Warning : This story raises the subject of physical relationship between Xena and Gabrielle. If thats not your particular beverage, you have been warned.
Gabrielle sat and stared at her reflection in the mirror. She dabbed at her forehead and cheek with a damp cloth.
"I hate this heat," she said conversationally. "The days are blisteringly hot and the nights are muggy. I lie awake most nights unable to sleep because of the humidity.
"Or is it the loneliness?" she wondered.
"Xena's off doing her warrior thing, and I'm left to wait. Alone," the bard continued. "She does this occasionally. I tell her I don't mind, but I do. It's easier for her, she's used to being alone. Up until I met Xena I'd always been around people. My mother, father and sister had always been under the same roof whenever I'd been to sleep. But since I've been with Xena I've spent more nights than I care to remember alone."
Gabrielle took a sip of water from the goblet in front of her and sighed at the cool trail it left down her throat. "It's not so much being alone, as being without Xena," she carried on "I feel so exposed without her. It's my own fault for being too sensitive, I suppose. It's the price some of us have to pay. Those of us that care too much, too easily, are always hurt easier. It's just our nature.
"Not that Xena would ever hurt me, intentionally," she countered her statement. "She can be a bit insensitive at times, but that's just her. Other times she's caring and considerate. Not traits one would readily associate with the Warrior Princess, the Destroyer of Nations."
She gave herself another quick dab with the cloth and took a longer drink. "Though how well do I really know her?" she frowned. "Nearly every day I'm with her I pick up a new snippet of information about her. I store all this information away in an attempt to get a complete picture of my companion, and just when I think I'm getting a handle on her something else reveals itself, and I have to reassess my findings.
"How well do we know anybody, though? We all have private thoughts that we keep hidden."
I stop counting at nine hundred and fifty nine. Gabrielle always says she counts sheep if she can't get to sleep, but sheep are hardly fit for a warrior, so I count war horses instead. It doesn't work.
Maybe it only works with sheep?
It's too hot to sleep anyway.
Or is it the loneliness?
I should be used to it, but since Gabrielle and I have become lovers, I miss her when she's not with me. It's my own fault. Sometimes I have to do things on my own which are too dangerous for Gabrielle, though she hates it when I get over protective, or when there are things I just don't want her to see me do.
Perhaps I wouldn't do those things if she was with me at the time? I know I feel like a different person when I'm with her. I find myself doing things I wouldn't normally think of doing. Like laughing.
Nearly every day I'm with her I discover something new about myself. It's as if I never really knew myself until she came along.
It took so long to accept her into my heart, to get used to being with someone again, yet when I'm with her I keep forgetting what it's like to be alone.
the end of this bit. to be continued....
"I don't remember the last time I cried
I don't remember much except lies"
Alone Again In The Lap Of Luxury - Hogarth
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