaned over, placing kisses just behind the trail her hand was blazing.
Xena separated two fingers, looking at the bard, then removed her hand completely, when the sultry look in green eyes made her smile. Grace, are you listening to me? Came a stern voice in Xenas ear. Yea, Dad, Im listening. She lied, as the bard made her way to mid thigh, then onto all fours, crawling seductively to straddle the warriors hips. Look, Dad, Ive got to go. Biting her lip when Gabrielle started to unbutton her shirt and licked her way up Xenas throat to nibble on her earlobe. Gods Slamming the phone down in its cradle, Xena wrapped her arms around Gabrielles waist.
Grace! You ride that beast across my lawn again and Im going to . . . Dad looked at the receiver with disgust. Maggie! He shouted. Your daughter just hung up on me.
Youre gonna be in big trouble. Gabrielle said into Xenas ear, dropping her head to the warriors collarbone, running her tongue up again.
Hell live. Smiling as the bard, reached the bottom button and pulled hard, exposing Xenas bare chest. Closing her eyes, she threw her head back, when Gabrielles hands found her breasts and started kneading gently and her thumbs teased two erect nipples. Hell call back. Whispering in a husky tone.
Gabrielle made her way, kissing and sucking, back down the warriors throat and ran her tongue along a smooth, tan jaw line, coming to rest against two parted waiting lips. Sucking Xenas tongue, as the warrior probed her mouth, the bard slowly began rocking her hips, while teasing the warriors nipples unmercifully, causing Xena to moan loudly.
Lowering her hands, Xena grasped the bards firm buttocks, urging Gabrielle to rock faster. We are worse than rabbits. Whispering between heated kisses, she opened her eyes and smiled.
Taking the warriors bottom lip in her teeth, Gabrielle pulled gently, then released it, to look into pale blue pools. Are you complaining? Pinching one of Xenas nipples between her index finger and thumb.
Yes! I mean no. Seeing the smirk on Gabrielles face. No, not me. Never. No way.
I didnt think so. Lowering her head, the bard ran her tongue lightly across Xenas chin, down her throat, again and down to the space between her breast.
Yesssss? Watching the bards eyes twinkle, she arched a little at Gabrielles touch.
Taking her time, Gabrielle continued letting her tongue explore the warriors cleavage and felt Xenas hips beginning to rock. Lifting her head a bit, she arched one eyebrow and smiled. What do you think about me taking that job at the University? Moving her lips to one breast, circling the nipple with her tongue.
You little hussy. Her hips still rocking, Xena closed her eyes tightly as Gabrielle took the nipple in her mouth and suckled viciously. Gods! Youre wicked.
Thats why you love me. Came a muffled chuckle as Gabrielle took the nipple between her teeth and bit down lightly, causing the warrior to groan and arch backwards, over the arm of the couch.
Xena gripped Gabrielles hips, her fingers digging into the bards jeans, lifting her head, she looked down, as Gabrielle moved to take possession of her other breast. I told you if its what you really wanted, wed work something out. Her voice a husky whisper. Reaching up with one hand, Xena grasped blonde hair, holding the bard to her breast, as she felt Gabrielles hips grinding into hers, through their respective clothing.
Really? Removing her hands, Gabrielle quickly pulled off her sweatshirt and leaned into the warrior, bringing their bare torsos together, breast to breast.
Gods! Gabrielle! Can we please talk about this later? Sucking in air, Xena held her breath as the bards skin began an assault on her senses.
Sure. Gabrielle smiled, letting the subject drop and concentrating on the task at hand. Wrapping her arms around the warriors neck, Gabrielle began thrusting her hips harder and faster, rubbing their bodies together and taking Xenas lips in a crushing kiss.
No, Mom, I didnt hang up. Waiting for her heartbeat to return to normal, Xena ran her fingers through the bards blonde hair. I think we got disconnected. Feeling Gabrielles lips on her neck, she cocked her head, giving the bard better access.
Pulling at the warriors sleeve, she held it as Xena pulled her arm out, then waited for her to switch the phone to the other hand and did the same, dropping the garment to the floor. Scooting back, she straddled the warriors thighs and began unzipping Xenas shorts.
Im sorry Dad thinks that, but Im not ungrateful. Sighing, Xena handed the bard the phone. You tell her.
Laughing, Gabrielle took the phone and put it to her ear. Shes not ungrateful. Handing the phone back as she got a slap on her arm and a glare. Ignoring both, Gabrielle grasped the hem of the shorts and scooting back again, slowly eased the blue shorts and Xenas green undies down the warriors legs.
Ignore her Mom. Scowling at her partner, Xena rolled her eyes. Yes, Mom, I can hear Dad quite clearly from here and Im sorry for putting you in the middle. I didnt mean to tear up the yard and I promise Ill never do it again. Taking more interest in what the bard was doing, Xena watched Gabrielle remove the rest of her own clothing. Mom, uhhh. Losing her train of thought as Gabrielle started kissing her way up her shin. Mom, what? Oh! Dad, sorry. Rolling her eyes, Xena spread her legs as Gabrielle reached her thighs.
