|Episode Guide||Teaser||Act 1||Act 2||Act 3||Act 4|
INT. EGYPTIAN TEMPLE - INNER CHAMBER - SHORT TIME LATER
The room is in an absolute shambles. It is obvious that Xena has attempted to use every single piece of furniture or wall decoration to try and open the door.
Xena lifts a marble statue and walks over, hurling it against the door in an act of utter frustration. It smashes to bits with a huge noise but the portal remains untouched.
Son of a Bacchae.
Thanks. I was having a
little trouble finding you.
Xena turns and picks up a goblet, flinging it against the far wall. It bounces off and lands with a clatter.
Gabrielle walks to her and removes the Eye of Hephaestus from under her robes.
Xena stares at the Eye.
Did you find Ares?
Oh, I found him all right. He's got
some guy with a dog's head
breaking up the chakram in THERE!
Gabrielle looks at the door.
In there? What do you
mean, breaking it?
Xena sits down in the one remaining chair. She is visibly upset.
He's splitting it up into its
dark and light sides.
Guess which one he wants.
Gabrielle walks to the inner door and studies it.
To draw you back to him?
Something like that.
Gabrielle shakes her head.
Same old, same old.
Well, we've got the Eye.
Let's go use it.
Xena gets up and walks over to Gabrielle. She takes the Eye from her, and looks at it.
You got it. Their goddess
just gave it up?
No. Qetesh had it. She's
their goddess of love.
I gave her something
she valued in return.
Xena stares at Gabrielle. Gabrielle looks evenly back at her. After a minute, Xena's eyes drop.
All right. Let's go.
Xena and Gabrielle turn to leave, when they hear running footsteps approaching.
Xena pulls Gabrielle behind the door in the room and holds her tightly as the door bursts open and a squad of Egyptian guards rushes in. They look at the destruction in the room.
The leader of the guards tries the inner door, then turns around, apparently satisfied.
That way! They must be
headed for the treasury!
The guards rush out. After a moment of quiet, Xena swings the door open and releases Gabrielle. They peer out the door cautiously, then leave at a run.
INT. ARES’ TEMPLE - NIGHT
Ares stands in the center of his temple. He is surrounded by a dark purple glow, which outlines his body and lights up the inside of the temple.
Mmm..... How could I
have let this go?
He slowly begins to turn. As he does, light extends out and touches the interior of the temple. Where it touches, the temple transforms from a beaten up, rubble filled room to a seductive palace.
The broken altar is remade, and the walls close in and become whole and draped with scarlet and black velvet.
Ares holds the Dark Chakram up. It is a familiar perfect circle, with glowing stones in its rim, simple and glittering with power.
Now for the fun part.
Ares closes his eyes and outside a rumble of thunder is heard.
INT/ EGYPTIAN TEMPLE - CATACOMBS - NIGHT
Xena and Gabrielle run down the hallway towards an open door, with the squad of soldiers pelting after them. They raced into the room and in perfect synchronicity, draw their weapons, turn to face their pursuers, and let out yells at the top of their voices.
XENA AND GABRIELLE
The guards find themselves in a fight for their lives. They battle Xena and Gabrielle, but it soon becomes obvious they are way overmatched.
Xena engages the closest one, trading slashes between her sword and his curved ax like weapon. He tries to hack her hand off, but Xena whirls and hooks the axe on her sword blade, pulling the man over her shoulder and dumping him on the floor.
Gabrielle catches another man's curved, sharp hook on her sais, booting him in the groin as they struggle to overcome each other. The man bends over, and Gabrielle pulls her sais loose and slams the hilts of them on the top of his head. He falls.
Two other men attack in a group, two of them attempting to spit Gabrielle and Xena on their spears, while the others stab at them with swords.
Working as a team, Xena and Gabrielle disarm them one after the other, Xena grabbing one man's sword arm while Gabrielle kicks the sword out of his hand, then Gabrielle letting a spear go past her and catching hold of it as Xena leaps into the air and turns in a flip, catching them man around the neck with both feet and sending him to the ground.
They are demons!
Not this time.
Xena slugs a guard, who flips backwards over Gabrielle's kneeling form. Gabrielle nails him in the jaw with her elbow as he falls.
