|Episode Guide||Teaser||Act 1||Act 2||Act 3||Act 4|
EXT. AMAZON CAMP - CENTRAL AREA
The Amazons gather around a roughly constructed platform. There is little decoration, but the atmosphere is best described as reluctantly happy, with a little resignation on the edges. Gabrielle stands to one side, next to some of the Northern Amazons, awaiting Xena’s return.
The fire pit in the middle of the camp is started, and the flames pop up in the breeze.
Xena appears on the path and runs towards them. Gabrielle watches through the fire as she approaches and their eyes meet through the flames.
The shortest possible path is through the fire, and that’s the path Xena chooses. She leaps into the air as she reaches the far side of the fire pit and soars over the fire, tumbling in mid air as she ends up landing neatly at Gabrielle’s side.
Thank you. Glad you liked it.
Xena faces the Amazons.
We’re trapped between two oncoming
armies. There’s no more time. We pack,
we leave. You stay, you die.
Xena puts an arm around Gabrielle’s shoulders.
Raya is stubborn to the last.
You’re not joined yet.
Give us a few minutes.
But you can’t. She threw the
knives away. Into the lake.
Gabrielle looks at Xena. Adelia looks at Xena. Everyone looks at Xena.
That’s right. I did.
A low murmur rises. These were genuine Amazon icons, and even those predisposed to like and follow Xena are shocked.
Everyone is silent for a bit.
All right. You know, I’m glad.
Now everyone stares at Gabrielle.
Those knives... that legend you told us,
Adelia... it’s very poetic, but if you really
think about it, it’s very sad. They traded
themselves for the safely of the Amazons.
It is. That is true.
I don’t want to carry on that tradition.
Gabrielle turns to Xena.
So we’ll make our own legacy.
Xena nods slowly.
Then let’s do it.
The Amazons start to gather around them. The wind picks up a little, and the fire crackles. In the shadows between the fire and sunlight, you could almost imagine other shadows forming, watching along with the rest.
EXT. AMAZON VILLAGE - CEREMONIAL PLATFORM - AFTERNOON
The sun is traveling to the west. The light is moving from yellow to golden as Gabrielle and Xena step up onto the platform and face each other.
Xena reaches over and moves one of Gabrielle’s dangling hair clips over. Gabrielle smiles, and clears her throat.
Adelia, dressed as an Amazon shamaness, walks slowly up onto the platform, flanked by two armed Amazons. They stop next to Xena and Gabrielle. Adelia takes hold of Xena and Gabrielle’s arms and turns them towards her.
In the tradition of the Amazon people,
we are gathered here to witness the
joining of an Amazon with the person
she chooses to share her life with.
Xena smiles quietly. Despite the seriousness of the occasion, Gabrielle cannot repress a grin.
And in so joining with that person,
make them a part of the Amazon nation.
A low drumming begins in the background.
In our traditions, we challenge the two
to be joined to overcome a hurdle, a
trial of pain so that they know the
price of their being made one.
The drumming gets louder. A few of the Amazons begin to softly chant.
A trial of pain, to overcome, and a sharing
of blood to seal the bond between the
two of you - that is what we require.
Gabrielle takes a deep breath. She looks at Xena, who gives her a reassuring smile.
We would customarily use the sacred
knife relics of our people in this.
Everyone looks at Xena. The drumming and chanting stop. Gabrielle takes a step forward.
Since Xena’s life has intertwined with
the fates of the Amazons for a long time,
I think it’s right that this ceremony be
sealed with a blade that is a part of her.
Xena’s brow creases, she is unsure of what Gabrielle is up to. She starts to go for her sword, but Gabrielle grabs her hand and holds it still.
Then Gabrielle removes the chakram from Xena’s hip, and with a slight twist, separates it into its two halves. One half she hands to Xena, and the other she keeps herself. She turns to face Adelia.
We’re ready. Go on.
Adelia nods slowly in approval.
It will be so.
The drumming starts again, and the chanting. Xena and Gabrielle turn and face each other.
It is easy to bear pain brought by one’s
self. Harder is it to bring pain on one
you love. This is the trial we demand.
You must shed each other’s blood.
The Amazons move closer, and the drumming gets louder and faster. Now most of the Amazons are chanting.
Gabrielle grips her half of the chakram, and extends her other hand to Xena. Their eyes meet.
No pressure points.
Xena’s eyes twinkle momentarily. She looks Gabrielle right in the eye as she takes her hand and draws the half chakram over it, cutting a deep gash in her palm.
Gabrielle doesn’t even flinch.
The drums get louder. Xena extends her hand to Gabrielle.
Gabrielle holds Xena’s hand steady and positions the half chakram, hesitating for just an instant before she puts pressure down and cuts through Xena’s palm.
Blood drips from both hands.
The drums become deafening. The Amazons crowd close around the platform, seeming far more than the pitiful two score left.
Gabrielle raises her hand and extends it to Xena. Xena takes it in her hand, so that their cut palms are pressed against each other.
With their other hands, they fit the chakram together, so that it is once again whole.
