|Episode Guide||Teaser||Act 1||Act 2||Act 3||Act 4|
EXT. CLIFFSIDE SEASCAPE - NEXT DAY
These are the same cliffs and shoreline we saw at the end of Act Three. Standing atop the cliffs are Xena, Gabrielle, and Arthur. Behind them is the castle. Out at sea are several battleships moving slowly toward shore. Xena is dressed in heavier armor than usual, and Gabrielle is similarly attired. Xena has her usual sword and scabbard at her back, with Excalibur tucked into her belt.
They won't try to climb
up here, will they?
Not if they have two brain cells
to rub together. All we'd have
to do is stone them to death.
I figured as much.
She glances over to one side, where Arthur is standing a bit apart from them. He's holding his helmet under one arm, and the sea breeze is blowing his hair back off his face. His eyes are closed as if he's meditating.
Gabrielle looks up at Xena, and their eyes meet. She nods a little toward Arthur and Xena nods back at her. Gabrielle walks over to Arthur and stands at his side, looking out to sea.
If not for those ships, I'd say
this was a beautiful view.
Arthur slowly opens his eyes but doesn't look at her, his eyes still fastened on the horizon.
Were you thinking about
your father just now?
Yes. How did you know?
Just a hunch … I know
what it's like to lose your
parents to barbarians.
Arthur looks at her.
Oh. I’m sorry, Gabrielle.
I didn't know.
His face clouds in anger, and he looks back out at sea, his jaw firmly set.
My mother died when I was young, and
my sister was taken away to Avalon to
learn the ways of the Goddess. It was
just my father and me for a very long
time. There's a part of me that wishes
I were the one slated to go up against
their leader. I'd like so much to....
I wanted vengeance too. And came
very close to extracting it. Xena went
through Tartarus for me over that.
She glances back, knowing Xena can hear them. Xena appears not to be watching them, but we see from her eyes that she is listening.
Funny thing, when the opportunity finally
presented itself, I realized something.
And what was that?
That it wouldn't bring my parents back.
All it would have done is make me
like him... a cold-blooded murderer.
She turns slightly, placing a hand on his arm.
Arthur, whatever you do today, do
it for the future, not for the past.
Does that make sense?
It does, in theory. In practice, it may be
much more difficult. Thank you, Gabrielle,
to you and Xena. I think with Xena leading
us, we can drive the Saxons back. You see,
I have to believe that. If we lose, the future
my father was building toward is also lost.
We won't lose.
You're that certain?
Yes. If you'll excuse me....
She smiles and makes her way back to Xena's side. Xena places an arm lightly across her shoulders and Gabrielle looks up at her, placing her own hand over the one on her shoulder.
Is it time?
Yeah, almost. They'll come
ashore over there.
She points toward a beach that can be seen off to one side.
From there, they'll march around through
the woods and past Viviane's lake, then
up that open hillside below the castle on
the other side. We need to keep them
from getting very far up that hill.
She swallows hard and we see her throat working, as her face grows pensive.
After I take out their leader, I'm going to
use that pig bladder full of blood trick we
used on Iolaus way back, when we fooled
Ares and Zeus... make it look like he got me
right before I got him. Soon as you see blood,
if you aren't already nearby, you need to get to
my side pretty quick, before anyone else does.
Get there before you count to thirty, will ya?
She chuckles a little at her own levity.
I'll be close by. Xena, when it
comes time to play dead, don't
put the pinch on yourself.
Just hear me out.
You gonna put it on me?
Gabrielle turns, facing Xena and placing her hands on Xena's hips. Xena leans in closer, and places her hands on Gabrielle's shoulders. Gabrielle looks down for a moment, as if she's gathering her thoughts, then looks back up.
I've worked out a plan so you won't
need the pinch. Do you trust me?
With my life. So... do I need to do
anything differently than we discussed?
No. Pig bladder. Blood. Fall down.
Play dead. All good. Just no pinch.
Xena ducks her head and kisses her lightly on the lips, then pulls back. Gabrielle's eyes are closed.
No pinch. Got it.
