Xena in Time-Warp
By Richard B.Kloosterboer
Disclaimer: Xena and Gabrielle, including a couple of other characters belong to Renaissance Pictures and SUSA. All other characters are mine.
It was in the Jewish year count of 7083 that in a cluster of suburban dwellings a great experiment took place. Professor Miles Bronwyk had made a prototype time machine. The machine chooses various time zones by selecting the correct DNA paths. After generations of work, enough DNA samples had been accumulated to make accurate time travel work. Gene samples are also one of the main ingredients discovered for time travelling found by Professor Bronwyk.
Time travel was not new in this day and age, its been around for the past decade or two. The problem was accuracy, targeting specific locations of predetermined events. Politically there were still fears attached to the problem of changing the past, so tampering with the politically historical past was definitely against the Universal Law. Now people only wanted to go to the past for leisure and there was a high demand on finding out about their roots.
Angelica Zenexias occupation was to study family trees. Personally, countless generations have passed on the legends of her ancestor, the infamous Warrior Princess: Xena. With the help of her friend Professor Bronwyk, her dream of meeting at least one of her ancestors would soon become reality.
In the case of Angelica, the women in her family were always strong-willed, determined and athletically build. Every second or third generation or so, one of the daughters would be very alike to the picture on the ancient scroll, passed down through the ages. Anyone who resembled the picture would be the Safe-keeper of Xenas memory. One of her dearest wishes was to meet her ancestor. Now this was going to be a reality.
Angelica, do you have your gene sample ready?
A glass phile gets emptied in an unusual machine. The machine was saucer shaped, inside its cockpit were rows and columns of dials and gauges. Two pairs of seats were within its interior. Boxes and tightly rapped packages of supplies lined the interior extensively as if in preparation for a long trip. A screen flickers on, and a blue/green timeline appeared on a screen. The machine was analysing the genetical goo and DNA structure through various time zones. The blue line halts a couple of inches below the present timeline, which was green.
Is the generator on board?
Yes, Professor. We are ready to leave.
Final check. Make sure that the light is turned off in the hall and that there is a note for the milkman, quoting well be away for a couple of days.
Angelica joined Professor Miles Bronwyk on board of the small craft. We traced your DNA pattern to this time period. It looks like a few thousand years Before Christ. In this time period people worshipped superhuman beings, Demi-Gods mostly, and life as a whole was in constant turmoil. It seems your ancestors are Greek, at least maternally. Hm, this is odd.
What is it?
There is an unusual strand which is not common to any life form on earth, but, it is very common through your maternal lines, as far as I can ascertain.
Might this have something to do with it. Angelica hands the Professor an ancient scroll. He unrolled it and two beautiful and handsome figures were drawn upon it.
Meet my ancestors. She said.
The professor found the resemblance of Angelica and the figure in the picture remarkably true to form. Have you dated this scroll? He asked.
Yes, it comes from ancient Greece.
I think we should leave at once, this promises to be most exciting. The Professor said enthusiastically.
The machine started humming, the outside disc began spinning anti-clockwise. Everything turned black outside the machine as if in a void. A red timeline appears on the screen and it slowly but steadily moved down from green until it finally merged with the blue timeline.
The disc slowed down, colours seemed to be coming back. A light crested over a hilltop. Dawn.
Ares, God of War, was bored. People lived in peace and harmony. Boring. The warlords and tyrants are long dead and buried. All sent to the Infernal Regions by Xena and Hercules.
There must still be a vulnerable mind here, I can feel it. Theyre coming closer. From where? From the future? Intriguing.
The God of War sends an Emissary up to Earth to investigate.
But, do not interfere, yet.
Xena and Gabrielle stayed at an inn near the west coast. Gabrielle thought a sea voyage would be a good change of scenery, plus a good trail for myths, legends and stories. Xena does not really want to leave the mainland. Sailors have a tendency to get over zealous in their behaviour toward women and if she lost her temper they could well be sailing a ship without a crew.
One of the sailors, of a more solid disposition, was telling a tale of a baby he found, floating on some debris, obviously of a shipwreck. The babys size was huge, nearly the size of a grown man.
I like children and babies, he said, But this baby for all its size would have eaten its way through our provisions in no time at all.
What did you do with the baby? Gabrielle interjected.
Well, we did save the baby and fed it for a few days. All the while I tried to get the ship back to land as fast as possible. But a storm drew up. When lightning struck, the kid panicked. He did not know his own strength, because, when the lightning began he started kicking the mainmast over and rocked the ship to such an extend we had to abandon it. Only a handful of us survived the ordeal.
With that he sculled down the last of his ale and passed out in a long deserved slumber.
Gabrielle, ever eager not to let a question go unanswered, prodded the poor sailor for one more useless question, Excuse me, how many eyes did the baby have?
