OWNERSHIP DISCLAIMER 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 CARRINGTON 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 depiction of this nature disturbs 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 Beta on the Xenaverse).
Comments & Feedback: Are most welcomed. Thank you.
It was quite late when the dashing Jeff Kale and the beautiful Gabrielle O’Connor finished eating dinner at her apartment. The dinner went fairly well. Jeff was very pleasant company; he was very polite and attentive, and he was a good listener even though Gabrielle didn’t talk too much. There was something calming about him. Numbing would be my choice of wards, though Gabrielle.
On more than one occasion Jeff found himself listening to Gabrielle talk about the Honorable Judge Lawless, but he displayed patience, even interest. He realized that working with Judge Lawless was a far from enjoyable or even positive experience, but it seemed to him that Gabrielle was a little too worked up about it.
For Gabrielle, dinner went fine. A little boring actually. I guess Xena set up new standards for interesting conversations for me. That’s it…she ruined conversations for me. If there are no sparks, if there is no battle, it’s numbing for me. She wasn’t even aware of the fact that she talked about the judge most of the evening.
Around midnight, Gabrielle found herself standing with Jeff at the threshold of her apartment.
"So, I guess this is goodnight,” he said.
There was silence. He looked at her lips, and then placed his arms around her waist. She saw him leaning forward and down towards her. Gabrielle felt herself pulled closer against him. She tilted her head up to meet Jeff’s. He kissed her gently on her lips, and Gabrielle responded to his touch by placing her hand behind his head and pulling him to her in order to deepen the kiss. She opened her mouth and invited his tongue to taste her mouth--an invitation that he gladly took. The kiss went on for several moments.
"That was nice, wasn’t it?” he asked, his breath a little ragged.
"Yes, it was,” she replied and covered her mouth with her hand.
He leaned towards her mouth in order to kiss her again, but she stopped him by turning her head to the side.
He immediately pulled back "I’m sorry, I thought…” he seemed almost lost.
"Oh, you shouldn’t apologize. It’s just that…I need some time, you know,” she said. She felt she needed to do a lot of thinking.
"Besides, we have to save some for later,” she half-smiled. He smiled back. Gabrielle thought she'd succeeded in putting his mind at ease.
He finally left after promising her he’d call the next day. She said she would look forward to it, but didn’t sound particularly enthusiastic about it. After she took a shower, she put on her nightgown, climbed into bed, and turned off the lamp that stood on her dresser. The moonbeams washed her room with pale bluish light. She felt uneasy being alone with her thoughts that night and wished it wasn’t too late to wake up Tori and talk to her about what was going on. Tori could be a kidder most of the time, but she was also very mature and serious about a lot of things. Gabrielle knew she could count on her friend's help.
Why did I invite him over to my place tonight? Yes, he seems like a great guy, but I don’t feel fire or sparks between us…sparks…that’s the second time I've used that word tonight. I thought I made up my mind last time we were out on a date. And yet, today, after seeing Xena with that lion-bitch-Simba-woman, I felt this strong urge to date Jeff.
Gabrielle's thoughts drifted to that night she'd spent at the judge’s house after they had visited the crime scene. She remembered how the judge had burst into her bedroom with only the gun and a towel wrapped around her body. She remembered how the judge had told her that she didn’t want her career to be damaged by going head to head with the D.A.’s office. She is protective of me. She cares for me, with her tough attitude and all…Gabrielle remembered how the judge had held her in her arms when she woke up screaming because of a nightmare. It felt safe. It felt comforting; it felt good.
The scariest thing was the way she'd felt when she saw the judge exercising in her private gym. What’s happening to me? Why do I feel this way? Why do I think about her so much? Why did it hurt when I saw her with Simba? Why do I let her get to me? Why did I see her face when I kissed Jeff? Am I beginning to fall for her? It’s impossible…I never felt this way towards a woman in my life. Besides there is a huge difference between being curious about kissing a woman and actually sleeping with one. I cannot possibly have sex with a woman, and I don’t care how divine she looks. So, maybe I’m just being curious about Xena…that’s all. It doesn’t make me gay. I’m sure a lot of women think about kissing their girlfriends.
It’s not totally uncommon to have those... romantic feelings about a person under the circumstances that Xena and I met. I mean the whole mystery, fear, excitement, and even danger that we’re experiencing, trying to catch the killer, stirs romantic feelings towards one’s partner... it’s normal for me to have those feelings... it happens all the time, just like men during a war...
Besides, I am just not willing to live life as a gay woman. I don’t need people whispering behind my back like people are talking about Xena behind her back. And what am I going to tell my parents? I want to be normal. I want to be like everybody else. I want to get married and have kids…I don’t want to be an outcast, I don’t want to hang out in bars called The Pussy. I need stability. I need conformity. I want a normal life. I don’t want to end up like Xena…screwing countless faceless women for years…I want love and companionship.
Besides she can’t love anyone, least of all me. She would just toy with me. If I showed her the slightest hint of interest she would seduce me, fuck me, and leave me like she did so many others. I don’t need this. I don’t want this. I won’t be another faceless conquest. I won’t be another night of cheap sex. I won’t be another notch in her belt.
Even if she did love me, I don’t want to live my life as a lesbian…there are too many sacrifices…too high price to pay…and it would make me feel less worthy in my own eyes…I would feel as if I’m damaged, not being like everybody else. I need people’s approval. Being a lesbian would make me feel less than perfect.
And she won’t love me, simply because she can’t.
I have to stop thinking about it. I have to stop thinking about her.
Gabrielle fell asleep just a little before dawn.
The next morning Gabrielle woke up with a slight headache. She was tired, but she knew a long day was ahead of her and so she took a quick shower to freshen up, drank a cup of coffee, and hit the road, off to the judge’s house. I just hope I’ll make it on time…I’m really not in the mood for arguing with her, I have enough on my mind at the moment. She was glad she wouldn’t be home all day and would miss Jeff’s phone call. She realized he would expect another date, maybe this time at his place, and she was far from ready for that.
The moment that James opened the large wooden door to the judge's residence, Gabrielle could hear the sweet deep sounds of the cello. It was Bach’s Partite No.1 The prelude, she thought. Walking into the house, she saw the judge sitting at the edge of an old wooden chair, wearing a white silk shirt with long fluffy sleeves, black pants, and no shoes, holding the magnificent instrument between her thighs.
The judge seemed so absorbed in the playing, the sounds, and the divine music that she didn’t stop. She didn’t give any sign that she was aware that Gabrielle was standing in the main hall listening to her. In fact, she wasn’t aware of the blonde drinking in with thirsty eyes the sight of the beautiful blue-eyed woman, oblivious to the world, stroking the cello with strong yet gentle hands; holding the instrument--resembling a woman’s body in its shape--in the most sensuous of ways.
Gabrielle was mesmerized by the sight of the breathtaking judge possessing the cello with her body, commanding it, producing godhood from its strings. The swaying of the judge's body, the expression on her face, enchanted her. She didn’t realize she'd stopped breathing. A shiver ran down her spine and her skin crawled. The sight and sounds stupefied her. She forgot about the rest of the world, concentrating only on the sight before her.
When the judge finished, she lifted her head and saw Gabrielle standing in front of her. The sounds of the cello still echoed in the hall.
"Morning,” the judge greeted, still holding the cello between her legs.
The judge's voice broke the spell Gabrielle was under, pulling her back from paradise into the real world. "Good morning, Xena.” She drew out a long breath of air. With widened, glittering eyes she said, "Wow,... The way you... p... play... Jesus... it’s... god, wow.”
