|Episode Guide||Teaser||Act 1||Act 2||Act 3||Act 4|
EXT. LOOS’ HOUSE - LATE AFTERNOON
Xena, Gabrielle and Loos stop outside of a gone-to-seed old shack on the outskirts of Pompeii.
Someone lives here?
Gabrielle gazes at the crumbling foundation and the half stove-in roof and flicks a glance to Xena.
This place doesn’t look
very livable. Or safe.
The God of Love provides
for all his people.
I’d talk to management
about getting an upgrade.
Loos gives her a blank look. Gabrielle sighs.
Giving a tiny shrug, Loos turns away, ducks under a crumbling archway, and steps inside the dark, dank hut.
Please, come inside. I’ll show
you where you can store your
gear once you’ve collected it.
Gabrielle looks at Xena, wide-eyed. Xena rolls her own eyes.
After a moment, Loos steps back outside and straightens, wiping soot and cobwebs from his fruit-spattered toga. Gabrielle’s lip curls and she backs unobtrusively away.
We appreciate your offer, but
we already have a place to stay.
Loos stares at them both.
So we’ll… uh… be seeing
you around, ok? Try to
stay out of trouble.
Wait! Wait! You can’t….
You can’t seriously be
thinking of staying among
those… those… infidels!
Loos, they’re not infidels.
They’re people who live their
lives differently than you do.
There’s no right or wrong
about it. It simply is.
Loos’ jaw drops.
I cannot believe I’m hearing
such words falling from the
lips of the Mother of the
Messenger. It’s… heresy!
No, it’s the truth. My truth.
Loos, I may not agree
with your beliefs....
But I respect them.
I ask the same from you.
She inclines her head to him.
It was good seeing you again.
Try to stay out of the way
of the Pompeians, ok?
The two make quickly their escape, leaving Loos to splutter by his broken down doorway.
He’s gonna be trouble.
EXT. AMPHITHEATER - EVENING
A young boy leads Xena and Gabrielle down the steps of the rapidly filling amphitheater. Gabrielle, her face glowing, is looking all around her as they descend toward the stage.
I can’t believe it. I just… gods…
we’re actually going to see a play
in the amphitheater of Pompeii!
That’s what it looks like, yes.
Sorry. I’m running on,
S’all right. I like it when
Oh, believe me, I am
very definitely happy.
They stop a few rows up from the stage, and Xena steps aside, allowing Gabrielle to precede her into the row. Thanking the young usher, they soon find their seats, center-stage. Xena settles in.
Not bad, huh?
Not bad?! Xena, these are
the best seats in the house!
She rests her head on Xena’s shoulder.
Thank you so much for getting
these tickets, and for coming to
see the play with me. I’m sure
you probably have other things
you’d like to be doing right now.
Xena pretends to think about it.
Nope. Right here, right
now, with you. There isn’t
any place I’d rather be.
Gabrielle ducks her head, then turns and kisses Xena’s shoulder. Reaching out, Xena slips an arm around her and snuggles her as close as the seats allow.
No problem. Look,
they’re about to start.
EXT. STAGE - NIGHT
A young man clad in rich robes strides out onto the stage and moves to the left, where he leans forward as if looking through a window.
At the edge of stage left, a man and woman stand up against the wall, obviously engaged in a sexual act.
The young man sighs.
Oh, Penellopa, what riches I would
give for the merest taste of your
sweet lips. An entire Kingdom,
were it mine to give, I would
lay down at your feet.
As Saccus continues to gaze adoringly out the window, another actor enters; a middle aged, exceedingly well-dressed man.
See here, young man! The night
grows late! What are you doing
staring out that window?
Saccus straightens and fakes a stretch and yawn.
It is nothing, Father. I was merely
wishing the moon goodnight.
You and your dreaming ways.
You’ll never make a merchant if
you continue on so. Now quick!
To bed. The morrow comes quickly,
and I will return from Pompeii
with your new virgin bride.
MAN IN CROWD
There are no virgins
The audience hoots and cheers.
Yes, Father. As you wish.
The young man slips into his bed. The father leaves, satisfied.
As soon as the ‘room’ is empty, Saccus arises and returns to the window. The woman now stands alone, straightening her garments and pocketing the coins she’s received for her night’s labors. Sensing eyes upon her, she turns and smiles at the young man staring at her boldly from the nearby window. As his eyes stay rapt upon her, she slowly slips down the shoulder of her toga, giving him a view of the merchandise.