Roused from his sleep he answered, One, and fell back in a deep sleep.
Cyclops! What was a Cyclops baby doing all alone on the sea?
Gabrielle, its just a tall tale made up by shipwrecked sailors. Concluded Xena, Come on, lets move on.
But Xena, imagine saving a Cyclops baby and educating it to tell stories and history to a large crowd of people
So that they could get cobbled up at the first opportunity he gets. She laughs.
Now thats not fair. If everyone was educated in the proper way, we would not have to fight for our rights all the time. Everyone would be equal. Thats including the Cyclops. With a brain like that they really shouldnt have to be as stupid as they are.
At this time Angelica and the Professor were scouting a little way around the area they landed in. According to our guidance system and the overlapping map sequencer we are near a little town which is later to be named Preveza, just by the Western coastline of Greece. Now when we meet up with your ancestor we should stay out of sight. We are only here to observe and should not interfere in the politics of this culture.
Ares Emissary was listening intently and noticed something extraordinary about the woman. She was the spitting image of the accursed Warrior Princess, Xena.
Master, Xena is here, but not Xena at all! The Emissary said.
Ares replied immediately, Separate them. Bring her to me. Get rid of the other, he is of no use to me!
Angelica, stay close to me. We are under attack!
How, Professor? I dont see anything.
There is a large vortex opening in front of us. A strong energy is seeping out and surrounding us. Its astounding. The forces created here are impossible to gauge. F.F.ON!
A powerful surge leaped out of the vortex and dissipated on impact of a forcefield, which was activated just in time. Surprised by this move, a demon temporarily revealed itself, only to disappear immediately into thin air.
I can follow him through the heat he gives off. The temperatures are too high to be human.
Professor, what kind of monster is attacking us? I cannot recall any such beings in history other than in myths and legends.
If I knew what to make of this creature, Angelica, I would gladly tell you. He shouts to the demon, Excuse me, creature. Why are you attacking us?
A hissing and raspy voice answers, Give me the Xena woman and you shall go free.
I cannot do that.
Then die. Another surge of intensified energy bursts out of the vortex. The forcefield rippled, but did not let it through. Quick as they can, Angelica and the Professor ran back to the ship. The ground shuddered and a chasm appeared in front of them. Turning off their personal forcefield they jumped over and barely made it until the Professor slipped and clings on for his life to the side of the chasm. Angelica reaches over and tried to pull her companion to safety, when suddenly, the demon snatches her away with enough force to pull and throw the Professor stumbling into his craft.
Just in time, the ships own defence system turned on deflecting another powerful surge from the vortex.
Then everything is quiet.
Angelica is gone.
Ares Emissary had successfully completed its task. Or so it thinks. At least the woman lay quiet. Must have passed out. Who cares. Through a labyrinth of channels and tunnels the creature bore Angelica on its bony back through the Underworld. They arrived at the granite gates of the Infernal Regions of Hades. Cerberus, the three-headed hound-dog of Hades let them through without a yelp. Getting out poses more of a problem then getting in. Just then Angelica woke up and let out a bloodcurdling scream (which is only natural under those circumstances). Ares was waiting inside a splendid chamber.
Welcome to my humble abode. He expressed with a jeer and deadly smile. My Uncle Hades has taken a leave of absence for a couple of years. So this gives us a bit of time to improve on the place with living specimens. One gets a bit bored with all these dead shadows about. Now tell me, my dear, what is your name? The God of War asked ever so politely.
My name is Angelica, and with some natural curiosity asked, What is this place?
Insolence. The demon was about to strike her, but Angelica, knowing several forms of Martial Arts demonstrated she could thwart even the most powerful of foes.
Excellent, beamed the War God. Your fighting skills surpass that of my Warrior Princess. You are related to Xena? No, I would have met you much sooner than this.
Who are you? she asked quietly, waiting for an answer that would never come.
Ares face came alarmingly close to Angelica. She closed her eyes in fear, but now a telepathic link opened her mind to Ares.
The-future Professor time-ship search-for-ancestors DNA-link death eternal life Hell demons where-am-I when-am-I !
Angelica tried to pull away, but she was mesmerised. The alien thoughts kept on probing her mind. Then the pain in her head sub-sided. The pulling and probing had gone.
This is getting out of hand. I am not patient, but I do like a bit of excitement. Will I still have power over man in the future, like making a war or two?
Oh yes, I believe so anyway. You will have similar overtones to The Anti-Christ, who instigated a couple of wars in the early 20th Century.
Interesting. With what kind of magic?
A devastating weapon was created by the Allies called the Atom Bomb, to thwart the evil reign of terror of the Anti-Christ. She said.