"Speechless at last,” the judge chuckled. "Thanks... I think,” she stood up, pulling the instrument from between her legs and leaning it against the stand.
"Don’t let it get to your head,” Gabrielle smirked. She felt she had to say something, anything, so that the judge would not sense how overwhelmed she was by her.
"Ouch, that hurt.” The judge placed her palm above her heart and made a face.
The display made Gabrielle laugh deeply.
"Care to join me for breakfast?” the judge inquired.
"Thank you.” Gabrielle felt a little lightheaded, intoxicated; enchanted, even. She couldn’t understand why, but she felt as if she was walking on clouds. She refused to allow herself to think that the judge had something to do with that unique and dangerous feeling.
They sat at the dining table by the pool at the back of the house, sharing breakfast.
After a few moments, Gabrielle mustered up enough guts to say, "I never thought playing the cello could seem so sexy.” I hope she won’t take it the wrong way...
"So, it seemed sexy to you?” The judge raised an eyebrow, leaned back her chair, and observed her assistant from above the rim of her glass.
"Yes it did.” Shit, my ears are on fire... I must be blushing like hell. You’re not Mother Theresa, Gab, cut the blushing out.
"What made it seem sexy?”
Somebody call the fire department. I can’t believe she is doing it to me. I knew this would happen. She’s trying to check me out, to see how far I'll go, to examine me. I’m not gonna fall for this.
"The way the cello is being held, is all,” Gabrielle muttered, not meeting the judge's eyes.
"I see,” the judge said suggestively, but out of the goodness of her heart (As if... ) she let this one slide, deciding not to make the young attorney any more embarrassed than she already was.
"Would you teach me to play the way you do?” asked Gabrielle, her eyes filled with shimmering hope. She almost seemed like a child.
"I tried to, yesterday, but you had better things to do... ” the judge said.
Don’t get mad, get even. "I made other plans when I learned you might be occupied yourself with Dr. Straub,” Gabrielle replied, and placed her fork on her plate rather angrily.
"WHAT?” the judge exclaimed, leaning forward.
"You heard me.” Gabrielle began to fear she might have gone a tad bit too far, but she kept her voice steady and firm.
"What are you talking about?”
"At her clinic... I heard the things she said to you... ”
"You had no right to eavesdrop on us,” the judge's voice grew louder.
"I didn’t mean to.” Gabrielle sounded apologetic.
"She wanted me back and I told her ‘no’... Unlike some of us, I’m capable of saying the word ‘no’.”
The judge’s unsubtle hint made steam come out of the young blonde’s ears. She just lost control. "Bitch!”
"Lawyer!” the judge spat back.
Gabrielle stood up and stormed back into the house. The judge immediately regretted her words and ran after the storming lawyer. She finally caught up with her and grabbed her by her arm. "Wait!”
Gabrielle, being no match for the judge’s physical strength, halted.
"Look, I’m sorry, Gabrielle. I don’t know where that nasty remark came from. You are entitled to do whatever you wish in your spare time. You don’t owe me anything. I’m sure Jeff’s a wonderful guy,” the judge said.
"I’m sorry too, about my remark regarding you and Dr. Straub.” Gabrielle lowered her gaze. Gabrielle trying to pull away from the judge, and the judge eased her grip on Gabrielle.
"Let’s go back to our breakfast.” The judge let out a sigh of relief.
"OK,” Gabrielle responded, and they walked together back to the dining table.
"I took the liberty of going through some of the personnel files last night without you. I hope you don’t mind.”
"I wished you would have waited for me so that we could do this together.”
"Well, fear not. There are still hundreds of files to read. We’ll begin after breakfast,” the taller woman said.
They both sat at the judge’s huge wooden desk in her study, which was currently littered with countless piles of files.
"Remember Dr. Straub’s profile. Don’t bother with reading women’s files, men over 50, or married men.”
"What about men who live in apartment buildings? After all, what the killer does with the bodies takes privacy and--”
"Yeah, but our killer might be renting a warehouse or something like that for the killings, so he could be living in an apartment building,” explained the judge. "If you come across men who match the doctor’s profiles, put them in a pile behind me so that they won’t mix up with other files.”
I guess I won’t be hearing a please from her. "Fine,” Gabrielle said. "By the way, once we finish going through the files, then what?”
"We’ll start bringing people in for questioning.”
Ooooo... beware the holy inquisition, Gabrielle thought.
The judge put her reading glasses on the tip of her nose and buried herself in the file she was holding. She looks so funny and cute when she does that. Cute??? I cannot believe that word came to mind in reference to her. Gabrielle turned her focus to the files. They sat and read for several hours, occasionally consulting with one another on the more difficult files. After a brief lunch, they went back to the study and continued reading until 10:00 p.m.
"Enough... I can’t read anymore today,” Gabrielle said, drawing out a long breath.
"Me neither,” the judge admitted. She took off her glasses, placed them back in their case and rubbed her eyes with the fingertips of both hands. "Do you wanna eat something?”
"No, I better get back home. It’s getting real late and I have a long drive home.”
"May I make a suggestion?” the judge asked.
"Why don’t you spend the night over at my place. There is no reason for you to drive an hour back to your house just to sleep, only to return tomorrow morning. Besides, I promised you cello lessons. You wouldn’t want to make a liar out of me, now, would ya?”
"Well... you have a point there, and I enjoyed last time... Sure, why not?”
"Great. I’ll notify James so that he can prepare your bedroom. What would you like to have for dinner, Gabrielle?”
"After that huge lunch we had, I must admit I’m not hungry yet.”
"So, do you wanna take a shower and turn in?” The judge was afraid that Gabrielle would answer ‘yes’ to that question. She was hoping the attorney would want to stay up and spend some time with her.
"As a matter of fact, I was hoping you’d allow me to swim in the pool. It’s a rather warm evening,... ”
"Sure. Just so that you’ll know, I don’t have a bathing suit since... ”
"You swim in the nude.”
Shit... I cannot believe she actually knows me this well. She can see right through me and it scars the shit out of me. I don’t understand.. why do I let her get so close to me?
"Correctamundo. So, I’ll tell him to bring you one of my sports bras and a pair of boxers, will that do?”
"It would be even nicer if you joined me... ” Gabrielle tried not to sound bashful, but failed.
Stop doing it! Stop flirting with her!
"Would you like me to join you?” the judge asked. She needed to hear Gabrielle’s answer.
"Very much so,” Gabrielle smiled.
You’re doing it again! Stop it! Gabrielle’s mind screamed.
What in God’s name do you think you’re doing, you idiot, you’re gonna fall for her, can’t you see that? One look at her naked, firm, delicious body, along with a heart-to-heart conversation and you’re done for. May I remind you that she has a boyfriend? There is no way I’m losing this battle. I’ll just politely say ‘no,’ go upstairs, brush my teeth, and go to sleep.
"Well, then, I’ll be delighted,” she smiled back. She didn’t want to admit it but she was lightheaded.
They both went upstairs where they stripped and put on sports bras and boxers, then met downstairs by the pool. It truly was a beautiful night. The moon was full and a warm breeze stroked the two feminine bodies that stood still, one next to the other. Xena looked at Gabrielle and felt a dull ache in her chest that she hadn’t felt in years. She couldn’t remember its true nature or quality, but she knew she should be scared, and she was.
The water sparkled with silver shades from the moon on this quiet night. Gabrielle felt restless, even excited. She wanted something to happen, but her body shivered in fear at the thought. Gabrielle felt a weight on her heart that made it difficult for her to breathe. Calm down, Gabrielle, just calm down. Nothing is happening, nothing. She turned her head to the right and passed a quick examining look at the taller woman’s body.
