Disclaimers: Some of the characters within this story are, of course, the property of MCA/Universal. As those of you reading this story are fans of a certain Warrior and her Bard, I really don't think I need to spell out who they are. They have, however been unashamedly borrowed and utilised for my own nefarious purposes. It furthermore goes without saying that all other
characters in this story are figments of my devious little mind, and their resemblance to any real person, dead or alive, is pure circumstance. This work is all mine. No one other than me may alter, repost or reproduce this piece of work without my expressed permission. If however, MCA/Universal like this story, I would be open to offers, monetary of course, to have this transcribed for our illustrious Warrior and Bard to portray in our living rooms.
Subtext: This story is based on the premise that these two women love each other. If this offends you, find something else to read.
Violence: Well, this IS a Xena story. However, I don't do graphic.
Copyright February 1999 Sian McEwen
Long Ago and Far Away: A Time Travel Romance
"So, what are we going to do next?" Briana asked Samara.
"Go find a taverna and have some dinner," replied Samara with a grin.
"No, I mean tomorrow!" laughed Briana.
It was a month since Briana and Samara had arrived in Athens, and they had spent part of it sightseeing in Athens, and then in touring around the local countryside. Samara went back into their room and brought out a bottle of wine and some glasses. She poured some for Briana, who gave it an amused glance. Samara looked at her. Briana turned her grin to Samara.
"I think that wine is a particularly nasty thing to do to grapes."
"You'll probably get to like it one day."
"I'm really beginning to think that I'll stick to grapes. Now what about tomorrow?"
"Well..." replied Samara, I'm just about done with Athens. What I'd really like to do is to fly up to Thessaloniki and then hire a car, and do some touring." She looked expectantly at Briana.
"There are supposed to be some nice lakes up there, and a great coastline," Samara said.
"Sounds fine then... now, what was that about dinner?"
Samara laughed. In the month that she had known Briana, one definite thing she had learned was that Briana liked food. In fact she liked it nearly as much as she liked talking.
"Dinner, then," said Samara, and walked back into their room to get a jersey.
"Grab a jacket or something, Briana, we might go for a walk afterwards."
Samara went back out onto the balcony, and stood staring at the Acropolis.
Originally on arriving in Athens, they had gotten separate rooms, but after the first week, when they had just spent all their time together, they had realised that they were better off sharing a room. No point in paying for two single rooms when the only thing they were doing was sleeping in them. So they had swopped them for a twin room with a balcony.
Much to her chagrin, Samara had learnt that first week that she had no need for a single room for other reasons. Strong appetites had sent her looking for a partner, but much to her frustration, she couldn't find anyone she wanted. She, the connoisseur of men and women, had not been able to find anyone who took her fancy. No one petite enough, with quite the right colour hair... or eyes. Damn it all, ever since she had met Briana, no one else even remotely came close. One of these ancient Greek gods was obviously having a great laugh at her expense. Chastity was an unlikely disease for her to catch, and yet now she seemed fated to nothing else. All because she was lusting after her sweet, young, innocent, virginal friend. And yet it was exciting. Not only the thrill of the chase, but the uncertainty of it's success. But more than that, she was content because for the first time in her adult life, she had a real friend. Briana wasn't there in Greece with her for the money or the sex, and she didn't even know that Samara was a well known model, she was there simply because she liked Samara. Briana wanted adventures. Samara was planning a seduction.
"Dime for them." Briana came back out and stood beside Samara.
"Dime for them. Your thoughts. Inflation..."
Samara swallowed hard so that she wouldn't blush. "They're not even worth the traditional penny."
Briana smiled at her, and looked out at the view. "It's amazing."
Samara looked at Briana and smiled. "It sure is."
Briana hadn't noticed Samara looking at her. "It's beautiful, isn't it?"
"Wonderful." She was still looking at Briana.
Briana turned to look at Samara. "Are we talking about the same thing here?"
"Sure we are," drawled Samara with that same smile.
"The scenery." Briana tried again.
"That's right, the scenery..." Belatedly, Samara looked out at the view.
Suddenly this conversation had become super charged, Briana thought. She felt like she had been dropped into the middle of a football game, and she didn't know which side she was on.
Samara broke the spell. "Come on then Briana, let's go eat".
"Ready when you are."
Samara smiled as she locked the door behind her. Love - One to her. Maybe this was going to be fun after all...
At the taverna they both sat down to platefuls of moussaka.
"So is the idea of heading off to Thessaloniki tomorrow ok with you?" Samara asked.
"Yeah...but tell me more about it... and do we have to fly? Wouldn't it be cheaper to go by ship?"
"Normally, yes, but the guide book says it is cheap to fly in Greece, and that it takes a long time to get there by ship," Samara replied. Briana nodded.
"Thessaloniki is in a lovely less touristy part of Greece. Apparently the coastlines are beautiful to drive around, and there are some nice lakes and
interesting towns and villages. Mount Athos, which is the Monastic mountain is up there too, although women are not allowed there. How does that sound?"
Briana smiled. "That sounds wonderful, it will be nice to get out of Athens for a while. So, we will tour around there a while, then come back down and see the islands?"
