Love Burns Bright
by StarWarrior (Rie)

Disclaimers: It's my story...but as everyone already knows I did not create Gabrielle & Xena. I am borrowing them though...after all they beg to borrowed...and as the title suggests it's a love story between the Warrior and the if you don't like this sort a thing - go read something else.

Xena smiled at the woman cradled in her arms. Gabrielle was truly the greatest gift she'd ever received. A sigh of contentment escaped from her lips. Misty green eyes blinked lazily. "Hi." The soft dulcet tones of Gabrielle's voice sent a shiver down her spine. "Hi yourself." She lifted one hand and caressed the soft cheek of her lover. "How are you doing this morning?"

"Better." She cuddled closer. "Much better." She let one hand trail along Xena's side. "Thank you."

Xena chortled. "For what?"

"For coming back for me." Gabrielle's hand continued to play along Xena's body.

The words brought back the memory of their fight. She shuddered and pulled away sitting on the edge of the bed. "I never should have left you."

"You didn't." Gabrielle shook her head. "I left you." She placed a hand on her lover's back. "I'm sorry."

"Sorry?!" Xena refused to look at the smaller woman.. "For speaking the truth?" She dropped her head forward and shuffled her feet. "I was…I am a killer." She tugged at her hair anguish in her voice. "You deserve so much more than me." Another shudder ran through her back and she felt the hand caress her. She rose to her feet. "Don't. You were right to leave me. I was wrong to let you do it in the middle of the woods. I should have made sure you arrived in the village."

"I keep telling you you're not responsible for me." Gabrielle said angrily. "I chose to follow you." Now she rose from the bed and wrapping the blanket around her naked body stalked the tall warrior. "Me. She tapped her chest with her free hand. "I came after you and you had very clearly warned me against just that. I continued to follow you…even after you left Amphipolis without me. I-"

"Stop it!" Xena growled. "I am responsible for you." She turned and stared with ice blue eyes at the bard. "I accepted that responsibility when I let you stay with me." Her eyes blazed with passion. "If I had sent you home you'd never have felt such pain…never would have been forced to make that kind of decision."

Gabrielle's voice was ragged. "I'd make the same decision again." She said, her face tight with suppressed fear. "I love you!" She closed her eyes. "And no matter what you say…what you think…I know you are worthy of my love." She stopped behind the proud warrior. "And if I have to kill again to save you I will."

Xena squeezed her tightly closed eyes. How could Gabrielle say that...believe that? "I'm not worth it." She took a deep breath. "You shouldn't…" Xena shook her head. "I…" How to explain? "You should have a home…family around you that love you…safety…friends" She whirled around and opened her eyes, piercing Gabrielle with the cold fire that burned in the blue steel. "Not me." Her voice dropped to a whisper. "All I can give you is danger, strife, pain and worry, no home and most nights not even a soft bed." She pulled her eyes away from the sea green with difficulty. "You deserve so much more."

"No." Gabrielle shook her head. "That's not true." Sorrow filled her voice. "You gave me freedom…freedom to be myself. Adventure and first hand knowledge of people and places that without you I could only have dreamt of. Friends from all walks of life…if I stayed home in Potedaia I never would have met Hercules and Iolaus, Salmoneus, the Amazons, Autolycus, Acacia, Centaurs and Solon, and all the others. As for home…home is where those you love are and that means home is wherever you are." She reached out and placed her hand on Xena's cheek. "Don't shut me out." She pleaded tears shining in her eyes.

Xena looked down at her beautiful friend and shook her head in wonder. She reached out and brushed the red gold hair back. "Why?" She whispered in awe. "Why love someone like me? Don't you know you could have anyone you want? Everywhere we've ever gone you've left a trail of broken hearts."

"If I can have anyone I want?" She focused her entire will into her words. "Can I have you?" She stepped closer, moving her hand off Xena's cheek and circling the taller woman's neck, pulling her head towards her. "Forever?"

Xena hesitated fighting the power of the smaller woman's hand on her neck. "No." She let the word slip, felt the hand drop away from her neck and turning saw the light fade from Gabrielle's eyes and a pain like that of a sword thrusting into her side shot through her body. As Gabrielle turned away in defeat Xena leaped forward. "No." She spun the smaller woman towards her and Gabrielle fell into her arms. Confusion in her eyes. "I don't have the strength to let you go. I need you too much…" She bent her head and claimed the soft red lips with her own. They parted beneath hers as rose petals opening to sunlight.

A whimper of delight ran through Gabrielle and the kiss deepened. Xena's arms circled the small waist and lifted the little woman up, dragging her into an embrace that promised a life full of love. Gabrielle let herself melt into the body of the woman she loved. Floating. She was floating. "Don't leave me."

"Never." Xena's words fell from lips barely away from Gabrielle's and her warm breath was like a caress. Gabrielle closed her eyes in ecstasy. "I'll never let you go again." She nuzzled Gabrielle and walked to the bed. Gently she laid the bard down.

Looking into eyes of cerulean blue, Gabrielle raised a hand to touch a strand of silky black hair. She licked suddenly dry lips. She could feel the heat of her lover's body, the faint musky scent that emanated from Xena filled her nostrils and passion darkened her eyes.

Xena's mouth had a sensual curve as she returned her gaze and Gabrielle melted beneath a surge of wanton longing. The blood was rushing madly through her veins and her breathing was shallow and rapid. Her lips parted and the warrior princess laid claim to them. Thrusting her tongue deep into the cavern of her mouth. The hot wet moistness of it a welcome home for Xena's questing tongue.

"When you look at me like that I can't keep my hands off you." She muttered thickly, burying her head into the golden hair that was strewn all along the bard's neck. She put her hand against her neck, her thumb moving rhythmically against the sensitive skin below her ear. She leaned down and nipped gently at the exposed skin.

Gabrielle couldn't stand it. She reached up and wound her arms tightly around her neck, and then Xena's mouth was on hers, hard and firm and hungrily demanding. The weight of Xena's body on hers was not a pain, it was a sensual pleasure, and her lips parted involuntarily while her whole body yielded to the throbbing pleasure she brought.

Xena pulled roughly at the blanket that held Gabrielle's swollen globes from her eyes. A growl rumbled up from the depths of her throat as the blanket fell away and the treasure beneath was exposed. She lifted eyes darkened with unbridled passion to her bards and smiled ferally when her eyes encountered emerald orbs filled with as much passion. She dropped her eyes back to the feast that awaited her and opening her mouth fastened onto the left mound sucking and nipping at the skin all along the edge of the nipple until Gabrielle moaned loudly, then she grabbed the nipple, bit down lightly and suckled like a new born baby, all the while playing with her bard's right breast with her fingers. Alternating between rubbing the nipple between her thumb and finger and rolling the firm flesh around with the palm of her hand.

Gabrielle moaned beneath the loving pressure. She pulled Xena's head down and arched her hips up. "Please, I need you." Her hands tore at the shift that kept Xena's body from her sight.

A low chuckle ran through Xena's body. She sat up and her eyes glinted with desire as Gabrielle reached to pull her back. "Oh no my love." She caught the bard's hand and nipped and suckled each finger lovingly. She sat back and slowly sensuously lifted her shift up and over her head tossing it across the room, enjoying the sharp in drawn breath Gabrielle released at the sight of her naked body. "Now." She leaned down and gathered Gabrielle up in her arms, twisting to land on the bed with her love on top of her. She ran her hands along Gabrielle's sides. "So soft…so warm…I love how you feel."

"I love the way you touch me." Gabrielle gasped the words. Her own hands running up and down Xena's body. A smile lit her face as Xena moaned and her hands stopped at the taut nipples. She pressed them between her fingers and Xena mimicked the movement. Gabrielle lay down and Xena pressed her body closer to hers. Gabrielle captured the warrior's nipple in her mouth and bit lightly grazing her teeth along the tip of the nipple and eliciting a loud moan from Xena. She smiled inward and let go of the nipple and began kissing and nibbling her way down the warrior's body.

Xena entangled her fingers in Gabrielle's hair and urged with moans and fingers Gabrielle downward. "More." She pleaded with her bard. "Oh yeah, right there." She moaned as Gabrielle parted her folds and slipped her tongue along the moist wetness she found there.

"Mmm…yum." Gabrielle said with a muffled voice and the warmth of her breath tickled Xena and she shuddered. Gabrielle smiled up at her and scooted along the hard body to capture the soft red lips with her own. "Love you." She murmured as her lips let go and she began her downward trek again.

Xena growled with frustration and gripped the back of Gabrielle's head. "No." She pulled the bard back towards her and flipped over trapping the small lithe body under her and kissing her hard and long. "I want to taste you." She bit down on Gabrielle's neck and sucked, rubbing her body against the bard's. She took small nibbles all along her shoulder and paused at her breast to pull and suck for a few moments…just long enough to cause Gabrielle to begin writhing uncontrollable.

A smile of pure delight crossed Xena's face and she licked at Gabrielle's bellybutton. A shudder ran through the bard's body and Xena laughed at the joy she brought her lover, but enough play. She moved herself over and rubbed her slick center along Gabrielle's thigh, seeking and finding the golden mound with her fingers. Slowly she parted the beloved folds, licking and nibbling her way to the center. She slid her tongue in deep and lapped the juices with enthusiasm. Gabrielle moaned loudly. Xena pulled back and slipped her fingers inside and began pumping slowly at first and slowly she moved her body along the bard's thigh in tandem with her hand.

