To Love, To Need, To Desire Part 2
By D.virtue

The next year was quiet, although there was one incident that blew all of them
away. One day Diana and Xena were in one of the villages in one of the farther
provinces just outside of their Realm, it was while they were visiting a
friend of Xena’s that they happened to hear a group of children laughing and
talking excitedly inside of a well built building, it had the kings mark of
approval on it that told Xena that it was under the protection of the king of
that province.

“ What do you think is going on in there?” Diana asked Xena, her curiosity
having been peaked.

Xena glanced down at Diana and saw the way Diana was trying to see the best
way to go and look, and not be seen. A smile came to her face at Diana’s

“ I don’t know, but it’s none of our business, so let’s just go where we’re
suppose to be going?” Xena said with a smirk as she took hold of Diana’s hand
and pulled her along with her.

“ Xena... can’t we just take a look, and then we can go see the king, you know
how much I love to hear children’s laughter, sometimes it seems like forever
since hearing them. Please? just for a moment?”

Xena sighed, and then after a few minutes, she answered Diana.

“ Okay, but only for a moment.” Xena said firmly.

“ Okay, no problem, let’s go.” Diana started to pull Xena towards the window
opening of the building, but Xena held her back.

“ No, we’re not going to act like peeping toms, come on, you want to see
what’s going on, we go in the front door.” Xena scolded gently.

“ Xena, we can't go in there, we would disturb the kids?”

“ It’s either my way or no way, choose?”

Diana started to say something then she sighed and nodded her head.

“ Good, I thought you would see it my way.”

“ Like I had a real choice?” Diana whispered under her breath.

“ Your right, you didn’t. Now come on.” Xena replied to the unintentional
question. Then she pulled Diana around to the front of the building and they
went inside, and down a short hall way where they heard the laughter coming

Xena knocked on the door, and when it opened she was surprised to see the King
inside it.

“ King Jensen, what are you doing here?” Xena asked.

“ Oh, Lord Xena, Queen Diana, I’m sorry, I hope you haven’t been searching for

“ No, we actually just arrived, Diana wanted to look around first, before we
headed to the your castle.”

“ Oh, well that’s fine, so what brought you in here?”

“ The kids, Diana heard their laughter and wanted to see the cause, it’s her
curious nature.” Xena said with a wink to the king.

He chuckled at the statement, and it’s following bantering, as Diana nudged
Xena in the side and proceeded to scold her quietly.

“ Ok, OKAY.” Xena said finally hearing enough of Diana’s scolding.

“ Okay then.” Diana said with a slight pout coming to her lips, but it was
soon replaced with a smile as she heard the outburst of laughter once again. “
What’s going on?” Diana asked whispering.

“ It’s the new teacher, she’s wonderful with the kids, she’s been here for a
few months, the kids love her, and thier parents can’t say enough about how
well behaved and loving their kids are now that she has taken over the
teaching of the provinces kids. She teaches all ages, the knowledge she has is
amazing, and I know when you see her you will be amazed at an obvious
coincident, that shocked me at first, from the name to the looks. She has been
the best thing to happen to this province, I would like my son to win her
heart, but she told me that she’s not interested, she just wanted to make a
difference in other’s lives, and because of her gentleness with my
granddaughter, by my daughter, I thought the best place for her to make a
difference was with the young, and I am pleased to saw, she has not let me
down. Come in and meet her, I can’t wait to see your faces.” The king said as
he moved inside the classroom, and waited for Xena and Diana to come in.

The teacher was kneeling on one knee, explaining something to one of the
students, and then when she asked if the child got it, the little boy grinned
and nodded his head vigorously, and then wrapped his little arms around her
neck and hugged her.

“ Thank you My Lady.” The little boy said as he then let go and went about
doing the rest of his work.

Diana stood with her hand to her chest thoroughly impressed by the
interaction, she even sighed when she saw the hug.

“ Oh Xena, the children love her.”

“ I see, hmmm...” Xena said with a thoughtful gaze on her face.

“ Introduce us King Jensen, I want to meet this wonderful person who touches
the hearts and minds of children in such a way.” Diana insisted.

“ Okay. My Lady, will you join me over here for a moment, I would like to
introduce you to two of my dearest friends?”