You’ll have to be like Fonzie, Xena... remember Fonzie from "Happy Days”? He was cool and so will you be. Stay cool. It was just a look, a miserable look, nothing more. I need a cold bath. And with that thought in her mind she jumped, head first, into the pool. She heard Gabrielle’s body impact with the water as well. The wet judge gazed at the splashing water as Gabrielle reemerged, water cascading down her well-toned body, down her firm round breasts and sculpted abs. Xena licked her lips at the sight of Gabrielle’s rippling muscles.
Gabrielle and Xena began swimming a series of laps till they were both breathless and weary. Gabrielle was the first to climb out of the water. She sat at the rim of the pool, watching as the raven-haired woman swam towards her. Gabrielle’s jaw dropped when her green eyes met with the sight of the judge coming out of the water. Her hair was slicked back, accentuating her breathtaking face, and the water stroked her body, dripping over every curve in her perfect form. The judge grabbed two towels and wrapped one around Gabrielle’s quivering, wet shoulders.
"Thanks,” Gabrielle raised her head to look at the judge, who replied simply, "You’re welcome.”
The judge sat down next to her near the edge of the pool. They shared silence at first as they looked at the now calmed water.
"You're a good swimmer,” the judge complimented the attorney.
"Thank you, so are you.”
"Oooo, stop you’re making me blush,” the judge chuckled.
"Oh, excuse me for forgetting you couldn’t take a complement,” Gabrielle chuckled, and looked at her partner.
"I’m not that bad, really,” the judge wore a somewhat serious expression.
"I know you’re not, but you’re far from being an easy woman to get along with, either,” the counselor commented.
"I know,” the judge admitted.
"But I guess that’s your charm,” Gabrielle couldn’t believe the wards that came out of her mouth. Stop it, you idiot, you’re making a pass at her, don’t you see?... I do not... do too... not.
"I’m not charming.” The judge felt as if she would blush like a schoolgirl... In a Catholic school.
"It is my belief that you are well aware of it--that charm of yours, I mean.” Gabrielle couldn’t look at the judge anymore; it felt too intense already.
"Maybe you’re right.” The judge raised her knees and wrapped her arms around her legs. She sounded somewhat wondrous, looking ahead at the water. "On second thought, I couldn’t charm the women in my life to stay with me.”
"Maybe you made some bad choices picking your lovers,” Gabrielle suggested. Her voice was gentle and comforting. She looked at the judge intently, willing the judge to look at her as well.
"No. It’s not that the separations weren't entirely their faults,” the judge said, then paused. "They weren’t bad people, really... Well maybe except Nell. She was so skinny that she could make Lara Flynn Boyle look like Miss Piggy.”
They both laughed.
"If a couple breaks up, there is never one party that is solely guilty in the separation,” Gabrielle agreed and nodded.
"Why did you break up with that guy, what’s his name?”
"Steve, and he was the only serious boyfriend I have ever had. I guess I broke it off because I didn’t really love him, not like I knew I’m capable of loving. I felt there was something missing, and I didn’t think it was fair to either of us if we stayed together,” Gabrielle replied. "How about you?”
"Well I’ve been in three long-term relationships. The first was Dr. Simba. She was straight when I met her. I was in law school and she was in med school. I met her, seduced her, and she became mine. We moved in with one another after a week of dating. But I spent too much time at the library and almost no time at home. She complained about me not being there all the time. But I had dreams of becoming this great successful lawyer and she was alone, without me, her lover. I can't really blame her for seeking love and togetherness elsewhere. I wasn’t there for her.”
"What about the third one?”
"Yeah, aside from Simba and Nell, there was Belinda. It’s been ages since I spoke her name out loud,” the judge sighed. It wasn’t easy for her to talk about it, but she somehow felt safe discussing it with Gabrielle.
"What happened?” Gabrielle asked.
"I was busy making a name for myself. Once again I spent most of my nights and days in my office and almost no time at home. I guess work was a very good excuse for me. She loved me, and I didn’t return that love. I was too scared to give into love at that point. It made me feel weak and helpless. I couldn’t stand the thought of being at the mercy of another human being, the thought that my happiness would be dependent on another person.
"She made me pay for my absence. I was under a lot of pressure at times, and she made it clear to me that she wouldn’t support me or be there for me if I needed her. She let me know she wouldn’t be there for me, to carry with me the burden of my stress. I made her feel alone and she paid me back in the same currency, loneliness.”
The judge paused and took in a long breath as if preparing herself for the rest of the tale. "I remember the day my brother died. He died of cancer. He was only 20 years old. I was devastated. I felt so heavy, hurt, and tired. I was very close to him. He was a wonderful person. He was my best friend, and the first one I told I was gay.”
The judge's blue eyes began to fill with tears, which she fought back, trying to maintain a calm and steady tone of voice.
"He was so understanding about it, and he loved me just the same. When I got the news of his death I was in my office. It was around midnight. I needed comfort so desperately; I needed Belinda like I'd never needed her in my life. I drove home. When I got there I stuck my key into the keyhole, but her key was jammed on the other side, and so I couldn’t open the door. I knocked on the door and there was no answer. Since her key was on the other side I knew she was there. I began pounding on the door like a lunatic, crying out my agony and grief. I can still remember how hot the tears felt on my cold face.”
The judge let all her defenses down. The tears that had been trapped in her beautiful eyes were now washing her face.
"I wailed till she opened up. I begged her to let me in. She refused. I told her I was sorry that I stayed so late at the office.” The judge’s voice betrayed her and began trembling.
"She told me to go back to my office and spend the night there. I told her that my brother had passed away. She said she didn’t care. I begged her to let me in, to hold me, and she closed the door in my face.”
Gabrielle looked at the judge with eyes full of sorrow and warmth. She felt a tremendous pain in her heart for the judge. Moisture began to cloud her vision as well. She felt confused by of the intensity of the feelings the judge's sorrow stirred in her. She didn’t want to fight them that night.
"Come here,” she said with a broken voice and opened her arms, inviting the judge to take comfort. The judge's towel slipped from her shoulders and dropped to the floor as she silently moved into the younger woman's embrace. Gabrielle wrapped her arms around the judge and held her tightly against her body, rocking her, embracing the quivering shoulders and stroking the damp black hair with a gentle hand.
"Let it out, Xena... It’s OK... Belinda was heartless... It doesn’t matter how pissed she was about you coming home late from work, she should have been there for you when you needed her,” Gabrielle soothed the weeping woman. She couldn’t believe how fragile and sensitive the judge could be. She also noticed that the pain in her own heart didn’t go away. She felt Xena’s arms wrap around her waist and pull her even closer.
"Thank you,” Gabrielle heard the judge whisper in her ear. Gabrielle closed her eyes and melted into the judge’s embrace.
A few long moments passed with the judge and her assistant in each other’s arms. When they finally broke apart, the judge seemed somewhat uneasy and embarrassed.
"I’m sorry,” she said quietly and wiped the tears from her face. "I've never told anyone about Belinda not letting me into the house the day my brother died. I was ashamed, I suppose. I thought I deserved it.”
"Don’t be sorry, Xena. I’m glad that you trusted me enough to share what’s in your heart with me. And you shouldn’t be ashamed, you did nothing wrong. She should have put the disputes aside for another time. A day when someone loses a loved one isn’t a day for petty wars,” she said and smiled, but her expression was serious and a bit strained. The judge’s red luscious lips caught her gaze. Gabrielle could hear the blood rushing in her ears.
The stare didn’t go unnoticed by the judge, who found herself guilty of doing exactly the same thing. An awkward silence descended between them.
"Why don’t we go inside? It’s getting chilly out here,” the judge finally said.