The Amazons start to sing and dance around them, but Xena and Gabrielle only have eyes for each other. They move closer to each other, then go very still, eyes locked, the world around them disregarded.
And so, two are made one, and the
blood of an outsider is brought into the
Amazon Nation. Xena, we welcome you.
Xena leans forward and kisses Gabrielle. Their hands are still clasped together.
Ephiny stands near the fire, its flames visible through her transparency. Her eyes are filled with tears.
Unexpectedly, in the midst of the dancing, Xena and Gabrielle collapse. The Amazons nearest the platform jump back in startled confusion. Adelia recovers first.
Take them to the queens’ chambers. While
they recover, we must make ready to leave.
Amazons start running in all directions. On the platform, Xena and Gabrielle lay in each other’s arms, dead to the world.
EXT. FOREST GLADE - NIGHT
A glow of fire is seen far off in the sky. Two of the Amazon lookouts spot the glow, and quickly climb to the top of trees to check it out.
As they get to the top of the trees, they can see the tops of the forest on fire across the next ridge. The lookouts scramble down out of the tree and start running.
EXT. AMAZON VILLAGE - CENTRAL AREA - VERY LATE NIGHT
It is chaos. Bags and sacks are everywhere. Amazons run to and fro in and out of the firelight, carrying supplies and possessions.
The two lookouts dash into the circle of light and run up to Raya and Adelia.
What is it?
The fire’s getting closer.
We’re running out of time.
Convenient for our leader... excuse
me, our leaders to be asleep!
Raya storms off. Adelia looks worried.
Sleep? If it were only that simple.
INT. AMAZON QUEEN’S QUARTERS - SAME TIME
Xena and Gabrielle lie on the bed together. Their hands are still clasped. Xena’s chakram lies on the foot of the bed. Their eyes are closed.
The sounds of the Amazons packing and running around are clearly audible through the open window.
Xena and Gabrielle do not react to any of it.
EXT. FOREST GLADE - SAME TIME
Men work methodically through the darkness. They are lighting fires, and using hand axes to clear underbrush. Behind them, a line of men on horseback wait, with torches.
Behind them, a line of archers stand ready.
Keep your eyes out boys! They
could attack at any moment!
There are thousands of them!
EXT. AMAZON VILLAGE - CENTRAL AREA
Things are being brought out that it would be impossible to transport. Cases of half fletched arrows, long sticks for bows, etc.
Stop it! We can’t take that!
You would have us leave our
land, and go destitute as well?
You’re worse than Xena!
I told you not to listen to her.
INT. AMAZON QUEEN’S QUARTERS - LATER
Xena and Gabrielle open their eyes at the same time, and look at each other.
Xena looks down at their still joined hands.
Xena carefully unclasps her hand. The dried blood has made the wounds adhere to each other and it is a painful process. Gabrielle watches, then examines her palm when Xena completes her task.
Great symbolism with the chakram,
Gabrielle, but it’d woulda been a
lot faster healing if you’d picked
one of your sais instead.
No way to make a pinprick
with a circular blade, huh?
They fall silent, looking into each other’s eyes.
Feel any different?
Yeah... a little. It feels... closer.
Closer? Gabrielle you’re
lying in my arms.
No... not that kind of close.
Gabrielle strokes Xena’s face with her uninjured hand.
Like I can feel your heart
beating in my chest.
I wouldn’t have put it like that, but
yeah, I think I know what you mean.
Xena kisses Gabrielle. It goes on for an extended length of time. They part.
They both smile.
The sounds outside break into their little nest of self-discovery at this point and they realize it is chaos outside.
Looks like we’re not gonna get
a chance to enjoy it right now.
Gabrielle pulls Xena back down and they kiss again. Finally they part.
Not right now. But soon.
After we rescue the Amazons.
Gabrielle strokes Xena’s face again.
Xena hugs her.
EXT. AMAZON CAMP - DAWN
The camp is now far more organized chaos. Amazons stand ready, with packs on their backs. Piles of discarded supplies, and belongings lay scattered about.
The sound of the fire is now evident, and far off, the shouts of the army can be heard.
Xena and Gabrielle stride into the center of camp. They are both in Amazon leathers and armed. Gabrielle shades her eyes and looks towards the oncoming danger.
We need to get out of here.
It’s getting close.
Let’s move. If we leave them enough
booty behind, maybe they’ll get distracted.
Gabrielle picks up her staff.
They can hear crashing behind them now.
Get moving! Up the trail!
Raya and Deliz hesitate.
We should stay and fight them!
Xena watches the Amazons start to move out. She turns to Raya.
Xena starts after the last of the Amazons. The sounds behind them are getting louder, and louder. Gabrielle looks at Raya and Deliz.
Raya and Deliz exchange looks, then reluctantly start walking, looking behind them as they follow Xena up the trail.
Gabrielle is the last one left. She walks through the Amazon village and pauses at the head of the trail, for one last look.
For a moment as she looks, she sees shadows of the past looking back at her. Then she rubs her eyes and they vanish. She turns, and heads out.
No ancient Amazon marriage traditions were harmed
in the making of this
TO BE CONTINUED....