By Her Royal Highness Kandis Glasgow
Kinda sounds fancy. Don't you think?
Disclaimers: Ever have one of those days. Well, I had two in a row. My parents came to town yesterday to move my first load of furniture to storage.(FYI and in case you didn't know. I am moving in January to NZ to do missions as a sign interpreter and just be a good guy in general.) While this is all going on, I am having a major plumbing back up in my building. Of course MY condo is the main unit for clean out, but the plumbers can't find it (The clean out, not my condo). In the mean time, my unit floods with raw sewage that my family is having to traipse through to move my stuff out. Isn't this pleasant? I could tell you more but I'll spare you. It's been two days and it's still backed up. Let's just say that I need new carpet and I am praying that my homeowners insurance won't balk at this as the sewer is the HOA's gig. So here I sit with a love seat, one coffee table, a lamp and my laptop in a condo that smells slightly of rotten oranges. I love life!!
OK. That wasn't a disclaimer. This is. Xena, Gabrielle, Jan, Mel, Cyrene, Ares, and Ephiny do not belong to me. They are the property of Renaissance Pictures. I am not profiting from this in any way and no copyright infringement is intended in the use of these characters.
Candace, Taylor, Skye, Terra, Spencer, Terran, Julisa, Giva, Krista, Lissa, Lineah, Delmar, Kimi and The new hot warrior babe (written just for Phantom) Rian, all belong to me. And if you think this is confusing.......hooooo yaaaah. You should be in my head. It gets crowded!
Sexual Disclaimers: Oh man. If you have come this far and have to ask, you are soooo in the wrong place. Chicks are having sex with chicks. Dudes are all over each other. Nuff said. If this is offensive to you.......well, honestly I have nothing to say. You are in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong alibi. You did it in the library with the candlestick. If this is illegal where you live (like in UTAH) don't read this at all. NO STOP!!!! DON'T READ IT!! Shew! That was close. OK. If you are underage, listen up jailbait, GO! NOW! That should do it. I know it always worked with me. Any time an adult said not to do someting....I sure stopped right then. Riiiight.
Wife swapping Disclaimer: Some have been offended by my wife swapping X&T, C&G sexually explicit romps. ( I have soiled the sacred relationship of X&G. No really I have e-mails that say so) So, I am putting in a new and improved, smells cleaner, anti-bacterial, disclaimer. There is X&T action in the first part of this chapter. Skip the first section if you don't like that. It's very short. YOU HAVE BEEN DISCLAIMED!
Language: Now if you have to ask if they swear, you don't know our Doctor Jan. She's got a mouth on her for sure! Whooo hoo! Got it? Good.
Hanky Alert: I shed a few tears writing this section, so I am giving it a one ^ hanky alert. Don't worry. No one dies.
Spoilers: Uh huh! Nasty spoiled rotten, just like my carpet.
Thanks for reading! If you have never written me and even if you have, I could sure use a few
e-mails to let me know you're out there. Pass my stuff off on your friends. Let your dog read it. You can ask the cats, but they don't care too much about what we as humans do. UgoXena@aol.com. Thanks!
Who knew it would go this far?
Taylor tried to stand to her feet and found that the best she could do was to kneel. Her hand went to her forehead. She wasn't sure what to do. Luckily for her, Jules heard her cry and a heavy fall to the ground. The Commander was at her side in seconds flat.
"Taylor! By the Gods." She rushed to the tall warrior's side with great concern showing in her jade eyes. Her rock solid arms went around the smaller woman. "Hey, are you ill?"
"I.I I'm not." She wasn't sure what had happened, but sickness wasn't it.
"Can you stand?"
One thing Taylor was sure of was her inability to get to her feet. "No."
Jules evaluated the situation for a few seconds. "Is Candace alright?"
Taylor's blue eyes stared into the depths of her Commander's. "Yes. She's fine." Her straight face belied the intense emotions that coursed through her.
Even Taylor's cool demeanor couldn't hide her turmoil. "Taylor, you can't work like this. I'll find someone to replace you." She made a shrill bird call that was soon answered by a lower call. "I will have Larna cover this section. If I help you, can you make it to camp?"
"Yes. I think so." She wasn't all that sure, but she would make the effort.
"Good. I'll take you to the main tent." She figured Taylor would want to be with the rest of the warriors.
"No. Take me to Xena." She stood very shakily to her feet. Luckily, Jules caught her before she could fall.
"As you wish, your Highness." The brave commander knew better than to ask questions. If Taylor wanted to be with the Warrior Princess then that is where she would go.
Taylor had gotten her legs partially under her by the time the two women made the camp perimeter. Jules refused to leave her side until she was safely at Xena's tent. "Thank you, Commander. I don't think I could have made it here without you." She staggered slightly as her knees still threatened to give out. Jules caught her once again.
"You're welcome, your Highness. Get some rest." The commander nodded to her as she released her hold.
"I will. Thank you." She straightened her stance. She would stand upright if it was the last thing she did.