Spreading Xenas legs further apart, Gabrielle continued her quest.
No, Dad. Closing her eyes as Gabrielle got even closer, Xena stifled a groan. I dont like answering machines. Biting her lip, when the bard stretched her legs even further apart and bending them, brought her knees to rest on the bards shoulders. Dad, my beeper is going off. Telling a half truth, as the Gabrielles tongue dipped into her center and she started hearing bells. Id better get off now.
Gabrielle rolled her eyes, at the warriors turn of phrase and started flicking her tongue deeper into hot wetness.
Yes, Daddy, I love you too and Im very sorry Bye. Punching a button on the receiver, Xena tossed it over her shoulder.
Picking up the phone, Xena sighed. What is this? Grand Central Station? Walking back to the couch, she wrapped her robe tighter around her, plopped down next to Gabrielle and took a piece of cantaloupe from the bards waiting lips. Chewing slowly, she took a deep breath and pressed a button. Hello.
Gabrielle watched Xenas head fall forward and smiled. Shaking her head, she popped a piece of fruit in her mouth and chewed happily, thanking the gods that her parents lived in another time zone.
Daddy, what a surprise. With none in her voice, Xena closed her eyes.
Gabrielle chuckled when Xena slid sideways, bringing her head to rest on the bards shoulder. Taking pity, Gabrielle shoved a piece of fruit in the warriors mouth and patted her head. By the time, Xena had hung up, again, the bowl had been emptied and rinsed out in the kitchen sink. Taking her place beside Xena, Gabrielle chuckled.
Xena gave her a dirty look.
Dont look at me. I didnt you to hang up and I certainly didnt tell you to do donuts in you parents front yard. Pushing in Xenas bottom lip.
Well you werent helping the situation. Crawling all over me. Taking advantage and pulling my clothes off. Smiling at the memory, despite her mood.
You looked like you needed a change of pace. Smiling, Gabrielle laid her head in Xenas lap.
Speaking of which . . . what was that about taking the University job? Knowing that the bard was hoping shed forgotten the conversation in the heat of passion.
You remembered that, huh? Lowering her eyes, Gabrielle studied her hands.
Despite all the distractions, yes. Running her fingers through the bards hair. Do you really want to take it?
I dont know. Biting a hang nail. Itd mean wed only be able to see each other on weekends. Looking up, Gabrielle searched the warriors eyes. What do you think?
I think that if you want the job, you should take it. Smiling, Xena leaned forward, kissing Gabrielles brow, lightly. Well figure out the details later.
Maybe. Looking at her hands again, Gabrielle bit her lip thoughtfully.
Gabrielle. Whispering, Xena cupped the bards chin, bringing sad green eyes to meet hers. You know you want the job, its something youve been talking about for months. For Zeus sake, take it. Ill be fine here and Ill come up every chance I get. I promise.
Like you promised never to tear up your parents yard for the third time this year? Smiling into blue eyes.
Ill keep this one. Leaning her head down, Xena kissed Gabrielles smile. Dad can resod, I cant get another you.
Gabrielle curled her legs underneath her. Sitting in the darkness of their bedroom, she watched the warrior sleeping, the moonlight playing on her tanned face. Feeling a chill, she wrapped her robe closer around her and sighed. What am I going to do? She whispered. Do I really want to do this? Searching her heart, Gabrielle sighed. Shed wanted this job, even before the dean had offered it, knowing full well what it would mean. The university was over seventy miles away and no matter how she tried to figure it out, she knew there was no way to get around the fact that shed have to move. The class schedule shed been offered, meant shed have to stay in town and could only come home on weekends and even then, it might be every other one. Looking at Xena again, Gabrielle closed her eyes. We finally get to a lifetime where we can spend everyday together and dont waste our lives searching the world for each other and something like this comes up. Shaking her head, she rested her chin on her hand. Xenas doing what she loves and I do love teaching, but is that worth sacrificing what little time we may have in this lifetime being apart? Slowly a tear ran down her cheek as she thought of how many times theyd been forced apart by circumstances beyond their control and how many times theyd spend doing that in the future. Xena fought so hard for these bodies and this life, why cant I be satisfied with what we have? Opening her eyes, as another tear fell, Gabrielle slowly got up and went downstairs. Finding the phone, in the darkness, she dialed a number she knew by heart and waited for the line to pick up.
Hi, its Faith. I didnt wake you did I? Staring at nothing.
No, Faith. I was just going over some paperwork. Whats up? Brian asked, looking at his watch.
I was wondering if I could come to stay with you for a couple of weeks. Biting her lip, Gabrielle closed her eyes.
What has my sister done now? Rolling his eyes, Brian tried to imagine what stupid thing Grace had done this time.
Nothing. Chuckling, Gabrielle opened her eyes. Im thinking about taking that Professorship at the university and I might need someplace to stay while I look for an apartment.
