SIMILAR FEATURES

By Cruise

Disclaimer: The characters associated with Xena:Warrior Princess belong to Mca/Universal & are used without their permission. The character of Blaise is my own creation & not affiliated with the show. The events in this story do not necessarily follow along

with events that happen in the show.

The vows belong to Shania Twain / Robert John "Mutt" Lange & Polygram international inc/Loon Echo inc. performed on Shania’s album "Come on over". The songs where used without permission & no profit is intended with this story.

Sex: Sexually explicit sex scenes of two consenting adult women. If two women making love offend anyone, than this story is not recommended.

Violence: Some, but not too bad.

Special Thanks: To all of the fans for your support, to Stoley and Monica for maintaining my websites and to Julia for editing the later portions of the story.

Spoilers: References made to The Furies, Maternal Instincts, The Crusader.

Comments are gladly accepted at: Cruise @clububer2000.com. Please reference the story title in the email.

Web addy: www.clububer2000.com

Xena and Gabrielle made their way closer the town Gabrielle couldn’t stand the silence anymore. "Xena...please we need to talk." She pleaded with the Warrior Princess silently stewing.

"About what Gabrielle?" Xena snapped. "What do you want to talk about, huh?" Xena asked obviously agitated with the bard. "The fact that you blindly went off with that fool Najara?" Xena was visibly distressed and picked up her pace as she walked ahead with Argo.

"I’m sorry." Gabrielle replied in a whisper out of ear shot of Xena her green eyes filling with tears fromt eh pain and disappointment she saw in Xena’s blue eyes walking at a much slower pace behind Xena.

The pair drew closer to the town and Gabrielle thought that Xena must hate her for her latest excursion in search of her spiritual quest. Once they reached the town a smile appeared on Gabrielle’s face as the town square was filled with peddlers. "Xena! Let’s do some frivolous shopping."

"No…You know that is not my thing. I am going to get Argo settled do what you want!" Xena answered coldly.

Xena and Argo headed off towards the stables. Gabrielle stood for a moment fighting back her tears. Gabrielle looked up across the square and noticed a familiar figure standing with their back to her. She noticed the figure was tall, lean, muscular, tan, with shoulder length black hair who was wearing wearing black boots, black leather pants with a gray tunic without sleeves. "Ares!" Gabrielle thought. "What’s he doing here? I already paid my debt to him." She mumbled angrily under her breath walking up and grabbing the person’s arm turning them towards her. "What are you doing here?" Gabrielle replied with disgust then embarrassment when she saw the person wasn’t Ares but a woman..

"Excuse me?" The woman asked confused by the blonde’s actions.

Gabrielle was taken by how attractive the young woman was and how she felt as though she knew her.

"I…I’m sorry" Gabrielle stammered with embarrassment. "I thought you where someone I knew".

"Would you like to know me?" She asked flashing an incredibly sexy smile to Gabrielle.

"I am really sorry for being so rude...my name is Gabrielle and yes, I would like to get to know you better." Gabrielle answered with a warm smile reaching to shake the stranger’s hand that took Gabrielle’s hand and lightly kissed it.

"It’s a pleasure to meet you Gabrielle my name is Blaise." The woman answered sexily glancing up into Gabrielle’s green eyes.

Gabrielle blushed and smiled. "Nice to meet you too Blaise". Xena approached and grabbed Gabrielle by the arm. "Ouch! Xena...You’re hurting me." Gabrielle replied unhappily her smile effectively leaving her fine features.

"Let’s go…now!" Xena answered with anger in her voice

"Hey, take it easy here!" Blaise interrupted. "You’re hurting the lady now take your hand off of her!" She warned angrily grabbing Xena by the wrist with such strength that Xena was unable to pull away.

"Let go of me!" Xena snapped angrily wincing in pain but refusing to show that this stranger was causing her pain.

"When you apologize to the lady then I will let go!" Blaise answered.

"Really…It’s not necessary." Gabrielle replied.

"No...it’s necessary to me now apologize." Blaise demanded angrily.

"Do you realize who you are dealing with?" Xena asked warningly.

Blaise pulled Xena closer to her. "I know who you are Warrior Princess and you really don’t intimidate me! "Now...the apology." She demanded glaring into Xena’s angry blues.

Blaise did not waver when Xena struggled to break free and stared Xena down showing no fear of the Warrior Princess. "I’m sorry Gabrielle. Now, can we go?" Xena reluctantly apologized with Blaise releasing her grip on Xena backing away from her.

"It was very nice to meet you Blaise." Gabrielle replied with embarrassment for the altercation, which just took place.

"Same here Gabrielle... I hope to see you again." Blaise answered with a small, warm smile.

Gabrielle had to run to catch up with Xena who had already stormed off. "Xena!...what was that all about?"

Gabrielle asked shocked by Xena’s reaction.

"I...I’m sorry Gabrielle I didn’t mean to hurt you. Let’s go get a room at the Inn and get some dinner." Xena stammered embarrassed by her actions trying to make up for them with dinner.

"Are you buying." Gabrielle asked with a smile.

"Sure." Xena replied in a strained laugh.

Xena remained somewhat quite throughout dinner because she feared if she voiced her thoughts she would hurt Gabrielle. Xena thought about how she felt Gabrielle had betrayed her by blindly following Najara. Xena couldn’t understand why she seemed so willing to just leave her and their relationship so easily to go off with strangers. She felt hurt and angered by Gabrielle’s actions but thought it best to not talk about it until she had calmed down.

"Xena...what do you say we go into the tavern for some port and listen to the music they have playing?"

"Sure Gabrielle." Xena thought maybe a good port would calm her down.

They both entered the tavern to find it very crowded. "Bar keep! Two please!" Gabrielle ordered sidling up to the bar.

Gabrielle thought about Blaise and how attractive she was not to mention the fact that she looked so familiar. She thought about her sexy blue eyes were so mesmerizing. Gabrielle felt guilty that she was so attracted to Blaise with Xena sitting across from her. Gabrielle and Xena made their way to an open table to enjoy the music and port. "Gabrielle...I see someone I know and I need to speak with them. I will be right back."

"I’m not going anywhere" Gabrielle answered disappointed Xena was leaving her. Xena spoke with the man and returned to the table just as the Bar keep brought a fresh port for Gabrielle.

"I’m sorry…I didn’t order this there must be a mistake." Gabrielle replied holding the mug up towards the
Bar Keep to return the drink.

"I know you didn’t order the port because the young lady two tables over bought that for you." The Bar keep answered his eyes shifting towards the person and back to Gabrielle.

Gabrielle and Xena turned to see who sent the port to Gabrielle and noticed it was Blaise. Xena rolled her eyes and shook her head in disgust. Blaise held her mug of port up and smiled. Gabrielle acknowledged her with a nod of the head, a smile and whispered, "Thank you".

"What’s up with that?" Xena asked angrily.

"I’m really not sure Xena, but it was a very nice gesture don’t you think?"

"Oh, yeah. Really nice." Xena answered, noticeably and watched as Blaise walked towards the bar and met her half way. "Back off!" Xena demanded warningly.

"Why don’t you let Gabrielle decide what she wants?" Blaise asked sarcastically flashing her an equally sarcastic grin.

Xena moved back to the table angered by her conversation with Blaise. "Let’s go Gabrielle!"

"But why Xena?" She asked confused and disappointed.

"Because I said so." Xena answered coldly unable contain her jealousy and grabbed Gabrielle to pull her out of the chair knocking over the mug of port on Gabrielle.

"Xena!" Gabrielle replied with embarrassment and anger over how Xena was acting. Gabrielle wiped off her skirt and Xena moved over to Blaise.

"Make sure you stay away from her!" Xena threatened.

"Or what? Maybe you need to stay away from her. Seems to me you need to show her some respect and I would love nothing more than to force you to show it to her!" Blaise smirked straightening her imposing figure in a threatening way as Xena moved closer to her. "Go ahead Xena I’m just itching to drop you in your boots. I would love nothing more than to humiliate you, the Warrior Princess, in front of everyone here as you did your friend!"

Xena stormed out of the tavern towards the stables to get Argo extremely agitated by the mystery woman with Gabrielle not far behind.

"Xena..what are you doing?"

"Gabrielle...I’m going to meet a contact in the next town to finalize some plans." Xena answered mounting Argo with a serious need to be alone. She was so angry that she was afraid of what she might do if she stayed.

"Give me a minute to collect my things.."

"No, you’re staying here.. I think I can handle this myself. Besides, you can stay and try to figure out what you want to do with your life without me being there to cloud your decision." Xena informed her indifferently. She hoped Gabrielle would realize what it was that she wanted…hopefully it was to be with her and the best way for her to figure that out was with a little space.

"When will you be back?" Gabrielle asked worriedly.

"In a couple of days." Xena answered reigning Argo and headed off out of town. Gabrielle watched as Xena and Argo rode off out of site wiping the tears out of her eyes.

"She hates me…I just know it" Gabrielle thought sadly and returned to the tavern settling at the bar.

"Give me a port bar keep!" Gabrielle demanded throwing a dinar on the bar and slapping her hand on the surface.

"Are you okay?" Blaise asked concerned for the younger woman.

"No, not really." Gabrielle answered sadly gulping the port down.

" I’m sorry if I caused a problem but Xena shouldn’t treat you the way she does." Blaise answered apologetically.

"No, it’s not you Blaise this goes back a long ways." Gabrielle answered wiping the tears away that formed in her eyes wanting to change the mood and grabbed Blaise by the arm pulling her towards the dance floor.

"Want to dance Blaise?" She asked excitedly.

"I guess I really don’t have a choice." Blaise answered with a chuckle allowing the small woman to lead her to the dance floor.

Gabrielle and Blaise made their way out onto the crowded dance floor. Gabrielle found it difficult to dance so close and face to face with Blaise as she had an overwhelming urge to kiss her new friend. Gabrielle turned her back to ease the temptation.

‘Why am I so attracted to this woman?’ Gabrielle thought ‘I feel as though I am betraying Xena once again but I can’t help the feelings I am having for her.’ She thought battling her feelings.

Gabrielle moved her body against Blaise and continued to dance enjoying the feeling of her body against Blaise. Blaise slid her hand in front of Gabrielle placing it around her waist and began to grind against Gabrielle to the music. Gabrielle thoroughly enjoyed where Blaise had placed her hand and the way her body was moving against her. Gabrielle slid her hand on top of Blaise’s and put her other hand up through Blaise’s black, wavy hair resting it on the back of her neck.

Blaise leaned down to the shorter woman and Gabrielle could feel her breath on her neck, which excited her. The music changed to a slower rhythm and Blaise turned Gabrielle around to face her. She looked into Gabrielle’s eyes and held her in her strong, muscular arms tighter and began to dance a slow rhythm with Gabrielle.

"You are incredibly attractive." Gabrielle replied gazing into Blaise’s sexy blue eyes.

"That ‘s very sweet Gabrielle, but you are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen." Blaise answered with a sexy smile.

Gabrielle leaned up and kissed Blaise. She pulled away out of fear but realized how much she enjoyed the kiss and wanted more. Gabrielle pressed her lips against Blaise’s again as Blaise’s tongue entered her mouth and they began to kiss more passionately. Gabrielle felt her knees buckle from the overwhelming feeling of ecstasy she felt from Blaise’s kiss.

"Are you okay Gabrielle?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"Yes...never better." She replied smiling delighted by the kiss.

They continued to dance and Blaise began to sing the song to Gabrielle. "You have a beautiful singing voice Blaise. Do you do any singing other than to your dancing partners?" Gabrielle asked with a laugh.

"I sing occasionally, but I like to compose songs or poems more than singing." Blaise answered.

"I love to write stories. I am a bard you know?"

"I gathered that when I saw all of the scrolls in your backpack." Blaise replied with a smile.

"Sorry ladies but we are closing." the Bar Keep replied.

"It is late so, I guess I should head back to the Inn." Gabrielle informed Blaise reluctant to let the devastatingly gorgeous woman out of her arms.

"I have a better idea if you are up for it?" Blaise asked with a mischievous smile.

"Sure what is it?" Gabrielle asked intrigued and happy to not have to leave Blaise’s presence so soon.

"Follow me." Blaise answered grabbing Gabrielle’s hand leading her out of the tavern towards the stables to get a blanket, which was located with her horse.

"Blaise...you have a beautiful horse." Gabrielle answered admiring the beautiful black stallion with a white stripe between his eyes down to his nose.

"Taz meet Gabrielle...Gabrielle meet Taz." Blaise introduced the pair and moving her hand gesturing to her horse that bent his front leg and bowed for Gabrielle.

"That is so cool how did you train him to do that?" Gabrielle asked amazed at the tricks she taught her horse.

"With these." Blaise answered pulling an apple out of the saddlebag throwing it to Gabrielle. "Go ahead and give it to him." She urged Gabrielle who offered the apple which Taz quickly devoured. "I’m all set...I have the blanket so, let’s go check out the stars. I know a really great meadow to view them from." Blaise said with a smile.

"Sounds great" Gabrielle answered excitedly following Blaise out of the stables.

They reached the meadow and stood silently taking in the breathtaking view of the stars. "You’re right Blaise it is a great place." Gabrielle answered in awe of the beauty of the meadow and the view.

Blaise laid the blanket on the ground and they lay side by side looking up at the stars. "Tell me some of your stories Gabrielle." Blaise asked intrigued by the bard.

"I would love to." Gabrielle answered excited at the thought that Blaise was interested in her stories unlike Xena who just didn’t have the time for them or just didn’t care Gabreille thought sadly.

Gabrielle spent over an hour telling stories of her adventures with Xena. "Gabrielle...are you in love with Xena?" Blaise asked staring into the twinkling green eyes highlighted by the bright, full moon.

"She is my best friend and I love her."

"Then why would you allow her to treat you as she does?"

"Well." Gabrielle began to explain. "I have had some concerns with the violence in our life and I have been trying to find some way of dealing with it to were I can be happy and at peace with myself. Unfortunately, my happiness seems to be Xena’s unhappiness. She’s not able to deal with it and she takes it out on me." Gabrielle finished explaining with sadness.

"I don’t know how you could have been around that woman for as long as you have been." Blaise answered with amazement.

"I take it you don’t like Xena very much Blaise?" Gabrielle asked in curious wonderment as to why Blaise hated Xena so much.

"No.. I do not." Blaise replied coldly.

"Why do you not like her Blaise? You hardly know her." Gabrielle questioned Blaise.

"Xena killed my family Gabrielle." Blaise answered sorrowful.

"I...I…had no idea Blaise...I’m sorry". Gabrielle stammered thrown at a loss from Blaise’s statement.

"How could you know Gabrielle? There’s nothing for you to be sorry for, but there is something for Xena to be sorry for." Blaise answered

"Blaise...Xena has changed, she’s no longer the warlord killer she once was and I am sure she would do anything to make up for what she did to your family." Gabrielle explained.

"Now Gabrielle...How could Xena ever make up for killing my family?" Blaise answered with anger and hurt in her voice.

Gabrielle raised up leaning on her elbow as she spoke with Blaise. "I realize that Blaise but she would do something to atone for her behavior. She fights for the greater good now."

"Look Gabrielle." Blaise looked down at her hands. "I would really rather not talk about this anymore it is too painful for me." Blaise answered sadly.

"I understand, but if you do want to continue this conversation I am a good listener." Gabrielle answered with a warm smile. Gabrielle was upset by the hurt she saw in Blaise’s beautiful blue eyes and reached to hold her hand laying back on the blanket continuing to look at the stars.

Gabrielle thought about how she would like nothing more than to ease the pain Blaise felt. She thought about how safe and happy she felt being with Blaise. They both lay there gazing at the stars without a word being said between the two.

"Hey! Gabrielle, did you see that? Gabrielle?" Blaise asked excitedly looking up at the shooting star then over to Gabrielle finding that Gabrielle had fallen asleep.

Blaise rolled onto her side to catch a better glimpse of Gabrielle to take in her beauty as she slept. Blaise softly stroked her long blond hair and gently brushed it from her face placing a soft kiss on her cheek. Gabrielle responded to Blaise’s kiss by rolling to her side pulling Blaise’s hand around her waist to cuddle with her. Blaise snuggled in behind Gabrielle taking in her sweet scent and fell to sleep shortly after.

Blaise woke before Gabrielle and took a moment to enjoy her beauty. Blaise wished she could stay and admire Gabrielle but nature called. As Blaise finished her business and stepped out from the bush she looked in horror to find a man standing over Gabrielle with a sword held to her throat.

"Please...Don’t hurt me take what you want." Gabrielle pleaded with the bandit nervously.

"You are what I want sweetheart."

"Well, you can’t have her." The threatening voice came along with Blaise flying through the air delivering a kick directly to the man’s chest knocking him unconscious when his head hit the ground with a loud thump. "Are you okay Gabrielle?" Blaise asked worriedly.

"Just a little nervous...Thank you Blaise. "Is he dead?" Gabrielle asked as Blaise checked him over.

"No, but he will be out for quite some time...I need to take him to the authorities Gabrielle."

"Alright...Iwill go with you and get cleaned up."

Blaise picked the man up and put him over her shoulder to carry him to the authorities. They both headed off towards town. Gabrielle couldn’t help but think how much she enjoyed the site of Blaise’s muscles rippling from carrying the heavy load. The two entered town and Blaise stopped to face Gabrielle.

"Gabrielle...would you like to meet me in an hour for some lunch?"

"I would love to Blaise." Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"Okay then...meet me by the town fountain," her small smile growing in intensity.

Gabrielle turned to leave but came back and kissed Blaise goodbye. "What was that for Gabrielle?"

"That’s a thank you for last night and for saving my life." Gabrielle replied with a smile.

"Well...I guess I will have to save your life more often then." Blaise answered with a sly grin.

"See you soon Blaise." Gabrielle answered as she headed toward the inn.

Gabrielle finished bathing she realized she hadn’t even gave Xena a thought for quite a long time. The guilt overwhelmed her and she wondered if Xena was safe. She hated that they parted in a bad way and could only hope that nothing happened to her because she would never forgive herself if anything did. ‘Gabrielle...you need to figure your life out and in a hurry’ she thought to herself. She couldn’t deny the fact that she was extremely attracted to Blaise and she wondered why Xena couldn’t be more like Blaise so romantic, caring and loving. Gabrielle dressed and set off to meet Blaise and waited near the fountain for Blaise who came riding up bareback on Taz.

"Hello there...are you heading my way?" She asked with a seductive smile.

"If you have food to offer then yes I am." Gabrielle replied with a smile.

Blaise jumped off Taz.. "Then it’s your lucky day!"

Blaise helped Gabrielle up on Taz and climbed behind Gabrielle wrapping her arms around her to take control of the reigns. They both rode off out of town.

"Where are we going for lunch?" Gabrielle asked.

"A favorite place of mine."

As the two rode towards their destination Gabrielle thought to herself how much she enjoyed how Blaise’s body was pressed up against her own along with her muscular arms wrapped around her.

"I smell the ocean Blaise...Gabrielle observed with excitement...is this your favorite place?"

"Yes it is Gabrielle...I love to hear the crashing of the waves and the smell of the ocean air".

Blaise rode up onto the beach. "Here is our spot Gabrielle". Blaise jumped off of Taz and helped Gabrielle down. As Blaise lowered Gabrielle off of the horse the pairs eyes met and Blaise gave in to urge to kiss Gabrielle. Gabrielle reciprocated the kiss.

They broke their kiss and Gabrielle looked down at their spot.

"This is so incredibly sweet...you made a picnic." Gabrielle replied with a smile.

"I thought you might like a picnic." Blaise answered with a smile.

"I love them!" Gabrielle answered with excitement.

Blaise watched Gabrielle eat and was astonished as to how much food such a small woman could put away.

"Uhmmm...Gabrielle...are you finished yet?"

"Oh...I am sorry...Gabrielle laughed...it is just that I really love to eat!"

"I can see that!" Blaise laughed..."come on."

Blaise grabbed Gabrielle’s hand to help her up and they ran towards the jetty.

"You’re gonna love this Gabrielle." Blaise exclaimed with excitement.

Blaise took Gabrielle’s hand and they made their way out to the end of the jetty where they sat to enjoy the view.

"This is really beautiful out her Blaise." Gabrielle observed.

"Yes and it is more magnificent when the waves crash against the jetty."

"You don’t mean we are going to...." Gabrielle asked nervously.

Blaise interrupted her question.

"No the waves split the rocks and go to the sides but the rush is great." Blaise explained with a smile to ease Gabrielle’s fear.

"Blaise I have had a really great time with you."

"Well... I am glad I could be there you you Gabrielle."

Gabrielle leaned to Blaise and kissed her passionately. Gabrielle lay back on the rocks as the two continued their passionate kiss as the waves crashed against the rocks with a thunderous noise which both Blaise and Gabrielle where oblivious too.

Blaise ended the kiss and looked into Gabrielle’s green eyes..."how does a wonderful person like yourself get involved with a killer like Xena?"

"I have asked myself that same question but Xena has changed and she is no longer the killer you see her to be."

"If you say so Gabrielle." Blaise answered with disbelief.

Blaise helped Gabrielle up off of the rocks.

"Let’s head back...how about a piggyback ride?"

"Sounds like fun." Gabrielle answered.

Gabrielle climbed up on Blaise’s muscular back and was amazed at how strong Blaise was as she maneuvered the pair over the rocks effortlessly and loved the closeness she was experiencing being on Blaise’s back.

They made it back to Taz who waited dutifully for their return. They all made their way back into town.

"Gabrielle I have to attend to Taz and to some errands...How about if I meet you in about 3 hours for dinner?"

"I would love that Blaise" Gabrielle smiled.

"I will meet you in 3 hours at the inn ok?"

"I will be waiting." Gabrielle answered as Blaise kissed her hand.

"Goodbye Gabrielle." Blaise turned with Taz and left to attend to her horse.

Gabrielle decided to take a nice hot bath before her date with Blaise later that evening. She slipped into the hot water and began to wash her body. Gabrielle reflected on her wonderful day she had. She wished Xena could treat her the same way that Blaise had done. Gabrielle finished her bath and slipped on a white sundress, which slightly fell, off of her shoulders.

Gabrielle went out to the front of the Inn to meet Blaise who was standing outside with a flower.

"You look beautiful Gabrielle...this is for you." Blaise handed Gabrielle the daisy she had for her.

"Thank you Blaise this is my favorite flower...it is beautiful." Gabrielle answered with a smile obviously flattered at Blaise’s gesture.

They both made their way to the restaurant for their dinner.

Throughout dinner Gabrielle told Blaise stories of Xena and their adventures together.

"Blaise... I hope I haven’t upset you by telling you stories of Xena."

"No, it has given me a chance to get to know her a little better....besides I enjoy your company." Blaise smiled.

"I should probably turn in for the evening." Gabrielle replied.

"I will walk you to your room if you don’t mind."

"No, not at all."

They both made their way to Gabrielle’s room and stood outside the door.

"Did you enjoy dinner Gabrielle?"

"There is never a meal that I don’t enjoy Blaise." They both laughed.

"I had a fabulous day Blaise and a lovely evening... thank you."

"I had a great time also Gabrielle."

Blaise leaned down and kissed Gabrielle. Gabrielle put her arms around Blaise’s neck and entered her mouth with her tongue for a deep, sensual kiss. Blaise moved the dress down off of her shoulders as she continued to kiss Gabrielle. Blaise slid her hand down and cupped Gabrielle’s breast in her hand to lightly caress it.

"Blaise...please stop. I am sorry. I just can’t do this to Xena. As much as I like being with you I can’t betray Xena this way."

"Why would you feel as though you are betraying her?"

"Well...in the time that we have spent together I have wondered why Xena couldn’t treat me the same as you do and I realized as you just touched me that I want Xena to do that to me. I never realized how much I loved Xena and wanted her as my lover than just then."

"I understand Gabrielle...I just hope she can make you happy because you deserve to be happy...Goodbye Gabrielle." Blaise answered with disappointment.

Blaise left Gabrielle standing in the doorway of her room.

"Blaise...wait.. I am sorry."

Blaise continued out of Gabrielle’s site.

Blaise entered the stables to check on her horse.

"Hello my trusty friend." Blaise replied as she began to brush Taz who whinnied in response to her greeting.

"Blaise...my love!" Aphrodite appeared beside Blaise.

"Hello Aphie."

"What is wrong my sweet? You didn’t fall for Gabrielle did you?"

"I guess...a little." Blaise answered as she continued to brush Taz.

"Oh, my sweet niece...Aphrodite took Blaise’s face in her hands..."She is not the one...Her destiny lies with Xena...that is why I sent you to get her and Xena together."

"You never made mention of that Aphie...you said I would fall in love with a blond woman and find out more about my sister!" Blaise snapped.

"If that is what you wanted in the first place you should have said so!"

"I am sorry my love. I should have explained the plan better. She kissed Blaise on the cheek..."Your love is near but Gabrielle is not her...I gotta go though babe!" Aphrodite vanished.

" I can’t believe she left me hanging like that!" Blaise replied to Taz.

Blaise laid her bedroll down next to Taz’s stall and went to sleep.

In the morning...Blaise made her way towards the restaurant for breakfast and stumbled upon Gabrielle telling a group of villagers a story of Xena. Blaise leaned against the wall, crossed her arms over her chest and decided to listen to the story out of sight of Gabrielle.

"Xena made the fates understand that her father was not dead because in fact, her father was Ares...Gabrielle explained to the villagers...So, she need not kill her mother to avenge her father’s death."

Blaise moved away from the wall and uncrossed her arms to move towards Gabrielle. She grabbed Gabrielle by the arm.

"Gabrielle... what did you say?"

"Blaise...what is wrong?" Gabrielle asked with confusion at the way Blaise was acting. She noticed the shock on Blaise’s face..."Are you okay?"

"Gabrielle! I need to know this story...excuse us folks..Blaise announced to the crowd as she lead Gabrielle away for some privacy..."What did you say about Xena, Ares and her mother?"

"Why?" Gabrielle asked.

"Please! Blaise replied with agitation. "I need to know!"

"Well...Xena was to avenge the death of her father by killing the person who killed him or risk going mad. So, she found out Ares was involved."

"Figures!... Blaise replied..."Tell me about her mother..."

"Her mother killed her father when Xena was 7 years old because her father was to kill Xena."

"Why?...When did this all happen with the furies?...was it recently?"

"It happened a season ago with the furies Blaise."

"That bastard! Blaise shouted...all the lies her told me!"

"What are you talking about?" Gabrielle asked with confusion.

"I hated Xena all of these years when it was him I should have hated!"

"Blaise...would you stop rambling and tell me what you are talking about?"

"I’m sorry Gabrielle...I didn’t tell you the whole truth about my family."

"What do you mean?"

"I was told that Xena killed my family."

"Yes...i know that... but what does that have to do with this story and Xena’s mother?"

"Xena is my sister Gabrielle."

"What? She never mentioned you!"

"That’s because she doesn’t know about me Gabrielle."

"Wait... who told you your family was dead?"

"My father...Ares...God of War."

"Ares is your father? How can you be so sweet, gentle, loving and be the daughter of Ares?"

"Let’s just say it helped that Auntie Aphie...sorry Aphrodite had such a big influence in my life?"

"He lied to me all of this time so, I would kill Xena and then become his representative on earth who will one day take his throne." Blaise shook her head in disbelief.

"That is typical of Ares...but I am confused as to how Xena knew nothing of you Blaise."

"I am in the dark about that too Gabrielle. I will have to find out from Xena or my mother as to what happened."

"No wonder you seemed so familiar to me...you are Xena’s sister! " Gabrielle exclaimed with excitement.

"Gabrielle? My mother is still alive right?"

"Yes...as is your older brother Tarus but not your brother Lyceus I’m afraid...she replied with sorrow...he has passed on to the elysian fields...I’m sorry Blaise."

Gabrielle moved around to face Blaise and noticed she was crying.

"Oh, Blaise. I’m sorry you are in pain from the news."

"I mourn for my brother Lyceus but these are tears of sorrow and of joy...I have a mother, and a brother who are alive and well."

"Yes. You do and a sister too." Gabrielle replied with a smile. "How did you know she was your sister?"

"My father told me who she was and what she supposedly did to my family."

"Gabrielle! Gabrielle!"

They both turned to see whom the shouting voice belonged too. "Salmoneus?! What are you doing here?" Gabrielle replied as she hugged her friend.

"It’s Xena"...he replied out of breath.

"Is she okay?" Gabrielle asked with worry in her voice.

"No, she will be executed tomorrow morning!"

"By the Gods...no!" Gabrielle shouted.

"Salmoneus...how did this happen?" Blaise asked.

"Gods...you look like Xena!" Salmoneus exclaimed with a high-pitched voice.

"Am I the only one that didm’t see it?" Gabrielle asked with bewilderment." Salmoneus this is Xena’s sister Blaise... who Xena knows nothing about... at least we think that she doesn’t."

"Hello...nice to meet you Blaise." Salmoneus smiled at Blaise.

"Salmoneus!" Gabrielle yelled.

"Oh, well... Xena’s contact was a set up for some magistrate who holds a grudge against Xena." Salmoneus explained.

"Gabrielle you and Salmoneus stay here ...I will bring Xena back."

"Blaise I want to go with you."

"No, it’s safer here for you both." Blaise answered adamantly.

"She is definately related to Xena!" Salmoneus replied.

Blaise whistled for Taz who ran up to his master and Blaise jumped up on the horse.

"Blaise...please be careful" Gabrielle replied.

"I promise to bring your warrior princess back to you Gabrielle...I won’t have any trouble because I intend to use my status of the daughter of Ares to my advantage and throw my father’s name around to get what I want!" Blaise smiled and winked to Gabrielle as she rode off to the next town to bring her sister back.

"Wow...think of the dinars to be made off of Xena and her sister!" Salmoneus exclaimed.

"Come on Salmoneus...I need a drink!" Gabrielle answered.

"I could make some shirts, some coffee mugs with the Warrior Princess and her sister on them...yeah..." he thought with excitement for the dinars to be made,

"Drop it Salmoneus...it’s not going to happen!" Gabrielle answered.

"Well, it is nice to dream!"

"Yeah, Yeah!" Gabrielle replied as they both entered the tavern for a drink while they waited for Blaise to return with Xena.

Blaise arrived into the town where Xena was being held to an angry crowd of village people.

"I am looking for the town magistrate can you tell me where I can find him?" Blaise asked as she dismounted Taz.

"Hey...you look just like that demon Xena!" one man shouted.

"That is because she is my sister." Blaise answered.

The crowd surrounded Blaise and before she could defend herself they attacked her with clubs.

"That demon is going nowhere and neither is anyone who helps her." a villager shouted.

Blaise jumped up throwing villagers off of her and drew her sword to defend herself.

"Hold it! ...what is going on here?" The magistrate shouted as he approached the crowd.

"She is that demons sister here to take her back!" one villager shouted.

"Is what they speak true?"

"Yes... the Warrior Princess is my sister and I intend to take her with me." Blaise answered.

"Now...what makes you so sure I am going to let you do that?"

"I am the daughter of Ares...God of War...which makes the Warrior Princess his daughter and I don’t think that the God of War would smile upon your village if you where to execute his daughter...do you?" Blaise asked with cockiness in her voice.

"No...no you are right. ..she will be released at once!" the magistrate declared.

The crowd moaned in displeasure at the magistrate’s decision to release the prisoner.

"Which would you rather have, revenge or the wrath of the God of War on our village?" the magistrate asked the villagers.

The crowd moaned in displeasure and went back to their homes.

"Guards show her to the prison." the magistrate ordered...make sure you inform the God of War as to our cooperation of releasing his daughter." the magistrate asked Blaise.

"I will and I am sure he is pleased that you saw this situation my way." Blaise replied with a sarcastic smile.

The guards escorted Blaise to the prison where Xena was held. The guards opened the cell door allowing Blaise to enter.

"Here is the keys to the shackles." the guard replied as he threw them to Blaise.

"What are you doing here?" Xena asked with disgust at the sight of Blaise.

"Saving your life." Blaise answered.

"I thought you hated me...why would you save my life?"

"I did hate you...Blaise replied as she unshackled Xena...just be thankful Gabrielle only tells stories of you!"

Xena grabbed her by the throat..."you had better not have hurt her!" Xena replied with anger.

Blaise grabbed Xena by the shoulders..."relax ...she is fine and she is with some guy named Sal something or other."

"You mean Salmoneus?"

"Yeah, that’s his name."

Xena let go of her grip on Blaise’s throat..."sorry...i got carried away."

"It is understandable Xena ...Gabrielle is a wonderful woman...i would do the same."

Xena noticed Blaise was bleeding from a wound above her eye.

"Hey...you are wounded...sit down and let me tend to it for you."

Blaise sat as Xena had ordered and Xena began to clean the wound. Blaise was taken by how gentle Xena could be after the stories she had been told of how ruthless she once were.

"I have always wanted this gentleness and caring from you Xena."

"What do you mean?" Xena asked confused.

"Xena...Blaise paused...i am your sister."