Gabrielle pulled the warrior's body closer her hand alternating between rubbing and pulling at her back. "Xeeeeeeennnnaaaaa…." The name was drawn from Gabrielle as Xena began squeezing the small hard nub at the core of Gabrielle's center. She moaned and rubbed herself along Gabrielle harder, faster.

"Yes." She murmured as Gabrielle fastened her mouth onto Xena's nipple and sucked hard it was all Xena needed to go over the edge and she too let loose with a cry of her own. Then silence except for the irregular breathing of the two women.

"Forever?" Gabrielle whispered the words as soon as she managed to catch her breath. The tenseness in her voice conveyed her fear.

Xena's breath caught in her throat. Forever. She said silently tasting the word. Rolling it over her tongue. Can I deal with that thought Can I deal with anything less? It needs to be. "Forever." She agreed.

Gabrielle sagged with relief. She let out a long breath and cuddled close to her love. "Thank you."

"For what?" Xena laughed.

"Loving me."

"Likewise." Xena pulled her closer and tucked Gabrielle's head into the nook between her neck and shoulder. "Now let's get some sleep."

"Hmmm," Gabrielle kissed her. "Good idea." She murmured drowsily, basking in the warmth of Xena's love.

Love Burns Bright Part II

Time shifted slowly and night past into morning. As Apollo moved his chariot across the skies Xena woke and remembered the night before. She lay quiet eyes closed and relished the memories. Long minutes past. Time ceased to mean anything. She lay wrapped in lethargy with Gabrielle tucked safely in her arms. She listened as the bard's breathing slowly changed. The bard was half awake half asleep. Xena played with Gabrielle's hair, relishing the silken feel of her lover. She leaned into her bard and took a deep breath. The smell of the bard caused a shudder to run through her body. Gods she was already turned on again. "I can't get enough of you." She breathed deep. Floral herbs that Gabrielle used to cleanse herself filled her senses and she nuzzled her neck. "I love you." She nibbled at her neck lazily.

Gabrielle grinned but her eyes remained closed. She moved deeper into the warrior's embrace. "I love you too." She moved her neck encouraging Xena to nuzzle deeper. "Mmm. That feels great, but don't we need to get on the road?"

"No." Xena leaned on one arm and caressed Gabrielle's cheek "Today we don't have to do anything you don't want to do." She smiled as Gabrielle's eyes opened. "The rest of the world can wait."

"Really?" Her voice had a distinct tremor in it and her eyes were wide with shock.

Xena's lips turned up in the slight half smile that Gabrielle loved. "Yes." She bent over and licked Gabrielle's nose. "Whatever you want." She shrugged. "To make up for the last day."

"Then I want to stay right here." Gabrielle smiled impishly.

"In this village?" Xena asked puzzled.

"Yes." Gabrielle smiled. "In this village. In this inn. In this bed."

Xena grinned. "In this bed? All day.?" Her eyebrows twitched suggestively.

"Yup." Gabrielle's smile widened. "That okay with you?"

"Most assuredly." Xena leaned over and captured the bard's mouth. "Of course you realize that you'll be too tired to walk tomorrow if we stay in this bed all day long."

"I'm counting on it." Gabrielle laughed. "I've discovered that there are advantages to riding."

Xena leaned over and effectively stopped the bard from talking. When she lifted her mouth the dazed expression on Gabrielle's face more than made up for any loss of sleep the bard had caused her.

Gabrielle twisted in her lover's arms until she rested half on top of the long, lean body of her warrior. "The things you do to me." She murmured licking her lips lazily as she lowered her head feeling the warmth of Xena's breath on her face. She felt good. Touching her felt good. The tender kiss slipped quickly into desire as she felt Xena's tongue make a passionate assault inside her mouth. The hands cradling her bottom lifted her possessively bringing her closer to those lips as her mouth left hers, slipped down her cheek and lingered at the hollow of her neck. Xena's lips moved down to the top of her breasts and she moaned softly. Her lips grazed her nipples and she arched into the warrior. Her body reacting with as surge of yearning. Her hands roamed restlessly over Xena's back. Gabrielle pressed her breasts against the warrior reveling in the feel.

She slid her hands to the side and her fingers followed the contours of the warrior's body. An ache spread from her midsection and blood pulsed heavily in her veins. She moaned as Xena's fingers found the center of her breasts, insistently stroking and gently rolling the taut peaks between thumbs and forefingers.

Xena's mouth licked at the faint dew of perspiration between her breasts. She said, "Xena," on a long exhalation of air, shuddering beneath her touch. She brought her mouth to the taller woman's throat, seeking the warm intimate hollows. Settling in to suckle and nip to her heart's content as Xena's hand roamed lower.

In a single heartbeat Xena flipped the bard over resting her heavier body against the smaller one. Her passion fully aroused. The warrior's mouth clamped onto Gabrielle's in a bruising kiss. The bard moaned and pressed into the warrior. Xena's hands slid across her waist and down her flat stomach to the silkiness between her thighs and there they stayed, reaching, and stroking. Slowly she kissed her way down Gabrielle's body. Her tongue painting long swatches over her quivering flesh. Xena grinned and her tongue darted in and out of all the small crevices of her lover's body working it's way ever closer to her center.

She pulled back and knelt between Gabrielle's lags pulling her legs over her shoulders and drinking deeply of the perfume that was Gabrielle, before burying her head in the musky delight. Lapping up the juices that flowed for her.

Gabrielle shook violently, plumbing to depths she'd only dreamed of before. "Xena!" She breathe in an agony of excitement.

"Yes love." She moved, sliding up her body and holding her close, kissing and caressing the smaller woman until the shudders slowed. She was discovering in herself a greed she'd never suspected. The more Gabrielle gave her the more she wanted. She wanted to extract every tremor of response, every impulse she was capable of, every drop of feeling that the young woman had. She wanted to unleash all the passion that bard showed in her stories and she wanted to tame the wildness that raged in her…

Giving the smaller woman no time to recover from the agonizing pleasure of her tongue she slid two fingers into the sensitized flesh, moving her own wet slickness sensuously up and down Gabrielle's thigh.

Gabrielle stiffened and gasped as subsiding sensation spiraled and rocketed upward again. She pulled the warrior closer to her. Her hands clasped Xena's bottom and she moved her leg bringing her into closer contact with the older woman's hot throbbing center. Xena's hand pumped slowly and steadily in and out of her bringing her closer and closer to the ultimate release. She wanted to do the same. She lowered her hand and pushed it between her thigh and Xena's leg.

Xena mewed in disappointment. Gabrielle smiled at the noise and crooned encouragingly as her hand slid past the dark curly mound and parted the folds to slide into the warrior's wet moist center. Xena's mew of disappointment changed to a gasp of delight. And the two women found a rhythm of their own, climbing to heights unheard of, and the crescendo as their names mingled in one cry was music to their ears and they lay in splendid release wrapped in their sure love of one another.

Xena tilted her head with a finger under her chin and took her mouth in a kiss that left her pliant and sighing. She watched as her eyes feathered open She looked at her with happiness shining in her eyes and sighed into her shoulder. For a moment they were quiet, enjoying the undemanding closeness.

Love Burns Bright Part III

Rumble…grrrrumble. Gabrielle grabbed her stomach.

Xena laughed. "Is that a hint." She opened one eye to peek at the smaller woman.

Gabrielle let go of her stomach and smiled up at her lover. "No." She said with a small snarl. "I don't wanna be hungry." She pouted. "I was comfortable." She laid a hand across the rock hared stomach she'd been rubbing moments before. Smiling as Xena stretched and her muscles rippled beneath her touch.

"I'm sorry love, but I don't think you have much choice." She sat up. "Besides I really need to get up any way."

"Tch." Gabrielle's face fell. "But you said we could do what ever I wanted to." Her eyes sparked angrily. "And I didn't mean I wanted to stay in bed alone all day."

Xena bit back a chuckle and gently gathered the bard into her arms kissing her. "No love," She shook her head. "I didn't imagine you did." She rose and lay her lover down, "But," She bestowed another kiss on the woman before releasing her, "I meant I need to relieve myself." She smiled as Gabrielle blushed. "You stay here." She ordered tapping her nose as she rose and slipped a loose tunic on over her head. "I'll be right back."

Gabrielle watched silently as Xena padded over to the door and left. She shook her head at her foolishness. She stretched, relishing the feel of her muscles rippling, the slight aches from laying in bed diminishing. Quickly she rose and stretched arms over head and touched her toes, loosening her muscles. She padded to the window and looked out at the small village watching the people go about their business and a sigh of contentment slipped from her. She watched as a small, light haired very pregnant woman retrieved water from the town's cistern, dragging a child with her. If not for Xena that could be me. She shuddered at the thought and stepped back from the window. The bed looked so lonely without Xena in it. She flopped restlessly down on it.

A loud bang on the door caused her to jump to her feet. Grabbing her Staff she stepped to the door. A second more impatient bang and this time a familiar voice calling her name.

"Gabrielle! Open the door!"

"Xena?" Gabrielle flung open the door.

Xena paused mouth open. Slowly she licked at her teeth and her eyes moved caressingly over the bard's body. "I think I just got hungry."

Gabrielle looked down at her naked body and blushed. "Get in here." She hissed. Xena slowly walked in causing Gabrielle to take a step back with each step forward she made. "Ahm." Gabrielle glanced nervously at the predatory look on Xena's face and then at the tray in her hands. "Ah, breakfast? Great! I'm Starving."

