The characters of Xena and Gabrielle and others belong in their entirety to Universal/MCA, Renaissance Pictures, and all the other powers that be Yadayadayada. No copyright infringement is intended. I wrote this story at the urging of my muse; it should never be used for profit.
VIOLENCE – Yup!
LOVE/SEX WARNING/DISCLAIMER: This story involves both love and hot sex between two consenting adult women (It’s a WARRIORJUDGE story – What did you expect). If you don’t know who ALEXIS MORRAL CARINGTON COLBY DEXTER was (in other words, if you’re under 18) or if this type of story is illegal in the state or country in which you live, please do not read it. If depictions of this nature disturb you, GO WATCH POWER RANGERS.
FOUL LANGUAGE – I’m no Tarantino, but I have my moments…
To my BETA readers, mentors and guides: Sam Ruskin, (You’re the greatest!!! Love ya!!!), and Stacia Seaman (the most thorough one)
Comments & Feedback: Please…It makes me write a whole lot faster…
After Gabrielle had calmed down, the judge released her, and Gabrielle lay back, resting her head on the pillow.
“Will you be OK? Would you like me to stay with you till you fall asleep?” asked the judge with genuine concern.
“That won’t be necessary. Thank you, Xena” Gabrielle murmured, and looked at the judge’s worried face. “Go to sleep. You need the rest.”
“Very well. If you need me, call me,” the judge said and rose to her feet.
“I will,” Gabrielle smiled and closed her eyes. The judge turned on her heels and before she left the room, she turned her head to look at the young woman in bed beneath the blankets. She is a charmer...I’ll give her that.
Later that day Gabrielle woke up. She moved to a sitting position on the warm bed and rubbed the sleep from her eyes. She looked around. She was still a little stupid from slumber, but immediately remembered that she was in the judge’s residence.
She combed her hair with her fingers and raised her left wrist to her face to check out what time it was. She couldn’t believe it was 2:00 p.m. already. She felt as if she barely slept at all. I merely blinked and eight hours flew by. I wonder whether she woke up already...
Gabrielle was too embarrassed to walk into the judge’s bedroom to check whether she was up or not. Instead, she decided a tour of the house would be a pleasant way to spend time. She started with the study. Like the rest of the house, it was furnished with heavy oak furniture. The walls were covered with shelves filled with law books, all of Shakespeare’s plays, Virginia Wolfe’s novels, Psychology books, Criminology books and the works of Gertrude Stein. Ummm, A Room Of One's Own, mandatory in every true feminist’s bookshelf.
The next room she walked into was the judge’s gym. She opened the door and her green gaze made contact with the judge, who was working on her shoulder muscles. The judge was wearing black boxer shorts and a white undershirt that was soaked with sweat.
Gabrielle was mesmerized by the way the judge’s strong curvy muscles were flexing and moving under her damp, tanned skin. She felt her heartbeat increasing and a hot flush washed her face as she watched the graceful, powerful movements of the judge’s magnificent and glistening figure. She licked her dried lips, still captivated at the sight of the judge’s sculpted muscles, and the lining of the top of her ample breasts. Try as she might, she couldn’t deny the heat that suffused her groin. The little blonde was startled by the intensity and the location of the heat she felt. It threw her off balance. She couldn’t begin to comprehend the meaning of her reaction to the judge’s shapely body and its movement.
“Good afternoon, Gabrielle.” The judge rose to her feet, grabbed a small white towel, and began wiping her face and neck. “You slept well, I trust?”
Gabrielle just stood and looked at her. If she could have gone outside of her own body, she would have kicked herself for looking like an idiot.
“Are you OK?” asked the judge with apparent concern in her voice.
As she began closing the gap between them, Gabrielle blurted out, “I’m fine, Xena. It’s just that I really want to go home now. I’ll go change, and then I’ll leave...” Without even giving a chance for the judge to reply, she turned on her heels and walked away, leaving the judge confused and surprised.
Was it something I said that drove her away? Was I out of line holding her last night? She practically ran away from here. Wait a minute...She left her car...A huge, satisfied, almost evil grin plastered itself onto the judge’s face. She folded her arms on her chest and waited for the petite blonde to return, tapping her foot onto the floor.
After a minute or two, Gabrielle reappeared in the gym. “I left my car at the Bar...” she muttered, feeling like a moron.
“Spoken like a true genius,” the judge smirked. “Would you like me to drive you to your car?”
“If it’s not too much trouble, yes, thank you.”
“Are you sure you’re OK?”
“Just let me take a shower, and then I’ll drive you. Are you sure you wouldn’t want to have brunch with me?” the judge closed the gap between them.
“No, thanks.” Gabrielle felt embarrassed.
“Suit yourself,” the judge replied and ran her fingers through her damp hair. As Xena passed her, Gabrielle could smell her scent. She caught herself sniffing it, and more alarming, enjoying it.
They both went up to the bedrooms. Gabrielle was the first to finish, so she went downstairs to the main hall and waited for the judge to come down.