"I am sorry but you are mistaken I only have brothers...I did have a sister but she died at birth." Xena answered.

"That baby was me Xena." Blaise explained..."My father...our father...Ares told me he found me after you had killed our family. He led me to believe you killed my family so, I would one day avenge them by killing you."

"That sounds like something Ares would do." Xena answered.

Xena brushed Blaise’s hair back off her forehead and looked into her eyes.

"What?" Blaise asked.

"You are beautiful... and you are my baby sister!" Xena answered with tears of happiness as she hugged Blaise.

"Xena...i have always wanted this from you... even though I hated you for what you supposedly had done to our family...i’m sorry I harbored so much hate for you."

"Blaise you have nothing to be sorry for...Xena took Blaise’s face in her hands...that was Ares’ lies...I would have felt the same way given the situation but we have each other now." Xena explained as she smiled and kissed Blaise on the cheek.

"Xena...Auntie Aphie...sorry...Aphrodite gave me this...Blaise explained as she pulled a ring out of a pouch hidden in her shirt...she found it in my blanket when father brought me to Olympus after my birth...She said she hid it from him to give to me as a remembrance of my family...Blaise handed it to Xena...Can you tell me who this is from?"

Xena looked at the ring and began to cry.

"I am sorry Xena...what is wrong?"

"This ring was Lyceus’...our brother...i gave it to him when he was born and he must have slipped it in your blanket before you where taken away."

Xena began to laugh as she looked the ring over and remembered her brother...I dunked lyceus in the lake because he told me he lost the ring and I was mad at him for it. He could have just told me what he did with the ring and I wouldn’t have been as mad at him."

Blaise moved closer to Xena and placed her hand over Xena’s, which held their dead brother’s ring. She moved her other arm around Xena’s back..."Xena I wish I could have known him."

"He was a wonderful man Blaise you would have loved him as I do."

"Xena I would like to continue the family tradition of giving this ring to my first born child in remembrance of lyceus."

Xena turned and put her hand on Blaise’s face. "That would be an honor for lyceus Blaise"...she hugged Blaise..."now I have a sister to kick around" she replied with a laugh.

"Easy I am part god...i think I can handle my own." Blaise laughed.

"I think it would be a match that no one would win then because if I am truly Ares’ daughter than we would be equals." Xena smiled.

"Xena I want you to tell me why you have treated Gabrielle so badly...Even though you are my sister... I can’t allow you to treat her as you do."

"She is looking for her way in life and I don’t believe I am part of that because she is always trying to go off with others... which hurts." Xena answered with hurt in her eyes.

"Tell me how you feel about Gabrielle."

"I love her with all of my heart...my prayers to the gods where answered when she came into my life and I would give my last breath for her." Xena explained with sadness in her eyes.

"Then you need to tell her that...she needs to know that you love her more than life itself."

"I would like to but I don’t think she feels the same about me."

"She does Xena...very much so."

"How is it that the daughter of the God of War is such a romantic?"

"Same thing as with his son Cupid...we both had the influence of the goddess of love in our lives."

"I am sure Ares loves that!"... Xena laughed.

"Well...Blaise I did the best I could with the wound over your eye but I’m afraid you will have a small scar." Xena explained

"oooh, chicks dig sexy scars Xena!" Blaise answered with a smile.

"Let’s get out of here Blaise." Xena laughed as they left the prison to find the horses.

Xena and Blaise arrived in town to find Gabrielle near the fountain anxiously awaiting their arrival.

"Xena! Gabrielle shouted with excitement at the site of her warrior.

Xena dismounted Argo and hugged Gabrielle... "Gabrielle I have missed you so much".

Gabrielle turned to Blaise..."thank you for bringing her back to me!"

"Who am I to interfere with the work of the Goddess of Love?" Blaise smiled back at Gabrielle.

"Aaah..Xena...Salmoneus said to tell you that the both of you will become a household name".

"What do you mean Gabrielle?" Xena asked.

"I don’t know Xena... he left mumbling something about merchandising you two and making a lot of dinars."

"Typical of Salmoneus!"...Xena dropped to one knee and held Gabrielle’s hand.

Gabrielle you are my life, my love and I dont want us ever to be apart...I want us to be together forever...Will you have me forever? Will you join with me?"

"Yes Xena! Gabrielle exclaimed with excitement...i love you and I have waited for so long for you to ask me that and I feel so stupid for being so blind to our love for one another."

"Sssh"...Xena replied as she kissed Gabrielle.

Blaise smiled and rode off to leave the lovers alone feeling sad that she didn’t have someone to love.

Gabrielle and Xena ended their kiss and smiled at each other.

"Where did Blaise go?" Xena asked.

" I am not sure.. I wasn’t paying too much attention...i was a little preoccupied."

Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"Gabrielle...you know she is my sister?"

"I know everything Xena and I think it is wonderful that you have a little sister!"

"Yes...it is...i always wondered what it would have been like had my baby sister had lived."

"You knew about Blaise?"

"Yes...but we where told by the midwife that she died shortly after they took her from mother to clean her."

"That is terrible for someone to be so cruel to others." Gabrielle answered.

"I have to find her Gabrielle...i don’t want to lose her again."

"I think I know where you can find her Xena."

Xena and Gabrielle mounted Argo for their journey to find Blaise. Gabrielle led Xena towards the ocean.

"Are you sure she is here on the beach Gabrielle?"

"I would bet my last dinar she is out on the jetty."

As they moved closer to the jetty Xena noticed that Gabrielle was correct with Blaise’s location.

"I think I should take you gambling Gabrielle." Xena laughed.

"Xena you should go by yourself." Gabrielle replied as she squeezed Xena’s hand for encouragement.

"How did you get so wise Gabrielle?" Xena answered with a smile to her bard.

Xena hesitated a moment before making her way onto the rocks because she noticed Aphrodite was talking with Blaise.

"Auntie Aphie...why didn’t you tell me that I was taken from my mother after my birth and that my family was not dead?" Blaise asked.

"Sweetie...i had no idea believe me because if I would have known I would have spared you the pain you suffered your entire life for not having your birth family...your father only told me you where his daughter, that your mother died in childbirth and he asked if I would help raise you...of course, I couldn’t resist those beautiful blue eyes and that sweet face of yours." Aphrodite replied as she squeezed Blaise’s cheeks.

"I’m too old for that now...but I believe you Aphie." Blaise answered forcing a smile.

"You are never too old for me to squeeze those sexy little cheeks honey... now, listen...i told you many times over your life not to trust anything your father tells you...He doesn’t care about anyone except himself and that includes his own family!" Aphrodite took Blaise’s hand in her own..."i suggest you forget our family for awhile and get to know your other family...i will always be right here for you at anytime you need me." Aphrodite assured Blaise..."Hello Xena!" Aphrodite replied without looking away from Blaise as Xena had approached them.

"Hello...Aphrodite...or should I call you Auntie?" Xena answered with sarcasm and a smile.

"Aphrodite will be fine warrior babe."

Aphrodite took Blaise’s face in her hands..."don’t look so sad my love it causes too many wrinkles to that beautiful face I love so much...be happy." she kissed Blaise on her cheek and whispered in Blaise’s ear..."you are to find the true love that a family has to offer and your soul mate will enter your life soon sweetpea...goodbye my sweet...i am outta here!" Aphrodite exclaimed as she disappeared.

"Blaise where you going to leave without saying goodbye?" Xena asked.

"I’m not good with goodbye’s Xena and I wasn’t sure you two wanted me hanging around."

"Well,,,i’m not letting you go...i want to get to know my little sister better and I want you to stand by me as I join with the love of my life...will you?"

"I would be honored Xena to stand at your side when you join with Gabrielle." Blaise answered with a smile.

"We need to get going then because we have a long ride." Xena put her hand on Blaise’s back.

"Where are we going anyway?"

"Amazon nation...my intended is an amazon queen!"

"Get out! You’re kidding right?" Blaise asked with a laugh.

"No, she is a queen." Xena answered with a smile.

"You lucky dog...hey, I seem to have a lot of royalty in my family with all of the gods I am related to...now I find out my sister-in-law to be is an amazon queen and my sister is a warrior princess!" Blaise laughed, as did Xena.

"Let’s get out of here" Xena answered.

"Xena"

"Yeah...Blaise"

"I’ll race you to the end...Go!"

They both ran towards the end of the jetty. Xena did a flip, which Blaise matched, and they both landed on the beach at the same time. They looked at each other and laughed.

"I am really going to enjoy having you around Blaise." Xena stated as she threw her arm around Blaise’s neck as they walked towards Gabrielle and the horses.

"Same here Xena!" Blaise answered.

"I am glad to see you are both getting along so well." Gabrielle replied as Blaise approached and hugged her.

"Thank you Gabrielle." Blaise whispered in her ear.

"For what Blaise?"

"For opening my heart to allow my sister to enter into it...Hey, if she gives you a hard time you let me know and I will take care of her." Blaise smiled as she pulled away from Gabrielle.

"I just might have to take you up on that offer Blaise." Gabrielle answered with a laugh.

"Okay, okay let’s get going!" Xena replied.

The trio rode off towards the amazon nation. After riding for a few hours they decided to stop and make camp for the evening.

"How much farther do we have Xena?" Blaise asked.

"Another half a days ride."

"I will get the camp ready Xena." Gabrielle replied.

Blaise and Xena set off for firewood and dinner for the group.

Gabrielle watched the pair as they walked off pushing and shoving each other in a joking way like two little kids. Gabrielle laughed

to herself and was glad to see Xena happy..." maybe I won’t have to do so much fishing with Xena now." she thought with a laugh.

After dinner Gabrielle began to write in her scrolls of the day’s events, Xena cleaned her sword and noticed Blaise was writing something in a scroll she had borrowed from Gabrielle.

Xena moved over towards Blaise..."What are you doing?"

"I’m working on a gift for you for your joining." Blaise answered.

"Can I see it?" Xena asked as she leaned over Blaise’s shoulder to get a glimpse of what she was writing.

Blaise put her hand on Xena’s forehead and pushed her back..."no, you will have to wait until it is finished." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"Come on can at least have a hint?"

"Well...i took the liberty of writing some vows for you to say to Gabrielle at your joining...I can tell that you are not the overly romantic type so, I figured I would help you out and write some for you."

"Thanks Blaise I need all the help I can get in that department!" Xena answered with a smile as she glanced back at Gabrielle noticing she had climbed in their bedroll and was fast asleep..."I think I will join my love for some shut eye...goodnight Blaise."

"Goodnight Xena."

Xena climbed in the bedroll next to Gabrielle and wrapped her strong arms around her bard who in turn snuggled up against her warrior. Blaise followed Xena’s lead and went to sleep.

The next morning after entering the amazon village they where greeted by a group of amazons including the acting queen Ephiny.

"Gabrielle...Xena!" Ephiny exclaimed as a greeting to her friends.

"Ephiny! It is great to see you!" Gabrielle exclaimed.

Everyone dismounted the horses and two amazons took the horses to the stables to be fed and taken care of.

"Prepare lunch our queen has arrived." Ephiny ordered.

Ephiny hugged Gabrielle..."it is great to see you Gabrielle."

Ephiny moved to greet Xena and realized there was a new face traveling with them..."who is your friend Xena?" Ephiny asked obviously smitten with their companion.

"Sorry Ephiny...this is my sister Blaise."

"I had no idea you had a sister Xena."

"It’s a long story but she is back in my life where she belongs." Xena answered with a smile as she looked at Blaise.

Ephiny held out her hand to shake Blaise’s hand who in turn raised Ephiny’s hand to her mouth and placed a light kiss on her hand.

"It is a pleasure to meet you Ephiny." Blaise replied with a smile as she gazed into Ephiny’s eyes.

Ephiny’s breath escaped her for a moment and she exclaimed..."believe me the pleasure is all mine."

Ephiny hugged Xena and whispered..."the God’s have smiled upon your family with good looks!"

Xena smiled with embarrassment... "Well, thank you Ephiny."

Ephiny took Gabrielle’s hand to lead her off..."Let’s eat!" Ephiny replied.

"You know I’m always ready to eat!" Gabrielle answered with a smile as they walked off towards the food hut.

Xena looked at Blaise with a smile and a nod of the head towards Ephiny.

"What can I tell you Xena?...chicks dig me!" Blaise answered with a silly grin on her face and a laugh.

"I think it’s the scar Blaise!" Xena answered with a laugh as they made their way to the food hut to join the women for lunch.

"Gabrielle...tell me...is Blaise spoken for?" Ephiny inquired with a smile and intrigue.

"No...but I must say she is an excellent kisser!" Gabrielle informed Ephiny with a smile.

"Gabrielle! How do you know that?" Ephiny asked with amazement at Gabrielle’s statement.

"Well...we came very close to...well...you know ...but I realized I love Xena and that my heart belongs only to her...oh, Ephiny! I almost forgot to tell you!....we are to be joined!" Gabrielle answered with excitement.

"It’s about time the two of you decided to join. I am looking forward to the ceremony...congratulations Gabrielle." Ephiny hugged Gabrielle.

"Thanks Ephiny."

"Now... I am looking forward to getting to know Blaise better Gabrielle."

"Oh...so you are interested in Blaise huh?" Gabrielle answered with sarcasm.

"You mean you couldn’t tell?" Ephiny laughed.

"It’s written all over your face!" Gabrielle exclaimed with a laugh.

"Gabrielle I have never felt this strongly about someone I have just met." Ephiny explained with happiness in her voice..."I feel as if I have just met my soul mate and my destiny." Ephiny explained as she looked over her shoulder at Blaise who was laughing with Xena..."I hope I’m right because she is gorgeous!" Ephiny laughed.

"Looks are definitely plentiful in their family!" Gabrielle answered with a laugh.

"Oh...i must warn you of your possible soul mate though...she is the daughter of Ares".

"You’re kidding...well, it doesn’t matter to me."

"I am glad you feel that way and don’t hold it against her who her father is because she is nothing like him."

Everyone entered the food hut and sat at the same table for lunch. Solari and Eponon where argueing over who would serve Blaise because both where also smitten with Blaise.

"Ladies...please...you are degrading yourselves...i will serve myself but thank you for the offer." Blaise replied with agitation as she left the table to retrieve her own food.

Ephiny approached Blaise.

"I’m sorry for the way my sisters have made you feel uncomfortable Blaise...it’s not everyday that we have such a prominent and attractive person such as yourself in our village." Ephiny explained and thought to herself "did I really say attractive? How embarrassing!"

"Thank you for the kind words Ephiny but I am no different from anyone else and I would appreciate being treated as such."

"I will speak to them." Ephiny answered.

Blaise flashed Ephiny a smile as she passed by her on her way back to the table.

Ephiny watched Blaise as she made her way back to the table and thought about how attracted to she was to Blaise. She also thought about how dumb she was to blurt out how attractive Blaise is when she was trying to make her feel comfortable. "She must think I am an idiot." Ephiny thought to herself as she joined her friends back at the table to finish lunch.

Xena and Gabrielle excused themselves from the table to retrieve their belongings and to get settled.

"Blaise... I will show you to your hut if you are finished with lunch." Ephiny offered.

"I’m finished and I would appreciate that Ephiny." Blaise answered with a smile.

They both headed off towards the hut Blaise would occupy.

Ephiny thought about how her heart would beat a little faster when she would look into Blaise’s blue eyes and when she would flash a sexy smile.

"By the gods...Ephiny thought to herself..."is this what love at first sight feels like?...I wonder if she feels tha same about me?"...Ephiny was so consumed by her thoughts and trying to steal glances of Blaise without her noticing what Ephiny was doing... she tripped in a hole causing her to fall into Blaise who caught her in her arms before she reached the ground.

"Are you o.k. Ephiny?" Blaise asked with concern.

Ephiny enjoyed the feeling of being in Blaise’s arms but not under those circumstances..."i think so...just a little embarrassed." Ephiny answered.

"No need to be embarrassed I fall all the time." Blaise replied with a soothing smile to ease the embarrassment.

Ephiny tried to walk but stumbled again from the pain in her ankle and grabbed Blaise’s hand to prevent another fall..."ouch!" Ephiny exclaimed.

"Here... you are hurt...Blaise replied as she picked Ephiny up in her arms..."is there a cold spring or lake around?" Blaise asked.

"Yes...on the other side of the village...why?"

"The cold water will help with the swelling and it will make your ankle feel better." Blaise explained.

"Blaise it’s not necessary to carry me."

"Well, there is no other way to get you there considering you can’t walk...besides I really don’t mind having a beautiful woman in my arms." Blaise answered with a sexy smile.

Ephiny smiled with delight that Blaise thought she was beautiful.

"Ephiny what happened?" Solari asked as she approached the two.

"I twisted my ankle in a hole and Blaise is taking me to the lake...she believes the cold water will help sooth the pain."

"Trust me Ephiny it will help." Blaise answered.

"I hope you feel better." Solari answered as she watched Blaise and Ephiny walk off..."lucky woman." Solari said under her breath at the site of Ephiny being in Blaise’s arms.

Gabrielle looked out of their hut and noticed what was taking place with Blaise and Ephiny.

"Xena...check this out!"

Xena looked out at the pair..."Blaise sure works fast huh?" she replied with a laugh.

Gabrielle hit Xena on the arm..."the two of you are like a couple of men with your comments!" Xena smile at her bard.

Gabrielle grabbed Solari as she passed..."what is going on?"

"Ephiny hurt her ankle and Blaise is taking her to the lake to attend to it...something to do with cold water or something like that." Solari answered.

"Blaise is right...it will decrease the pain and swelling." Xena replied.

Solari left and Gabrielle looked at Xena with a mischievous smile.

"Gabrielle..." Xena replied in a low voice.

"What Xena?...Gabrielle answered with a smile..."don’t you think they would make a great couple?"

"Sure... but let it happen on it’s own Gabrielle...it is best not to push it...you may overwhelm Blaise."

"I really don’t think that would happen with Blaise." Gabrielle answered with a smile..."but I will take your advice Xena."

"Promise?" Xena asked as she moved to Gabrielle and took her in her arms.

"Can I help it if I want everyone to experience the feeling of being in love?" Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"No...i guess not." Xena answered as she leaned down and kissed her bard.

Blaise and Ephiny made their way to the lake and Ephiny fought the urge to run her fingers through Blaise’s black wavy hair. Ephiny was unable to keep her eyes off of Blaise and loved the feeling of Blaise’s arms around her. Blaise placed Ephiny on a rock near the water.

"Blaise I really appreciate all of your help."

"It’s no problem Ephiny." Blaise answered as she took off her boots followed by her pants stripping down to a pair of black boxer shorts.

Ephiny looked down at the water to not be rude by staring at Blaise’s incredibly sexy half naked body. Blaise entered the water waist deep and took Ephiny’s boot off to examine her ankle.

"You twisted it pretty good Ephiny but the cold water will help it." Blaise explained as she placed Ephiny’s foot in the water.

Ephiny winced in pain when the cold water touched her foot but felt a little better after she got used to the temperature.

"How does it feel Ephiny?"

"It feels much better...thank you Blaise."

"This water is exhillerating." Blaise exclaimed as she removed her shirt revealing a very muscular chest from Blaise’s strict workout regimen.

Ephiny broke her stare..."i think it is looking better Blaise." Ephiny replied nervously as Blaise stood before her.

"Keep it in there for a few more minutes." Blaise answered as she dove underwater for a swim.

"By the gods I am attracted to Blaise." Ephiny thought to herself noticing the feeling of wetness mounting between her legs.

Blaise exited the water slowly taking in air and she whipped her head side-to-side, then back to remove the access water from her hair. Blaise moved over to Ephiny..."come on in Eph." Blaise asked.

Ephiny loved the way Blaise shortened her name but then again she loved everything about Blaise she thought.

Ephiny removed her skirt down to her undergarments. Blaise lifted her hands up placing them on Ephiny’s sides as Ephiny grabbed Blaise’s muscular arms. Blaise lowered Ephiny slowly into the water. As Ephiny’s eyes met Blaise’s she could no longer contain her lust for Blaise and began to passionately kiss her.

"Oh...Blaise...I aah...I am sorry...I didn’t..." Ephiny rambled nervously.

"I am not offended Eph." Blaise answered as she took Ephiny in her arms and continued their kiss.

Ephiny could feel the wetness between her legs increase from the passion between her and Blaise despite the fact that she was standing in the water. Ephiny ran her hands over Blaise’s chest feeling her rippled muscles, which excited her even more. Blaise slid her hands down over Ephiny’s butt and rested them there as they continued their passionate kiss.

"Ephiny! Ephiny!". a voice shouted as the person approached..."Oh, I am...uh...sorry...i had no idea." the amazon replied nervously.

"What is it?" Ephiny snapped with agitation from the intrusion.

"Well, we have been trying to explain the joining rituals to Xena that they are to be separated before the joining."

"Yeah...so?...you interrupted me for that?" Ephiny shouted.

"Well...you know how Xena is and she is having none of it...she is insisting on staying with Gabrielle."

Blaise exited the water and began to get dressed again.

"I will be right there!" Ephiny replied with obvious agitation.

The amazon went back to the village and Ephiny exited the water to get dressed.

"Is your ankle better?" Blaise asked as she helped Ephiny out of the water.

"I hardly noticed the pain considering the situation." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Maybe we can continue this later?" Blaise asked flashing a sexy smile.

"I hope so." Ephiny replied as she kissed Blaise.

They both dressed and headed back to the village with Ephiny slightly limping from her ankle injury. Blaise reached over and held Ephiny’s hand as they continued their walk sending butterflies throughout Ephiny’s insides.

"Ephiny...I’m a little confused...is Gabrielle the queen or are you?"

"Well, Gabrielle is the rightful queen by right of cast but I take her place as queen in her absence." Ephiny explained.

"That is very impressive being an Amazon Queen Ephiny." Blaise answered with a smile.

"Yes... I guess so... I have never really thought of it that way...it must be impressive being half god."

"It would be if I was half god by someone else other than Ares then maybe I would be impressed."

"Blaise..it’s what is in your heart that matters and if there is good in there than you have to be proud of your heritage." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"That’s very nice and I will have to remember that Ephiny." Blaise replied as she kissed Ephiny’s hand as they entered the village.

"Oh, I would like to throw a party the night before the wedding for Xena... could you assign someone to assist me with the arrangements?"

"Sure...i will assign Solari to help you with the arrangements...what are your plans for that evening?"

"To get my sister very drunk!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

They came upon Solari and Xena argueing about the sleeping arrangements.

"Well...duty calls." Ephiny replied with a smile.

"Ephiny...i really enjoyed our talk today."

"Me too Blaise and thank you for the care you offered my injured foot."

"Now...how could I not assist such a beautiful damsel in distress?" Blaise answered with her usual sexy smile as she leaned down to kiss Ephiny..."until later." Blaise whispered in her ear.

Ephiny smiled as she walked over to Xena.

"Xena please appease us by following the joining traditions that the intended parties are to not see one another until the ceremony." Ephiny asked.

"Ephiny that is ridiculous...i don’t want to spend another night without Gabrielle!" Xena answered agitated.

"Where is Gabrielle anyway? Why is she not handling this matter?" Ephiny asked.

"She is with Eponon finalizing the treaty you have presented." Solari answered.

"Xena it’s only two nights and then you will have every night together for the rest of your lives." Ephiny pleaded with a smile trying not to anger the warrior princess anymore than she already was.

Xena flashed Ephiny an angered look.

"For Gabrielle then?" Ephiny asked.

"Come on Xena you can bunk with me." Blaise offered.

"Alright...Xena hesitantly agreed..."for Gabrielle." Xena turned and headed to Blaise’s hut.

"Oh...Xena...Gabrielle will be staying with me and royal gaurds will be posted outside of our hut to thwart your attempts at seeing your bard before the ceremony." Ephiny explained with a smile.

Xena stopped, raised her hand and shook her finger without turning to Ephiny..."you are really pushing it Ephiny!" Xena snapped as she entered Blaise’s hut.

"Aah...Ephiny...did I hear you correctly? Gabrielle will be staying with you?...What about...Blaise asked with bewilderment.

"I know...i am sorry Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"But what about tonight?"

"I promise I will make it well worth the wait." Ephiny answered as she ran the backside of her finger down Blaise’s face and kissed her gently on the lips.

Blaise turned with a sigh and headed into her hut.

"Xena!...i need a cold bath...these women are driving me nuts!" Blaise exclaimed.

"You’re not the only one who needs a cold bath!" Xena shot back as she jumped on the bed and layed down exhaling a sigh.

After Ephiny cleared up the crisis of Xena and Gabrielle’s sleeping arrangements she ordered royal gaurds to be posted at her hut to keep the lovebirds true to their joining commitments.

"Ephiny!"

Ephiny turned to find Blaise had come back out to speak with her.

"Yes." she answered with a smile.

"Would you be available for dinner this evening?"

"I could make myself available if you would like."

"Yes...i would like for us to have dinner together if you wouldn’t mind." Blaise asked with a smile.

"It sounds delightful and yes I would not mind having dinner with you Blaise."

"Great...i will pick you up in two hours then." Blaise smiled and walked back to her hut.

"Xena...i am having dinner with Ephiny this evening...do you think I can leave you long enough or do I need to stay and babysit you?" Blaise asked sarcastically.

"Very funny little sister but you can trust me...i will not break the traditions...they are important to Gabrielle...so, enjoy your dinner with Ephiny."

"That is a relief to know...thanks."

"So, you like Ephiny, huh?" Xena asked with a sly grin on her face.

"Easy big girl...don’t get too far ahead...i just want to get to know her a little better before I make any other moves." Blaise explained.

"Blaise... Ephiny is a close friend to both Gabrielle and I so, please try not to hurt her by toying with her okay?"

"Xena...it’s not like that...it is hard to explain...i feel very connected to her somehow even though we have only known each other for a short time."

"Well...sounds like dinner is a good place to start." Xena replied as she put her hand on Blaise’s shoulder..."I am going to take Argo out for a run and to work off some of my pent up energy...what do you say we meet after your dinner date and head into town for some port?"

"Sounds like a great idea...i will see you in a few hours." Blaise smiled and thought about how great it was to have a sister to talk to about personal matters and to do things with that loved her unconditionally rather than wanting something in return.

Xena went off on Argo and Blaise headed off to the food hut to arrange the dinner plan. Eponon agreed to follow through with Blaise’s instructions.

"Thank you very much for your help Eponon." Blaise replied.

"Anytime Blaise...especially if it means Ephiny will have some happiness...she deserves it." she answered with a smile.

"I hope I can make her happy."

"You already have Blaise." Eponon answered as she retreated to carry out her dinner instructions.

Blaise went to the stables to tend to Taz. Blaise began to brush her stallion.

"So, Taz...what do you think of Ephiny?"

Taz whinnied and thrust his head forward nodding yes.

Blaise laughed..."I guess everybody likes Ephiny...what do you think of Argo my trusty freind?"

Taz reared up on her back legs a couple of times in response to Blaise’s question about Argo.

"Now...you must be a perfect gentleman until Xena gives the okay with Argo. Do you understand?" Blaise pointed at Taz who whinnied and nodded his head yes again.

"That’s my boy!" Blaise exclaimed as she scratched him under his chin and kissed his nose..."well, you look very handsome. How about me? Do I look okay for my date?"

Taz pawed the dirt in agreement that Blaise looked good and nudged Blaise to get moving.

"O.K. let’s go then." Blaise led Taz out of the stables to Ephiny’s hut.

Blaise knocked on the door..."Ephiny...are you ready?"

Blaise and Taz stepped back and away from the door to wait for Ephiny to exit.

Ephiny exited the hut and Blaise gave a tug on the reigns, which signaled Taz to bow down for Ephiny.

"Thank you for such a wonderful greeting from you both." Ephiny replied with a smile flattered at the gesture. Ephiny rubbed Taz’s nose as a thank you.

"You look wonderful Ephiny."

"Thank you Blaise as do you." Ephiny answered with a smile.

Blaise helped Ephiny up on Taz and climbed up behind her wrapping her arms around Ephiny to take control of the reigns. Ephiny thought of how flattering and romantic the greeting she received from Blaise... not to mention how much she enjoyed Blaise’s arms around her.

Blaise led Taz out of the village to the dinner destination and Blaise thought about how good Ephiny smelled. She also thought about how much she enjoyed Ephiny being in her arms.

They arrived at the lake to find a table set up with dinner and torches surrounding the area for light. Blaise dismounted and helped Ephiny down and lead her to the table.

"This is so wonderful." Ephiny replied with amazement at how romantic Blaise was.

Blaise held Ephiny’s chair as she sat down and pushed her chair in towards the table for her.

Ephiny smiled and thought about how wonderful it felt to be treated in such a manner. Blaise joined her across the small table and sat down for dinner.

Ephiny gazed at Blaise with tears in her eyes.

"What is wrong Eph? Do you not like what I have chosen for dinner?" Blaise asked with worry.

"No it is my favorite."

"Then what is wrong?" Blaise asked as she reached across the table to hold her hand.

"There is nothing wrong Blaise...everything is so right...I have never had anyone do anything so sweet like this for me before...this is so special and I am very touched by everything you have done this evening."

"Whew!" Blaise let out a sigh. "I was worried you hated all of this...I am glad you like it." Blaise answered with a smile.

"I do...thank you."

"A beautiful woman such as yourself should be treated special." Blaise answered with a smile.

"How did you know this was my favorite meal?"

"Auntie Aphie always taught me to find out anything you can about what a person likes or dislikes that you are interested in and use it to your advantage." Blaise explained with a smile.

"Aphie?" Ephiny questioned.

"Sorry." Blaise smiled. "Aphrodite, would you like some wine?"

"Yes...please."

Blaise filled Ephiny’s glass with wine and then her own.

"What was it like growing up at Olympus?" Ephiny asked.

"Well...it could be really great or extremely lonely."

"Really...why?" Ephiny asked.

"Aphrodite raised me as her own child because, of course, my father was not around much and when he was there he was either teaching me things about war or spending his time with women...if you know what I mean?" Blaise began to laugh at her thought.

"What is so funny Blaise...that sounds very sad what you told me of your father."

"Oh, well...you kind of had to get used to his behavior but I was thinking of a time when my father got really mad at me and threatened to make me the god of mischief...Blaise laughed...My brother and I where causing all kinds of trouble running around and breaking things just to piss him off...i guess it was our way of getting his attention even if we did get a good spanking!" Blaise smiled at her memory.

"Blaise I had no idea you had a brother."

"Oh, sorry...i was referring to Cupid...he is my half brother...i also have another half brother named Tarus so, I am told by Xena."

"Cupid?" Ephiny laughed obviously overwhelmed by the conversation...this is all too weird."

"I guess it would be if you are not used to your family members being gods...i am sorry for my inconsideration." Blaise answered.

"No don’t be sorry...i enjoy hearing about them...if you don’t mind me saying this I don’t think you are like your father at all and it’s a good thing Aprhodite took an active role in raising you."

"No offense taken Ephiny...i’m grateful to have had her in my life. She made me keep my perspective on things and taught me about love instead of so much hate like my father taught me...i kind of wish he would have made me the god of mischief instead of his heir to his throne...I was never denied a thing in my life except the love of my father and of course, a mother...i guess I couldn’t have expected much love from a father who is the God of War, right?" Blaise answered with sadness.

"I guess not Blaise...i am sorry you where not able to experience the love of your mother or your father."

Blaise looked down..."yeah, well, what is done is done and now I have a chance to know the love of my mother when I get to meet her...Blaise looked up at Ephiny...did I tell you my nephew is Bliss?" Blaise asked smiling with pride.

"No...but you seem very proud." Ephiny smiled.

"Oh, I am... he is my boy and he is the cutest little kid!...i just love kids!" Blaise replied with excitement, "well, enough about my family." Blaise stood up and approached Ephiny..."would you like to go for a walk?"

"I would love too Blaise."

Blaise pulled Ephiny’s chair out for her and extended her arm for Ephiny who slipped her hand onto as they walked towards the lake.

"Tell me about your family Ephiny."

"Well...i was an only child to two very loving parents." Ephiny explained as she looked up at Blaise and smiled.

"Where do they live?"

Ephiny looked down..."they where killed when I was a teenager."

"I’m sorry Ephiny...we don’t need to discuss it anymore if you don’t want too." Blaise answered as she gaze into Ephiny’s eyes noticing the sadness in them.

"No...it is o.k...they where killed by a warlord who attacked our village and I was rescued by the amazons...Queen Melosa took me under her wing and made me an amazon." Ephiny explained.

"She has done a very good job."

"Yes she did and I am grateful for everything that she did for me...it is unfortunate that she died."

"You are very proud of your amazon nation."

"Yes...it is my life."

Blaise stopped walking and gazed into Ephiny’s eyes. She brushed Ephiny’s hair off of her face..."Ephiny...you have had so much pain in your life...i wish I could do something to take it away."

"You already have Blaise...the moment you entered my life". Ephiny answered with a smile.

Blaise leaned down to kiss Ephiny deeply and passionately.

Ephiny broke the kiss..."Blaise this evening has been wonderful and I will never forget how special you have made it for me."