"I know." Xena raised her eyebrows. "That's why I went and got this." She kicked the door closed and stepped closer to Gabrielle. Laughing as the young woman bumped into the bed and fall onto it. "But I just got hungry for something else." Carefully she laid the tray onto the table and turning stalked toward the bed, her eyes never leaving those of the bard.

Gabrielle shivered in delight. The look in Xena's eyes enough to get her blood pumping. She watched as Xena stopped only when she stood at the edge of the bed and pressing her legs against Gabrielle's she slowly licked her lips with the tip of her tongue. "I'm thirsty." She reached behind her and without looking she picked up the bowl of cut fruit. "I want some fruit juice." She squeezed the melon and the juice dripped onto Gabrielle's breasts, the juice running down the firm mounds into her valley the lines racing to pool in her navel. Xena's nostrils flared and her breath quickened. Her eyes never leaving those of Gabrielle's she leaned down and licked the juice out. "Mmm." She licked her lips. "Better, but I'm still thirsty." She leaned forward and licked at the quick drying trails of juice.

Gabrielle gasped. She writhed beneath Xena's tongue. A moan tore from her throat. Xena wrapped her tongue around one sticky nipple and slowly pulled it into her mouth. Gently she licked at the hardened nipple, and using her tongue rolled it around inside her mouth, until all the juice was gone. Smiling she lifted her face. "I feel much better now." She touched Gabrielle's cheek, slowly rubbing the back of her fingers along her jawline bringing her thumb to trace her lips.

Gabrielle opened her mouth snapping her teeth in an attempt to catch the thumb.

Xena laughed. "No. No." She admonished her lover, tapping the side of her face lightly before moving her hand slowly down her body to flick at the nipple she'd played with earlier, instantly causing it to harden. She lowered her head and licked at the other nipple. Rolling and playing with the first one as she pulled and suckled on the second.

Gabrielle moaned bringing her hand up to pull Xena closer.

"Still no." Xena grabbed the hand, kissing each finger before entwining the fingers within hers and pulling the hand up over Gabrielle's head. Effectively stopping her from touching and yet accomplishing Gabrielle's goal which was to bring the taller woman closer to her and as Xena's body came within reach of her mouth she opened her mouth and grasped a nipple pulling it into her mouth. Xena gasped in surprise and pleasure sinking into the bard for a moment, before pulling away. "You're not supposed to touch."

Gabrielle mewed in disappointment. "Xena." She protested, twisting in an attempt to free herself. "Please. I need….oh…" Her voice trailed off as Xena bit down on her nipple.

"Mine." Xena growled. "All mine." She buried her face in Gabrielle's chest, nipping, sucking, and licking in a feeding frenzy.

Gabrielle writhed beneath the loving torture. "Yes!" She cried out unable to do anything else. "Yours."

Xena laughed. And moved down her bard. She kissed and licked and nibbled her way down to the golden patch between Gabrielle's thighs. She drew in a big breath closing her eyes as the heady scent of Gabrielle filled her. An animalistic noise erupted from her throat and she buried her head in the bard. Lapping, sucking, and nibbling at the succulent flesh eliciting cries and moans of ecstasy from Gabrielle, who gripped the blankets and tossed her head from side to side.

"Xeeeennnnaaaaa…" She cried. "More. Please. I need more."

Xena heard the cries as though from a distance and increased her pace. Sucking at the hard little nub and squeezing her breasts. She slipped one of her legs over the bards and begun rubbing up and down in tandem with her tongue's action on the bard's sex.

"Oh gods! Yes!" Gabrielle's head whipped back and her body arched up. "Oh…oh…oh…ah…aah…ah …aaahhh."

Xena continued to lap at Gabrielle's juices until her own orgasm came, then she pulled her head up and laid her head on top of Gabrielle. Xena collapsed on top of her lover her body's shuddering communicating itself to the bard who clasped her lover tightly, smiling.

"Gaia but I love you." She murmured the words unable to do anything else.

Xena kissed the bard's stomach and forced herself to rise and climb up her lover's body. "I love you too." She lay down and pulled Gabrielle close. "I think breakfast can wait." She yawned.

"Mmm." Gabrielle closed her eyes and wrapped her arm around Xena's waist, basking in the afterglow of their lovemaking.

Xena rested her chin on top of Gabrielle's. She closed her eyes. Perfect. The thought ran around in her head as she drifted off to sleep. Life doesn't get any better than this.

Love Burns Bright Part IV

Gabrielle woke after only a few minutes sleep. She eased herself out of the bed, slipped a tunic over her head and padded silently out the door.

Xena smiled wryly, opening one eye to watch as her lover disappeared. A soft chuckle escaped and a warmth filled her. To think that she'd finally found someone that loved her enough try not to disturb her. As if anyone moving in close vicinity to her wouldn't instantly wake her. She closed her eye and waited patiently for her bard to return.

Gabrielle eased the door open, smiling softly as she saw the still sleeping warrior. She paused by the bedside table and hungrily wolfed down a bowl of the now cold mush…still the honey Xena had added to it made it tasty. She licked the sweetness off her lips as she pulled the tunic off and slid into bed her eyes twinkling. It wasn't often she managed to catch the warrior princess sleeping.

She hitched herself up on one elbow to look lovingly at her partner. Gaia, but she's gorgeous. Her breath caught in her throat. She lifted a hand to touch Xena's face, gently stroking her cheek, catching a silky strand of dark hair and tucking it lovingly behind an ear. Her eyes soft and misty she swallowed and taking the opportunity traced the ear lobe with one finger, down to the strong jaw line. She bent down and bestowed a kiss on Xena's eyelids, cheeks, the tip of her nose, and as she laid claim to her partner's lips she felt an answering pressure and blue eyes opened to stare at her with a passion that caused her to break the kiss and gasp for breath.

Xena pulled Gabrielle's head back to her lips. Gabrielle smiled as the kiss ended and rolled onto the warrior. She bent her head and kissed her lover on the chin, before moving southward, laying claim to as much of the warrior's skin as she could, kissing her way down to her breasts. She suckled at her like a greedy infant, drawing her nipples deep into her mouth, grazing them with impassioned teeth, then tonguing them.

She listened as a sigh burst uncontrolled from Xena's lips. She abandoned her breasts to slide her body down the battle hardened body, reveling in the hard muscular feel of her, licking and sucking at her navel and sliding her hand between Xena's thighs the warriors hands on her head urging her onward.

The warm moisture she felt oozing down Xena's thigh's caused a similar reaction in her. Her hand wasn't enough. She scrambled down the long ,lean, hard body, rushing to uncover the wet, glistening jewel that her hand had lightly touched. The intoxicating aroma that filed her senses as she neared the apex brought a growl to her lips and she attacked the warrior, pushing her way between thighs of marble tearing none to gently at the them in her eagerness to harvest the fruit that lay hidden beneath the glistening pink folds. Her breath was raspy as she paused to blow gently. The slight wind eliciting a moan from the warrior who urged her to continue her quest. And as though to make up for her earlier forcefulness the bard gently played with the warrior's folds. Deliberately she moved at a leisurely pace. Slowly, bit by bit, she pulled the folds back, wetting her lips in anticipation of the feast she was about to enjoy. Until finally the fruits of her labor lay open to her eyes, and what seemed like a lifetime of torture to the writhing warrior ended as Gabrielle delved into Xena's sex. Her shoveling tongue bringing the warrior to the edge.

The silence was broken, "Gaaaaaabbbbrrrrriiiieeeeeelllleeee!!!!!!!!!" Xena's body arched forward. Gabrielle hung on, her face deeply embedded in the warrior's ass. When Xena's last spasm ended Gabrielle moved. She slithered up her lover and lay cradled in the safety of Xena's arms. Xena kissed the top of her bard's head. "Thank you."

Gabrielle rubbed Xena's belly absentmindedly, a shy smile on her face. "Enjoyed it?' Her voice held only the slightest of doubt.

Xena opened one eye and pulled Gabrielle's face toward her. Her brow crinkled. "Do you have to ask?" Her voice pure amazement. "I love you." She enunciated each word carefully. "You do things to me…for me that drive me out of my mind." She cupped the bard's head lovingly in the palm of one of her hands. Gabrielle closed her eyes enjoying the sensations just Xena's hand was causing.

Xena smiled. "Gabrielle?" Her voice was husky and low. "I'm on to you my bard." The smile in her tone took away any fears Gabrielle might have harbored.

"I don't know what you mean." Gabrielle said pulling away from the warrior's hand and curling into the warrior's shoulder.

"Really?" Xena purred, moving into full seductive mode. "Two can play games my love…I assure you I will win any game you choose to play." She let her hand trail lazily just barely touching the bard's skin and yet it set her afire.

She arched into the touch purring.

Xena pulled back. "You don't need to play a game to get me to touch you." The blue eyes danced with pure devilment, the bewitching tones of her voice causing a sudden ache deep in Gabrielle's mons area. She ran her eyes up and down the bard's lithe body, running her tongue over the tip of her teeth.

Gabrielle reached for Xena, but the warrior grabbed her hands laughing. "No." A twinkle in her eyes. "You're going to have to ask me for what you want." The tongue licked at her lips. "And you can't touch."

Gabrielle whimpered in distress.