Oh, no. No way. Pointing at the phone, Brians eyes grew wide. Youre not leaving that woman alone for a single minute. Shes a menace as it is, even with you there. You leave her to her own devices and well be reading about it in the newspaper.
Laughing, Gabrielle completely understood Brians concerns. Brian. Come on, shes not that bad. Knowing better.
I heard what she did to Mom and Dads yard, again. Shaking his head. No way, you come here and shes bound to follow. Nothing doing. Either way, Im screwed.
Brian. Drawing out his name in admonition.
No. Nope. No way. Wrong answer. Making his answer as clear as possible.
Please? Pleading, Gabrielle smiled when she heard him sigh. Pretty, please?
Okay, but you make her stay there. I dont want my kids falling under her rotten influence. Frowning at his lack of stubbornness.
Thats a promise. No fingers crossed. Holding out her hand, fingers spread wide.
When are you coming? Resigned to his fate, Brian moved into loving brother mode, which he saved just for Faith and not his own snotty sister.
Im not sure. I havent even decided to take the job yet. Bringing her hand to her lap, Gabrielle looked at the silver band on her ring finger. I just wanted to give you a heads up.
Thanks for the warning. I wonder if we can move before you get here. Waving to his wife, when she came in the room. Jess pack up the kids, were moving. Faith is coming and you know what that means.
Gabrielle laughed when she heard Jess laughing in the background. Look, Brian, Id better let you go. Ive got a lot of stuff to do and Im gonna need all the sleep I can get.
Okay. Call when youre ready. Well set up the spare bedroom for you. Smiling as his wife winked. Take care, Faith and tell my piss ant sister that I love her, despite the fact that I still believe she was brought by the police.
Ill do that, Brian. Love you and send my love to Jess and the kids. Chuckling.
Love you, too. Bye. Hanging up the phone, Brian rolled his eyes as Jess fell on the floor laughing. Stop that. Pointing a finger at his wife. We are nothing alike.
Holding the phone for a few moments, Gabrielle put it down slowly and sighed. Standing, she walked slowly to the stairs and stopped when she saw the warrior siting in the dark stairwell. Xena. Whispering in the silence.
I guess Id better start looking for cardboard boxes. Scooting over, Xena made room on the step for Gabrielle.
I guess so. Leaning into the warrior, Gabrielle closed her eyes. I guess so.
Yes, sir. Gabrielle, sitting at her desk, scribbled as she listened.
Xena peeked her head around the corner of the library door and bit her lip. Damn, she thought. Shes never going to get off the phone. Sighing, she turned and looked at the present sitting on a near by table. Making a face, Xena wrinkled her nose. Something she did only in sheer consternation. Get off the phone, she mouthed silently and peeked around the corner again. Smiling, she picked up the box, walking proudly into the library.
Gabrielle looked up. Staring, first at the huge, brightly colored box and then at the look on Xenas face. Is it ticking? Smirking.
I can take it back, you know. Placing the present on the desk. Now, open it. Putting her hands on her hips, in mock irritation, Xena smiled from ear to ear.
What is it? Leaning back in the chair, Gabrielle smiled wickedly, knowing waiting wasnt one of Xenas many skills.
Its a house warming present. Tapping her foot. Open it.
Im not moving into a house. Trying to keep a straight face as the warriors patience waned.
I know that. Placing her hands on the desk, Xena leaned over and glared. Open it anyway!
Shrugging, Gabrielle tugged on the swirly ribbon, pulling it slowly.
Did you wrap this yourself? Pausing, she fingered the ribbon thoughtfully.
Now! Open it now! Losing what little patience she had left, Xena chomped at the bit.
All right. Calm down. Smiling to herself, Gabrielle did as she was instructed and laughed when Xena helped. Turning her head sideways, the bard read the boxes, then gave the warrior a confused look.
I got us matching answering machines. Smiling proudly. And cell phones. Pointing to the two smaller boxes, gift wrapped inside the larger one.
An electronic leash. How quaint. Opening one of the smaller boxes.
Xenas face fell. You dont like it?
Well, I guess its better than the pots and pans you got me for here. Examining the unwrapped box, noncommittally.
Ill take them back. Sighing heavily, Xena picked up the boxes and turned to leave.
Xena. Waiting for the warrior to turn around, Gabrielle bit her lip.
Not meeting the bards eyes, Xena turned back.
I love them. Letting the smile shed been fighting spread across her face.
Really? Looking up, Xena saw the smile. I hate it when you do that. Setting the boxes back down.
I know. Rising, Gabrielle came around the desk. Thats why I do it. Wrapping her arms around Xenas neck, pulling the warrior down for a kiss. Thank you.
Youre welcome. Stealing another kiss, before reaching for one of the small boxes and starting to relate all the special functions. I had our number here and my cell number put into the memory of yours and vice versa for mine. Prying open the box. And I got you two extra batteries.
And whos going to pay the national debt, aka our phone bill? Leaning back against the desk, Gabrielle picked up the other small box and opened it.