"I’m glad you feel that way Ephiny."

"Blaise I hope I did not seem too forward this morning at the lake."

"It was not a problem Ephiny...i enjoyed it." Blaise smiled with assurance.

They walked arm in arm back to Taz and mounted him for their return trip to the village. They stopped at Ephiny’s hut and Blaise dismounted first to help Ephiny off the horse.

"I’m sorry to cut the evening short but I made plans with Xena." Blaise explained..."I had a really great time Ephiny...thank you."

"No...thank you...Ephiny kissed Blaise and ran her finger down her face...goodnight Blaise." Ephiny replied as she entered her hut.

"Goodnight Ephiny."

Blaise returned to her hut to find Xena anxiously awaiting her arrival.

"Are you ready to go Xena?"

"Always ready! How was your date?"

"Incredible!" Blaise answered with a smile.

"That’s great... she is a wonderful woman Blaise...let’s get some port." Xena answered eagerly.

They both rode off towards town for an evening of drinks and conversation. The pair stabled their horses once in town and headed for the tavern.

"Barkeep...two ports! Xena yelled as she threw some dinars on the bar and sat at the table Blaise had chosen for them.

The barkeep delivered the ports to the table for the women.

"Thanks!" Blaise replied as she drank her port. "Aah...that is good!"

"Xena tell me about mother. Is she well?"

"Mother is fine and she runs a tavern in Amphibolis" Xena answered as she drank her port.

"Amphibolis is where we are from? What is she like?" Blaise asked.

"She is a wonderful woman who has gone through many hardships in her life but is still able to have a wonderful, loving heart. Her children have always been her main source in life and she would give her own life for that of one of her children." Xena explained.

"What do you mean give up her life for her own child’s life?"

"When I was seven and mother was pregnant with you father came home from war and threatened to kill me along with mother if she interfered."

"Why would a man do that to his own child or wife?"

"He found out that Ares fathered me and wanted me dead. So, mother killed him before he had the chance. She nearly died at my hand because good ole daddy Ares made a bargain with the furies to have me avenge my father’s killer or go mad. But I put one over on daddy by proving to the fates that he is my father so, they took the madness away."

"It amazes me at the lengths father will go to get what he wants." Blaise answered shaking her head in disgust at Ares. "Xena... I think father will leave you alone when I commit to taking his place as God of War.

"Listen, Blaise...i can handle Ares. I don’t want you to agree to something you don’t want. Do you hear me?"

"Thanks for your concern Xena but my destiny is to take his place and I know that. I just have to try and figure out a way to deal with the reality of the need for war to go along with my feelings to not have war. It is confusing but I will have to figure it out somehow. So, are you nervous about the joining?" Blaise was eager to change the subject.

"I am because I want to make Gabrielle happy and be everything she has ever wanted."

"You are Xena...she loves you very much and she wants to be no other place but by your side." Blaise answered with a smile.

"So, tell me about Ephiny." Xena asked with a sly grin.

Blaise smiled as she thought of Ephiny. "She is has a wonderful personality, very sexy eyes, she’s an excellent kisser, and she is drop dead gorgeous in her black skirt!" Blaise smiled.

"I think she is falling for you Blaise" Xena answered.

"Barkeep bring on some more port...we need it!" Blaise shouted. "I think you could be right Xena but an Amazon Queen wants me?" Blaise stated with amazement.

The barkeep brought over more drinks to which Blaise drank hers to half empty out of nervousness from the conversation.

"Stranger things have happened Blaise...look at Gabrielle and I."

"I suppose so...aah..Xena...i have a confession to make." Blaise replied with nervousness.

"I have a feeling I’m not going to like what I am about to hear."

"Maybe not but I need to be honest with you." Blaise answered.

"Hold that thought a moment...i need another drink...bring me two more barkeep!...Xena shouted in between gulps of her drink quickly finishing it...ok Blaise let me have it."

The barkeep dropped off two more drinks which Xena began drinking one of the new one’s.

"I kissed Gabrielle." Blaise replied.

"A kiss on the cheek right?" Xena asked as she leaned in towards Blaise.

"Aah...no it got pretty hot and heavy Xena...but that was it only kissing nothing else." Blaise tried to reassure Xena.

Xena punched Blaise in the mouth knocking her out of the chair.

"Hey...none of that in here." The barkeep shouted.

"It’s ok we are family." Xena shot back.

Blaise reached up to check her mouth, which was filled with blood. Blaise spit the blood out on the ground in front of Xena as she sat back in her chair and wiped the blood off of her mouth.

"Do you feel better now?" Blaise asked.

"No, not really are you ok?"

"I’m fine you just caught me off gaurd...I hope you are not mad at Gabrielle because when things got more intense she put a stop to it because she loves you."

"I know... I don’t blame either of you." Xena answered as she looked down into her mug.

"Then why did you hit me?" Blaise shouted with a laugh.

"It was just reflex Blaise I am sorry...i blame myself for being so stupid and not telling Gabrielle how I feel about her."

"Why have you not told her Xena?"

"Well...i had a vision of our deaths on a snowy mountain where we are to be crucified and I have tried to push her away to keep that from happening."

"Who told you of this vision?"

"A witch named Alti."

"She is full of it Xena... don’t listen to her!"

"I won’t have to because I killed her but so far the visions she has shown me have come true...she cursed my child to never know the love of his parents which he never did." Xena explained with tears in her eyes.

"That is terrible, where is my nephew now? I would like to see him?"

"He is dead Blaise."

"By the gods Xena...i am sorry." Blaise answered as she held Xena’s hand for comfort.

"Yeah, well...i will see him one day again when I die." Xena answered trying to be stoic.

"About this vision Xena...i won’t allow it to come true...do you understand what I mean?"

"No...not really Blaise."

"I will not allow that to happen and I have the power to stop it."

"How?"

"Xena...i would kill Ares himself to become a God to protect you and Gabrielle from your deaths." Blaise answered with coldness at the act of killing her father.

"Blaise...you shouldn’t talk that way."

"Xena...you both are my family and I refuse to lose you to a senseless death especially if I can prevent it. You both have too much good to do in this world for you both to die."

"That is odd coming from the future God of War because I might have to battle you for good."

"No not really...i’m more objective than my father and he uses war because he has nothing else to do or for his pettiness... I will not do battle with you Xena ever."

"I appreciate your offer of protection Blaise it means a lot to me."

"If you ever want to see your son in the Elysian Fields let me know and I will have it arranged." Blaise offered with a smile.

"You could do that?"

"I have pull with the gods Xena and yes I could do it for you... just let me know."

"Oh...i could see my son Solan." Xena answered with happiness at the thought..."I will take you up on that offer some day Blaise."

"The offer always stands Xena."

Blaise and Xena continued their drinking and conversation for a couple of more hours then decided it was time to head back to the village. They both arrived back to the village late in the evening having drunk one too many ports. They both stopped the horses in front of their hut and Xena dismounted Argo. Xena staggered towards the hut.

"I will put the horses in the stables." Blaise replied.

"Aah...Argo can take her own saddle off and stable herself Blaise." Xena replied with slurred speach.

"Aah...Xena...Argo can do many things but I doubt she can do that!"

"Whatever!" Xena answered as she staggered into the hut plopping down on the bed face down.

Blaise took the horses to the stables and settled them for the evening.

"Now...you two behave yourselves tonight!" Blaise replied as she pointed at the horses finding it difficult to not stagger.

Both horses whinnied in obeince to her orders.

Blaise turned to leave the stables and found Ephiny standing behind her.

"I have been waiting all evening...i have missed you." Ephiny replied seductively as she moved closer to Blaise.

"Oh, how I have missed you Ephiny."

Ephiny reached up and began to kiss Blaise.

Blaise pulled away with a wince of pain from the punch she received earlier from Xena.

"I’m sorry what happened Blaise?"

"I met a certain warrior princess’ fist. It is a long story that I will tell you another time."

"I will have to be more gentle then." Ephiny replied as she put her hands on Blaise’s face and began to gently kiss her lips.

Blaise put her arms around Ephiny pulling her in closer to her and settled her hands on Ephiny’s butt. As the two continued their kiss Ephiny slid her hands down Blaise’s chest slipping her hands under Blaise’s v-shaped shirt gliding her hands over her very muscular chest.

Ephiny reached down to her wet hot center. Ephiny ran her finger along her swollen nub and entered her finger inside of herself to wet her finger. She took her wet finger and wiped her juices on Blaise’s lips then put her finger inside of Blaise’s mouth.

Ephiny took her finger out of Blaise’s mouth and entered her mouth with her tongue kissing her more forcefully. Ephiny could taste herself with the taste of port in Blaise’s mouth. Blaise slid her hands down Ephiny’s hips to her legs and slid them up and under her skirt to find Ephiny was wearing nothing underneath.

"How very sexy Ephiny." Blaise whispered as she staggered knocking Ephiny off balance but steadied the two of them with Ephiny’s help.

Ephiny kissed down Blaise’s neck then down her chest to her nipple and cirlced her tongue around it and then began to suck on it.

Blaise backed away and put her hands up on Ephiny’s shoulders.

"Ephiny...i can’t do this." Blaise exclaimed.

"How embarrassing...Ephiny replied with a look of shock on her face...do you not want me?"

"On the contrary Ephiny...Blaise pulled Ephiny closer to her and brushed her hair off of her face...i want you more than you could ever know but not like this...she replied as she stroked Ephiny’s hair...i want our first time to be special Ephiny and I don’t want to be drunk...would you mind waiting?"

Ephiny smiled with relief that Blaise did indeed want her..."that is very sweet Blaise and I will wait for you if that is what you want...Ephiny kissed Blaise...come one I will help you back to your hut." Ephiny put her arm around Blaise’s waist to help steady her as they left the stables.

Xena felt tender kisses on her forehead and neck but was too drunk to open her eyes to see who the culprit was but she knew who the kissing bandit really was.

"Blaise that better not be you!" Xena replied.

"It is me my love." Gabrielle whispered.

"I know your kisses anywhere honey I was just teasing you." Xena answered with a smile still unable to open her eyes..."kiss me Gabrielle." Xena demanded.

Gabrielle entered Xena’s mouth with her tongue for a deep passionate kiss.

"Goodnight Ephiny and thanks for understanding." Blaise leaned down and kissed Ephiny.

"Goodnight Blaise." Ephiny smiled and walked off towards her hut.

Blaise entered her hut to find a certain bard kissing her sister.

"Hey...you!...Blaise yelled pointing her finger at Gabrielle..."step away from the Warrior Princess." Blaise laughed.

"Busted!" Gabrielle exclaimed.

"I’m an innocent bystander." Xena replied.

"I’m sure you are Xena...Gabrielle you’re outta here!"...Blaise exclaimed as she pointed her finger over her shoulder towards the door.

"Oh, come on Blaise." Gabrielle smiled as she pleaded her case.

Blaise moved towards Gabrielle who was trying to avoid Blaise and slip by her.

"I can’t believe you are trying to corrupt my sister!" Blaise laughed.

"Now Blaise...wait a minute"...Gabrielle replied laughing as she ran out away from the bed which kept the distance between her and Blaise.

Blaise grabbed Gabrielle and threw her over her shoulder to carry her out of the hut.

"I tried to warn my sister about women like you but she just wouldn’t listen to me!" Blaise answered with a laugh. "I should give you a thorough spanking...nah, you would like it too much!"

"Goodnight Xena...Gabrielle replied and blew a kiss to her lover as Blaise carried her out of the hut.

Blaise took Gabrielle back to the hut and put her down in front of her royal guards who where amazed that their queen had slipped out of their site.

"Gabrielle...you may want to replace your guards...they didn’t do a very good job of protecting you this evening." Blaise gave the guards a disgusted look.

"I will forgive them this time Blaise because I went out the back of the hut."

"Now...you be a good little amazon queen and stop trying to tempt the warrior princess!" Blaise instructed Gabrielle as she laughed.

"If I must!" Gabrielle answered with a laugh.

"Gabrielle...Blaise gave a look of seriousness...i explained everything that happened between us to Xena."

"So, that is where you got the fat lip, huh?" Gabrielle asked with a smile.

"Yeah, I’m outta here." Blaise moved towards Gabrielle like she was going to spank her...ok look I am trying to be serious here Gabrielle stop your fooling around...Blaise laughed...i explained everything to her and she explained that she was more to blame than anyone else because she denied her true feelings for you."

"Whew...i was worried there wouldn’t be a joining...but I am glad she was understanding." Gabrielle answered with relief.

"Gabrielle...i care for you and remember I would do anything for you...i hope you and my sister will have a very happy life together...remember don’t hesitate to ask my for anything o.k.?"

"Thank you Blaise I appreciate that and the same goes for you."

Gabrielle leaned up and kissed Blaise on the cheek as she hugged her.

Ephiny stepped out of the hut as they where in their embrace.

"Gaurds...where is..."Ephiny stopped in mid-sentence as she saw Gabrielle and Blaise.

"Gabrielle...i told you...you are to be joined and I’m dating someone else so, you have to contain your feelings for me." Blaise stated with a laugh.

Gabrielle slapped Blaise on the arm."You are so bad! Goodnight." Gabrielle answered with a smile and entered the hut.

"Ephiny...there was nothing going on here." Blaise replied with a smile.

"I hope not...Ephiny replied as she moved towards Blaise..."because I can become quite a jealous woman." Ephiny whispered as she kissed her neck followed by a soft bite. Ephiny gave Blaise a sexy smile and entered her hut.

"Oh, baby...Blaise exclaimed with a smile as she looked at the guards..."hey, make sure they stay here tonight so, I have a chance to cool down would ya?" Blaise replied with a smile.

"As you wish." the guards replied.

"These women are driving me nuts." Blaise exclaimed as she headed back to her hut for some sleep.

Blaise woke up before sunrise angry because nature called and she wanted to get in some extra sleep. When she finished her business she had a great idea and quietly slipped into Ephiny’s hut.

She covered Ephiny’s mouth with her hand, which startled Ephiny out of her sleep.

"Blaise what are you doing here?"

Blaise put her finger to her mouth..."ssssh...i want to show you something...come on." Blaise whispered.

Ephiny got out of bed and Blaise grabbed her blanket, as Ephiny put her boots on still not fully awake.

"This better be good Blaise for you to wake me up so early." Ephiny whispered.

They both tiptoed out of the hut and Blaise wrapped the blanket around Ephiny to keep her warm from the chilly morning air.

"You guards keep the other one in there." Blaise instructed.

"We will." they answered.

"Blaise what are we doing?" Ephiny asked.

"Just trust me Eph." Blaise answered as she wrapped her arm around Ephiny and led her out of the village to a clearing. Blaise sat down against a tree and pulled Ephiny down on her lap. Ephiny moved her body against Blaise’s and Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny.

"This is really nice Blaise...darkness." Ephiny replied with sarcasm.

"Just wait a couple of minutes Eph."

Ephiny thought about how much she loved being in Blaise’s arms and how Blaise called her Eph, which she found to be incredibly sexy the way she pronounced it.

The sun began to rise lighting the area with a yellowish-orange hue.

"It’s beautiful Blaise." Ephiny exclaimed with a smile as she watched the sun rise above the horizon.

"Goodmorning Eph." Blaise whispered in her ear as she placed a kiss on her cheek.

Ephiny turned to face Blaise and glazed into her eyes..."you are so romantic Blaise and I love being here with you." Ephiny replied with a smile.

Ephiny closed her eyes as she leaned in and kissed Blaise. Ephiny layed her head on Blaise’s chest after their kiss and savored the moment of being in Blaise’s arms with a beautiful sunrise on the horizon.

"Blaise you are almost too good to be true."

Blaise brushed Ephiny’s hair off of her face and looked into her eyes..."how do you mean Eph?"

"I have always dreamed and prayed to the god’s for someone like you...i just want it to be real and not end."

"I promise you it’s real and this will not end." Blaise leaned in and kissed Ephiny placing her hand on her neck to pull her in for a deeper kiss. Blaise broke the kiss and looked into Ephiny’s eyes. Blaise smiled and placed a soft kiss on her forehead.

"I would love nothing more than to sit here with you all day but I have things to take care of as I know that you do too.

Ephiny sighed..."you’re right..we must attend to our duties." Ephiny answered with disappointment.

Blaise helped Ephiny up..."do you want a piggyback ride?" Blaise asked with a devilish grin.

"Sure." Ephiny answered with a smile as she jumped on Blaise’s back.

Blaise walked back towards the village as Ephiny placed kisses along Blaise’s ears and neck.

"Ephiny...you are driving me crazy with your kisses." Blaise replied as she pretended to drop Ephiny.

They both shared a laugh at the fun they where having as they entered the village.

"Blaise!" Solari shouted with agitation.

Blaise was taken back by her forwardness and she put Ephiny down..."Yes...Solari?" Blaise answered.

"I have taken care of your request for the party this evening and I need you for the final details."

"O.k....thank you...Ephiny I wil see you later." Blaise smiled and kissed her goodbye as Solari rolled her eyes and sighed in disgust.

"Goodbye Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile as she walked off to tend to her duties for the day.

"Shall we take care of those details Solari?" Blaise asked.

"Yes...Blaise...Solari intertwined her arm into Blaise’s who was confused by Solari’s actions. Solari smiled at Blaise and led her away.

Blaise and Solari finished up the final details for the party and Blaise went off in search of Xena.

"Oh...Eponon...have you seen Xena?"

"She is at the training area."

"Thank you Eponon."

Blaise headed over to the training area to find her sister. She approached to find Xena in fight with two other amazons.

"Hey...Xena!...Blaise shouted...why are you doing this so early?"

Xena stopped her training session with the amazons.

"I like to get my juices flowing in the morning Blaise." Xena answered as she wiped the sweat off of her.

"Stop this nonsense at once!....let’s go fishing!" Blaise exclaimed with a laugh.

"You are on little sister!" Xena answered with a smile.

Blaise and Xena had been fishing for over an hour. Blaise had a pile of fish next to her that she had caught compared to just one that Xena had reeled in.

Blaise laughed as she looked at Xena’s pile..."hey, Xena...you sure are catching a lot of fish there buddy!"

Xena curled her lip up in disgust..."very funny Blaise." Xena shot a strained smile to her sister..."you know I used to drag Lyceus down to the lake to fish all the time."

"Really?"

"Yeah... you are both a lot alike."

Blaise smiled and there was an awkward silences between the two neither knowing what should be said.

"Oh, here are the vows I wrote for you...You need to memorize them...well, If you like them that is." Blaise replied as she handed Xena the scroll.

Xena read them over..."Blaise these are beautiful...it’s everything I have always wanted to say to Gabrielle but didn’t know how to put into words...i love the vows!" Xena answered with excitement and she hugged Blaise..."thank you."

"You’re welcome Xena. Hey, you have a bite!" Blaise exclaimed as she saw Xena’s pole bend from the weight of a fish at the other end.

"Oh, yes I do!...come to mama!" Xena answered as she grabbed her pole to reel in the fish.

Xena and Blaise gathered all of their equipment and the fish to carry back to the village.

"I think it’s safe to say that I’m the fishing champion Xena." Blaise replied with a laugh.

"You just love to rub it in don’t you?" Xena answered with a smile.

"Every chance I get because I owe you payback for the fat lip you gave me!...hey we need to get back and get cleaned up for the party."

"Party?"

"Sure...the one to celebrate your last night as a single woman."

"Oh, now this should be interesting." Xena answered with sarcasm.

"You are going to love it...i promise...now...pick up the pace old lady we need to get moving." Blaise answered teasingly.

"Keep it up and I will give you another fat lip!" Xena replied with a laugh.

Xena dropped off the fish they caught at the food hut and headed off to get cleaned up for the evenings festivities.

After cleaning up they both headed over to the training facility where the festivities where to take place. The party had already started as Xena and Blaise arrived.

"The guest of honor has arrived...Blaise announced...she needs a drink for her lonely hand!" Blaise joked.

They both grabbed a couple of mugs of port.

"A toast!" Blaise announced as everyone held their mugs up high in honor of Xena..."may your life be filled with love, happiness and plenty of sex!" Blaise laughed.

"Here...here!" the group exclaimed.

"Let’s hope so!" Xena answered with a smile as they all drank their port for the toast.

"O.k. ladies bring on the port and gather around the table...we are going to play dinars!" Blaise announced to the group.

Solari brought over pitchers filled with port as Blaise ordered.

"Blaise what is dinars?" Xena asked.

"It’s a drinking game Xena...now, what you have to do is bounce the dinar on the table and it has to make it in the mug. If it doesn’t make it in you have to drink to the bottom of your mug. If the dinar makes it in you can assign someone to drink...everybody got it?" Blaise asked and looked around to get confirmation of her instructions.

"Piece of cake." Xena answered.

"Seeing as how you are the guest of honor you can go first...oh, don’t try to keep my dinar either." Blaise exclaimed with a sly grin on her face.

Xena shot a smile back at her sister...Xena bounced the dinar on the table which completely missed the mug.

"Seems like the Warrior Princess doesn’t have as many skills as she thought." Blaise replied with a laugh, which everyone else joined in on..."here, let me help you raise your mug to finish it off." Blaise teased Xena.

"Xena...Xena!" everyone chanted to coax Xena to finish out the mug of port which the warrior princess obliged the group.

After an hour of Xena failing miserably at her attempts to get the dinar in the mug and of everyone else assigning her their drinks she exclaimed..."I’m very drunk!"

"Join the club Xena." Blaise answered laughing.

Gabrielle, Ephiny and the other amazons enjoyed a quite dinner and began to open presents given to Gabrielle for her impending joining.

"Is the theme of the gifts sex?" Gabrielle asked with embarrassment as she held up some sexy lingerie that she received as a gift.

."Seems like we won’t see the two of you for awhile after the joining considering all of the lingerie you received!" Ephiny answered with a laugh.

Gabrielle leaned to Ephiny and whispered..."I wonder what our girls are doing about now?"

"Probably trying to out do each other in some silly sporting event." Ephiny answered with a laugh.

"You are probably right Ephiny." Gabrielle laughed at the thought of Blaise and Xena trying to top one another.

"Xena! You are to sit next to me!" Blaise replied as Xena sat next to Blaise...please!...Xena needs a drink!" Blaise shouted as she snapped her fingers.

An amazon brought over a couple of mugs of port for the two.

"Bring out the next attraction!" Blaise exclaimed.

A beautiful woman stepped out and began to dance seductively in front of Xena.

"Blaise you are a dog!" Xena replied with a smile.

"Are you enjoying yourself?"

"No, not one bit if Gabrielle asks!" Xena slurred with a laugh.

"Your secret is safe with me." Blaise answered.

The woman started to remove her clothing as she continued her dance. The other women cheered as she removed her clothing.

"Oh, Blaise...i’m not to sure about this...Gabrielle would be pissed!"

"Who cares? As long as you don’t sleep with the chick what is the problem?"

"I guess you are right." Xena slurred.

The half naked woman removed more clothing and began to grind her body up and down Xena’s body. Everyone cheered for more clothing to come off.

Xena had an embarrassed smile on her face.

"What’s wrong Xena?...not used to a woman not being a challenge?" Blaise asked sarcastically.

"It’s a lot more fun when they play hard to get Blaise." Xena answered with a smile.

The woman had removed all of her clothing and climbed up on Xena and began to kiss her.

"Alright sweatheart...Blaise replied as she pulled the woman away from Xena’s lips...she is spoken for find someone else."

"Oh, but she is so hot and I would love to show her what she is going to be missing when she gets joined." The woman replied seductively.

Xena drank the other two mugs of port..."maybe I should find out what I will be missing Blaise." Xena slurred as she reached to pull the woman closer to her.

Blaise grabbed the woman off of Xena who fell out of the chair drunk.

"O.k. who wants to satisfy this woman’s needs?" Blaise asked as she held the naked woman.

"How about you Blaise?" The woman purred as she kissed Blaise.

"Easy big girl...Blaise replied as she pulled away from the kiss...i’m taken."

Blaise put the woman down who entered a crowd of dancing amazons and began to dance with them.

"Whoa...what did I just say? Blaise thought to herself...i’m taken?...what was I thinking allowing a naked woman out of my arms...i must be drunk if I did that!" Blaise thought and laughed to herself.

Blaise checked on Xena who layed on the ground passed out from too much port.

"Looks like I got you again sister...you should learn to not drink with me." Blaise replied with a laugh as she picked Xena up to a sitting position..."well, ladies...it seems the warrior princess won’t be showing off her archery skills for us this evening!" Blaise laughed with the others as she put Xena over her shoulder to carry her back to the hut. "Now, you ladies be gentle with the naked woman!" Blaise exclaimed.

"Do you need some help Blaise?" Solari asked hoping Blaise would need her help.

"I think I can get her back...but thanks." Blaise answered as she staggered a bit with Xena over her shoulder from too many drinks.

"I will walk with you just in case Blaise." Solari answered.

"If that will make you happy then come on woman!" Blaise asnwered with a laugh as they both made their way to her hut.

Solari helped Blaise lay Xena down on the bed. Blaise covered Xena with a blanket and turned away bumping into Solari not knowing she was there.

"Sorry... I didn’t mean to bump into you Solari."

"I didn’t mind at all Blaise." Solari answered and kissed Blaise.

Blaise pulled back from the kiss surprised at what Solari had just done.

Solari grabbed Blaise behind the neck and kissed her again.

Blaise put her hands on her shoulders and pushed her away from her..."this is not going to happen Solari...do you understand?" Blaise replied with a serious tone in her voice.

"I’m sorry Blaise." Solari answered as she left the hut.

Blaise took off Xena’s boots and layed next to her sister on the bed.

"Blaise it was a great party...thanks." Xena replied as she slurred her words.

"You’re welcome...now get your beauty sleep you need it." Blaise laughed.

Blaise could hear her name being called but it sounded so far off in the distance and she couldn’t tell who was calling her name. The voice came closer and more audible.

"Blaise!...wake up!" Ephiny shouted.

Blaise openend her eyes to find Ephiny standing over her..."hey, baby!" Blaise smiled.

"Whoa! You two stink like a couple of drunks!"

"That is because we are!" Blaise answered with a smile.

"And you are late! Get up the joining is in an hour!"

"By the gods!" Blaise shouted. "Xena wake up!" Blaise shook Xena. "Come on get up!" Blaise replied as she climbed out of bed.

"Yeah...yeah I am up." Xena replied as she fell back to sleep.

Blaise put Xena over her shoulder to carry her down to the lake.

"Xena is going to be angry with me." Blaise thought to herself..."but I what can I do?" Blaise smiled at her evil plan.

Blaise threw Xena in the cold lake.

"By the gods Blaise! Xena shouted. "What are you trying to do send me to tartarus?"

Blaise stood on shore laughing at the look of shock on Xena’s face.

"Sorry...but payback is a bitch...we are late for the joining and a certain sleepyhead refused to wake up so, I had no choice." Blaise continued her laugh.

"How late are we?" Xena asked as she walked out of the lake...you do realize I will get you back little sister," she replied as she pointed at Blaise.

"We have 45 minutes until the joining and we are even now!." Blaise smiled.

"What happened last night? Did a cyclops step on my head because it sure feels that way?" Xena asked.

They both headed off back to the village.

"You tried to out drink me again Xena...you need to learn you won’t be able to do that."Blaise laughed..."i don’t remember too much except carrying your heavy butt back to the hut!" They both laughed.

Xena grabbed Blaise on the arm.

"I didn’t do anything to hurt Gabrielle or that I would regret did I...you know with the naked woman?" Xena asked nervously.

"Naw...you where a perfect little warrior princess." Blaise answered.

Blaise and Xena got back to the hut and got cleaned up for the joining.

"How do I look Blaise?"

"You look great Xena. I think Gabrielle will enjoy what she sees.

"Do you have the ring?" Xena asked nervously.

"Chill big sister...i have it right here in my pocket!"

"Well, it is time to join with the love of my life." Xena replied with a smile.

"Yes it is Xena." Blaise answered with a smile as she put her arm around Xena’s neck and the pair left the hut.

The ceremonial area of the village was beautifully decorated for the joining. Blaise and Xena took their places at the front of the altar to await the arrival of Gabrielle.

"Xena...are you nervous?" Blaise asked.

"Of course, wouldn’t you be? I just want to be everything Gabrielle deserves."

Blaise put her hand on Xena’s shoulder for comfort..."you will be Xena...don’t worry. Do you remember your vows?"

"I memorized them."

Ephiny walked out of the hut and made her way to the front of the altar to perform the ceremony. Blaise’s breath was taken away by Ephiny’s beauty as she made her way to the front of the altar.

"Blaise...are you okay?" Xena asked looking over her shoulder at her sister.

"I am not sure...am I breathing?" Blaise asked with a smile.

Xena smiled..."if you weren’t breathing you would have passed out...now, stop it you are making me more nervous!"

"Yes my warrior princess...as you wish." Blaise replied sarcastically and winked at Ephiny who had passed in front of the pair to take her place at the altar. Blaise winked at Ephiny and whispered..."you look beautiful."

Ephiny smiled and shyly looked down the aisle.

Gabrielle appeared at the door of the hut leading to the aisle dressed in ceremonial joining attire.

"Xena...she is beautiful."

"No, she is exquisite Blaise." Xena answered with a smile.

The amazons all bowed as their queen walked past them to take her place next to her warrior princess.

Xena kept a smile on her face as she watched her bard approach her. Gabrielle stopped next to Xena and took Xena’s hand in her own.

Xena mouthed. "I love you."

Gabrielle smiled at Xena with tears in her eyes.

Gabrielle and Xena stood looking into one another’s eyes lost in the moment as Ephiny proceeded with the formalities of the joining ceremony.

Ephiny touched Gabrielle on the shoulder to get her attention..."your vows Gabrielle." Ephiny replied.

Gabrielle slipped the ring she had for Xena on her finger as she recited her vows through tears of happiness.

Xena...my best friend...my life

The answer to my dreams

I lost my heart when I met you...my love

I promise to be by your side

To support you, to comfort you

To love you for the remainder of our lives in this world and throughout all of eternity.

Xena smiled and was unable to control the tears of joy that ran down her face.

"Xena...now your vows." Ephiny replied.

Xena turned to Blaise for the ring and put the ring on Gabrielle’s finger.

Xena smiled at the love of her life and began to recite her vows to Gabrielle.

From this moment life has begun

From this moment you are the one

Right beside you is where I belong...from this moment on

From this moment I have been blessed

I live only for your happiness

and for your love I would give my last breath

From this moment on

I give my hand to you with all my heart

Can’t wait to live my life with you...can’t wait to start

You and I will never be apart

my dreams came true because of you

From this moment on as long as I live I will love you, I promise you this.

There is nothing I wouldn’t give from this moment on

You’re the reason I believe in love and you’re the answers to my prayers from up above

All we need is just the two of us

I will love you as long as I live and into eternity...from this moment on

Gabrielle was very touched by Xena’s heartfelt vows and began to cry. Xena smiled at Gabrielle and tightened her grip on Gabrielle’s hand to comfort her.

"I know pronounce you partners in love and life for all of eternity." Ephiny proclaimed with a smile and tears of happiness for her friends...."Xena and Gabrielle you may seal your partnership with a kiss."

"I thought you would never get to that part Ephiny." Xena answered as everyone laughed.

Xena smiled and took both of Gabrielle’s hands into her own. She leaned down and kissed the love of her life, which seemed like an eternity to the both of them.

They broke their kiss and looked into one another’s eyes savoring the moment. They kissed each other again and walked down the aisle as partners for all of eternity.

Everyone clapped and bowed as their queen and her warrior partner passed them down the aisle.

Blaise put her arm out for Ephiny to walk her down the ailse after Xena and Gabrielle.

"You look incredible Ephiny." Blaise replied with a smile.

"You look just as good Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile of her own.

Gabrielle, Xena, Blaise and Ephiny sat at the head table for the traditional joining dinner. After everyone finished their dinner Ephiny summoned the newly joined partners to the center of the hut for the traditional first joining dance.

"Aah Gabrielle I’m not a very good dancer." Xena replied nervously.

"Just follow me my love." Gabrielle answered with a smile as she took Xena in her arms for their first dance as partners for life as the band began to play a slow song.

Xena looked down at her bard and thought about how beautiful she is and how much she loved her. She leaned down and kissed Gabrielle as they continued their dance.

Midway through the dance Blaise and Ephiny joined them on the dance floor as did other amazons.

"Ephiny...do you remember that promise you made me?" Blaise asked with a sly grin.

"How could I forget something I am so looking forward too?" Ephiny answered, as she kissed Blaise and wrapped her arms around her neck as they continued their slow dance.

Blaise broke off the kiss and smiled at Ephiny..."if you don’t mind I would like to dance with the bride."

"I will only be jealous for a moment." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Oooh, a jealous woman turns me on to no end!" Blaise replied with a smile receiving a slap on the butt from Ephiny.

Blaise made her way over to Xena and Gabrielle..."Excuse me...Xena I heard Argo calling you...Blaise replied with a laugh as she stepped in between her and Gabrielle...can I have this dance?" Blaise asked Gabrielle with a smile.