"You’re right, I’m freezing.” Gabrielle quickly agreed and stood up. "What time is it?”
"Jesus, I don’t understand why can’t we shut our traps at night and go to sleep at a reasonable hour. It’s 1:30 a.m.” the judge smirked.
"Are you tired?” Gabrielle asked.
The judge took a few moments to think, "No, not really. Are you?”
"Nope,” Gabrielle answered. As a matter of fact not only did she not feel tired, but she felt exuberant, full of a strange and powerful energy.
"Tell you what, let's go up, take a shower, and we'll meet back down here for a cello lesson?” the judge suggested.
"Cello lesson? In the middle of the night? Are you out of your mind?”
"Relax, it’s not like I have neighbors nearby,” Xena stated. "Come on, It’ll be fun!”
Just what I need, to see her playing the cello after seeing her half naked and wet. Gabrielle frowned in her mind. "What about James?”
"Are you kidding, he slept through an earthquake that scored 4.6 on the Richter scale. No way we’ll wake him up, trust me,” the judge replied mischievously.
"Then I’ll see you in a short while,” smiled Gabrielle and began to go up the stairs wondering whether the judge was staring at her backside... which she was.
A short while later they met back down in the main-hall. Gabrielle was wearing boxer shorts and a silk shirt that belonged to the judge and was visibly too big for her.
Damn, she looks too good in my shirt, thought the judge.
"And we meet again," the judge smirked.
"Yeah," Gabrielle felt a little bashful. She wasn't sure why. She guessed it had something to do with the fact that it was very late at night, she was wearing silk, and the judge was openly appraising her. "So, shall we begin?"
"Sure, sit down in this chair," the judge motioned her to the old wooden chair that was positioned in the middle of the main hall, opposite the note stand.
Gabrielle saw the judge taking the cello off its stand. "OK, spread your legs a little," the judge said casually. A little too casually, perhaps. Gabrielle's heart skipped a beat that she couldn't account for. "Now, let the cello sit comfortably between them."
The judge pinned the cello into the small hole in the floor to keep it steady and leaned the neck of the instrument on Gabrielle's shoulders, placing it gently between her legs.
"Here's the bowl," the dark woman guided Gabrielle. "It goes in your right hand. Hold it like this and mind your wrist, it has to be loose," the judge showed her and Gabrielle did as instructed.
"Very well. Now I'm going to teach you the Do Re Mi... You know, the note scale up to the first octave and you'll have to practice it, OK?" Gabrielle nodded and her emerald eyes sparkled with excitement and awe.
The judge went on teaching Gabrielle with amazing patience almost till dawn.
"I think that's enough for one day. You are welcome to practice in my house anytime you want, Gabrielle," the instructor said.
Gabrielle felt a lump in her throat, "You have know idea how much this means to me. You've fulfilled a dream for me, Xena, Thank you."
"You’re welcome," the judge smiled.
"I fell in love with this instrument when I first heard Brahms' first sonata for piano and cello. I remember closing my eyes and imagining I was the one that played the cello," Gabrielle reflected, still holding the instrument between her thighs.
"I rarely play it because it always makes me cry," the judge admitted under her breath. "Sharon bought me a CD with only the piano part on it so that it'll accompany my cello."
"Would you do me a favor and play it for me, now?" asked Gabrielle.
The judge wanted to refuse her, because it was too emotional and personal for her and she couldn't trust herself in that state. But the pleading in Gabrielle's voice and the look in her eyes made it impossible for her to refuse or deny her. The judge set the CD player on the right track.
"Would you like to play it with me?" The dark woman asked.
"I'll show you." The judge motioned Gabrielle to move closer to the edge of the old wooden chair. She shifted her leg over the chair and settled herself behind Gabrielle. Her breasts were slightly pressed against the younger woman's back, her inner thighs pressed against Gabrielle's outer thighs. They both were very aware of the proximity, of the warmth and softness of their bodies. Gabrielle felt Xena's warm breath tickling the back of her head.
"Are you comfortable?” the judge asked.
"Place your hands on my forearms, so that you can feel my movements, only don’t hold them too tight, so that I may play freely.” I must be out of my fuckin’ mind…Do judges have the authority by law to issue a warrant to have themselves committed to a mental institution? Where am I going with this? What am I doing? There is absolutely positively, beyond any reasonable and unreasonable doubt, nothing I can give her. Even if she wanted me, I cannot make her happy. I wish I could just fuck her with no emotion whatsoever, dump her the next morning, and shove the memory of the cheap sex in that special drawer in the back of my head with the little sign that says ‘Dead thoughts and memories storage.’
The counselor nodded and tenderly placed her hands on the judge’s forearms, which were already settled to play. The light feathery touch gave the judge goose bumps and Gabrielle couldn’t help but notice it.
The judge’s body encompassed the younger woman’s body as she played the sounds that surrounded their minds and sliced their souls. As the music reached its peaks of agony and exhilaration, the judge’s body tightened against Gabrielle’s smaller frame. Gabrielle closed her eyes; she put her other senses in charge of absorbing the unfamiliar sensations that assaulted her. The sounds of deep sorrow over a great loss that raised from the cello penetrated her heart and floated around her brain tantalizing her, arousing her, building up the excitement, the ecstasy towards the mental release. The judge’s power and fire engulfed her and brutally stroked Gabrielle’s senses. Her movements, the rhythm of her breath, her passion, her sweet scent, her heat, her presence so close behind her.
Gabrielle knew the music well, and so she moved her body in an amazing accuracy and sync with the judge, as if they were old dancing partners.
For Gabrielle, it was an overwhelming experience. She felt she was being torn by two levels of existence, the physical one and the mental one.
After the storm subsided and silence descended once again on the main hall, Gabrielle felt a great pressure in her chest that made it hard for her to breathe. She was afraid to turn and look back at the judge. Nevertheless, she did so, slowly, tentatively.
She saw that the judge’s shoulders slumped, and silent tears trickled down her beautiful face. The judge smiled.
"I told you it always makes me cry like a…” the judge couldn’t finish the sentence, for Gabrielle’s lips claimed hers. Gabrielle kissed her intently, longingly, and passionately. Gabrielle placed her fingertips on the judge’s jawline while she hungrily sucked and nibbled Xena’s soft lips.
The judge gave in to the intoxicating sensations. Her eyelids became too heavy, and so she closed her eyes, feeling utterly helpless against Gabrielle’s warmth and want. She responded to Gabrielle’s kiss, delicately kissing her back, licking her lips, capturing Gabrielle’s lower lip and vigorously suckling it. The judge didn’t even stop to contemplate the situation; all she knew was the immense need to keep on kissing, not to break the delicious contact.
Gabrielle succumbed to the judge’s eager tongue and she parted her swollen lips, granting the judge access to her mouth’s cavern. The judge’s tongue immediately plunged into Gabrielle’s hot, wet, and accepting mouth.
The judge held her cello in one hand and wrapped her other arm around Gabrielle’s waist in an attempt to increase the pressure between the two bodies. Gabrielle moaned loudly into the judge’s mouth, which caused the judge to kiss her even harder.
Gabrielle’s heart pounded wildly in her chest and her breath became ragged just like the judge’s. Her hands began to stroke Xena’s face. After outlining every curve, she ran her hands to the back of the judge’s head, stroking her hair, entangling her fingers in her coal-black tresses and pulling her close in order to deepen the kiss further.
Gabrielle caught the judge’s probing tongue between her lips and sucked it hard, deeper into her mouth. She felt so out of control in her passion for the dark woman at that moment that all she could feel was the judge’s lips and tongue stoking a fire in her, and the judge’s moaning drove her insane with desire.