The woman turned and headed over to the place where the three stood. Just as
she did, both Diana’s and Xena’s breath caught in their throats, and they both
looked at each other and then at the king who was smiling at the approaching

“ Xena, are you seeing what I’m seeing?”

“ By the Gods I hope not.” Xena answered back using her mind.

The king then looked up at Xena who now had her mask firmly in place and then
he looked at Diana who had a look of a forced smile on hers.

“ Yes King Jensen?” The woman said as she motioned to another woman, obviously
an aid, to attend to the children. She then came to stop in front of the
three. Her gaze steady and sure, and undisturbed by whom she was looking at,
except for the fact of when she looked at Diana, she smiled.

Diana didn’t know what to do, her mouth had now dropped open.

“ My Lady Xena, may I introduce you to Lord Xena The Conqueror, and her
Consort, Diana.”

Xena waited to see if the woman would pretend to not know them, it would tell
her what the clones intentions were.

“ Hello again Lord Xena, Lady Diana, I am sincerely happy to see you both
again, especially you Diana, how have you been?”

“” Diana managed to stammer out

“ I see you’ve made yourself at home here?” Xena said without any affliction.

“ Yes, well, it’s because of Diana that I decided the best way to show my
feelings and sincerity was to pursue the coarse of goodness, I am very much at
peace these days. I work here with the kids, and I help in the hospital, that
I created. The people are very kind, the king has been wonderful, he’s had a
house built for me, and it’s spacious enough for me, yet not to large. I am
happy, and the joy I get from doing for others, especially the kids is a
feeling I hope to never lose.”

“ Do you still fight?” Xena asked pointedly.

“ Yes, but now it’s to protect, I am the head of King Jensen’s army.”

“ What?” Xena said surprised by the news.

“ Yes, who better than someone who’s skill and knowledge are unmatched?” The
King interjected.

“ But King Jensen, so you really think it is wise to turn your army over to a
person you’ve only known for such a short time?”

“ Well normally I would have agreed with you, but the circumstances that lead
to my decision was one I could not deny.”

“ Which was?” Xena asked.

“ Why don’t we go to the castle, and we can discuss all of this over noon
meal, I have an excellent chef?”

Xena nodded her head and then the clone nodded her’s, then the clone gestured
to the aid to come over to her, and then she told her what was going on and
asked her to take over for the day.

The four of them arrived at the castle and after introductions were made to
some of the visiting dignitaries, to Xena The Conqueror, they went to the
Royal dining hall where the servants brought out the requested drinks.

“ Now, answer my question King Jensen, what lead you to put her in charge?”
Xena said getting back to the subject that brought them to the castle sooner
than they had planned.

“ The province was being attacked, and my captain was injured, and when the
army saw him go down they begun to lose their focus, my captain told me that
before he succumbed to his injuries that he had told her that if the invaders
got through then the children would be their target.”

“ So you know the invaders?” Xena reasoned.

“ Yes, they’ve attacked before, sometime ago and they stole our children, then
raised them as their personal slaves. Anyway, after he told her that, she
immediately took his sword, called for a healer to take him out of harms way
and she leaped on his horse and rode with the courage and strength of the Gods
into the fray, by the time it was over, the invaders were either dead, or
dying or captured. When my army returned they were hailing her as the savior
of our children. After getting briefed on everything that had happened and the
tactics employed, and seeing the resemblance to someone at this table I
figured it was the fates that brought her to us, and By The Gods I was going
to do whatever was necessary to see to it that she was happy with her life
here, Thank the Gods, she has been.” The King smiled at the woman sitting to
his left, across from Xena, and Diana.

Diana was just stunned, she just stared at the woman, but whenever the woman
looked at her she averted her eyes. Xena studied the woman’s demeanor and she
let her body tell her if there was any deception going on inside of her. Xena
was surprised to find the only thing that was going on with the woman was that
she still had very strong feelings towards Diana, but outside of that, there
was a light radiating from the woman.

Xena pursed her lips and then when the king raised his glass and asked
everyone to join him in a toast to old and new friends, Xena hesitated for a
moment as Xena the clone raised hers, without hesitation, and Diana waited to
see what Xena was going to do, and when the king said, “ Will you join me in
this toast my friend?”

Xena looked at him, and then back at the woman, and taking hold of her goblet,
she slowly raised it, Diana looked between the two women, and then when Xena
looked at her and gave her approval, Diana raised her’s, and the four of them
took the required drink.