The drive to the bar was uneventful. Just before Gabrielle left the judge’s van, the judge said to her with that authoritative voice she used so naturally, “Be at my chambers tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. sharp, and don’t give me a reason to get mad.”
Ding-Dong, the bitch is back, Gabrielle thought. “I’ll be there, Your Honor,” she replied. Even standing in front of the Pussy, sticking her head into the judge’s van, she felt that calling her ‘Your Honor’ was more appropriate than calling her Xena.
Gabrielle arrived at her own house at approximately 4:00 p.m. She found her roommate Tori sprawled on the sofa in the living room, reading a paper.
“Had a rough night?” she teased Gabrielle, who exhaled deeply and locked the door behind her.
“You don’t know the half of it,” she sighed and deposited her briefcase and car keys on the armchair.
“I have a clue, though. They found another body, it said so in the papers,” Tori said. She folded the paper and placed it on the coffee table, then looked at Gabrielle.
“I had never seen a dead body before. It was a terrible experience that I’m afraid I’ll have to go through again, assuming we don’t catch the killer anytime soon.” Gabrielle murmured and dropped to the sofa next to Tori. “What are you doing at home at this hour?”
“I called in sick. I didn’t have the mental capability to deal with work today,” announced Tori.
“You know, sloth is one of the seven deadly sins,” Gabrielle smirked.
“So is gluttony, but you don’t hear me preaching to you about it,” Tori retorted. “And just for the record, what are you doing home at this hour?”
“Well, due to the shameful freaking out act I did last night, Judge Dread...I don’t know...worried about me, I guess, and offered to let me sleep over at her house.” Gabrielle rubbed her forehead. It does sound strange, doesn’t it, Judge Dread being worried. She’s the kind of woman who is capable of holding God in contempt. She didn’t even shiver when she saw the body, for Christ sakes. I would like to think she gotten used to the sight from watching ER.
“You spent the night with ‘Judge Suppho’ last night? Oh my god! You naughty girl...” Tori sounded so cheerful. Too cheerful.
“Stop it, Tori. You know nothing happened.” Gabrielle waved her hand in dismissal.
“I know, darling. It’s just that your reaction to my teasing makes it so much fun,” Tori snickered.
“It's just that I was too upset and shook up last night to drive an hour back to my place at 4:30 a.m.” Gabrielle felt she needed to explain, to sound more convincing, like she had something to hide. My excuse for sleeping at judge’s Lawless last night rates just a little above the ‘My dog ate my homework’ excuse.
Tori knew her friend very well. She felt there was something up, but she had no clue what it was.
“So, how was it, spending the night in her house?” She didn’t add an insinuating tone to her voice, so as not to aggravate the small blonde.
“She has the most beautiful, well, I wouldn’t call it a house...a palace is more accurate. And she has a housekeeper attending her 24 hours a day. She has a pool, a gym, and a billiard room in her house. That place is to die for...,” Gabrielle said as she took off her shoes.
“And how’s working with her?”
“She is so in control of things. She is brilliant. But she makes me wanna kick her ass, and you know I’m not a violent person, Tori. It’s just that she brings out the evil in me. She drives me insane. She is so damn opinionated, and she thinks she’s the goddess of wisdom. She makes me feel like I’m some kind of a pissant idiot and I hate it. But...” Gabrielle’s voice trailed off, and she folded her legs on the sofa, sitting cross-legged, facing her roommate.
“She can be kind, and gentle, and caring. And she has a great sense of humor. She is very impressive.” Gabrielle tried not sound too kind in describing the judge’s more human characteristics.
“In what way was she ‘kind, and gentle and caring’?” Tori raised an eyebrow.
“She stopped aggravating me, and she invited me into her house. She made me a cup of coffee. She told me a little about herself. She held me when I woke up screaming because of a nightmare I had. She was very nice...” Gabrielle said and ran her fingers through her short blonde hair.
Tori looked at her. “What do you know...She’s human after all.”
After a moment Gabrielle had to ask Tori about something that was bothering her.
“Something happened and I need your advice.”
“I knew it!” Exclaimed Tori as she jumped off the sofa. She was so smug.
“Relax, Tori, and sit down.”
Tori sensed her friend was being serious and so she sat down and nodded her head, signaling to Gabrielle she was listening.
“After I woke up in the afternoon I went to look for her. I found her training in the gym. She was wearing a white undershirt and black boxers. She was looking, w...well good...she was looking...very....g...good. And when I…um…observed...her, I felt that...hot wave...You know...Shit, this is insane...” Gabrielle felt embarrassed and bashful. She was blushing furiously and she couldn’t bring herself to look at Tori.
“You are attracted to her.” Tori stated it as if it were an indisputable fact. Her statement had a realization quality to it. She was fighting the giggle that tickled the edge of her throat.
“NO!” Gabrielle exclaimed. “I just thought she looked really good while she was working out, and felt a...little...excited is all,” she dismissed.
“And the distinction would be...?” Tori questioned with a shrug. A big grin was spread along her face. She enjoyed tremendously watching her friend writhing in embarrassment.