Xena tapped Blaise on the shoulder..."keep your hands where I can see them." Xena warned Blaise with a laugh as she returned to their table.

"Blaise I think you should become a comedian instead of the future God of War." Gabrielle replied with a laugh.

"You look very beautiful Gabrielle...are you happy?

"Unbelievably so Blaise." Gabrielle answered with a huge smile..."thank you for helping Xena with the vows they where very beautiful."

"How did you know?"

"I know Xena too well Blaise...she is not good at expressing her feelings like that."

"Well, Gabrielle that is what Xena expressed to me about her feelings for you."

"Thank you for helping her with them."

"Anytime you need my help let me know."

"Aah...maybe you can help me out with our wedding night Blaise... I am nervous about pleasing Xena tonight."

"Oh, Gabrielle you will be fine don’t worry about it so much... just let it happen."

"No, I ...aah...if you and I would have finished what we started you would have been my first so, now Xena is my first."

"Oh, okay I am sorry... well, this is what you do." Blaise whispered her instructions in Gabrielle’s ear.

"Blaise!" Gabrielle exclaimed..."you are bad!" Gabrielle laughed.

"Trust me I guarantee she will love it!" Blaise answered with a confidant smile.

"Okay, thanks Blaise. Look, I am taking too much of your time with Ephiny."

"She looks impatient." Gabrielle replied.

"I know she can’t keep her hands off of me!" Blaise joked.

"I hope you two can become closer...she is a fine woman Blaise."

"I hope to get real close to her this evening Gabrielle...Blaise answered with a grin..."hey, you and Xena wouldn’t be too upset if we slid out of the reception a little early would you?"

"No, go on and enjoy yourself."

"Can I cut in?" Solari asked

"Sure the queen is all yours to dance with." Blaise offered.

"No, I’m sorry. I meant you Blaise." Solari answered with embarrassment over the confusion and for turning down her queen.

"Aah...o.k. I guess." Blaise answered confused..."do you mind Gabrielle?" Blaise asked.

"No, my warrior princess is getting restless anyway." Gabrielle smiled as she rubbed Blaise’s arm for assurance that she was not mad.

"I hope you and Xena have an incredibly happy life together." Blaise replied as she kissed and hugged Gabrielle.

"Thank you." Gabrielle answered with a smile as she went back to the table to be with Xena.

Blaise and Solari began to dance and Gabrielle sat next to Xena to watch the pair a little confused by Solari’s request to dance with Blaise.

"Hello...my love." Xena replied as she kissed Gabrielle.

"What is up with Solari?" Gabrielle asked

"Who cares? "I only have eyes for you baby." Xena answered as she kissed Gabrielle..."Gabrielle your kiss is like perpetual bliss...i can’t believe I waited so long to tell you how I felt about you." Xena replied as she brushed Gabrielle’s hair off of her face.

"Your sister has had quite a romantic impact on you hasn’t she?" Gabrielle asked with a smile.

"No, it’s just that I realized how much I love you." Xena answered as she leaned in for a long kiss.

Ephiny approached Blaise and Solari on the dance floor obviously jealous of Solari dancing with Blaise.

Ephiny put her arm around Blaise’s waist and looked up at Blaise..."i do believe we have a date in my hut?" Ephiny replied with a seductive smile.

Blaise put her arm around Ephiny..."yes, we do don’t we?" She answered with a smile..."excuse us Solari...thanks for the dance." Blaise replied as her and Ephiny took a step away from Solari.

"Aah...sorry to intrude." Solari answered nervously.

Ephiny looked at Solari with anger as Blaise started to lead them off the dance floor. Ephiny looked back at Solari with a smile that Blaise was leaving with her and not Solari.

Blaise and Ephiny entered Ephiny’s hut and Blaise began to untie Ephiny’s shirt. Ephiny looked into Blaise’s blue eyes and began to kiss her. She took Blaise’s hand and moved it onto her breast as she continued the kiss. Blaise caressed Ephiny’s breast through her clothing and then moved her hand under the material to touch Ephiny’s supple breast. Blaise gently caressed her breast as they continued to explore one another’s mouths with their tongues.

Blaise kissed down Ephiny’s neck to her breast. She moved the material away to expose Ephiny’s hard nipple and gently put her mouth on it. Blaise cirlced her tongue around Ephiny’s nipple as Ephiny moaned with delight at what Blaise was doing.

Blaise slid her other hand onto the unattended breast and Ephiny tilted her head back in response to Blaise. Ephiny slid her hands through Blaise’s hair and pulled her head closer to her breast as her excitement grew. Blaise made her way to the other breast and began to suck the erect nipple.

"By the god’s Blaise that feels so good." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise kissed back up Ephiny’s neck stopping at her lips and slid her hands under the clothing to brush it off of Ephiny’s shoulders. The clothing landed on the floor at their feet, as Blaise continued to kiss Ephiny passionately. Ephiny broke the kiss and took off Blaise’s shirt revealing her muscular chest. Ephiny placed soft kisses and bites along Blaise’s neck working her way down her chest stopping at her breasts which she began to kiss.

Ephiny moved her kisses down Blaise’s abdomen stopping at Blaise’s sex. Ephiny knelt in front of Blaise placing her hands on Blaise’s hips and began to kiss her through her pants feeling Blaise’s wetness through the material.

"Oh, Ephiny." Blaise moaned in pleasure.

Ephiny worked her kisses back up to Blaise’s lips and broke their kiss. She stepped back and untied her skirt dropping it to the floor. She slid her undergarments off standing before Blaise naked.

Blaise pulled Ephiny in her arms and began to kiss her sliding her hands onto Ephiny’s butt.

Ephiny untied Blaise’s pants and slid them off of her hips letting them fall to the floor. Blaise lifted Ephiny up in her arms and stepped out of her pants.

Blaise laid Ephiny down gently on the bed never breaking their kiss.

Gabrielle and Xena went through the motions of opening wedding gifts realizing they would rather be doing other things.

"Xena I want to start our first night together as life partners."

"Then let’s get out of here!" Xena smiled as she kissed Gabrielle glad that she wasn’t the only one who didn’t want to be opening presents.

"It’s time for my love and I to say goodnight to start our life together as partners...i hope everyone continues to enjoy themselves because we are off to do the same." Gabrielle announced as she grabbed Xena’s hand and quickly exited the hut.

"I thought we would never get out of there!" Xena exclaimed.

Blaise was on all fours above Ephiny as she continued to kiss her. Blaise moved her kisses down Ephiny’s neck to her breast where she circled the nipple with her tongue. Blaise ran her tongue down Ephiny’s abdomen stopping to suck her soft skin and continued her descent with her tongue stopping between Ephiny’s legs. She ran her tongue down the inside of Ephiny’s leg and then back up crossing to the other leg stopping at Ephiny’s hot, wet center. Blaise lightly ran her tongue between Ephiny’s folds and made her way down the inside of Ephiny’s other leg.

"Oh, Blaise...please." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise ran her tongue back up the inside of her leg stopping at Ephiny’s center to place a soft kiss on her blond curls. Moving up Blaise began to place soft kisses Ephiny’s abdomen as she continued to hover above Ephiny. Ephiny put her hands on Blaise’s hips to pull her down on top of her which Blaise resisted.

Blaise continued her kisses on Ephiny’s breasts and moved her kisses up Ephiny’s neck as she lowered her body onto Ephiny’s.

"Blaise...please...touch me...i can’t stand it anymore." Ephiny pleaded.

Blaise continued her kisses along Ephiny’s neck and whispered in her ear..."i don’t think you are ready yet Eph."

"No, you’re wrong. I am so ready Blaise." Ephiny pleaded.

Gabrielle and Xena made their way to their hut arm in arm. Xena stopped at the door of their hut and kissed Gabrielle. She bent down and picked Gabrielle up in her arms and carried her across the threshold into the hut. Their hut had been decorated with beautiful flowers and stocked with plenty of food and wine for their first night together.

"Xena this is the best day of my life...make love to me." Gabrielle smiled and kissed Xena.

Blaise ran her tongue back down Ephiny’s body stopping at her sex. Blaise licked and sucked her inner thighs teasing Ephiny.

"Blaise please! I can’t take anymore, touch me!"

Blaise moved Ephiny’s folds away revealing her swollen nub. Blaise placed her tongue on her nub licking and sucking it. Ephiny snapped her head back in pleasure at Blaise finally touching her.

Blaise continued to work her tongue over Ephiny’s hard clit as Ephiny moved her hips in sync with Blaise’s movements.

Blaise continued her assault on Ephiny’s sex and entered her finger inside of her wet opening.

"Ephiny...you feel so good inside...very warm, wet and I love how you tightly wrap around me finger." Blaise whispered.

Blaise moved her finger in and out of Ephiny’s opening and entered another finger inside of her.

Ephiny moved her hips faster to Blaises movements with her fingers and with her tongue.

"Oh, Blaise...Oh, oh,...by the god’s it feels so good!" Ephiny moaned.

Blaise moved her tongue over her clit faster as she moved her fingers in and out with the same vigor.

Ephiny thrust her hips up and held them there as she screamed in ecstasy as she released her orgasm.

Blaise entered Ephiny’s opening with her tongue to except Ephiny’s offerings from her orgasm. As Blaise continued...Ephiny’s body quivered from the orgasm and she took in deap breaths spent from her experience.

Blaise finished and climbed on top of Ephiny who wrapped her arms around Blaise.

Blaise kissed Ephiny’s neck..."are you o.k.?" Blaise asked softly.

"I have never felt so wonderful in my whole life Blaise...that was incredible!"...Ephiny looked into Blaise’s eyes and kissed her.

"Now...it’s my turn." Ephiny replied with a smile.

Xena put Gabrielle down without breaking her gaze into her beautiful green eyes and slid her fingers under the straps of Gabrielle’s gown. Xena pushed the straps off of her shoulders and placed soft kisses on each shoulder as she continued to push the gown down Gabrielle’s body making it’s way to the ground.

Xena moved her kisses up Gabrielle’s neck and parted Gabrielle’s lips with her tongue entering her mouth.

Gabrielle began to undress Xena as she continued her kiss.

Gabrielle backed up pulling Xena with her to the bed and laid back as she looked into her lover’s blue eyes.

Xena climbed on Gabrielle’s naked body and brushed her hair off of her face placing another kiss on her lips. Gabrielle slid her hands up on Xena’s back and worked them down to her butt where she circled her hands over the area.

Xena’s kisses moved to her neck and down to her nipple where she began to gently suck them.

"Oh, Xena!" Gabrielle moaned as Xena ran her hand down the curves of Gabrielle’s body stopping between her legs.

Xena ran her fingers through Gabrielle’s blond curls to her hot and wet sex. Xena rubbed her finger lightly over her mound.

"Spread your legs baby." Xena whispered in Gabrielle’s ear as she kissed her neck.

Gabrielle spread her legs for her lover and Xena spread her folds open running her finger down the swollen nub to her opening.

"Xena...it feels so good." Gabrielle moaned with pleasure.

Xena enter Gabrielle’s opening with her long slender finger and Gabrielle winced as she entered her.

"Are you okay?" Xena asked as she looked into Gabrielle’s eyes.

"It hurts a little Xena." Gabrielle answered.

"I will be more gentle my love...just try to relax." Xena whispered.

Xena took Gabrielle’s breast in her mouth kissing and sucking her nipple as she moved her finger in and out of her opening slowly.

Gabrielle arched her back in pleasure to Xena’s finger inside of her.

"Gabrielle...you are so wet...Xena whispered as she moved to her other breast...warm and tight inside...Xena circled her tongue around her nipple..."you feel so good."

"Oh, Xena...you feel so good inside of me." Gabrielle moaned.

Xena slid her finger in deeper with each movement of Gabrielle’s hips. Xena slid her thumb up on Gabrielle’s hard clit stroking it up and down as she moved her fingers in and out of Gabrielle.

"Xena you feel so wonderful." Gabrielle moaned.

Gabrielle picked up her pace of moving her hips in rhythm to Xena’s movements with her fingers.

Gabrielle’s body shook as she released her orgasm and moaned loudly in pleasure. Xena moved down between Gabrielle’s legs to enjoy her juices, which she devoured all of.

Xena made her way back up on Gabrielle kissing her body on the way up.

Xena lowered herself down on Gabrielle and snuggled her mouth on Gabrielle’s neck placing soft bites with kisses on it.

Gabrielle wrapped her arms around her warrior feeling the warmth of her body close to her.

"Xena that was incredible! I have never felt so good in my entire life." Gabrielle exclaimed with a smile.

"Gabrielle you where wonderful."

Gabrielle began kissing Xena and rolled on top of her.

"It’s my turn my love." Gabrielle replied looking her lover in the eye and smiled.

"I am looking forward to it." Xena answered as she leaned up to kiss Gabrielle.

Gabrielle held Xena’s breast in her hand caressing it as she lifted it to her mouth and began to suck her erect nipple. Gabrielle circled Xena’s nipple with her tongue as she gently squeezed her breast.

"That feels wonderful Gabrielle." Xena moaned.

Gabrielle slid her hand down between Xena’s legs and slid her fingers inside of Xena.

"Oh, yes Gabrielle." Xena moaned as she rubbed her hands up and down Gabrielle’s naked body.

Gabrielle moved her fingers in and out of Xena’s opening faster as Xena moved her hips to match Gabrielle’s movements.

Gabrielle slid her fingers out of Xena’s wet opening and straddled Xena’s sex with her own. Gabrielle spread Xena’s folds open exposing her hard, wet clit and did the same to herself. She lowered her clit onto Xena’s and slid hers up and down on Xena’s hard nub.

"Gabrielle...i had no idea...Xena moaned with amazement that Gabrielle would know such a sexual position...oh, by the god’s does that feel good." Xena moaned.

Gabrielle continued to rub her hard clit against Xena’s picking up her pace with her thrusts, which excited Xena more than any other previous lover she had.

"Oh, Gabrielle! Ican’t hold it any longer!" Xena shouted out of breath.

"Let it go Xena...along with me." Gabrielle answered softly.

They both released their orgasms together moaning in pleasure. Gabrielle slid down between Xena’s leg to collect her reward from Xena. Gabrielle’s tongue explored Xena’s opening until she had nothing left to offer.

"You taste so sweet Xena."

Gabrielle slid her body up on Xena’s and laid her head on her chest as Xena wrapped her arms around her bride.

"Gabrielle no one has ever made love to me that way before."

"You’re just saying that to make me feel better because I am so inexperienced." Gabrielle answered with a laugh.

"No Gabrielle I have never experienced anything as wonderful or satisfying as what you just did to me ever before."

Gabrielle picked up her head to look into Xena’s eyes where she saw the truth and love in her beautiful blue eyes.

Gabrielle smiled..."I love you Xena."

"I love you with all of my heart Gabrielle." Xena answered as she kissed her love.

Gabrielle layed back down and snuggled her face into Xena’s neck feeling safe in her warrior’s arms.

Xena kissed Gabrielle on her forehead..."goodnight my love."

Both Xena and Gabrielle spent from their lovemaking fell asleep in one another’s arms.

Xena woke to find Gabrielle in the same position from that evening. She slid her body out from underneath Gabrielle lying on her side to enjoy the site of her beautiful bride.

Xena brushed Gabrielle’s hair off of her face and smiled at how peaceful she looked as she slept. Xena thought about all of the wasted moments they had to be intimate together because they denied their feelings for one another for so long. Xena tenderly kissed Gabrielle and crawled out of bed. She covered her bride savoring her beauty for another moment.

Xena put on her robe and went in search of breakfast for her lover to have in bed when she woke up.

As Xena made her way to the food hut she noticed Ephiny and Blaise sitting at a table where they had finished eating breakfast.

Ephiny sat with her legs straddling Blaise’s lap with her arms wrapped around her and both where engrossed in a passionate kiss.

"Hey...get a room would you!" Xena replied with a laugh.

"Xena...what are you doing up so early?" Ephiny asked.

"I wanted to get some breakfast for Gabrielle to have in bed. I wanted to surprise her with it." Xena answered.

"Stay here Xena. I will get someone to take care of that for you." Ephiny replied.

Xena sat down beside Blaise as she waited for Ephiny’s return.

"Well? Was your joining night everything you expected it to be?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"And then some! I have never had anyone make love to me that way before...it was incredible." Xena exclaimed with a smile.

"Well, I am happy for you Xena."

"It seems you and Ephiny are getting along pretty good."

"Yes we are Xena." Blaise answered with a smile.

Ephiny returned to Blaise and Xena..."okay Xena everything is arranged for breakfast to be delivered to your hut...it should be there by the time you arrive...now get back to your woman so, I can be with mine!" Ephiny replied laughing.

"Yes I should get back because I don’t want Gabrielle to wake up before I return."

"As for you Blaise...we have a waterfall to enjoy." Ephiny replied seductively as she took Blaise by the hand and lead her off.

Blaise turned to Xena and mouthed..."the chicks dig me what can I say." with a cocky smile.

Xena shook her head and laughed as she walked back to her hut.

Xena entered the hut just as the breakfast Ephiny had arranged did..."here, I will take that...thank you." Xena whispered to not wake Gabrielle.

Xena placed the tray next to Gabrielle on the bed and lay next to her. Xena took the red rose from the tray and ran it softly along Gabrielle’s beautiful face to wake her from her sleep. Xena kissed Gabrielle softly on her lips..."Gabrielle." Xena whispered.

Gabrielle opened her eyes to find her warrior lying next to her with a smile on her face.

"Xena!" she replied with a smile as she leaned to Xena and kissed her.

"I have breakfast in bed for you my love."

"Did you cook it?" Gabrielle replied with a smile.

"We said for eternity Gabrielle with our vows and you know if I where to cook you would break those vows." Xena answered with a laugh.

Gabrielle smiled..."that is so incredibly sweet of you."

Xena held the rose in front of Gabrielle..."this signifies the first day of the rest of our lives together and to remind you of my undying love for you." Xena replied with a loving smile for her bard.

Gabrielle put her hand on Xena’s cheek..."i will always love you Xena." Gabrielle leaned in and kissed Xena.

Xena woke before Gabrielle as usual and thought about how she never tires of seeing

how peaceful her beautiful bride looks when she sleeps. Xena lightly brushed Gabrielle's

hair off of her face as her bard laid snuggled tightly against her and placed a soft kiss

on her forehead.

Gabrielle opened her eyes to find her warrior watching her sleep.

"Good morning Gabrielle." Xena replied as she kissed Gabrielle's lips.

"It is now." Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"What are your plans for today Gabrielle?"

"The number one priority of the day is breakfast." Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"I know that everything is secondary to food Gabrielle." Xena replied with a smile.

"Not everything Xena." Gabrielle answered playfully as she bit Xena's lip and placed a

kiss on it.

"Ooh, I like that...but getting back to the question...after breakfast what are your plans?"

"I thought I would hang out with Ephiny for awhile...she has been down about something."

"Is it because of Blaise?" Xena asked with worry.

"I'm really not sure...she really hasn't said anything about it but I know something is

bothering her and I thought she could use a friend to speak with."

Gabrielle's stomach growled from hunger..."I guess it is time to eat then." Xena laughed.

Blaise stood on the cliff overlooking the lake wearing only a sports bra and black boxer

shorts revealing her very muscular body. She was practicing her martial arts and stood

upright before turning around.

"Hello daddy!" Blaise replied sarcastically as she turned to find Ares walking out from

behind a tree.

"I don't know how you and Xena do that but I love it so much!" Ares answered with a sly

grin.

"What do you want!" Blaise replied with disgust.

"What is wrong with daddy’s little protege?" Ares answered sarcastically.

"I'm sick of your lies!...be straight with me...got it?!" Blaise shouted with anger.

"Oh, I so love it when you are angry." Ares answered with a sly grin.

"You haven't seen angry yet...but keep it up and you will!"

"What did daddy lie to his little girl about?" Ares asked tauntingly.

"Let's see...aah..everything?" Blaise answered with sarcasm..."how could you take me

from my family and tell me that my own sister killed them?"

"Blaise...I do what I have to do to get what I want." Ares answered nonchalantly.

"At the expense of your own daughter?" Blaise yelled in anger.

"I do regret the way I handled everything Blaise but you know your brother Cupid isn't

going to take my place and I needed an heir."

"Why tell me my sister killed my family then?"

"I had to tell you your family was dead to keep you from them and I told you Xena did

it because I wanted you to kill her when she rejected my offer to join me."

"You are one sick bastard!...why didn't you just kill her yourself?"

"Call it sick but I wanted to see my favorite child kill my insubordinate one." Ares replied with a smile.

"One day this will all come back to bite you in the ass!" Blaise shouted with anger as she

pointed at Ares.

"Yeah, yeah...whatever." Ares answered with a flick of his hand to brush off the threat..."I want you to begin taking on your duties as my representative on earth...I want you to

start training for your rightful place on my throne fulfilling your destiny."

"I know what my destiny is and I’ll take on those duties on my own terms...I will

do them at my own time...got that?" Blaise snapped as she stood in Ares’s face.

"Now...Blaise...you need to stop all of this nonsense of getting to know your sister

better and shacking up with that amazon queen wannabe...although, the alliance with

your sister and the amazons pledging their allegiance to me could serve a great purpose

for me...that is...if you can talk your sister into it." Ares answered with cockiness

as he scratched his chin at the thought and smiled.

"You think I'm getting closer to Xena and Ephiny for your purposes?" Blaise shouted.

"Well...aren't you?"

"No!...I happen to love Xena and I care for Ephiny very much." Blaise answered in disgust

at Ares' assumption.

"Oh, isn't that sweet." Ares replied with sarcasm and disgust..."I knew I should have kept

my meddling sister Aphrodite away from you...she has made you soft!"

"Well...maybe if you would have taken more of an interest in me...never mind...I'm glad

you didn't because then I would have turned out to be a jackass like you."

"Oooh, I just love to piss you off...remember this little one...I will do anything to get

what I want even if that means that people close to you will get hurt and I want you to

start your duties." Ares demanded with anger as he moved closer to Blaise.

Blaise became angered and grabbed Ares by his vest lifting him off the ground.

"Now...that's my girl!...let daddy see the anger in your eyes." Ares replied with a laugh.

Blaise threw Ares against a tree...Ares laughed as he stood up and brushed the dirt off of

his clothes..."I just love it when you get rough with me." Ares replied with a proud smile.

"I swear to you father...if anything happens to anyone close to me I will kill you!" Blaise yelled.

"Don't threaten me like that Blaise because I want you to take my throne."

"How would you like this then?...I'll kill you and declare that some incompetent warrior wannabe like that guy Joxer will take your place as God of War." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"You wouldn't dare!" Ares answered with worry at the thought of Joxer as the next God of War.

"Try me!" Blaise answered with a sly grin.

"Well...I guess I was wrong about my little girl." Ares replied as he slid his finger down

Blaise's face..."you aren't as soft as I thought." Ares smiled and blew Blaise a kiss as he disappeared.

Blaise did a swift chopping blow with her hand on a tree branch splintering it into pieces to take out her frustrations..."aaah!" Blaise yelled out.

Blaise dressed and headed back to the village.

Gabrielle found Ephiny sitting at a table by herself lost in her thoughts.

"Good morning Ephiny."

"Oh, hello Gabrielle." Ephiny answered startled because she didn’t hear Gabrielle

approach.

"How are you?"

"I could be better Gabrielle." Ephiny answered with a look of sadness.


"What's wrong?" Gabrielle asked as she held her friends hand for comfort.

"It's Blaise...she has been very distant and distracted lately...I can't get her to open up to

me and we have not been together for a couple of weeks now."

"That is a problem if Blaise is skipping out on sex...oh, Ephiny I'm sorry I was so insensitive...I didn't mean it the way that it came out."

"No offense taken Gabrielle...Blaise has been very mysterious lately...she is out of bed

before I awake and she comes to bed after I have fallen asleep." Ephiny looked down with

tears in her eyes.

Ephiny and Gabrielle heard loud laughing coming from across the village. They noticed

Blaise and Solari where carrying on a candid conversation with allot of laughing and joking with one another.

"She is pushing me out of her life for some reason Gabrielle...I can feel it."" Ephiny

replied with sadness and she began to cry.

Blaise and Ephiny's eyes met from across the village and Blaise's smile left her face when

she saw that Ephiny was crying. Blaise found it hard to look at Ephiny and kept her head

down as she left the area.

"Ephiny...I'm sure that’s not true...I will talk to Xena and maybe Blaise will open up to

her about what is going on...O.K.?"

"Thanks Gabrielle." Ephiny answered as Gabrielle patted her hand for reassurance and

went off to search for her warrior.

Gabrielle found Xena at the training area leading a defense class.

"Xena...I need to talk to you for a moment."

"What's up honey?" Xena asked slightly out of breath from her activities.

"It's Blaise...Ephiny said she has been distant, distracted, mysterious and she thinks she is pushing her out of her life."

"Gabrielle...come on...I'm the same way...I really don't think it’s anything to worry

about."

"Xena...they haven't had sex in two weeks!"

Xena raised her eyebrow..."you're right...there is a problem if Blaise has gone that long

without sex...I will talk to her." Xena replied with a smile..."aah...Gabrielle...promise

me that if something is bothering you that you’ll tell me instead of depriving me of

sex for that long."

"Now...you should know better than that Xena...you know I won't allow myself to be

deprived of sex!" Gabrielle replied with a flirtatious smile as she cuddled up to her

sweaty warrior and kissed her.

"Do we still have a date for lunch today my bard?"

"As we do everyday my love." Gabrielle answered with a sexy smile.

Xena kissed Gabrielle goodbye and watched as her wife strode out of her sight...."By the gods I love that woman". Xena thought to herself.

Xena saw Blaise riding from the stables on Taz.

"Hey, Blaise!" Xena shouted to get her attention.

"Not now Xena...later!" Blaise shouted back as she rode off out of the village followed by Solari.

"What's up with that?" Xena thought with confusion as she went back to teaching her class.

Xena and Gabrielle where having their lunch date near the lake. "Xena...did you talk to Blaise?"

"No...she rode off and told me she would talk to me later."

"Ephiny is very upset Xena."

"I'm sure she is Gabrielle but I can't find anything out from my sister until I can get her to

stay in one place for two minutes."

"Put the pinch on her Xena and that should get her attention." Gabrielle answered with a smile as she bit into her cheese.

"I'm sure she would love that!" Xena laughed..."but I may have to resort to that though." Xena smiled..."try to find out more from Ephiny...maybe they had a fight or something.

"O.K. I will see what I can find out from her."

"Maybe she is stressed out because mother will be here in a few days."

"I have faith you will get to the bottom of it my love...I'm surprised we haven't noticed anything was wrong with Blaise in the first place."

"Well...Gabrielle..you have been keeping me prisoner in our hut and taking advantage of me since our joining...I ‘m amazed you knew something was up with Ephiny." Xena

answered with a sexy smile.

"Very funny warrior princess about me keeping you prisoner...if I remember correctly

you wouldn't allow me to dress in anything but the lingerie I received for the joining

which makes it hard for me to perform my royal duties and be taken seriously."

"Well...can I help it if you look so very sexy in the lingerie? ...I did allow you to wear

your robe for some of your royal duties...by the way did I ever tell you how turned on I would get knowing you where wearing that sexy lingerie under your royal robe?" Xena asked

with a sly grin on her face.

"No...you neglected to tell me that my love...it's a good thing Ephiny didn't notice when

we had to discuss daily royal duties because I would have been very embarrassed!...I

wouldn't have noticed anything was up between Ephiny and Blaise if she wasn't kind

enough to join me here because you wanted to keep me to yourself." Gabrielle answered

with a smile.

"Can I help it if I want to keep you to myself?...come here my little peasant girl." Xena replied as Gabrielle sat between her legs and leaned back against her.

"We need to discuss the peasant girl and goddess sex game by the way because I’m tired of

being the peasant girl."

Xena wrapped her strong arms around Gabrielle and placed tender kisses along Gabrielle's neck.

"I didn't hear you complaining the other night about being the peasant girl." Xena

whispered in Gabrielle's ear.

"Yeah...well...I am now and you are going to be the peasant girl from now on." Gabrielle replied with a smile.

"As you wish my goddess." Xena answered as she continued her kisses along Gabrielle's

neck and moved her hands up from Gabrielle's waist to caress her breasts.

Gabrielle moved her head back in pleasure from Xena's touch.

"Make love to me my bacchae." Gabrielle moaned.

"Oh, so you like me biting your neck for a change, huh?"

"Of course, now...touch me and feel how wet you have made me!" Gabrielle demanded.

Xena slid her hand down Gabrielle's leg and moved her hand under her skirt to feel her wetness.

"I guess you do like it when I bite your neck...you are so wet and you feel so good Gabrielle." Xena whispered as she separated Gabrielle’s folds to rub her finger over

her swollen nub.

"Oh, Xena...that feels so good." Gabrielle moaned as she turned to straddle Xena and

wrapped her arms around her warrior's neck.

They began to kiss passionately exploring each other's mouths with their tongues. Xena

slid her finger inside of Gabrielle's wet opening as Gabrielle moved her hips forward

and backward in response to Xena's movement of her finger in and out of her.

"Oh, Xena." Gabrielle moaned as she leaned her head back in pleasure.

Xena kissed down Gabrielle's exposed neck to her breasts where she began to suck her

erect nipple. Gabrielle began to move her hips faster as Xena moved her finger in and out

of her opening faster.

"Let me have you my love." Xena whispered seductively.

Gabrielle released her orgasm and moaned in pleasure as her body trembled from the

exctasy she had just experienced. Gabrielle brought her head back up to look into Xena's

eyes. Gabrielle's hair fell in front of her face and Xena brushed it away placing a kiss on

her soft lips.

"Gabrielle...you are so incredibly sexy."

Gabrielle smiled as she gazed into Xena's beautiful blue eyes and moved her hands up

tieback of Xena's neck. She pulled Xena's mouth to her own. Gabrielle licked and

sucked Xena's lip, then repeated the movement again before entering Xena's mouth with

her tongue.

Gabrielle gave Xena a deep passionate kiss as she hugged her attentive lover tight.

"Xena...you make me feel incredible!" Gabrielle exclaimed with a smile..."Now...it's my

turn!"

"Oh, how I want that to happen but we will have to finish this later darling...we have a

full afternoon of duties or did you forget?" Xena answered with a smile as she kissed

Gabrielle's neck.

"Aah...Gabrielle moaned... I forgot!...I was too preoccupied to remember. " Gabrielle

answered with a smile.

Xena kissed Gabrielle and they both stood up to straighten out their clothes and hair.

"Xena...do I have the I just had sex look?" Gabrielle asked as she straightened her skirt.

"Yes." Xena answered with a smirk as she put her armor back on.

"Really?...is it my hair or my clothes that needs to be fixed?" Gabrielle asked with worry.

"It is neither...it's from the smile on your face." Xena answered with a laugh.

Gabrielle punched Xena in the arm..."do my clothes look all right?" Gabrielle responded

with slight irritation from the teasing.

"You look fine Gabrielle!" Xena replied with a smile as she leaned down to kiss her wife.

They ended their kiss and walked off towards the village hand in hand.

Later in the day Gabrielle ran into Ephiny.

"Gabrielle did Xena talk to Blaise?"

"Aah...no sorry Ephiny...Xena didn't have time yet but she will...Ephiny can you think of anything which happened that might have bothered Blaise?"

"I have thought over many things but I think it might be because I told her that I'm in love

with her and I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her...I thought she felt the same way

and now I think it might have scared her off."

"Don't think that way Ephiny...it could just be that she is preoccupied with her mother's impending arrival."

"I hope that’s the reason Gabrielle because I don’t want to lose her." Ephiny answered

as tears filled her eye.

"I'm sure that’s what it is Ephiny...come on let’s go do some sparring to take your mind

off of Blaise."

Gabrielle put her arm around Ephiny and they headed off to the training area.

Blaise and Solari entered the tavern and sat down at the open table in the corner. Blaise motioned to the bar keep for two ports.

"What's wrong Blaise?...you seem agitated."

"Aah...it's nothing."

"Come on ...you can tell me...that’s what friends are for silly." Solari answered with a

smile.

"Well...my father has been bugging me to take on more duties as his representative on

earth."

"Are you going to do it?"

"I have no choice...it’s my duty to take on those responsibilities and my destiny to take

his place as God of War." Blaise explained as the bar keep delivered the port and Blaise

began to drink hers.

"Aah..ha." Solari replied with an unusual look.

"What is it?" Blaise answered confused.

"That could be a huge problem with Ephiny."

"How do you mean Solari?" Blaise answered with concern.

"Well...Blaise the amazons are Ephiny's life...she would never leave the amazons for

anyone else." Solari explained as she sipped her port.

Blaise put her port down..."maybe she won't have to leave them Solari."

"Blaise think about the danger her alliance with you would bring to the amazons...think of

the danger she would be placed in if she stayed at the amazon village...the only way for her

and the rest of the amazons to be safe would be if she lived at Olympus...besides, the

amazons come first in her life and she would not leave us for anyone...she has done the

same with past lovers...I'm sorry if I have hurt you by what I have said Blaise."