After the meal, the king had one of the servants show Xena and Diana to their
quarters. When the servant closed the door, Diana sat down heavily on the bed,
and then she fell back on it, with a gasp.

Xena looked over at her as she watched the emotions express across Diana’s
face, and then Diana sat up abruptly.

“ Do you realize.....” Diana started, and then looking over at Xena, she
continued. “ Do you realize that we just had a civilized conversation with
that evil harpy?!”

Xena raised her brow at Diana’s angry words, although she understood them, she
found herself no longer able to agree with them.

“ Is she?” Xena asked as she put her cloak on the hook on the door and then
turned and went and sat down on the bed next to Diana, her hands behind her
holding her up, as she looked at Diana, waiting for her answer.

“ Is she what?” Diana asked not sure of what Xena was talking about.

“ Is she and evil harpy still?”

Diana’s brows knitted deeply at the question, and then she said incredulously.

“ Of course she is, it’s the clone?!” Diana said as if Xena didn’t realize who
the woman was.

“ Do you really believe that kitten, or are you letting past events cloud your
vision?” Xena asked studying Diana on all levels.

“ Xena, what are you asking me? Do you think this is all real? I know you
can’t be thinking that?”

“ Why not?”

“ XENA?!” Diana said alarmed at Xena’s words.

“ Diana I felt your emotions from the time we went inside and King Jensen told
us about how wonderful of a woman she was as a teacher, to those through out
the meal. I know you hate her on some levels, but on the other hand you admire
what she has supposedly done with the children, I know how much teachers mean
to you, and to have someone who was as evil as she was, to now be the role
model for those young influential minds, both fills you with joy and disturbs
you, because of your past with her, you have seen her dark side, but here,
she is as light as I am, maybe more so.”

“ No, not more so, but I will admit, she seems to have changed, if only it
were true.”

“ Why do you think it’s not? Wasn’t it you who told me that children have the
ability to see through a phony, no matter how good of an actor or actress they

“ Yes, but....”

“ But what Diana? Everyone of those children all love her, are you telling me
that they are all wrong, just because you don;t want to accept the fact that
she has indeed changed?” Xena asked honestly wanted to know what Diana

“ No, I mean...well I’m not sure of what I mean right now, all I know is I
tried to use my body to see if she was being deceitful.”

“ And?”

“ I didn’t feel any deception, but then again that’s not saying a whole lot, I
mean she is you in those ways, therefore, I could no better determine if she
was being truthful with her feelings as I could with you, if you decided to
shield your feelings from me.”

“ What would make you accept the fact that she’s changed?”

“ Xena why are you pushing me to accept that she’s changed, you know she wants
me? I don’t understand why your standing up for her now?”

“ It’s just that I want you to be honest with yourself, and admit that if I
can change, then it is entirely possible that she can change, she is after all
a clone of me?”

“ I realize that, but Xena, this is a woman who wanted to take over the world,
remember, and have me as her Consort?”

“ So did I, but look at me now?” Xena said calmly.

Diana looked at Xena incredulously, and then turning her head around she took
on a thoughtful gaze.

“ Well?” Xena asked want to know Diana’s response to her question.

“ What?”

“ Answer my question.”

“ Xena I really don’t see the importance, why don’t we just drop it and talk
about something else? I’m sure we cane come up with a wonderful, yet limited
conversation, if you know what I mean?” Diana purred as she slipped into her
seductive mode and turned onto the bed on her knees at Xena’s side, resting on
her heels.

Xena raised a approving brow at Diana’s easy slide into trying to seduce her.
But she wanted her answer. So bringing her hand up to Diana’s chin, and
cupping it, she pulled Diana to her, bringing their faces within inches of
each others, then she said in her own sultry way.

“ Answer my question Consort.” Then seeing Diana’s eyes show their
disappointment, she went on to say, “ When you answer me, then we can change
the conversation to a one?”

Diana pouted, and Xena kissed the sweet pouting mouth, then leaned away and
looked into Diana’s eyes.

“ Okay, I admit if one was to look at it like that, then yes, she could be

“ No, I want to know if YOU truly think she’s changed, and if not, what would
convince you?”