Ah, a man after my own heart. The evil God beamed. I must have this weapon, Ares said excitedly, Make me one.
Shock overwhelmed Angelica, I dont know how, only the Professor knows.
My companion, Professor Bronwyk
Xena and Gabrielle had come to a scorched and gorged hilltop. While Gabrielle tethered Xenas horse, the latter scouted further on foot. A little ahead lay a large metallic disc, faintly glowing in iridescent blue. Something groaned from within. Through an opening Xena saw the form of a man moving inside it. Thinking the machine was a living monster she took out her sword and gave it an almighty whack! Which resulted in her being thrown clear some twenty odd feet.
Curious as ever Gabrielle came to have a closer look. This looks like a drawing out of The Scroll of Prophecies. An ancient scroll that revealed that someday the descendant of a warrior woman would come back through time and reap havoc on the Old World. But then again, no prophecy ever had good news. I wonder why its here. Gabrielle poked her finger on to the forcefield. She got a slight shock that made her giggle. Xena got up, shaking herself like a mad dog and made for another attempt to slay the man-eating monster. Gabrielle just barely made her stop by convincing Xena, Its a machine.
At this point of time, the forcefield was turned off and the Professor climbed out. He said something they didnt understand and using sign language of patience began rummaging through the compartment for something, finding it and turned it on. Testing testing 1,2,3
Greetings, my ladies. I am Professor Miles Bronwyk.
I am Gabrielle and this is Xena.
Pleased to meet you Im sure. I have travelled a great distance with a companion, but on arrival here we seem to have been separated by a super natural being of some sort.
Oh, that is nothing new. Everyone we meet up with always is in some spot of trouble with super natural beings. Its just a fact of life we have to li
Be quiet, Gabrielle! Xena interrupted. What does your companion look like? She continued.
Ah well, she looks a little like you. The professor pointed to Xena.
Youve got to be kidding. She spat in disgust.
Not at all. Here is a holographic picture of what Angelica looks like.
An array of colours and light moulded together to form a small image of Angelica. Xena stepped back in disbelief, whilst Gabrielle was fascinated how her hands went straight through the image. What manner of magic is this! Xena exclaimed in horror. Only Gods can perform such feats.
On the contrary, I am not a God. I do believe there is some higher energy level controlling us, pulling the strings, I suppose. But everything you see here is all of the future, so to speak.
What nonsense is this?
No nonsense at all. As you can see, my clothes are very different than yours. Mine are machine woven. Yours is made by hand.
Its all very, very interesting, Gabrielle interjected. But you said your companion went missing.
Well yes, we got attacked by a cloaked demon
Xena was sceptical. And you survived? I dont believe it!
Ah, well, you see hum I fell into my travelling machine, accidentally turning on the forcefield. The Professor explained.
Xena thought, He seems genuine. He must be a madman to talk such crazy talk with so much conviction.
She said, Can you prove that you remained unharmed under this force field?
Sure. Strike me with your sword. F.F.ON!
Xena was fast, but not fast enough. She hit with enough force to cleave a man in half. The protective jolt she received again flung her back several meters, knocking her out of breath. She recovered quick enough to roll out of the way as her sword bore into the ground beside her.
Gabrielle watched in horror as all this was taking place. Concerned for her welfare, both Gabrielle and the Professor strode over to Xena, Are you all right. They said at the same time?
Xena lay there gasping for breath. You must be a God. Only Gods are invulnerable to mortal wounds! she exclaimed in shock and surprise.
I hate to disillusion you. But I am just as mortal as you are. My shield is very effective, you know. The Professor explained.
In the meantime, Ares had decided on his plan of action. After whispering a few instructions to his emissary he turned to Angelica, I have a gift for you. He handed her a deep brown coloured amulet. Keep this save for me as long as you like. Now you may go back to the top. He forgot to mention to her, that whoever wore this particular amulet, it would be the end of their life as they know it.
Angelica found it tingled slightly to her touch. Without any kind of suspicion she put the amulet on. It transformed her character immediately and she was under full control of the evil spirit called Deinos for however long it wanted her.
It is time to recapture the world once and for all. Angelica, your mission is to capture your friend the Professor and bring him to me. My sources tell me he is not far from here in the company of some locals. Eliminate the others. Now go!
She quickly left. The amulet guided her steps. Her thoughts were confused. She tried to gain control of her actions, but the magic of the amulet subdued her relentlessly. Without any effort she climbed out of the rotting hole called Hades, straight into the arms of a large band of mercenaries.
Well, well, well! What have we here. This wench will give us a fair wage on the open market. One of the louts bemused.
Let me go if you want to live. Angelica threatened.
The thieves roared in laughter, until two lay mortally wounded. Their laughter ceased abruptly. This time the leader intervened in a more civilized manner.