You. Tossing styrofoam on the floor.
Me? Looking up from her new toy, Gabrielles eyes grew abnormally wide.
Yea. That way Ill know you wont be spending all your money partying with those college hunks. Winking, Xena pushed a button and the bards phone rang.
Rolling her eyes, Gabrielle pushed a button, bringing the phone to her ear. Tell me, Xena. Looking at the warrior, three feet away, holding her phone and listening. Exactly how did I end up with the green eyes in this family?
Laughing, Xena pushed a button and the line went dead. Let me try it from outside. Jogging out of the room.
In a few moments, her phone rang again and Gabrielle listened to giggling. Shaking her head, walking back to the chair, she sat down. I can see what Im going to be doing all day. Smiling as the line went dead again.
And so the day continued, with Xena trying the phones from further and further away, leaving Gabrielle some time to get work done in the intermissions. The sun was setting, when Xena finally felt satisfied and stopped playing and Gabrielle put the phone out of arms reach. Looking at her desk, the bard went through the paperwork shed accumulated during the transition from teacher to professor. Sighing, she closed her eyes and thought about what the last month had been like.
The decision to take the job had been the easy part. The rest was a nightmare. Xenas father was not happy to lose his favorite teacher and Maggie had cried, despite Gabrielles reassurance that shed keep tabs on Xena and would come by every chance she got. Brian, on the other hand, was not happy to see his sister arrive with the bard and was even further disgruntled when the two weeks had turned into three. It was Gabrielles fault for taking the warrior with her to look at apartments, which shed done to keep Xena out of her brothers hair and because she knew the warrior wanted assurance that it met with her standards. Thus, theyd looked at every available apartment within a twenty mile radius of the campus and, shed only been able to find one that met with Xenas apparent lofty standards. Many had met with Gabrielles, but the warrior had found something wrong with each and, to the bards chagrin, had no qualms of voicing her opinions. One poor realtor had even been reduced to tears at the warriors inspection and Gabrielle had had to drive the woman back to the office herself. Fortunately and after a very heated argument, she and Xena agreed on the next one they looked at, which Gabrielle had to admit was the best of the best. Next had come furnishings, which for some unknown reason, had gone quickly and without any arguments. Shed left Xena at home.
Now Gabrielle was in the process of packing up what personal belongings she wanted to take and found that just as tedious as apartment hunting. There were boxes everywhere and shed already made two trips, starting with her most treasured keepsakes and working her way down to stuff that was less sentimental and more functional.
Staring at the desk again, she sighed heavily. The one thing wanted to take most, other than Xena was, in fact, her desk. It was over three hundred years old and shed had it for almost as long and loved it. Xena equated it to her Harleys and Gabrielle had to agree. The dark mahogany wood seemed to call to her and shed written some of her best work on the antique, but unfortunately the apartment, though huge, was no match for the wooden behemoth. The only room large enough to hold it, and allowed you to actually get in the door, was the living room. However, Xena had pointed out that unless they knocked a hole in the wall, the desk wasnt going to make it. So, with much sadness, Gabrielle had agreed to leave it behind, with the promise from the warrior to wax it once a week in her absence. Stroking the wood lovingly, Gabrielle sighed. I hate to do it, guy, but Ive gotta leave you here. Looking up, as the phone rang, Gabrielle picked up her leash, pushed the button and frowned when the phone rang again. Realizing it wasnt the cell phone, she jumped up, running into the living room. Picking that one up, she laughed when Xena purred on the other end.
What are you wearing? Trying and failing to disguise her voice, Xena smiled.
The same thing I had on when you left, stupid. Sitting on the couch, Gabrielle rolled her eyes as heaving breathing met her ear. You know they have medications to cure that asthma problem.
Ive been watching you. Lowering her voice.
Good. Can you see this. Extending her arm, Gabrielle held up a fist with an extended middle finger.
Thats not nice. Chuckling, Xena came through the patio doors.
It wasnt meant to be. Hanging up the phone, she rolled her eyes. Are you done playing yet?
I havent tried the answering machines yet. Plopping down beside the bard, Xena handed Gabrielle the cell phone. This ones yours.
Were gonna have to get labels for them. Unable to tell the difference from the one shed used all day.
I shouldve gotten different colors. Nodding in agreement, Xena took her toy back. Ill do that tomorrow.
We cant. Taking the phone back, looking around at the open cardboard boxes. Weve got to take this stuff to the apartment tomorrow.
Youre telling me youre finished? Raising an eyebrow in doubt and looking at the boxes as well. Did you leave me anything?
Yes, my plants. Pointing to the wall covered with flora, Gabrielle watched Xena grimace. You promised.
I know. I know. Sighing at the jungle. Water them twice a week and feed them once a month. Repeating her instructions, verbatim.
And dont forget the fish. Pointing to the aquarium amongst the plants.
I take care of them anyway. Slapping at Gabrielles hand.
Just checking. Laughing, Gabrielle kissed the warriors cheek. Thank you, by the way.