“She’s a woman...I don’t get attracted to women. I like men. I love men. I’m crazy about men. As a matter of fact, I want to have a man right now,” Gabrielle said. “That silly incident in the gym was nothing...It was probably because of the previous night’s ordeal and nothing more.” She chuckled, sounding very convinced.
“Well, girl, this must be your lucky day...Jeff Kale called again today.”
“Got me a date tonight,” hissed Gabrielle with a grin, rubbing her hands against one another in satisfaction.
Around dinnertime, a knock on Judge Lawless’s door brought James out of his daydreaming.
“Who is it?”
“Sharon and Tammy,” came the somewhat muffled answer from the other side of the door.
James opened the door, and Sharon and Tammy both hugged him upon entering.
“Where is she?” Sharon freed James from her grasp.
“She’s already waiting for you in the kitchen.” James led the way.
Upon entering the kitchen, Sharon cried, “Well, well, well, if it isn’t Judge Lawless, the ‘straight bender’.”
Tammy and James burst into a fit of laughter.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” the judge hissed.
“I’m talking about the young beautiful straight attorney who spent the night in your house,” Sharon replied.
James, the judge purred in her mind. “You have a big fat mouth, James.” James didn’t answer but went on laughing. “Just for the record, and not that it’s any of your business, she was very upset after seeing the corpse last night, and she lives an hours' drive away from here so I invited her over. We slept in different rooms,” she hissed between clenched teeth.
“She is so easy...” whispered Tammy to Sharon.
“Lighten up, Xena,” James smirked, as they all sat at the table.
“Besides, I’m no straight bender.” The judge felt she had to protect her honor.
“Well, at least a non-practicing straight bender. Let us not forget Dr. Simba.” Sharon teased her.
“May I remind you that she left me for a man...” hummed Judge Lawless. “And in a moment of enlightenment and clarity I saw the first commandment, burning in fire-letters…Uh what an epiphany"
“Yeah, yeah, yeah. Thou shell not fall in love with a straight,” finished Tammy.
“What a devoted disciple,” the judge nodded in approval.
“Where do you get those pearls of wisdom, I wonder?” Sharon sighed deeply.
“Don’t work your head there too much, Sharon, you might hurt yourself.” The judge could not resist the snide remark.
“I think you’re alone not by choice, but rather the lack of one. You’re just too obnoxious and intimidating to be with a woman for too long.” Sharon turned to James and added, “I think they should nominate you for sainthood for actually living with her.”
The judge laughed. It was all in good spirits. She and Sharon went a long way back.
“It looks great, James,” said Tammy, hungrily eyeing the food and breathing in its smell.
“I hate it when Xena does the cooking. She tends to give the food that extra crispiness that food gets when being cremated beyond recognition,” Tammy said, and they all laughed.
“But you have got to admit that when you eat the inside of the food it’s not all that bad,” Sharon continued.
They could almost see smoke coming out of Xena’s ears. She gave them the look of death, but they were all her friends and they loved her, so they weren’t intimidated by her. As a matter of fact, seeing her get mad was a treat to them.
“No, seriously, Xena. James here says that the little blonde eyed you,” insisted Sharon.
“Well, James is known for his great imagination.”
“He said you came running to her room at dawn, when she woke up having a nightmare. Is it possible you’re melting?”
“The girl was terrified, so I calmed her down a little bit. Besides, what kind of a monster do you think I am? I do have fe…fe…you know what I mean!” the judge grabbed her fork and knife and began her assault on the chicken that swam in the soup before her.
“Nobody is saying you don’t have feelings, Xena, it’s just that you don’t let them show. You’ve built an iron wall around your heart and you don’t let anyone get close enough. In any case, Gabrielle admires you. Why not ask her on a date?” James asked.
Xena choked on her soup. “Have you lost your mind? She is a coworker, a straight woman, and an irritating human being. There is no way in hell I’m asking her out on a date. She’s driving me crazy; I’ll only end up strangling her. Now can we give it a rest and eat?” The judge wiped her mouth, and by the way she threw the napkin back on the table, her friends realized they’d crossed a line with her. They'd made her angry.
They all sat down and ate quietly till Tammy started talking. “You don’t have to fear love and intimacy, Xena. Your match is out there, you just have to find her. Look at Sharon and I…Every pot has its cover.”
“Love is not for me. I don’t believe in love. I don’t fear love, I just don’t want it. It’s a waste of time and energy. It only caused me pain in the past. Besides, I tend to screw things up in that area. Hey, nobody is perfect. Now, can we please stop talking about me?” the usually egotistical judge suggested, and resumed eating.
Jeff Kale came to pick Gabrielle around 8:00 p.m. They decided on a new Thai-food joint that had opened recently. While he drove, she watched him, examining him with her eyes. He was handsome and very much to her taste. As she was looking at him, she was thinking about the judge and all that had happened the previous night, and how it felt when the judge held her. Jesus, seeing a dead man can really stir up weird thoughts.