Gabrielle's eyes flutter open and she licks her lips.
Arthur, it's time.
Arthur stares out at sea for a long moment, then turns and nods at her and puts his helmet on. His demeanor changes, and he stands tall and proud.
They walk around the castle out of sight.
EXT. HILLSIDE BATTLEFIELD - DAY
It is the same hillside battlefield from the Teaser. This time it is bright and sunny, and battalions of soldiers are lined up in formation, waiting. Xena, Gabrielle, Arthur, and Lancelot are at the front on horseback. Behind them are the mounted soldiers, and behind them the foot soldiers. At the bottom of the hill, just inside the tree line, we see Merlin.
Xena still has both swords. Gabrielle's sais are tucked in her boots, and she has a staff in one hand.
We hear the crunch of many marching feet, and the clopping of hooves. Then at the bottom of the hill, the Saxon army appears and begins marching uphill. At the front of the army is a large man on a huge horse. He pulls off to one side. Arthur leans toward Xena and points toward him.
That one, he'll be Prince Chretien, or
actually, he's King Chretien now.
My father killed his father in battle.
Xena leans toward Gabrielle.
I miss Argo.
I miss Greece.
Well then, let's do this
thing, and go home.
She turns her horse and raises Excalibur high in the air. Every soldier stands in silent readiness, straining to hear, and the horses move from hoof to hoof restlessly, chomping at their bits.
She turns and kicks her horse's sides, and suddenly the entire field is in motion, with both armies yelling and driving toward each other. They meet in the middle and the battle ensues, with loud clanking of weapons colliding, men yelling, and horses whinnying. Chretien has held back, observing and allowing his men to go ahead of him, as he sits on his horse near the bottom of the hill. We see Merlin watching him.
Xena charges down the hill, with Gabrielle behind her. Arthur follows, but is quickly engaged by a mounted Saxon soldier, and Lancelot also falls back to assist him. Xena and Gabrielle continue on without them.
(cont’d, yelling gleefully)
As they make their way toward Chretien, they
each take out several soldiers. Gabrielle uses the staff to easily knock
soldiers from the saddle, while Xena fights with Excalibur in one hand and
her own sword in the other, using her legs to guide her horse.
Xena knocks some men out, while she kills others as she clears a path toward her goal. At last they reach the bottom of the hill where Chretien and another soldier are waiting expectantly. However, when they are finally close enough for him to see their faces, his eyes widen.
What's this? Where's
She slides her own sword into its scabbard and lifts Excalibur, as her horse dances sideways in anticipation. Gabrielle turns her horse a bit, ready to cover Xena's back, as she warily watches Chretien's fighting partner.
I came to avenge my father's
death. Give me Arthur!
You want Arthur, you've gotta deal
with me first. Sheeee-yahhhh!
She charges forward and takes the offensive, as their swords clash over and over in a flash of sparks. The sun glints off their blades and armor, and their horses are sweating and foaming at their mouths.
Gabrielle waits, her staff ready, as Chretien's partner charges her. Just before he reaches her, Gabrielle looks past him and sees Merlin at the tree line. They make eye contact, and Merlin nods at her. She smiles slightly and nods back, then takes the first sword blow with her staff, easily shoving the solider back. He comes at her again and she continues to hold him off, sweeping the staff around from one side.
The battle is in full force, with men and horses scattered across the field in skirmish. Many have already fallen. Arthur and Lancelot have moved on, fighting foe by foe in turn.
Meanwhile, Xena and Chretien continue to face off in a fierce exchange of parries, in what appears to be a stalemate. They are both breathing hard, but Xena is smiling, enjoying the challenge, while Chretien is huffing and puffing, starting to show signs of strain.
Who are you, to take
Arthur's rightful place?
She swings at him with Excalibur.
Now there's a
She deflects a blow from overhead and counters with a wicked slice to his leg, drawing blood.
If I figure out the answer,
I'll let you know.
Chretien snarls and follows suit, slicing her across the same place on the same left upper arm that should be covered in scar tissue by now, but isn't. He laughs in satisfaction as she looks down at the blood running down her arm. His smile disappears as she charges him with renewed fury.