You already thanked me for the phone. Puzzled.
I mean for being so supportive. Taking the warriors hand, bringing it to her lips for a light kiss. I know this isnt what you wanted.
Anything that makes you happy, makes me happy. Flipping her hand and kissing Gabrielles fingers in return.
Im gonna miss you so much. Feeling tears welling up, Gabrielle smiled.
Naw. Ma Bell will love us. Leaning over, Xena placed her lips against the bards. I love you.
I love you, too. Falling into the kiss, Gabrielle felt herself being lifted off the couch and wrapped her arms around Xenas neck. This move has got to be the dumbest thing Ive ever come up with, she thought as the warrior lowered her to the bed, then forgot about the move and everything outside Xenas embrace for a very long time.
Two days later, they took the boxes to the apartment.
Thats it. Xena looked around at the living room of Gabrielles apartment approvingly.
I think so. Looking as well, but without much glee, knowing that the boxes werent going to unpack themselves.
Do you want help unpacking? Toeing a box, Xena studied the floor.
No. Gabrielle said softly, studying the warrior. Itll keep me busy until the new semester starts.
Okay. Still not meeting the bards eyes, Xena felt tears running down her face. I guess Ill go then.
Xena. Whispering, Gabrielle moved to where the warrior was standing and wrapped her arms around Xenas waist. Looking up into blue eyes, she felt her own tears falling.
I know. Sniffing. Youll be back soon.
Very soon. Laying her head on Xenas chest, Gabrielle heard the warriors pounding heart and felt strong arms wrap around her. Closing her eyes, she sent another wave of tears downward and squeezed, bringing Xena as close as possible. I love you. Her lips trembling, she looked up and saw her soul reflected in a sea of blue.
Xena held the bard tightly, staring at her own soul. I love you. Refusing to let her bottom lip pop out, she smiled gently. Though our bodies may part, our souls remain together. Our hearts beat as one and our minds remember. For an eternity of love shall we live and for a lifetime of joy shall I give. You are the reason for the breath I take and the price we pay. This journey is but a twinkling in the night filled with passion and delight. Though our bodies may pass, we shall remain. Joined forever in the circle of our love, the warmth of our hearts, the strength of our spirits and the union of our souls. This I promise, this day and for eternity.
Closing her eyes, Gabrielle listened to the poem Xena had written for her over a thousand years ago and that theyd used as wedding vows in every lifetime since. As the last words were spoken, she felt the warriors palm on her cheek and then the sweetest of lips against hers. Lifetimes passed before her eyes, as every memory brought the poem home to her soul. As the eternity ended, Gabrielle opened her eyes and saw the love of countless lifetimes smiling down on her and basked in the warmth of that love.
Slowly, Xena loosened her hold and stepped back. Giving the bard a wink, she opened the door, pausing for a moment, then stepped out, closing the door behind her.
Gabrielle walked to the door, placing her hand on the cool wood and listened. When the familiar rumble of the Harley started, she turned, leaning against the door and slowly slid downward, sobbing.
The first few days had been tough. The hardest being getting used to sleeping alone, which Gabrielle had given up on trying to get used to. Her favorite pillow was missing and there wasnt anything she could do about it, so she tried not to think about it. Her pillow called several times in the next couple of days and shed made a few lengthy calls herself, but once shed unpacked and started getting into the routine of daily life, Gabrielle found less time to make those calls and after a week of not calling, she came home one day and pushed the play button on her answering machine.
Message one. Hi, its me. Im just calling to let you know that I dont miss you and that the dark spots on the floor are not grape juice, but burned spots from lightning strikes. Apparently someone has taken up Zeus job and attacked me every time I told one of your plants that youd be back soon. Did I mention that I dont miss you. Damn! There went another one. Going to get a industrial sander now, love you. Bye.
Message two. Me again. Finished refinishing the floor. Ignore the footprints when you come home and the shoe stuck in the finish. Funny how wet polyurethane looks just like dry polyurethane. Anyway, love you. Bye.
Message three. Ive watered your books and dusted the plants. Oh, wait. Thats not right. Well you know what I mean. I watered the fish too, but I dont think they liked the plant food. Must be an allergic reaction. Love you, Bye.
Message four. Bad news. Dad found out about the answering machine. I think he thinks its his personal hot line. I havent called him back yet, but you know me. Ill wait till Mom calls. Makes him mad. (chuckling) Love you, Bye.
Message five. Oh, wait. Sorry, my beeper is going off. Love you, Bye.
Message six. False alarm. Dad finally found my beeper number. Hes worse than a blood hound. I guess I better call him. Love you, Bye.
Message seven. Were your ears burning? They shouldve been. Dad isnt happy that you havent come back yet. Apparently he thinks youre on vacation. Denial is apparently genetic. Love you, Bye.
Message eight. Love you.
Message nine. FYI. Dont put liquid dish washing liquid in the dishwasher. It makes lots of bubbles. Thank god for tile. Wheres the mop? Calling the plumber now. Love you, Bye.