Both their tongues were stroking each other now. Both women fed on one another, oblivious to the world, to their thoughts, and to their fears.
The judge suddenly pulled back, tearing her lips from the younger woman. Aside from shock and confusion, Gabrielle’s face showed disappointment and hurt. It occurred to the young attorney that she didn’t feel strange for kissing a woman. It felt rather natural to her.
"You shouldn’t have done that!” The judge rasped, trying to moderate her breathing back to a normal rhythm.
Gabrielle’s chest was still heaving, and her voice a tad bit unsteady, "I know. I’m so sorry, I don’t know what came over me, Xena.”
The judge’s expression turned into one of anger. She pulled herself up off the chair. She settled the cello on its stand and began pacing. "You should be sorry!” Her voice was cold. "I’m not an idiot, you know. It won’t work. I won’t let you pull the ‘let’s seduce the dyke and have my pussy licked properly for a change’ shit on me.”
"That wasn’t my intention,” Gabrielle said, catching the judge’s raging eyes.
The judge kept on pacing in front of the blonde woman who was still flushed from the kissing. "What the fuck were you thinking?”
"Look, you didn’t exactly push me away... You cooperated! You kissed me back!” Gabrielle thought it was time to stop being so defenseless and fight back. She couldn’t understand any of the insanity that took place earlier when she and the judge had been kissing like there was no tomorrow, but she didn’t think she was the only one to blame. Does this mean she’s attracted to me?
"Well, you started it!” the judge accused her harshly.
"Oh, that’s very mature of you,” Gabrielle exclaimed and got up to stand in front of the now-still judge.
"Look, in light of what happened, I don’t think we should be working together. I would appreciate it if you withdraw from the case.”
"Oh, here we go again, the ‘quit the case’ routine... I have a better idea, care to hear me out?”
"Go ahead,” the judge couldn’t sound any less enthusiastic. Why did she kiss me?
"Why don’t you stop running away from things and start dealing with them. I suggest we talk like two adults about what happened between us tonight, how about it?” Shut up! What are you doing? You don’t want to find out what happened between you and her. Ignorance can sometimes be such bliss. You don’t need this mess in your life. Don’t think about it anymore, just imagine it never happened.
"Fine. I want to know why you kissed me,” the judge said.
"I felt..um... an urge... I guess. I can’t really explain it... I... um... feel things to... towards you. You are a very impressive woman, Xena, and you impress me, challenge me, and charm me. I know it sounds insane, and I know we’ve only known each other for several days, but you managed to touch me... deep inside. I feel I want to know all of you. I don’t understand it. It’s new and scary for me.” She paused to take a breath. "And you?” Gabrielle felt her face was burning up. She thanked God that the main hall was dimly lit.
The judge cast her eyes down, not meeting the other woman's gaze "I know what you mean. I think I f... feel the same,” she stammered.
Gabrielle couldn’t contain a smile. She felt a sort of happiness she'd never known before.
The judge cleared her throat, "So what now?”
"I think we should take things slowly,” answered the blonde, looking intently at the judge’s face in order to examine her reaction. What are you saying? Her mind asked.
"What are you saying?” Asked the judge.
"I would like for us to go on and explore the possibility of us together,” Gabrielle said.
You are not a lesbian, Gabrielle. You've never slept with a woman in your entire life. The very thought of it makes you... But I kissed her, and I liked it... I more than liked it. She would only bed you and ditch you once she’s through with you, you know her and her reputation... Don’t do this to yourself. It’s not worth it.
The judge turned and faced away from the piercing green orbs. "Look, Gabrielle, I don’t get involved with straight women. I always got screwed like this in the past. I don’t like the notion of being a test drive for you, especially if feelings are involved here, and they obviously are.”
"Look at me, Xena,” asked Gabrielle.
When the judge didn’t turned around to face her, she asked again, this time placing a warm, comforting hand on the tall woman’s shoulder. "Please, Xena, please look at me. I need to see your eyes.”
The judge surrendered, and turned on her heels. She looked down into Gabrielle’s eyes. She saw something she didn’t recognize there that made her both afraid and elated.
"I’ll never do anything that would hurt you,” Gabrielle’s voice trembled. She had never said anything like that to anyone in her entire life.
"You can’t promise me that,” the judge muttered.
"Yes, I can,” Gabrielle responded with such conviction that a shiver ran down the taller woman’s spine.
No way, Xena. I am not letting you do this to yourself. It’s high time you learned to watch out when your heart is concerned. No relationships with straight women. Am I making myself clear?
"I guess we need some... rules between us, as to how exactly are we gonna go about things... you know... ” said the judge.
She’s willing to date me... YES! Gabrielle’s mind reeled.
"As you know, this is all very new to me, Xena. I have my fears to deal with, so I suggest we take things slowly between us.”
"And by ‘slow’ you mean... ?”
"To wait with sex. I’m asking you to be patient with me, and wait till I feel I’m ready.” In truth, it wasn’t because she didn’t find the judge attractive - she did find her... very attractive, and when she touched her, it made her skin burn, and awoke tremendous desire in her. Gabrielle feared that if the judge had sex with her, it would be easier for the judge to leave her. It would be easier for the judge to restrain her heart, and take the easy way out.
But that wasn’t the only reason. Gabrielle lacked the experience of having sex with women and she didn’t know whether she would like it or not. And what if she and the judge had sex and Gabrielle was be repulsed by it? She'd promised the judge she wouldn’t hurt her, and she intended to keep her promise. She also felt insecure because she wasn’t sure how to please a woman sexually. She realized the judge had lots of experience and she was genuinely concerned about disappointing the judge in this area.
"A..are y..you attracted... to me?” the judge raised the shields around her heart in anticipation of a possible hit.
Why do I sound like an imbecile? I defended murderers and my voice didn’t even tremble, and now I’m stammering like Derek Jacobi in ‘I, Claudius,’ the judge wondered, admonishing herself.
Gabrielle smiled widely both with her lips and her eyes. She took a step closer and closed the gap between herself and the judge. She eased delicate fingers into the judge’s tresses and pulled her head down for a soft kiss.
The judge wrapped her arms around Gabrielle’s waist and pulled her close against her body. At the moment of impact Gabrielle let out a guttural moan that fueled a fire inside of the judge’s stomach. She craved for more contact. Gabrielle sensed the desire in her partner and so she pressed Xena’s head harder down on her and probed her lips with her tongue, demanding entrance. Once the judge gave her entrance, the pink muscle explored thoroughly, making the judge moan loudly.
Xena felt that her heart was about to burst out of her chest. She needed so much more. She needed to taste Gabrielle’s warm skin, to sample her the sweetness of her flesh. She reluctantly broke the kiss, wishing she could be at all places at the same time. Her lips traveled downward, placing many small kisses on her chin and the corner of the blonde's mouth. From there the judge nibbled down the younger woman’s throat, leaving trails of burning wet fire. The more the judge tasted, the more her appetite for this beautiful woman increased. She found a sensitive spot on Gabrielle’s neck just below her ear and began sucking and biting the warm flesh, making Gabrielle shiver with need. The sucking became harder and she broke Gabrielle’s skin. She realized the counselor would wear a bruise on her neck for a few days, but neither of them minded at that point.
"Oh, Xena,” moaned Gabrielle, beginning to feel weakness in her legs, which she feared might collapse under her.
The judge took her exploration upward. She blew a hot stream of air into the younger woman’s ear and felt Gabrielle shudder. She began to lick her ear and nibble her earlobe, biting the tip with her teeth. The need to pleasure Gabrielle was overwhelming. The whimpers and moans that escaped Gabrielle’s throat caused a delicious pain in the judge’s heart and sexual core.