“ Well I can answer that for you, the only thing that would truly convince me
that she has changed would be if you didn’t sense any deception in her, then
and only then would I accept that she has indeed changed, and maybe I would
even begin to change my opinion of her, because out of all the people, Gods of
Greece and seers, your the only one that I trust to always be truthful with
me.” Diana stated assuredly.

Xena smirked and then pulled Diana back to her for another kiss, and then she
said through a tight throat.

“ Any your unfluctuating trust in me continues to amaze me, and fill me with
more love for you than I thought there was room left for.”

Diana blushed a coy type smile played t her lips as she gazed into the deep
pools of Xena’s sparkling eyes. Diana had the overwhelming urge to just hug
Xena, and to her surprise, but delight Xena seemed to have the same urge, just
as Diana went to wrap her arms around Xena’s neck, Xena reached for Diana to
pull her into her arms and the two looked at each other and then chuckled and
then held each other.

“ I love you so much kitten.”

“ And I love you so very much Xena My Love.”

The two just sat on the bed holding each other, and loving with their hearts.
Then after a while Xena asked, “ So do you want to know?”

“ Know what?”

“ What I felt from her?”

“ Hmm....yes. Of course I do.” Diana said playfully expecting Xena to tell her
that she knew the woman had been deceitful.

“ She’s sincere.”

Diana stopped what she was doing to Xena’s leather top, and looked up at her

“ What?” Diana said swallowing hard.

“ I said she’s being honest, I didn’t sense any deception at all, the only
thing I sensed from her was her need and love of you.”

Diana eased out of Xena’s arms as she went to stand up, but found her legs
suddenly weak from the news.

“ Oops! I got you kitten.” Xena whispered as she caught Diana from falling to
the floor.

She steadied Diana on her feet and then watched Diana look around as if trying
to determine what to say next.

“ And your....your sure?”

“ Yes.”

“ my goodness, she changed because of a lie, hmm...well at least she’s
changed, right?” Diana said as moisture came to her eyes.

“ Diana there was no way for you to know that she was being sincere with you
about wanting to change, or the fact that her belief that you loved her, would
touch anything honest in her.”

“ But she was sincere, now and then, and all I felt for her was hate, I didn’t
give her the chance to prove herself, I just wanted her to disappear somewhere
and die, and now it’s me who feel like I could just die, I mean she was mean
to me, and hurtful, but if I was to be honest with myself, I would have seen
then, just as I do now that she was never truly evil towards me, she was cruel
towards prisoners, but even then, the punishment did fit the crimes, they were
just harsh.”

“ Diana are you trying to tell me that you don’t believe she was evil?”

“ Well....I don’t know, maybe she was, but the fact that she is a clone of
you, I should have known the possibility of her changing were the same as
yours were, only her goodness was buried a little deeper.”

Diana then leaned into Xena and sighed with frustration and disappointment.
But Xena was not about to let Diana feel bad about a woman who had deceived

“ Diana, stop it, you have no reason to feel bad about how you treated her, it
was she who tried to deceive you into believing she was me, she bedded you on
that pretense, she beat you at the drop of a hat, and threaten you whenever
you thought about rebelling against her, or Questra. So I don’t want you
feeling like you owe her anything, because you don’t, do I make myself clear?”

“ But Xena?”

“ Do I?” Xena asked curtly.

“ Yes, Yes you do, and your right, I shouldn’t feel bad, after all she started
it with a lie, I just ended it on the same note, right?”

“ Right, at my demanding.” Xena interjected to take the last of guilt from

Diana smiled and then Xena smiled back at her and hugged her again, then
holding Diana out from her at arms length, she then took on a look of, now
where were we? Then without warning, she pushed Diana onto the bed and
removing her leathers, and Diana struggling to remove her own clothing, Xena
then covered Diana’s smaller body with her own.

The two then made love throughout the night, and by the next morning Diana was
somewhat sore, and dragging, while Xena had more bounce to her stride. When
they sat down to eat morning meal with the king and his family, Xena the clone
was also there, she had obviously stayed the night.

“ Good morning everyone, I hope you all slept well?” The King asked of his

“ Hmm...yes we did.” Xena answered for her and Diana as Diana blushed at
Xena’s meaningful smack of her lips after tasting her fruit cup.