Not even Xena could fight so severely. Obviously you run some errand for a God. Have you need for some mortal assistance? The leader asked carefully.
The amulet did most of her thinking as she answered. Very well. There are a few people en route. A thousand gold coins for whoever captures them. And as an afterthought she added. I want them alive. Dont harm them much.
That sounds like a good bargain. Do as she says. The leader of the clan demanded of his henchman. Then turned to Angelica, proffering his arm As for you, my lady, let us adjourn to more civilized surroundings. And began guiding her towards their campsite. Angelica paused a moment and rummaged through the clothing of her involuntary victims finding several weapons she could use. The mercenary leader thought, Even I dont devile the dead in this way. Some evil God must be in control of her. A thought which could cost him his life.
Xena, Gabrielle and the Professor discussed their plan of the best way of finding Angelica. While the Professor used electrical devices, Xena used her skills as a tracker to find clues. She quickly chose a direction and bade the others to follow her. After a few miles inland, she came to a halt. Sensing danger, she bade the others to hide. The Professor had already scanned the area, We are surrounded five ahead, four behind. Here. He gave Gabrielle and Xena a thin belt with a small capsule attached. Its a forcefield. When you say F.F.ON itll be activated. Gabrielle took it eagerly, but Xena refused. At least keep it with you, it could be useful. Xena grudgingly accepted and quickly went on her way to find their foes.
After activating both their shields the professor indicated to Gabrielle on his scanner all that was happening. They could see Xenas shape manoeuvring around the ambush and surprisingly quickly disposed of three of them quite rapidly. The last two fled towards the Professor and Gabrielles hiding place, more or less.
Seeing their fleeing comrades in trouble the remaining four quickly connected with the surviving two. They stood poised and ready to do battle with whatever fiend dispersed of their comrades so rapidly. They didnt have long to wait. A yodelling somersaulting figure appeared in their midst.
Excuse me, are you looking for me. They struck at the same time with their weapons. A gleeful cackle of laughter followed them as they were sent flying backwards through the air when their swords made contact with a forcefield.
All the surviving bandits for fear of other magic scrambled up and tried to get away. Switching off her protective forcefield she quickly intercepted one of their assailants for questioning. After a few quick jabs she instructed her prisoner, Ive just cut off the blood flowing to your brain. You have a minute to tell me who sent you.
Panicking bulging eyes swiftly made a definite decision. A woman with superhuman powers has sent us to capture you and your companions. Xena jabs the man again. You will recover shortly. Anything else I should know?
Well, she looks a lot like you and she wears a strange brown glowing amulet
What is it? Asks the Professor.
Xena replies carefully, I know the amulet this fool is talking about. I think Angelica may be possessed. She walks off to one side and stares aimlessly in the distance. Xenas thoughts were reminiscing of her malicious past.
Gabrielle, ever ready to pry in affairs none of her concern asked her politely and endlessly to go on. A long time ago, a good friend was given this same amulet by one of Ares emissarys. It had practically sucked the life force out of him and made him cruel and evil. It changed his whole personality.
Is there anything we can do to save Angelica? The Professor asked anxiously.
There might still be a small chance if we move quickly. You and Gabrielle go back to your machine. I shall take this opportunist here and take him to his camp.
With these words they solemnly parted.
Angelicas thoughts were in turmoil. I have killed people. Why am I doing this. An appalling thought crept through her brain cells. You know you had to protect yourself and me!
I dont want to do this. Leave me alone.
We are one forever. You will do my bidding now. I am in control. You cannot destroy me.
Oh yes, I can. She grabbed for the amulet. The pain that seared through her hands and body was of such an immense force she lost consciousness.
Sleep, sleep, my beauty. You and I are linked forever till death do us part. Well, your death anyway.
Emil was a foreigner to these parts. When he was a young lad he ran away from the swamps of his homeland north-west from Greece. He met up and trained with the Goths and when the Gothic army had a fatal run-in with some of their enemies, Emil quickly changed sides, only to slip away from them as well. Travelling south he came was captured and brought to Rome, to fight as a Gladiator. He fought so well and viciously that the Emperor pardoned him and made him Commander of a small garrison. Leading his men into one battle after another he found himself more or less bored with his plight. Espionage was one of his favourite offences. With a selected few, he crept out of the barracks under cover of darkness, to go on some unknown mission. Unbeknownst to Emil, a mutiny was about to take place. Certain officers, not liking to be commandeered by a foreigner, decided to capture their commander and banished him to the land of their enemies Gods. En rout to Greece, Emil managed to escape into Greece on his own and rig up his band of mercenaries to roam the countryside making a damn nuisance of themselves.
