DISCLAIMER: These characters don't belong to me, they belong to those nice PTB at MCA/Universal. I am borrowing for my own sick and twisted amusement. The story, however, does belong to me. It's copyrighted to the author on 2/5/99. This story does contain the idea and concept of two women in-love.

Tavern Talk
Tales of the Warrior Princess: The Private Scrolls of Gabrielle The Bard Who Loved Her
By GabTBard

Drunkenness was something we dealt with almost daily on the road. Usually it was some drunken man coming on to one of us. Mysteriously, when this happened, the man in question usually woke up with not only a headache, but an egg size lump on his forehead. For awhile, before Xena and I were lovers, there was a rash of these cases, men in villages all over waking up with formations on their heads that could have only resulted in being bashed over the head. Strangely enough, none of the men who experienced this could never remember what happened. They all mentioned a red-head, but that was all they could remember.

Back to drunkenness. As I mentioned, this was something that we encountered regularly. I admit that there were a few occasions on which I consumed too much ale myself. But, rather than waking up with an egg size lump on my head, I usually woke up in a nice warm bed with a tall familiar warrior wrapped around me. Between me and this scroll, I would sometimes pretend to be drunk just so that I could wake up that way.

My companion, however, was rarely even tipsy. She was so controlled when it came to drink. Not only that, but she could drink more than anyone I've ever known, and still throw her chakram straight. I don't know, maybe the alcohol did affect her sometimes, but she never showed it. However, there was one time where she lost her control, a time that neither I, nor the small town of Thraize, will ever forget. They still talk about the night the Warrior Princess got roaring drunk.

I bet Xena that I could catch more fish than she could. She was nice and gave me half a candlemark head start. Catching fish with your hands isn't as easy as it looks. It takes a lot of patience and good listening skills. So, for half a candlemark I proceeded to get a half a dozen fish from the lake we'd camped at the night before. After my grace period, Xena got into the water and started to catch her own fish. Needless to say, my concentration was a wreck when she got in naked. She caught me staring and gave me a grin followed by a purr in return.

I was fuming because I knew that she was doing that to distract me. We'd only been lovers for a short time and there'd be times that we couldn't keep from touching each other -- constantly. It's a good thing that she still has that warrior hearing otherwise we would have been caught with out pants down -- literally -- a few times. So, what does she do? She tries to out fish me without clothes. There was no doubt in my mind that she did that on purpose. I'd have called her on it except for that I knew she would look at me with that innocent face and say that she just didn't want to get her shift wet.

I was determined to show her that I could match her at that game. Walking towards the shore, I stopped when I was only thigh high in water. Slowly, I reached down and pulled off the shift I'd put on for the task. Then, turning so that my back was to Xena, I bent over and waited for the first fish that came my way. I didn't turn around, but I could feel her eyes on my naked backside. Grinning to myself, I jumped a few feet in the air when I felt a cold hand fondling said backside.

The fish were forgotten as Xena lifted me out of the water and quickly raced back to our bedrolls. Normally, she would have gladly lain me down on the ground, but I got after her about that after I found dirt in places that it shouldn't have bben.

Candlemarks went by as we feverishly made love. It was one of those rare days where we didn't have to be anywhere and we didn't run into anyone needing rescued, which was a good thing considering the activity that took up most of our day.

Finally, as the sun began its decent, Xena and I lay in each other's arms. I'd been dozing in that comfortable spot when I suddenly remembered what had started all of it. The fish!

"How many fish did you catch?"

"Huh?" She'd been dozing too. The question came out of the blue and I know her mind wasn't thinking about fish at that moment.

"How many fish did you catch?" I repeated slowly.

Xena's brows wrinkled as she thought about it. "I don't know, but I know it was more than you." She laid back down, thinking that the conversation was over. There was no doubt in her mind that she caught more fish than me, and if there's one way to irk a bard it's to assume.

I started to get up, looking for whatever clothes I could find.

"Where ya going?" Xena mumbled, her tone obviously upset that I had ruined the comfort we'd found.

"Going to go count fish." I found an old shift of Xena's. Pulling it over my head, I started toward the lake. I'd gotten half way there when I felt an arm snake around my waist. The arm pulled me back till I was snug up against a warm firm body.

"You could have waited for me," Xena's voice purred into my ear. I shivered when I felt the warmth of her mouth near me ear.

"I didn't know you wanted to come."

Letting go of my waist, she moved till she was standing beside me and together we made our way to the lake.

"I don't see what the big deal is," she muttered, half to herself, half to me.

"A bet's a bet, I just want to see who won."

At the shore there were two piles of fish, both very close in size. I examined both piles, finding the fish that had only one eye. That pile was mine. Slowly I counted the fish, putting each one aside as I did. Xena did the same to the other pile.

"How many Xena?"

"Fourteen," she said proudly, sure that she'd won.

"Ah ha! I have fifteen!" I started to do a little dance around my fish.

"Wait! How do you know that's your pile?"

I told her about the one eyed fish.

"That doesn't mean anything! Just a second..." She pulled a fish out of her pile, turned around so that her back was to me as she examined it. "See!" She turned back around and shoved the fish into my face. "This one only has one eye!"