"It hurts but I appreciate the information Solari." Blaise answered with sadness as she

raised her mug for a long drink..." I don't get it though...she told me she loved me and said

she wanted to spend the rest of her life with me." Blaise replied with confusion.

"Blaise...let me tell you something about Ephiny...she uses that line very loosely as if it

means nothing to her...I know this is going to hurt you even more but she has been with another woman recently."

"You mean before her and I got together right?" Blaise asked anxiously hoping she had not been with anyone since they became lovers.

"No...I'm sorry to say that she has been with her quite frequently lately." Solari took

another drink from her mug.

"What?!...How?...When?" Blaise became angered.

"When you have been out hunting, training or when you were on patrol." Solari answered smugly.

"I can't believe it." Blaise answered with bewilderment..."I think I'm going to be sick!"

Blaise got up out of her chair and ran out of the tavern.

Blaise choked as if she was to vomit and leaned over gasping for air. She felt as though

her heart had been ripped out of her chest. She continued her deep breathing to fight off

the nausea.

"Please...don’t hurt me!" a voice yelled.

Blaise looked up to see who yelled and noticed two men beating a defenseless man who

was on the ground. Blaise ran over and pulled one man off who attempted to punch her.

"Oh, I’m in no mood for you dude!" Blaise replied with anger as she punched him

in the mouth sending him flying on his back side unconscious.

Blaise grabbed the other guy and pushed him away from the defenseless man.

"Salmoneus?" Blaise asked as she recognized the injured man..."what is going on?" she

asked as she helped him up.

"Blaise...you remembered me!" Salmoneus exclaimed with excitement.

"What’s the meaning of this?" Blaise asked the other man with anger.

"He scammed me on a deal we had and I want him to pay up!"

"So, it takes two of you to beat a defenseless man!" Blaise shouted with anger..."what

deal Salmoneus?" Blaise asked as she turned to Salmoneus..."is this true?"

"I didn’t scam him Blaise." Salmoneus answered nervously.

"You took my dinars and produced no singer like you promised!" The man yelled.

"I couldn’t help it...the singer I had took off with your deposit you gave me and I haven’t

been able to find a replacement." Salmoneus explained with a nervous look on his face.

"How long do you need this singer for?" Blaise asked.

"For the next two nights."

"O.K. I will do it to fulfill his obligation and Salmoneus you owe me big time!" Blaise

answered as she pointed at Salmoneus.

Salmoneus dropped to his knees and grabbed Blaise’s hand..."oh, Blaise anything...thank

you ...I will do whatever you say."

"O.K., O.K. get up!" Blaise answered with embarrassment.

"Excuse me...but who are you and how do I know you will draw a big enough crowd?"

The man asked.

Salmoneus staggered to a standing position ..."her sister is the warrior princess and her

father is Ares...God of War...I guarantee she will draw an enormous crowd with my publicity!"

"I’m not too happy with your guarantees...she better draw a big crowd or you’re a dead

man!" the man shouted as he walked away.

"Blaise...please tell me you’re a good singer?" Salmoneus asked nervously..."of course,

you are...you must be...Xena is a great singer." he answered with a nervous laugh.

"Take it easy Salmoneus...I can sing...don’t worry...I have to head back to the village to

pick up a few things and I will join you later."

"O.K. Blaise...thanks...is there anything I can do for you in the mean time?"

"Yeah...stay out of trouble little man!"

"I can do that Blaise...I’m going to hand out some flyers for tonight’s show and I

promise to stay out of trouble." He answered with a laugh.

Blaise walked off towards the stables as Solari caught up to her.

"Are you O.K. Blaise?" Solari asked.

"Oh, sure Solari...the love of my life is having an affair and now I just agreed to sing

in front of a bunch of women...couldn’t be better!" Blaise answered sarcastically and

with anger.

Blaise mounted Taz and rode off out of town back towards the village. Once back at the

village Blaise began to attend to feeding Taz.

"Listen...Blaise... I’m sorry I had to tell you of Ephiny’s indiscretion’s and hurt you...

I will be here for you if you need someone." Solari replied with a slight smile.

"Thanks...I appreciate it Solari."

"Well...I will see you at the show then." Solari answered as she left the stables.

Blaise leaned her head on Taz’s neck and began to cry.

Xena entered the stables..."Hey, Blaise...got a minute?"

"Not really Xena I’m in a hurry." Blaise answered as she wiped away her tears and

put her head down to walk past Xena.

Xena grabbed her arm and stopped her..."you will spare a minute for me Blaise." Xena

demanded.

"No...I won’t Xena...I told you I’m in a hurry!" Blaise answered as she continued to

keep her head down and jerked her arm away from Xena as she walked away.

"What is going on with you?"

Blaise stopped in her tracks with her back to Xena..."it’s none of your concern...so,

stay out of it!" Blaise answered with anger as she walked out of the stables.

Blaise entered their hut and was relieved to find Ephiny was not there. She collected her

clothes and put them in her backpack.

"Sweetpea!" Aphrodite exclaimed as she appeared..."how’s the love life?" she asked with

excitement.

"It bites Aphie!" Blaise snapped back.

Aphrodite realized Blaise was upset and moved over to her. She took Blaise’s face in her

hands..."baby...what happened?"

"Ephiny has been with another woman since we got together." Blaise answered as she

sniffed back tears.

"Oh, I’m so sorry honey." Aphrodite answered as she hugged and kissed Blaise to console

her.

Ephiny entered the hut to find Blaise in the arms of a very scantily dressed woman.

"Blaise!...what in tartarus is going on?" Ephiny shouted.

Blaise and Aphrodite where startled by Ephiny and turned towards her.

"Who is that bimbo!" Ephiny shouted.

"Bimbo!" Aphrodite exclaimed with disgust as she moved away from Blaise..."why I

outta..." Blaise interrupt her.

"This bimbo is my aunt!...Aphrodite...the Goddess of Love!" Blaise answered with anger

"Hey, watch it with the bimbo stuff!" Aphrodite whined.

Ephiny began to cry from embarrassment and left the hut.

"I can’t believe she called me a bimbo!"

"Sorry Aphie...I will catch you later!"

Blaise ran out of the hut after Ephiny and found her standing between two huts crying.

"Ephiny!"

Ephiny kept her back to Blaise..."Blaise...I think you should leave...I can no longer

take this..." Ephiny stopped her sentence.

"Is that what you want?"

Ephiny nodded her head yes.

Blaise reached her hand up towards Ephiny’s head to stroke her hair and comfort her

but took her hand away. Blaise thought that even though Ephiny had hurt her she

couldn’t stand to see her upset but it was Ephiny’s decision for her to leave.

"Okay Ephiny." Blaise answered holding back her tears and walked out of site towards

the stables.

Ephiny dropped to her knees and cried as Blaise rode off out of her life.

Xena entered the hut disgusted by her conversation with Blaise.

"Did you speak to Blaise Xena?" Gabrielle asked.

"Yep and she told me to butt out."

"What is going on?" Gabrielle asked confused.

"I’m not sure...but I intend to find out just as soon as I see Solari leave the village."

Xena informed Gabrielle.

"Solari?...what does she have to do with all of this?"

"I’m not sure but I have my suspicions." Xena answered as she looked out of the hut

towards the stables.

"What should I tell Ephiny?"

"That I’m working on it...I will see you later tonight...Solari is on the move." Xena

replied as she kissed Gabrielle goodbye and left their hut to follow Solari.

Xena whistled for Argo and mounted her mare on the run.

Xena stayed at a safe distance from Solari to not be spotted. Xena lost site of Solari once

she entered the crowded town square. Xena stabled Argo and began to check the taverns for Blaise and Solari. Xena had no luck in finding the pair and noticed a large crowd of

women making their way into the dance club. Xena headed to the club and thought that

it wouldn’t hurt to check it out.

Xena was stopped at the door by the bouncer who asked for five dinars for her to enter

the club.

"Five dinars!...are you crazy!" Xena replied with agitation.

"Then we can’t let you in lady."

Xena noticed Salmoneus standing just inside the club..."Salmoneus!" Xena replied under

her breath with anger and tossed five dinars to the bouncer as she entered the club to find

Salmoneus.

"Xe...Xena!" Salmoneus replied with nervousness.

"What are you doing in here?...exploiting these women?"

"Watching my client Xena...I’m on the up and up so you can move along now." he

answered with a nervous smile as he tried to get her to leave the club.

"Whose your client?" Xena asked as she crossed her arms over her chest.

Salmoneus hung his head down knowing that Xena would be mad to find out that Blaise

is his client..."my client is on stage."

Xena looked up at the stage and uncrossed her arms when she noticed it was Blaise who

was singing on stage..."what in tartarus is going on?" Xena answered with anger..."are

you exploiting Blaise?" Xena asked as she grabbed a handful of Salmoneus’ colorful silk

clothing.

"No...Xena...I swear it!...she is helping me out of a jam that I got myself into okay."

"I can’t believe this!" Xena answered with a laugh as she released Salmoneus’ clothing.

"She is an excellent singer Xena...just like you." Salmoneus answered with a smile.

Xena listened as Blaise sang and watched as the crowd of women went crazy for her.

"She really is a good singer Salmoneus and I can’t get over how the crowd is responding

to her."

"She’s a huge hit and the women love her...say Xena...I could get you fifty dinars a

night to sing here with Blaise." Salmoneus offered with a mischievous grin.

Xena gave him a dirty look..."I don’t think so...besides my wife would never let me

sing to a crazed group of women like that!...I’ll catch you later...I need to talk to Blaise."

Xena made her way through the crowd and waited backstage for Blaise to finish her song.

Blaise finished her song and went backstage to find Xena waiting for her there.

"Blaise...we need to talk."

"Xena...what are you doing here?" Blaise answered with surprise to find Xena there.

"Looking for you...we need to talk...I’m worried about you."

"I can’t talk right now but how about tomorrow?"

"Promise?"

"Yeah...hey, don’t say anything to anyone about this all right?"

"If that’s what you want but I expect our talk tomorrow." Xena answered as she pointed

at Blaise to get her point across.

"Sure...tomorrow." Blaise answered trying to avoid the conversation Xena wanted to

have with her.

Blaise went back onstage and Xena headed back to the village.

Xena entered her hut to find that Gabrielle had not returned from her visit with Ephiny.

Xena took off her armor along with the rest of her clothing and laid prone on the bed

naked to wait for Gabrielle.

"Oh, this feels so good to just lay her and relax." Xena thought to herself..."now, only

if I had my wife here with me it would be perfect!"

Gabrielle entered the hut to find a very naked warrior princess laying on their bed.

"Xena!" Gabrielle replied with excitement from the site of her naked consort laying on

the bed..."did you find Blaise?" Gabrielle asked as she took her clothes off.

"Speak of the little bard" Xena thought to herself..."aah...yeah" Xena answered hesitantly

"but she wanted to wait and talk to me tomorrow...what about Ephiny?"

"I couldn’t find her anywhere!...Blaise has been acting very mysterious lately hasn’t she?

Gabrielle asked as she approached the bed to join Xena.

"Yes...she is but I will find out what’s going on tomorrow."

"Are you okay?"

"Just a little stressed out and upset about Blaise."

"Let me help you with that my love." Gabrielle answered as she climbed on the bed and

began to massage Xena’s shoulders..."how’s that?...is that better?" Gabrielle asked

softly.

"I am now...that’s all I needed to feel better is for you to put your loving hands on me."

Gabrielle placed soft kisses down Xena’s neck and down the middle of her back to her

butt. Gabrielle ran her tongue up Xena’s back to her neck as she laid her naked body

on Xena’s.

"Oh, Gabrielle!...you really know just how to relax me." Xena moaned.

Gabrielle spread her legs and rubbed her center on Xena’s butt so she could enjoy

her wetness.

"Gabrielle...you are so wet." Xena answered in a low tone.

"You make me that way baby." Gabrielle whispered as she began to lightly bite Xena’s

neck and grind her sex on Xena.

"Oooh, my little bacchae!" Xena moaned.

Gabrielle began to move her hips faster rubbing her hard clit against Xena and became

more excited by the movement. Gabrielle slid her hand under Xena’s hips to find her

wet sex and slid her finger between Xena’s folds to rub her swollen nub.

"Oh, baby." Xena moaned.

Gabrielle thrust her hips harder as she rubbed her fingers faster over Xena’s nub and

Xena began to move her hips in rhythm with Gabrielle’s. They continued to move faster

and faster until they both reached climax at the same time both letting out a satisfying

moan.

Xena rolled over on her back as Gabrielle laid on top of her. She kissed Gabrielle

passionately as she held her naked wife in her arms and loved the feeling of Gabrielle’s

body on her own.

Xena stopped her kiss..."that was wonderful baby." Xena replied with a smile as she

kissed Gabrielle again and stopped..."I loved feeling you all over me Gabrielle." Xena

kissed her deeper as she ran her hands through Gabrielle’s hair and pushed it off of her

face.

Xena stopped her kiss and looked into Gabrielle’s beautiful green eyes..."I love you."

Xena replied as she kissed her again.

"I love you Xena." Gabrielle answered as she nuzzled her face down against Xena’s

neck spent from their passion.

Xena woke to find Gabrielle placing kisses on her neck, then her chin, her cheek, to

her forehead and down her nose to her lips. Gabrielle slid her tongue along Xena’s lips

licking them and entered her tongue in her mouth for a passionate kiss. Gabrielle slid her

tongue along her lips again and kissed her as she gazed into her lover’s blue eyes.

"I hope you wake me up like that every morning...that is definitely better than waking

up to foot rot in my face!" Xena replied with a smile.

"Very funny warrior princess."

"Well...baby I would love to stay in bed with you all day but unfortunately we have

some duties to deal with today."

"I guess I’ll have to take a rain check then." Gabrielle answered with a sexy smile as

she watched her warrior slide out of bed.

Xena leaned down to kiss her wife before getting dressed.

Xena noticed Gabrielle was watching her every move with a sly grin on her face. Xena

looked up at Gabrielle..."do you like what you see?" She asked with a smile.

"Oh, yes...I love to look at your naked body!" Gabrielle answered with a sexy smile as

she climbed out of bed to get dressed.

Xena took Gabrielle in her arms..."last night was wonderful baby." Xena replied as she

leaned down and kissed Gabrielle.

"Anytime you need a massage you know where to find me." Gabrielle answered with a

chuckle.

"I will see you later my love." Xena answered as she kissed Gabrielle goodbye.

Xena put on her chakram and sword as she exited the hut.

Gabrielle took a deep breath and stretched with a big smile on her face. "I have never

been so happy in my whole life." she thought to herself.

Xena stopped at Ephiny’s to find Blaise and knocked before entering.

"Go away...I’m not seeing anyone today." Ephiny announced.

Xena peeked her head in the door..." Ephiny it’s me...everything okay?"

"Didn’t you hear what I said Xena?" Ephiny answered with anger.

Xena saw that Ephiny was upset and crying. Xena moved over to Ephiny who was sitting

in a chair and put her hand on Ephiny’s shoulder to comfort her.

"What’s going on Ephiny?"

"I asked Blaise to leave Xena." Ephiny answered as she lowered her head and began to

cry harder.

"Why? What happened?" Xena asked with confusion.

"Well...Solari told me that Blaise had taken another lover and I saw her in the arms of

Aphrodite last night...I was so hurt that I snapped and insulted the Goddess of Love

which angered Blaise...I didn’t know who she was at the time...I asked Blaise to leave

because I can’t stand the thought of her being with another and acting as if it’s no big

deal." Ephiny began to cry harder.

"Hey, come on now." Xena replied as she squatted down next to Ephiny and held her

hand...."I know my sister is a flirt but she care’s for you a great deal and I don’t believe

what Solari told you is true Ephiny...I intend to find out what is going on with my sister

so, try not to worry too much."

"Thanks for your help Xena...I hope you’re right."

"I’m going to send Gabrielle in to be with you while I go and hunt my sister down."

Xena answered as as she patted Ephiny’s hand for comfort.

"Okay. thanks again." Ephiny replied as she wiped her tears away.

Xena exited her hut and went back to get Gabrielle.

"Gabrielle...can you go in and stay with Ephiny?...she’s really upset."

"Why? What happened?" Gabrielle asked with concern.

"She asked Blaise to leave because she found out from Solari that Blaise had taken

another lover."

"I find that hard to believe Xena." Gabrielle answered with a frown.

"I feel the same way and I’m going to get to the bottom of this once and for all."

"I better not find out Solari is doing anything underhanded." Gabrielle stated firmly...

"I’ll go and see how Ephiny is doing...I’ll see you later."

They both exited their hut and went their separate ways.

Xena asked around the village for the where abouts of Blaise or Solari and none of the

amazons had seen either of them. Xena mounted Argo and headed out of the village in

search of her sister.

Gabrielle had calmed Ephiny down enough to get her out of the hut and to get something

to eat. As they finished...Gabrielle noticed two people entering the village with an

amazon escort.

"Cyrene!" Gabrielle shouted and waved.

"Who is it Gabrielle?" Ephiny asked.

"It’s Xena’s mother and brother." Gabrielle answered as she headed over to greet them.

"Gabrielle!" Cyrene replied with excitement and hugged her..."we are so sorry we

couldn’t make it to the joining."

"We sure missed you both and you missed out on a beautiful ceremony Cyrene."

Gabrielle answered with a smile..."hello Tarus!" Gabrielle exclaimed as she hugged him.

"Welcome to the family Gabrielle." He answered as they broke their hug.

"Come...let me get you settled." Gabrielle answered as she motioned for them to follow

her..."guards...take their belongings to the hut next to mine and stable their horses

please." Gabrielle ordered.

"Yes...my queen." the guards answered with a bow and set off to carry out their orders.

"Gabrielle...you’re a queen?" Cyrene asked with confusion.

"Xena didn’t tell you?" Gabrielle answered with surprise.

"No...she didn’t."

"I will have to speak with her regarding that then." Gabrielle replied with a smile..."Oh,

where are my manners...let me introduce you to Ephiny." Gabrielle replied as she put

her arm around Ephiny to introduce her to Xena’s family..."Ephiny takes on my duties

as queen in my absence...Ephiny this is Cyrene, Xena’s mother and Tarus, her

brother."

"Hello...it’s a pleasure to meet you both." Ephiny replied as she shook both of their

hands..."welcome to amazon nation...please...let me know if there is anything that you

need." Ephiny informed the two with a smile.

"Thank you very much Ephiny." Cyrene answered with a smile.

"I must excuse myself now...Gabrielle I will speak more with you later." Ephiny

replied as she retreated to her hut.

"She’s a very lovely young lady...don’t you think Tarus? Cyrene replied as she nudged

her son.

"Yes...mother she is." Tarus answered as her rolled his as at his mother’s insistence to

play matchmaker..."where’s Xena?"

"Uhmmm...she had some duties to attend to and I expect her to return shortly...I must

tell you that Ephiny is already spoken for...well...never mind." Gabrielle answered

hesitantly so as to not have to tell them about Blaise..."let me ge you settled

into your hut."

Gabrielle escorted them to their hut and helped them get unpacked.

"Gabrielle!" Xena shouted as she dismounted Argo.

Gabrielle exited the hut..."Xena...your mother and brother have arrived."

"They have!" Xena answered with surprise..."I was expecting them to arrive in a couple

of more days."

"Xena...I didn’t tell them about Blaise...I felt it was your place to do that."

"Thanks I appreciate that Gabrielle."

"Did you find Blaise.?"

"No...I have searched everywhere and there is no sign of her or Solari." Xena answered

with anger from her futile search.

"That’s strange...you should go in and see your family."

Xena put her arm around Gabrielle and they walked into her mother’s hut.

"Mother, Tarus!" Xena replied.

"Xena!" Cyrene exclaimed as she ran over and hugged her daughter.

Xena broke their hug..."Tarus!" Xena replied with a smile as she hugged her brother.

"Hey...Xena how’s it going?"

"Could be better...listen I need to tell you something...go ahead and sit down."

They both did as Xena said..."what’s wrong Xena?" Cyrene asked with worry.

"Well...mother I don’t know how to tell you this." Xena answered seriously.

"What is it...you are scaring me Xena." Cyrene replied.

"Don’t worry it’s something you will be very happy about." Xena sat in front of her

mother and held her hand to calm her..."the baby you thought died is very much alive."

"Xena...it can’t be." Cyrene answered with a look of shock.

"It’s true and she’s a wonderful person."

"how can that be?...I was told that she was dead." Cyrene answered in bewilderment.

"Well...Ares took her from you at birth and instructed the midwife to tell you she had

died."

"Why would he take the baby?" Cyrene asked with confusion as Tarus put his arm

around his mother to comfort her.

"He is her father...seems Ares paid a visit to you twice...once with me and once again

producing Blaise."

"Blaise?...that’s her name?" Cyrene asked.

"Yes...your daughter’s name is Blaise."

Cyrene stood up and walked around in a daze shocked from what Xena just told her.

"This is unbelievable...how could I have been with Ares twice and not know about it?...

I should have knew it was him and not my husband."

"Cyrene...it wasn’t your fault...how would you have known that Ares took the form

of your husband?" Gabrielle asked trying to ease the guilt Cyrene felt.

"I should have known...where is she now?...I want to meet her?"

"Well...she had a breakup with Ephiny and I have been unable to find her...but I know

where she will be later this evening for sure." Xena answered.

"This is so unbelievable... I have another sister?" Tarus asked with disbelief..."mother

you tried to fix me up with my sister’s lover!"

"How was I suppose to know that Tarus!...I can’t believe my baby is alive!" Cyrene

replied with a smile and began to cry tears of joy..."oh, this has been a bit overwhelming

I need to lay down and rest."

"We will leave if you are sure you want to be alone mother." Xena answered with worry

about her mother.

Cyrene laid down on the bed..."yes... I will be fine I just need some rest."

The trio exited the hut to allow Cyrene the rest she requested.

"Gabrielle...I want you to meet me at the dance club in town in a couple of candle

marks...Bring Ephiny with you and mother will probably want to join you also."

"Okay I will meet you there but what are you going to do?"

"I’m going to continue my search for Blaise or Solari to find out what’s going on and

then I will meet you at the club later."

"I will bring them there Xena." Gabrielle answered as she kissed Xena.

"Do you need some help Xena?" Tarus asked.

"Sure...if you don’t mind tagging along."

"Bye Gabrielle." Xena replied as she winked to her wife and headed off towards the

stables.

"Bye." Gabrielle answered as she headed off to her hut.

Tarus and Xena searched for over a candle mark and a half with no luck in finding the pair.

"Where in tartarus could they be?" Xena asked with anger..."wait a minute." Xena

replied as she noticed Solari walking across the town square heading their way..."come

here." Xena replied as she grabbed Tarus’ arm and they ducked in behind a cart.

"Is that Blaise?" Tarus asked.

"No...it’s Solari." Xena answered with a low tone in her voice and a sneer on her face.

Solari walked by and Xena grabbed her by the arm to stop her. "Solari!" Xena replied with a sarcastic smile.

"Xena...what’s going on?"

"How about if you answer that question for me."

"What are you talking about?" Solari asked confused.

"I’m talking about Blaise and Ephiny." Xena answered with anger.

"What about them Xena?...I don’t know what you are talking about."

"Solari...don’t make me put the pinch on you to get what I’m looking for got it?!" Xena

shouted as ah moved in closer to Solari.

"Alright...I’ll tell you ...just don’t put the pinch on me."

"Start talking!"

Solari put her head down in shame..."I tried to break up Blaise and Ephiny."

"Well...it looks like you succeeded with your plan...why did you do it?...and how?"

Xena asked with agitation.

"I told Ephiny that Blaise was with another woman and I told Blaise the same about

Ephiny...I did it because I’m in love with Blaise and I wanted her to be with me."

"You betrayed your friend and your queen with your lies Solari!" Xena yelled..."Get

out of Blaise and Ephiny’s life Solari!...by the way get out of my site while you’re at it...

you disgust me!"

Solari began to cry..."I’m sorry Xena." Solari replied as she walked away.

"Don’t tell me you’re sorry tell it to your friends who you betrayed!...unbelievable!"

Xena answered with disgust.

"Does Blaise love Ephiny Xena?" Tarus asked.

"More than she wants to admit...come on." Xena answered as they headed off towards the

club.

They where both stopped by the bouncer at the door to pay the cover.

"Yeah...yeah...here is enough for us and three other family members who will be here

shortly...there will be an incredibly sexy little blond with another woman and my

mother so, let them in." Xena instructed with agitation.

"You got it." the doorman replied.

Xena and Tarus made their way through the crowded bar and headed towards the

backstage area.

"Why is it so crowded in here Xena?"

"Because of her!" Xena answered as she pointed at Blaise who entered the stage to sing.

"Is that Blaise?"

"The one and only." Xena answered with a smile.

"She’s gorgeous Xena." Tarus replied admiring his younger sister.

"Xena!...hello!" Salmoneus yelled as he approached her.

"Hey, Salmoneus...this is my brother Tarus...this is Salmoneus." Xena replied as she

introduced the two.

"Nice to meet you Tarus." Salmoneus replied with a smile as he shook Tarus’ hand.

"Same here." Tarus answered.

"She’s really packed this place Xena...she is really a fabulous singer...I wish..."

Xena cut his sentence off..."forget it Salmoneus...I’m not getting up there to sing and I

doubt Blaise will extend her singing career after tonight."

"Well...it’s nice to dream!"

Gabrielle, Ephiny and Cyrene entered the club and took seats at the bar to wait for

Xena.

"It’s Blaise!" Gabrielle exclaimed with surprise..."yes, Blaise!" Gabrielle yelled as

she cheered Blaise on.

"Great just what I need to see is a bunch of women pawing all over Blaise...thanks

Gabrielle!...give me a drink bar keep!" Ephiny replied with disgust.

"She’s beautiful!" Cyrene replied with a smile..."who knew she could sing so good?"

Gabrielle threw her hand up in the air as she danced to the beat of the song..."I knew and

she’s a great dancer too!...I need a dinar I’m going to tip her!" Gabrielle got a dinar from

her pouch and headed towards the stage.

"I’m not going to stay here and watch this display!" Ephiny replied with anger.

"Ephiny...please stay...you must trust that Xena will have everything worked out...don’t

give up just yet." Cyrene replied as she put her hand on Ephiny’s back for comfort.

Ephiny gave Cyrene a long look..."okay...I’ll wait then."

Xena and Tarus went backstage to wait for Blaise. "Xena...I’ll wait outside the door while you talk to her." Tarus replied.

"Okay thanks." Xena answered as she entered the backstage area.

Blaise finished the song and went off stage for a quick break before the next song.

"Xena!" Blaise replied with surprise to see Xena.

"Where have you been all day?...I have looked everywhere for you." Xena asked with

anger.

"Oh, I was hangin’ with Cuppie and Bliss for the day...sorry."

"Cuppie?" Xena asked with a look of confusion.

"Yeah...Cupid our brother...remember?" Blaise answered sarcastically.

"Sorry...I’m having a hard time excepting all of these gods as family...listen, I want to

know..."

Blaise interrupted Xena..."you wanted to know what’s going on with Ephiny and I

right?"

"Yeah...but I need to tell you something."

"No...let me finish Xena...I was trying to push Ephiny out of my life because I didn’t

want her to have to live a life in danger or to have to make a choice between me and

the amazons once I take over as God of War."

"Blaise...you have to let her make that choice for herself...I almost lost Gabrielle

because I did the same thing."

"I realize that now after talking with Cuppie...I just want to hold her in my arms and

feel her heartbeat close to mine again...I don’t care if she was with another woman I’m

willing to forgive her because I love her very much."

"Blaise about Ephiny being with another woman...it never happened...Solari told you

both the same thing about each other so, you would break up."

"But why?" Blaise asked confused.

"She’s in love with you and wanted you to be with her instead of Ephiny."

"By the gods!" Blaise answered with anger as she pounded her fist on the table breaking

it in two..."I hope it’s not too late and she will take me back!"

"I’m sure she will Blaise...she came with Gabrielle and you need to let her know how

you feel about her."

"I intend to do just that Xena...thanks."

"Blaise...you’re on!" Salmoneus shouted.

"Get going!...and break a leg!" Xena replied with a smile.

"Gee thanks!" Blaise answered as she headed towards the stage to be introduced for the

next song.

Xena and Tarus went back to where everyone else was sitting.

"Listen Ephiny...I spoke with Solari today and she lied to you about Blaise being with

another woman."

"She also told Blaise the same about you."

"What!?" Ephiny answered with anger as she turned to face Xena..."Why?"

"Seems she’s in love with Blaise and wanted to break the two of you up so, she could

have Blaise."

Ephiny drank the rest of her port..."I’ll banish her from the amazons...no, better

yet...I think I will kill her!" Ephiny replied with anger.

"Well...she should be punished because she betrayed one of her queens but I think death

is a little harsh." Xena answered with a smile.

"I don’t want to hear anymore about her right now...I just want the love of my life back."

Ephiny answered as she turned to the stage..."Xena...I was stupid to believe Solari’s lies

how can Blaise trust me again?"

"Ephiny...you’re not to blame and why would you not believe what one of your advisors

told you?...Solari has been a trusted friend and advisor for a long time now so, don’t

beat yourself up about it...Blaise will forgive you."

"I guess you’re right Xena...thanks."

"That’s what friends are all about right?" Xena answered with a smile.

Blaise came on stage as the music started which had a slow rhythm to it. Gabrielle began

to dance seductively to the song.

"You go Blaise!" Gabrielle yelled

Xena pulled Gabrielle back against her as Gabrielle continued her dancing. "Aren’t

you a frisky one!" Xena replied with a laugh.

"I love to dance Xena...I would love it if you sang a song for me!"

"Maybe I will sing a song for you in our hut one of there days." Xena answered as she

kissed her wife on the cheek.

Blaise came on stage to begin her song and looked through the crowd to find Ephiny. She

saw Ephiny stand up from the bar stool in the back of the club and her eyes met Ephiny’s

Ephiny moved away from the bar and towards the back of the crowd never taking her

eyes off of Blaise. Blaise began to sing:

I’ll be your dream

I’ll be your wish I’ll be your fantasy

I’ll be your hope I’ll be your love

Be everything that you need

I’ll love you more with every breath

Truly, madly, deeply do

I will be strong I will be faithful

‘cause I’m counting on

A new beginning

A reason for living

A deeper meaning...yeah

I want to stand with you on a mountain

I want to bathe with you in the sea

I want to lay like this forever

Until the sky falls down on me

And when the stars are shining brightly in the velvet sky

I’ll make a wish to send it to heaven

Then make you want to cry

The tears of joy for all the pleasure in certainty

That we’re surrounded by the comfort and protection of

Blaise raised her arms up above her head and sang:

The highest powers ... in lonely hours

Blaise put her arms out in front of her pointing towards Ephiny:

The tears devour you

Blaise put her hands down and made her way through the crowd towards Ephiny as there

was an interlude with music only. Blaise began to sing her part on cue:

I want to stand with you on a mountain

I want to bathe with you in the sea

I want to lay like this forever

Until the sky falls down on me

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Blaise stopped in front of Ephiny:

Oh can you see it baby?

You don’t have to close your eyes

‘Cause it’s standing right here before you

All that you need will surely come

Blaise took both of Ephiny’s hands in her own and knelt before her never losing eye

contact.

I’ll be your dream I’ll be your wish

I’ll be your fantasy

I’ll be your hope I’ll be your love

Be everything that you need

I’ll love you more with every breath

Truly, madly, deeply do...I love you (in a whisper)

Blaise stood up in front of Ephiny and moved in closer to her. Blaise lightly pushed her

hair back off her face. Ephiny smiled as tears filled her eyes.

I want to stand with you on a mountain

I want to bathe with you in the sea

I want to lay like this forever

Until the sky falls down on me

Blaise smiled as she pushed her hair back again and leaned down placing a soft kiss on

her lips. Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise’s waist as they continued their kiss.

The crowd went wild with loud clapping and cheers for Blaise and Ephiny.

Blaise leaned back and smiled..."well?...will you have me forever?"

Ephiny began to cry and smiled back at Blaise..."Yes!...I wouldn’t have it any other

way." Ephiny answered as she hugged and kissed Blaise.

Gabrielle wiped tears from her eyes and turned to Xena..."isn’t that so romantic?"

"Oh, you softy." Xena answered with a smile as she hugged Gabrielle.

"Don’t pretend like it didn’t affect you warrior princess...you can’t fool me...I saw

your eyes pretty misty too." Gabrielle replied as she kissed Xena’s neck.

"It was from the air in here it isn’t very clean." Xena smiled.

Blaise ended their kiss..."I’m sorry baby...I have missed you so much...we need to talk..

let’s get out of here."

"Oh, Blaise!...that was so wonderful." Salmoneus replied through his sobs as he hugged

Blaise..."thank you so much for helping me...I will never forget it...remember anything

that I can do for you don’t hesitate to ask."

"Okay I appreciate the offer little man."