As they were sitting in the restaurant, Gabrielle found it very hard to concentrate on her date’s words. He was telling her about himself, about why he chose this line of work, about his beliefs and convictions, and she found absolutely no interest in his words; none whatsoever.
She tried really hard to keep her eyes on him and occasionally nod and mutter an “Uh-huh” so that he wouldn’t realize she wasn’t listening to him as attentively as he thought. Focus on eating politely with your mouth closed.
She missed the fire that characterized her conversations with the judge.
“So, how’s working with Judge Dread?”
“I’m sorry?” She snapped out of her thoughts, trying desperately not to show it.
He smiled and dug into his noodles.
“She’s a control freak, she’s cocky, she’s almost emotionally abusive. Other than that it’s fine,” she chuckled, and raised the glass of soda to her lips.
“You must be going through hell. Why don’t you quit, if working with her is pure torment?” he raised the glass of wine to his lips and sipped from it.
“It’ll look good on my resume,” she lied. You enjoy working with her on this case. It makes your adrenaline run wildly in your blood, and you know it. You cannot lie to yourself; you can more than tolerate the woman.
“I suppose it will,” he said and chewed his food. “So, I heard they found another body. I also heard you two were on the scene…anything interesting?”
“I’m not allowed to discuss the details of our investigation with you, Jeff. I’m sorry,” she cut through his speech.
“Boy, she really is bossy with you,” he chuckled.
“It has nothing to do with her being bossy. You know very well that the last things we need right now is information leaking into the D.A.’s office.”
After he drove her home, he leaned forward and placed a gentle kiss on her lips. “I had a wonderful time.”
“Me too,” she said. I hope he’s not expecting that I’ll invite him up for coffee or anything. I didn’t appreciate him kissing me too much. I guess he’s not really my type, is all. Maybe I should give him another chance…after all, he’s kind, gentle, and handsome. What was it that that mom used to say--They don’t grow on trees. Gabrielle chuckled to herself.
They broke off the kiss, and Jeff looked into Gabrielle’s eyes. “Well then?” he said.
“I’ll see you in court,” Gabrielle replied.
Disappointment was evident on Jeff’s face when Gabrielle made it clear to him that they wouldn’t end the evening at her place.
“May I call you?”
“Sure,” she smiled.
“Great, I’ll call you tomorrow.”
And with those words he returned to his car and drove off. Gabrielle went upstairs to her apartment.
The next morning, precisely at 10:00, Gabrielle reported to Judge Lawless’ chambers. The secretary showed her to in and closed the door behind her. Gabrielle saw the older woman in her robe, sitting at her huge, messy desk, wearing her reading-glasses, reading.
“Sit,” she ordered, not even looking at her.
“Are you talking to me?” questioned Gabrielle, raising her eyebrows in surprise.
“Do you see anyone else in here?” The judge asked in a low voice.
“Forget it,” muttered Gabrielle quietly. This is going to be a long day.
She sat down and waited for the judge’s attention. This drill is starting to get on my nerves. What does she think I am, her delivery boy? Gabrielle coughed in order to remind the judge of her presence. However, that attempt was fruitless. She didn’t give up and coughed again, louder, more meaningfully.
“I heard you the first time,” the judge said, her eyes still on her papers.
“For a minute there I thought you forgot about me. Look, Your Honor, there are limits to the rudeness I’m capable of tolerating from you. I will not be treated like a damn intern. I’m a lawyer.”
“I’m sorry, you were saying?” the judge took off her reading glass and looked at the young blonde. She seemed oblivious to what the blonde said.
Gabrielle drew out a long breath, “I give up.”
“Anyway, the blood test results are back from the lab. Take a look.” She handed Gabrielle the documents, stretching her arm over the messy desk.
“Only the victim’s blood was found on the scene. They didn’t find the killer’s blood,” Gabrielle said.
“Very good. And what does it tell you, Counselor?”
“Maybe our killer became more careful. Maybe he knows we’re investigating the crime and that we are aware of the fact that the lab reports in previous crimes were forged. He’s being more cautious.”
“Very good! Having said that…” the judge’s voice trailed off, making it clear to the blonde she expected an answer.
“He’s willing to give up a part of his killing rituals. We’re not talking about someone from the D.A’s office covering up for the killer, our killer is someone from the district attorney’s office.”
“Excellent deduction, Counselor,” the judge said.
Finally, a compliment…I wonder if it hurt her…paying me a compliment?
“Now what? With no blood sample, how are we going to catch the killer?” Gabrielle leaned back against the chair in frustration.
“Let’s go to the police impound lot. I want forensics to do a workup on Dr. Bennet’s car. Maybe our killer didn’t think anyone would suspect it was more than a simple car crash and got sloppy and left some evidence or something.”
“Great idea.” Gabrielle sounded impressed.
“Yeah, yeah, move it,” she said and rose to her feet. She took off her robe and hung it up.
Gabrielle stood up and approached the door.
Once again, the judge insisted that they would take her van and leave Gabrielle’s BMW in the parking lot.
Thank god I don’t have to pay for it…
“So, do you feel OK?” asked the judge once they were in the car.
