part 4

By Shadowdancer

DISCLAIMER: We all know that I didnít create Xena and Gabrielle, so shall we get on with story?

CATEGORY: Alternative Fan Fiction. Although more Fan Fiction and very little alternative.

Scene: Xena and Sirasi are on their way to Paladorís home to find a cure for Gabrielleís illness. Xena rides atop Argo carrying Gabrielle in her arms rather than on a litter that Argo is pulling. Sirasi rides beside her on her horse as they walk their horses at a nice, slow pace.


"Xena, your arms must be so tired after carrying Gabrielle for so many miles. Why donít we get her into the litter?"

"No, Iím fine; I can see her this way. If her condition changes, Iíll know it".

"Xena" Gabrielle whispered just loud enough for Xena to hear, careful not to move too much as she was supposed to be more than half dead.

"Iím here Gabrielle" Xena responded, caressing with her voice.

"Youíre tired, let Sirasi carry me, you will still be able to see me".

"Gabrielle, Iím fineÖ"

"No, youíre not, youíre tired from carrying me, and riding at the same time, (coughs here), letÖlet Sirasi carry me the rest of the way."

ĎGabrielle, I canÖ"

"Xena, please?". Stopping Argo, Xena acquiesced, "She insists that I let you carry her the rest of the way"

"I know, I heard part of what she said." Sirasi had stopped her horse, and held out her long arms to receive Gabrielle, as Xena, having moved Argo as close to Sirasiís horse as she could, slid Gabrielle from her own arms to Sirasiís. It was a tricky bit of business, but Sirasi, as Iíve said before, is a very strong woman, and she took Gabrielle easily. Knowing that she held precious cargo, Sirasi cradled Gabrielle like a baby, handling her very gently; "Youíre alright Gabrielle, I have you, youíre safe. Weíre nearly to Paladorís house, try and hold on okay."

Gabrielle offered her a faint, weak smile as Sirasi urged her horse on trying to limit her bodily movement so as not to jostle Gabrielle. Finally, after what seemed like an entire candlemark later, they finally arrived at Paladorís home. A small house, more like a cabin, than a "house" as it were. Xena dismounted and moved to Sirasiís horse to take Gabrielle again, Sirasi waiting for Xena to do just this so that she too could dismount. When she looked down at Gabrielle, Gabrielle's eyes were wide, staring, and unseeing.

"Gabrielle? Gabrielle, answer me!"

At first Gabrielle didnít move, or answer, and then faintly, she said, "Iím, here", and nothing more.

Sirasi had dismounted and was standing in front of Xena when Xena had found Gabrielle in her catatonic state. "Weíd better hurry, she doesnít have much more time left, she canít hold on much longer." With that morbid prounouncement, Sirasi knocked on Paladorís door.

Part V

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