Salmoneus left the group wiping the tears from his eyes with his silk handkerchief.

Blaise turned Ephiny to walk out of the club..."No...Blaise." Ephiny replied as she

stopped..."there are some people here for you to meet." Ephiny turned Blaise around

facing her mother as Xena and Tarus stood on each side of her.

Blaise looked at the woman with confusion and disbelief as she tried to figure out who

she was..."mother?"

"Yes." Cyrene answered as she nodded her head and began to cry.

"By the gods!" Blaise exclaimed as she moved to her mother and wrapped her up in a

hug..."I had always dreamed of the day that I could hold my mother in my arms and now

that the day has come...I don’t want to let go." Blaise replied as tears ran down her face.

Xena knelt her head down to hide her tears of happiness from the reunion she was

witnessing. Gabrielle slid her hand into Xena’s and squeezed her hand for comfort.

Cyrene moved away to look at her daughter and she put her hands on Blaise’s face..."

this is one of the happiest moments in my life." Cyrene replied as she smile and cried...

"I have my baby girl back." she kissed Blaise on the cheek and hugged her again..."I

always wondered what type of a woman you would have become and what you would

have looked like...now I know!...you’re as beautiful as I could have ever imagined."

"Mother...don’t make her head swell any bigger than it already is okay?" Xena replied

with a laugh which everyone else joined in on.

"Your hug mother is more than I could have ever imagined...Aphrodite did the best that

she could but she doesn’t even come close to you...mother." Blaise moved back and

reached for Ephiny’s hand to pull her closer..."mother...have you met the love of my

life?" Blaise asked as she put her arms around her mother and Ephiny.

"Yes...I have darling and she is wonderful...you and Xena have chosen beautiful women

to share your lived with and I am very proud to welcome them to our family...now if I

could only find someone for your brother." Cyrene teased as she looked at Tarus and

laughed.

"This is my big brother?" Blaise asked as she pointed towards Tarus.

"Yes...I am and it’s nice to meet you little sister." Tarus answered as he hugged Blaise.

Gabrielle wiped her tears away..."okay...you are making Xena uncomfortable with all of

the sappy stuff...what do you say we head back to the village?"

"My wife knows me too well." Xena replied with a laugh.

"I need to talk with Ephiny for a few minutes so, we’ll see you back at the village."

"Okay...see you there." Gabrielle replied as she walked by Ephiny and squeezed her

hand flashing her a smile.

"Don’t be late Blaise...mother has a curfew don’t ya know." Xena replied sarcastically

as she walked off towards Gabrielle.

"Oh, Xena...stop your teasing...Blaise can stay out as long as she wants...see you later

honey." Cyrene answered with a smile and kissed Blaise goodbye.

"Tarus...do you see that?...typical youngest child getting everything syndrome!" Xena

teased with a laugh as she began to walk out of the club.

"Seems to me if I remember correctly that you got the same treatment!" Tarus shot back

with a laugh."

"See you later bro!" Blaise replied as Tarus put his hand on her shoulder and pulled her

towards him.

"Let me know if you need any advice with the ladies." He whispered in Blaise’s ear with

a chuckle.

"Very funny bro...from the looks of it...you need my advice!" Blaise answered and

laughed as she watched her mother and brother leave.

Blaise took Ephiny’s hand in her own and leaned down to kiss her..."what an incredible

night this turned out to be baby...did I tell you that I missed your lips on mine?" Blaise

asked with a sexy smile.

"They have missed yours as well." Ephiny answered as she wrapped her arm around

Blaise’s waist and leaned her head against her shoulder.

"Let’s go talk outside." Blaise suggested as she kissed the top of Ephiny’s head and

hugger her tighter.

They exited the club and sat by the fountain. Ephiny sat on the edge and Blaise knelt

down on one knee in front of her. Blaise took Ephiny’s hands in her own and placed a

soft kiss on them.

"I owe you an explanation for my idiotic behavior lately Eph...I almost made the

biggest mistake of my life by trying to push you out of it."

"Then why did you do it?"

"Because I thought your life would be less complicated and not as dangerous without me

in it...especially when I take my father’s place as God of War."

"Blaise...I know your destiny...it doesn’t bother me that you will be the God of War

some day and my life has alot of danger in it now...I want to be with you no matter what.

Even if it means leaving the amazons for you...I love you." Ephiny ran her hand through

Blaise’s dark wavy hair.

Blaise kissed her hand..."I don’t want you to have to give up the amazons for me."

"Maybe we can work out some kind of an arrangement then."

"What kind of a life will it be for our children?"

"Children?" Ephiny asked with a smile and glow in her eyes at Blaise’s interest in them

having children one day.

"Yes... I want us to have alot of them but I don’t want them to grow up as I did...lonely

for the love of my parents."

"Blaise...honey...they won’t be brought up as your father did with you...they’ll know

the love of both their parents I promise you." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"So, you don’t have a problem with what I will have to do as God of War?"

"Not one bit unless you turn out to be like your father who causes war just for pettiness

than I’ll have a problem with it...but I know you will not be like him."

"Ephiny...I love you...I fell in love with you from the moment I first saw your beautiful

face...I promise to love you for all of eternity."

Ephiny smiled as tears ran down her face..."I love you with all of my heart Blaise."

Blaise leaned in and kissed Ephiny. Blaise leaned back and pulled out a ring.

"My brother Lyceus gave me this as a baby and it’s to go to our first born as part of our

family tradition...I want you to wear it as a symbol of our impending joining until I can

get another ring for you." Blaise slid the ring on Ephiny’s finger and placed a kiss on it.

"It’s beautiful Blaise and our first born will be blessed to have the honor of wearing it."

Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Thank you...that means alot to me Eph...Let’s go home!" Blaise answered as Ephiny

hugged her.

Blaise stood up and carried Ephiny away as she kissed her..."Are you going to carry me

all the way back?" Ephiny asked with a laugh.

"No...just to Taz...I think you have gained some weight." Blaise laughed.

"Blaise!" Ephiny exclaimed as she bit her on the neck.

"Oh, yes punish me baby like the bad girl that I am!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

Blaise whistled for Taz who ran up and knelt down for Ephiny to mount him. Blaise

climbed up on the horse behind Ephiny and wrapped her strong arms around her taking

control of the reigns.

"Let’s go boy!" Blaise replied as she heeled Taz who whinnied in response to his command and galloped out of town.

After a short way out of town Blaise slowed Taz down to a walk.

"Ephiny...can you forgive me for believing the lies Solari told me?...I should have trusted you more."

Ephiny leaned forward and looked over her shoulder at Blaise..."only if you can forgive me for doing the same."

"Then all is forgiven." Blaise smiled..."Ephiny I want us to be open about our feelings from now on and that way we can keep things from getting out of control like they just did."

"I promise that I will be honest with you Blaise." Ephiny kissed Blaise and leaned back

against her chest.

Blaise moved Ephiny’s hair back off her face and neck. She placed kisses along the side

of her face working her way down to Ephiny’s neck.

Ephiny tilted her head to the side to give Blaise easier access..."oh, Blaise I have missed

that so much." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise moved her kisses to Ephiny’s neck and alternated between kisses and soft bites.

Blaise dropped the reigns and moved her hands onto Ephiny’s stomach. Ephiny arched

her back and slid her hand up through Blaise’s hair resting it behind her neck. Blaise

moved her hands up Ephiny’s stomach to her breast and gently squeezed them.

"Oh, baby." Ephiny moaned as she turned her head to kiss Blaise.

Blaise licked Ephiny’s top lip and parted them. Blaise moved her tongue into her mouth

sliding it along the roof and exited her mouth. Blaise slid her tonugealong Ephiny’s lips

again and entered her mouth for a deep passionate kiss.

Blaise continued the kiss as she moved her hands inside the material which held Ephiny’s

breast and caressed her bare breasts gently pinching her erect nipples.

"Blaise...I want you to take me now." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise moved her hand under Ephiny’s skirt and slid her hand under Ephiny’s underwear

to her sex. Ephiny reached down and moved Blaise’s hand out of the way. She slid her

finger inside of her wet, hot center and placed her wet finger in Blaise’s mouth. Blaise

circled her tongue around Ephiny’s finger to taste her and then sucked the wetness off of

her finger.

"mmmm...that tastes so good Ephiny."

"Touch me baby I can’t wait any longer." Ephiny whispered.

Blaise slid back off of the saddle sitting farther back on Taz to give Ephiny more room.

Blaise slid her hand under her garments and entered her finger in Ephiny’s wet opening.

"Aah...yes...that feels so good." Ephiny replied softly.

Blaise began to kiss Ephiny’s neck softly and slid her other hand to Ephiny’s sex.

Blaise moved Ephiny’s folds apart to expose her hard clit and began to rub her finger in

circles over it. Blaise moved her other finger in and out of Ephiny’s wet opening as

Ephiny moved her hips to Blaise’s movements.

"Oh, Blaise it feels so good." Ephiny moaned as she moved her hips faster as Blaise

picked up her pace with her fingers.

Blaise moved her kisses up her neck to Ephiny’s ear and nibbled on it..."let it go baby...

let me have it." Blaise whispered in a sexy voice into her ear.

Blaise moved her finger in and out of her opening faster as Ephiny picked up her pace

of moving her hips. Blaise circled her finger over her swollen nub faster as she felt

Ephiny begin to buck her hips as she released her orgasm and screamed out in pleasure.

Blaise slowed her movements down as Ephiny’s sex contracted and released on Blaise’s

finger in her opening. Blaise stopped her movements and left her fingers there for a

moment until the her sex stopped the throbbing. Blaise moved her hands back up Ephiny

to her breasts and gently caressed them as she kissed Ephiny passionately.

"Oh, Blaise you make me feel so incredible." Ephiny moaned as she leaned back against

Blaise’s chest.

"You where pretty incredible yourself baby." Blaise replied as she moved back on the

saddle to take the reigns.

Blaise snuggled her head against Ephiny’s as Ephiny put her hands on Blaise’s arms.

Blaise heeled Taz to pick up the pace towards the village.

"So, Blaise...how many children do you want to have?"

"Well...I was kind of hoping you would have them...I’m not the childbearing type."

Blaise answered with a chuckle.

"I assumed that I would have them baby...but how many do you want?"

"How about enough for an army?" Blaise answered with a laugh.

"We can have that many but you will have to rethink your childbearing views!" Ephiny

answered with a laugh.

"It doesn’t matter how many we have baby as long as we have at least one...how many

would you like?" Blaise asked as she kissed Ephiny on the cheek.

"Oh, I don’t know...3, 4 or 5...let’s see how the first one goes!" Ephiny laughed.

"Then that’s the plan...to get through the first one."

"Now...Blaise...how do you propose that we will accomplish the task of conceiving

children?"

"Honey...you seem to forget that I have connections with the gods." Blaise laughed.

Blaise and Ephiny returned to the village and stabled Taz for the evening. They walked

hand in hand towards their hut and noticed Xena and Gabrielle where in a discussion

with some of Gabrielle’s advisors.

"It’s about time you two got back...what took you so long?" Xena asked as the two

approached the group.

"Aah...we had to make up Xena." Blaise answered with a sly grin as she looked at

Ephiny.

Ephiny stood in front of Blaise who wrapped her arms around her shoulders and rested

her head against Ephiny.

"What’s going on?" Ephiny asked.

"We where just trying to decide the best time for your joining Ephiny...how does three

days sound?" Gabrielle asked

"It sounds great with me how about you Blaise?" Ephiny asked as she looked up at Blaise

for her answer.

"I’ll have to check my appointment book but I think I can make it." Blaise joked.

Ephiny elbowed Blaise in the stomach..."you better be there!"

Blaise laughed..."that sounds good...I wouldn’t miss it for the world baby." Blaise

answered and kissed Ephiny on the cheek..."Xena where’s mother?"

"She has retired for the evening...she said to apologize but she was exhausted from the

journey and all of the excitement."

"Okay...I’ll talk to her in the morning then."

"I’m exhausted...take me to bed Blaise." Ephiny replied as she placed a kiss on Blaise’s

arm.

"As you wish my love...goodnight everyone."

Blaise and Ephiny left the group and made their way into their hut.

"Blaise...I have something to give you."

"Of course you do honey...a big kiss." Blaise answered as she took Ephiny in her arms

and kissed her.

"Well...that’s one thing but I got something else for you." Ephiny answered as she

pulled out a cloth and unwrapped it. She pulled out a thick silver bracelet with links

that connected one another.

"It’s beautiful Ephiny but you didn’t need to get me anything."

"I wanted to." Ephiny answered as she put the bracelet on Blaise’s wrist..."this

represents how my life and my love intertwines with yours...I love you Blaise." Ephiny

kissed and hugged Blaise.

"I will treasure it always Ephiny...thank you." Blaise leaned down and kissed Ephiny

passionately.

Blaise and Ephiny began to undress each other as they gazed into one another eyes. Once

undressed Blaise moved towards the bed but Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise

pressing her naked body against Blaise’s back and began to alternate kisses with soft

bites along her muscular back.

Ephiny ran her hands slowly up and down Blaise’s chest working them down her stomach

to her dark curly hair. Ephiny moved in front of Blaise and knelt before her sex. Ephiny

parted Blaise’s folds with her tongue as Blaise spread her legs. Blaise moved her hand to

the back of Ephiny’s head.

"Ephiny that feels so good." Blaise moaned

Ephiny put her hands on Blaise’s hips and began to devour Blaise’s sex with her tongue.

Ephiny moved her tongue to Blaise’s wet opening sucking her juices and moved her

tongue back to her hard clitoris. Ephiny slid two fingers into Blaise’s opening sliding

them in and out.

Blaise moved her hips to meet Ephiny’s movements with her tongue and tilted her head

back.

"Oh baby!...you feel so good." Blaise moaned.

Ephiny picked up her pace with her tongue and fingers as Blaise moved her hips faster.

Blaise watched her lover devour her sex and thought of how wonderful Ephiny’s tongue

felt on her swollen nub.

Blaise couldn’t contain herself anymore and released her orgasm for Ephiny to enjoy.

Ephiny entered her tongue into Blaise’s opening and took Blaise’s offerings. Ephiny

placed soft kisses up through Blaise’s black curls, up her stomach, and up her chest.

Blaise took Ephiny into her arms as Ephiny started to nibble on Blaise’s neck.

"That was wonderful Ephiny...you make me feel so good." Blaise replied softly.

Blaise kissed Ephiny passionately tasting herself on Ephiny’s lips. Ephiny broke their

kiss..."I love you baby."

"Oooh, I love you too." Blaise replied as she smiled and squatted down to pick Ephiny

up in her arms.

Ephiny put her arms around Blaise and leaned down to kiss her. Blaise carried her over

to the bed and laid down on her back positioning Ephiny on top of her as they continued

their passionate kiss.

Blaise pushed Ephiny’s hair off her face and held it back using both hands. Blaise just

stared into Ephiny’s eyes with a big smile on her face.

"What?" Ephiny asked as she kissed Blaise on the chest without looking away.

"Does there have to be something up for me to stare at you?"

"Yes...when you give me that sexy smile of yours to go along with those bedroom eyes...

it makes me think you are up to something." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Nothing is up honey...I was just wondering how I got so lucky to have someone as

beautiful as yourself to have fallen in love with me."

"Maybe it was our destiny or one of your brother Cupid’s arrows."

"I believe it’s our destiny to be together...Cupid did have a hand in helping me see

things clearer with the whole situation with Solari." Blaise wrapped her arms around

Ephiny’s body as Ephiny swished her hair to the side off her face..."you feel so good

against me baby...I love to feel your heartbeat close to mine."

Ephiny ran her hands through Blaise’s wavy black hair and gazed into her blue eyes...

"I’m the lucky one Blaise...I love you." Ephiny placed a soft kiss on Blaise’s lips.

Blaise and Ephiny moved themselves onto their sides with Ephiny laying in front of

Blaise. Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny tightly and Ephiny snuggled her head

under Blaise’s chin. She put her hands in Blaise’s hands and placed a soft kiss on each

one.

"Goodnight Blaise."

"Night baby." Blaise answered softly as she placed a kiss on the top of Ephiny’s head

before they both fell asleep in each other’s arms.

Blaise woke before dawn and decided to watch the sunrise. She slid out of bed and

covered Ephiny’s naked body with a blanket. Blaise leaned down and put a soft kiss on

her lips.

Blaise dressed and went out to the clearing where she had enjoyed a previous sunrise

with Ephiny.

Blaise saw her mother had the same idea about enjoying the sunrise..."hello mother."

Blaise replied softly to not startle her.

"Blaise!" Cyrene exclaimed with excitement.

Blaise sat down next to Cyrene..."I see I got my love of watching the sunrise from you."

Blaise replied with a smile.

"I suppose so Blaise." Cyrene answered with a smile as she held Blaise’s hand..."Blaise

I want you to know I had no idea you where alive...there wasn’t one day that passed

that I didn’t think of you."

"I thought the same of you mother and please don’t feel bad about not knowing I was

alive...how could you have know?...I hate my father for what he has done to you."

"Blaise...hate is a strong word and he is your father."

"Yeah...a really great father who takes his daughter from her family and tells her they

where dead." Blaise answered with disgust at the thought of what Ares had done to her

family..."how can you not hate him mother?"

"Well...when I found out he fathered Xena I was very hurt but then I looked into Xena’s

face and I realized I could not hate the man that gave me such a precious gift of a

beautiful daughter...now, he has given me two beautiful children." Cryene answered

with a smile as she ran her hand down Blaise’s face..."don’t get me wrong Blaise...he is

not at the top of my favorite person list especially the way he took you from me."

"How can you contain your anger for that man?

"I look at you and Xena which takes away all of the anger I have for him." Cyrene

smiled as she looked into Blaise’s eyes.

"You are such a strong and beautiful woman mother...I love you." Blaise smiled and

hugged Cyrene.

"Oh, baby!." Cyrene began to cry..."I love you too."

"Look the sun is rising." Blaise replied with excitement.

"I used to pray to the gods everyday that I would one day share a sunrise with my baby

girl...it took a long time for my prayers to be answered but that day has finally come."

Cyrene answered as she held Blaise’s hand.

"Mother...what where you going to name me?"

"Your name was to be Jordan."

"That’s a beautiful name mother and I would have been very proud to have it." Blaise

answered with a smile.

"What do you say we head back for an early breakfast?" Cyrene asked.

"Are you buying?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"Sure...I hope you don’t eat as much as Gabrielle though!" Cyrene joked.

"No one can eat as much as she does!" Blaise laughed as she helped her mother up.

Blaise and Cyrene walked back to the food hut to enjoy breakfast with one another.

"Mother...you do know that one day I will take my father’s place as God of War right?"

"Oh, Blaise...do you have to?" Cyrene asked with worry.

"Yes...it’s my destiny mother...there has to be war unfortunately or there would be

total chaos throughout the land. Normally peaceful people such as yourself would

become very angry and violent people."

"I fear that you will become evil like your father."

"I promise that I will never become like my father...war will not come about because

of pettiness or because I’m bored with nothing to do like how my father rules now."

"I will hold you to that promise then and I will trust you will do what’s best." Cyrene

answered with a smile and a squeeze of Blaise’s hand for assurance.

"I’m going to go back and see if I can get some more rest before the days activities

begin...I had a wonderful time this morning mother."

"My life is complete now that I have you back Blaise." Cyrene answered as she kissed

her daughter’s cheek.

"See you later mother." Blaise replied with a smile as she left the table and headed back

to the hut.

Blaise entered the hut to find Ephiny sleeping peaceful just as she left her. Blaise

undressed and slid in behind Ephiny. Ephiny rolled over onto Blaise settling her body

on top of Blaise’s who was now laying supine.

Blaise could feel Ephiny’s breath on her chest as Ephiny continued to sleep. Blaise

softly moved Ephiny’s long curly hair off of her face and ran her hands through her hair.

Blaise laid enjoying the moment and thought about how she was the luckiest woman

in the world.

Gabrielle woke before Xena for a change..."oh, peasant girl." Gabrielle replied with a

seductive voice as she ran her finger down Xena’s chest softly circling her breasts and

she placed a soft kiss on her neck.

"Uhmmm...sorry...there is no peasant girl around here." Xena teased with a sleepy

response.

"Oh, really...well...the peasant girl stays until her goddess tells her to leave."

"Really...what is the goddess’ wish then?"

"To have breakfast with her little peasant girl, of course, providing she doesn’t cook the

meal but that she only serves it." Gabrielle laughed.

"Well, I must obey my goddess then...breakfast it is then."

Xena and Gabrielle got out of bed and dressed to head out for breakfast in the food hut.

"I think I can get used to having my food cooked for me for a change." Gabrielle replied

with a smile.

"I would cook it for you but you just don’t like my cooking."

"Yeah...blackened fish just isn’t so tasteful for breakfast." Gabrielle laughed.

They sat at the queen’s table to be served their breakfast.

"What are your plans for today Gabrielle?"

"I have a few treaties to review and I would like to go to town for some shopping...your

favorite pastime." Gabrielle smiled at Xena.

"Aah..I’ll pass on the shopping dear...I told Eponon I would go out on the hunt with

her group today."

"Now...that’s something I will gladly pass on!...I bet Ephiny will go shopping with me.

She loves a good bargain just as much as the next gal." Gabrielle answered with a laugh.

"Well...you two have fun bargain shopping then."

The two finished their breakfast and headed out of the food hut. Xena walked Gabrielle

to her office to review the treaties.

"I’m going to go get Argo and the rest of the hunting party all set for when we leave...

you have a good day honey." Xena kissed Gabrielle.

"You too Xena."

Gabrielle entered her office as Xena headed off towards the stables.

"Good morning." Gabrielle replied to the guards posted at her office.

"Good morning my queen." they both replied with a bow.

Gabrielle sat down to review the treaties before her..."oh, guards."

"Yes...my queen?"

"Could one of you seek out Ephiny and ask her to join me please?"

"As you wish my queen." one of the guards replied as she walked off to find Ephiny.

Ephiny woke and placed soft kisses on Blaise’s chest as she ran her hand down her

lover’s body. She picked her head up and kissed Blaise’s lips.

"Good morning my love."

"Have I ever told you that you have the sexiest voice?" Blaise answered as she opened

her eyes to look at her intended.

Ephiny crossed her arms over Blaise’s chest and rested her chin on her arms..."no...you

haven’t my darling." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"You also have an incredible smile, very sexy lips that I just love to kiss, eyes that

make my heart melt when I look into them, you have a very sexy..."

Blaise was interrupted by a knock at the door..."Excuse me Ephiny?" the guard replied.

"What is it?" Ephiny answered agitated by the interruption.

"The queen needs to see you regarding the treaties."

"Okay...I will be there shortly...well...duty calls my love...we will have to continue

this conversation later." Ephiny replied with a smile..."are you sure your destiny is to

become the God of War?"

"Positive...why?"

"Well...I think your father should have made you the god of romance or flattery because

you are incredible with that!" Ephiny slid up Blaise and kissed her passionately.

"Uhmmm...I love those lips...maybe I can hold duel jobs as God of War and God of

Romance." Blaise smiled as she kissed Ephiny again.

"Oh, I don’t want to get up." Ephiny whined...content where she was.

"It’s a tough job but someone’s got to do it."

"Okay...I’m going." Ephiny replied as she slid out of bed and leaned down for another

kiss.

Blaise rolled onto her side and watched Ephiny get dressed..."uhmmm...too sexy."

Blaise replied with a smile as she got out of bed and put her boxer shorts on.

"You’re not so bad yourself baby." Ephiny answered as she put her boots on.

Ephiny stood up..."Well...I’m ready to go kick some treaty butt!" she replied with

sarcasm.

Blaise took Ephiny into her arms and kissed her..."you go baby." Blaise smiled as she

watched Ephiny leave their hut.

Ephiny entered the royal office..."Good morning Gabrielle."

"Hi Ephiny."

"So, what’s up with the treaties?"

"Nothing...they’re fine."

"Then why did I need to get out of my cozy little bed with my very sexy lover to help

you with them?"

"I just wanted to know if you wanted to go shopping with me...I guess the guard took it

upon herself to summon you regarding the treaties...I’m sorry...I should have been more

specific."

"Rookie guards!" Ephiny replied with a laugh..."sure I’ll go shopping with you

considering I’m already up."

"Great let’s go then!" Gabrielle exclaimed with excitement.

Ephiny noticed Blaise had already dressed and was walking out of the stables with Taz.

Blaise stopped to talk with one of the amazons. Ephiny stopped in her tracks to watch

her lover and Gabrielle bumped into her not knowing Ephiny was stopping so quickly

"What’s wrong?"

"Nothing...I just love to watch Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile.

Gabrielle looked over at Blaise..."she is a very sexy woman and you are very lucky...

actually we are both very lucky...have you noticed that Blaise is like her father?"

"How do you mean?"

"They’re both very good looking, cocky, sexual, and Blaise stands with her hand on her

sword just as Ares does."

"I suppose you’re right Gabrielle...she makes my heart skip a beat everytime I see her."

Ephiny answered with a smile never taking her eyes off of Blaise.

"I’m very happy for the two of you Ephiny...I’m glad you are happy."

"Thanks Gabrielle...I love Blaise with all of my heart."

Blaise finished her conversation and walked away with Taz towards Ephiny and

Gabrielle. Blaise looked up to see the two of them staring at her .She turned around to see

who they where looking at realizing they where looking at her.She got an embarrassed smile

on her face.

"What are you ladies doing?" Blaise asked with a smile as she approached.

"Just checking you out baby!" Ephiny replied.

"Do you like what you see?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile.

"No...I love what I see." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Uh...Gabrielle...what did I tell you about checking me out in front of Ephiny?" Blaise

teased.

"Well...ya know it just can’t be helped...you look so much like a certain person that I

love."

"Who Ares?...when did you fall for my dad?" Blaise laughed.

"You are incorrigible Blaise." Gabrielle replied with a pinch on Blaise’s arm.

"Hey!...ouch...don’t bruise the merchandise chickie...well, were are you ladies off too?"

"We’re going to town for some shopping...would you like to join us?" Gabrielle asked.

"I’m not the shopping type but I do need to pick up something special for my bride to be

and I would be so honored to accompany two beautiful woman on their journey."

"Let’s go." Ephiny answered with a smile as she slid her hand into Blaise’s as they

walked off towards town with the royal guards following.

They made their way out of the village..."Gabrielle...why did you choose rookie guards

for your protection?" Ephiny asked.

"Ephiny...they have to start somewhere."

"Well...they need to cover the front and the rear...I’ll be right back." Ephiny replied

with agitation at the guards protection.

Ephiny walked over to the guards to give them instructions as to how they are to protect

their queen.

Blaise looked at Gabrielle and smiled..."she can’t keep her hands off of me." Blaise

teased with cockiness.

"Oh, Blaise!...yes she can." Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"I’ll bet you five dinars that she crawls up on me and kisses me." Blaise offered with

a sly grin.

"I’ll take that bet and win!"

"We’ll see."

"Yes...we will." Gabrielle answered as Ephiny returned to the group walking farther up

ahead from them.

"Let’s go I straightened them out."

Gabrielle looked at Blaise and smiled that Ephiny didn’t walk up to hold hands with

Blaise.

Blaise sneered at Gabrielle..."you get my five dinars ready." Blaise whispered to

Gabrielle.

Blaise dropped Taz’s reigns who continued to follow the group as Blaise walked ahead to

join Ephiny.

"Well...hello there...are you going my way?"

"Well...I don’t know if I can trust you...after all my mother always told me not to talk

to strangers." Ephiny answered jokingly.

"Oh, you can trust me little girl...would you like a piece of candy?" Blaise asked with

a sly grin.

"Sure...what do you have?"

"Well...let’s see." Blaise answered as she fished through her pockets..."aah...here."

Blaise went to hand the piece of candy to her but dropped it..."oh, silly me!"

"It’s okay I’ll get it."

When Ephiny bent over to pick up the candy she pinched Ephiny in the butt and turned

smiling at Gabrielle.

"Blaise!..what are you." Ephiny snapped as she pushed Blaise knocking her to the

ground.

"Aah...aah." Blaise replied in pain as she laid on her side on the ground.

Ephiny went up to Blaise and knelt down beside her..."are you okay?"

Gabrielle came up to the pair..."what happened?"

"I dislocated my shoulder!" Blaise cried out in obvious pain.

"Blaise I’m so sorry." Ephiny replied with concern..."what can I do to help?"

"You have to put it back in place." Blaise answered as she rolled onto her back holding

her shoulder.

"How do you want me to do it?...push or pull?"

"Straddle me for leverage...then take my arm and press it down towards the ground."

Ephiny straddled Blaise..."okay are you ready?"

"No...can I have a kiss first to help with the pain."

Ephiny leaned down and kissed Blaise who wrapped her other arm around Ephiny for a

passionate kiss.

"Are you ready now?" Ephiny asked

"No...I need another kiss." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny deeply and wrapped

both arms around her.

Ephiny broke their kiss and sat up..."wait a minute!...your shoulder is fine!"

Blaise laughed..."yep...I just wanted you to lay on me and kiss me." Blaise answered

with a laugh.

"Oh, Blaise I outta!" Ephiny replied with anger at Blaise’s trick as she got up and

tweaked Blaise’s breast before walking off up ahead.

"Ouch!" Blaise exclaimed as she rubbed her breast to dull the pain as she got up.

"You tricked her...I’m not paying up!" Gabrielle replied

"You didn’t set any rules...so, that’s five dinars you owe me!" Blaise answered with a

laugh.

"Yeah...yeah...I’ll pay you later...I’m good for it." Gabrielle laughed.

Blaise ran up behind Ephiny and wrapped her arms around her. Blaise kissed her on the

cheek as Ephiny pushed her away.

"Aah...you’re not still mad are you?" Blaise asked as she wrapped her arms around

Ephiny again..."can I help it if I want to hold and kiss you all the time...I know I’m a

wicked person can you ever forgive me?...you can punish me with 10 lashes to my bare

bottom."

Ephiny began to laugh..."that is not punishment for you Blaise...you would enjoy it too

much!"

"Very funny...will you forgive me?"

"Kiss me and I will think about it." Ephiny demanded as Blaise kissed her passionately.

"okay...you’re forgiven." Ephiny answered as they held hands.

"Come on slow poke you’re holding us up." Blaise shouted to Gabrielle.

"Yeah...yeah."

They all made their way into town and noticed the town square was full of peddlers.

"Today is a good day for shopping." Gabrielle replied as she looked around the square

with a gleam in her eye.

"You ladies have fun shopping...I’ll meet you in a candle mark in the pub where I will

wait for you." Blaise informed the two.

"Bye." Ephiny answered with a kiss as her and Gabrielle headed off towards the

peddlers.

Blaise went off to one of the peddlers selling jewelry and found a ring for Ephiny. Blaise

went to the tavern to wait for the girls and to enjoy a good port. Blaise sat admiring the

ring she had for Ephiny.

The guards rushed in to the tavern out of breath..."Blaise!...they have our queen and

Ephiny!"

Blaise turned around to face them..."who?" Blaise asked with confusion.

"A group of men just grabbed them."

"Where in tartarus were you?"

"Aah...we where distracted." they replied lowering their heads in shame.

"You idiots!...you where to protect them!"

Blaise and the group ran out of the tavern. Blaise whistled for Taz who ran up and Blaise

mounted him.

"Which way did they go?"

"Out of town that way." they pointed off to the right.

"Go back to the village and await your punishment!" Blaise shouted as she heeled Taz

and made her way out of town to find the pair.

Blaise picked up the group not far from town.

"Well...boys what do we have here?" Blaise asked as she dismounted Taz.

"Nothing of concern to you." the leader shouted.

Blaise looked over the situation where noting there where ten men in the group with two

holding Gabrielle and Ephiny at knifepoint by the throats.

"Well...you’re wrong there my friend...seems you are holding my family which I don’t

care much for."

Blaise glanced around again sizing the group up. Two to her left, one holding Gabrielle,

one holding Ephiny, two behind Taz and two to her right.

Blaise made eye contact with Gabrielle who knew what Blaise was about to do.

"Well then...you’ll pay a high price for them then won’t you?"

"No...you will...with your life!...now Gabrielle!" Blaise shouted as she grabbed the two

to her left and cracked their heads together knocking them out with the force of the blow.

Gabrielle stomped on her assailants foot then delivered a blow to the face with her elbow

knocking him to the ground along with her staff which he was holding. Ephiny made the

same move on the leader to break free.

Taz took out the two behind her with a swift kick of her hind quarters sending them

flying in a heap against a tree.

Gabrielle and Ephiny continued to fight their assailants as Blaise moved to the other

two men knocking one to the ground with a backhand to the face. Blaise drew her sword

from the scarab to face the other man. The two continued to match each others swing of

their swords.

Blaise glanced towards Gabrielle and Ephiny and noticed Ephiny was having difficulty

with her assailant. Another man was approaching the back of Ephiny. Blaise’s opponent

caught Blaise’s arm with the sword cutting her shoulder.