"All you have to do is admit you want it…want me so bad you that you go into your bardic persona to play on my senses." She wiggled her eyebrows. "Come on…you know you do."

Gabrielle blanched. She bit into her lower lip and set her mouth into a pout. "How can you say that?" Her eyes took on a hurt expression and her eyes got misty.

Xena chuckled. "Oh you are good." She lifted one hand and laid it along the bard's cheek. "Admit it." She said breathlessly, her eyes raking the bard, holding her lover still.

The green eyes widened, her breath shortened, she swallowed. "Xena." She whispered. "I…" Her lips kept drying and she licked her lips again and again. "I'm ravenous..." She admitted shyly. Her mouth watering. "…for you." Her eyes turned upward and she blushed. "I…I…I…guess I'm still a little…" She stopped unable to continue.

Xena smiled alluringly. "That'll do." She leaned over the bard running her fingers along Gabrielle's face and down her side, sending tiny shivers of delight through the bard. "Never doubt that you move me beyond any of my expectations…beyond anything anyone has ever done…for me…to me." She wrapped her arms around the bard and pulled her into a close embrace. Her hot breath brushing sensuously against Gabrielle's ear. "And I intend to return the favor." Her lips captured Gabrielle's.

Gabrielle melted into her lover. The hot searing kiss burning into her center. Her body melting into a pool of lave as Xena moved her lips from Gabrielle's lips onto her jaw, her neck, and down the valley, fixating on one perfect mound to suck on the quick hardening nipple. Gabrielle squirmed under the assault. Her body moving in tandem with that of her lover.

Xena licked and nipped her way down Gabrielle's body. Determined to bring her to the edge and hold her there as long as possible, she continued to hold Gabrielle's hands captive. Gradually Xena moved her hand southward, her fingers spread wide, and her touch as light as a feather, causing the smaller woman to twitch uncontrollably. "Tell me what you want." She whispered her hand playing with the soft, curly hair at the bard's center. Her own sex aching with desire. "Do you like this?" She moved her hand. "Or this?"

Gabrielle moaned. Her wetness dripping down her thighs. She pulled trying to free her hands. She needed to touch. "Xena." She pleaded.

"Yes?" Her eyes sparkled with the blue of new cut gems. Her voice sweet as honey, as she slid a finger along Gabrielle's wetness.

"Uh…oh ya…" Her breath came in quick little gasps and she clenched her fists. "Yes." She managed to cry her breath catching in her throat.

Xena's lips curled up in pleasure. "Yes? Do you mean you like this? Or this?" She moved her hands again enjoying the feel of the bard's skin…her firm flesh closing in around her finger. "Hmmm? Which is it?"

"Both." She managed to spit the word out.

"What else?" She pulled her hand away and moved down Gabrielle's body. "This?" She placed herself between the bard's legs and licked once at the inside of her thigh.

Gabrielle jumped. Her insides throbbed. "Oh yeah." She moaned. "Love it."

"More?" Came the chuckle.

"Please." She breathed moaning and Xena's loving assault continued.

Gabrielle alternated between gasps and sighs as Xena nibbled and suckled at her flesh, her body arching upward. Xena her teasing forgotten obliged her lover, licking up and down the length of her slit, before her tongue swirled past the puffy red folds eliciting cries of ecstasy from Gabrielle.

Time ceased to have meaning their fire burned out of control. Words were left behind. Sighs mingled with gasps, whimpers, and cries of passion filled the room. Together the pleasure intensified until waves of pleasure overtook them and they spiraled upward as flames caught by the wind, wrapped in each other's embrace. The waves came once twice three times before Xena moved her tongue from Gabrielle's hot throbbing sex and replaced it with her hand. Her fingers slid in and took over continuing the exquisite torture as she slid upward to capture the bard's lips with her own. She straddled Gabrielle, her own wet, throbbing center pushing into the bard's thigh. A moan escaped from her throat as the two women found a new pattern to move to.

Gabrielle's head rolled back and she writhed under her lover. Xena grasped her nipple and sucked as hard as she could. Gabrielle moaned arching upward thrusting with her hips.

Xena gasped. Her mouth loosening it's hold on Gabrielle's breast. The sharp shot of pleasure that ran up into her center from Gabrielle's leg unbearable. She shuddered and collapsed. Her hand shooting deeper into the bard as she fell forward. Gabrielle's muscles clenched unconsciously and she screamed her release her arms clasping the warrior closer.

Xena and Gabrielle lay entangled in each other, sweaty, breath ragged, and twin smiles on their faces. "So any doubts now?"

Gabrielle smiled wearily. "No doubts." She placed her lips on Xena's throat snuggling in closer. "No more…no way…no how…"

"Good." Xena closed her eyes, her hands playing lightly with Gabrielle's back as she waited for her lover to drift off to sleep. She felt the bard shift to sleep and stopped her hand. "So lucky." She murmured to the sleeping woman. "So very lucky you decided to follow me." She kissed the top of her head. "I only hope it lasts." She shuddered as the fear ran up her spine and shaking her head threw the fears away. "No, nothing is going to mar this. We belong together and I won't let anything interfere." Turning she clasped the bard closer molding them together and drifted into the past.

Love Burns Bright Part V

Xena's dream turned dark. "No." She moaned in despair. "Gabrielle…come back!" Her hands reached out and touched only empty sheets. "Noo!" The cry sounded again. She was lost in the woods. Gabrielle had told her she couldn't live with it any more. 'Easy for you to walk away from what I did.' She'd cried. 'You're a killer. I'm not!' And then the young bard had walked away. It was true. She was nothing but a killer and Gabrielle despised that. Alone…with no one to care again…She tossed and turned moaning fearlessly in agony.

Gabrielle heard the noise and rushed back to her room. "Oh!" Her hand slapped at her mouth. Her eyes turned soft and misty. Xena lay twisted in a fetal position, the blankets twisted up and her hands clenched to her chest. "Xena?!" She exclaimed, rushing to the bed. "Oh my love. What happened?" She sat on the edge of the bed. Waking Xena could be dangerous. "Xena?" Tentatively she lifted a hand and laid it along the hard shoulder. She chewed nervously on her lower lip. "Xena?" She called again. "Please wake up." Tears filled her eyes and her voice was full of anguish.

Xena froze. A presence. An intruder. She shifted instantly to wakefulness. What? She shook her head trying to clear it of the dreaded nightmare. Gabrielle gone? She took a deep breath. She's here…not gone.

"Are you okay?" Gabrielle stroked the sweat soaked hair. "What caused this?" Gabrielle asked trembling with relief.

"Nightmare." Came the short reply, then a twitch of the shoulders. "I'm fine. Leave me alone."

Gabrielle startled by the comment pulled back in fear. "Xena?" She hesitated.

Xena closed her eyes. "I'm sorry." She drew in a deep breath. "I didn't mean to scare you." The image of Gabrielle walking away…the hateful words she said kept coming back to haunt her. She shuddered and hid her face in her blankets.

Gabrielle rubbed her hands through her hair. What was going on around here? When she'd left to get some hot water everything was fine. By the gods they'd just spent a night and half a day making love and now this. She chewed on her bottom lip. "Ahm, Xena?" She laid a hand on the warrior's back. "I'm gonna make a tea and I think we should talk when it's ready." She rose to her feet. "Okay?" She faltered when silence followed her to the fireplace. If Xena didn't agree there was no way they would get to the bottom of whatever caused her nightmare.

Xena listened to Gabrielle making preparations. She didn't know what to do. She heard the water being poured and knew that it was now or never. Could she face Gabrielle? She winced and the blood ran cold at the thought of Gabrielle leaving her again. "Okay." She rose to her feet and padded silently over to the fire. Her naked body glistening in the firelight. She accepted the mug and dropped down on the rug next to the bard. "Thanks." She took a sip, but refused to look at her.

Gabrielle waited a few minutes, her hands wrapped around the comforting mug of tea. She fought to look at the flames and not at the gorgeous body sitting next to her. This wasn't about her. It was about Xena and her pain. "What was it about?"

Xena swallowed. Her eyes got all misty and she blinked. "You." Her lips were dry. "I was dreaming about you."

Gabrielle frowned. "Me? And it was a nightmare? What happened?"

Xena took a deep breath. Her hands were trembling. She put the mug down and clasped her hands together tightly. "You left me…again." The last word was barely a whisper. Her heart pounded and she shook from the fear exposing her emotions was causing.

Gabrielle distressed by the pain she had caused Xena swore silently . Vexed with herself for allowing Xena's pain to continue she tried to find a way to convey the truth to the warrior. Her pain drew tears from her eyes. "I wouldn't."

Xena stilled her breath. "You have…more than once."

"I know." Gabrielle played with her fingers. "But that was before." She shrugged. "When I thought I was no more than a thorn in your side."

"A thorn?" Xena turned a look of pure astonishment on her face. "In my side?" She shook her head. "This from the woman who saved my life in my mother's tavern? The woman who insisted on following me when I threatened to send her home?" The unbelief shone brightly in the warrior's face.

Gabrielle looked away. "Ya, that one. The same one that always finds trouble, needs rescuing, almost got you killed more than once." She had a wounded look to her. "There were days that it seemed everything I did was wrong…from trying to start a fire to who I talked to." She kicked her feet. "You didn't need me. You made that clear early on. And I needed you…so I chose to run away. But life at the Academy didn't work. I needed to find a life of my own. I went home. I learned I didn't belong there. So I came back. Perdicus said he needed me…you said nothing…so I went with him." She took a deep breath intending to continue, but Xena stepped in.