“Yes, I am, as a matter of fact.” Gabrielle smiled, and stretched her arm back for the seatbelt.
“I see the color has gone back to your cheeks. You look fine,” the judge fastened herself in as well.
“Thank you…” smiled Gabrielle. “You see, that’s how you take a compliment.”
“I’ll try to remember,” the judge muttered and started the engine. She pulled out of her reserved parking space.
“I guess you went to sleep early last night, after everything you’ve been through.” The judge tried to make conversation.
“Actually, I had a date last night,” Gabrielle glittered.
“My, my…aren’t you recovering quickly? ” The judge coaxed an eyebrow.
“You know him, it’s Jeff Kale.” Gabrielle wasn’t sure exactly why she was sharing this information with the judge. Maybe to prevent her from trying anything with me. Yeah, right, as if a woman like her is going to give someone like me a second thought. Why do I care?!? I don’t care...
“Look, Counselor, we’ve gotten a little too personal with each other for my taste. By personal, I’m referring to the incident in the bar, you sleeping over in my house, the conversation we had…this is where I draw the line. Keep your love life to yourself, I don’t want to hear about it.” The judge sounded harsh and Gabrielle felt a small sting in her chest she couldn’t explain.
“Too personal? Look who’s talking, wasn’t it you who first told me about your relations with Dr. Lion King?” snapped Gabrielle. I can’t stand this double standard. Calling her the Lion King, though...whatever possessed me?
“I did that only to shut you up, and I expect you to treat her with the respect she deserves. She’s Dr. Straub to you, am I making myself clear? I just hope you're smart enough to keep your mouth shut about our investigation when you’re between the sheets with him.”
Gabrielle was shocked. She kept still for a few seconds, not believing her own ears. When she snapped out of it she replied, “That was way out of line, Your Honor.”
The judge didn’t look at her. She was very annoyed to learn that the charming young blonde was romantically involved with the dashing Jeff Kale. Nah, why should I give a fuck as to who’s boning her? I gotta hand it to her, though, she has spirit.
The young attorney was frustrated. There was no way to please the judge. She was just trying to be friendly. She thought they'd broken the ice between them last night at the judge’s house. Apparently such was not the case.
The judge doesn’t want anything to do with me aside from a working relationship. For the first time Gabrielle felt sorry that was the case. She sensed that the judge could be a great friend. She felt she had a lot to learn from her. She knew that she could never get bored talking and arguing with her And she plays the cello...Gabrielle recalled the judge’s softer side and it touched her.
“I won’t tell him a thing,” Gabrielle muttered, not looking at the judge. She was offended, and the judge knew it and regretted it.
A little while later they arrived at the police car compound. As the judge got out of the car, a young policeman approached her and introduced himself. He led them to the late doctor’s car, which was surrounded by eager forensics people anxious to finish the job and go home to watch the game.
After checking they were all forensics people from the SFPD, the judge explained what she wanted. They all went to work while she and Gabrielle supervised them.
The judge leaned downward till her mouth was close to Gabrielle’s ears “Never take your eyes off of them, let them feel your presence. Let them think you’re like God, that nothing can escape your eyes. Watch that they don’t tamper with anything,” she instructed her and a quick chill ran through Gabrielle’s spine.
Just a draft, explained Gabrielle to herself.
Gabrielle did as the judge suggested. She made her presence known and felt. She watched the men as they went hunting for evidence, wearing their latex and holding nylon bags. The doctor’s Ford was severely burned. There was almost nothing to find there.
One of the men was trying to open the trunk with a crowbar, but failed.
The judge approached him.
"I think we’ll be needing a drill.”
“No we don’t,” she said. She rolled up her sleeves, grabbed the crowbar, and pressed down as hard as she could.
The trunk opened with a great metallic creak voice that made Gabrielle’s skin crawl. What a showoff, she thought as she heard the men cheering for her.
While the judge smiled and looked around her to absorb the admiration, Gabrielle thought, And off she goes to another delightful ego trip. Enjoy the ride.
After they all got over the judge’s exhibition of power, one of the men approached the magistrate. “So, your honor, care to tell us what exactly you’re looking for?”
“Well, it is my belief that this car was sabotaged by someone to make it look like an accident. And since whoever did it wanted to destroy blood samples the doctor had with him, it was important that the car go up in flames. See if there is evidence of tampering with the gas tank,” the judge responded.
Around 6:00 p.m., the commander of the forensic unit on the scene approached the two women, who stood next to the burned-out car. It was beginning to get cold and Gabrielle wrapped her arms around herself, fighting to keep her teeth from chattering.
“So what have you got for me?” The judge asked.
“Well, we couldn’t find any fingerprints or fibers in the car. The blood samples were totally destroyed. The fire destroyed everything. Whoever did sabotage the car, he knew what he was doing. He did a clean job.”
“So you cannot tell me whether a criminal act is involved here or not.”
“Nope, sorry, I could find anything that would substantiate that the doctor’s car was tempered with.” He shrugged and went back to his men.