The last man turns and runs, calling for help.
Xena dusts her hands off, and sheathes her sword. She grabs Gabrielle's arm and they run down the steps into the catacombs.
EXT. ARES’ TEMPLE - MORNING
The sun rises over Ares restored temple. He walks outside and stretches, admiring his handiwork. In front of the temple is a road, and as he looks down the road, we can see towns in the distance.
There is a gong outside. Ares picks up the ringer next to it and lets fly, making the gong ring out with a hideous noise.
The echoes flow down the road. Far off, moving figures stop, and look up towards the temple.
Ares looks behind him. The restored temple glows with a red/gold light, throbbing against the clouds. He laughs. He beats the gong again and again, sending out a call the people below seem to hear, and begin to obey.
EXT. SHIP - AT SEA - EVENING
Gabrielle sits near the bow. It is overcast, and a spray comes over the boat's rail from the stormy seas. Gabrielle's face is roughly the same color as the water, and she looks miserable.
Xena appears and sits down next to her. She holds a cup, and after swirling it in her hands, she offers it to Gabrielle.
This should help.
Gabrielle takes the cup. She drinks from it, then sets it down and looks out at the clouds.
I'm sorry now we ran for the boat.
It was the last one back home,
Gabrielle. You rather walk?
Let me get back to you on that.
They sit quietly together for a while.
I've been thinking.
This time it has to be for good,
Gabrielle. We can't just... bust up
whatever game Ares is playing this time.
Gabrielle shifts and looks at Xena.
Ah. For the greater good, right?
Xena rests her arm on her knee and shakes her head.
No. For us.
As long as he's out there, he'll
want me. As long as he wants me,
you and I will never have peace.
Gabrielle seems speechless. Xena doesn't look at her. She studies the endless sea.
I want peace.
Gabrielle turns and faces Xena.
Xena, I'm going to ask you
something, and I want you to tell
me the truth, no matter what it is.
Is he your father?
Xena seems almost relieved at the question, as though she had been expecting something else.
Even though he....
Even though he said so. He lied.
Now, I'm gonna ask you
something, and I want the truth.
About the Eye....
It was given to Qetesh as
protection, from Set,
the god of lust.
I traded her one
protection for another.
Xena frowns, then her eyes go from Gabrielle's face to her back, hidden under her cloak. She looks back at Gabrielle's face in question. Gabrielle smiles.
You gave up the dragon?
That was meant... to replace you.
Gabrielle looks out over the sea.
You had them give it to me because
you knew you wouldn't be around any
more and you thought it would help me.
Xena is silent.
I hated it.
Xena nods in understanding.
This is not going to be easy.
By the time we get back, he'll have
had time to build up a following.
Whatever it takes, we'll do it.
Gabrielle puts her hand on Xena's cheek, then she leans forward and kisses her passionately. They part.
Xena nods, and also smiles. The ship pitches up suddenly, and crashes down and a wave sweeps over the bow and drenches them.
EXT. ARES’ TEMPLE - WEEKS LATER - NIGHT
The scene is totally different now. Outside Ares' temple is a huge camp, full of hundreds of men and women. Ares' banner flies over the tent, and it is obvious these are his new acolytes.
It is a camp of war, with weapons stacked everywhere, and men sparring in every corner, hoping to attract Ares eye. But there are women here also. Fighting, and as servants. They cook and clean around the fighters, wearing Ares' red colors tied to their upper arms proudly.
Ares’ Temple is now a magnificent edifice. Gold panels line the front, and the steps have been laid with marble slabs. Torches line the entrance, and a line of guards stands before the temple, weapons shined to an almost painful glare.
Ares appears on the roof of his temple, laying down on his side and reviewing his new worshippers with a big, sexy grin.
Now this is more like it.
A group of six men march up the steps, bearing a chest. They walk inside the temple.
Oo... Wonder if there’s
a virgin in there.
Ares laughs, then he rolls over and looks up at the stars, putting his hands behind his head.
Ares sits up and dangles his legs off the edge of the roof. He looks out into the darkness... past the crowd, past the torches.
Where are you, Xena? I can
feel you out there... I know
you can feel me calling you.