They circle in another round of sword clashes. Off to the side nearby, Gabrielle and Chretien's partner are still fighting, both of them growing weary. At last, Gabrielle gets the upper hand and with a mighty sweep of her staff, knocks him out of the saddle. As he falls, he grabs her leg, taking her with him, and they roll several times as they hit the ground, then come to a stop with Gabrielle on top. She leaps up and swings down hard with her staff, knocking his sword from his hands.
Sorry for this.
She swings again, and hits him hard enough to knock him unconscious, and his eyes roll back in his head, then close. Chretien sees this and glances at Xena, then suddenly turns his horse and charges toward Gabrielle, his sword tip aimed at her back.
Xena's eyes grow wide. She grits her teeth, then yells.
Son of a bacchae.
Gabrielle! Watch out!
Xena clicks to her horse and takes off after Chretien. Gabrielle hears Xena and spins around, and sees Chretien barreling toward her. She holds up her staff in readiness, but just as he reaches her, Xena catches up, their horses almost touching. She stabs him just under his ribs and then tackles him, and they both fly off their horses, landing on the ground. Xena feels his wrist for a pulse.
Dead. Let's finish
this, shall we?
The horses fly past Gabrielle, blocking her view for a moment. When they pass, she sees Xena hovered over Chretien. Xena turns toward her, then presses her hands against her stomach, crushing the hidden pig's bladder. Blood spurts out and she stands, staggering around dramatically before she drops Excalibur, stumbling and falling next to Chretien.
She runs to Xena's side and drops to her knees, looking down at her. Xena's eyes are open, as no one else has caught up to them yet. Xena speaks, her lips barely moving.
Work your magic.
Not my magic.
She looks up and spots Merlin, who holds up his staff. He's still hidden in the trees, but a pale mist drifts out from the end of his staff, and falls over both Xena and Gabrielle, before it disappears from view. Xena jerks slightly, her eyes still open.
What was that?
When they come to check you, they
won't be able to see you breathing,
or feel your heartbeat or your pulse.
She places one hand over Xena's heart.
But I will. Let's see if we can
fool them. Wish me luck.
Xena places her hand over Gabrielle's and closes her eyes, smiling slightly.
You can do it, sweetheart.
Xena grows completely still and her smile disappears. Gabrielle looks uphill where several soldiers are running toward them, Arthur and Lancelot included. She draws a deep breath and looks up at the sky yelling in mock despair with a vehemence that isn’t complete feigned.
She leans over, laying her head against Xena's heart. A tiny smile plays at her lips, and we hear the sound of a heartbeat for a moment. The smile vanishes and she begins to sob loudly, as the men reach her.
He sees all the blood and steps closer and kneels down, feeling Xena's neck.
(cont’d, his voice breaking)
I'm sorry, Gabrielle.
She beats Xena's chest, as Merlin steps from the trees and makes a show of gently pulling her away from Xena. He leans down and feels Xena's heart. He stands and Gabrielle moves back to Xena, resuming her position, sobbing loudly.
The queen has fallen!
Behind them, the battle is dying down, as the Saxons once again begin to retreat. The army of Camelot is giving chase, and their voices rise up in victorious cheers, as the Saxons begin running down the path.
EXT. SHORELINE - DAY
We see Saxons boarding their boats, and shoving away from shore.
CUT BACK TO:
EXT. HILLSIDE BATTLEFIELD - DAY
Gabrielle stands, with tears running down her face. She picks up Excalibur and runs down the hill and through the trees, reaching the edge of the lake.
EXT. VIVIANE'S LAKE - DAY
With a great swing, Gabrielle heaves Excalibur into the lake and waits expectantly as the sword slowly sinks. Nothing happens.
I call upon you, Lady.
Xena has fallen in battle.
Come see for yourself.
The surface of the lake ripples and churns, and we see Viviane rise. She begins to walk across the surface of the water with Excalibur in one hand.
