|Episode Guide||Teaser||Act 1||Act 2||Act 3||Act 4|
EXT. THE STREETS OF ROME - DAY
Gabrielle guides Argo II along the road. The streets are crowded, and they are given curious looks from those around them.
Romans always give me
Xena looks around.
They crucified us?
Hmm. Yeah. Maybe that was it.
Xena ducks to one side and snatches something, then returns and hands Gabrielle a small bag.
Your drachmas, lady. Otherwise,
Gabrielle examines the leather bag, which jingles.
Where did you get this?
Xena gives her 'the look'. Gabrielle hastily puts the bag away in her robes, and looks around. Xena points down a pathway.
You've got some memory,
Xena glances at the sign that says "Coliseum" with an arrow pointing the direction they are going.
Just one of my many skills.
EXT. ROMAN COLISEUM - DAY
The walls of the stadium rise above them, throwing the road into shadow. Xena and Gabrielle walk up the long ramp to the stone gates, where they are greeted by yet more guards. These guards are dressed in fine armor, however. They regard both Gabrielle on her horse, and Xena walking alongside, with evident disdain.
Hold. What business have you here?
Gabrielle stops Argo II.
I have brought my slave here
The guards walk forward and examine Xena. They laugh.
A woman? Go on with you, and take her to
Xena's hands tense on the shackles. Her eyes narrow.
Hey, wait a minute! I'm not kidding.
The guards laugh.
Citizen, you got taken. Go on and see if you
can get some of it back at the slave auction.
Gabrielle hears the iron start to creak.
Now, c'mon! You guys can't just send us
The guards roll their eyes.
C'mon, what can it hurt?
The guards look.
(under her breath)
C'mon a little closer, boys.
Well, yeah, but....
And look at these shoulders! I'm sure
Gabrielle slaps Xena on the back. The guards tire of the scene. They shrug.
Okay, fine. Give me her tether.
Gabrielle unclips the Xena's chain from her saddle and hands it over. She lets her hand brush over Xena's head on the way back. She leans over.
Xena pats Gabrielle on the calf before she is lead away by the guards. Gabrielle watches until they disappear through the gates.
Please be careful.
The gates close behind Xena and the guards. Gabrielle is left alone on the ramp. Slowly she turns Argo II around, and moves off.
INT. GLADIATOR TRAINING PITS - DAY
A ramp descends into a dark, noisome space full of gladiators in training. It is the basement, essentially, of the stadium and there is little light. The floor is covered in dirty straw, and all around are square stalls where fighter wannabe's are hunkering.
From the top of the ramp, the guards throw Xena into this pit. She hits the floor and rolls, getting her feet under her and standing up. The guards laugh, and leave, slamming the door behind them.
Xena looks around. She is noticed by the slaves nearest her, and immediately attracts attention.
Ooo… Look what
Xena steps back and realizes she's being surrounded.
MALE SLAVE #2
We've been asking for action.
You don't wanna do that.
MALE SLAVE #1
Oh, yes we do. You know how long it's
The two men lunge for Xena. Xena snaps the iron chains shackling her wrists and whirls the ends, using them as a weapon and wrapping them around the men's necks. She yanks hard, and they spin like tops, cracking their heads together with a very annoying noise. The men both collapse to the floor. Xena faces the rest of the slaves, arrested in mid motion across from her.
Xena twirls her chains suggestively. The rest of the slaves slowly back off, tiptoeing away from her. Xena points at them.
*YOU* are all NOT my type.
Xena walks forward, stepping over the two unconscious men. She starts searching the stalls one by one.
INT. ROMAN NOBLE'S CLASSY INN - DAY
A tall, blond woman in white robes leads Gabrielle through a marble and stone hallway into a high ceilinged, light and airy room.
Will this do, citizen? We have another,
Gabrielle looks around.
I'll manage. Thanks.
The woman ducks her head, and leaves. Gabrielle walks around the large chamber, her fingers brushing over the silken wall hangings. Against one wall is a large, soft bed.
Well. This sure beats the bushes.
Gabrielle stops, as she hears voices nearby. She walks out onto the small balcony and listens.
Darling, I know you've worn that
Yes, darling, but Marielius will be there,
Gabrielle has been spotted. She joins the two other women near a fountain in the center of the courtyard. They, too, are dressed in togas, and wear jewels at their throats and ears.