From stage right, another man rushes on, a large square of linen in his hands. Yelling incoherently, he rushes to cover the young actress, wrapping the square several times around her until she is as bound as a mummy.
The audience roars with laughter, thinking this is part of the play. Only Xena and Gabrielle, frozen in their seats, know differently.
Grabbing the woman, Loos turns and faces the stage.
The God of Love will punish you
for your lewd acts here tonight!
Heed my words! His wrath is
coming! Repent your sins!
Several large men rush onto the stage and tackle the unfortunate preacher and the even more unfortunate actress. The crowd voices its displeasure and starts to pelt the stage with more overripe fruit.
Gabrielle makes as if to rise, only to be pulled down by Xena.
Relax. It’ll be all right.
They won’t hurt him.
It’ll be all right.
Sure enough, the angry men are rather gentle with the raving preacher, pulling him up from the ground and leading him, protesting, from the stage.
At last, Loos is ushered off, the actress is pulled to her feet and unwrapped, and the stage is cleared of all debris.
The play continues.
EXT. AMPHITHEATER - NIGHT
As the actors take their bows, Gabrielle dabs the tears from her cheeks with a bit of cloth from her bag. Her hands are red from clapping and her eyes are red from crying. When the applause dies down, Gabrielle turns to Xena. She smirks, then shakes her companion’s shoulder.
Xena. Xena, wake up!
Wha--? I wasn’t asleep.
Just checking your
eyelids for holes, right?
Xena gives her a pointed look. Gabrielle grins.
The torture’s over.
We can leave now.
Stretching cramped muscles, Xena comes to her feet and helps her partner up.
So, how’d you enjoy it?
Oh, it was wonderful!
So sad, so romantic!
It was just… amazing.
Good. Glad you enjoyed it.
I did. So, where to now?
Oh, I thought we might take
up the producer’s invite
to the after-play party.
Xena shrugs, hiding a smirk.
Some of the actors were upset
that they didn’t get to see you
at the Café last night, so the
producer asked for the honor of
your company after the play tonight.
By the gods….
If you’re interested, of course.
Interested?!? Come on!
What are we waiting for?!?
Chuckling, Xena leads an excited and happy Gabrielle from the amphitheater.
INT. BARD ROCK CAFÉ - NIGHT
The cast party has, like many Pompeian parties before it, denigrated into somewhat of an orgy, with groups of people, in various stages of undress, doing what comes naturally.
Standing in the center of the room, oblivious to the activities around them, are Xena and Gabrielle, pressed closely together and swaying to the sensuous beat of the drums. They are lost in the music, and each other.
Gabrielle pulls away slightly and looks up at Xena, her eyes shining.
For making this one of the
most magical nights of my life.
Gifting her with a wonderful smile, Xena spins Gabrielle, then pulls her back in close, then bends her head to purr in Gabrielle’s ear.
They then share a long, slow kiss that dissolves naturally as they go back to their dance.
Xena stiffens for a moment, then relaxes against Gabrielle, resigned, as she hears a commotion to the rear.
Loos comes charging in, all but dragging two large men who are guarding the door against intrusions such as his.
Repent, you minions of Lucifer!
Repent! The God of Love will
bring down retribution on your
heads! A great burning is coming!
You will swim in a lake of fire
for all eternity! Repent!!
Roundly ignored, he stops abruptly as he spies Xena and Gabrielle standing in the center of the room. He rushes over to them.
What are you doing here?!?
What does it look like?
His face softens into a smile.
Offering one another sisterly
comfort as a bastion against
the abominations surrounding
you. You are true children of Eli.
Gabrielle gapes at him, astounded.
Come on, you. Out you go.
Xena, Gabrielle, please come
with me! You must not be exposed
to any more of this depravity!
Loos, we’re fine. Just go, ok?
Repent!! All of you!!
I’ll not warn you again!!
Thank the gods for that!!
Still yelling, Loos is led from the café.
Xena smiles down at Gabrielle.
Shall we take this…
conversation… to a more
private location? Sister?
Xena, if my sister ever looked
at me the way you’re looking at
me right now, I’d have to kill her.
If she ever looked at you
this way, I think I’d kill
her first. C’mon.
With a happy grin, Gabrielle allows herself to be led from the party.
END OF ACT THREE