Then they met up with a dark maiden named Angelica. A history was to unfold. Emil entered the battle tent with only a minor concern. Angelica had told him that her former companion possessed a mechanical shield called a forcefield. This shield would only protect him if direct force was applied. Capturing with a net was the only way that the forcefield would turn on the protector. One of his scouts reported that Xena was on her way lugging a dead weight with her. Emil should tell Angelica of this news, but was very reluctant. Xena is not a woman to get tangled with.
He found the dark maiden asleep on a bed. The brown amulet was glistening on her chest. He reached out for it, but then changed his mind and quietly left the tent. [Imagine an extreme close-up of Angelicas face as her eyes popped open.]
Tis be good fortune, my brothers. The dark maiden be asleep. We can just creep out of here while the going is good. Ill not let you risk any of your necks just to
Emils eyes went blank with death. His body toppled forward as his head remained floating in mid-air. The sleek body of a woman stood about a foot or so behind the suspended head, an orange flash could be seen retracting back into a brown colored amulet. Anyone thinking of leaving, will go through me first. She rasped.
My lady, one the curs stumbled forward onto his knees. Xena is on her way. No one survives against her fighting skills
Very well, let us prepare a proper welcome. She said.
Gabrielle was relating another of her wild knowledge of myths and legends to the eagerly listening Professor Bronwyk. Now this ancient scroll I found, had the exact description of your machine. It went a bit like this: A flying discus glowing like the sun came from the heavens and bore down on mortal men, dispersing them to Hades for sanctuary. In its Cyclops eye one could see its victims trying escape.
Like a spider with its eight eyes, other vulgar visions could be seen within the discus mouth. Woe to all who will perish under this accursed monster.
That doesnt sound like my time machine at all. Interjected the Professor.
Oh, the premonitions never had any good news, and it also depends on ones point of view. Gabrielle continued endlessly. Actually this is the only scroll I read that comes even close to the description of your time machine, for instance, it is a discus and I gather that big round window is its eye. Not to mention that opening on the side would be its mouth. A monster if ever I saw one. They both laughed at the thought.
I think weve arrived. The Professor fumbled for a few seconds with a small device. They entered the mouth ahem doorway of the machine. Come on, Gabrielle, you can sit there, he indicated a small seat well away from anything breakable. I just have to adjust a few settings and were away. The machine began hovering. The Professor mumbled something incomprehensible. Eureka, I found it. He pulled out an age old joystick from a 20th Century computer game and plugged it into a port on the terminal. A screen flickered on: CALLIBRATION REQUIRED!
The Professor followed the instructions on the screen and finally positioned himself in a more comfortable position and pushed the joystick forward. Now we are on the move.
Gabrielle was astonished at how silently and quickly the vehicle moved over the landscape. On a navigation screen she could see a blue dot moving smoothly over certain contours coinciding with the relative movement outside. Okay, we are at the spot where the villains ambushed us.
We are? Gabrielle asked astonished. That was so fast.
Yes, and it will take no time at all to catch up with Xena. But I think it would be best if we remain a little behind, for strategic purposes.
They remained on a virtual straight-line course, until they came to a little clearing. This is strange, there is a tied up body in the bushes over there. Aha, your friend Xena is up a tree. Lets surprise her.
The machine elevated straight up and hovered a few feet away from the flabbergasted Warrior Princess who nearly fell off her perch. Hailing frequencies opened up, Greetings, Xena. Have you need for some assistance?
Get out of the way, do you want the whole world to see where we are? Xena had lost her temper again.
Oh sorry. They reunited on solid ground.
Whats wrong with your prisoner? Asked Gabrielle.
He fainted when he saw a glowing monster coming over the horizon in this direction. By the way, how did you get this thing to move? There are no wheels. This is very puzzling. Said Xena.
It is all part of modern technology. Replied the Professor. But let us be on our way. Time is running against us when we delay finding Angelica.
Our threesome arrived on the outskirts of the mercenary camp. Having tied up their hostage in the bushes for his own safety, they made their way cautiously around the camp. Xena had remained on horseback, whilst the Professor and Gabrielle travelled in the TM. The Professor scanned the area. Im very puzzled about this. I cant pick up any life forms at all.
Does your friend share your knowledge of the future? Xena asked quietly.
Yes. Something clicked in the Professors mind when he continued, And it is just an easy step for her to change her forcefield into a cloaking device.
Xenas intuition assumed this new information rapidly as she exploded, She has a forcefield like yours and you didnt tell me about that?
Actually its not a forcefield anymore, therefore she is still vulnerable. But you see, a cloaking device covers a large area. There are a few advantages; we cant see them, but they cant see us either. The Professor explained quickly.
Oh great, my favourite game with the dark forces hide and seek. Xena bemused sarcastically.