"That sounds good to me," Samara said.
After dinner, they went for a walk, looking at some of their favourite places in Athens.
"I love the way the Acropolis looks in the sunset," Briana remarked to Samara.
She looked thoughtful. "I wonder what life must have been like for the people who lived back then. It's certainly hard to believe that they built this magnificent temple so long ago, and that it's still standing today." She looked at Samara. "Thank you."
"Thank you for what?" replied Samara.
"For putting that ad in the paper, and for being the reason for my being here. It's been so nice. I needed to get away from home so badly, to start to live my own life."
"It would have happened one day," Samara said.
"Oh, yes, but all of this, and meeting you.... this last month has been wonderful."
Samara's heart flopped, but Briana kept on talking.
"I'm so glad to have made such a good friend."
Samara smiled. "Me too." Feeling uncomfortable with the subject, she then turned and looked again at the Acropolis. "Look, the sky's changed colour again. Why don't we go back to the hotel and watch the sun go down from the balcony?"
Briana couldn't help smiling at the change of subject. Samara, she had learned, avoided her feelings like the plague.
"Sure, why not. But just don't try and give me any more of that awful wine."
Samara relaxed at the change of subject. "Why not? I swear you'll grow to like it."
Briana laughed. "With a challenge like that, I'll have to keep trying."
"Yeah, you never know what you might like if you give it a try."
Briana had the strangest feeling that suddenly they were no longer talking about wine. Flustered, she said nothing. Samara quietly congratulated herself. That made it Love - Two. This night was turning out to be very productive......
Later that night, Briana lay in bed watching Samara sleep. It was still hard to believe the way her life had changed since meeting Samara. Her parents were certainly unimpressed, but from the other side of the world they could do nothing. Which reminded her, she had better write tomorrow and let them know she was moving on.
It was strange, but after only a month, she could not imagine her life without Samara in it. Briana reflected on how lucky she was to have met such a good friend. It was like a meeting of souls. And ever since they had come to Greece, Briana had felt alive in a way she never had before. Consciously, she put it down to new experiences, but her subconscious was giving her a different message... that it was being around Samara that was making her feel so good.
"Can't you sleep?" Briana jumped.
"Sorry, didn't mean to scare you. Can't you sleep?" Samara asked.
"How do you do that?" Briana demanded.
"Know that I'm not asleep? It's like you're tuned into me or something."
"You're making funny noises."
"I am not," Briana retorted, outraged.
"You are. Besides, I could feel you watching me. It's nice."
Briana blushed. Samara got out of her bed and went over to Briana's. She sat down, and touched Briana's arm. Briana shivered. Samara started massaging Briana's neck and shoulders.
"Mmmm, that feels good," she told Samara. Samara smiled.
"I thought it might. What were you thinking about?"
"Oh, about how much my life has changed since I met you, and how happy I am that I came to Greece."
"I'm glad you came too," Samara told her. She loved the feeling of Briana's body under her hands.
Briana started to relax. Samara got up to go back to her own bed.
"Oh, don't stop, please," Briana begged her. Samara wished she hadn't started. Touching Briana was pure torture, because she wanted to do more than just touch her.
"Sit up then," Samara suggested.
"I'll show you."
Briana sat up, and Samara moved so she was sitting behind her. In front of them was a mirror. Now they could see each other's faces, and Samara could see how Briana was reacting. She needed to take it slow... after all there was plenty of time, and she didn't want to scare Briana. "There, now I can see you." Briana looked at the ice blue eyes that were staring at her reflection in the mirror. They looked so... sensuous. Feeling suprised and unsure, Briana shut her eyes. "Oh that just feels so good."
Within ten minutes, Samara had found out just how good... Briana had fallen asleep. Reluctantly, she tried to ease herself away from Briana to get back into her own bed, but Briana just snuggled closer to her, and wouldn't let her move away. As nice as it was, Samara realised that she did not want Briana waking up with her in the bed unless it was prearranged, unless she had been asked to sleep there. Finally disentangling herself, Samara looked at her sleeping friend, and bent over to kiss her. Sleep was a long time coming for her that night.
The Morning After The Night Before
Briana awoke the next morning to find that Samara had already bought their breakfast of coffee and rolls. This had become their habit, Samara being an early riser, and Briana needing a morning cup of coffee to wake up properly.
"Morning sleepyhead," said Samara. "Thessaloniki today."
"Do you have to sound so cheerful in the morning?" groaned Briana.
"Why not? The sun is shining, it's a beautiful day... "
"It's Greece. The sun is usually shining," interrupted Briana.
Samara smiled. "Here's your coffee."
"Thank you..." Briana felt strange. It felt like something had changed in her relationship with Samara overnight, but she wasn't sure what. And Samara had never actually brought her coffee in bed before, usually Briana got up and had it out on the balcony with Samara. She felt special, loved.
Samara was sitting on the chair by the bed with her coffee. "We might as well go straight to the airport as soon as you are ready."
"Samara, why did you bring me coffee in bed?" asked Briana.