Message ten. Did I mention that I love you? No? Well I do. Very much and Im very proud of you too. The doctor and the professor. All we need now is the skipper and weve got Gilligans Island. Love you, Bye.
There were three other messages, but they werent from Xena so Gabrielle deleted them. Feeling quite guilty, she found her cell phone and started to push the button when it rang. Pushing the other button, she put it to her ear. Hello?
Im coming to get the answering machine. It apparently doesnt work. Sounding very upset, Xena frowned.
Hi. Slipping into a comfortable position on the couch, Gabrielle smiled. If Xenas voice wasnt a dead give away, the Greek she was speaking certainly was. I miss you.
Sorry, I must have the wrong number. Still frowning, Xena picked dead leaves off some of the plants.
Xena, Im sorry. Ive been really, really busy. Knowing the warrior was feeling neglected, Gabrielle smiled, imagining the pout on Xenas face. I love you.
Im pouting. Putting her words to action.
I know you are. What can I do to make the pout go away? Hoping her line wasnt tapped by some one underage.
Tell me you love me again. Sighing, Xena sat down on the couch.
I love you. Lowering her voice an octave, Gabrielle smiled when Xena chuckled. Feel better?
Much. How have you been? Picking at the fabric.
Fine and busy. Ive started on my subject plan and have had meetings all week. Everybody seems to think that Im some great Greek guru, whos coming to salvage the history department. Picking at the fabric.
You are. Do you want me to beat them up? Smiling at the thought, Xena made a few feints with her imaginary sword.
I think I can handle them. Seeing those feints in her mind, Gabrielle snickered. Put down that sword.
What sword. Suddenly taking much interest in her finger nails.
Xena. Youve been practicing, havent you? Shed felt something in her sleep one night and awakened with the strange feeling of a old battle cry ringing in her ears.
Xena. The silence said it all and Gabrielle sighed.
Yes. Wondering where the hidden camera was.
How many nicks do you have? Seeing the warrior covered in Batman bandages.
Two. Glancing down at her leg, Xena scratched above a Batman bandage.
Are they serious? Thanking the gods that it was only two, which was about twelve less than the last time shed pulled out her sword.
Batmans got it covered. Scratching the other bandage on her left shoulder.
No stitches? Batman could cover deep wounds, Gabrielle remembered, when shed gotten a glass shard in her hand that took seventeen stitches in three layers. Xena had stitched her up and Batman covered the mess.
Nope. Just scratches. I think Im getting my feel back. Feinting again and adding a lunge.
Are you that bored? Sighing. Gabrielle was feeling guilty again.
Nope. Just felt like some sword drills. Weird, isnt it? Thinking that is was.
For anybody but you, yes. Looking at her watch and grimacing. Anything else?
Nope. Just thought Id call to see if you were still alive. Lying through her pearly whites.
When are you coming up? Feeling she could use a reunion herself, Gabrielle hoped it would be soon.
Maybe in a couple of weeks. Picking at her toe nails. Xena tried to put one in her mouth.
Okay. Keeping her true feelings out of her voice, Gabrielle sounded okay.
Well, Ive got to go. Im supposed to be having dinner with Mom and Dad tonight. Rolling her eyes at the thought, Xena put her finger in her mouth, replacing her toe.
Do not, under any circumstances, ride you motorcycle anywhere near the grass. Pointing at the phone, with a stern look.
Spoil sport. Sticking out her tongue at the phone.
I mean it, Xena. Taking the dont even think about it tone, Gabrielle shook her head. Promise me.
Promise. No motorcycle on grass. Smiling. How about in the shrubs?
Xena! Looking for something to hit, she threw a pillow instead.
Just kidding. Ill be good. Uncrossing her fingers, Xena chuckled. I promise.
All right. Trying to pick up on a possible fib.
Ive got to go. Standing, Xena started up the stairs. I love you.
I love you too. Bye. Sighing, Gabrielle closed her eyes.
Gabrielle put the phone down. A couple of weeks, she thought. Gods this is going to be murder.
Two days later, Xena showed up at her door, with the lame excuse of needing to pick up some parts for her motorcycle and after a brief stay, disappeared for several hours. Arriving back, she had a sprocket of some sort and dirty finger nails, which made Gabrielle feel about an inch high. The rest of the day was spent talking and going over possible prospective remodeling plans for their house. Apparently the wallpaper in their bedroom need replacing, so they went to an interior decorating store and spent several agitated hours arguing over prints. When Xena left, not long after, Gabrielle felt as if shed been hit by a bus. The warrior hadnt made any plays for her and had only made marginal affections toward her. Their usual playfulness was gone and Gabrielle sensed that Xena was holding back for a reason, but she couldnt figure out why. Instead of spending the day in bed, like shed hoped, theyd spent it like an old married couple. A thought that made the bard shiver. She never doubted Xenas faithfulness and was sure that anything that was going on would work itself out, but that didnt help the uneasy feeling she was getting and as soon as she got the chance to go home, Gabrielle promised herself to find out what was going on.