“Shit,” the judge hissed quietly, but Gabrielle heard her.
“Now what?” she asked her intimidating partner.
“Back to my place, Counselor. We have to do some heavy thinking as to how we go on from here.” The judge turned to look at her. She saw Gabrielle shivering, her jaw clenched. “Are you cold?”
“Yeah.” Gabrielle's trembling voice was barely audible.
The judge took off her jacket and placed it on the smaller woman’s shoulders. The young attorney raised her head to look into the judge‘s eyes.
The judge averted her gaze. “Let’s move, we have a lot of work to do,” she ordered, and began to go back to her van. "What a fuckin’ waste of time that was."
Gabrielle’s mind was too frozen to come up with a snide and witty reply, so she shut up and followed the judge back to the car. All she could think of was getting inside the van and starting the heater and defroster. She was well aware that the judge was in one of her bad moods for finding zilch in the doctor’s car, so she chose to keep her mouth shut and not get on the judge’s remaining nerves.
When they finally arrived at the judge’s house, it was almost 7:00.
James welcomed them both. “Hi judge, and hello to you, Gabrielle.”
Something in the way James smiled agitated the judge.
“What’s for dinner, James?” She asked in a metallic voice and handed him her briefcase. She began walking toward the kitchen, not waiting for his reply.
“She had a bad day?” he asked, whispering in Gabrielle’s ear.
“Yeah.” She whispered back and they both followed the judge into the kitchen.
“Funny, I was going to ask you the same question.” James replied from behind the judge.
“What are you talking about, James?” She snorted and sniffed around, angered when she didn’t detect any sort of smell which resembled food being cooked.
“Sharon and Tammy are waiting for you in the billiard room. You invited them over for dinner yesterday…a dinner you were going to cook for them.”
“I remember no such thing. Now go to the kitchen and fix me something to eat, I’m starving. Besides, what am I paying you for?”
At that point Sharon and Tammy, hearing the judge, entered the kitchen. Both women checked out Gabrielle, who stood by the judge.
“Hi, Your Honor, how was your day?” Sharon asked, pulling up a chair and sitting down.
“You don’t want to know, Sharon, believe me. And, to top it all off, James here hasn’t made anything to eat. Besides, what are you two doing here, anyway?” she threw her hands in the air, almost in frustration.
“You’ve invited us over for dinner. After we said yesterday that you couldn’t cook, and you kept insisting that you can…” Tammy used the kind of voice one uses in order to stir up a buried memory.
“That was yesterday?” the judge exclaimed and shook her head.
“Yup,” Sharon affirmed. “Aren’t you going to properly introduce us to your friend?”
The judge had almost forgotten about Gabrielle’s presence in the kitchen.
“She’s not my friend, she’s my assistant.” The judge immediately corrected. “Gabrielle, meet my friends Sharon and Tammy.”
They all shook hands.
Gabrielle couldn’t deny the sting she felt in her heart when the judge said she wasn’t her friend. She wasn’t sure exactly why. It wasn’t as if she wanted the judge as a friend to begin with. She was merely seeking her appreciation.
The young attorney sensed it was important to the judge to make it clear to everyone, Gabrielle included, that she didn’t consider her a friend.
“Your Honor, since you have guests, I think it would be best if I went home. We won’t get any work done and I hate to interrupt,” Gabrielle said. Her pride wouldn’t let her stay there after the judge’s insult. She felt ashamed, and she prayed no one had seen the color drain from her cheeks.
“You’re not going anywhere, Counselor. Roll up your sleeves. You’re helping me cook dinner,” she threw an apron at her partner.
But of course, your highness, who am I if not your humble slave Gabrielle.
Sharon and Tammy shook their heads at the judge’s rudeness.
“No, I’m going home. It’s getting late.” Gabrielle was upset but she kept herself in check. It was one thing to be ridiculed when they were alone, but an entirely different thing when the judge did it in the presence of others.
“Gabrielle,” Tammy began, “Sharon and I would really like you to stay here and have dinner with us.”
Hello! This is my house, I get to decide who’s staying and who’s not, thought the judge.
Gabrielle looked at Xena for a sign that would show her whether she was welcome or not. A tiny smile was starched on the judge’s face.
“Please Gabrielle, if you won’t help her we’ll end up spending the evening at San Francisco General. She can’t cook.” Sharon helped her partner to persuade Gabrielle.
“All right,” Gabrielle finally said. I’m gonna give her a taste of her own medicine. I wouldn’t miss this for the world…
“Great! So, tell me Xena, what are you making for dinner?” Sharon leaned back on the chair and Tammy went to sit in her lap. Both women watched as Xena and Gabrielle prepared for the cooking.
“I thought about cooking salmon,” the judge replied and opened the refrigerator. She searched for the fish.
Gabrielle turned on the oven.
Xena finally found the fish and took them out.
“James, get your lazy ass over here and scrub in…you’re helping us…” Xena began, but before she finished, Gabrielle cut through her speech.