Ares lifts the Dark Chakram and looks up at the moon through it.
You can feel this. You want it.
You always have.
Come to me.
Ares closes his eyes, and the chakram glows.
WOODS OUTSIDE ARES’ TEMPLE - NIGHT - SAME TIME
A bar of moonlight outlines Xena's eyes. She stands in the shadows of the trees, looking out over Ares' new temple, and the crowd around it.
Gabrielle steps up next to her.
Look at them.
Gabrielle hesitantly shakes her head.
Are they? Maybe some people do
need something to believe in, Xena.
Xena turns and looks at her as though she has lost her mind.
Gabrielle smiles briefly.
I don't mean him. In general. I used
to think somewhere out there, I'd
find something I could put my faith in.
That I could believe in and have
that make my life make sense.
Xena's lips tense.
Guess you know better now, huh?
Gabrielle smiles and looks at Xena, though Xena can't see her in the dark.
Something like that, yeah.
Xena's eyes drop briefly, then she turns and puts a hand on Gabrielle's shoulder.
Are we ready?
As we'll ever be.
All right. Let's go.
Gabrielle reaches up and catches Xena's face, drawing it down to kiss her. They kiss for a long moment, then part.
They nod, then turn and disappear into the darkness.
INT. ARES’ TEMPLE - NIGHT - LATER
Ares sits in his newly, and magnificently rebuilt throne chair above a huge, marble slab altar. The altar is stained with blood, and there are offerings draped over it.
A naked woman dances seductively on the steps, and Ares slowly swirls a cup of wine as he watches her. He hums along with the music from two other scantily clad women near the wall, who are playing instruments for the dance.
It just doesn't get any
better than this.
The door opens suddenly, and Xena and Gabrielle enter.
Ah.... Maybe it does.
About time you got here.
Xena strolls around the temple, skirting the musicians with disdain.
Suckers born every minute....
And you've got a year's
worth here, dontcha?
Gabrielle walks over to the altar. The naked woman looks at her. Gabrielle looks back, gives her a sweet smile, and shakes her head slightly. She puts a finger on the altar, then looks at the rusty stain on it.
Ares gets up and puts his cup down.
Whoa, whoa, whoa.
He puts hands on hips.
This... is MY temple.
That's for sure.
Shut up, shortie. In fact, I've got business
with your better half, so why don't you
go outside and pick your navel, huh?
Xena completes her inspection. She ends up near the foot of the altar. She puts her hands on the marble and leans on it.
You know what your
problem is, Ares?
Baby, I have no
problems, not anymore.
Ares steps down and brushes by Gabrielle, stopping when he reaches Xena. He turns her around to face him.
Now that you're here.
Behind his back, Gabrielle rolls her eyes. Xena looks Ares up and down, and strikes a seductive pose.
What makes you think
I'm here for you?
Baby, you know you are. You've
always had it for me, right here.
Ares slaps Xena just below her navel. Xena's eyes narrow.
You've always thought
that, haven’t you?
That you've got a love
thing for me? Sure.
Ares reaches to pull Xena into an embrace. Xena evades him neatly, stepping around him to end up next to Gabrielle.
Like I said, know what your
problem is, Ares? You never
really did get a handle on love.
Ares snorts. Xena turns to Gabrielle and holds her hand out. Gabrielle accepts it, and allows herself to be drawn over to Xena. She tilts her head and waits, watching Xena's face.
See that, Ares? Love is
the look in her eyes.
Ares rolls his. Xena cups Gabrielle's face.
Love is equal, Ares. Love is two
people sharing.... Everything.
Xena, you're killing me here.
Xena pulls Gabrielle closer and they slide into a passionate kiss, their bodies melding together for so long it leaves Ares cross-legged. They finally stop for breath, and Xena smiles.
Love is a miracle.
Xena looks at Ares, her eyes still full of the passion she feels for Gabrielle.
I never loved you.
As the words penetrate, Ares face writhes into an ugly snarl. Xena lashes out, kicking him in the gut with her boot and then releases Gabrielle. Ares reaches for the dark chakram, and Xena jumps off the altar, gently tossing Gabrielle in the opposite direction. The naked woman and the musicians scream and run off.