Xena sat stunned. "Didn't need you?" Her voice a whisper. "I needed you so much it hurt constantly. But you were just a naive child…hero-worshipping…I never robbed the cradle and damned if I was gonna start with you. I needed to give you a chance to grow up. To make the decisions on your own…if I made them you'd never truly be you…I destroyed others that way…I wasn't willing to risk you." Her voice small and painfilled cut at Gabrielle's heart. "You were always free…I wasn't. You'd captured my heart in the fields where a slaver tried to capture you. From that moment on whatever you wanted from me was yours."

"But you kept trying to get me to leave." Gabrielle's frown deepened. "You said things…did things to make me hurt…to make me leave you."

"Ya," Xena shook her head. "I tried to save you….from me…the longer you stayed the harder it got." She stared into the fire and saw not the flames but a young girl on the verge of woman hood, blue peasant top and reddish skirt. Hair flowing free eyes defying the fates…"You were beautiful, trusting, and full of the wonder and hopes I'd lost." She shook her head. "I'd only get you killed if you stayed."

"So you set out to drive me away?" Gabrielle asked puzzled, watching the beloved head nod and a small grin formed. "But it didn't work." She stated. "I may have been confused and naive, but I knew I belonged with you and the fates kept finding a way to bring me back to your side." She reached out with trembling hand and turned the beloved face towards her. Forcing the wounded blue eyes to look into her emerald ones. "I'm not going anywhere. I'm sorry I hurt you…sorry for all the times I left…sorry for all the arguments we are bound to have in the future, but I am not sorry I love you." She took a deep breath and wet her lips. "I'm not sorry I killed that man in the woods the other day. I am sorry I took my pain out on you. If you'll have me I'll stay forever."

Xena listened in shock to her lover. Her heart pounding furiously. She really loves me? Really means to stay with me? It's not hero-worship? Do I dare believe? Can I believe anything else? Gaia help me I want to believe, but I am so frightened. "Hmph." Me the warrior princess frightened. Her eyes darkened with unshed fears and passion. She tried to move away, but the bard held her tight.

"Hmph?" Gabrielle sighed exasperated. "What the…? Xena?!" She demanded. "Look at me." She shook. "Don't run from this." She pleaded. "If we don't solve it now it's going to keep coming back to haunt us. We just had the most magnificent night of our - well of my life and if these fears and doubts can come up now what will happen if we have a bad day together? Please…let's get rid of all our fears for each other now, otherwise it could tear us apart forever."

Heart-sinking fear gripped the warrior. Alone! No more Gabrielle! That's what started this…she could live with every other type of rejection but not that one. Her words came rushing out. "I want to believe you…really I do. But too many times in the past I've been betrayed…by those I thought loved me…those I loved. I'm not sure I can trust again."

"I won't betray you." Gabrielle's tears fell. Tears for Xena's pain. "I couldn't. Betraying you would be akin to cutting my own heart out. Please believe in me…in us…I do."

The tears cut into her aching soul. They washed away the pain of loneliness. "I'm not sure I can, but I want to.

"Together we can do anything." Gabrielle chewed nervously at her lower lip. "I believe enough for both of us."

Xena's heart jumped. "Gabrielle…"

"I'm here love." She pulled the older woman close. Her hand pressing the warrior's face against her breast. "I'll always be here."

Xena's arms wrapped themselves around the smaller woman. She breathed in deep filling her mind with the herbal scent of her lover. "I don't know why you love me so, but I am glad you do." She kissed the soft neck. "I love you."

Gabrielle leaned into the kiss, relishing the feel of her lover's lips, her arms, and living in just the moment, past and present forgotten for now. She stroked the raven hair. "Together - forever."

"Forever." Xena repeated the words and felt her heart mend, just a little…the fear retreating, but not banished. She shoved it aside and concentrated on the woman in her arms.

Gabrielle smiled. A small victory won today. She pulled at the warrior's face, smiling beatifically at the warrior as their eyes met and lowered herself into the warrior's embrace, pushing the woman backwards until she lay full on top of the naked woman. Her hands rushed to touch everywhere. Her mouth trapping Xena's forcing the warrior's lips to part. She thrust her tongue into Xena's mouth. Her tongue a strong questing muscle tasting the warrior's mouth. She tasted faintly of honey and herbs. She licked at Xena's lips, and drew back to gaze at the woman she loved, before lowering herself to taste more.

Xena drew in an unsteady breath. Her arms still closed behind the bard's back moved down to the edge of her shift and with a low growl she pulled at the fabric ripping the shift away from the golden body that filled her with an ache so deep she thought it could never be filled.

Gabrielle kissed the sweet soft succulent flesh, working her way down to the firm mounds that rested beneath her own breasts. As she touched Xena she felt her own nipples pinch and tighten. Her tongue circled over her lips as she stared at her lover. The heat in Xena's eyes answering hers and then she lowered her head and their lips met. A pleasure so intense streaked through her and an intense heat filled her.

Xena was aware of a blissful ache. Her heart lurched…she needed this woman. Her heartbeat accelerated. She gripped the other woman's hands twisting them up and over her head pulling her breasts closer to her lips. She opened her mouth and the firm flesh fell into it. She sucked and nibbled at the mounds. She let go of the wrists and twisted around so she now lay on top of the bard. She clasped her waist thrusting her hips into the other woman.

Gabrielle arched into Xena's thrust, straining closer feeling the hot moistness of Xena burning into her flesh. Her head began to spin, the ache between her thighs, thoughts flew away.

Xena's hand brushed against Gabrielle's face. The bard's tongue lashed out and pulled at a finger. Xena obligingly brought it into range of the bard's mouth. Gabrielle sucked. Her tongue glided over the smoothness of her nail, her knuckle, tasting and feeling the skin, the slight scars from years of heavy activity.

Xena withdrew her finger and touched her breast, circling slowly around the base of her nipple. Sensation streaked as fast and slicing as Xena's chakram, from her breast to the cluster of nerves between her thighs. She felt the petalled flesh leap and pulse and a throaty moan escaped from between her tightly clenched teeth.

She lifted her finger across the burgeoning peak, moistening the skin and rhythmically caressing it.
Gabrielle inhaled a swift breath. Xena looked up. She held up her finger. "Again." She commanded huskily. She obediently licked again. This time Xena moistened her other nipple, massaging and gently rubbing the burning flesh until her body arched beneath her touch.

"Xena" She murmured helplessly.

"Mmm." At the plea Xena lifted her eyes from the breasts that had held her entranced. "Don't ask me to stop." She pleaded with grave blue eyes.

"No." Gabrielle's eyes were hot with passion. "More. Please."

"More?" She asked her voice unsteady.

Gabrielle's heartbeat quickened. "Please."

Xena grinned. "Your command." She replied before burying her head in the bard's chest. Nibbling and suckling with more fervor than before. She moved everywhere. She kissed her mouth, the smooth roundness of her shoulder. Her fingers tangled in the red gold hair at the back of the bard's head, dragging her closer. Her breath warm against the taut globes of her breasts. She drew on a tight peak. Gabrielle writhed against her. She moved lower.

"No." Gabrielle protested the move. Her nipples swollen and deliciously sore missed the warrior's mouth. "More." She begged.

"But I want to kiss you here," She said throatily and slid down over her hip-bone and between her thighs. Teasingly and fleetingly her fingers played amid the moist tangles of red gold hair and then her thumb found the tiny protruding beak of pink flesh. She caressed her and Gabrielle submitted to the ecstasy her head rolling from side to side .

"Yes! Kiss me there. Please." She implored, as Xena moved down her body and she felt her probing tongue reach into that most private of places she gasped. The tongue moved incessantly and she cried out. She was melting and dissolving drowning in a whirlpool of pure pleasure.

In time Xena returned to lie her head beside that of Gabrielle. "Touch me." She said and taking hold oh her hand she carried it down her body.

Gabrielle gasped in pleasure at the touch of Xena's hand guiding her. She moved down the warrior's hard lean body, their fingers entangled together as they reached the dark triangle. Together their fingers touched the moist curls and then the hands separated. Xena's to clasp Gabrielle's back. Gabrielle's to slide down the velvet curls. She slid her hand between the hard thighs, a finger dipping inside her. "Mmm…so creamy…" She murmured as she brought the finger to her lips and sucked on her own finger her other hand playing with Xena's clit. "Delicious." She said staring into blue fire.

They kissed. Their breath coming in hot quick bursts and Gabrielle moved quickly down her warrior's body. Eager for her tongue to replace her hand. Their breathing rasped loud. Sweat glistened on heated flesh. Moments later Xena erupted in a vast explosion of feeling which ran down her arms ands legs, clenched at her heart and made her cry out.

They lay on the floor entangled together. Sweat dripping. A lethargy from their lovemaking filled both bodies. This then was how life was meant to be.

Xena rested secure in her lover's arms. All the years of hurt and pain were washed out. Cleansed by the loving woman who had given her a reason to live. Her heart felt light and buoyant. This was where she belonged.

Gabrielle sighed content with life. "Love, stop thinking." She turned into her lover and kissed her. "I can think of better ways to spend the afternoon."

Love Burns Bright Part VI

Gabrielle straddled her lover. Her heart bursting with love. "Now you need to promise. No more thinking…well have time enough for that out on the road. Now it's time for feeling." She ran her hands up and down the warrior's sides.