Jules gave her one stern look before she turned away to take her leave. As she made her way back to the sentry line she realized she wanted nothing more than to go home. Giva had moved out that afternoon with Candace and Gabrielle, leaving her alone to contemplate their love. The blonde's shoulder wound was healing nicely and she was well to travel. With nothing she could do here, she had chosen to go back to the compound. Jules sighed at the very thought of the woman she loved. She really wanted to go home. She turned back to watch Taylor's broad frame disappear through the canvas flap of Xena's tent. Her jade eyes filled with thoughts she couldn't make work for her. She saw the same things that all who cared to look saw. Love. Stronger, deeper and more intense than any of them would ever know in a thousand lifetimes. She smiled in amused amazement. Some women got everything and then some.
Taylor took a deep breath before she stepped through the flap. "Xe?"
Xena sat up quickly. Covers flew aside as the warrior jumped from the bed. She crossed the room in split seconds trying to reach Taylor faster than light. She engulfed the shaky warrior in a strong and emotional embrace. Taylor returned the ferocity of the connection.
"Are you OK?" The Princess captured Taylor's face in her hands. She placed a soft kiss on her lips.
"Barely. Can we lay down?" Taylor was oblivious to the fact that Xena was gloriously naked.
"Sure. Let me get you out of this gear." She guided the shaken warrior to the bedside. She sat Taylor down. Buckles, hooks and ties loosened to let armor, weapons and leather fall to the floor. "Lift your arms." Taylor did as she was told allowing Xena to pull her undershirt up over her head. "Stand up." Taylor struggled to her feet. Xena caught her arm before she could fall back to the bed. "You're a mess."
"Tell me something I don't know." She watched as sure hands untied the leather that held her skirt on her slim hips. The covering dropped to the floor.
"I see you opted for underwear finally." Xena smiled at her.
"Well, I couldn't very well let the whole world see what I had to offer. I put them on right after......" She blushed deeply.
Xena untied the cotton that held the boxers. Her hands pushed them over her hips. Xena kissed her again. "I'm glad. I don't think I want the entire Amazon nation seeing what you have to offer, anymore than I would want you to offer it to them." With a smile she led Taylor by the hand as she motioned to the soft mattress. "Come on. Get in."
Taylor gratefully slid into the bed with Xena right behind her. The Warrior Princess pulled the covers over them. She slid her long frame against the back of the firefighter. Taylor shivered at the contact. Her shaking didn't cease. Her body shook to the point of spasms.
Xena pulled her closer. "Tay? What's wrong?" Her chin rested on Taylor's shoulder.
"I I I dddon't knnnow." She was beginning to sound like Terran.
"I think I know." She reached around slowly to Taylor's center. The hidden ridge was hard and swollen with need.
"Ohhhh God. Wwwhy, Xena?" She pushed her hips down.
"You know why. You have to let this go or it's going to take you over." Her fingers expertly circled the small tender flesh. "Let go, Tay." Xena kissed her neck then nipped at the skin. It was only mere seconds before Taylor's agony transformed to utter ecstasy.
"Uhhhhnnn. GOD!" Her legs jumped with the release of built up pressure. It was the magic tingles of flames dancing that caused a smile of total satisfaction creep across her face. "Oh yeeessss!"
"That's it. Let it all go. Oh yeah! Mmmm." Xena whispered her encouragement. Like Taylor needed any. When the small shudders and spasms were slowly becoming a memory, Xena pulled her hand up to sweetly embrace her bed partner. "Perfect."
"Thanks. In my never to be humble opinion, I had nothing to do with it." She stretched her long limbs against the warrior behind her. Freshly stretched, she curled up again. "It was them. What is with this?"
"Sex power. Oh there's one for the history books." She giggled.
"Don't let them hear you doing that. You'll ruin our rep." Xena snickered.
"Our rep. Where on Earth did you pick that up?" Taylor peeked over her shoulder.
"Jan." Nuff said.
"Jan. Right. Anyway, back to the subject. Sex power."
"It's not sex. It's love. Perfect love." Xena knew the love, but still wasn't sure of the reason.
Taylor thought back to words she had said to Candace the first time they had ever made love. It was the perfect moment. "But, all of us? Candace and I had that one moment. They had that, didn't they?"
"Yeah. And they shared it with us." She smiled into Taylor's back.
The firefighter closed her eyes. Exhaustion began to settle into her very bones. "Hoo ya. That they did. Remind me to thank them." She was breathing deeply before she had a chance to say 'good night'. The Warrior Princess was close behind.
"US? No way. NO way! No WAY!" Terra was incredulous.
"Honey, if you think about it, it makes perfect sense." Skye ran a tender hand down her lover's arm.
Spencer watched the interplay between the two women. They had much to learn.
"Skye......" She sighed heavily. She would be doing that a lot. "How do you figure?"
"Well, when you picked up the Glass it felt right. You said so, remember. Then I knew exactly how to use it. Terra, we are." Skye implored her lover sweetly.
"Yes, you are." Spencer's voice was quiet as he addressed the two women.