"Anything to get you moving," Samara retorted, unhelpfully.
Briana decided to go with the flow. "I could get used to it," she laughed.
Samara laughed too. "I'll have to remember that."
Arriving at the airport, Samara left Briana at the bookshop while she went and bought their tickets. Briana wanted an English language magazine to browse at while they were waiting for their plane. Glancing over the range of magazines available, her eyes were drawn towards one with a woman with long dark hair on the cover. It looked like Samara. She picked it up to have a better look... it was Samara. She hurriedly paid for the magazine and went outside to start reading it.
Samara bought their tickets, and came back to the bookshop to find Briana. She saw her sitting on a seat outside it, reading a magazine.
"Oh, good, you found something to read. The plane doesn't leave for another hour or so." Samara glanced at the magazine Briana was reading and shuddered. It had come out about six months ago, but obviously had taken it's time arriving in Greece.
"Why didn't you tell me? I thought we were friends! You said you were a model, but according to this, you're not just a model, but one of the most successful models in the world."
"What a fool I am! Why on earth did you place that ad? Why would you want to go on holiday with someone like me?"
"Why didn't you go on holiday with him...." and she thrust the magazine under Samara's nose, showing her the tall, long blonde haired, well muscled Adonis she had been photographed with all those months ago. "I'm sure he would have been much more your type. It says in here he is your current boyfriend."
"I'm sorry. I never meant to lie to you..."
"How could I have been so stupid!"
"Briana! Will you listen to me, please! I'm sick of all this." Samara pointed to the magazine. "It's not me, not who I am, it's just an image. It's all false, no one cares, no one matters. You're only popular while you're the in thing, and then they drop you for the next person who comes along. All any of these people wanted was a good time at my expense. You're different. You got to know me for who I am, not what I can buy you... I've enjoyed being on holiday with you. I like having a friend. A real friend. You're not stupid, you're special. This is what I wanted when I placed that ad... I didn't know it at the time but I do now. I wanted someone who knew me and liked me for myself. Someone I can be just Samara with, not Samara-the-model. You care about me. You care about what I want and what I like. Briana, I'm sorry I never told you, but when you ended up on that plane after I told you not to come, and then we got on so well, it seemed I don't know... I was scared it might change our friendship."
"Is that guy really your boyfriend?"
Samara breathed a sigh of relief. "Such is the joy of media reporting. We went out for dinner. Once."
"And that explains you putting up your hair, the hat and the sunglasses whenever we go out?"
"I needed a holiday. To not be recognised, either by fans or the media. And you don't need to be noticed and splashed all over the front page as my new lover."
Briana looked at Samara and smiled. "Well, I'm still not thrilled that you didn't tell me, but I think I understand why." She hadn't registered the last part of Samara's comment.
"I'm sorry, I should have told you. Samara looked around. The area around them which had been empty was starting to fill up with people. Let's go and get some coffee while we're waiting for our plane, shall we?"
Briana looked around at the people moving to seats nearby. "That sounds good. Friends?" she asked.
"Definitely!" Samara replied.
After sitting down with their coffee, Samara asked "So how much of that article have you read?"
"Most of it. Exactly how much of it is true?"
"Not even half of it. These articles seem to have one or two facts surrounded by tons of speculation and innuendo."
Briana suddenly remembered her father's little speech when he met Samara.
"My father recognised you didn't he?"
Samara nodded. "He was worried about someone with a reputation like mine corrupting you, I think. You're lucky to have a father who loves you so much. Some of my reputation is well earned, you know. Too much money, too much drink, too much sex. I'm not exactly..."
"That's changed though, hasn't it?" Briana interrupted hesitantly. She felt that it had, but she wanted confirmation from Samara.
Samara smiled at Briana. "Well, I've still got heaps of money..."
"Hey that's our flight they're calling for boarding," said Samara. "Still sure you want to go to Thessaloniki with me, and not back home?"
"Certain," replied Briana.
Later that afternoon, they had checked into a hotel for the night, and rented a car. Then they had followed Briana's suggestion and were wandering around the market in Thessaloniki. Samara stopped to look at some leather work, and when she turned around to show something to Briana, she saw that Brie hadn't noticed her stop. She was further up the street looking at another stall. As she turned around to follow her friend, Samara noticed a stall selling jewellery. She went over to have a quick look, checking that Briana was still just up the street. Samara saw a lovely coral necklace that she decided to buy for herself. As she was giving her money to the stall keeper, she caught sight of a beautiful gold filigree ring. As she stopped to give it a closer look, the stall keeper picked it up and gave it to her to inspect.
"It's supposed to be very old," he told Samara.
"It's certainly lovely. What beautiful work has been done on it." It would make a lovely present for Briana, she thought. "I'll take the ring too, please," she told the stall keeper.
She looked to see where Briana was, and saw her still at the stall she had been looking at. After paying for her purchases, Samara slipped the ring into her bag. She would give it to Briana sometime soon. She hurried to catch up with Briana.
When Samara had stopped at the leather stall, Briana had gone up the street to look at a small jewellery stall she had noticed. Looking over the items for sale, her eyes were drawn to a beautiful carved gold ring.