Gabrielle, stay with the Professor. Im going to scout around this way. You sneak around the encampment that-a-way. Whatever you do, dont go inside the camp, stay on the outskirts. Oh, and dont make any noise. She instructed.
I think it would be saver if we moved inside the cloaking area The Professor interjected. Xena continued tersely, Stay on the outskirts!
Please, Gabrielle said calmly, Xena always gets a little stressed when people dont do as she says. She is a commander after all. They parted and the fun began.
The brown amulet knew Xena was close. Soon I will be with you once more, my warrior princess, and this time you will not elude me.
Ah, Angelica, your skills as a futuristic technician will be sorely missed. But your knowledge will live on through me.
My oh my, youre a feisty one. Struggling against the ropes of pain. Your soul is trapped in my will.
You cannot escape alive.
Let me go! Angelica screamed her thoughts through the cracks of pain.
Oh no, my dear, I cannot let you go. I have need of your assistance here.
Our Master needs your Professor for a grand scheme.
But I have other plans, much broader than His.
A cackle of laughter and lightning coursed through Angelicas veins, as again she fell in a hopeless slumber of despair. Deinos took control, once more the victor.
The tent entrance flapped open as one of the curs stumbled through, My Lady, a strange machine was travelling on the outskirts. A man and a girl stepped out of the machine and we captured them with the net. Also Xena is skirting around the other side of the camp.
Good, that makes it easier to capture her. Prepare to throw the other net as soon as she comes within reach.
The villain quickly left to do her bidding, but did not get very far as Xena dispatched him to another world. She slipped quickly but quietly inside the tent and let loose a hoarse whisper, That is one of the worst welcomes Ive had in ages. You really have to be more imaginative to capture me, Deinos.
Deinos turned Angelicas body around in and cried in exasperation, How But she couldnt finish her question as blackness veiled all around her, the result of a sharp blow of the hilt of a sword colliding the side of her head. As Angelica succumbed into unconsciousness, the brown amulet vibrated with sudden terror of recognition as it babbled the thoughts, She spoke my name. She knows my name. She knows who I am. Ares, help me
Xena skilfully unclasped the intricate chain of the amulet and let it slip into a leather pouch she held ready. She made to pick up the frail form of Angelica, but some outside noise made her hide herself quickly. As she peered through the cracks of the tent flap she was astounded that Gabrielle and the Professor were captured. Obviously a net had been thrown over them and therefore the forcefield would have had an adverse effect on them. The machine was nowhere in sight.
Xena also noticed an evil shadow flowing closer to the captives, and knew instantly that it was one of Ares emissaries. It pointed to the Professor only. Suddenly, both the emissary and the Professor had disappeared into thin air, leaving only Gabrielle trapped within barbaric hands.
If there is anything more frustrating for the Warrior Princess, it will be one of her friends in big trouble. Fighting other peoples battles is not one of her favourite subjects. To defend herself is easy. But to keep looking over her shoulder to look after anybody else had always been an overwhelming chore. Now she had to dispatch all of these louts to save her friend, again.
Yodelling she landed within their midst, cutting Gabrielle free from the net in one swipe of her mighty sword, and whilst swinging in looping eighths, propelled a few incoming weaponry out of harms way.
Free at last, Gabrielle picked up a nearby lance, poised to defend herself as best she can. She remembered one of Xenas many lessons, Pick up a weapon, you make yourself a target. Wise words never to be forgotten, ever.
Intrigued by this new vision, a couple of the villains soon took on the challenge, never taking into account that Xenas apprentice had been taught by the best of all warriors. Having never drawn blood, this would be Gabrielles first time, although her opponents would survive her onslaught with some minor maiming.
Xena was fighting her final foes when the enemy decided running would be their best option. If the remaining mercenaries survive, maybe they should get a real job, like joining the army. Much saver than fighting mad women.
To their surprise Gabrielle tended the wounds of her enemies that she inflicted on them whilst defending herself. This form of compassion was very bewildering to these men of violence.
Meanwhile, Xena had satisfied herself that everything was save and sound. She made her way through the garbage to Angelicas tent. Upon entering she found that Angelica had regained consciousness. Exotic eyes looked questioningly at a bewildering familiar face.
Dont be afraid, you are safe now. I took away the amulet. Xena explained.
A hand shot up to where the amulet had hung. Relief and happiness filled the sombre face that looked oh so familiar to her own.
Thank you for saving me from that thing Xena.
Deinos wont harm you anymore, Angelica. Although some scars may have occurred. Did the stone make you kill anyone?
Yes. She whispered hoarsely.
Who were they?
All three were mercenaries who, in the long run became my private little army. Angelica answered reluctantly.
Oh well, at least no innocents died, but the vileness will still course through your veins for some time. Sometimes you will not be able to decide right from wrong. Xena tried to explain.