Terra turned to look at her brother. She took a deep breath then sighed again. "How can two people do it?" She squeezed the bridge of her nose between her fingers. This was really giving her a headache.
"Same as one. Only you two have an advantage. You see things as they should be. Skye feels if things are right."
"Fuckin' A." Terra shook her head.
"You've been hanging out with Jan too long." Skye giggled at her comment.
Terran, who had been strangely quiet during the conversation, laughed quietly. "Yeah."
"Nooo." She loved the small warrior doctor in spite of any influence she had on her. "OK Spencer, say we do this. What do we do?"
"First you have to go to the Fates and they offer you the Glass." He started pacing the small area in the tent.
Terra furrowed her brows. "But you said that the next person just picks it up and poof." She spread her hands quickly in front of her.
"Under normal circumstances, yes. You were supposed to take it anyway, before Creighton got it that is. But since things were messed up we have to start at the beginning again. For the two of you to become Time we have to go to the Fates." Spencer looked back and forth at the two women, praying they would say yes. He was tired.
"Why can't you just stay in office?" Terra was beginning to feel the weight of what they were called to do.
Time gazed at his sister. "My time is finished. It's time for me to start a new life. A real life. A life with Terran." He smiled broadly at the blonde young man. Terran smiled back at him.
"How do you know him?" Skye had seen the interaction as more than what it appeared.
"I have followed him everywhere through his life, many times over. When he showed up here I knew it was time for me to retire. I want what you have, Ter. Don't you think it's time for me?"
"I don't know. How long you've been doing this?" She wanted to be sure he was ready to give it all up.
"Three hundred years or so." He was ready.
Terran burst out before the other two could say a word or look shocked. "THREE HUNDRED? How? I mean, you look......and......three hundred? Wow. I mean .....wow. I don't understand."
Spencer smiled at his soulmate. He snaked a strong arm around him with a kiss on the top of his golden head. "It's hard to explain. I move up and down the time line, everywhere, every time. Time is not when you are Time and yet it is only for you when you are Time. You see, time for me passes but it doesn't for you, because I can go anywhere and anytime I chose in your time. See?"
"Not really. What you're saying is that you are three hundred years old." The blonde healer was trying to take it in.
"Three hundred and twenty seven. But not really. I have seen a hundreds, maybe even thousands of lifetimes of history. I have changed the time line in the most simple of ways, like getting a cat out of a tree, and in huge ways, like making sure the message from the U.S. sub in the central Pacific never reached Pearl Harbor."
"Pearl Harbor? What's that?" Skye squinched up her nose.
"Long story. Let's just say if I hadn't, the States would never have entered the war and you would be speaking German. It was horrible to have to do but necessary." He looked to the ground. It was things like that, where thousands of people died as a result, that made him tired.
"I don't know what you're talking about, but it sounds like I.....we have to do horrible things." Skye didn't at all like the fact that their actions would cause destruction and death.
"You will. But, all of those things are for the good. You get to do wonderful things as well. Getting couples to meet, fall in love and have children. Most people do that on their own or with Cupid's help. Sometimes, if the child to be produced can change history I'll step in. Like with the Bill Gates thing. Oh yeah and Zephram Cochran."
"Who?" Terran had no clue as to history.
"The inventor of the first warp drive."
Terra looked at Skye. They both shrugged. "Never heard of him."
"It's not important. When you go to the Fates you will learn from them all of history as it should be, then you will understand what it is you need to do to and when you need to do it."
"That's why Miss Melinda has been teaching me history." Skye was beginning to think that her maternal friend had more insight than she let on.
"Why?" Terra was trying so hard to understand all that was happening.
"So, I could know how things should be. There is too much for us to learn, Spencer. How will we do it in the time we need?"
"Remember. Time isn't here when you have the Glass. Time is with you. Time will pass where you are as you learn, then you will return to now or the time appointed by the Fates. Time will not have passed for us except what you allow."
"I see." Skye shook her head.
Terra looked strangely at her. "You do? I don't."
Skye patted her arm again. Sometimes you had to keep your warrior placated. "You will, honey. We have to do this, Ter. He's tired and we are the ones."
"I know. I just wish I didn't. When do we go?" Terra sighed again.
"As soon as I get the Glass." Spencer
"Xena has it. I dare you to go get it from her." Terra gave Spencer a challenge.
He picked up the gauntlet. "I know what's going on, Ter. You can't scare me."
"You know what? What do you know?" More questions she didn't have the answers to. Sometimes she got so frustrated with the whole thing.
"Nothing. Let's just say in the end, they save us all. I'll be right back." Spencer flipped up the tent flap up and was gone before the other had a chance to react.
"They save us in the end. What the hell does that mean." Skye creased her brows and tilted her head.
"Now, I'd say you've been hanging around Miss Candace too much." Terra gave her lover a light poke in the ribs
"She could never do that. Miss Candace is the best." Terran almost gushed.
"THE best. I don't think so. Jan. Now, she could be the best." Terra was getting closer to the feisty doctor. Jan was her new idol.