Unfortunately, duty called, like always and the trip home didnt materialize. They still called each other frequently, but the spark was starting to wane in that area too. There were no more cute messages, just the usual checking up ones and every day that went by started to seem like an eternity. Fortunately, Gabrielle had her work to occupy her mind most of the time and as the beginning of the semester drew near, she switched from uneasiness about Xena to nervousness about her classes. It had been a long time since shed taught at that level and the idea of standing in front of a hundred strange faces was making her edgy. Needing someone to use as a sounding board for her ideas, she called Xena, but was surprised to get the machine. Six times, after which she tried the cell phone, three times and finally resorted to the warriors pager. Finally the warrior called her late, the night before she had to start teaching the next day.
Where have you been? Worried, she paced around the apartment.
Working. Flipping through a book, Xena studied a couple of the pictures.
On what? Her frustration growing, so did the volume.
Dont yell at me. Picking up another book, Xenas brow knitted. Gods. What an awful picture.
Im sorry. Ive just been worried about you. Truthfully, shed been worried sick, literally.
Im a big girl, Gabrielle. I can take care of myself. Setting the books aside, Xena closed her eyes.
Thats my job. She was being left out of Xenas life and it was killing her, even though she knew it was no ones fault but her own.
I have parents. Covering her eyes, Xena smiled.
Xena. Dont do this to me, please. Desperate, Gabrielle felt the quivering in her voice. Dont shut me out.
Funny, that. Sighing for effect, Xenas smile grew.
Xena. Suddenly the line went dead and Gabrielle threw the phone across the room. Damn you, Xena. Despite the fact that she was turning red with fury, tears started rolling down Gabrielles cheeks and she wiped them away. I will not cry. Evidently her eyes didnt hear her, because the tears started flowing like rain. It continued raining until Gabrielle fell asleep on the couch. What little sleep she did get was fitful. Tossing and turning, she awoke at dawn, eyes red and puffy and her heart in the pit of her stomach. Reaching for the phone, she remembered what shed done with it and found it in pieces on the floor. Turning she went to the land line and called home, getting the machine. Closing her eyes, she hung up before the message was finished playing. Sighing heavily, Gabrielle looked at the clock and sighed again. D-Day. Trying to put the nights events out of her mind and failing, she got ready for her first day in the saddle.
On campus, everything seemed normal. Students wander around, chatting and laughing, while others looked lost. Going to her office, Gabrielle went over her plan, focusing on it with a vengeance and fighting the visions of Xena in her head. Finally the appointed hour rolled around and she walked like a prisoner on death row, down the long hallway to her class. Coming in the side door, she stared up at the tiers of empty seats.
Faith. Joni said, coming in the room.
Yes? Not looking at her new TA, Gabrielle continued to stare into space.
Are you all right? Moving to the bards side, Joni gave her a concerned look.
Faith? Waving her hand in front of Gabrielles face. Hello?
Im sorry. The wave did the trick and Gabrielle turned to face the young woman. What did you need?
Im just dropping of the roster for todays class. Handing the bard a folded sheet of computer paper. The kind with green bars that nobody used anymore.
Thanks, Jodi. Giving the girl a half hearted smile.
Sure thing. Smiling like the girl she was, Joni beamed. Ill be back before class starts.
Okay. Watching the girl bounce out of the room., Gabrielle was again reminded of the warrior and shook her head. Moving to the small podium, she dropped the roster down, leaned against the wooden stand and imagined the faces that would fill the empty seats in a very short time.
As the first students started to file in, Gabrielle started arranging the papers shed need for the day and didnt look up until she glanced at her watch and noticed she was making them wait. Looking up, she blinked at the classroom full of staring faces. Smiling, to cover her embarrassment, she took a deep breath. Okay, first things first. My name is Faith Riley. This class is Greco-Roman history 501 and if your text books dont have half naked men on them, chucking spears at each other, youre in the wrong class. Letting the chuckles ease her tension and switch her mind set into bard mode. Rubbing her hands together, she smiled warmly. All takers and no leavers, good. Then well move on to the second item on the agenda, which is making sure everybody is here. Flipping through the papers, Gabrielle pulled out the roster and opened it up. When I call your name, please give a sign that youre breathing. Another chuckle rippled through the class and Gabrielle squared her shoulders. As she called out the names, shed look around the room until she spotted the face that went with the name and smile. . . . Jeff Lawson.
Here. Giving a short wave.
Look and smile. Patrica Lewis.
Here. Nodding her head.
Look and smile. Michael Mercer.
Yo! Bobbing his head.
Look and smirk. Robert Montgomery.
Here. Another short wave.
Look and smile. Grace Mor . . .gan. Looking up, Gabrielle spotted a hand waving like it was attached to an idiot and then found an idiotic smile on the face beside it. Xena. Whispering as the breath left her body.
Xena winked and changed her smile to a warm and gentle one. Ready to turn and burn, Maam. Shifting to a wicked grin and another wink, before half the class turned to give her a curious stare.