Both women’s desire was raised even higher.
Gabrielle’s head fell back and her eyes were shut tight. She sensed the judge’s hungry mouth beginning its descent, and so she raised to stand on her tiptoes to accommodate the judge, imagining their lips meeting again.
Xena accepted the silent invitation and her hot luscious lips trailed down to kiss Gabrielle’s cleavage. Xena’s lips kissed the tender pale flesh of the valley between the young attorney’s breasts. Gabrielle ceased to breathe. She was excited beyond belief. When she felt Xena’s tongue running back and forth between her breasts, she pressed Xena’s head harder down on her, sensing her nipples harden.
The judge made her way back up and claimed Gabrielle’s lips once more. Gabrielle eagerly captured the offered lips with her own, and began sucking and biting first the lower lip then the upper one, licking it on occasion and driving the judge wild with desire. A low grunt escaped Xena’s throat. She couldn’t believe the effect the younger woman had on her. Xena delved her long fingers into Gabrielle’s short blonde hair and pushed her head harder onto hers. Gabrielle went on hungrily devouring her.
The kissing went on for several long moments, until they were both flushed and breathless.
"We have a long day ahead of us tomorrow,” the judge remarked once her breath and heartbeat slowed.
"I know,” muttered Gabrielle, who was still willingly captive in the judge’s arms.
"We should go to sleep, it’s almost dawn,” the judge said, enjoying the sensation of holding Gabrielle in a gentle embrace.
"You right, Xena.” muttered Gabrielle sounding almost sad. Bummer.
"Come, I’ll escort you to your bedroom,” chuckled the judge.
They both walked to the bedrooms upstairs hand in hand. Once they reached Gabrielle’s bedroom they stopped.
"I’ve invited Tammy and Sharon for dinner tomorrow. You’ll stay and eat dinner with us, won’t you?”
"Of course,” Gabrielle replied. "But after dinner I’m going back to my apartment. I haven’t been there in a while. I have to check what’s up with Tori, my roommate,” responded Gabrielle.
The judge felt a slight sting. "I understand,” she muttered.
"But I would like to spend the next night here with you again, if you’ll have me,” she said.
"Well... Let me think... ” The judge had a mischievous look in her glittering eyes.
"You tease,” Gabrielle snickered and, feeling bold enough to push her luck with Judge Dread in light of her new status, pinched the judge’s rear. "If you won’t have me, I’ll have to sue you for sexual harassment in the workplace as a payback.”
"One look at you and one look at me and the jury won’t buy the sexual harassment bullshit,” the judge chuckled.
"Oh, you think so?” cooed Gabrielle, raising both her eyebrows.
"No,” the judge said seriously. "You truly are a very beautiful woman, Gabrielle,” she said.
"So are you, Xena,”
They kissed again.
"Are you going to tell Tammy and Sharon and James about us?”
"I would like to, but if you don’t want to, I won’t. It’s your call. I hope you're not ashamed of being with me... ,” Xena’s voiced trailed off.
"I don’t mind if James, Sharon, and Tammy were to know, but for the time being, I don’t wish to make it a public knowledge. I don’t want people to know. It’s not because of you, Xena. It just that... there are so many uncertainties and I don’t feel like having the entire judicial system in San Francisco know. It’s no one's business... and there is also the issue of my parents,” Gabrielle explained.
The judge couldn’t help but feel hurt, but nevertheless she maintained her famous, or rather, notorious stoic expression. "I understand.”
Truth of the matter was, she really did understand. What if Gabrielle decided that she didn’t want to live a gay life, or what if she decided she didn’t want to be with her? Why should she suffer the consequences of the gay stigma if she wasn’t sure of anything? Sure it was San Francisco, but it was still far from being LaLaLand.
The judge understood that she herself didn’t give a fuck what people thought of her because she was damn good at what she did and she was stinking rich, but things were different for Gabrielle. She hadn’t yet made a name for herself.
The judge realized she was hurt because Gabrielle wasn’t sure she really wanted her.
What the fuck did I do... It’s going to hurt so bad I can feel it in my guts. She’s going to make me have deeper feelings for her, then she’ll decide she's had enough fun (and great sex) and leave me. I cannot let her in. Remember the eighth commandment - Don’t do shit, unless she does it first. Don’t give her until she gives you.
"Good night, Gabrielle.”
"Good night, Xena.”
Gabrielle disappeared behind the door to her bedroom, leaving the judge alone in the upper main hall.
I guess a game of pool is in order... No way I’m falling asleep tonight, too much on my mind. The judge sighed deeply.
The judge went down for a game of pool. She found it most helpful when she needed to think. She simple shot the balls to the pockets carelessly yet accurately and allowed her thought to run inside her head.
It felt great to kiss her. Well what felt really great was giving to her, pleasuring her. When I heard Gabrielle moan it made me feel wonderful, well more than just wonderful. It made me want to give her so much more than what I had given her. In the past, during my sexual escapades and conquests, I loved to hear the women whom I’ve been with, moan because it made me horny and because of my monumental ego. I’ve always pushed myself to be the greatest in every thing I did, and that included being the best lay in the USA…well, at least in San-Francisco. And when I made them moan it assured myself I was good. With Gabrielle, however, it was different; I didn’t pleasure her for me, but for her.
Gabrielle spoke of uncertainties, and it didn’t make me feel too good. I wonder why. After all it’s not like I’m planing on being with her forever. Knowing myself, I’ll keep that great wall surrounding my heart and shut her out. I just can’t risk it. I have been alone for so many years, I’m not used to taking care of anyone but me.
She’ll get sick of it, and we’ll end up making Cramer vs. Cramer look like a love story.
But I cannot deny that she touches me. She’s smart, gutsy, compassionate, funny, and she’s easy to talk with. She is a good human being. I feel close to her and I feel safe with her like I know she wouldn’t hurt me. She’s honest, and she doesn’t play games. She’s sweet and so beautiful.
I don’t know what I’m doing…where am I going with this. It’s hopeless. I suck at relationships. I don’t give myself. I would only end up hurting her and I don’t wish to do this, not with her. She is too good for the likes of me. She needs someone who will be devoted to her. Who would love her and give her every thing she deserves, and I don’t know how to do this, I’m not sure I’m even capable of doing this.
What is she to me now, anyway? A lover? A girlfriend? A date?
What if she’ll wake up tomorrow morning and change her mind? What if she thinks I’m not worth it? And I know I’m not. What would it make me feel?
But I’m drawn to her.
Why does life has to be so damn complicated.
"Good afternoon sleepyhead,” were the words that greeted her she woke up. Gabrielle felt the winter sunrays warmly stroking her face. Her eyes were still closed and she didn’t see the judge’s eyes traveling along her body. The judge thought Gabrielle looked simply heart stealing when she wakes up. She seemed adorable and perhaps a little vulnerable.
Gabrielle opened her eyes and sight of Xena sitting next to her on the bed was the first thing registered in her mind.
"What time is it?” Gabrielle asked in a sleepy voice. She hadn’t had much sleep the night before. She was too occupied with thinking about every thing that had happened between her and the judge, contemplating the pros and cons.
"It’s time to get up, it’s 3:00 p.m. already. I would like to do some work before Sharon and Tammy gets here at around 8:00.” The judge said and placed a tray on over Gabrielle’s lying figure. The tray was loaded with two cups of coffee, some toasts and scrambled eggs.