"And Ah would be chopped livah?" Skye used her best southern belle accent.
"NOW you have been around Miss Melinda too much. No, you are not chopped liver. ACK I hate liver. That and peas. Ueeeewwwwph." She shuddered at the thought of the foods.
Skye slipped under her arm. "What am I then?"
"Ice cream." Terra kissed the top of her head.
"Ice cream?" She had tasted the concoction. It was too rich for her.
The tall warrior leaned into her lover to whisper. "Yeah. Sweet and creamy."
"Aaaah! I can't believe you said that!" Skye blushed deeply.
Terra wrapped strong arms loosely around her. "It's true."
"You two make me understand what it is that Spencer wants. But, I'm not sure I can give it to him." Terran looked at the ground then back to the concerned faces peering at him.
Skye saw the look of despair cross his handsome face. "Why not?"
"I don't know how to love someone. He will be disappointed in me. Then he will leave." Terran did not tear up or become emotional with the words. He believed what he said.
"Terran, why on Earth would you believe that? He loves you." The blonde stepped to him and placed a tender hand on his arm.
He placed a large hand over hers. "I know he does, Skye. I can feel it as well as you."
"Then, why?" Terra moved close to her lover's brother.
"I have never been loved before, Ter. I don't know what to do. How do I love someone? I don't understand." He tried to explain his heart but he had no words.
"Terran, you don't do anything. You just love him." His sister felt his trepidation and pain.
"Just love him......how?" He wanted for Spencer all the magic love could bring. He didn't think he knew how to give him magic.
Skye broke out laughing. "Flowers? Terra, stop!" Skye lightly slapped her arm.
"It worked for Xena." She shrugged. "At least that's what she said."
"He wants advice about love, Terra, not gardening."
"Flowers are good. Give him flowers." The dark haired young woman had gotten the same advice not so very long ago. She had yet to give Skye flowers. Soon.
"Flowers are love?" Terran wasn't sure now if he really wanted advice.
"No, flowers show that you love him and that's what you're looking to do. You already love him." Skye appreciated her lover's effort at giving advice on love. It was not in the warrior genes, that was a given.
"How can I love him? I just met him." He tilted his head.
"Terran, you love him." Skye made him face his feelings.
He stood for a few minutes trying to battle his emotions. If he didn't love Spencer then there would be nothing to lose when Spencer left him. It didn't work. "Yes. I love him. It feels like I have known him forever. I am so afraid. What if I do things wrong?" Fear was overwhelming him. He had never dreamed to be in a place like this.
"Like what? What could you do that you think is wrong?" Skye wanted so badly to help her brother have what she had; a chance to share his life with his soulmate.
"Well," he blushed brightly, "you know..." He waggled his head around a lot, hoping they would catch on.
Terra pushed her head forward trying to get him to finish his sentence. He didn't. "Know what?"
"Youuuu know." He wiggled his eyebrows.
"Ohhhhhh. Oh. You don't know about that?" Terra was scared to death at that very moment. She would never be able to explain it if he didn't know.
"Sort of. I mean I.....they made me....well. I just want to make sure I do things right." He looked with great hope to Skye. His sister had to know something.
"Honey, trust me, he'll like everything you do. Just imagine what you would like and do that." Sound advice from the empath.
"But I don't know what I like. I never had the chance to......enjoy anything. Skye, you know what it's like. Tied up and tortured for the most part."
Terra put a hand on his shoulder. "Let him show you, Terran. He knows what he likes and I can tell you from experience he'll know what you like."
"From experience? Have you been with him?" He was shocked.
"Oh No! I meant Skye knew what I liked. I had never been with anyone. It was wonderful. She taught me to love her, Terran. Let Spencer do the same for you." Terra put a strong arm around her new friend. "It will all work out. He will never leave you, Ter. For heavens sake, he has followed you for three hundred years. I think he's in for life."
"I'm into what for life?" Spencer slipped back in as quickly as he had left. In his hand the Glass glowed with life.
"What makes you think we're talking about you?" Skye teased Time.
"There are only two 'he's' around here. I'm one of them and the other is right there. Logic."
"Smarty pants." Terra stuck her tongue out at him which he was thrilled to return.
Skye shook her head at them. "We were having a talk about fidelity." She didn't want to give away Terran's fear.
"Why would you talk about me?" He tilted his face. His blue eyes became confused as he looked at the man he loved with all of his heart.
"Terra? Will you join me outside for a minute?" Skye entreated her lover with a look. Terra frowned at her for a second.
"Oh! Right. I need to talk to you anyway." Terra held the flap for the small blonde woman.
"Will you excuse us?" Skye nodded at them as she stepped out.
Spencer frowned looking at them then back to Terran. "Sure."
The two women stepped out into the cool clear evening.
"Terran? What's going on?" He set the instrument down on the bed.
"I uh....nothing." Green eyes gazed at him.
Spencer stepped close to him. With one finger to Terran's chin, he rasied those emerald eyes to look at him. "I love you, Terran. I have loved you for hundreds of years. Tell me what's in your heart."