"Aah." Blaise exclaimed in pain as she kicked the man in the stomach dropping him to

his knees. Blaise brought the handle of her sword down on his head knocking him out.

Blaise ran towards Ephiny to help with the man at the rear as Gabrielle finally dispatched

her assailant and move towards Ephiny to help.

Blaise approached the man with her sword drawn to plunge into him but Gabrielle

knocked her sword out of her hand..."no...no killing!"

Ephiny turned to see what happened after she knocked her assailant out as Gabrielle

swung her staff at the man to Ephiny’s rear. The man ducked the blow and hit Ephiny in

the head knocking her to the ground.

Blaise picked up her sword and plunged her sword into his heart killing him.

Blaise pulled her sword out out of man and placed it back in her scarab.She turned

towards Gabrielle with rage in her eyes as Gabrielle attended to Ephiny.

Blaise rushed to Ephiny’s side and took her in her arms..."Eph!...is she alive?" Blaise

shouted.

"Barely!" Gabrielle answered softly.

Blaise picked her up and carried her towards Taz..."down!" Blaise shouted as Taz knelt

down allowing her to mount him with Ephiny in her arms. Once place mounted Taz he

stood back up.

"Blaise you didn’t need to kill that man!"

"I don’t have time for this Gabrielle!...either get on or walk back!" Blaise shouted with

anger.

Gabrielle mounted Taz behind Blaise as she heeled him and pulled Ephiny in close to

her.

They arrived to find a group waiting for them including Xena which where informed of

what happened by the royal guards.

Gabrielle dismounted and hugged Xena..."are you okay?"

"Yes...but Ephiny is hurt very bad." Gabrielle answered through tears.

"Down!" Blaise ordered at Taz and the horse knelt allowing Blaise to dismount him with

ease.

Blaise rushed Ephiny into their hut and placed Ephiny down gently on the bed. Blaise

knelt beside her and took Ephiny’s hand in her own. Blaise raised Ephiny’s hand to her

lips and kissed it as she brushed her hair off her face.

"I’m here baby...come back to me."

Xena checked Ephiny to assess her condition. Xena moved behind Blaise and put her

hand on her shoulder for comfort.

"We just have to wait and see Blaise...there is nothing I can do for her right now...let

me fix your shoulder."

"No!...not until Ephiny is well again!" Blaise shouted with anger.

"Blaise your arm is bleeding profusely."

"How is she?" Gabrielle asked as she entered the hut.

Blaise stood up and turned to Gabrielle with rage in her eyes.

"Nearly dead because of you!" Blaise shouted as she moved towards Gabrielle and Xena

stepped between the two of them.

"Now Blaise...calm down...I’m sure Gabrielle is not responsible."

"You weren’t there Xena!...she knocked my sword out of my hand when I tried to

protect Ephiny!" Blaise shouted.

"You where going to kill him Blaise!" Gabrielle shouted.

Blaise moved towards Gabrielle as Xena held her back..."that’s right...I wasn’t going

to trade Ephiny’s life for that scumbags life Gabrielle...you need to learn that!"

"Gabrielle you did what?" Xena snapped as she glanced of her shoulder at her in

disbelief.

"I couldn’t stand to see another person get killed." Gabrielle answered through tears.

"At the cost of Ephiny’s life Gabrielle?!...Xena it scares me to think she is your backup.

I can’t believe she would choose another’s life over yours or a friend just for the sake

of saving a criminal from death...what kind of amazon are you to allow that to happen

to one of your sisters!" Blaise shouted.

"Blaise...Gabrielle has her own code she follows."

"Tell her to keep her code to herself and to never interfere with my code!...get your

wife out of my site!"

"Just calm down Blaise!" Xena answered as she turned and let Gabrielle out of the hut.

Blaise went back to Ephiny and laid on the bed next to her. Blaise held Ephiny’s hand

and placed soft kisses on her forehead..."I’m here baby...right next to you my love where I

belong." Blaise replied softly as she gently kissed Ephiny’s lips.

Xena and Gabrielle stood outside the hut..."Gabrielle what happened? Is it true what

Blaise said?"

Gabrielle hung her head down and began to cry..."yes...Xena it’s true."

"Why would you jeopardize Ephiny’s life?" Xena asked as she moved to face Gabrielle.

"I just couldn’t stand by and watch someone die no matter who the person was...I didn’t

think Ephiny wold be hurt and now I may have killed one of my sister’s...I’m sure

Blaise hates me now." Gabrielle answered through tears.

Xena hugged Gabrielle..."I know you have a problem with the killing thing Gabrielle

but you are gonna have to realize that there may be no other option...I’m sure once

Blaise calms down she will see things more clearly...go get something to eat and send

mother in while I check on Ephiny."

"Okay...I hope you’re right." Gabrielle answered as she went to get Cyrene.

Xena went back in and checked on Ephiny and then checked Blaise’s wound. Xena

cleaned and sutured Blaise’s wound with Blaise not flinching from the pain in response

to the medical attention Xena was administering.

Cyrene came into the hut with some food and water..."Xena...how are they?"

Xena moved over to her mother..."Ephiny is not good mother and Blaise is in shock."

"Oh, by the gods Xena!" Cyrene answered as tears filled her eyes.

Xena placed her hand on Blaise’s shoulder to get her attention. Blaise sat up in the bed

and looked at Xena with a far away look..."Blaise honey...you need to eat something."

"No...Xena I’m fine...I’ll eat when Ephiny eats."

"Then how about some water?" Xena held up the cup of water.

"No...I’ll wait for Ephiny."

"Blaise...please...drink some water for me." Xena hoped Blaise would agree to a drink..

"how about for Ephiny then?" she handed the water to Blaise who excepted the drink...

"well...that’s a start." Xena replied.

Blaise finished the water and faced Ephiny again running her fingers through her blond

curly hair..."Ephiny...did I tell you about the most beautiful woman I have ever met?...

the moment I saw her I saw love...she has beautiful blond curly hair, exquisite green

eyes, a sexy body, a wonderful personality, a heart that is filled with love...she’s an

amazon queen and she just so happens to be the love of my life...you." Blaise whispered

as she raised her hand to her lips and kissed it softly.

Xena turned to face her mother who was crying. Xena put her head down and cried.

Cyrene hugged her to comfort her.

"This is very difficult mother...to sit around and not be able to do a damned thing."

Xena whispered with anger as she walked out of the hut.

Gabrielle was pacing back and forth in front of the hut..."Xena how is she?"

"No change Gabrielle."

Gabrielle noticed how upset Xena was and hugged her..."how is Blaise?"

"She’s in shock Gabrielle...she lays by Ephiny’s side and tells her stories of when they

met and of her childhood...it’s very difficult to watch."

"Oh, by the gods...what was I thinking?" Gabrielle answered with anger at herself as

she pulled away from Xena.

"You thought you where doing the right thing...why is Argo out here?"

"Taz refuses to leave so, I thought I would bring Argo out in hopes he would leave with

her.

"He sure is loyal to Blaise."

Argo looked at Taz..."hey...you big stallion...my stall or yours?"

"Look Argo...I’m not in the mood for this right now and besides I told you your master

hasn’t given me the okay with you yet." Taz informed Argo in horse talk which has been

translated for the rest of us into english.

Argo nudged Taz’s neck with her nose..."oh, stop playing hard to get Taz."

"Ease off palamino babe." Taz answered as he stepped away from Argo..."are you

always this easy?"

"Only around black stallions who have an incredibly sexy white stripe of fur down

their noses." Argo answered as she moved closer to Taz.

"Maybe some other time Argo...I’m worried about my master’s intended."

"You don’t even know her that well." Argo answered with a swish of her tail.

"It doesn’t matter how well I know her...she love’s my master so, I am to obey and care

for her the same as my master...you mean to tell me you don’t do the same for your

masters wife?"

"Well...she can be quite annoying at times...I really love to mess around with her and

give her a hard time when she rides me...but I will protect her just the same as I do my

master."

"Thanks for being here with me Argo...I feel a little better." Taz replied with a nudge

to Argo’s neck.

Cyrene sat next to the bed and brushed Blaise’s hair off her face..." Blaise honey...you

need to eat something."

"I can’t mother."

"You need to keep your strength up for Ephiny."

Blaise looked back at Ephiny and pulled out the ring she had purchased for her..."I have

something for you my love...it’s your ring for our joining...it is silver with a heart in

the middle of it because you own my heart baby." Blaise told Ephiny as she slid the

ring on her finger and kissed it.

Ephiny gasped for air as her chest jerked up and her head tilted back.

"Ephiny!" Blaise replied with worry as she sat up next to her.

"Xena!" Cyrene shouted as Xena rushed into the hut.

Ephiny expelled her air as her head tilted to the side. Blaise picked Ephiny up in her

arms..."Ephiny...baby..come on wake up."

Xena rushed to Ephiny’s side as Cyrene stepped back into Tarus’ arms who had entered

the hut.

Blaise blew air into Ephiny’s mouth as Xena checked for a pulse..."come on baby

breath...I won’t allow you to leave me!" Blaise shouted through her tears.

"Blaise...Blaise." Xena replied as she grabbed Blaise’s arm..."she’s gone Blaise." Xena

whispered as tears filled her eyes as they met Blaise’s.

"Ephiny!" Blaise shouted..."No!...Ephiny!"

Blaise kissed Ephiny’s lips softly..."I’m not going to let you leave me Eph." Blaise took Ephiny’s hand in hers and raised it to her lips for a soft kiss..."I will give up forever for you to be alive again even though we would not be together... I will ask Aphrodite to arrange it and she will do as I ask."

"Blaise." Xena replied softly..."you know Ephiny wouldn’t want that."

"She wouldn’t remember me Xena." Blaise answered as she put Ephiny’s hand on her cheek..."but she would be alive."

"Blaise...come on." Xena replied with sadness.

"Xena’s right Blaise." Cyrene answered through tears as she put her hands on Blaise’s shoulders for comfort.

Blaise looked into Xena’s eyes across from her as tears ran down her face..."wouldn’t you do the same for Gabrielle?...you wouldn’t go to tartarus and back for Gabrielle?...yes...I’m sure you would Xena."

Xena looked down..."yes, I would Blaise." Xena answered as she looked back up at Blaise.

"Then why would you question my decision to do the same?...I love Ephiny...she’s my life just as Gabrielle is yours."

"I’m sorry Blaise...you’re right...I shouldn’t have questioned your motives." Xena answered with sorrow in her eyes.

Blaise kissed Ephiny’s hand and ran her fingers through her hair as the tears fell from her face harder..."wait...I need ambrosia." Blaise replied as she stood up and placed Ephiny’s hand gently by her side..."better yet I’ll just kill Ares and become God of War.

Then I can bring Ephiny back to life." Blaise moved away from the bed and headed towards the door.

Cyrene grabbed Blaise’s arm... "Blaise please...don’t do that...he may hurt you instead."

"Oh, no mother...he’s going down." Blaise replied in anger as she walked away and was stopped by Xena.

"I can’t let you do that Blaise."

"Why do you all of a sudden care about that man Xena?...guess what...you can’t stop me!" Blaise shouted in anger as Xena grabbed Blaise to keep her from leaving.

Blaise reached up through Xena’s arms to break the grip and grabbed her sister lifting her off the ground.

"Blaise...please!" Cyrene cried.

Blaise threw Xena across the hut thrusting her against a post knocking her unconscious. The guards entered the hut to find out what the commotion was all about.

"Ephiny is dead...you are both to guard her with your lives and no one is to touch her...not even if your queen orders it or you will die at my hands...go that?" Blaise shouted with anger as she pointed at the pair.

"Blaise...please...don’t do this!" Cyrene shouted as she ran to Xena’s side.

Blaise left the hut and ran up to Taz who waited nearby.

"Blaise...what’s going on?" Gabrielle shouted as she ran up to the hut.

"Ephiny’s dead and you killed her!" Blaise shouted as she grabbed the saddlehorn and swung herself up on the saddle... "stay away from her Gabrielle you’ve done enough!" Blaise shouted as she turned Taz away from the hut and heeled him to a gallop out of the village.

Gabrielle ran into the hut and saw Ephiny laying on the bed lifeless with the guards posted by her.

"Gabrielle!...help me!" Cyrene shouted as she tried to lift Xena who was groggy from the head injury.

"By the gods Xena...what happened?" Gabrielle exclaimed as she ran over to help Xena up.

"Xena tried to stop Blaise." Cyrene answered

"But little sister is very strong." Xena interrupted her mother as they helped her to a standing position.

"Are you okay?" Gabrielle asked.

"I’ll be fine...I have to stop Blaise though...if I can."

"Why?...where is she going?"

"To kill Ares!" Xena replied sternly as she left the hut and whistled for Argo. Xena rubbed the bump on her head as she waited for Argo to approach.

"Xena wait!" Gabrielle shouted as she exited the hut.

Xena mounted Argo... "leave Ephiny as she is Gabrielle until we return okay?"

"Do you know where to find Blaise?"

"At the halls of war!" Xena shouted as she rode out of the village.

Blaise entered the halls of war and searched the alter where she remembered her father had hidden the ambrosia.

Ares stepped out with the ambrosia in his hand... "is this what you’re looking for Blaise?" he asked sarcastically.

"Give it up father!" Blaise shouted.

"Oh, no, no little girl...not without something in exchange."

"Of course, there is always a catch with you isn’t there?" Blaise answered in disgust.

"Here’s the deal...I give you the ambrosia for your weak spot Ephiny and you assume more duties...got it!"

"Here’s a deal for you...how about I kick your ass, dethrone you, make you Zeus’ slave boy, bring Ephiny back to life and make Joxer God of War?" Blaise answered sarcastically with rage in her eyes.

"Feisty aren’t we?" Ares answered with cockiness... "I don’t like that deal Blaise."

"Take it or leave it." Blaise shouted as she jumped into the air and kicked Ares in the chest sending him backwards on his back side.

Blaise ran over to jump on Ares who kicked her in the face causing her to fall to the ground. Ares walked over and kicked Blaise in the side repeatedly as Blaise moaned in pain with each kick. Blaise tried to sit up and Ares punched her in the face knocking her back down semi-unconscious.

"Hey Blaise!...looks like you’re getting the butt whipping." Ares replied as he laughed.

Blaise laid on her side trying to regain full consciousness and looked at her arm which had the bracelet that Ephiny had given her... "Eph..i..ny." Blaise whispered.

Ares leaned down... "is daddy kicking your butt too much?" Ares asked sarcastically laughing.

Blaise swung her legs around pinning his head between them and flipped him to the ground. She stood up and inflicted the same torture he had given to her. Ares screamed like a baby with each kick Blaise delivered. Blaise leaned down and grabbed him by the hair and lifted him to all fours. She kicked him in the face flipping him in the air landing flat on his back.

She walked over to her father and pressed her foot against his throat to pull his sword out.

"Who’s crying like a baby now?" Blaise asked sarcastically... "I think I’ll take that daddy." Blaise replied as she pulled the ambrosia out of his vest and put it in her own...

"how does it fell to lose your powers?" Blaise asked as she looked over her father’s sword.

Ares rolled to his side and then onto all fours in an attempt to stand up... "Blaise...please...I."

"Shut up! I don’t want to hear you whine!" Blaise shouted with anger.

"What do you intend to do then?" Ares asked.

Blaise put the sword to Ares’ throat... "maybe kill you daddy!" Blaise replied sarcastically with a crazed look in her eyes and smiled... "are you scared?"

Blaise was too consumed in her hatred for her father to notice Xena approach her. Xena slammed her sword on Blaise’s moving it away from Ares.

"Don’t do it Blaise." Xena replied sternly.

"Oh, Xena!...I was just having some fun with daddy!" Blaise answered with a laugh... "he can have his godhood back...I got what I came for."

"I knew I chose your destiny wisely Blaise." a voice came from behind them.

Blaise and Xena both turned and replied at the same time... "grandfather?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"Zeus!" Xena exclaimed with surprise.

"Great just what I need...daddy." Ares replied sarcastically as he rolled his eyes.

Blaise moved towards her grandfather and knelt before him... "it is good to see you grandfather."

"Stand before me Blaise...how many times to I have to tell you that you don’t have to kneel before me?" Zeus answered with a slight smile.

Blaise did as her grandfather commanded and stood before him.

"I made a wise decision choosing your destiny to be the next God of War Blaise."

"You mean...you chose my destiny to be the God of War?" Blaise asked surprised... "but why?...If I may ask."

"You have always been my favorite grandchild Blaise." Zeus answered as he put his hand on Blaise’s shoulder... "and I knew that you would handle the godhood I chose for you better than your sniveling, feable idiot of a father!" Zeus explained with disgust at Ares.

"Thanks daddy...I love you too." Ares replied sarcastically.

"Are you sure you don’t want to take over for him now?"

"No...I’m not ready grandfather." Blaise answered as she lowered her head afraid he would be disappointed in her.

"I didn’t think you where either but you will need to take on more duties now that you made that deal with your father...understood?"

"Yes...sir." Blaise answered as she handed her father’s sword to Zeus.

Zeus leaned in to whisper into Blaise’s ear... "next time come to me when you need something...you know I could never say no to you."

Blaise smiled as she heard what her grandfather offered... "I will...I promise."

Zeus stood upright... "Blaise I will see to it that your father doesn’t overstep his boundaries and that you get the ambrosia back to Ephiny."

"Thank you grandfather." Blaise answered with a smile.

"Ares I was wrong about you...you did do two things right in your life."

"What’s that?" Ares asked with a snarl.

"You had two wonderful daughters." Zeus answered with a slight smile and a wink to Xena.

"Well...let’s go whimp and get your wounds taken care of so we all don’t have to hear you cry." Zeus answered.

"Yeah...yeah." Ares replied with disgust.

Blaise and Xena ran out of the halls of war and mounted the horses to head back.

"Xena..I’m sorry I hurt you."

"From the looks of yourself it looks like you got a little payback!" Xena answered with a smile.

Blaise reached up and touched her lip to find it was bleeding... "I guess I did" Blaise answered with a smile... "I think I broke a rib if it makes you feel any better?"

"Blaise...don’t worry about it...I would have done the same thing."

Blaise and Xena heeled the horses to move faster down the trail towards the village.

Once they arrived in the village they dismounted the horses and Blaise ran to Ephiny’s side. She took a piece of ambrosia out and parted Ephiny’s lips placing it into her mouth.

"Blaise are you okay?" Cyrene asked as she put her hand on Blaise’s shoulder.

"We’ll see in a minute mother." Blaise answered as she held Ephiny’s hand... "Ephiny." Blaise replied softly.

Ephiny opened her eyes and smiled... "Blaise." she answered in a whisper as she squeezed her hand.

Blaise leaned down and kissed her... "welcome back baby." Blaise replied with a smile as she looked into her eyes.

"Thanks for not giving up on me." Ephiny answered.

"Never." Blaise whispered as she kissed Ephiny.

Ephiny put her hand to Blaise’s face... "what happened baby?" Ephiny asked with concern.

"A little family squabbles with father."

"Did you lose?"

Blaise laughed... "you don’t have too much confidence in me baby...if I would have lost we wouldn’t be talking now...I almost gave up but I couldn’t go through with it when I thought of you."

"I love you Blaise." Ephiny replied as she kissed and hugged Blaise.

"I love you too." Blaise answered never moving her lips from Ephiny’s.

"Aah...Ephiny...can I talk to you for a moment?" Gabrielle asked nervously as she approached.

Ephiny stopped hugging Blaise... "what is it Gabrielle?

"I’ll leave you two to talk." Blaise offered.

"No...Blaise...please stay." Gabrielle asked.

Xena moved in behind Gabrielle and put her hand on her shoulder for support.

"It’s my fault that this happened to you and I’m sorry...I hope one day you both can forgive me." Gabrielle replied with tears in her eyes.

"Listen...Gabrielle...I was really harsh on you and I shouldn’t have been." Blaise answered with regret.

"No... Blaise you had every right to be mad at me and I’m sorry."

Ephiny held Blaise’s hand and then grabbed Gabrielle’s... "we both forgive you Gabrielle."

"If there’s anything I can do for you to make up for it let me know."

"Well...I could sure use a backrub." Blaise answered with a smile and a laugh.

"Blaise!" Ephiny exclaimed as she elbowed her in the side.

Blaise doubled over in pain... "aah!"

"Blaise what happened?" Ephiny asked with concern.

"I think I broke my rib."

"Let me take a look." Xena answered.

"No...Xena...I’ll be glad to take care of her for a change...could we be alone though?"

"Sure." Xena answered as everyone left the hut.

As they exited the hut they saw the amazons waiting for word about Ephiny’s condition.

"Ephiny is going to be fine!" Xena exclaimed with a smile as she put her arm around Gabrielle.

Xena’s response to Ephiny’s well being brought cheers from the crowd of amazons. Taz whinnied at the good news that his masters intended was going to be fine.

"Taz I’m so happy for you!" Argo replied as she nudged Taz... "now, answer my question you big stud...my stall or yours?"

"I’m not sure Argo...your master hasn’t given the okay yet."

"Don’t worry about my master I will handle her...besides I’m tired of everyone else having a good time but me." Argo answered as she placed a bite on Taz’s neck.

"Easy big girl...I say forget the stalls then...I know a really nice meadow." Taz answered as he trotted off followed by Argo.

The two horses made their way to the meadow and Taz used her teeth to help loosen the straps on Argo’s saddle. Once the straps where loose he nudged the saddle off Argo’s back to the ground.

"Now...here your master thought we didn’t know how to get our saddle’s off." Argo replied.

"We don’t need to tell them everything Argo or we would be doing a lot more work than we already do now."

Argo returned the favor to Taz taking his saddle off and they obliged one another with the removal of their bridle’s.

The two horses galloped through the meadow with their mane’s blowing wildly in the wind as they playfully enjoyed each other’s company.

Blaise stood up and walked around to ease the pain... "come here baby...let me see." Ephiny replied as she sat on the edge of the bed.

Blaise moved over in front of her... "be gentle." Blaise teased.

"Aren’t I always?" Ephiny answered with a smile as she took Blaise’s shirt off.

"Uhmmm...Ephiny." Blaise replied teasingly.

"Oh, baby...you have a really bad bruise here...I think you’re right that it’s broken...let me make it feel better." Ephiny answered softly as she gently kissed the wounded area.

"It’s so much better now...I thought you would never kiss me again." Blaise replied as she knelt in front of Ephiny... "I thought I would never hold you again and look into your beautiful hazel eyes again."

"Thank you for everything you went through for me and I owe you my life...I love you Blaise." Ephiny hugged Blaise..."I love my ring Blaise." Ephiny whispered... "it’s beautiful."

"I love you with all of my heart Ephiny." Blaise kissed Ephiny as she laid back on the bed and Blaise laid on top of her continuing their passionate kiss.

Blaise and Ephiny had fallen asleep in one another’s arms after making mad passionate love.

Blaise was startled awake by a bad dream and raised up on her side to check on Ephiny. Blaise looked at Ephiny to find her dream wasn’t true and that Ephiny was alive.

Blaise watched Ephiny sleep as Ephiny laid with her back snuggled up tightly to Blaise’s stomach. Blaise thought about how much she loved Ephiny and brushed Ephiny’s hair off of her face. Blaise gentley placed soft kisses on Ephiny’s shoulder.

Ephiny moved in response to Blaise’s touch and a smile appeared on her face. Blaise softly and gently moved her hand down Ephiny’s side to her leg. Blaise moved her hand back up resting it on Ephiny’s stomach.

"Don’t you ever get enough?" Ephiny asked as she opened her eyes.

"Never." Blaise whispered as she leaned down and kissed Ephiny on the cheek.

"Why are you awake baby?"

"I had a bad dream that you where still dead and it woke me up...so, I decided to watch you sleep...what where you dreaming about?"

"Why?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"Because you looked very peaceful, content and you had a big smile on your face."

Ephiny moved on her back to look at Blaise who had leaned over her... "I had a dream about our children." Ephiny answered with a smile as she lightly moved Blaise’s hair off her forehead.

"Children?" Blaise smiled... "where they good looking?" Blaise teased.

"Drop dead gorgeous...just like you!" Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise’s arm.

"Whew...that’s a relief to know...I was worried that they might look like a hydra or something."

"Blaise!...why would you say something like that?"

"Well...my family can spawn some pretty freaky looking creatures...I mean I heard all about how freaky dad and hope’s son looked!" Blaise chuckled.

"That’s because hope was the daughter of a demon...our children are going to be gorgeous!"

"As long as they look like their mommie than yes." Blaise answered as she leaned down and kissed Ephiny... "how many did we have?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"Two and another on the way." Ephiny smiled.

"Good that means you haven’t denied me sex in the future." Blaise laughed.

"How could I deny you that?" Ephiny laughed... "Blaise...promise me our children will be well loved and not manipulated."

"I promise that they will be loved beyond belief and I promise to spoil them any chance I can get!" Blaise laughed as she kissed Ephiny.

Blaise laid next to Ephiny who wrapped her naked body on Blaise’s and kissed her neck... "goodnight baby."

"Night Eph." Blaise answered as she held her lover tight and kissed her head through her beautiful blond curly hair.

The two horses finished their horseplay and headed back to the stables... "Argo, what about the saddle’s?"

"Leave them there...they will never know it was us anyway. They will blame it on one of the amazons."

"Oh, you are such a bad girl Argo!" Taz answered as they entered the stables.

"You weren’t complaining earlier when I was bad." Argo answered as they entered their stalls for the night and began to munch on hay hungry from their horseplay.

The next morning Blaise woke to soft kisses along her neck and chest. She opened her eyes to see Ephiny’s beautiful face looking at her.

"I’m looking forward to seeing your face the first thing in the morning for the rest of my life baby." Blaise replied as she kissed Ephiny.

"I’m looking forward to it too...I can’t believe we will be joined in two days honey...I didn’t think I’d ever find someone to share my life with." Ephiny answered with amazement.

"Well...I didn’t have much of a choice when it came to you Eph."

"What do you mean?" Ephiny asked as she perked up wondering what Blaise meant.

"Well...I guess it explains how you just threw yourself at me when we first met..."

"What?!" Ephiny asked as she interrupted Blaise.

"Sure...I didn’t stand a chance with you Eph...you threw yourself at me and I had no choice but to fall in love with you!" Blaise answered teasingly with a laugh.

"Is that what you think Blaise?" Ephiny asked with agitation.

"Baby...I’m teasing you...I fell in love with you the moment I looked into your beautiful eyes...but you did throw yourself at me." Blaise teased.

"No...I didn’t...did I?" Ephiny smiled a little embarrassed.

"Yes...but I didn’t mind at all."

"I couldn’t help myself that I fell in love with you at first site and I didn’t want you to walk out of my life without taking a chance." Ephiny smiled and kissed Blaise.

"I’m glad that you did baby."

"What do you say to some breakfast?" Ephiny asked.

"Are you on the menu?" Blaise asked as she flashed a sexy smile.

"That’s later...but for now how does some eggs sound?"

"Hmm...delicious!" Blaise answered with a smile.

"Let’s go get some then." Ephiny replied as she got out of bed.

Ephiny began to dress as Blaise got up and moved to her. Blaise pressed her body up against Ephiny’s and wrapped her arms around her... "I love you Eph." Blaise whispered in her ear as she placed a soft kiss on her cheek.

Ephiny turned around and took Blaise in her arms looking into her blue eyes... "I love you more than life itself baby." Ephiny smiled and kissed Blaise passionately.

They broke their kiss and began to dress... "aah...Blaise...I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with Solari." Ephiny replied slightly uneasy with the conversation.

"You know...I have completely forgotten all about her and I have no idea where she has been hiding out."

"What would you think if I decided to forgive her?" Ephiny asked as she turned to Blaise.

"If that’s what you want to do then I will support you totally babe." Blaise answered with a slight smile.

"But how do you feel about it Blaise?" Ephiny asked as she moved towards Blaise.

"I’m not too happy with Solari right now and I will never trust her again...it’s going to take me awhile to forgive her for what she has done...but if you feel in your heart that you can trust her and forgive her than I will support your decision." Blaise answered as she put her hands on Ephiny’s shoulders for support.

"She has been a good friend and loyal advisor...well...up to now but I do trust her to a point and she will have to work at it for me to fully trust her again...but I want her to be back where she belongs...I’m sure the embarrassment of everything that has happened has been punishment enough for her...besides how can you blame a girl for falling in love with such a gorgeous woman such as yourself?" Ephiny smiled and hugged Blaise.

"I hope everything works out between you both for your benefit Eph." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny on her head and finished dressing.

"Now...if I can only find her." Ephiny replied.

"I’m sure she will show up soon...hey, how about those eggs?" Blaise asked as she reached her hand out for Ephiny’s.

"They sound good!" Ephiny smiled and put her hand in Blaise’s as they exited the hut for breakfast.

They entered the food hut and headed over to where Xena and Gabrielle where dining.

"Good morning ladies and Xena." Blaise joked as Xena pointed her fork at Blaise and curled her lip up with a growl.

"Good morning." Gabrielle answered with a laugh.

Blaise and Ephiny sat down to join them and ordered the eggs they had spoken about earlier for breakfast.

"Aah...Gabrielle...I have decided to forgive Solari...she’s a good amazon and she has been loyal to me up until this point."

Xena looked at Blaise who seemed to be more reserved at the idea of Solari being forgiven.

"Are you sure that’s what you want to do?...she does need to be punished for her betrayal."

"Yes... I’m sure... I want to forgive her and I think her not being here with her sisters plus the embarrassment of the situation has been punishment enough don’t you?"

"Well...I’m sure it is punishment Ephiny but I intend to drop her a rank and make her work her way back up to gain our trust in her... okay?"

"Sounds good Gabrielle...now we just have to find her." Ephiny replied with concern.

Blaise continued to eat her eggs and not add an opinion to the conversation. She noticed Xena looking at her trying to read her thoughts. Blaise stuck her tongue out at Xena which was loaded with chewed eggs.

Xena snickered and threw a piece of egg at Blaise inconspicuously to not tip off Gabrielle and Ephiny to their antics. Blaise loaded her fork up with egg, pulled it back aiming it at Xena and let the eggs fly hitting Xena in the face as she looked up from her plate.

"Looks like you have egg on your face Xena." Blaise replied with a loud laugh.

"Very funny Blaise." Xena answered with anger as she wiped off the eggs.

"What are you two doing?" Gabrielle asked with embarrassment.

"Blaise started it Gabrielle." Xena whined.

"I’m sure you’re not an innocent party in this whole thing." Gabrielle answered.

Blaise snickered and scrunched her face at Xena laughing because she was scolded despite Blaise being the culprit.

"Do you see that Gabrielle!" Xena pointed with agitation at Blaise... "she’s laughing at me because she knows she started it and I’m getting the blame."

Gabrielle turned to Blaise who was no longer smiling... "what did I do?" Blaise asked with a look of a innocence.

"Oh, come on Gabrielle." Xena replied.

"I didn’t see her do anything so, I can’t tell which one of you is the culprit."

Blaise felt someone grab her earlobe... "ouch!" Blaise replied as she looked up to see who it was that had a hold of her ear... "mother...what?" Blaise asked with bewilderment.

"I saw you teasing your sister...now cut it out and eat your breakfast." Cyrene replied as she sat next to her.

"Okay okay." Blaise answered as she looked down to continue eating.

"You’re both like a couple of kids." Ephiny replied with a chuckle as she continued to eat her breakfast.

Blaise looked up at Xena who had a silly grin on her face and stuck her tongue out at Blaise. Cyrene stomped on Xena’s foot under the table.

"Ouch, mother!"

"That goes for the both of you...now eat!"

"It should be very interesting with the two of you sharing a hut again for the next couple of days." Gabrielle laughed.

"Oh, man that thing again!" Xena replied.

"You know the rules." Gabrielle replied.

"What are we talking about here?" Cyrene asked confused.

"When there is a joining the two people are to be separated for two days before the ceremony which is amazon tradition." Gabrielle explained.

Blaise leaned to Ephiny and whispered in her ear... "how will you sleep without me?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"I won’t be able to sleep without you so, I guess I’ll have to sneak out to see you." Ephiny whispered back and kissed Blaise on the cheek.

Blaise had a very big smile on her face as she leaned back up to finish breakfast and winked at Ephiny.

"Hey, Xena can you go into town with me today?" Blaise asked.

"Sure...I have nothing else to do seeing as how I’m getting kicked out of my hut." Xena answered as she looked at Gabrielle and gave her a look of disappointment.

"Oh, baby!" Gabrielle replied as she pinched Xena’s cheek... "will you miss me?" Gabrielle teased.

"Very funny...what is this tease the warrior princess day?"

"Xena let’s get going...I have to stop by the hut...how about getting the horses and I’ll meet you at the stables."

"I’m on it." Xena answered as she got up from the table and kissed Gabrielle goodbye.

"I’ll walk you back to the hut Blaise." Ephiny replied as they left the table.

"I guess it’s just you and I Gabrielle." Cyrene smiled.

"Looks that way." Gabrielle answered.

Blaise and Ephiny entered their hut..."what did you need from the hut Blaise?"