"Ummm…breakfast in bed, I’m impressed.” Smirked Gabrielle and a mischievous glint sparkled in her eyes. "You know what I like,”
The judge smiled. "Are you sure that the ‘breakfast in bed’ concept is not too fast for you?” She asked a little skittish, and sent her hand to move her straying lock of hair from Gabrielle’s face. It’s amazing how casual I feel with her.
"No, silly,” chuckled the young yawning attorney. "It’s just right…on second thought…”
The judge’s face tried to hide a panic attack.
"It would have been perfect if you gave me a good morning kiss,” Gabrielle stretched in the bed, exposing her taut, well-toned, half clad body to the judge, not totally aware of the affect it had on Xena.
Taking it slow, hu? Grumbled the judge in her mind. I guess she’s planning on torturing me…very well Miss O’Connor, two can play this game.
"I’ll tell you what Ret Battler told Scarlet in ‘Gone with the wind’” said the judge thoughtfully, and coaxed an eyebrow.
"What’s that, ‘Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn’?” Gabrielle smirked and sat up straight.
"No, I’m referring to what it told her after the first time he kissed her and after she asked him for more: ‘I think you’ve been kissed enough for one day’…” the judge chuckled with a deep alto voice.
"Well if that’s how you feel then no kissing today,” Gabrielle mustered all her self -control to keep a straight face, and give away the fact that she didn’t mean it. It won’t hurt to see her squirming a little. She is way too confident.
"All day, hu? You must be thinking very highly of yourself, or very little of me for I don’t think you would be able to resist me for that long…” the judge replied. But a slight worry crept into her mind.
"I was just kidding, Your Honor, Please kiss me,” I never asked someone to kiss me before, well except my mom, but that doesn’t count.
The judge smiled. She realized she won the little battle, but what made her smile was the fact that Gabrielle bothered to participate in the battle and not the fact that she won. And so she leaned down towards Gabrielle waiting lips and placed a gentle kiss on her lips. Gabrielle thoroughly enjoyed the warmth, and softness of the judge’s lips, ripples of pleasure ran through her body. She wanted to taste the inside of her mouth and so she licked the judge’s lips as a silent plea to grant her entry, and the judge obliged by parting her lips. The judge felt Gabrielle’s tongue bathe her tongue and her mouth walls with agonizingly slowness. But when Gabrielle placed two small hands on her strong shoulders for support, the judge slightly shuddered. The kiss went on for long moments, while both women tasted the sweetness of each other’s mouths. Throughout the kiss, the judge fought the urge to stork the younger woman’s body that still held the heat from slumber.
They broke the kiss for the need of air. They looked at each other for several moments and Gabrielle could detect that the judge’s eyes were darker, stormier.
"How about some breakfast?” the judge asked.
"Sure,” Gabrielle replied and grabbed a toast in one hand and a cup of fresh coffee in the other one. Gabrielle sniffed the air a little and then turned the toast and looked at its other side. It was burned to a crisp on that side. "My, my, you even made breakfast yourself,” she chuckled.
"Actually, It was James,” the judge responded without blinking.
Gabrielle gave her the ‘Give me a break…’ look, which made the judge choke a little, and get into a fit of a nasty caught.
"Well, OK, OK, James made the scrambled eggs and I made the toast, happy now?”
Gabrielle smiled and placed a quick kiss on Xena’s lips.
She makes me feel so relaxed. She is so comfortable and pleasurable to be around. She makes all the stress with the case go away. Hell, she even made me bring her breakfast in bed…I’ve never done this before… and the playfulness.
"What day is it today?” asked Gabrielle.
"Friday,” replied the judge. "I still wish you didn’t have to go back to your place, tonight.” The judge voice didn’t register above a whisper and she couldn’t look into Gabrielle’s green eyes. I’m gonna miss her…miss her?…damn it.
Gabrielle smiled. "I know, I’ll miss you too, Xena.” Her heart skipped a beat. That was the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me.
"Would you be…um…willing to…consider…I mean, would y…you like to…um perhaps…spe…spend the weekend with…me?” Clo…Clo…Clodius. What’s with the speech impediment again? When she didn’t get a response the judge’s heart generated a heart failure affect.
Gabrielle’s green eyes beamed. "Sure, I will,”
"I didn’t mean anything by it, really, I have no intention of…not taking it slow, I swear. I didn’t mean to imply…” the words came bursting out of the judge’s mouth.
"I know, Xena, relax!” Gabrielle chuckled.
"Would you like to have dinner with me on Saturday night?” The judge questioned.
"You mean like a date?” asked Gabrielle.
When the judge saw happiness in the younger woman’s eyes she regained confidence again. A date? "Yeah, like a date.”
"I’d love that,” Gabrielle replied. I’m going on a date with a judge and a woman.
They were both eating and chitchatting about mindless things. Gabrielle looked into Xena’s eyes.
"Xena, Your eyes are a bit bloodshot and puffy, didn’t you sleep well last night?” she asked and placed a concern hand on the judge’s cheek.
"I’m fine, I just didn’t go to sleep last night, I played pool,” she answered.
"Why? You know, I realize you have many skills, but you’re flesh and blood after all, you need to sleep like the rest of us.” Gabrielle didn’t mean to sound so harsh but she was genuinely concerned about the judge.
"I just had a lot on my mind, is all,” the judge muttered and hoped that would be the end of the discussion.
"Well that’s not an excuse,” retorted the counselor.
"Look, I don’t need much sleep anyhow, I sleep barely four hours every night,” the judge tried to defend herself but the younger woman would have none of that. What’s going on here? Since when do I owe her any explanations? Why do I feel like I do?
She cares for me...
"Well in that case, you leave me no choice. Starting Saturday, you and I are sleeping together in the same bed.” Gabrielle informed her, and by the way she sounded she wasn’t going to leave the judge any options.
"No way!” The judge exclaimed. She wants to get into your bed, you moron…where is your head, Lawless? But the judge knew deep down inside her that sleeping together in the same bed scared her because it was too intimate for her. In the past, she had brought women to her bed as a trophy, a conquest to fuck and cast away. None of these women had slept beside her throughout the night. Once the sex had been over, the judge had called the night’s sexual entertainment’s a cab and that was the end of it.
Gabrielle couldn’t but feel hurt from the judge’s reaction. She thought the judge would be glad to feel her closeness, and to cuddle with her as they slept. She did her best not to show the hurt on her face and save herself a farther rejection or humiliation.
"Gabrielle, I’m sorry. Don’t take it…” the judge began.
"You don’t owe me anything, Xena, really. Let’s just forget I said anything, OK?” I thought she would be happy that I’m progressing, that some of my fears are melting away. Was I wrong? Does she really want me in her bed to simply fuck and forget?
You stupid fuck! You lowlife asshole! The judge’s mind admonished. I can’t believe it took you less than 24 hours to hurt her! She was just trying to help you….I don’t want her help. I want her to want to sleep next to me because that’s what she wants and not because she wants to supervise my sleeping habits…Oh , an ego trip again, well excuse me... enjoy the ride.
Then there was a laud silence. Gabrielle felt highly uncomfortable but she began chattering mindlessly about all sorts of things to make the awkwardness go away. It worked…at least for the time being.
When they finished, the judge removed the tray from above Gabrielle’s small frame, and stood up.
"You go and wash up, I’ll meet you in the study.”
Still bossy…I guess it’s in her blood.
"OK, see you in awhile,”
The judge disappeared behind the door. Gabrielle went into the shower and took her bodies off, readying herself to shower, she combed her short hair. She looked at herself in the mirror and than the horror was revealed to her. A big ugly bruise was brutally painted on her neck a little below her left ear. A loud shrieking scream escaped her mouth. Her eyes were wide open in horror. With trembling fingers she tried to touch it, examine it, but she couldn’t bring herself to do it. It looked as if Count Dracula himself fed on her blood last night when in truth it was someone else all together, a giant raven-haired blue-sky-eyed district court judge was responsible for the marking.