Gabrielle catches him in the pants with her own well-timed kick.
No, my bitch. How's that
for a kick in the ego?
Infuriated, Ares lets loose the dark chakkie at Gabrielle. Gabrielle dives for the dirt, or more accurately, the stone floor and tucks into a roll out of the way.
Xena pulls her sword and also ducks, letting the dark chakram go over her head but not trying to catch it. She attacks Ares without hesitation, and he is forced to snatch the chakram and draw his sword to defend himself.
Xena! Stop, or I’ll....
You'll what, kill me? Been tried by
better men than you, Ares. C’mon!
Ares lunges after Xena, and they begin a sword fight. Ares jumps over the altar and nearly slices Xena in half, but Xena manages to move out of the way in time.
Ares swings the sword of war right at Xena's head, and misses. The sword impacts the altar, and a thunderclap rings through the room.
The altar tips over, falling with a crash to reveal a set of steps underneath. Ares slams his sword against Xena's, and Xena backs up a step under the force.
Ares attacks again, forcing Xena back again, this time down the first of the steps.
You want to mess with me? All right,
Xena. You've got what you wanted.
I’m finally going to KICK YOUR ASS!
Ares jumps to the top step, then he leaps up and kicks out, kicking Xena down the stairs. With a laugh, Ares follows her.
Gabrielle scrambles out from where she'd hidden and goes after them, disappearing from site as the sound of sword clashes rings out, as well as a scream.
INT. ARES’ TEMPLE - UNDERGROUND - NIGHT
Xena and Ares fight. They are in a central chamber. To one side is a large opening, and inside appears to be a tomb like room that has no sarcophagus.
Xena is taking the worst of the fight. She is holding her own, but Ares is getting the better of her and she is starting to look battered. A bruise covers one side of her face.
You aren't worth my attention, Xena.
Xena ducks under a blow, then she turns and engages Ares with her sword, trading cuts with him. He swivels, putting his back to the opening, and thrusts at her, nearly catching her before she jumps back.
You're getting old. Slowing down.
Gabrielle races behind Ares into the room.
You're older than I am.
Xena suddenly leaps over Ares head and spins, then kicks him in the back. Ares just keeps himself from crashing into the wall, and picks up a chair, throwing it at Xena and hitting her in the chest.
INT. ARES’ TEMPLE - TOMB CHAMBER - SAME TIME
Gabrielle bolts inside and looks desperately around. She doesn't see what she's looking for, so she runs through the chamber, looking everywhere.
Finally she spots a ceramic case, just the right size for a chakram. She opens it, and inside the good chakram lays, gleaming in the torchlight.
Gabrielle reaches for it, then pauses, suddenly uncertain.
It takes a certain kind of
person to touch this.
I don't think I qualify anymore.
Outside, Xena lets out a cry, and Ares laughs. Gabrielle looks over her shoulder, seeing Ares holding Xena against the wall, his sword raised.
Gabrielle looks at them, then she turns and screwing her face up in anticipation, she puts her hand into the case and closes her fingers around the good chakram, lifting it out in one quick motion.
INT. ARES’ TEMPLE - UNDERGROUND - MOMENTS LATER
Xena moves her head just as Ares sword hilt clangs against the rock. Xena heaves with all her strength and throws Ares back, then she ducks under his swing and rams him with her shoulder.
Ares grabs her and throws her against the wall. She drops her sword. Before she can pick it up again, he kicks it away from her, into the tomb chamber.
Xena leaps past him, taking the flat of his blade against her shoulders as she tucks and rolls, ending up in the tomb chamber with Ares stalking after her.
Gabrielle is nowhere to be seen.
Xena grabs her sword and changes direction, surprising Ares. He jumps over her, but she twists in mid air and hits his sword with her sword as hard as she is able.
Ares sword goes flying out of his hand, and hits the opposite wall. Xena follows up her advantage, and swings at Ares, forcing him to scramble out of the way.
She keeps coming, driving him back a step at a time, relentlessly. Ares pulls out the bad chakram and beats her off with it, catching her sword on the chakram and diverting it while trying to cut Xena open with the edge.
They are both breathing hard. Ares catches Xena's sword hand and pulls it back, then thrusts the bad chakram at her throat, its edge cutting through the skin.