Xena thought about Gabrielle's comments, running her tongue around her teeth. Her eyes darkening with passion. "Feeling?" She wrinkled her nose slightly and grinned. "I can handle feeling." She reached up and pulled the bard down to her.

It took no more than a touch. Their mouths locked together. The heat was incredible. She was hot and needy again. Such a fire as though they hadn't touched in months instead of minutes. Her hands tightened and she molded the smaller body closer.

Gabrielle's breasts heaved with each breath against Xena's, so small and delicate…she sometimes forgot that…especially when she watched her love practicing her staff techniques. Despite her slender frame there was such strength in the arms that wound about her neck and the hands that thrust wildly into her hair.

Xena greedily devoured the bards body. Her rough hands grazing the soft skin and Gabrielle welcomed the touch. Her heated blood churning as she moaned loudly. In a feverish rush Xena pressed her mouth against the swollen tips of her lover's straining breasts. Xena's eyes closed in ecstasy as she took possession of the younger woman.

Gabrielle gasped at the intense pleasure that shot through her body. She watched with hazy passion filled eyes as Xena's hands roamed over her flesh. Xena's hands tightened on her sides and slowly twisted her own body pulling the smaller one with her until she was on top and Gabrielle lay under her. Her fingers traced the features of the beloved face. Skimming along a silken eyebrow, across the bridge of her small nose, along the flushed cheeks, and circled her stubborn chin. Her lips followed the path, pausing to plant warm moist kisses on her eyelids, and the corner of her mouth.

She heard a soft sigh escape from her. She returned her attention to Gabrielle's mouth. Breaking the kiss she flicked her tongue over hardening nipples. Gabrielle's skin quivered as she took her mouth on a journey of her body. Ignoring the impatient sounds she made. The callused fingers working their magic over her skin, found their way to the core of her being. She moaned loudly and Xena slowly pushed her fingers inside of her. She arched as she felt the fingers move within her. So ready for release that she was soon screaming out the warrior's name.

Xena watched her incredibly expressive face as she let herself go. She fought the need to bury herself in the bard and watched her lover as her body's shuddering slowed and stopped. She watched her blink to clear her vision, every emotion visible on her lovely face. She smiled and wriggled her fingers a tiny bit. Gabrielle gasped. She laughed huskily. Oh it felt so good to please this woman. She never held back.

"Xena." Gabrielle said with a soft sigh. An expectant smile played on her lips, lips slightly swollen from Xena's kisses. "I love you."

Without removing her fingers from inside the younger woman, Xena pulled herself up to the bard's mouth. "The feeling is very mutual." She lowered her mouth to claim the lips that made her heart sing. Then turned and nuzzled her neck. Gabrielle's head was spinning from the pleasure. She moaned softly, Xena's fingers moving slowly torturously within her. She clung to her lover arching into her.

Xena groaned and moved until her sex rested against Gabrielle's thigh. She gasped and began to move in tandem with her hand. Gabrielle's head rolled back and she dipped her head in. In seconds the two women were flying, desire raw and primitive causing them to lose track of time and space…all that mattered was right here right now. The fire of their love burned out of control, higher and higher the blaze went until there was nowhere left to go. Clinging to each other, hot, damp, and reaching, the y flew into and through the flames. Reaching a place only the two of them could ever reach, both names rang out at the same moment, echoing off each other and resounding around the room.

In the late afternoon light Xena studied Gabrielle's flushed face, the sheen on her skin, the stunned surprise in her eyes, her golden hair fanned out on the coarse blanket of the little cot, and wondered briefly if her eyes held the same dazed look. Gaia, but her heart was overflowing with love.

Gabrielle's smile was one of pure joy. "See?" she said questioningly. Her voice husky and worn. "I did know a good way to spend the afternoon."

Xena smiled, "You sure did." She answered gazing into the green depths of her eyes. I could happily drown in her eyes. Finally she reached and pulled the smaller woman back into her arms. And with more tenderness than she ever thought she was capable of she took her into her arms and kissed her. It was a slow, smoldering kiss, filled with promise, with passion, with all the love Xena had in her. When finally she lifted her head she smiled a dazzling smile that brought a gasp to her lover's lips. Her eyes shining like two azure gems. She opened her mouth and said one word. "Forever."

Gabrielle's heart nearly broke in two it was so full of love. Her joy so intense. "Forever." She replied, snuggling into the warrior's embrace and drifting off to sleep.

Love Burns Bright Part VII

Xena lay comfortably in the arms of her lover. Forever the word echoed lovingly in her heart. They'd both said it…meant it. She had to admit that life really couldn't get any better than this. She sighed silently. To think I almost let it all get away from me. She let her mind slip into the past.

She watched the flames of the funeral pyre get higher and wondered at the strangeness of the Amazon village. She'd been in them before. Had actually had her life saved and taken an Amazon lover once, but something about the people here set her on edge. It was almost as though they were trying to hide some truth from her. She shifted uneasily time to go find her little tagalong.

Gabrielle a Princess? She said she still wanted to travel with me…now I'll have to find a way to keep her by my side or leave her here. She'll be safe here. She walked along the edge of the village using her keen senses to determine the safety of the village. If I leave her here she'll be safe…not in danger everyday like she is with me, and she'll still get the adventure she craves. It's not even that far from Potedaia if she decides she wants to go home again. Ya, maybe that's what I'll do. Leave her here.

Somehow though that decision brought a painful stitch in her side. She paused by the practice ring and watched as a dark haired Amazon roughly her age taught a class on the battle staff. She smiled at some of the antics despite herself. Her eyes narrowed as she saw Gabrielle approach the ring with Ephiny. She frowned. Class was dismissed and the Teacher turned to concentrate on Gabrielle. Ephiny said something that caused the dark haired warrior to wave her arms in argument and finally the blonde warrior stormed away. Something about the blonde warrior set warning bells off in her head. She settled in to watch the young girl.

Gabrielle was nervous but determined to follow through with what had been asked of her. Xena leaned against a fence and watched with interest as her young friend nodded enthusiastically at the teacher. She had moved closer so she could hear the woman give her instructions. Solari was her name and she appeared well skilled and patient. But Xena smiled. Not the perfect teacher for the nervous Potedian, Gabrielle tended to get clumsy when she was nervous and she was nervous now.

"No, not like that." Solari fell into a battle stance. "Like this." She stayed motionless. "Get it?" Gabrielle attempted the stance but truth be told she was petrified and having a hard time concentrating.

Xena stepped over to the two. She squeezed Gabrielle's shoulder reassuringly. "Perhaps if I helped you demonstrate some of the fine points?"

Solari took the opportunity to size up the warrior princess. She'd heard a lot about her, but hadn't seen her in over nine years and could tell the warrior didn't remember her. That was good. Finally she nodded her agreement.

Xena smirked at her young companion, bringing a flush to the slightly freckled face. "If you pay close enough attentions perhaps you'll have a story for your scrolls." She held her hand out for Gabrielle's staff. Smiling at Gabrielle's blush. She winked and the girl's mouth fell open in surprise.

Xena turned back to the Amazon. She didn't why but she was in a really good mood. They weren't going to keep Gabrielle. She'd been foolish to even think she could leave the kid here. She twirled the staff lightly and the teaching began. She let Solari take the lead offering counter attacks and defensive stances to each and every technique Solari tried. The Amazon making comments and explaining her own errors outloud as though it were the most natural of things. Finally Solari put up her staff and Xena relaxed leaning on Gabrielle's staff as she cocked her head at the young princess. Her lips curled up in a smile. "Learn a lot?" Gabrielle nodded enthusiastically. "Good." Xena flipped the staff at her. "Here. Prove to Solari that you learned it." She sauntered past the girl and as she reached her added. "I need to go see a queen about a princess."

Xena chuckled out loud. That had been some day. Gabrielle had proofed that she had could learn the staff and Xena had shown them that she was the one best suited to teach her. She hadn't even had to argue that much, just brought Melosa to the practice field to watch Solari and Gabrielle. Then have Melosa question Solari. It had worked and the next morning she had left with the future Queen of the Amazons.

Her heart skipped a beat as she realized how close she'd come to losing her soulmate.

"Hey," Gabrielle propped herself up on one elbow. "What's wrong?" Concerned green eyes shined down on Xena's blue ones.

"Nothing." She smiled and reaching up pulled her lover in close. "Just thanking my luck stars that you are with me." She folded Gabrielle in her arms kissing her as a shudder ran through her body.

Gabrielle melted joyfully into the kiss, "Nothing?" She arched a brow at her warrior. "Why the shudder?" She touched foreheads together. "Fess up love…you don't won't me worried all night do you?"

Xena chewed on her lower lip. "All right." She sighed. "You caught me." She shrugged sheepishly. "I was remembering your initiation into the Amazon tribe…and how close I came to losing you there."

"Losing me?" Gabrielle pulled back surprised. "But I told you I wanted to stay with you. You took care of it."

"I know." Xena looked toward the fireplace. Honesty right? She sighed to herself. Guess I gotta tell her. She turned to face her love. She smiled at the somber expression. She wet her lips. "Truth is after I left you that day I got to thinking…"

Gabrielle's mouth opened angrily. She sat up on her knees. "You were going to leave me with them…despite telling me you'd take me with you." She felt her heart crack. "I can't believe it…you lied to me."