THE LADY VIVIANE
So I heard. I would have thought
a great warrior like Xena would
not be so easily defeated.
We weren't defeated.
She did what you wanted.
I hope you're satisfied.
Gabrielle stomps off back up the hill to Xena's side.
CUT BACK TO:
EXT. HILLSIDE BATTLEFIELD - DAY
After a few moments, Viviane appears through the trees. By now, most of the army has gathered around Xena's fallen body, standing at a respectful distance. We hear a collective gasp as they see Viviane, along with murmurs of her name. Many of them drop to one knee and bow their heads.
Viviane walks over to Xena and Gabrielle, water pooling in her wake. She kneels down and feels Xena's heart.
THE LADY VIVIANE
No heartbeat, just as you said.
A great warrior has fallen today.
She emphasizes the word fallen, and reaches over to touch Gabrielle's heart. She leans close and it appears she is consoling Gabrielle.
THE LADY VIVIANE
Interesting. You have no
heartbeat either, Lady Gabrielle.
Gabrielle's eyes grow wide, and Xena's eyelids flutter but remain closed. Viviane stands and gives Gabrielle the barest ghost of a wink, then holds Excalibur out toward Arthur.
THE LADY VIVIANE
Arthur, come claim your birthright.
Arthur solemnly walks toward her, his hand trembling as he reaches for the sword. Slowly, his fist closes around it, and he raises it skyward, as a few tears track down his cheeks.
Long live Camelot!
The men who remain standing join their comrades in kneeling at his feet. He turns toward Xena and crosses Excalibur over his chest.
To a mighty fallen warrior.
Gabrielle, we're ever so sorry.
If you need a home....
Merlin clears his throat and interrupts.
This old wizard has a
few tricks left yet.
He raises his arms and staff over Xena, and closes his eyes, mumbling under his breath. Gabrielle takes Xena's hand and holds it against her own heart.
Is it beating?
Xena quirks one eyebrow and smiles. Gabrielle sighs with relief and kisses Xena's hand.
I think you're supposed to
come back to life now.
Xena nods just a little and her eyes flutter open. She stretches and yawns, then slowly sits up.
Gabrielle takes her in her arms, holding her close, as she looks up at Merlin.
It's a miracle! Merlin....
THE LADY VIVIANE
A miracle indeed.
She pauses, as if considering something, then turns to Arthur.
THE LADY VIVIANE
Go in good health, Arthur.
Excalibur is yours to use,
as you lead your people.
Arthur humbly bows his head.
As I serve my people.
Thank you, my Lady.
THE LADY VIVIANE
Merlin... I trust I'll see
you on Avalon soon?
Viviane seems satisfied, and she begins to walk back toward the trees and the lake, disappearing in a mist before their eyes.
(cont’d, to the crowd)
Go on inside and prepare the feast.
I'm certain Xena and Gabrielle
need a moment alone.
After a few long stares, the men disperse and begin walking up the hill toward the castle. Xena and Gabrielle slowly stand, helping each other up.
Merlin, our hearts....
They beat as one. As Xena's
heart goes, so goes yours.
Xena takes Gabrielle's hand and squeezes it.
Can we go home now?
Xena rolls her eyes and appears to be almost in pain.
Oh, all right.
After the banquet?
After the banquet, I'll send
you anywhere you want to go.
He moves between them and drapes his arms across their shoulders, and they begin to walk uphill toward the castle.
INT. BANQUET HALL - NIGHT
The hall is full of revelers and tables are covered in mostly empty dinner plates. Wine is flowing freely, and out in the middle of the tables, musicians are playing lively tunes while a few couples dance off to the side.
Xena and Gabrielle are standing in the doorway, looking on.
Glad that's over.
Me too. The party
was fun, though.
Yeah, but a few more
toasts, and I think both
of us would be toasted.
They laugh, as Arthur and a beautiful young woman approach them. It's the same woman Xena saw trysting with Lancelot in the garden on their fist night in Camelot.
Xena, Gabrielle. There you are.
Are you about to leave?
As soon as we can
tear Merlin away.