“No, he’s not. You promised them you’d do the cooking. Be grateful I’m willing to help you. James won’t be assisting you this evening. If you do as I say, you might just survive this ordeal of cooking with your dignity intact. And just for future references, I suggest you leave the kitchen to us professionals.” She felt exhilarated at the unique and rare opportunity to order the judge around. Knowing Xena needed her, Gabrielle felt confident the other woman wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize Gabrielle helping her cook. She felt intoxicated by her newfound power.
As all four women were in the kitchen, naturally an argument started.
“I cannot believe you just said that,” exclaimed Gabrielle as she placed the five salmon in the tray.
“But it’s true,” retorted the judge, looking more aloof than ever as she open the cupboard and took out the spices.
“No, it’s not. It’s prejudicial. You make it sound like all men are violent scum of the earth.”
“Most of them are.”
“No, they are not.”
“Think about it, Counselor, all wars throughout history--millions of people getting slaughtered--this was all men’s doing.” Xena emphasized the word ‘men’
“If women had the power they would have done the same.” Gabrielle replied.
“That’s where you are wrong.” The judge hissed.
“No, I’m not."
"Most of the rapes and violent crimes are committed by men, not by women.” She cannot argue with that, now can she…It’s a fact!
“So men are a little more aggressive than women, so what. You make it sound as if men are merely animals that walk, talk, and dress like human beings. Take James for example, do you think he’s an animal?”
All of the women looked at James.
“No,” said the judge.
“Aha!” exclaimed Gabrielle triumphantly.
“But that’s because he’s gay. He’s hardly a man,” Xena continued.
“Hey!” James jumped off his seat.
“By that rationale, you’re hardly a woman because you’re gay,” Gabrielle argued.
“Look closely, my dear. I’m 100% woman.” Xena narrowed her blue eyes. She stretched and made her breasts show in all their glory. Nonetheless, the rage was building slowly but steadily in the pit of her stomach. “Homosexuals and lesbians are different.”
“Different how?” questioned Gabrielle. At that point she realized she was neglecting the cooking, but she decided she wouldn’t let the fish distract her, No pun intended. She needed to concentrate fully on the higher task in hand. Bringing judge Lawless to her knees.
“The majority of Homosexuals are looking for asses to place their dicks in. They are after the sex and nothing more. It’s all physical to them. An ‘open relationship’ is a pattern of couplehood most common between gay man. Lesbians are different. They look for the love and feelings in relationships. Lesbian couples have the lowest ratings of infidelities. Lesbians commit adultery less than straight men, straight women and gay man.” The judge stated. She felt very good about herself.
“Oh, I see, and there I was thinking that the women you pick up on bars for a quickie served your profound needs of love and emotions…” Sharon said. She just couldn’t stand it anymore.
“Sharon! Don’t help,” the judge hissed. Years of friendship and that's my reword. “It’s different. I pick up women in bars because I don’t believe in love and not because I was pre-disposed by nature to follow my pussy, no pun intended…” the judge replied. “And you, little girl, don’t know shit!”
“Oh, I see,” smirked Gabrielle. “Well, excuse me, the ignorant one.”
“I forgive you, Counselor.” The judge grinned in a devilish way.
“You’re impossible!” Gabrielle threw her hands into the air in frustration.
“So are you,” the judge replied more calmly and wiped her hands on the towel she placed on her shoulder. “I can understand why a woman like you is fighting for men’s good name.”
“And what is that supposed to mean?” questioned Gabrielle, placing both her fists on her waist.
“You’re sleeping with them,” retorted the judge. The word 'them' dropped from her mouth with almost disgust.
“So?” asked Gabrielle, turning to spice the fish.
“Just so you’ll know, Gabrielle, according to statistics, there is a 60% to 80% chance that your hubby will cheat on you, whereas only 30% to 50% of all wives cheat on their husbands,” the judge cocked an eyebrow suggestively.
Gabrielle stopped and took off her jacket. It was beginning to get very hot in the kitchen.
“I think that only proves that women are better liars than men.” Gabrielle felt she had just about run out of sufficient energy to continue this conversation.
“What do you know?” the judge threw at her mockingly. "As a matter of fact there was a study they did on the difference between girls and boys on the whole lying issue, and guess what girls tend to lie less than boys."
Patronizing again… She’s so infuriating.
The judge placed the tray with the fish into the hot oven, and closed the oven’s door.
After several moments of silence the judge said, “I don’t hate men, Counselor, I just believe them to be inferior to women, is all.”
I cannot believe her calmness, when she talks like that
“That’s racism!” Gabrielle barely kept from raising her voice at
the judge. I cannot believe she was nominated to preside as a judge, with
those kinds of convictions.
“For every 16 prisons there are for men, there is 1 prison for women. One of every three women is sexually assaulted. One of every seven women is beaten by a man. For every woman who commits suicide, there are four men who do…What does it tell you?” The judge asked. She was fighting not to start screaming at the younger woman.
“You are so judgmental!” Gabrielle patience was at the brink...almost out of reach.
“What did you expect? I’m a judge!” she exclaimed.