"Wwwell yyou ssee.......aah!" He took a deep breath like everyone had been teaching him to do. "I think you will be disappointed in me." He tried to drop his head but Spencer wouldn't let him.
Spencer bent to him. His lips grazed Terran's then pressed fully. He pulled back and peered with his sky blue eyes at the very soul of Terran. "I will prove to you every day of your life my love for you if you will only let me."
"But, Spencer, I don't know what you.......how to......I know about sex OK? I just don't know about love." He laid his head on Spencer's broad chest.
"Don't you understand? You are love. Do you love me, Terran? I have to know. I mean we just met, but I know you. I know every thing about you. You played baseball in high school. You were really good, good enough for the Majors, but you gave it up for med-school. You're supposed to be a doctor. You stayed single your whole life because you never met the right person. That person was me but I wasn't there. I'm here now, Terran. I'm here." He whispered the last words, praying for the answer. "Do you? Love me that is."
"I do. I know I do." He hugged the taller man tighter. He felt the kiss that Spencer put on his head. It made him grin.
"Good. For now, that's all we need." His cheek rested on the man's head for a minute. "Let me get them in here. We need to get things fixed."
"Spencer, when they fix time, will I remember you?" He was afraid he would forget it all.
The muscular man smiled at him. "Everyone who knows of the time shift will remember this time and these people, even though time will be changed. It's odd, but the ones that find out about the shifts keep their memories. There are those who have met and fallen in love at this time. I am sure that Terra and Skye will find a way to keep them all together."
"Am I going to be a doctor again?"
"Yep. I'm gonna marry a doctor. Ya gotta love it." Spencer released Terran with a gentle hug. He went to the tent flap.
"You're gonna marry a doctor? What does that mean? I've heard of marriage before, but no one did that in the colonies." Green eyes followed broad shoulders that almost made him lose his train of thought.
Before he pulled the hatch back he turned to answer Terran. "Marriage is when two people take vows to love, honor, cherish each other together forever. That's marriage."
"Who are you going to marry?" Fear welled up again. What if Spencer wanted to marry another man.
"You, silly." Spencer's grin lit the tent.
"You're going to marry me?" His smile threatened to blind Time.
"Well, yeah. Didn't you think I would make an honest man of you?" He moved from the flap to his soulmate.
"I never thought about that kind of thing." He shrugged.
"Terran, will you marry me?" His blue eyes were full of truth.
Terran had heard of marriage, but what it was and how one did it was a complete mystery. "What do I have to do?"
"There is this big ceremony where lots of people listen to you tell the other person how you feel and what you promise." Typical wedding. But the wedding and the marriage were two different things.
"Oh, I don't know. Lots of people?" Crowds scared him.
"Or there can be a few close friends. Whatever suits you best." Spencer would give Terran whatever type of wedding the ex-slave desired.
Terran shook his head with great enthusiasm. "I like that one."
"So will you?" The question had yet to be answered.
"Will I what?" It seemed Terran had forgotten the question.
Spencer's voice turned soft and serious. "Marry me?"
Terran thought the answer was obvious. "I will, but I still don't know how."
The tall platinum haired man was more thrilled than he let on. He was finally going to get a chance to share his life with the only person who would make him complete. "Let me handle the hard parts, OK? You just show up."
Terran's quick nod gave the answer before he did. "You got it."
Two heads popped in the tent. "Are you two done yet?"
"We're getting married." Terran beamed.
"Oh! I am so happy for you!" Skye ran to embrace both of them. "That is so sweet. I'm so jealous!"
"You are?" Terra looked down at her lover with a look of deep concern. She had never even thought that Skye would want to marry her. It made no sense. They were in love and she had thought that was enough.
Skye turned to face her. "Not in a bad way, sweetheart. I just wish we.......nevermind." She turned back to the two men before she let her emotions get the best of her. "Congratulations, Spencer."
"Wait a minute." Terra put her hands on the smaller woman's shoulders. "Skye, turn around please."
Skye took one of Terran's deep breaths and turned around. Her green eyes met the love of her soul.
"Skye, I love you with every beat of this stupid heart of mine." She took both of Skye's delicate hands in her own callused ones then brought them to her lips. She kissed them softly then drew them to her chest drawing Skye into her as well. "Will you please be my wife?"
Skye couldn't help the emotions that took her over. "I already am." She threw her arms around a very grateful assassin.
"You are? I don't have anything to give you, Skye. You know, like Miss Candace's necklace, or the ring Miss Jan got for Melinda."
"She got her a ring? When? Where? Is she going to give it to her?" Skye suddenly was concerned with her friend rather than herself.
"I don't know." Terra frowned at her partner.
Skye took in the look on Terra's face and remembered the statement of her lover. She lifted a hand to her cheek. "Sweetheart, you gave me the only thing I will ever need. You gave me you."
Terra smiled and swept the small woman to her arms. For several minutes the two women reveled in themselves, forgetting the fact that they had company.