Over in a corner, Merlin is doing magic tricks, to the delight of several children.
You'd be welcome to stay, Xena,
both of you. I could always use
someone of your caliber in my army.
Thanks, but no thanks. Camelot...
and Britannia... are all yours.
You'll be a fine king, Arthur.
Thanks to you and Gabrielle. Before
you go, I'd like you to meet my fiancée.
This is the Lady Guinevere. We're
to be married in the spring.
Guinevere recognizes Xena, and has the good sense to blush in shame.
Pleased to meet you.
Pleased to meet you, too.
(mumbling to herself)
Hoo boy. I've fixed all the
problems I intend to fix here.
Did you say something?
(with a fake smile)
I said, pleased to meet
you, Lady Guinevere.
Xena and Guinevere stare at each other awkwardly, as Arthur and Gabrielle look on in puzzlement. They are saved as Merlin approaches them.
Do you two want to stay
the night, or leave now?
XENA AND GABRIELLE
Goodbye and farewell to both
of you. Come visit if you ever
find yourself this way again.
We will. Good luck.
Xena eyes the still blushing Guinevere.
You've no idea.
Very well. Think of where you
want to be, and I'll send you there.
Xena and Gabrielle clasp hands and Merlin waves his staff in front of them. They disappear in a shower of sparkles.
END OF ACT FOUR
EXT. FOREST CLEARING - NIGHT
The moon shines down through the trees into a tiny clearing. Overhead are a million twinkling stars. A fire burns in a neatly made fire ring, and a double set of sleeping furs is spread out beside the fire. A travel bag is hanging from a low tree branch, and a saddle is tossed over a log next to the tree. A pot of water is simmering over the fire.
Off to the side, Argo is munching on grass. Her ears prick up and she whinnies in startlement, as Xena and Gabrielle appear in a shower of sparkles. When Argo realizes it's them, her placid expression returns, and she goes back to grazing, as if this is an everyday occurrence. Xena and Gabrielle look around and then at each other and smile.
Home. Thank the gods.
You can say that again.
They go about stowing armor and weapons, and Xena plops down on the bedroll. Gabrielle spots the now boiling water.
You want some tea?
Sure. That would
hit the spot.
Gabrielle moves to their travel bag and opens it, reaching inside. She feels something and frowns, and pulls it out. It's the grail, though it remains in its wooden state.
Nothing. Just hunting
for the tea leaves.
She carefully peers into the grail, and Merlin's face appears in a smoky vision. He winks at her once and the vision vanishes. She drops the grail into her bag as if it's bitten her, and hastily finds tea leaves and mugs, moving to the fire and setting them to steep.
She looks back at the bag once more and shakes her head, then joins Xena on the furs. They lay back next to each other, ankles crossed and arms behind their heads, looking up at the stars.
Remind me to be careful
what I touch from now on.
Gabrielle stares at her, then at her bag, then back at Xena again. She settles back on the furs and sighs.
Me too. Do you think the
world is really round?
Xena points up at the moon.
Moon's round. Sun's round. If you
look at the horizon at sea, it looks
sort of round at the edges. Could be.
Gabrielle seems satisfied with this.
That makes sense. But it
seems like the people on the
bottom would fall off.
Not that I'm complaining, but I
wonder why Merlin sent us here?
I figured he'd send us back to
the inn he took us from.
Oh, that's easy. He said to think
of where we wanted to be, and
this is what I thought of.
No kidding. One night in that
castle made me miss... this.
She turns on her side facing Xena, and props her head up on her hand.
Question is, if you thought
we'd end up at the inn, how'd
we both end up here?
Xena mimics her posture, leaning close and tracing Gabrielle's arm with her fingertip.
That's easy too. I wasn't thinking
of the inn. I was thinking I wanted
to go wherever you wanted to go.
Gabrielle gives Xena a charmed smile.
Xena pulls her close and kisses her, then pulls back, touching noses.
They kiss again, as we ….
No legendary relics were harmed during the making of this episode;
however, Galahad is rumored to be in therapy, seeking a new life purpose.