Xena the clone caught the meaning also and her eyes shifted to Diana, who was
blushed and when she leveled her eyes on her, Diana found herself blushing
more, and she quickly averted her eyes back to Xena, who had seen the

“ Everything alright?” Xena asked with her mind.

“ Yes, it’s just that knowing what I do, makes it harder for me to look at her
and not flinch.” Diana said honestly.

“ Are you trying to tell me your attracted to her now?”

“ NO! I could only be attracted to you, My Xena. It’s just that I now feel
like I can relax around her, and not worry that any minute she’s going to
whisk me away or something and then let her dark side show itself. Does that
make sense?”

“ Yes.”

Diana then was pulled to Xena and Xena kissed her passionately in front of
everyone. Diana blushed fiercely, but held on to Xena until Xena let go, and
then a loving smile came to both of their faces. They then turned their
attention back to the table, only to find the king and his wife smiling
brightly at them, and the son looking longingly at Xena the clone, and the
daughter listening to her daughter as she excitedly delighted in the
expression, and Xena the clone, looking at Diana, with tenderness, and yet
there was something else in her eyes, a sadness, a need, one that she would
never have fulfilled, Diana saw it, and she instantly looked at Xena who was
now engaged in conversation with the King.

Diana glanced back across the table at Xena and saw her still looking at her.
Diana averted her eyes again, and then looking into her plate, she picked up a
grape and just as she was about to pop it into her mouth, she heard Xena the
clone’s voice.

“ Lord Xena, how long do you and Diana plan on being in the province?”

“ We came for a brief visit and we have some business to discuss and then we
would be heading back. Why?”

“ Well I would love to have the two of you over for evening meal today?”

“ I don’t know if that’s a good idea.” Xena said flatly.

“ Oh, go on, it’ll give the three of you a chance to catch up, I insist.” The
King said firmly.

Xena glanced at him and rendered him a polite smile, then looked back at Xena
and with a slight nod of her head she agreed. Diana’s eyes went wide with the
exchange, and she couldn’t contain herself.

“ My Lord may I speak with you alone for a moment? Excuse of Your Majesties.”
Diana said as she quickly grabbed Xena by her wrist and begun pulling her from
her seat.

“ Excuse us for a moment, it seems my Consort has something she has to tell
me?” Xena said as she glided out of her chair and was summarily whisked out of
the dining hall.

Once they were away from it, Diana turned to Xena and with exaggerating hand
gestures, she laid into Xena.

“ What do you mean by agreeing to have ANY meal with her?!”

“ Diana calm down, what else could I have done?”

“ Well, I don’t know let’s see....refused?!” Diana said somewhat with an edge.

Xena’s eyes narrowed slightly, and Diana turned away to avoid looking into the
eyes, that were now looking with warning upon her.

“ I just don’t understand?” Diana said turning around after taking a few
moments to calm down.

“ That’s better, Xena said telling Diana she was noticing her behavior.
Anyway, it’ll give us both a chance to see her out of the light of others
watching her, and her being on guard, although I didn’t sense that she was. I
really believe she just wants to prove herself to you, that she has truly

“ But what if she really hasn’t, what if she has a trap laid out for us?”

“ Well it will tell us she has been lying, and that not even I can trust my
senses.” Xena said with a smirk.

“ Okay, but if it’s a trap, then your going to hear about it for a long time.”
Diana said resolving herself to the fact that come evening meal, they would be
sitting with someone whom they both once hated passionately.

The two returned to the dining hall and re took their seats.

“ Everything okay?” Xena the clone asked, knowing that Diana was uneasy about
the upcoming get together.

“ Fine.” Xena said simply and then lifted Diana’s chin up to look her in the

Diana smiled and Xena kissed her nose and then once again her attention was
called for by the king. After breakfast Xena the clone excused herself and
told the king she had to get to the school so as to be there to open the doors
for the kids.

“ Very well, Oh, Diana?”

“ Yes King Jensen?”

“ I just had a wonderful idea.”

“ Oh?”

“ Yes, are you feeling up to listening to a lot of prattle with a bunch of
politicians? Or would you rather have some fun, while your here?”

“ Well.....let me see, I wonder which would make more sense? What do you think
Jalynn?” Diana asked of the little girl who would giggle everytime Diana
looked at her.

The little girls eyes went to thinking about the answer, and then she walked
over to where Diana sat and she shyly whispered in Diana’s ear.