"Can I have a look at that ring please?" she asked the stall keeper.
"Oh, it's beautiful," she exclaimed as he handed it to her. The pattern had been delicately carved onto the ring, making it a stunning piece of work. Samara would love it, she thought.
"I'd like to buy the ring," she told the stall keeper. Glancing around to see where Samara was, Briana saw her coming up the street. As she took her package, she noticed a coral necklace that she fell in love with.
"Oh, I'll take that too," she said. Briana dropped the ring package into her bag as Samara came up behind her.
"What are you buying?" Samara asked.
Briana payed the stall keeper, and then showed Samara her necklace. Samara laughed.
"I got one too," and she showed Briana her necklace. "Great minds think alike!"
Later on, Samara bought a ground cover and a couple of blankets.
"They'll be good to have in the car for picnics or whatever," she told Briana.
"Good idea," Briana said, and invested in a small picnic hamper.
"Let's find a supermarket and get some food to keep in the car, shall we?"
Samara suggested. "For snacks?"
"Sounds good to me," Briana laughed.
Samara laughed too. She had never been so happy as she was since meeting Briana.
That night Briana lay in bed contemplating the events of the day. Thinking about the article she had read about Samara, she suddenly realised that there was another interesting piece of information she had learned about Samara that day, and one that suddenly made her shiver all over. Samara's conquests had included men and women. That piece of information allowed her to acknowledge something she had been ignoring before. She was falling in love with Samara. If Samara had been straight, it would have just seemed impossible. Now maybe in time, Samara might fall in love with her too. Remembering the massage last night, Briana realised that Samara was obviously feeling something too. Briana hugged herself. Time would tell.
The next morning, by mutual agreement, they packed up the car and headed out of the city. They drove southwards from Thessaloniki down the coast towards the first of the three peninsulas in the area. It took a long time to get out of the city, and so when they got to the coast it was wonderful. The sea looked so inviting that as soon as they found a suitable spot, they stopped and got out to go for a swim.
They both were wearing swimsuits under their clothes, so Samara stripped off her shirt and shorts and ran into the water.
"Come on, Briana... Let's get wet," she shouted.
Samara swam out a bit further then turned onto her back. Briana was taking her time getting her clothes off, giving Samara a chance to look at Briana's body. Unlike Samara, who was wearing a bikini, Briana had on a one piece tank suit. Samara couldn't help but notice how good it looked on her, showing off her well honed abdomen and her gorgoeus legs. Seeing that Briana was almost ready to come in, Samara walked back towards her.
"Oh, Briana..." she called, and as Briana looked up, Samara's hands sent a swathe of water dierctly at Briana, soaking her.
"So, you think that's funny, do you?" Briana laughed. "Then try this..." and she ran into the water and returned the soaking.
Samara swam out deeper to escape Briana, who followed her. Noticing that Briana was busy swiming, Samara ducked under the water. Briana stopped to see where Samara was, but couldn't see her.
"Samara..." and she shrieked as she felt something grab her ankles and pull her under. Spluttering, she surfaced, and cleared her eyes of water to see Samara standing there grinning.
"That's not funny." Briana glared at Samara.
"No," replied Samara as she tried to smother her smile. She glanced at Briana, who looked like a drowned rat, and gave up. It was too funny... Samara burst out laughing. Briana couldn't help laughing too.
"I'll get you..." And she chased after Samara with revenge on her mind.
Half an hour later, they sat on the beach drying themselves off in the sun.
"We might as well have lunch here," Briana suggested to Samara.
"That sounds great," Samara replied.
As they sat eating, Samara pointed out a mountain in the distance. "That's probably Mount Olympus."
"The home of the Gods. Did you read any of the Greek Myths as a child?" Briana asked her.
"Yes, and I saw 'Clash of the Titans' three times...."
"Oh, me too. I loved that movie. And the James Bond one that came out at the same time. What was it called... it was set in Greece too."
"Oh, I know, with Roger Moore? 'For Your Eyes Only'?"
"That's it. That movie was the start of my love affair with Greece. Blue sky, blue sea, and the startling white of the buildings. It looked so beautiful, that I always longed to come here and see it for myself. And then after seeing 'Clash of the Titans' I became interested in the myths, and in the history.
And now, even though I am actually here, I somehow can't quite believe it.
I started to think it would never happen."
Samara smiled. "I know. I felt like that the first time I was here."
"The depth of history is amazing isn't it? I mean some of these buildings and ruins have been here for centuries."
"Actually, speaking of buildings and ruins, there's a little town not far from here that used to be called Poteidaia. It has been here for thousands of years. Shall we go there after a siesta?" Samara asked.
"Sounds interesting," Briana told her.
After their siesta, they drove on and visited Poteidaia. Afterwards they continued on down the peninsula on a small road. Driving up the other side, they found a small taverna and had their dinner, then started to head back to Thessaloniki for the night.
Samara noticed that Briana was unusually quiet. "What's up?" she asked.
"Did it feel weird to you in Poteidaia?" Briana asked. "It did to me, almost like deja vu, you know, like I had been there before, but I haven't."