So that is why Im so confused if I should trust you or not?
Yes, but even trust is a two-edged sword.
The Professor was amazed at the skilfulness of his foe. He did not realise that they had been transported through time and space into another dimension. This dimension is between Heaven and Earth. Some would term it Hell, but it is also known in the form of Infernal Regions of Hades. Its Godlike supervisors, Hades and Helen, were away for a well-deserved change of scenery. Their nephew Ares is looking after the place, mainly for curfew reasons, as he of all the Gods is a warmonger and troublemaker. Trapped in this rotting hole, Ares only had his wit and intuition to keep him company. Whilst his ears had to endure moans, groans, screams and woes from all the deceased roaming aimlessly around. All of these mortally born humans died through Ares warmongering. And as they do right now, so shall he suffer the consequences.
Professor Bronwyk was fully conscious of all happenings. He deduced that the living dead had some form of power of transportation, travelling with superhuman ability at tremendous speed through unfathomable passages and dimensions. His forcefield was of virtually no use as no direct force was applied towards him. The creature just simply held him in place, pain had no effect on it. It had learned well from their first encounter.
They swiftly entered Ares main chamber. Having been relinquished from the subtle grasp of the thing, Professor Bronwyk let go a silent gasp. Overwhelmed at the sight of his new surroundings he could not help but be impressed at the sight.
Torches hung suspended in cradles from every wall, lush carpets hung from wall to ceiling. Two thrones stood ten paces from where he was deposited. Ares sat on one of the thrones, studying the Professor intently. And the Professor was looking over the Demi-God as well.
Professor Miles Bronwyk, I presume. The God spoke. The Professor gave a quick nod, but said nothing. Well, at least youre more polite than that wench that has eluded my grasp. Very well, let us get straight to the point. I have need of a special weapon that only you can make: the Atom Bomb!
The Professor stumbled back in sudden horror as he exclaimed, You dont know what youre asking of me. I am a scientist of peace, not of war. Atom bombs are the destruction of mankind. It should never have been invented in the first place. Do you really want to have the wrath of Zeus on your plate if you continue with this madness?
Oh you are a brave one. Do you really think I care about his wrath.
The sparse population, the Professor interjected, would be wiped out completely with this weapon. Not only that, but the exhaust effect will be very noticeable. It would also have an adverse affect on the space time continuum. The future would be significantly altered.
Stop! You are making it sound worse than it is. The God of War was starting to panic.
Very well, I can show you on my machine. Can your demons bring my machine over here? the Professor asked craftily.
Of course, it will be here shortly. The God of War has regained his composure, somewhat.
We must save Miles, Angelica said. Ares will never let his mind at peace, now that He wants the Atom bomb.
Xena was getting curious, What is this Atom bomb?
Its the most devastating of all weapons, in the wrong hands it could destroy the world, and it nearly did, in the future. Angelica explained.
Then we must find a way into Hades as quickly as possible. Xena concluded.
When I was still in the power of Deinos, I climbed out of a small cave hole, which reminded me of the airducts of certain large buildings back home. Its not far from here. The three women took what provisions they could carry for their journey. They quickly found the hole. Angelica led the way down the shute. As I remember it, this hole bypasses the gate to the Infernal Regions completely, so we are not going to run into Cerberus the three-headed dog of Hades.
The Professor was mulling his plan over and over in his mind, when suddenly an alien thought waltzed in. Very interesting, you plan to show me the future on your machine. This is to convince me of the evil I will unleash on the populace. No, I am not convinced. Show me, if you dare. The mind-link left the Professor so suddenly, it left him gasping for breath for a few seconds. Ares was completely unconcerned for his captives welfare. Just another weak-minded mortal, he thought.
Soon the emissaries of the War-God brought in the time machine. The Professor entered inside and commenced to prepare, with visual aid, a little surprise for the Demi-God.
Could you dim the lights please? The Professor asked politely.
And like a magician with a wave of his majestic hands about half the torches burnt half light. The Professor, on cue, let forth an array of holographic matter and colours, which formed together shapes and sizes of vast magnitudes. It even filled up the smallest crevice within the chamber. With the historical pictures the booming voice of a narrator explained all that was being shown. Footage ages long past flooded the throne room until at last it came to pass on the first nuclear tests. As the explosion took place, the Professor paused the picture and explained to the dumb stricken Demi-God, This is the explosion of an atom bomb. This is the most devastating weapon ever built by the human race.
Ares managed to ask astounded, Mortals made this?
Of course. Science and religion sky rocketed after the inhabitants of Mount Olympus retired [or expired].
The professor was not done yet, It is very simple, the atom bomb will annihilate everything. This includes Mount Olympus. You will be a God without a world. I believe Zeus will probably give you the ultimate punishment: mortality!