“ I’d want to have fun if I were you, it’s fun.”

Diana’s eyes twinkled their amusement, and then she took on a serious look
with a wink to Jalynn.

“ Well your Majesty, after consulting with my advisor here, we have reach a
decision, although my advisor has to go to school, she has advised me that I
should choose to have fun, so.....that will be my decision, lead me to the fun
and fun I shall have.” Diana said with a playful tone.

The Queen chuckled at the blush that came to Jalynn’s face as she hugged
Diana, for making her feel as important as had the first time she had ever met
the little girl. Both Xena’s smiled at Diana’s ability to draw young and old
to her, as well as animals.

“ Great! I have the perfect plan, if it’s alright with Lord Xena?”

“ It’s fine with me, I’m sure your idea will be much more enjoyable?”

“ Well, Diana why don’t you escort Lady Xena to the school and the two of you
can attend to the kids? Isn’t that a wonderful idea? I see how much you both
love them, so, what better way to have fun and leave an impression?”

“ Uh....Oh, well......” Diana said, but then she looked at Xena, who could
only give a subtle shrug of her shoulder, and then said, “ it’s up to you

“ well, I wouldn’t want to get in the way or be a distraction or anything?”
Diana said trying to come up a legitimate reason as to not go.

“ Oh, you wouldn’t Diana, I can assure you, and it would be fun to have you
assist me with them.”

“ But...”

“ Please come, please come Diana?” Jalynn now threw in her bit.

Diana looked down at her and with a resigned look of both tenderness and fear,
she answered her.

“ Okay, of course I will go.” Diana said with a smile for the little girl who
now hugged her again, but both Xena’s felt Diana’s anxiety.

“ Wonderful, well Diana, shall we go, it’s a few candlemarks before school
starts, but I can go over the plans with you what I want to do with them

“ Of course.” Diana said fear showing in her eyes, only obvious to both

“ Alright, Jalynn, we’ll see you in a bit, don’t be late, you know how I feel
about tardiness?”

“ Yes Lady Xena, I won’t be.”

“ Good.” Xena then turned from the table and headed for the door.

Diana leaned over and placing a kiss on her, she sent her a message with her

“ Come as soon as you can, okay?”

“ I will kitten, if you have any problems send me a message using your mind,

“ Yes, you can count on it. Goodness my heart is beating out of my chest.”
Diana said still using her mind as she was released from Xena’s strong hand.

“ I can feel and hear it.” Xena said.

Diana then stood up and headed for the door where Xena was waiting for her.

“ We’re going to have fun Diana, relax.” Xena the clone whispered to Diana.

Diana looked back at Xena who gave her a smile of assurance that everything
was going to be alright. Diana then smiled back bravely, and then glanced over
at the other Xena who was now heading for the outside.

“ We can ride or walk to the school, whichever one you will feel more
comfortable with?”

“ Wad..walk.” Diana managed as she stayed a few steps behind Xena, watching

“ I’m not going to bite Diana, you can walk up here with me, I mean it looks a
little strange for you to be walking so close, yet not, people will wonder
what your intentions are towards me?” Xena said giving Diana the reason for
the strange looks.

Diana increased her pace to catch up and walk beside Xena but a out of arms
reach, although both she and Xena knew that if Xena had the inclination to
grab her, she could. They walked in relative silence during the short trip to
the school.

Xena opened the door and gestured for Diana to go ahead inside first, but
Diana shook her head still leery of Xena’s sincerity. Xena raised a brow at
her and then she left the door open and stepped inside and headed down the
hallway to the room where they had first seen each other yesterday.

Diana followed after her, somewhat concerned that they were the only one’s in
the building, and it was still a few candlemarks before it got light. Xena lit
a lantern, in the front of the classroom and one in the rear, she didn’t open
the curtains of the room just yet, but she went about setting everything up
for the kids, it took her all of 15 minutes to do it, Diana had to admit to
herself that with all the things she had just seen Xena do, that it would have
taken any regular teacher four candlemarks to do. But this Xena was as
efficient as the real one.

Xena then called to Diana to come over and look through the curriculum, and
see if she had any questions. Xena knew that it would only take Diana moments
to read the whole outline and that was the reason for her attending to all of
the things she had to do, because she wanted to have the rest of the time to
talk to Diana. Without any excuse.