You couldnt have pried the smile off Gabrielles face with the jaws of life as she beamed into loving eyes. Staring a moment longer, the bard felt questioning eyes on her and proceeded with the rest of the names.
The rest of the day went as smooth as silk, except for the fact that Gabrielle had to mentally keep herself from being drawn into piercing blue eyes and fighting down the feeling that she was being visually undressed in front of the class.
Pretending to fuss over something, Xena waited until the last student left, and felt a pair of eyes on her. Looking up she smiled innocently. Hi. You look like shit.
Do you know how mad I should be at you right now? Folding her arms across her chest, Gabrielle leaned up against the chair in front of the warrior.
Yes. Smiling bigger, Xena leaned back in her chair.
Then tell me why I shouldnt kick the shit out of you right here, right now? Raising her eyebrows, Gabrielle gave the warrior a meaningful stare.
Because you love me and know that I love you and that the thought of me missing you has driven me crazy and therefore I cant be held responsible for my actions and Ive really really missed you since youve been gone. And that if I stay in that house by myself one more night, Im going to kill somebody and Im really sorry for making you mad and that I only wanted to surprise you and . . . Her words were cut off by two lips pressed hard against hers. Rising to her feet, Xena wrapped her arms around the bard, pulling her into a passionate kiss and a bear hug.
You broke the phone? Glancing across the room, at the pieces still on the floor, Xena shook her head. For that, Missy, running a finger between the bards breasts, you get a pink one, next time.
Gag. Smiling, Gabrielle stuck her finger in her mouth and choked.
Leaning down, Xena kissed the finger, then the lips.
Closing her eyes, the bard wrapped her hands around the warriors neck. Xena?
Hmmm. Moving her lips up the bards neck, she ran her tongue back down.
How are you going to take my class and work, too? Cocking her neck as the warrior started up again.
Ive taken an extended leave of absence. Whispering in the bards ear. Jim is going to take my active cases and hell call me if he really, really, really needs me. Nibbling on a tasty earlobe.
I take it youre expecting to live here. Chuckling when Xena pinched her butt. Okay, I can live with that.
Good thing. Making a slow path toward Gabrielles breast, Xena started it off with her fingers.
Wheres your clothes? Arching her back when soft lips met hardened nipple.
In the car. Mumbling with the nipple between her teeth.
Car? Pushing the warrior away, Gabrielle stared at her in disbelief. You hate cars. What car?
Brians car. Smiling wickedly as the bards eyes grew into saucers.
That dirty, rotten, little, son of a bachea. Sitting up, Gabrielle glared into space. He knew you were coming and didnt tell me.
I made him promise not to, or else Id tell his kids how he made money when he was five. Smiling with the memory of catching her brother selling peeks of his private parts for a nickel, to the neighborhood girls.
I could strangle him. Bringing her hands together in a imaginary strangle hold, Gabrielle growled.
Take pity on him, Gabrielle. Hes willing to live in the same city with me, just to make you happy. Grabbing the bards hands, Xena pushed her back down to the floor.
Was I that obvious? Rolling her eyes at what shed been like the past couple of months.
He said that if Id waited another five minutes to call him, he wouldve called me. Spreading Gabrielles arms, Xena took up where shed been so rudely interrupted.
Gods. Sighing, she arched with the warriors touch.
So, Gabrielle, moving to the other breast, how hard is this class going to be?
Youll have to study a lot.. Moaning softly, Gabrielle looked down into twinkling blue eyes.
What do I have to do to get an A? Moving further south on the bards body, Xena kissed her way to blonde curls.
Closing her eyes, Gabrielle bit her lip. Thats a start. Feeling Xenas tongue between her folds.
Dipping her tongue lower, Xena smiled as the bard groaned and started rocking her hips. What about an A+? Flicking her tongue outside Gabrielles opening.
You can have what ever you want, if youd just shut up. Throwing her head back, Gabrielle lifted her hips off the floor, when the warrior began thrusting her tongue inside her center. Gods! You want extra credit?
Epilogue. Brians secret was kept, although his sanity was lost shortly after his sisters arrival. Dad ended up replacing all the fish that died, under his care and finally gave in to his manly pride, allowing Mom to take charge when the plants started looking like the fish. His only condolence at not having the girls close at hand, was his thriving lawn. Xena spent her days and nights, between ravaging a certain blonde professor and studying and beating off every jock that came within twenty feet of that certain blonde and made a special trip home to retrieve her sword. Gabrielle fell into the groove, now that she wasnt sexually frustrated and began teaching the written history of her people and erasing the lies that filled the text books. Together, the warrior and bard set the record straight and somehow even managed not to get caught making out in Gabrielles office, though they did have a few close calls, especially when Jim came for a visit and brought his police crime scene tape and didnt mention that it was Brians idea. Joni, who quickly developed a crush on the warrior, was replaced after two weeks.
Thanks for reading.
Return to The Bard's Corner