Spencer cleared her throat. They slowly broke apart. "Guys, we need to go."
Terra set Skye to the ground. The smaller woman turned to Spencer. "Can't we say good-bye first?"
He shrugged. "They don't have to know you're gone."
"No, but we will know. I have to say good-bye." She was adamant.
"Very well, we have to make it quick." He sighed.
"Why the hurry all of a sudden." Terra wanted a chance to bid farewell to her friends as well.
"Because I have the Glass back. I have to use it or.....well, I have to use it." He didn't want to try to explain.
"I can get sick sort of. The power builds up and it can be quite painful."
"Do you ever rest? Will we?" Skye wondered at the stamina it must take. To think he had done this for three hundred years was staggering.
"One day a week you will rest. The remainder of the time you're busy. Today is not the day for rest. Let's go."
"One day? Just one?" Terra was not so sure this was the gig for her.
"Was it better being a slave?" Terran got to the heart of it.
"Good point. Let's go." Terra headed toward the door.
"Uh, Terra? Not that way." Spencer held up the glass.
"Spencer? Do you want me to wait here?" Terran wanted to go so as not to be away from the man he loved.
"Yes, love. I'll be right back." Spencer nodded.
"OK. I'll be waiting."
"Not long you won't." Spencer kissed him even though he would never know he was gone. "I love you."
Terran's heart wanted to burst out of its chest. "OOOK."
Spencer laughed. "OK? I'm glad you approve." Spencer kissed him sweetly. "You're going to be a hoot to live with."
Skye laughed and elbowed Spencer in the ribs. "A hoot? You've been around Cyrene too much." The room sparkled and they were gone.
Terran stood there for a split second trying to form a thought when the room sparkled again.
"Hey, baby. Miss me?" Spencer scooted quickly next to the handsome blonde.
Terran grinned. "You have no idea."
"That's good to hear." The tall man kissed him deeply. The few hours he had been gone were only seconds to Terran.
"Did they go?" The kiss had his heart racing again.
"Yeah. They're going to be good." He sighed with relief. He could finally rest and his life was going to begin tonight.
"How did the rest of them take the news?"
"YOU'RE WHAT? Fuck ME! I just fucking got used to you and now you're taking off on some wild fuckin' goose chase. Damn! Shit! Fuck!" Jan smacked her fists on the bed.
"Miss Jan, It's not a wild goose chase and you will hardly know we are gone. At least the first time." Skye tried to calm the doctor down. She didn't approve of their new calling.
"First tahme? I don't undahstand." Sitting in her soft cotton nightgown, Melinda had tears in her eyes. Out of the eight of them for some odd reason she was the least emotional. Right this minute her heart was breaking and the tears fell despite her effort to stop them.
"We are going now to the Fates to learn our role as Time. We will return in what will be only hours or days to you." Skye did the best she could to explain their new roles.
"So why are you upsetting us now?" Jan's anger was out of sorrow at losing her dearest friends.
"Because, to us it could be years." Skye looked at her friends with great sorrow in her heart. Tears welled up and she couldn't begin to stop them. She didn't even want to try.
"Skye, how do we protect them without you?" Melinda knew that when they took on the new office things would change between the four of them.
"Miss Melinda, you will find a way." Skye knew her promise was valid, she just didn't know how.
Terra had a sudden realization. "You have Spencer and Terran now. They will be all that you need."
"How do you know?" The professor knew the answer but asked anyway.
"Mi....." Terra sat next to her. She picked up the older woman's hands in her own. "Melinda, I just know. Everything we are doing is exactly as it should be. You won't even know we're gone."
"I will know in mah heaht. God go with you both." Mel kissed Terra's strong cheek. "I love you." She looked at Janice. "We love you."
Jan's head dropped then she looked back up. "Yeah, we do. More than you will ever be able to imagine."
Terra pulled back from the dark haired professor. She had a look of wonder on her face. She looked at Skye, not having any idea what to say.
Skye stepped to them with her arms open wide. The four women embraced. Tears were abundant.
"Ladies, we really have to go." Spencer wanted to be as patient as she could but they had more people to see.
"OK. We will see you in a few days." Terra laughed.
"Got that right, Squirt." Janice patted the girl's cheek. She turned to Skye. "See you soon, Skye. Take care of her."
"I will, Jan. Gotta go." She pulled away quickly with a smile, trying to hide her sadness.
The three stood in the center of the tent. The room sparkled and they were gone.
Janice looked at her very distraught lover. "It's OK Belle. It's who they were always meant to be."
"Ah know. That doesn't make it easiah howevah." Melinda knew in her heart that the women were taking on the role that had been set for them eons ago. "It doesn't make it easiah." She curled up next to her lover. Sleep would be hard in coming.
"Xena?" The sweet voice filled the tent.
"I'm awake, Skye. I wish you guys would stop popping in and out of here. We're trying to sleep."
"I'm sorry. We need to talk to you." Terra didn't want to upset the warrior.