What has she done to my neck??? Her mind reeled.
At that point the judge burst through the bathroom door.
"What’s the matter?” she exclaimed, rasping from the running up the stair taking large haste strides climbing three stair at a time. The judge saw Gabrielle staring at the mirror in horror. The huge purplish suction mark was reviled before her eyes. Oh my God… Oh my God… Oh my God… Oh my God… Oh my God…Oh my God…Did I do that? Shit!
"You do realize that you’ll have to stop the screaming routine or you’ll be taking me to an early grave,” The judge smirked.
Rage rolled up in the pit of Gabrielle stomach. "LOOK WHAT YOU DID TO ME!” She yelled, frustrated from the judge casual reaction.
"So I marked you as mine so that the pretty boy from the D.A’s office would know, so what’s the big deal?” The judge fought hard not to laugh and by that making the blonde even more furious.
"How will I be able to be around people looking like that?”
"I’ll give you one of my gulfs, relax!”
It was 8:00 p.m.. The judge and her petite assistant didn’t noticed how time flew by as they were going through the pile of personal records of the D.A’s office employees. The doorbell rang. They both heard Sharon and Tammy being invited in by James.
"Let’s go,” the judge urged and stood up.
Both women walked into the main hall to meet Sharon and Tammy.
"Hi, galls. Lovely weather we had today, didn’t we?” Asked the judge and a funny smile was plastered on her face. She looked a little edgy and somewhat hyperactive in her body movements.
"It’s raining out side, judge” said Sharon, raising an eyebrow. She gave the ‘What’s up with her?’ look to her partner.
"Oh…My…God…Sharon you owe me 20 bucks…come on, darling cough out the money..” Tammy said smiling form ear to ear.
"OK, what’s going on here…are you two playing those stupid bet games again?” asked the judge, somewhat frowned, contemplating in her mind what ever triggered the bet this time, and why did Sharon had to pay Tammy 20$”
"They are not stupid games and just so that you’d know those games add spice to our relationship,” Sharon responded, defending her spouse.
"What did you bet on this time?” the judge asked, nervously tapping her foot on the ground. She folded her arms on her chest, and gave the look of death to Tammy, knowing she was the weaker ring in the chain.
Sharon and Tammy look at one another and after silence agreement Sharon said "We’ll tell you later, Judge Dread”.
Gabrielle understood it was something that the couple didn’t want to say in her presence. She worried it was something bad that they didn’t want her to hear.
Xena exhaled in frustration and unfolded her arms, softening a bit "You know who the two of you remind me of?”
"No,” the couple answered in union.
The judge smeared a wicked devilish grin on her face that made Gabrielle even more smitten with her, "Those two old gissers that sat on the balcony in ‘The moppet show’” she answered, so satisfied with herself. Gabrielle couldn’t contain her laughter. Xena was glad that she was able to make Gabrielle laugh.
"Very funny, Xena. I’ll only tell you this: ‘What comes around goes around’” spat Sharon, all in good mood.
"Bring it on, I’m ready for round two” announced the judge.
At that point all four women heard the door closed.
"Where did James go?” asked Tammy.
"He took my van to the auto-shop” replied the judge.
"Is there something wrong with the ‘fast-luvin’-mobile’?” Sharon smirked. Tammy nudged her elbow into her partner’s ribs on the account of Gabrielle’s presence.
Gabrielle lowered her head and downcast her gaze. The judge felt the blood run out of her face. She knew that her reputation would sometime catch up with her, somewhere down the line. This is just ain’t my day.
"Gabrielle and I have something to tell you,” started the judge. "Gabrielle and I are…well,” What the fuck are we? What happened to the defense attorney’s pray, ‘Our Lord in heaven, please help me keep my mouth shut till I know what the fuck I‘m talking about’. "What I mean is that Gabrielle and I are sort of like…” she gave up and looked at Gabrielle for salvation. And Gabrielle was her salvation. She forgave me and let me off the hook even though I acted like an asshole today.
"What Xena is trying to say is, that she and I have decided last night to try and build a relationship.” Gabrielle picked up where the judge had left off.
"That’s right!” the judge backed her up and felt like a complete idiot.
There was silent Building up a relationship? Thought Sharon Judge Xena Lawless? Is this "The invasion of the body snatchers’ all over again. She doesn’t do relationships.
Aside from uttering an "Oh!” and "Good luck” the couple didn’t say a thing on the matter.
It was up to Gabrielle to make dinner since James was out of the house, Sharon and Tammy were guests, and Xena was inapt. The couple at least helped Gabrielle in the kitchen while judge Lawless sat to the kitchen table, observing and making remarks.
Dinner went well. It appeared as if Tammy and Sharon fell in love with Gabrielle. She did her best to charm them, knowing they were good friends to Xena, and she succeeded. Truth be told, they liked her from the very first moment they saw her.
After dinner, Gabrielle and Tammy staid in the kitchen to wash the dishes while Xena and Sharon went to shoot a game of pool.
As they stood by the sink, Tammy washing and Gabrielle drying, Tammy began a conversation.
"So you and Xena, hu?” Tammy gave her a meaningful smile.
"I guess,” Gabrielle responded.
After a short pause, Gabrielle said, "Tammy, I know that Xena is a very good friend to both you and Sharon, and I know that you are loyal to her. And I it’s important to me that you and I became friends, as well.”
"Darling, regardless of Xena, you seem to both Sharon and myself like a great person to be friends with. All we ask is that you’ll be good to her. She has a tendency to go out with bitches.” Then she paused and a grin plastered on her face "When we first met you here, in Xena’s house, Sharon and I hoped that something will develop between the two of you.”
Gabrielle wore a shocked expression.
"Don’t look so surprised. We saw how the two of you handled one another when you were cooking together. We saw the spark,”
Here’s that word again...
"She is an amazing woman.” Gabrielle muttered.
"Yes, she is. And she deserves someone good.”
"I won’t do anything to hurt her,” Gabrielle said and looked at Tammy.
"I know you won’t, not on purpose anyway. I’m sure it all very confusing for you. I mean so far you’ve been intimate with men, and now you’re being intimate with a woman.”
"W... we ha... haven’t... been in... intimate, yet,” Gabrielle stummered and downcasted her eyes.
"Oh, I’m such an idiot. I assumed that... I’m sorry,” Tammy blushed and couldn’t meet Gabrielle’s eyes. How come Xena failed to nail her? What is this world coming to? There goes a legend... What is going on here?
"You shouldn’t really. Things are a little complicated, for both Xena and me,” Gabrielle dismissed.
"Of course they are.” Tammy said, "I remember how it felt like being in your shoes, being all confused about my sexual orientation and all the fears. Listen, I want you to know that if you need to talk don’t hesitate. If you have any questions or if you need someone to convey your thoughts and feelings, I’m here for you as a friend. I wouldn’t tell Xena anything of you wouldn’t want me to tell her.”
"Thank you, Tammy. I appreciate it.” The blonde said and placed the dried plait on the stand.
"Of-course I think that the best thing is talking to Xena about these type of matters, but I understand how it might be easier for you to talk to someone else about it.” Tammy handed Gabrielle the last plate and dried her hands.
Then Tammy sighed and muttered "I hope she won’t screw this one up”
Gabrielle swallowed hard.
"Now lets go to the Billiard room and check up on our women,” said Tammy.
Our women... My woman... OK I don’t think I can handle it...