You're new here, aren't you? I am
And I am Carolia, wife of no one.
It's nice to meet you. My name is Tellus...
Live here? Eek. No, my dear. We're here
The gladiator contests. Big men, lots of
Oh! Yeah! What a coincidence! I’m here
Selenia and Carolia exchange significant glances.
Really? How interesting! Why we're just
Yes, do! You must. I'm sure the
The two nobles take hold of Gabrielle's arms and start to guide her off.
Um… okay. Sure. I love a good party.
Gabrielle allows them to escort her away.
INT. GLADIATOR TRAINING PIT - LATER THAT DAY
Two Roman gladiator trainers enter, carrying an armful of short swords each. The first one takes out a stick and beats a gong next to the door loudly.
Xena covers her ears. She is standing near the back of the chamber, having had no success in finding Beowulf.
All right, you scum! Everyone over here,
The warrior wannabe's shuffle forward and take swords from the two men. They obviously don't much know what to do with them. Xena is one of the last to take a sword.
Hey! What's a woman doing in here!
Just my luck.
Want me to take her outta here?
Xena decides to turn on the charm. She saunters over and chucks the trainer under the chin with the hilt of her practice sword.
Oh, I'm sure a little old girl like me
You don't mind, do you? Nice big
You can stay. I'll train you myself.
I knew it was my lucky day.
The gladiators all start to mill around, waving the short swords. Xena ducks gracefully and avoids getting an unfortunate haircut. She continues to look around, searching the men's faces. The trainer catches her arm.
You ready to learn from
Xena smiles at him.
Oh yeah. Teach me, big boy.
The trainer grins broadly and leads her off.
INT. ROMAN NOBLE'S CLASSY INN PARTY ROOM - LATE AFTERNOON
The room is full of Roman nobles, drinking wine and lying to each other. In modern times, it would be remarkably like a business cocktail party, only with monochrome fashions and no pigs in blankets.
Gabrielle is standing near one of the windows, sipping a glass of wine, and appearing to listen to a large, blustering man in front of her speak.
I tell you, Tellus, it's all in the wrist!
Wow. That's a really useful skill.
Ankles? Ankles? What about ‘em?
Well, my slave can break a
You don't say. Really?
The blustering man looks around carefully.
Keep that quiet, citizen.
Profit? What do you mean?
The man looks around again, then motions Gabrielle to follow him.
Shh. Let's talk.
Gabrielle also looks around, then follows the man through a nearby doorway.
INT. GLADIATOR TRAINING PITS - EARLY EVENING
The gladiators in training are paired off against each other, and each has a short sword. The trainers are attempting to teach them basic moves.
Xena stands nearby, going through the motions with her opponent without paying much attention to him. She blocks his feeble strikes easily, but does not try to best him. He swings against her, and she steps out of the way, then she lifts the short sword and takes a clumsy swipe at him, which unexpectedly connects, ringing his bell.
No. I’m learning! I’m learning.
Xena is distracted by a yell, barely heard from beyond the wall. She listens intently, then she starts nudging her opponent towards the wall.
Xena blocks the man's strike and pushes him back.
Xena leans closer to the wall. She can hear voices, but not clearly enough to hear the words. There is a voice she thinks is familiar.
Xena turns, to see the guard beating on her opponent. Her push threw the man against the guard, and now he's paying for it.
Ow! Wait! It was an accident!
The guard swats him on the back of his head with the sword, then he knocks him down and stands over him, raising his weapon and laughing.
Xena reacts without hesitation or thought. She blocks the soldier’s sword and roundhouse kicks him back. The soldier staggers, then comes at her, furious. He swings his sword at her. Xena neatly deflects it, rolling her sword over her forearm and ducking under the soldier's swing. Xena boots him in the rear.
The guard whirls and yells in outrage, leaping at her.
Xena stands her ground. She waits for the attack, then disarms the soldier easily, whirling and gracefully nailing the guard in the head with her elbow, sending him down and out.
He said it was an accident.
The guard rolls over and drops his sword.
A loud gong rings out. Everyone freezes. The Roman trainer points slowly at Xena.
The slaves move nervously back from Xena. The guards surround her.
You are not what you seem.
Xena takes a step and puts her back against the wall.
END OF ACT TWO