"Let me see that!"


"Yes!" I grabbed for the fish, but Xena was fast to hold it over her head. But as she did, something fell out of her other hand. I bent over to pick it up. "Xena, what's...EEEWWWW!!!!" I quickly dropped the object, wiping my hands on the grass. "You took its eyeball out?" I couldn't believe she had stooped to that.

"It just sort of...fell out." She didn't sound as convincing now. She still held the fish above her head.

"I win!" I was firm this time. She wasn't going to cheat me out of the bet!

"Fine, you win, I get drunk." She slapped the fish into the ground. It skipped back up and hit her in the face. Hands clenched at her side, I could see the anger building inside of her. "I just hope you can live with yourself knowing that it's your fault I lost." Her words were said with careful control.

Pretending to think about it, I took a second before answering. "Yup, I think I can!"

That night we went to the nearest town, which happened to be Thraize, a small fishing village. They only had one tavern and as we entered, I could see it was definitely the central place for socializing.

We found a table near the back and sat down. When the bar maid came, Xena ordered her first mug of ale as well as a tumbler of dark burgundy colored liquid. The only thing she said to the maid was to keep them coming.

Well, 24 mugs of ale and 5 tumblers later, Xena was definitely feeling good. Her hand kept finding my thigh under the table. She acted as though there wasn't any change, but I could see the subtle way she misjudged her actions a few times. Once, she went to put her mug back on the table and missed. The mug clattered to the floor and Xena stood up, examining the table. "Gab, why'd you move the table?"

I was waiting for something to happen. It was inevitable. Anytime we went into a tavern, no matter the size, something happened. Xena said it was because trouble was attracted to me, but I secretly believe that trouble was more enamoured with her than with me.

It didn't take too long before my theory proved correct. A man who obviously had too much to drink himself, came up and asked me to dance. The tavern had a small dance floor, and a small group of villagers with instruments were setting up in the corner. I was about to decline his offer. It wasn't anything personal, for he was young and good looking, I just didn't want to leave Xena sitting alone. It scared me to think of her wandering off, drunk.

"She's not dancing with you," the tone was firm, but the words were slurred a bit.

"Why not?" The man questioned, moving closer to Xena and putting his arm around her in a friendly way.

"Cause I said so."

"She with you?"

"Yup, and you can't dance with her."

The man sat down at the table, looking dumbfounded. I honestly think he just wanted someone to dance with cause he looked at Xena and asked, "Do you want to dance then?"

Xena looked at him with wide eyes. "Sure."

The two of them got up and started toward the dance floor. I was laughing to myself as I watched them gallop around to the music, their steps off beat. Xena was usually a very graceful dancer, but it was obvious the alcohol had impaired her.

Finally, she started to make her way back to me. As she did though, a large man put his hand on her upper arm. I couldn't hear what was said, but I saw the anger cross Xena's face in a lightening flash.

As I tried to make my way across the crowded room to where Xena was, I saw her back away from the man, and grab her chakram. It took her a few tries before she got it loose from her belt. She swung her arm around like she always does, and went to take the man's head from his shoulders. Only, that's not what happened.

She didn't let go of the chakram and proceeded to instead lose her balance as it came around her body, causing her to fall hard onto the floor.

If it hadn't been for the fact that I was worried about her, I would have fallen down myself with laughter. The rest of the tavern was laughing, some people just chuckling, others all out guffawing.

I got closer and finally reached Xena. She looked stunned, but as she heard the laughter she quickly got up. "What are you people laughing at!??" She yelled at everyone. This only made them laugh harder.

"Xena, come on, let's go." I tried to get a hold of her arm, but she pulled away.

"No, you can't laugh at me and get away with it!" Before I realized it, she grabbed my staff from my hands, and started to whirl it around over her head.

The patrons started to back off, not wanting to get hit in the head by the flying stick. Xena lowered the staff and tried some intricate maneuvers that would bring the staff around her body. I'd seen her do it a dozen times sober.

She started off fine, but then she tried to bring the staff around her legs and was thrown off balance. Instead of stopped the maneuver, she continued, but her body didn't react in time. The staff when flying against her forehead with a crack audible even outside of the tavern.

The room was instantly quiet, all eyes on Xena. She stood there, staff still firmly in hand, a dazed look on her face. I started to reach out to her, but before my hand reached her, she started to fall backwards.

A large man caught Xena before she hit the ground. From the limp way her body fell, I knew that she was unconscious. With the man's help, we got her upstairs to a room. I undressed her and put her to bed, climbing in beside her and holding her to me as I fell to sleep.

That next morning Xena was sporting a lump on her head the size of an egg. On our way out of the village, we overheard some of the town's people talking.

"Hey, what happened to her?" One townsman nodded toward Xena, obviously having missed the excitement the night before. "Did she see the red-head?"

The man next to him only started laughing. "No, we all saw what happened to her, let me tell you..."

I had to laugh with them. Xena growled at me. "We are never coming back here again, you hear me?" I could only nod, the tears falling from my eyes as I tried to catch my breath in between laughter.

"It's NOT funny!"


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