"Oh, I have felt like that sometimes too, but I think that it is probably because you've seen pictures of the place before, and your memory is playing tricks on you."
Yes, that might be it." Briana sounded unconvinced. "By the way, where are we?"
"Actually, I don't know," admitted Samara. "I keep hoping that I'll see a road I recognise soon, or a signpost that points to Thessaloniki. At least it doesn't get dark for another couple of hours yet. I'm sure that we'll be on the right road by then."
"I hope so," said Briana.
"I'm sure so," replied Samara.
Two hours later she was unconvinced. Dusk was starting to fall, and they had no idea where they were. Fifteen minutes later, Samara pulled the car over to the side of the road.
"I think we should stop here for the night," she told Briana. "I don't know where we are, there have been no villages for ages, and I don't really want to keep driving on this little road in the dark. There's a clearing over there, why don't you bring the blankets and some food, and I'll go and start a fire."
"Shouldn't we just keep driving?" Briana asked.
"Briana, I'm tired. It's nearly dark, I have no idea where we are or where this road goes. I think it's better to stop here, and to start out again fresh in the morning," replied Samara.
"Wouldn't it be better to stay in the car?"
"I think we'll be far more comfortable in a small camp for the night with a fire and the blankets," Samara told her. "I'm afraid that if we stayed in the car, someone might hit it in the dark."
"We've seen no one on this road in hours," Briana protested.
"Look, the fire will keep us warm, and it will be just like camping," cajoled Samara. "We can have something to eat, and snuggle down for the night, then in the morning we can look for someone to give us directions back to Thessaloniki."
"Oh all right. It is only for one night."
Samara found matches in the car's emergency kit and went to gather up some wood for a fire. Briana got the groundsheet and blankets out, and then got out some food. Putting them down where Samara would light the fire, she went back to the car.
"I'm grabbing my bag too," she called to Samara. "Do you want yours?"
"Oh, yes please," Samara called back. "I want to put on something warmer."
Briana got both of the bags, and went back into the clearing. Samara was brushing away all the vegetation from a patch of ground ready for her fire.
"Thanks," she said when Briana came back with their bags.
Briana pulled a jersey and some jeans out of her bag and put them on. As she stuffed her shorts back into her bag, her hand came to rest on the package that held the ring she had bought. Tonight might be a good time to give it to Samara. She put it in her pocket. Looking over the food they had, Briana asked Samara if she was hungry. Samara looked over from the fire she had managed to light.
"Yeah, some biscuits would be nice. Lets get these blankets spread out, shall we?"
As she and Briana sorted out the blankets, Samara looked at Briana ruefully.
"You know, this isn't exactly what I had in mind when I bought these yesterday."
"You mean you didn't plan to sleep with me?" Briana asked innocently.
Samara blushed. "No, I mean that I didn't intend to get us lost and have to spend the night in the forest."
"Oh, so you did plan to sleep with someone on them!" Briana smothered a laugh.
"Yes... no... Briana!! I didn't intend to sleep with anyone on them."
"Ok, so what you were planning doesn't require sleep."
Samara looked at Briana who was now laughing out loud. "I might have known that entering into a word battle with you was a bad idea." Samara was now laughing too. "Actually, I had only planned to use them to sit on. But now that you mention it... sleeping sounds like a good idea." She sat down in front of the fire. "Where are those biscuits?"
"Here." Briana picked them up and sat down next to Samara.
Samara pulled her jersey out of her bag, and put it on. The package with the ring she had bought for Briana fell into her lap. Samara smiled. Now would be a good time to give it to her.
Briana looked at her friend in the firelight. "Samara..."
At the same time, Samara said "Briana..."
They both laughed. "You first," Samara told Briana.
"This is for you, Samara, I... I hope you like it."
"And this is for you." Samara gave Briana her present. " I found it in the market place yesterday, and ..."
"So did I. I thought you might like it."
Briana had opened hers. "Oh, Samara, it's beautiful. Thank you so much. I'll treasure it always."
Samara opened hers. "Briana. It's lovely. Oh, thank you too." Samara put it on. It gleamed in the firelight. She looked at it more closely. "Briana..."
Briana had put hers on too. "Look, Samara. It fits perfectly." She waved her ring in front of Samara's face. Samara grabbed her hand to have a closer look.
Briana noticed first. "The pattern...it's the same. I mean, yours is carved and mine is filigree, but the pattern on both is the same. It's like they're a matching pair." She laughed. "They're perfect. A matching pair of friendship rings."
"What an amazing coincidence! I was told that yours is supposed to be very old."
Briana lay back on the blankets. "I've a great day... apart from getting lost."
Samara laid down too. "Me too. I love this ring." She leaned over and kissed
Briana lightly on the cheek. "Thank you..."
Briana smiled at her. "That's what friends are for."
Happy in companionship they lay there watching the stars in the sky until they drifted off to sleep.
I Love An Adventure, It's Something To Pass The Time...
Samara awoke the next morning wondering why she wasn't in her bed. Suddenly remembering getting lost, she sat up in a hurry. She looked around, but she couldn't see the car outside the clearing.
