Friend in Need of Therapy
K. Simpson's take
Disclaimers: DO NOT READ THIS PARODY if you haven't seen the "Xena" finale ("Friend in Need") or if you have low tolerance for this sort of thing. Xena, Gabrielle, Argo, and their various incarnations belong to MCA/Universal, Renaissance Pictures, and that crowd. The Big Giant Head comes from "3rd Rock from the Sun." No copyright infringement or real insult is intended -- contingent on what happens in the movie.
E-Mail: KSimpson@the-devils-workshop.com or ROCFanKat@yahoo.com
GABRIELLE (dreaming): No! Nooooo! Don't leave me!
X: Gabrielle, wake up.
G: You can't leave me here! You've got to take me with you!
X empties a waterskin over G's head. G wakes up sputtering; then she sees X standing there. Her mood improves remarkably.
G: Oh, thank the gods. You're not dead!
X: Not lately. Are you all right?
G: I am now. (Rubs her eyes) Zeus, I was having the worst dream. You died. Again. I know you do that all the time, but this time...I don't know, it just was so real.
X (fidgeting): Well. Yes. About that. It was real -- sort of. Remember the dreamscape?
G: What about it?
X: Well, now you're doing the bard thing again, I wanted to help you out. I thought you could use something tragic and awful to write about. Awful on purpose, anyway. I know that "Soul Possession" scroll was supposed to be a comedy, but...
G (getting annoyed): But?
X: Never mind. I just thought you might have better luck with another tragedy. Bards do write those, don't they?
G: All by themselves. What exactly did you do, Xena?
X: Got in your dreamscape and messed around a little bit.
G: A little bit?
X: Uh-huh. Did you like the special effects?
G doesn't answer. She's busy putting the pieces together.
G gets up, taking the blanket with her. Then she whacks X with it as hard as she can.
X: Hey! What's the matter? I was just trying to give you some range.
G: I'll give you range, Xena. (Whacks her again) Oh, boy, will I give you...
X: OK, OK, I'm sorry about the dream. Knock it off.
G: "Sorry" doesn't cut it. You died on me. (Whacks her again) You let some little weasel with a cheesy mustache chop your head off, and you stayed dead. On purpose. (Whacks her again) On purpose, Xena! I could just kill you!
X abandons the field and ducks behind Argo II...who bites her.
G: See? She hates you for it too.
X: You don't really hate me, do you, Gab? (No answer) Pumpkin?
G dives under the horse and tackles X, who didn't see that one coming. She goes down hard with a very annoyed bard pinning her down.
X: Well, hello, gorgeous.
G: Don't take this the wrong way -- this is just business. It's as close as you're getting. You're sleeping on the couch for the next six months.
X: We don't have a couch.
G: Don't get literal with me. And don't change the subject. This is going to cost you big, Warrior Princess. (Grabs X's head) I want you to say it.
X: Say what?
G: What you said in the dream. Say it again. Make me believe it.
G puts the pinch on her.
G: Say it!
X: All right, all right, already. "If I have just thirty seconds to live, this is how I want to live them. Looking into your eyes." (Choking) Both of 'em. They're green, right?
G: Again. Without the commentary.
X starts to repeat it, then frowns and takes the pinch off herself.
X (wiping her nose): Shoulda never put that part in the dream.
G: You have all the romance of an eel. I take back that "you're my whole life" stuff.
X: Oh, c'mon, you're overreacting. Besides, it was your dream too. You helped. (Smirks) I really liked that water thing, myself. (Smirks again) Thirsty?
G: Never again as long as I live.
X: Hey, it was your idea in the first place.
G: Now who's dreaming?
X's only hope is to distract G. Desperate to end this conversation, she gives herself the pinch.
X: Dammit! Look what I did practically by accident! Quick -- we've got to do another hurt/comfort scene!
G: Won't work, Xena.
Grumbling, X takes the pinch off. Then G chokes her for real.
G: I came in second again! Why am I always coming in second? Why are you always going around dying for everybody else?
With great effort, X pries G off.
X: You know perfectly well that I have to redeem my Dark Side. Those forty thousand people...
G chokes her again.
G: I mean the bimbo! The latest bimbo, I mean.
X: She was a long time before I met you.
