Disclaimer – Story is mine. Characters are not.
Picture # 15


Warmth leaves so quickly when it is not encased by skin and muscle.
It pours out and only cold remains.
Gabrielle dreads this day. She has fought this moment.
And yet, it is here… on this foreign shore… that the dream ends.

That dream began like a child’s fantasy, wrapped up in magic and naiveté. As a girl, she would run too fast and find her feet sailing. The ground was always hard and her body always got back up.
And danger was a distant thing.
And love was a mystery.
The game was just starting that day by the woods.
With Xena, her bright blue eyes and simple white shift, charging forth and tearing the rules apart.
With Xena, igniting the fancy of a wild village girl, turning the world upside-down with a look.
The dream just fell into reality.

~ ~ ~

You say things I cannot hear. You speak so much with your eyes. If I had listened, if my steps were quicker, if I had not let you out of my sight.

“If I only have thirty seconds to live…”

The drums startle me. And I am running. You said it all, didn’t you? You said ‘I love you’ and you said ‘I won’t leave you’ and you led me on… didn’t you?

“…this is how I want to spend them…”

I am not strong. I don’t want this anymore. I’d give it all up to be back home, in my bed, imagining you and not knowing you. I’d give up this love if it means not to lose you.

“…looking into your eyes…”

No Gods to beg. No solace in another life. No sword broad enough or arrow sharp enough. Nothing stops what I see, nothing protects me from this now… Not even you, my heart and my soul… Not even you.

~ ~ ~

With Xena, broken and battered and bested, reaching out in the night and taking Gabrielle’s hand.
You lied to me…
With Xena, setting a wild village girl on fire, naked limbs and exposed soul.
You made promises…
With Xena, cutting sharp and leaving wounds, love as a weapon.
Never to hurt me again…
With Xena, the warmest shoulder… the hardest armor… the maddening contradiction of woman and warrior… lover and fighter…
…How can you leave me when you are everything?

Gabrielle aches for slumber, but the air smells of smoke and of blood.
If she could close her eyes, drag past memories into the forefront and make them real again, then she could slip away. She could ignore this. She could pretend that the dream of Xena is the reality.
With Xena, walking tall and smiling, taking this shattered village girl into her arms.
With Xena… alive… and unending…


Story by: SPHEERIS1 
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