Xena turned her body over with a huff to look at the two girls. The serious look on their faces told her that it couldn't wait. She leaned over Taylor. "Tay? Hey, baby wake up."
A very sleepy voice answered her. "Is it time to get up?"
She groaned seductively. "Ohhh. Did you want to..."
"Taylor! Later." She grinned at their visitors. Her elbow nudged the sleepy woman. "Wake up."
The firefighter turned over. "Why?"
"They need to talk to us."
Taylor finally opened her eyes. "Wh...o." She frowned when she saw the three of them. "This can't be good."
"It's not bad, Miss Taylor." Skye breathed deeply.
"Why don't I believe you." She looked at Spencer. Why he would be there she wasn't sure, but it was bound to be unsettling.
"We're leaving." Terra was never one to mince words.
Taylor sat up quickly. She was awake now. "Leaving? WHY?"
"If I told you we're going to be the new Time, would you believe me?" Skye wanted to let them in on it gently.
"YOU!" Xena pointed at Spencer.
"What?" He was going to remain calm if it was the last thing he did.
"YOU did this!" She jabbed her finger at him again.
"No. The Fates did this. All I did was ask." He stood bravely before his relative.
"Damn!" Taylor whacked the bed. It must be a warrior thing.
"Let us get something on, OK?" Xena wanted to embrace the women before they left. If there was one person who understood the effect of simple acts in time it was her. The two young women were taking on a huge challenge.
"Yeah. Hurry. We have to go see Candace and Gabrielle, too." Terra wasn't looking forward to leaving the two blonde women. Candace had saved them. Not from Creighton, but from themselves.
"Oh, I am so glad I won't be there to see that." Xena shook her head at the thought. Candace loved these two women as if they were her children.
The three turned around so the women in bed could pull on their cotton sleep shirts. They both got up and waited for an explanation" Alright. What's this all about?"
"Well, Taylor, it's like this. We are going to the Fates to take the Glass and learn our role."
"Will we ever....," Taylor started to tear up, "see you again?"
"You will see us very soon." Terra spoke softly. Deep sorrow was beginning to fill her heart.
"That is soon in our time." Xena understood. Taylor's frown showed that she was thinking it through.
"Yes." The tears were coming and Terra couldn't hold them back. She hated this.
"How long will you be with the Fates?" The warrior knew they were making a large commitment and was proud of them in spite of her own feelings.
"Years. Oh Xena, I'm going to miss you so much!" Skye's green eyes welled up with tears again. She ran to the waiting arms of the tall warrior.
The Warrior Princess caught the small woman in her embrace. "And I you, little one. I know this is difficult for you, Miss Skye. Remember we love you." She kissed her head. "We love you. Take that with you and hold it when you think you can't go on. OK?" The blonde head shook in affirmation.
Taylor walked up to Terra with her arms open. Terra remembered her first hug had come from the strong firefighter. She fell into the embrace as if it would be her last. Taylor tried her best to convey her emotions through her tears. "I don't really understand all of this, but I know you'll do a great job. I love you both." She kissed Terra's cheek.
The assassin's tears told the story. "We love you, too."
Skye and Terra switched places. When the embraces were finished, they knew it was time to go.
"We will see you soon." Skye smiled through her sorrow.
"You got that right. Take care of each other." Xena nodded at Spencer.
The room sparkled and the room suddenly had a very empty feeling.
"They'll be OK. Right?" Taylor was sad and wasn't sure why. She would see them in a few days.
"They'll be fine, Tay." She pulled Taylor to her. "They'll be fine."
She stared where they had just been standing. Even though she knew they would soon see the two women again, her heart felt the loss.
There was a light in the room that played in the deep recesses of Gabrielle's sleeping mind. Slowly she allowed the realization that someone was in the room come to the front of her thoughts.
She squinted as she leaned up on her elbow. "Who's there?" Her voice was groggy.
"Skye?" She was having a hard time making her mind accept any solid thoughts, but she knew that Skye in her room wasn't normal.
"Yes, and Terra."
Her eyes adjusted. "Spencer, I know you're here." Gabrielle could see his outline in the dark.
"Yes, your Highness."
"What's going on?" Candace turned over to see what the commotion was. Seeing Skye there unnerved her. Skye and Terra had been in the camp when she and Gabrielle had left. There was no way they could have gotten there without help. This was serious. She could feel it.
"I don't know. Here. Put a shirt on." Gabrielle handed her a cotton top then slipped one over her own head. She pulled it down and swung her feet over the side of the tall pallet.
"Skye, what's wrong?" Candace noted the swollen eyes on the young woman. She knew for sure something was wrong and it put a tight ball of fear in the pit of her stomach.
"Nothing is wrong, Miss Candace. Not really." Skye shook her blonde head trying not to cry.
"It's the 'not really' part that concerns me." Gabrielle stood up.
"We are leaving for a little while." Terra decided not to give the Regent's a total heart attack.
"Where are you going?" Candace scooted across the bed and threw her legs over. She put her feet to the floor to stand but found her fear was making it hard for her to gain her balance. She cleared her throat as she gained her composure. She tested her legs again and found her ability to stand.