The God of War could no longer control himself. Screaming in terror, Ares escaped the throne room looking for a dark hole to hide in. As the professor had concluded earlier, the War-God had the thought patterns of a child, and could be manipulated as such. After all, each God had a specific duty to perform in the make up of the world and as long as the earth was not harmed in any adverse way, the Gods would do as they pleased. In time the legend of Mount Olympus inhabitants would disappear as modern sciences and religions would take over the world.
In the meantime, Professor Bronwyk mulled around the idea of escaping Hades.
It took them a lot longer than anticipated to reach an overhanging ledge into the dark regions. Once their eyes were used to the dark, they could discern shapes moving about. The noises were unbearable and depressing. If this is what death is like, no wonder that the Gods want to stay immortal. The three women were about to negotiate the ledge when a heart curdling scream met their ears. The whole foundation shook and they nearly lost their footing. Unbeknownst to them this happened to be at the same time that the Professor had related his cruel history lesson to the vile God, who had ample time to rapidly vacate his premises. The women saw a red flame dart its way rapidly through the crevices of Hell seemingly looking for the darkest spot to hide in. At this time they saw the frail form of the Professor come into view.
Amazing, hes alive. They all exclaimed in relief and pleasant surprise.
They hurried towards him and overjoyed with their reunion were completely unaware that Ares emissaries, in their masters embarrassing absence had formed a small crushing army around them, completely cutting them off from any quick escape from the domain.
Realising that they were trapped, Xena bid her companions to quickly go back into the throne room, while she attempted to keep the skeletal monsters at bay. Angelica joined Xena by her side, fighting ferociously as if seeking vengeance in some way.
Chopping away at the animated bones seemed hard work, also because the army was never ending and ruthless. Just as Xena and her clan were about to give way to the onslaught, a loud booming voice halted the deathless movement.
What is going on here? A large fat and ugly man, with a beautiful maiden at his side entered the premises. What are mortals doing here in my humble domain.
Able to breath again, Xena answered, I am Xena. My friends and I have been continually harassed and kidnapped by Ares, God of War.
That is just great, whenever we go on holiday, Ares always makes a mess of things. Doesnt he realise its too crowded in here as it is. I really should have a stern talk to that boy. Where is he now, Xena? The God Hades asked politely.
I believe he went that-a-way, pointing in an obscure direction. Looking for a dark hole, I think. Everyone giggled.
Very well, goodbye then. Helen will show you a quick way out. We dont like having live people here too long. Too depressing for both parties concerned. Oh? A powerful hand picked up a saucer shaped disc. Is this yours? Youd better take this with you. Try to leave other peoples places a little more tidy in future.
The little group quickly climbed into the machine. Xena was reluctant at first, but realising the metallic monsters forcefield was turned off, she made to follow the others. In hover mode The Professor followed the maiden God at a discreet distance. The skeletal army quickly gave way. Cerberus wont harm you, for I am with you. Helen reassured them.
At last the companions were back in the fresh air. This was the right time to get reacquainted. Xena found her horse Argot roaming untethered nearby. They travelled together for a short time and then parted their ways futuristically. Angelica and Professor Bronwyk had to go back to the future. Angelica apparently suffered no side effects after the removal of Deinos, the brown amulet. The future may not have been affected at all by the harsh removal of three villains. After a hasty farewell, they climbed into the disc and the Professor started the time machine. As before, the machine started humming, the outside disc began spinning clockwise this time. Again everything turned black outside as if in a void. A red timeline appeared on the screen and it slowly but steadily moved up from the blue until it finally merged with the green timeline. The disc stopped spinning and our companions emerged from the time machine into Professor Bronwyks laboratory.
Miles, was it a dream or did we really travel to the past?
I think we did break the time barrier. To dream the same dream with so much splendour and atrocities does not fit in with dreaming as a whole. How did you like meeting one of your ancestors?
Angelica considered her answer carefully, A sad but strong willed character. Xena has a long way to go before settling down. Obviously she will have a child in her future.
Why do you say that?
I am related to her, I am here. If she has had no children, I would not exist. If Xena dies prematurely I will cease to exist also. I think I should go back and travel with her.
That would be too dangerous. No, I wont allow it A sharp blow in the back of the neck silenced the Professor temporarily.
Im sorry Miles, but it is something I have to do. Angelica propped the unconscious Professor on the couch in the living room and locked the door leading into the lab. She quickly stored up a few provisions. Nimble fingers set the machine to new co-ordinates. The humming began and the machine started spinning anti-clockwise. Then she was gone. Travelling through time and space to the land of myths and legends. What adventures await Angelica there?
The End [see sequel: Walking On]
Xena in Time-Warp
By Richard B.Kloosterboer
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