"No." Xena stayed calm. "When I talked with you I meant every word I said." She reached out and grasped her lover by the chin, forcing her to look at her as she spoke. "It was after I left you. When I was planning my arguments. I got to thinking…thought maybe you'd be better off with them…safer. I was thinking along those lines when you came out for your staff lesson." She smiled at Gabrielle's face. "Yeah, you remember that lesson don't you."

Gabrielle sighed. "Oh yeah. I fell in love with you all over again." She grinned. "I was so proud of you. All I could think was this is my friend…and look at her move. I wrote that in my scrolls that night. Just how it happened."

Xena grinned back and pulled her in close. "When I saw you on that field, watched her trying to teach you, and your frustration, I knew without a doubt I had to keep you with me…it's why I did that. When I left you there remember what I said?"

"Yes." The green eyes danced with delight. "You said 'I need to see a queen about her princess.' That's when you made sure they wouldn't get mad at us for leaving?"

Xena nodded. "I'd proven I knew the staff…your chosen weapon. I'd proven I could teach you." She smiled lazily curling a finger along Gabrielle's cheek. "And I'd proven I knew Amazon customs…all it took." She pulled her lover into her arms leaning in for a kiss. "The rest is history." She said her hot breath fanning Gabrielle's face. "And if I had left you." Her eyes burned into Gabrielle's. I'd of come back."

Gabrielle satisfied with her lover's confession closed her eyes and returned the kiss. "Could have caused a real problem if you did that." She admitted.

"Why?" Xena asked puzzled.

"Cause I wouldn't have been there." Gabrielle smirked.

Xena raised one eyebrow.

"I go where you go…I never would have stayed…"

Xena slid the Bard onto the bed and turning curved her body around the smaller woman. "Let me show you how glad I am that you followed me, that you never gave up on me. that you chose to stay with me." She lowered her head, placing her hand on Gabrielle's mound, smiling as she heard a gasp and felt the moist curly hair beneath her finger tips. Her chuckle low and hard caused the bright green eyes to fly open. The love that met her eyes making her tremble.

Xena plunged her fingers into rich golden hair and pulled her closer. "I love you." She said her voice rough with emotion and kissed her. The moist captivity of her mouth was stunning. The graze of her tongue sent tingling threads down her spine. Gabrielle wound an arm around her neck and as she sipped at her lips Gabrielle felt her breasts grow heavy and her nipples tighten. She sighed.

Drawing back Xena gazed down at her with heavy-lidded eyes, as she feasted on the smooth curves and planes of her body which gleamed in the firelight. "Gaia, but you are gorgeous." She murmured, as she brushed her fingertips across the hardness of Her lover's nipples and Gabrielle was swept over a cliff by the feelings that engulfed her.

Xena lowered her head, and Gabrielle felt her breath warm against the taut globes of her breast. Opening her mouth Xena took in a tight peak and drew strongly on it. Gabrielle cried out. She needed to touch Xena. She reached pout feverishly and the warrior laughed with delight. "Gabrielle." The way she said it sounded like a prayer, and Gabrielle tightened her grip on the warrior's hard body. "Do you know what you do to me?" She muttered as the bard's fingers closed around her. "Oh…yes."

Gabrielle responded by drawing her against her chest, and as she felt the touch and heat of her skin a primal need took hold. She moved against her, dragging the tips of her breast over Xena's darker skin and reveling in the feel of their nipples pressed against each other.

They kissed again and slowly Xena began to work her way down the lithe body. She kissed her cheek, jaw, neck, the hollow between her neck and shoulder the smooth roundness of her shoulder, and eased herself lower to kiss her breasts, and finally leaving her swollen and sore nipples , she slid one hand down over her hip bone and between her thighs, a finger dipping inside her. "So creamy, so ready for me."

Teasingly and fleetingly her fingers played amid the sun colored moist tangles and then her finger found the tiny protruding beak of pink flesh. She caressed her as Gabrielle submitted to the ecstasy her head rolling from side to side. "Please…please." The bard begged for more contact.

Xena obliged. She moved further down her body and Gabrielle whimpered with pleasure as Xena's tongue probed deep within her. The tongue dipped in and out and she was caught up in a whirlpool.
She cried out and Xena's tongue quickened. She felt the velvet muscle questing within her and couldn't contain herself. The blood roared wildly in her head. She screamed the warrior's name and Xena paused briefly before leaning in deeper, to lap the juices up with an eager tongue until finally she moved up the shuddering body to cradle her lovingly in a spooned position.

They lay quietly basking in the sweet lethargy that often comes after lovemaking. The fire still flickered although the once high flames were low and Xena knew she'd have to move soon if t hey intended to keep the room warm, but for now she held the woman that held her heart.

Gabrielle lay curled in the safety of her partner's arms the smell of their recent lovemaking permeated the room. Yesterday she had thought her world was ending. They had said so many cruel things to one another and walked angrily out of each other's lives. How could they do that? When they loved each other so…it was a mystery…but then again wasn't there an old saying? Something about always hurting the one you love? She snuggled closer to her warrior. How many times will we fight? What will be the reasons? She sighed.

"A dinar for your thoughts." Xena kissed the back of her head.

"Oh they're not worth that much." She tried to brush it away.

Xena turned her gently in her arms and looked deeply into her eyes. "Every thought you have is worth at least a dinar…most are worth the largest treasure in the world." She kissed the tip of her nose. "Now tell me. Please."

Gabrielle laughed. "All right." She played with the warrior's hair. "But don't get mad." She looked into startled blue eyes. "I promise I'm okay…we're okay."

Xena nodded. "Then I won't get mad."

"I was just thinking about how everyone fights." She frowned. "And why? And well that led to wondering how often we'll fight and why."

Xena frowned. "Fights happen mostly because we don't stop and look at things from others perceptions only our own. We become so bogged down in our way being the only way that we hit out with weapons and words…and…" She paused swallowing her fear. "…you and me we have some far different philosophies…there are going to be times when our beliefs are going to make this hard…" She closed her eyes and felt a new pain wash over her. "But we will remember tonight." She smiled wryly, "Make that remember the past day and a half…and our love will survive."

Gabrielle smiled. "Yeah…" She kissed Xena at the hollow of her neck. "And if after all our fights, we end up in bed for a day or two I don't think I'll mind at all." She moved her head over and began sucking on Xena's breast.

Xena sucked in her lower lip. "Keep that up and this conversation isn't gonna go anywhere."

Gabrielle smiled and flicked a tongue at the taut nipple. "Talk's over."

Xena's lips twitched with laughter, but Gabrielle silenced her with by moving quickly and thrusting her tongue in.

"I want to feel you all over, every inch of you." Gabrielle murmured as her hand stroked in and over the high curve of her breast, and down her body to rest on the silkiness of her thigh. Her mouth trailing along the strong shoulders, reveling in the strength that pulsed beneath her lips.

"Then do it." The warrior replied huskily, an aching intensity filled her. So Gabrielle lowered her head and kissed and licked her nipples until a shudder ran through her. She slid her hand between the strong tanned thighs and the world slipped away.

Love Burns Bright Part 8

Xena carefully slipped away from the sleeping woman. Gabrielle mewed softly in complaint snagging the warrior's pillow and hugging it close. Xena grinned and padded noiselessly across the room. The fire rose to a cheery height with only a few well placed logs. Xena stepped back to admire her work, and felt an ache in her stomach. Oh gods if I'm hungry she's going to be ravenous when she wakes up. She stretched popping all the muscles along her back. She cast one longing glance toward her before grabbing the tray and heading for the kitchen.

Gabrielle stretched yawning loudly as she did. "Mmm." She breathed in the delicious smell of honey and strawberries, slowly she opened her eyes. She blinked. Xena was sitting on a chair facing the bed a breakfast tray lay on the table before her. "Morning." She shook the sleep out of her eyes and tucked her hair behind her head.

"Morning." Xena's eyes twinkled in the candlelight. "I brought you some breakfast."

"Yeah." Gabrielle sat up. "I can smell it…smells wonderful." She stood up and slid across the floor a sheet wrapped around her body.

Xena's lips curled up in appreciation. She tilted her head up as the bard stopped in front of her. She reached up and snagged the bard by her waist pulling her down into her lap and leaning into her for a kiss.

"Mmm." Gabrielle smiled. "Strawberries…you taste like strawberries."

Xena flowing laughter filled the room.

Gabrielle's heart filled with a lightness that deified reason. She twisted in the warrior's lap and pulled the bowl of strawberries closer, she snagged a large, juicy strawberry and turning licked her lips, before slipping the berry into her mouth and biting slightly into it let it hang loosely in her teeth, the juices dribbling down the sides of her mouth and leaning in close offered it to the warrior.

Xena gently nibbled at the offering, until their lips met. A tingle ran through her lips straight down her spine and into the core of her being. She gasped, pulling the bard closer , licking at the juice that ran down her chin.

Gabrielle moaned and tilted her head to allow access to her neck. Xena licked at the neck, reaching into the bowl of fruit without looking, her hands closed on a juicy fruit. She placed the fruit on the bard's skin and slowly began rolling it around. The juicy morsel left trails of red juice everywhere it touched and Xena bent to the task of cleansing the precious skin. Gabrielle's moans grew.

Xena rose unsteadily to her feet and carried Gabrielle to the bed, peeling back her sheet. "Beautiful…she cupped a perfect breast in one hand and knelt at the edge of the bed. Her thumb caressing the nipple and her eyes feasting on the treasure.