"Briana... Briana!!" She shook Briana.
Unused to being shaken awake, Briana sat up in a hurry. "What is it?"
Looking around she was suprised. "Where am I... oh yeah."
Samara was even more suprised. "What on earth are you wearing? When did you put that on?"
Briana looked down at the small pink frilly nightie that barely covered her breasts and grabbed the blanket covering her and Samara to wrap around her. This left Samara uncovered. As shocked as she was at her own dress, Briana laughed.
"What about you? You're no better."
Samara looked in bewilderment in the short brown linen shift she seemed to be wearing. Whatever else she remembered, she did not remember putting that on last night. In fact she distinctly remembered sleeping in shorts and a jersey. Seeing a cloak on the ground not far from her, she leaned over, picked it up and put it on. She looked at Briana.
"This isn't mine either." Remembering why she woke Brie, she said "And the car isn't over there."
"The car's been stolen?"
"I don't know." Samara got up, and walked through the bushes to where she thought she had left the car the night before. "Briana, come here..."
Briana went and stood next to Samara.
"There's no car."
"No car. And no road! This is really weird."
Briana didn't know whether to laugh or cry. "There's no car. There's no road.
You're wearing that, and I'm wearing this..." and she showed Samara the very short frilly pink nightie that left little to the imagination, "and you say it's
"It suits you," Samara said.
Briana glared at Samara.
"Umm... let's go and get dressed."
Briana stalked off back into the clearing. Samara took one more look at where the car should have been, then heard Briana cursing. Running, she went to see what the matter was now. One look in the clearing suggested what it was.
"No bags." It was a statement.
"No bags. No car. No road. I'm wearing a short pink frilly nightie..."
"I do not like green eggs and ham... I do not like them..." Catching sight of Briana's glare, Samara suddenly realised that this was not a good time to discover that she did have a sense of humour.
"And these." Briana decided to ignore Samara's attempt at wit, and held up a short brown skirt, and a skimpy top in a very ugly shade of green. "And this." She held up what looked like a leather bustier with a short skirt of strips of leather. "And these. This time she held up a staff and a sword. "If this is someone's idea of a joke it isn't funny!"
Samara went back over to the fire and sat down on the blanket. For the first time she realised that it was not the groundsheet and blanket they had bought but a fur rug. Over the fire stood a tripod with a tin of what looked to be some kind of meat stew.
"What's going on, Samara?" Briana sounded scared.
"I wish I knew. I suggest we get dressed, and go and see if we can find a village or something."
"Sounds good to me. Which one of these do you want?" Briana held up the outfits. The blanket slid to the ground unnoticed.
"Well, it doesn't look like the brown and green one will fit me."
Briana held the leather one up against herself. "Or this me. Here... it's yours."
"I'd thank you, but..." Samara was interrupted by the sound of someone coming through the bushes. A man of medium height with tousled blonde hair walked into the clearing. He was wearing leather trousers and a leather waistcoat that was unbuttoned, showing off a large green carving and hairless chest.
"Nice outfit, Gabrielle," he said to Briana. Briana was so startled she said nothing.
"I agree." Samara stood up, and smiled at Briana, who rewarded her with a filthy look in return.
"I'm not Xena."
The man looked at Briana. "She's not Xena," she affirmed.
He looked closer. "Sorry, Princess Diana. Nice to see you again."
"I'm not Diana."
The man tried again. "Meg... I should have realised..."
"Nope." Samara was becoming amused.
The man shook his head, and looked at Briana. "Xena's got another look-alike?"
"Who is Xena?" Briana asked.
"Gabrielle..." the poor man said.
"And I'm not Gabrielle."
Bewildered, he gave up. "Ok, suppose you tell me who you think you are."
Because she was wearing the cape, and Briana looked so embarrassed, Samara took the lead. She walked over to him and shook his hand. "Hi, I'm Samara, and this is my friend Briana. And you are..."
"Iolaus," the man supplied.
"Nice to meet you, Iolaus. I wonder if you could help us, you see..."
The bushes rustled again and they were joined by a tall, well muscled man with long light brown hair. He too, was wearing leather trousers, and a suede waistcoat, this time unfastened most of the way down, showing off his amazing muscles. He glanced around the small campsite.
"Nice outfit, Gabrielle." Briana was now so red, she was sure she was going to stay that way.
The stranger walked over and kissed Samara. "Morning, Xena."
She was too stunned to answer. It was Iolaus that said "She's not Xena."
Samara got her revenge in the look of pure horror that crossed the man's face.
"Princess Diana, I am so sorry..."
Iolaus grinned. "Nope."
And even more horrified, he asked "Leah?"
"No. Let me introduce you to Samara." He turned to Briana. "And Briana. This is my friend Hercules."
"You should be more careful about your choice of friends then." Samara was still upset at being kissed by a stranger.
However, Briana's curiosity was aroused. "Hercules? Like the Greek God?"
"Yes. But I'm only a Demi-God, my mother is a mortal."
Briana was confused. "Your mother is a mortal?"