Sharon and Tammy watched the two women who were almost at each other’s throats.
“They're behaving like in ‘When Harry Met Sally,’” Tammy whispered to her spouse.
“Yeah…the David Lynch version,” came Sharon’s reply. They both covered their mouths with their hands as they quietly giggled.
“These two are like an accident waiting to happen” Tammy stated quietly beneath her breath.
Sharon stifled a giggle “More like a law suit waiting to happen…”
“I think they want each other,” Tammy blushed.
“I don’t know about Gabrielle, but Xena definitely has the hots for the girl” Sharon replied.
“My 20 bucks say Xena is gonna bed her with in the next three days.” Tammy posed a challenge to her beloved partner. She didn’t do it for the 20 bucks, only for the fun in it. After all they shared everything between them, finances included.
“I know this is Xena we’re talkin’ about here ‘straight bender’ and all, my love, but I think that you give her way too much credit. My 20 bucks say it’ll take her a week” Sharon picked up the glove. The two went on watching ‘the show’ in delight.
“Would you consider your father to be a beast?” Gabrielle asked.
She is going to make one heck of a criminal defense attorney one day.
"My father left my mother when I was 10 years old, after he beat the living daylights out of her. Never ask a question to which you don’t know the answer, Counselor. Didn’t I teach you that in law school?”
“Time out.” Tammy signaled with her hands. “Thanks, you two, for this outstanding debate on the issue Man: Human or Beast, but I’m getting hungry.”
“It’ll be ready in an hour.” Both cooking ladies said in union. They were both too pissed off at that point to laugh.
“Now let’s make some mashed potatoes, shall we?” Gabrielle said, then turned to the judge. “Where do you keep your potatoes?”
“Beats me. James, where do we keep the potatoes?” The judge turned to the only man in the kitchen.
“I don’t think I’m man enough to tell you,” he answered.
“Come on, James. You know I only said it for the sake of argument.” It sounded as if she whining.
“I’ll tell you, but only because I like Gabrielle so much,” he smiled at the blonde and she smiled back. “They are in the cupboard by your knees, Gabrielle.”
“I have a feeling you’re all siding with her against me,” the judge hissed. “Don’t forget who signs your paycheck, James.”
“Honey, you cannot live without me for a minute,” he replied, and left the kitchen.
I hate it when he says that…because he is so damn right.
“Start peeling them,” the judge ordered the young attorney, a wicked smile crossing her face. “Get used to being a slave to your husband."
“I’ll just pretend I didn’t hear that,” said Gabrielle. “And I’m not peeling them alone, Your Honor. I’m doing you a favor, not the other way around.” Gabrielle was at the point of beyond caring how she sounded.
Sharon and Tammy looked in awe at the young attorney who answered back to the honorable Judge Lawless and lived to tell the tale...at least for the time being.
“So, Counselor, I’ve been meaning to ask you, what do you think we should do next?”
“Make a salad?” offered Gabrielle.
“No, Gabrielle,” replied the judge, letting her lack of patience show. “About the case.”
Sorry for not being a mind reader, Super Judge. I don’t know.
“I don’t know, what do you suggest?” asked Gabrielle.
“I think you should withdraw from the case." The judge didn’t look at her.
“Are you implying I’m somewhat incompetent?” Gabrielle felt the blood leaving her face.
“I don’t think you have what it takes for this kind of thing.” the judge replied coldly.
That did it. Gabrielle was enraged and hurt. Enough is enough. I simply won’t work with a person who doesn’t have an ounce of respect for me. She quietly washed her hands in the sink, fighting back tears. “Just for the record, you didn’t boot me off the case, I quit!”
“Fine!” Gabrielle’s response came in the same harsh and angered tone the judge used.
The young attorney left the kitchen as the stunned judge watched her. She grabbed her briefcase and jacket and stormed out of the house. She remembered she needed to get back to the courthouse in order to retrieve her car, she had left there earlier.
Great, If I’m headed to court, might as well pick up a restraining order against her on my way home.
Once she reached the road, she stopped a cab to drive her back to the courthouse so that she could retrieve her own car.
“What’s wrong with her?” the judge asked Sharon and Tammy.
She didn’t expect an answer. She knew she'd hurt Gabrielle, but she couldn’t understand why she'd done it. Why did she feel the urge to cause her pain? Was it because she wanted to see whether she possessed the power to do that? It was ridiculous. After all, she had a sharp tongue; she could cause pain to whomever she wanted by mere words. She knew she could easily insult the young, inexperienced woman. Could it be that I’m afraid this case will corrupt the innocence and goodness of this woman?
“You were way out of line, Xena!” Sharon said in a strained voice.
The judge began to regret what had taken place in her kitchen. “I’ve really gone too far, haven’t I?” She blew out a long, heavy breath.
“Yes, you have. You go after her and you apologize to her, too.”
The judge left the kitchen with big hasty strides. She knew Sharon was right. She opened the door to her house and looked at the road, only to see the young attorney get into the cab and drive away.
“Shit” she hissed.
Continue to Part 4
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