Her breathing turned ragged, but she restrained from pouncing on the bard. "Breakfast is such an important meal." She ran a finger down the bard's valley and circled her belly button. "Don't you agree, Gabrielle?"

"Huh?" Gabrielle fought to remain lucid. Her eyes opened to half mast and she peered at her lover in confusion. "Food? You're talking about food?"
Xena laughed thrusting a small strawberry into her love's mouth. "Chew." She said in a low tone. Smiling as her hand found the container of honey. Using her teeth she pulled the cork out and slowly tilted the bottle, smooth, rich, golden sweet honey slowly dropped onto the bard's erect nipple. Gabrielle gasped. Xena watched hungrily as the honey enveloped the nipple and ran unevenly down the sides of the perfect mound. She drew in another ragged breath and moved the container to the other breast repeating the procedure.

She hesitated a moment feeling the heat of her own body and knowing her own will power was the only thing holding her from ravishing the young woman spread willingly before her. She smiled ferally and poured a liberal amount over the belly button and watched with glee as it filled and over flowed slightly. With an unsteady hand the bottle found it's way back to the table. Xena's hand accidentally bumped the bowl of strawberries and she instinctively snagged a couple more and fed them lovingly to her bard using her teeth to pass the fruit on.

With lips stained a bright red both women drew back chests heaving and Xena's attention returned to the sweet covered mounds. Her eyes lit up like Solstice morn. She fell upon them with a vengeance that could not be denied. Licking , sucking, and nibbling on them until it was almost painful…Gabrielle writhed beneath the onslaught.

When not a trace of honey remained and all remnants of the strawberry was gone she lifted her head. Reached into the bowl and snagged another berry. She bit into it. Swallowing the small bit and taking the rest of the berry she rubbed it sensuously over the bard's swollen lips. Gabrielle's mouth dropped open and her breath already uneven turned ragged. Xena slipped the strawberry in and Gabrielle chewed it slowly, while Xena licked at her lips.

Xena slowly wove her way down the bard's body, licking, nibbling, and sucking at the succulent flesh and driving Gabrielle insane with longing. Separating her thighs with her knee Xena pressed against Gabrielle's sex.

The longing in Gabrielle's eyes as they locked with Xena's went far beyond the stimulation of the moment. Xena surveyed the heated tint to the bard's skin, the loving hunger that glowed in her gold flecked green eyes., the sharp plane of her face, the lush curve of her breasts, and the fullness of her hips before it came to rest on the warm juncture of her thighs where gratification awaited. She pressed her leg in closer feeling the wet moistness against herself. She brushed her lips caressingly against the bard's rosy nipples and smiled at the gasp that wrought.

As Xena continued her assault on the smaller woman the ache within her was growing. Gabrielle touched her in a way that was almost her undoing She raised her to a plane of emotion where the joy seared as deeply as any pain she'd ever experienced, overwhelming the pains and washing her clean.

"Xe…Xena…please…" Gabrielle stammered incoherently.

"Yes, love." Xena brushed back her hair and kissed the lids of those beautiful eyes, before lowering her mouth to the luscious lips that tasted like honey, plunging two fingers into Gabrielle' as she did. Whispering words of love, she forged a trail with her lips that led to the bard's ear and gently nipped at the bard's earlobe.

"Oh gods yes!" Gabrielle cried out, clasping her warrior tighter and rocking with the motion of the fingers within her. Gabrielle knew the time was coming. She could sense the build up, felt the ferocious ardor with which Xena took her lips. She sensed it in the shuddering of the strong frame and she read it in the passionate gaze as Xena drew back to slide her hand between her thighs. Separating her thighs, smoothing the soft flesh there with quick gentle strokes, before plunging her fingers in deep. At first Xena moved slowly, then with increasing passion until all thought was left far behind until there was no speaking except Xena's name torn from her lips as the warrior carried her to a land beyond sight. Where souls became entwined for all eternity. Slowly Gabrielle opened her eyes to see Xena studying her face.

Xena raised herself to look at her beloved mate. The residue of sated passion glittered in the eyes that fluttered open to meet her own. Her lips were swallowed from her kisses. A rosy hue covered her flesh, and she accommodated her weight as though it were always this way, would always be this way.

Gabrielle continued to stare at her. A smile touched her lips and she lowered her mouth, consuming it. She pulled back reluctantly, drawing her along as she rolled to her side. Satisfied only when the warm naked length of her was stretched fully against her. She held her there a moment, reluctant to let her go. Her gaze locked with hers. "We have to move on." She said sadly.

"I know." She reached up and pulled her head down. They kissed, her lips separated, accepting the probing warmth of Xena's tongue.

Xena's heart began pounding harder and she pressed the kiss deeper and Gabrielle molded instinctively to hers. Her hunger stirred anew, she drew back, cupping her cheek with her palm, wanting to etch each delicate detail of her face into her mind.

"Xena?" Gabrielle whispered the name questioningly, wonder in her eyes.

"Hmm?" Xena's eyes never left the bard's.

"Do we really have to move on?"

"Ya," The warrior frowned. "Ephiny's expecting us." She pulled back, attempting to control herself, her desires still smoldering in her eyes for the bard to see. "And you know if we're more than a day or two late she'll have half the nation out looking for you."

Gabrielle nodded, her own voice stilled by the wanton desire in Xena's eyes. "Okay," She finally managed to speak. "but an hour or two won't make much difference. She dipped her head, pressing her lips against the warrior's breast. The seizing the nipple for a lingering kiss, sending new tremors down her spine. Hearing no complaint from Xena she slowly worked her down the long, hard lean body, nibbling and sucking along the way.

The blood boiled in Xena's skin as she gave into her bard. She shuddered beneath the bard's loving touch. Writhed in ecstasy as Gabrielle parted her thighs and licked her. Gasped as she felt the tongue enter her velvet cavern and arched her hips accommodatingly. Her hand curled around Gabrielle's honey colored hair as she wordlessly urged her lover on until finally she was burning up higher than she'd ever been before. She screamed out her love, collapsing in Gabrielle's embrace happy to be alive.

Minutes past as the two women lay entwined. The outside world held at bay for just a little while longer. Finally Xena shifted sand Gabrielle protested.

Xena spoke her voice hoarse with emotion. "Gabrielle, I love you, but we have to get up now." She placed a light kiss on the bard's forehead as she untangled herself. "It's late and we are at least two days behind schedule." She caressed her lover's cheek. "Please love get up."

'But…" She pouted.

Xena's finger rested against her lips. "No. No more words." She shook her head lightly, dipping down for one last kiss.

Gabrielle watched as Xena proceeded to get dressed. Her heart beating faster at the knowledge that no other had ever moved the warrior as deeply as she had. She smiled and rose from the bed letting the blanket fall to the floor. "Here let me get that." She reached for Xena's chest plate. Xena stayed still allowing the younger woman to dress her, and fighting the urge to sweep her back into her arms.

Once fully dressed Xena grabbed a handful of fruits and turned to face the still naked bard. Desire swept though her body and she fought her natural longing to press the beloved body up against her own. Wetting her lips she managed to drag her eyes away from Gabrielle. "I'll go get Argo ready. Room's paid just get dressed and meet me out front."

Gabrielle bit her lower lip. She knew if she spoke Xena would drop everything and be back in her arms in less than an instant, but she sighed heavily and nodded turning to find her clothes.

Xena reached down, grabbed their bags, and quickly strode out the door.

Argo whickered excitedly when she caught the scent of her mistress. Xena grinned. "Hello girl." She moved into the mare's view. "How you doing?" She rubbed her hands over the mare. "This boy take good care of you?" She scratched her behind the ears. "Ya, good girl." She tossed the boy a couple of dinars. "That should cover the extra day…thanks." She smiled crookedly. The boy murmured a thank you and rushed away. Xena proceeded to saddle Argo and walked the golden horse to the front of the inn. She stood silently patting her four legged companion, watching the slow moving villagers and waiting for Gabrielle to arrive. As the bard came through the door Xena's smile grew wide and her eyes softened to the color of the morning sky. She fitted her foot into a stirrup and slid into the saddle.

The bard stopped next to the horse, shielding her eyes from the rising sun. "Hi." The sun caught the golden flecks in her eyes and it was as though the morning sun had come to rest her face.

Xena's heart skipped a beat. She held out a hand. Gabrielle smiled hesitatingly. Xena grinned. "We've wasted enough time…it'll get us back on track." Gabrielle nodded and place her hand in the warrior's larger more muscled one.

Xena lifted her into the air and she settled comfortably in the saddle behind her lover. Laying her head on the warm, armored back and snuggled closer to the warrior. A slight sigh escaped her lips.

Xena froze, the sigh recalling the time before their joyous interlude. Fear that although the bard loved her, she didn't want to continue on their travels nibbled at the corner of her brain. "Are you okay?" She let the fear touch in her voice and her back stiffened.

"Yeah." Gabrielle squeezed her lovingly. "Everything's just right." Gabrielle said with a slight
sadness in her voice. "It's just…" Her voice trailed off and Xena set Argo moving slowly toward the outskirts of the village. And as they past the border the bard spoke again. "It was fun…living in a world that consisted of only us two." She kissed her lover's back. "We'll have to do that again."

The tension went out of Xena's back. "Yeah…we will…I promise." She smiled all was well with her world…even if their little interlude was over.


alt fic index <> homepage