"Yes, my father is Zeus."
Keeping her eyes on Hercules, Briana slowly bent down and picked up the sword and the staff. She backed over to Samara and gave her the sword.
"We know how to use these," she lied boldly.
"Just great," she said to Samara. "No car, no road, no bags, funny clothes and now a man who thinks he's a half God." She looked closer at Hercules. "And you look familiar."
"Perhaps we're just dreaming this," Samara told her.
"No, we surely wouldn't be having the same dream," Briana replied.
"Xena and Gabrielle did," interjected Iolaus helpfully. "When Gabrielle was chosen to be Morpheus' bride. They met in the dreamscape."
"Morpheus?" Briana asked. "And who are Xena and Gabrielle? And why did you think we were Xena and Gabrielle?"
"Morpheus is the God of dreams. Xena is the Warrior Princess, and Gabrielle is a bard, and Xena's travelling companion. You two look exactly like them. They travel around Greece doing good, and helping people. You're not that far from Gabrielle's village. It's called Poteidaia. It's only a couple of days from here."
"A couple of days? But we were only there yesterday afternoon. We left there around four o'clock, and got lost in the evening. We left our car out on the road, but it's not there now."
"Car? Yesterday?" Iolaus shook his head in confusion. "It's a good couple of day's walk from Poteidaia to here."
"You're on the road to Amphipolis," Hercules said helpfully. "It's a couple of days from here too."
"Amphipolis?" Briana's head was starting to ache.
"That's Xena's home town." Hercules stopped. Briana looked like she was going to cry. Samara looked murderous. Iolaus looked as confused as he felt.
"You two go and get dressed. Iolaus, go and get some more firewood. I'll get us all some breakfast, and then we'll sit down and see if we can't work this out." He saw them looking at the clothes. "Those," and he pointed at the leather outfit, " will fit you, Samara. And those will fit you, Briana." He pointed at the skirt and top. They both looked askance at him "Trust me. They're the same clothes that Xena and Gabrielle wear." He looked around. "Here's some boots for you both." he gave them a pair each. He handed Samara a breastplate too. "And there should be a linen shift to go under yours, Samara..."
Samara looked daggers at him. "I'm wearing it," she told him, and she stalked off into the bushes. Briana followed her.
"How did he know that?" she asked Samara.
"I'd suggest that he knows that Xena woman well."
"How do you know that?"
"Something to do with the way he kissed me. And that he knew what her underwear was..." Samara retorted.
Briana grinned. "He's drop dead gorgeous." She took off the pink nightie.
Samara sucked in her breath at her first glimpse of Briana's perfect creamy breasts as Briana put on the ugly green coloured top.
"How do I do this up?" she asked Samara.
Samara came over to Briana to help her lace it up. Unusually nervous, she found her hands sweating. Briana pulled at the top around her armpits.
"It's going to chafe," she complained. She put on the skirt, and then the boots and laced them up.
"And these boots don't go with this skirt," she said.
"I thought I was the fashion model," Samara laughed. "Here, will you help me do this up please," she asked Briana as she pulled on the leather dress.
Samara bent down to put on the boots. She slipped her feet into them then slowly pulled them up over her shins, and then up over her knees. She stood up, and it was Briana's turn to suck in her breath. The outfit suited Samara. She looked beautiful... and dangerous. She watched her pick up the breast plate and put that on too.
Samara glanced at Briana. "That looks better on than it did off,' she told her. "You look pretty."
"Why thank you," Briana returned. "I can see why they call Xena the Warrior Princess if she wears clothes like that. You look... beautiful." Briana put the full wealth of her newly found feelings into her words.
Samara suddenly became fascinated with the buckles on her breast plate.
"I'm... I'm going to go back to the road... I want to check again that the car isn't there."
"What if it's still not there?" Briana asked.
"We go back to Hercules and his friend. At least they know where there might be other people." Samara turned around and picked up the sword she had brought out with her.
"Do you think it's safe?"
"Well, at least we're armed. Better bring that staff, Briana."
"I still think we're dreaming. We're going to walk back to the road, the car will be there and we'll drive back to Thessaloniki. We can go back to bed, and wake up again later and this will not have really happened."
"We're not dreaming Briana."
"How do you know? Pinch me and we'll see."
"I already tried that on myself. It won't work..." Briana was just looking at her. "Ok, whatever you say."
"Ow! Ok, there goes that theory. Did you have to do it so hard?" She rubbed her arm.
"Sorry. Now for that road. Should be... this way."
She walked out to where the road would be. Instead of the paved road of yesterday, there was a dusty path. Samara sighed.
""I thought as much. Oh well, let's go back to the camp."
"Are you sure that is a good idea? What if they're murderers or something?"
"Briana, they obviously know and like this Xena and Gabrielle. And they offered to cook breakfast. Murderers aren't usually that accomodating. Besides, you said we know how to use these things." She wielded her sword.
"I was bluffing..."
"They don't know that. Xena and Gabrielle must know how to use the weapons they carry. That's to our advantage..." Samara stopped.
"I sure am glad you can see something positive in all of this."