G: We keep running into your long-time-agos all over the world. I lost count ages ago. Is there anyone on the whole planet you haven't slept with? No, wait -- let's include livestock, too, just to cover all the possibilities.
G: I'm not done. You bonk some pint-size harlot, you whack her head off, and then you throw yourself a big fat grief festival. (Tightens her grip on X's windpipe) You never grieve like that for me, Xena. You never, ever set people on fire when I die.
G: I'm still not done. After you died -- again -- I had to fight some pissant in a bathrobe for your head. (Beat) Don't even think about making a subtext joke.
G: Been there, done that, Xena. Then I had to climb a mountain and find some birdbath with a doofy name...
X: The Fountain of Strength. But...
G: ...and fight the pissant again, and haul your ashes out of a bird's nest, and...
X: You left out the good part.
G (puzzled): The good part?
X: The kiss.
G: It wasn't a kiss; it was an exchange of water.
X: You think? Well, then, you can exchange water with me any time, cutiepie.
G: Quit interrupting. And after I did all that, you wouldn't let me bring you back to life. You made me do all those stunts, and then you changed your mind?
X: I explained that part.
G: Not to my satisfaction. (Sniffles) You left me, Xena. You left me. How could you do that?
G starts crying. It finally dawns on X that she's in real trouble.
G (weeping): How can you keep doing it? You tell me you love me, you say I'm your soulmate, you say you'll always love me, but you leave me on top of some damn mountain with nothing but ashes. How could you?
X: I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. Please don't cry. It was a terrible, terrible thing to do, and I promise I won't do it in real life. Even in death, Gabrielle, I will never leave you...again.
G: I don't believe you.
X: I'm really sorry. Really. Can't we just exchange water and make up?
G (wiping her eyes): Never in hell. I'm still mad. You're in for another Season 5 with me. We're strictly business partners, and Joxer won't go away.
X (horrified): You wouldn't do that to me again. That was just so awful the first time.
G: Watch me!
G gets up and goes back over to the campfire. X follows -- dodging Argo II, who tries to bite her again -- and starts giving G a backrub. G reaches for her sais but lets her hand drop before she gets hold of them.
G (closing her eyes involuntarily): That won't work either.
X: We'll see....So you didn't even like the special effects? They cost a bucket of dinars.
G: The Big Giant Head was lame, Xena. It looked...ahhh.
X: That's right, Gabrielle. Just relax.
G: Fine. But it still won't work.
G: Absolutely n...ahhhhhhhh.
X: Give it time. (Sighs) Maybe you're right about the head. It's not called the Big Giant Head, though. It's the Tapert. The Eater-of-Souls.
G (starting to bliss out): Whatever.
X: It made me do it, Gabrielle. You know I would never hurt you. No one should ever hurt you.
G's eyes snap open, and she reaches for her sais again. This time, she grabs them.
G: You dragged me behind your horse. You tried to throw me off a cliff. You actually killed me once! You...
X: I told you, the Tapert made me do it.
G (poking X with a sai): You have no free will all of a sudden? You let the Big Giant Head write your script? Are you married to this thing or something?
X: I love you, Gabrielle.
G: Stop saying that. You obviously don't mean it.
X: I do so.
X starts to close in; G holds her off with the sais.
G: Not one more step.
X (still advancing): We'll go see Mnemosyne again in the morning, sweetheart. All right? We'll have her wipe that silly dream right out of your databank. Season 5, too. What do you say?
G: I don't know. Let me think about it. (Thinks) Say the mushy thing again.
X: The part where I call you "old friend"?
G (pokes her again): Couch, Xena. Three months, and not a second sooner.
X: Two months, you say?
G: At least thirty days.
X takes the sais away, pulls G into her arms, and gazes deep into her eyes. She turns the emergency charm up to Stun.
X: If I have just thirty seconds to live, this is how I want to live them. Looking into your eyes.
G (breathless): Really?
X: You damn betcha, really.
G: I'm still mad at you.
X: So punish me. I'm not going anywhere. Promise.
G (wavering): What if we run into the Tapert again?
X: Let him eat fishsticks.
X&G walk off into the sunset together. It's already night, of course, but logic never stopped anyone in the Xenaverse. Everyone lives happily ever after except Joxer.
06.28.01, K. Simpson
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