Diana moved slowly to the desk, and Xena saw that she was scared so she moved
to the other side of the desk. Diana then went and picked up the outline and
she quickly flipped through it, then she put it down.

“ Do you have any questions about it?”

“ No.”

“ Good.” Xena then moved back towards the other side , and Diana quickly moved
away from the desk to put some distance between she and Xena.

Xena knitted her brows, but she picked up the outline and placed it straight
on the desk, and then she picked up a stack of folders, and at first she tried
to hand them to Diana, but Diana simply moved back. Xena smiled and then
placed half the stack on the table in the row that Diana was now standing in.

She then proceeded to pass out the folders, placing one on each desk. Diana
picked up the other half and did the same thing, while at the same time
watching Xena. Xena noticed that Diana started in the center and worked her
way out to the side, she figured Diana knew that if she had started on the
side like Xena they would meet in the middle.

Xena finished passing out her group and then she went to sit down on the edge
of the desk and watched Diana watching her. Diana finished passing out her
group and then staying where she ended up, Xena gestured to her come come up
to the front.

Diana chewed at her lip, but she moved towards the front, and she stopped
three rolls back from the front, Xena raised a brow and gestured for her to
move to the front. Diana stood fingering at the desk as she looked away from
Xena’s steady gaze.

Xena smirked and Diana saw it and her agitation came out.

“ What’s so amusing? You like seeing me nervous and scared?’ Diana shot with
anger now evident in her voice.

“ Actually I was just thinking how absolutely adorable you are right at the
moment.” Xena said sincerely.

“ Hmmm......really? I ....I mean I remember certain things really ticked you
off about my behavior?” Diana said somewhat taken back by the statement.

“ It’s true there were and probably still are some things about your behavior
that would still upset me about you, but this was never one of them, I think
your absolutely exquisite at the moment, and since the first time I saw you,
only now I can openly admit it to myself, that I appreciate the beautiful
giving person you are.” Xena said opening up to Diana.

“ Why are you telling me this?” Diana asked as she stood by the desk studying

Xena went to move towards Diana, but Diana quickly moved away, and Xena
stopped and then went to sit back on the desk.

“ I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you, it’s just that I’d rather not have to
speak so loudly to you, so I was just going to move a little closer? “

Xena saw Diana’s eyes were wide and she looked like she was ready to bolt out
of the room. Xena heard Diana’s heart racing despite the efforts of Diana to
conceal it.

“ Here, if I move and sit here behind my desk, will you come and sit in the
front roll?”

Diana looked at the distances, and even though she didn’t think it was far
enough, she did agree. Diana nodded her head, and Xena smiled and then moved
to sit behind her desk on her chair. Diana moved t the front and she slowly
sat at the desk.

“ Isn’t that better?”

Diana glanced to her left and right, determining which would be the better
escape route should she need it, then she looked back at Xena and gave a
slight nod of her head.

“ Diana, I’m not going to hurt you.”

“ What makes you think I think you are?”

“ Your behavior, the fear is written all over your face, and your emotions are
running wildly. I just wanted to talk to you, I was so happy that King Jensen
suggested you join me.” Xena admitted.

“ I’m sure you had nothing to do with that?” Diana said suspiciously.

Xena cocked her head at Diana, and then she answered her.

“ I didn’t, it was ALL his own idea. I think it was a wonderful one, I mean
you like kids obviously, and I see how much I like them, and we both love to
hear the laugh, and I know how playful you can be, your like a kid yourself
sometimes.” Xena said remembering the early days before Diana realized who she

Diana sat and twisted her fingers in her hair, a habit that neither of the
Xena’s liked.

“ Stop doing that.” Xena commanded.

Diana instantly brought her hand down from her hair and she made an instinct

“ Sorry.”

“ Just...don’t do that, it bothers me.” Xena said admitting that that was one
of the things about Diana that did bother her.

“ Alright.” Diana said watching the woman to see if she was getting angry with

“ Anyway, I wanted to tell you how much your admitting to me that you did love
me, meant to me.” Diana now felt like the room was closing around her.

“ Uh...Xena, do you mind if I open the windows, I’m felling a little closed in
at the moment?”