But his arm is not quite long enough and Xena whirls and pulls back, shuddering at the touch of the chakram she once carried.
Ares comes after her, but Xena ducks under his arm and escapes, leading him across the room before she runs up the wall and pushes off, tumbling over his head and landing near the opening to the tomb.
You're really pissing me off, Xena.
Ares cocks his hand and throws the chakram at her with great force. Xena dodges, but the chakram follows her, responding to Ares will and she tumbles and ducks around obstacles in the room until she is against the far wall and out of space to run.
She turns, and the chakram is coming right at her face. At the very last minute, she throws herself out of its way, and it hits the wall.
It breaks in half. Both halves go spinning out of the room. Xena laughs. She stands up and faces Ares. He is furious.
Doesn't pay to be an
indian giver, Ares.
I'll just go get it fixed.
Ares turns to look for his sword, then notices something on the wall over his head.
It is the Eye of Hephaestus.
Ares laughs, and points at Xena.
You thought you could trap me
with that? Xena! You're an idiot.
Where did you dig up that old thing?
You'd be surprised.
Ares looks at her, then at the Eye.
Oh, I get it. You thought you'd trigger
that with the chakram, didn'tcha?
Oo... Did I mess up Xena's plan?
Xena looks at him.
You're over there, I'm over here
and you ain’t' got no chakram,
Xena. You lose. I win.
Ares raises his hands. Lightning bolts start to form.
You know, I really dug you, Xena.
But I'm just... So... OVER YOU NOW.
Ares lets fly with two huge bolts. Xena dives out of the way.
You forgot about one thing, Ares.
Gabrielle steps into the opening.
Gabrielle lets fly with the good chakram. It strikes the Eye, and the Eye expands, emitting a fierce light.
Gabrielle catches the chakram as Xena leaps through the doorway. They fall together as the light from the Eye rushes out and turns everything to a silver so bright they cannot see.
Ares scream echoes through the tomb, as the light fades, his voice fades as well.
Xena and Gabrielle lie on the floor with their arms covering their heads, until the room returns to its torch lit dimness, and the sounds behind them vanish.
Slowly, they lift their heads and turn to look.
The tomb is sealed. The Eye guards it... to the naked eye faintly glowing with an almost unseen power.
Xena and Gabrielle sit up and look at each other. After a moment of silence, Gabrielle reaches up and wipes a bit of blood off the bridge of Xena's nose.
Xena produces a faint smile.
Gabrielle looks at the sealed tomb.
Slowly they stand up, supporting each other, and trudge even more slowly up the steps to the temple.
END OF ACT FOUR
EXT. HILLSIDE ABOVE ARES’ TEMPLE – EARLY MORNING
Xena and Gabrielle sit on some rocks, looking out over the valley where Ares’ Temple had stood. The building has returned to its decrepit state, and the people who had gathered there have dispersed, very puzzled, back to their homes.
Maybe people do need something to
believe in, Gabrielle. But not that something.
Gabrielle has the good chakram clasped loosely between her hands.
Maybe, but I think people who want
to believe in violence will always
find someone like him to lead them.
She looks out over the hill.
But we're free of him. You and I.
It feels strange.
She looks down at chakram.
Almost as strange has
having this again.
Xena also looks. She smiles, but it is a sad smile.
Better get used to it.
Gabrielle studies the chakram. Then she offers it to Xena.
Xena looks at her as though she's nuts.
Forgetting something? I can't take
that, Gabrielle. I am no pure heart.
Gabrielle keeps her hand out, just looking steadily at Xena.
She pauses, watching Xena.
Xena hesitates, then lifts her hand and closes her fingers around the chakram, wincing in reflex as her skin touches it.
Gabrielle releases her hand, and leaves the chakram with Xena. Xena stares at it. Gabrielle pats Xena's leg.
It's lousy for cutting fish.
You keep it.
Gabrielle gets up and starts walking through the grass. After a moment's reflection, Xena gets up and follows her, the chakram firmly gripped in one hand.
Xena catches up to Gabrielle and they put their arms around each other, walking off into the grassy distance together as Argo II ambles along after them.
COMING NEXT WEEK ON XENA