"They must also need these weapons." For the first time Samara looked closely at the sword. A suspision was starting to form in her mind.
"Briana, no one uses weapons like this any more."
"I know. If you believe what you see on TV, everyone carries sub-machine guns..." She stopped as she realised what Samara was getting at.
"You think we might have travelled back in time? That's ridiculous. Straight out of a bad 'B' movie... isn't' it? But then I suppose that would explain these strange clothes, the lack of a road and our car... No. Surely not. Things like this don't happen to real people."
Samara just looked at Briana, shrugged, and walked back into the clearing.
Iolaus was squatting by the fire feeding it with the wood he had collected. Hercules was suprised to see them walk back into the clearing from a different direction to which they had left. With Samara now completely outfitted in leather battledress and armour and carrying a sword, he jumped to the wrong conclusion.
Samara found herself involved in a passionate kiss for the second time that morning. Totally swept up in the man's passion, she found herself responding.
Briana looked at Iolaus. He looked back.
"I take it that's still not Xena?"
"Does your friend usually go around kissing strangers?" Briana asked.
Iolaus smiled. "Obviously only ones who bear a startling resemblance to the Warrior Princess."
"Do you think they even realise we're here?"
"Sure doesn't look like it."
Samara was fully swept up in the man's magnetic charm. It had been a long, long time since a man had brought out this much passion in her responses.
Her need was now. Briana could wait... The thought of Briana made her realise where they were, and that they were not alone. She pulled away, and whispered in Hercules ear.
Hercules stopped instantly at the strange words. He looked around and caught sight of Briana and Iolaus.
"Oh, they've finally realised they've got an audience," Iolaus remarked to Briana.
Samara had to work hard to stop herself from blushing like a naughty schoolgirl.
Briana was trying hard to school her features too. She was somewhat disconcerted to discover that she minded that Samara was kissing someone else, and obviously enjoying it.
Hercules was trying hard to work out what was going on. She looked like Xena, and had Xena's same passion, but she wasn't Xena. Who was she?
That, he realised, he needed to find out.
Iolaus broke the silence.
"Breakfast anyone? Don't know about you, but I'm starving."
He went over to the fire and started serving up the stew that was cooking.
"So," Hercules asked, "Why don't you tell us how you happen to be here?"
"Well," started Briana, "Yesterday we drove the car we had hired to Poteidaia from Thessaloniki..." She stopped at Iolaus' baffled look.
"What is a car? And what is drove? How could you get from Thessaloniki to here in one day? It's at least a seven day's walk from here.."
"Why don't you tell us about you," Samara interjected smoothly.
She was now almost certain her theory was right, and wanted confirmation. Everyone knew what a car was in 1998, and almost no one walked anywhere. Certainly not distances like they had driven yesterday. And Hercules and Iolaus were just looking too confused to be faking it. With the clothes and weapons, and a man who sure acted sane but who said that Zeus was his father... she really didn't like the conclusion she was coming to.
"Oh, you know," said Iolaus, "We just wander around the countryside doing good deeds, fighting monsters and solving problems. Often ones that Herc's half -brothers and sisters or Stepmother have caused."
"Who are your half - brothers and sisters, then?" Briana asked Hercules.
"Ares is one of my half brothers, Apollo is another. Aphrodite and Artemis are two of my half sisters. My Stepmother is Hera, and as I told you, my Father is Zeus, " Hercules told them.
"But they're all Greek Gods and Goddesses..."
"He's certainly well connected, " Iolaus laughed.
"No, seriously. That's enough joking around. Exactly what kind of fools do you take us for?" Briana was getting angry.
Iolaus looked around for something.
"Look, we can prove we are who we say we are." He spied a bag on the ground near the sleeping furs. "Here. In here... this is your proof." He picked up the bag and pulled out a long skinny object and gave it to Briana.
"These are Gabrielle's scrolls. She writes down everything that has happened to her and Xena."
Briana took the scroll and started to read it while Iolaus kept looking through the bag.
"Here it is. The story of Prometheus. This was the first time Hercules and I met Gabrielle. Xena helped Hercules free Prometheus from the chains Hera had bound him in."
He handed the scroll to Briana.
Briana looked helplessly at Samara. This really could not be happening, surely? Samara just stared back.
"They're the Gods and Goddesses from Ancient Greece," Briana muttered to herself.
"Exactly how far back in time did you think we might have travelled?" she asked Samara. "I mean, I know I said that I enjoyed 'Clash of the Titans', but that doesn't mean that I wanted to be IN it!"
"Time travel?" asked Iolaus. "Hercules has done that too. Usually the Gods are involved in that... So what time are you from?"
For the first time in a while, Samara spoke.
"We're from 1998. If this is Ancient Greece, that's around 3000 years from now."
"What do you mean by Ancient?" asked Hercules.
"That's what we call this period of history in our time," Briana explained. "Because it is... or was... so long ago."
"If this is Ancient Greece then what I'd like to know," interjected Samara, "Is how we got here. And even more so, how we are going to get back to our own time."
Briana couldn't agree more.
End of Part Two.
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