“ Of course I don’t mind, but why are you feeling like that? You never felt
like that unless you were holding something back from me, what’s going on

“ Nothing really, I’m just going to go open the windows, okay?” Diana said as
she now went to move to go and it.

“ No, leave them for now, I want you to tell me what your holding back from
me? Xena said now on her feet moving towards Diana slowly.

Diana begun moving away, and then when she saw Xena’s eyes narrow, she knew
what it meant. Diana stopped backing away, as Xena came up on her and stood
towering over her as she kept her eyes lowered, and her head slightly tilted

“ Diana why are you so scared at this very moment?”

“ Because your getting mad at me, and I am trying to convince myself that you
have really changed, but I’m scared that I may be wrong, and your about to
hurt me.” Diana stated deviating from the course of their conversation to make
it reasonable.

“ Tell me you didn’t lie to me, and you have my word I will not raise a hand
to you?”

“ I didn’t lie to you. “ Diana said not looking up into Xena’s piercing eyes.

“ Diana please look at me and tell me that, because right now I am starting to
have doubts about you?”

Diana forced herself to not allow the tears to form, and taking a deep subtle
breath and exhaling it slowly she lifted her head up and looking back in her
mind to the first time she met the clone she found herself able to honestly
answer the Clones question

Diana’s eyes met with Xena’s steady gaze, and at first the intensity of them
shook her, but then Xena caught her chin in her hand and held Diana’s head up,
as Diana trembled as a result.

“ Tell me, did you love me? Or was that just a lie?”

“ It was the truth.” Diana said as Xena searched Diana’s eyes for any lie.

Xena then smiled and let go of Diana’s chin and said with a sound of relief
ringing in her voice.

“ Well good, I was beginning to wonder. Don’t do that again Diana.” Xena said
as she went and sat back in her chair behind the desk, and gestured for Diana
to retake her seat.

“ Anyway, you were saying?” Diana asked bringing up the previous line of
conversation, just to get past her discomfort.

“ I was saying that because of your feelings for me, and mine for you, I
decided that the best way to show you how much I cared about you would be to
leave you alone and let you hear of my deeds from those who chose to tell you.
I figured you would probably start hearing about me in about a year, and then
maybe one day you would take a chance and come and see for yourself?”

“ Well we hadn’t heard anything about you....yet, I’m sure that with all that
you have and are doing here, it won’t be long before it’s all over the lands?”
Diana said with admiration sounding slightly in her voice.

Xena smiled over at her and Diana let a small smile flash on her face.

“ You know that’s the first sincere smile you’ve casted my way since you’ve
seen me?”

“ Actually it’s not.” Diana said remembering her delight at seeing the
interaction of the little boy and Xena, and even the thought brought on a
brighter smile.

“ Really? When was the first time?” Xena asked now resting one elbow on the
table as she sat sideways at the table looking over at Diana while resting her
head on her hand.

“ When Xena and I first came in here, I saw you talking to a little boy
helping him with a problem, and I saw how his eyes lit up the moment he caught
on to what you were showing him, and I saw the love in his eyes at your gentle
nurturing of his newly acquired knowledge, I was honestly touched by it all
and I had this overwhelming need to meet the woman who brought out such a
light in one so young, I mean the only other people whom I have seen that have
been able to touch children so deeply were Xena, myself, Gabrielle and
Questra, and our personal servants.”

“ I remember you were one who loved to teach the children of the palace new
things, and I saw how YOUR eyes lit up everytime they caught on.” Xena said
with obvious admiration for Diana’s own skills.

Diana smiled again, as she played with the top of the table, while sparing
glances over at Xena. Xena sat nodding her head slightly, pleased that she was
now feeling Diana relax.

“ So what do you think you will want to eat later?”

“ I don’t know, it’s up to you, I’m sure whatever you have made will be fine?”

“ Made? Hmmm....” Xena said with an amused glint in her eyes.

“ What?”

“ Nothing, I think I will leave it for a surprise for you.”

“ No, I’d rather you tell me?” Diana said not sure if she wanted to be
surprised by anything Xena had in story for her.

“ Well You seem.....Xena started but then she heard the kids coming, like she
knew she would. Oops, sorry, the kids are coming, have to get ready for them.
Come over here and stand here.” Xena said telling Diana the routine way she
greeted the children, she herself stood up and moved behind her chair, and
stood to her full height with her arms crossed over her chest.



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