Skye looked back to Spencer then back to the petite blonde women. "We are going to the Fates to take the office of Time."
"YOU'RE WHAT?" Taking a step forward, both women spoke at once.
Terra flinched. "Don't be angry."
Candace caught herself. "We're not angry, Terra. It's just kind of a shock."
"If you think about it, Candace, they are perfect." She beamed at them. "How long will you be gone?"
Skye was getting tired of crying but this time she was devastated. Candace had taught her how to love now she had to let go of some of the love she had gained. She sobbed freely. Her arms sought the comfort of the first woman who had ever held her. Candace grasped her tightly. This wasn't just a quick trip down the road.
"Sweetheart, how long will you be gone?" Candace didn't want to get all emotional over nothing.
Spencer answered for the girls who could no longer control their grief. "In your time it will be no longer than a few days."
"In our time? What about their time?" Gabrielle put a protective arm around Terra.
"It will be years to them before they are able to return to you, and then it will only be for a short time. They are giving up their lives to follow their path." Spencer knew the sacrifice these women were making. The one thing they would have forever, though, was each other.
"Years? My God, Skye." Candace pulled the tender young woman closer. Her own tears welled up then silently fell down her cheeks. "Are you sure?"
The blonde head nodded. She whispered her confirming answer. "Yes."
Terra fell into Gabrielle, almost knocking the smaller woman over. The strong Regent was able to hold her own as she clasped the tall assassin to her. "Terra, it's going to be OK." Gabrielle cried along with the rest of the group. Her small hands framed Terra's strong face. "Terra, listen." She wiped errant tears away with her thumbs. "You are strong and brave. You can do this better than anyone ever has."
"Miss Gabrielle, I.I.I don't know." She tried to articulate through her tears. Her head dropped.
Gabrielle made Terra lift her eyes. A firm emerald gaze held Terra's attention. "I know you, Terra. You are ready. We love you." She guided Terra down to her. She placed a soft kiss on her forehead then one on each cheek. She leaned in and placed a soft kiss on her lips. "Be safe, sweetheart." She released the tall woman and stepped back with tears streaming down her cheeks.
Candace kissed the top of Skye's head. She mirrored Gabrielle's actions with Terra. The innocent face of the young girl was held in the Regent's hands. Two sets of teary green eyes stared at one another for long moments. There were no words to be spoken that could ever convey the thoughts in their hearts. Skye felt every emotion that ran through her dear friend. Skye took a deep breath and stepped back with a nod. "I love you, too. We both do. Good-bye, Miss Candace. We will see you soon."
All the blonde singer could do was nod. She would see them soon, but not soon enough for her.
Gabrielle reached for Skye, pulling her in. She whispered words of encouragement in her delicate ear. Skye nodded then stepped back. "Come on, Terra. We have work to do."
Terra took her hand. A knowing calm swept over her very being and she knew without doubt that they were doing the right thing. "Yes we do. Spencer?" She nodded at him. The room filled with light and they were gone.
Candace folded her arms and hugged herself against the sorrow in her soul. It was always hard to let them grow up, but the two girls that had come to join them had grown into competent young women who would literally change the world.
Gabrielle put her arm around Candace. The singer's head found a resting place on the bard's shoulder. Gabrielle's lips met the blonde head with a soft whisper. "I miss them already."
"Me too, Gab. Me, too." She pulled from the embrace and returned to bed. Gabrielle watched her climb under the covers knowing there was nothing she could do to fill the void left by them. It was going to be a long night.
"Do you wish
"To accept the
" and all the powers
"That are held.."
Terra took a deep breath and looked to her wife. Skye nodded at her. "We do."
"Give us the.."
Spencer took a very long look at the instrument that had been his life for such a very long time. His hand held the Glass up. He sighed as the weight of it was taken from him. He smiled his sister and her lover. "I'll see you both very soon." He stepped to them. Skye hugged him sweetly then placed a kiss on his cheek. He turned to Terra. "You know I have missed you for a very long time. I guess we were never meant to grow up together."
"We will one day, Spencer. I promise." She pulled her brother in to her.
His enormous arms wrapped around her. Now it was his turn to shed tears. "I love you, Ter. I know you don't know me from Adam, but I love you." He squeezed her tightly
"I love you, ya big bully. I'll get to know you. OK?"
He released her then stepped back. "Yeah?"
"Yeah." She winked at him.
"Skye? Love her." The directive was from his very soul.
"I will, Spencer. You can count on it." She grinned her famous grin at him.
"thank you for
"your service to.."
"IS there anything you.."
He thought for a minute. "Can I save my wish for later?"
"As you will."
"Thanks. See you guys! Study hard."
"Good-bye, Spencer. Thank you for everything." Terra smiled at him.
He blushed then nodded at the three forms of Fate. The cavern lit up and the man who was Time was gone.
The two women followed their teachers to their destiny.
To be cont........
Return to The Bard's Corner