"Nothing I just wanted to get you here to tell you that I will meet you in the stables once Gabrielle falls asleep."

"What about Xena?" Ephiny asked as the two devised their plan to meet.

"I’ll tell her I’m going to visit mother...she won’t follow...are you sure you don’t want to follow tradition?"

"No...I have always thought two days apart where too many and I have tried to change them...just as long as we don’t see each other the day of our ceremony before I walk up the aisle to accept your hand we will be okay." Ephiny explained as she kissed Blaise... "what are you going to town for?"

"Something to wear for our joining...anything in particular you want me to wear?"

"No...you look sexy in anything that you wear...besides you could wear a sack and it wouldn’t matter to me as long as you’re waiting for me at the alter in two days." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Okay...then a sack will be what I’ll wear!" Blaise answered with a laugh and hugged Ephiny... "see you tonight baby." Blaise whispered in her ear as she kissed Ephiny goodbye.

Blaise and Xena where joined by Tarus for the trip into town... "Blaise what are you going into town for?" Xena asked.

"I need something to wear for the joining."

"You’ve got to be kidding me Blaise!...I hate to shop." Xena answered with agitation.

"Well...got back to the village and twittle your thumbs then...Tarus and I will go." Blaise shot back with a laugh as her brother joined in for one too at the thought of Xena twittling her thumbs.

"You two are a bunch of laughs aren’t you." Xena snarled as she heeled Argo to get a move on.

Tarus and Blaise looked at each other laughing as they kicked their horses to a run. They all entered town to find the streets packed with shoppers.

"Great!...it’s packed...just what I want to deal with a crowd." Xena replied gruffly.

"Why are you so grumpy?" Blaise asked.

"I need some action I’m bored!"

"Well...push some of these people out of the way so, I can find something to wear...will that make you happy?" Blaise asked teasingly.

"I’m gonna start with you if you don’t watch it."

"Chill Xena!" Tarus chimed in.

"And you will be next brother." Xena answered as she pointed at him.

"Ooh, we’re scared!" Blaise pretended to be scared as she snuggled up to Tarus as they all laughed.

After searching and fighting the crowds in the town square Xena decided she had enough aggravation. She wiped her face with her hands and rolled her eyes.

"Blaise if you don’t pick something out soon I think I’m going to kill you."

I can’t help it if I can’t find anything...neither one of you are very much help!"

"You need a fashion consultant not a warrior princess." Xena snapped back.

"Yeah...I sure could use Salmoneus right about now."

"Salmoneus." Xena answered.

"Yeah...you know Sal..."

"I know who he is Blaise...he’s right over there!" Xena pointed across the square.

"Let’s get him then."

They headed over towards him... "Salmoneus!" Xena shouted.

"Aah..Xena, Blaise, Tarus.!" he answered startled... "I didn’t do anything wrong Xena."

"What?" Xena asked with bewilderment.

"No little man we need your help." Blaise answered.

"Sure...is it some kind of mission."

The three looked at each other and smiled... "yeah...my sanity." Xena answered.

"I’m good Xena but I don’t know if I can help you with that."

"Sure you can...all you have to do is find Blaisey here an outfit for her joining ...in a hurry."

"Well...congratulations Blaise!" Salmoneus answered with excitement... "I take it the messenger has not delivered my invitation yet." Salmoneus lowered his voice and laughed.

"You’re invited as long as you can find something for me to wear."

"Okay but it might take awhile."

"Oh, great!" Xena through her hands up in disgust.

"Xena...go into the pub have a port and clean your sword or something!" Blaise answered.

"That’s the best idea you’ve had all day." Xena snapped as she headed off to the pub.

"Okay...let’s get to it little man...you coming too Tarus?"

"Yeah...this should be more interesting than watching Xena clean her sword a million times!"

The trio headed back in to the thick of the crowd in search of a dazzling outfit for Blaise’s joining.

Blaise and Tarus joined Xena at the pub after shopping for two candle marks.

"It’s about time you two ladies finished shopping!" Xena answered with a laugh.

Blaise and Tarus sat down at the table next to Xena... "my feet are killing me!" Tarus replied.

"Salmoneus was a big help and I’m going to be quite the deal on my big day...if Ephiny isn’t in love with me now she will be when she sees me in this outfit." Blaise answered with cockiness and a laugh.

"You sure Taz will be able to hold that big head of yours for our trip back?" Xena asked sarcastically.

"Is our little warrior princess feeling better?" Blaise answered in a little kid voice as she pinched Xena’s cheek.

"Blaise I’m warning you!"

Blaise put her arm around Xena’s neck... "come on Xena...don’t be such a grouch...I’m getting joined in a couple of days...I thought you would be happy for me."

"Blaise you know I’m happy for you...I’m just in a bad mood it’ll pass...let’s go back." Xena answered as she patted Blaise on the back.

The three made it back to the village as the sunset over the horizon and headed in for dinner. After dinner Blaise did some menial tasks to waste time until she met Ephiny.

"Xena I’m going over to talk with mother for a little while."

"That’s good then I’ll have some peace and quite so, I can get some sleep." Xena answered with a smile.

Blaise left the hut and headed for the stables to wait for Ephiny. She got Taz ready for when Ephiny arrived. Blaise waited for half a candle mark before Ephiny entered the stables.

"Hey, baby!...Gabrielle took awhile to fall asleep!" Ephiny informed Blaise as she wrapped her arms around her for a hug and kiss.

"Let’s get going."

Blaise and Ephiny mounted Taz to head out of the village as quietly as possible.

"Where are we going Blaise?" Ephiny asked as she leaned her body against Blaise.

"We’re going dancing baby...I hope you have your good dancing boots on." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny’s cheek.

"Dancing!...Blaise why dancing?"

"I want to show my future bride off and hold her in my arms as we dance...besides it’s something different to do."

"I’m sure we’ll have fun then." Ephiny answered with a smile.

Blaise and Ephiny made their way back into town and stabled Taz before heading off to the dance club. They walked up hand and hand to the entrance to the bar.

"Blaise!...It’s great to see you!" the bouncer replied with excitement.

"Thanks how much do we owe for cover?"

"Nothing...you’re our guest...head in."

"Thanks." Blaise answered as she looked at Ephiny and smiled.

Blaise led Ephiny into the crowded dance club by the hand and was welcomed by a group of her admiring fans.

"Blaise!...we’ve missed you...oh, are you going to sing tonight?" a group of women asked as they surrounded Blaise leaving Ephiny out of the group. Ephiny stood by feeling left out and jealous of the women mobbing Blaise.

"Sorry ladies...I’m not singing this evening." Blaise answered as she looked through the group for Ephiny.

"Oh, please for us!"

"The only woman I’m singing for is my bride to be ladies...I’m retired...sorry." Blaise answered as she grabbed Ephiny’s hand and pulled her close to her... "excuse us ladies."

"Oh, Blaise...we are so disappointed." the ladies whined as they watched Blaise and Ephiny head for the bar. Blaise nodded to the bar keep for two ports which he delivered promptly.

Blaise took a sip of her port and turned her back to the bar to check out the crowd. Ephiny stood in front of Blaise and pressed her body up against her as Blaise wrapped her free arm around Ephiny.

"What’s that for?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"I have to show these women you’re mine!" Ephiny answered with a smile as Blaise put her drink down on the bar and wrapped her arm around Ephiny.

Ephiny leaned up and kissed Blaise passionately as she hugged her tightly... "I like it when you’re jealous baby!" Blaise replied seductively.

"Excuse me...would you mind if I danced with Blaise?" a woman asked who had approached the two.

"Yes...I mind!" Ephiny answered with anger as the woman walked away... "geez, does she not see us in each other’s arms?"

"Women love other women who are already spoken for honey...it’s a big turn on for them."

"Is that coming from experience?" Ephiny teased.

"Hey, let’s dance."

"Aah...I’m not too good at it Blaise." Ephiny answered nervously.

"Come on all you have to do is follow me." Blaise answered as she grabbed Ephiny’s hand and led her onto the dance floor.

Blaise and Ephiny danced for over a half a candle mark... "Blaise I need a drink." Ephiny exclaimed as they both headed back to the bar for a drink.

"Whew! that is exhilarating Blaise and so much fun." Ephiny exclaimed with excitement.

"I take it you’re having fun?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile as she wiped the sweat off of Ephiny’s forehead... "did I ever tell you that you look incredibly sexy when you are drenched in sweat?"

Ephiny smiled and pinched Blaise.. "oh, stop!"

"I’ll be right back Eph." Blaise replied as she walked over to the DJ booth and spoke with her momentarily before returning to Ephiny’s side.

"Can I have this dance?" Blaise asked with a smile as she held her hand out for Ephiny to take.

"I would be delighted." Ephiny answered with a smile as she held Blaise’s hand and they headed to the dance floor as a very seductive slow song began to play.

"This song is going out to Ephiny from her intended...may they have a wonderfully happy life together." the DJ announced as the crowd cheered.

"Blaise!" Ephiny replied with an embarrassed smile.

"Come here." Blaise answered seductively as she pulled Ephiny into her arms and put her thigh between Ephiny’s leg. Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny as did Ephiny to Blaise and she began to grind her body against Ephiny’s to the rhythm of the seductive song.

Blaise whispered in Ephiny’s ear the words to the song... "I wanna kiss you in Athens... I wanna hold your hand in Rome...I wanna run naked in a rainstorm...make love in a chariot cross country...you put this in me...so, now what?...so, now what?"

Ephiny became aroused at the seductive movement of their bodies against one another and with Blaise whispering the song in her ear.

"Wanting, needing, waiting for you to justify my love...hoping, praying for you to justify my love." Blaise replied letting out a seductive sigh as she pressed her thigh against Ephiny’s center... "Okay...I want to know you...not like that...I don’t wanna be your mother...I don’t wanna be your sister either...I just wanna be your lover...I wanna be your baby...kiss me." Blaise lightly brushed her lips against Ephiny’s parted mouth..."that’s right, kiss me." Blaise slid her tongue in Ephiny’s mouth for a sensual kiss as she pressed her body closer to Ephiny’s.

"Wanting, needing, waiting for you to justify my love...yearning, burning for you to justify my love..what are you gonna do?...what are you gonna do?" Blaise looked into Ephiny’s eyes with her face so close that their lips brushed against one another... "talk to me-tell me your dreams...am I in them?"

"Oh, Blaise." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise moved her mouth to Ephiny’s ear... "tell me your fears...are you scared?...tell me your stories."

Ephiny slid her hands up around the back of Blaise’s neck as she became more aroused from the feeling of Blaise’s thigh grinding against her sex.

"I’m not afraid of who you are...we can fly!...poor is the man whose pleasures depend on the permission of another." Blaise moved her hand down Ephiny’s leg and slid it under her skirt. Blaise moved her hand slowly to Ephiny’s butt and squeezed her firm backside... "love me, that’s right, love me...I wanna be your baby...uhmm..yeah."

Ephiny began to softly bite and kiss Blaise’s neck as she moved her sex over Blaise’s thigh. Blaise slid her free hand around Ephiny’s waist... "wanting, needing, waiting, for you to justify my love." Blaise moved to face Ephiny... "I’m open and ready for you to justify my love." Blaise moved her tongue past Ephiny’s parted lips for a passionate kiss as she caressed Ephiny’s butt as the music continued.

Ephiny hugged Blaise as the music was ending... "I had an orgasm Blaise." Ephiny whispered in Blaise’s ear.

"You’re not the only one baby." Blaise answered with a smile as she kissed Ephiny again.

"Blaise we need to leave." Ephiny raised her eyebrow and smiled.

"Yes...dear!" Blaise took Ephiny’s hand and they exited the bar.

"Uhmm...Blaise I need to go take care of something."

"What baby?" Blaise asked confused as she turned to Ephiny who had stopped.

"Nature calls...you know?" Ephiny raised her eyebrows trying to get Blaise to understand what she meant.

"Oh, okay...I’ll go get Taz and meet you back here."

"Okay." Ephiny answered as she headed to the outhouse.

Blaise went over to the stables and got Taz to bring him to the meeting place with Ephiny. Blaise walked across the town square whistling with a smile on her face as she recalled the fun her and Ephiny had in the bar. Blaise looked up to see Ephiny was surrounded by four thugs and Ephiny was caught in the middle of them.

"Ephiny!" Blaise shouted as she dropped Taz’s reigns and ran towards her. Blaise jumped and flipped over into the group planting her feet squarely into two of the men’s chests knocking them out. Blaise moved and delivered a roundhouse kick to the face of the third man knocking him out as Ephiny kicked the fourth man in the knee sending him to the ground screaming in pain.

"Are you okay baby?" Blaise asked slightly out of breath and with nervousness.

"No...I’m not okay." Ephiny shouted.

"Where are you hurt?...let me see." Blaise answered as she put her hands on Ephiny’s arms.

"Blaise...stop it!" Ephiny shouted with anger as she jerked away from Blaise.

"What?" Blaise asked confused.

"I’m pissed at you!...I could have handled all of those guys without your help!"

"Eph." Blaise replied as she moved towards her.

"No...I’m an amazon not a helpless woman!"

"That’s suppose to make me feel better?"

Ephiny mounted Taz and heeled him which Taz didn’t obey... "let’s go Taz!" Ephiny ordered.

"Ephiny stop kicking him...he won’t go until I tell him too...look you needed my help."

"No...I told you I’m an amazon and very capable of taking care of myself...until you can respect that than we can’t be together."

"But honey...we had such a great time tonight...come on don’t do this." Blaise pleaded.

"You should have thought about the great time we had tonight before you decided to insult me the way you did and look down on me!" Ephiny leaned towards Taz’s ears... "there’s a bucket full of apples with your name on them." Ephiny kicked Taz into a gallop as the pair left the town quickly.

"Great!" Blaise replied throwing her hands up in disgust... "I lose my bride to be and my own horse betrays me for apples!" Blaise headed back to the village on foot.

Blaise got back to the village and headed straight for Gabrielle’s hut. Blaise knocked on the door as Gabrielle answered the knock.

"Gabrielle...I need to talk to Ephiny." Blaise stated firmly.

"She doesn’t want to talk to you right now Blaise."

"Let me in Gabrielle." Blaise answered with agitation as she pushed past Gabrielle and was stopped by a strong hand to her chest.

"Let’s go for a walk Blaise." Xena replied as she stepped from behind Gabrielle and pushed Blaise back out the door.

"Alright...I’m going!" Blaise answered agitated.

Blaise and Xena headed down to the lake... "what is this crap?" Xena asked with agitation... "I’ve been relegated to being the warrior match maker princess between you two Blaise."

"Oh, give me a freaking break Xena!" Blaise answered with anger... "I’m tired of hearing how bored you are and how you want some action...are you in that much of a hurry to fulfill that stupid vision of your death?" Blaise shouted.

"What?" Xena snapped as she moved closer to Blaise.

"You heard me...you have a great life right here that you can’t be happy with...you just have to get back on the road...I may have lost the love of my life and you’re worried about playing matchmaker?

"You’re right Blaise...I should appreciate my life the way it is right now...I guess I feel like I don’t really deserve this much happiness...now, what’s gong on with you and Ephiny?"

"Xena...you deserve every happiness that has come to you now, relish it and don’t let it slip away because one day it could all be taken from you.

"I will Blaise...I definitely will." Xena answered as she gave a half smile realizing that Blaise spoke the truth.

"Ephiny doesn’t think I respect the fact that she’s an amazon Xena." Blaise answered as she lowered her head.

"Well...do you?"

Blaise looked up at Xena... "I do but I just got nervous when I saw her with those thugs surrounding her and I just reacted to my fear...I just wanted to protect her."

"I know what you felt in that situation because I feel the same way about Gabrielle when we’re in the same predicament...but I’m confident in Gabrielle’s fighting skills and I allow her to be who she is Blaise."

"You’re right Xena...I just don’t want to be without Ephiny and it’s in my nature to protect her at all costs."

"Blaise...trust me when I tell you that Ephiny could match our fighting skills to a certain point...she’s a strong, proud, independent amazon woman and you should respect that...you can still protect her but do it by her side...don’t take control over the situation."

"I will if she would take me back Xena." Blaise answered as she looked down at the ground.

"Hey...let’s see what your big sister the love matcher can do okay?" Xena answered with a smile.

"Thanks Xena." Blaise answered with a smile as Xena headed back to the village to talk with Ephiny.

Blaise made her way up to the cliff she normally does her morning training sessions on and sat down with her feet hanging over the edge. Blaise looked over the edge at the water as she threw rocks in the lake and contemplated her conversation with Xena. Blaise sat for over a half a candle mark pitching rocks in the lake when she heard someone approach.

She turned to see it was Ephiny approaching and she sat next to Blaise.

Blaise held her head down in shame from her treatment of Ephiny... "how did you get up here?"

"I’m an amazon remember?...a trained hunter and warrior." Ephiny answered with a slight smile.

Blaise shifted her eyes up to look at Ephiny as she kept her head down... "I seem to keep forgetting that fact don’t I?" Blaise asked with a smirk as she looked back down and pitched a rock in the lake.

"Why do you not want to accept that fact Blaise?"

"Ephiny." Blaise replied as she looked at her lover... "have you ever been in love with someone so much that..."

"They make you cry?" Ephiny interrupted Blaise’s sentence.

"Well...that too." Blaise answered with a slight smile.

"Blaise...you’re that person." Ephiny answered as she put her hand on Blaise’s... "you’re the person I have dreamed about all of my life...when you sleep I watch you just to see you breath...I see the smile on your face when you sleep and I wonder if you’re dreaming of me!" Ephiny replied as she pointed to herself... "I treasure every moment I have with you baby and it hurts me to know that the person that means so much to me doesn’t respect and love me for the person that I am."

"Baby I do love and respect you for who you are but..." Blaise let out a sigh as she looked down at the lake afraid to look Ephiny in the eye... "when you ...aah." Blaise took a deep breath..."when I lost you I felt as though my world had come to an end and that the one thing I loved more than life itself was gone." Blaise looked at Ephiny who had tears in her eyes... "I felt so much sorrow, guilt, and pain that I no longer wanted to live...all the happiness, goodness and love left me...I don’t want to ever go through that with you again...so, when I saw you there with those pigs surrounding you I freaked!...I just wanted to protect you baby...can you understand that?" Blaise asked as tears welled in her eyes.

Ephiny moved to Blaise and held her in her arms... "I do honey...I didn’t know you went through so much pain when I died or I wouldn’t have been so harsh on you ...I’m sorry."

Ephiny kissed Blaise on the cheek as Blaise held Ephiny tight.

"I love you Ephiny and I’m sorry for being a jerk...are you still interested in meeting me at the alter?" Blaise asked with a smile as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes.

"I intend to meet you at the alter to give you my heart and my hand for all of eternity...I love you Blaise." Ephiny smiled and kissed Blaise... "come on we need to get back because I’m already in trouble with the queen for sneaking out last night with you."

"It’s a good thing she’s family then." Blaise smiled as Ephiny reached for Blaise’s hand to help her up

The two lovers made their way down the cliff holding hands and laughing at one another. As they made their way to the edge of the village Blaise took Ephiny into her arms and kissed her.

"I love you and the next time I see you will be as my wife." Blaise replied with a loving smile.

"Yes...and you make sure you behave at your party!" Ephiny smiled and poked Blaise in the stomach.

"I promise to behave baby." Blaise laughed and kissed Ephiny.

They both headed off to their separate huts for some much needed rest.

"Blaise!...Blaise!...wake up." Xena replied as she tapped Blaise on the shoulder to wake her.

Blaise jumped up startled from her sleep..."wha...what’s going on? Blaise asked as she cleared her throat and wiped the sleep from her eyes.

"Come on...get changed."

"What for?" Blaise asked confused.

"Wake up sleepyhead...did you forget?...it’s the night before your joining and you know what that means?" Xena answered with a smile.

"Party?" Blaise asked with a sly grin.

"You got it baby!...go bath so, we can head out." Xena stated as she threw Blaise a towel.

Blaise headed out of the hut towards the hot tub area. Xena poked her head out of the hut... "chop, chop little sis." Xena replied clapping her hands to get Blaise to move quicker.

"You let me sleep a long time woman so, don’t rush me!...I can’t believe it’s dark already!" Blaise answered.

"Well...I felt bad for you so, I let you sleep now... get! Xena shouted as she waved her hands to get Blaise moving.

"Okay already!" Blaise answered as she headed in for her bath.

Blaise hurried to finish her bath and get dressed for her party later in the evening. Blaise left the hut to find Xena and Tarus waiting with the horses.

"Xena...I think you’re more excited than me!" Blaise teased.

"It’s payback time little sister." Xena answered with a laugh as she mounted Argo.

Blaise looked at Tarus and laughed... "you’d think she would learn...brother." Blaise shook her head.

"Learn what?...what did I miss?" Tarus asked with confusion as he mounted his horse.

"Xena realized the night before her joining that trying to drink me under the table is not one of her many skills." Blaise laughed.

"Well...give it up...what happened?" Tarus asked with a smile.

Blaise mounted Taz... "she got wasted and passed out...I had to throw her in the lake the next morning to wake her for the ceremony!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

"I would love to have seen that one Blaise!" Tarus answered with a laugh.

"Yeah...yeah....let’s go!" Xena answered sarcastically as she kicked Argo to a gallop with Blaise and Tarus following.

The trio entered town and headed to the dance club for the party

"Whoa!...It’s crowded in here with hot women!" Blaise replied with a big smile.

"You have many fans Blaise...oh, and don’t forget." Xena answered as she poked Blaise’s chest... "you are to behave this evening!"

"Yes boss!" Blaise answered sarcastically... "is this a private party or what?"

"Yeah...this is a gift from Tarus, Salmoneus and myself for you." Xena answered.

"Salmoneus chipped in too?" Blaise asked with a laugh.

"It was actually his idea which he posed to us and we agreed to do it here... I think he’s charging admission though." Xena laughed.

"Blaise!" Salmoneus shouted with excitement as he rushed over with open arms and hugged Blaise.

"Hey, Sal...thanks for the party." Blaise answered with a smile.

"Anything for you Blaise...I owe you my life." Salmoneus answered with a tighter hug.

"No...Sal...you don’t owe me anything except maybe your friendship." Blaise replied with a smile as she patted him on the back.

"Everyone!" Salmoneus put his hand up to quite the crowd... "the guest of honor has arrived folks!...the main objective is to show her a good time and to get her drunk!"

The crowd cheered and held their drinks up as a toast to Blaise as she flashed an embarrassed smile. Xena grabbed four mugs and handed them to the group...

"A toast...may you have a gloriously happy life and may you have an abundance of sex too!" Xena replied with a laugh as they sealed the toast with a drink of the port.

Xena and Salmoneus headed towards the food table as Blaise began to follow but Tarus grabbed her arm to stop her.

"Blaise!" Tarus replied.

"What’s up bro?"

"Do you think you could hook me up with a woman?" Tarus whispered with embarrassment.

"Dude...stick with me...the chicks dig me and because you’re my brother they will dig you too!" Blaise smiled and put her arm around Tarus’ neck for a hug as they walked over to join Xena and Salmoneus.

"Oh, Blaise!...come dance with me!" a group of woman giggled as they grabbed Blaise pulling her towards the dance.

"Wait!" Blaise stopped and went back to grab Tarus to bring him with them.

"Blaise!...I can’t dance!" Tarus answered with embarrassment.

"You’re gonna have to learn quick then bro!" Blaise laughed as they all made their way onto the dance floor.

Blaise and Tarus danced with the ladies for a couple of dances and Blaise nonchalantly slipped away from the group leaving her brother to continue dancing. Blaise headed over to the table where Xena was sitting with a group of women.

"Xena...what’s going on?" Blaise asked with a sly grin.

"We where just discussing some type of drinking game for you to join in on Blaisey!" Xena smiled and answered sarcastically.

"It’s your lucky day sister just so happens I know one seeing as how you are no good with playing dinars...maybe you will stand a chance with up the river down the river." Blaise smiled and laughed.

"Bring it on!" Xena answered.

"Okay...ladies...here is how you play the game...everyone gets two cards and we place four down on the table, hence, up the river...now, if you’re cards come up on this turn of the cards you have to drink however many drinks your card falls under. So, the first card is worth one drink, second worth two, third worth three, and the fourth card is worth four drinks...got it?" Blaise asked and looked at the group for confirmation which everyone nodded in agreement... "now, when we go down the river if your cards come up you get to assign people that number of drinks...so, we ready to get drunk?" Blaise asked with a smile.

Blaise dealt two cards to each person in the group and laid the four cards down to go up the river.

"Okay...it looks like Xena’s cards came up in the third and fourth spots so, you drink seven of them warrior princess!" Blaise replied as the group laughed... "we need a pitcher over here for Xena!" Blaise laughed as Xena drank her seven drinks.

The group played for over a candle mark each person ganging up on Xena to make her drink.

"How ya feeling Xena?" Blaise asked with a laugh.

"Oh, just wonderful...Baise." Xena slurred with a silly smile on her face.

"Looks like another trip to the lake for you warrior princess!" Blaise laughed and looked up to see Aphrodite standing with Cupid. Blaise moved over to the pair... "hey, Aphie!...Cuppie!" Blaise hugged them both.

"Blaise...keep the Cuppie thing down okay?...I got a rep to maintain you know." Cupid asked with embarrassment.

"Sorry bro!...I’m psyched you two are here." Blaise answered with excitement.

"Yeah...well...mom’s going through the empty nest thing and I couldn’t stand to hear her whining anymore so, I told her to come see you."

"Aphie...what’s wrong?" Blaise asked with concern.

"Oh, sweetpea!" Aphrodite whined... "it’s just that my baby is going to belong to another woman and I’m upset."

"Aah...come here." Blaise hugged Aphrodite... "you’re still one of my favorite girls and you always will be."

"I know but I miss you hangin around Olympus with me and I hardly ever see you anymore baby." Aphrodite continued her whining.

"I promise to come and visit more often Aphie...I hope you like my bride to be because I love her very much...you are coming to the joining tomorrow aren’t you?...because I want you to share in my happiness."

"We’ll be there Blaise." Aphrodite answered as she smiled and kissed Blaise... "I love you honey and we have a very special surprise wedding gift for you."

"I love you too." Blaise smiled... "what surprise do you have for me?" Blaise asked with a wondering smile as to the present.

"It wouldn’t be a surprise if I told you sweetpea...you’ll have to wait and you’ll know what it is when you get it." Aphrodite answered with a smile.

"I will be sure to keep an eye out for it then...too bad you two can’t enjoy the port it’s very good!"

"I will have to settle for enjoying the scenery instead...ooh, there are some hot women here Blaise." Cupid answered with a grin.

"Is there?...I hadn’t noticed." Blaise answered with a smile.

"Blaise...how are you going to stay tied down to one woman?" Aphrodite asked.

"Easy because I love this one with all of my heart."

"Oh, honey...I’m happy for you... just a little jealous but I will welcome her with open arms into our family." Aphrodite answered as she hugged Blaise.

"Blaise...Xena just fell out of the chair!" Cupid replied with a laugh.

"What’s up with the warrior babe?" Aphrodite asked as they all looked over to Xena... "is her annoying little bard keeping her up late with her boring stories?" Aphrodite asked sarcastically.

"Easy Aphie!...The warrior babe is wasted once again...which means I win again!...she got this way at her party before her joining too...I’ll catch you later I better check to see if she’s okay."

"We’ll see you tomorrow baby!" Aphrodite answered as her and Cupid disappeared.

Blaise moved over to help Xena off the floor and back into the chair... "Xena...wake up."

"Yeah...I’m up." Xena slurred.

Blaise made sure that Xena was sitting in the chair securely and headed over to the bar laughing as she grabbed another drink.

Tarus came up and put his arm around Blaise... "hey, the chicks are digging me...I’m drunk!"

"Me too bro...check out Xena though she’s wasted." Blaise answered as they looked at their sister slumped in the chair passed out.

"No way!...that is too funny!...should we get going?"

"We probably should...let me hit the outhouse first though...go get the horses and meet me out front okay?" Blaise replied as she found her words becoming more slurred with each sip from her port.

"Gotcha!" Tarus answered as he made his way through the crowd to the door.

Blaise staggered to the back door and fell through the door onto the ground outside as her foot caught on the door.

Blaise laughed as she laid on the ground... "good thing I didn’t spill my port...that’s important!" she slurred with a laugh.

"Yeah...you don’t want to spill that." a voice came from before her.

Blaise looked up to see some very sexy women’s legs and made her way to her knees to see who they belonged too... "Solari?...where have you been?" Blaise asked as she tried to stand but staggered and Solari helped her up.

"I’ve been around Blaise...I wanted to see you before your joining."

"Listen...Ephiny wants to."

Solari interrupted her... "I don’t want to hear about Ephiny Blaise." Solari answered as she kissed Blaise.

"Solari this isn’t going to happen." Blaise replied as she pulled away from Solari’s kiss.

"I just want you to know what you will be missing Blaise." Solari answered as she put her hand behind Blaise’s neck and pulled her in for a passionate kiss. Solari took Blaise’s hand and put it on her sex.

Blaise pushed Solari away from her... "you bitch!...why can’t you get it through your head that you and I are never going to happen?...I knew you couldn’t be trusted enough for Ephiny’s forgiveness!" Blaise shouted as she spit the taste of Solari out of her mouth.

"You mean Ephiny was to forgive me?"

"Yes...she was Solari but I’m going to make sure that never happens!...Ephiny trusted you with her life and considered you her friend how could you do this to her?"

"I’m sorry Blaise...but I fell in love with you and nothing else mattered to me." Solari began to cry.

"You need to realize that Ephiny and I will be together forever...I will never be with another woman and you need to decide if you want to continue being an amazon because if I tell Ephiny or Gabrielle of this you will no longer be one."

"Being an amazon is all I have left now and I want to be back home again...maybe something can be worked out Blaise...please...would you help me?"

"Why should I help you after all that you have done to Ephiny and I."

"All I can do is try to make it up to the both of you and gain your trust again Blaise...I will work very hard at it and I will gain that trust back one day...please...I’m begging you." Solari pleaded as she cried harder.

"Oh, man!...don’t cry...I hate it when women cry!...okay I won’t say anything but I’ll be watching you and the first thing I see that is fishy you will be gone... got that!" Blaise answered sternly.

"Yes...thank you so much!" Solari replied with a smile as she tried to hug Blaise who backed away from her.

"Don’t let Ephiny or your queen down again." Blaise snapped as she walked past her to the outhouse.

"I won’t Blaise...you’ll see." Solari answered as she left the back of the dance club.

"Women...By the gods why do I have such a weakness for crying women!" Blaise grumbled as she finished her business.

Blaise went back into the club and put Xena over her shoulder who remained passed out.

Blaise put Xena on Argo securely as the trio rode back to the village.

"Blaise...I’ll get the horses you can put the light weight to bed!" Tarus laughed as did Blaise.

"Go figure!...she can handle everything but her liquor!...we better keep that a secret dude or she could be in big trouble!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

"The secrets safe with me...hey, Blaise...aah...I had a great time tonight...thanks for helping me out with the ladies." Tarus stammered nervously.

"What’s family for bro?" Blaise answered with a smile.

"Goodnight Blaise...get some rest you have a big day tomorrow."

"Yeah...I guess I do...thanks and sleep well." Blaise answered with a smile.

Blaise hoisted Xena over her shoulder and carried her off to their hut for some needed rest. Blaise took Xena’s armor off and covered her with a blanket before she began to undress for bed.

In the morning Xena woke before Blaise and felt as though she had been tied behind a runaway chariot as she realized Blaise was cuddled up next to her.

"Aah...my head...that sister of mine did it to me again!" Xena thought to herself angry that she was had again.

"Blaise!" Xena replied.

"Uhmmm...Ephiny." Blaise whispered through her sleep with a smile on her face.

"Get off of me!...I’m not Ephiny." Xena answered with anger as she tried to push Blaise off of her.

Blaise hugged her tighter... "oh, Eph...give me a kiss." Blaise answered through her sleep.

"Blaise!...wake up and get off of me!" Xena shouted as she pushed Blaise off the bed

Blaise peeked her head up on the bed as she sat on the floor... "not a morning person huh?" Blaise asked with a laugh.

"You jerk!" Xena answered with agitation as she sat up... "Ow!...my head!" Xena replied as she put her hand to her head.

"Seems that I have found the way to defeat the warrior princess!" Blaise replied with a laugh as she got up off the floor.

"Yeah...yeah..don’t rub it in!...hey, are you nervous?"

"Not yet...but I will be as soon as I see Ephiny." Blaise answered as she gathered a towel and a robe for her bath... "you coming for a bath or do I need to toss you in the lake again?" Blaise laughed.

"No...no!" Xena answered as she put her hand up in protest... "I can do it myself this time!" Xena answered as she got up off the bed... "oh, man do I feel horrid!"

Blaise laughed and threw Xena a towel... "Grab your robe so we can get cleaned up!"

"Maybe I’ll feel better after a bath." Xena answered as she grabbed her robe.

"I think a cold dip in the lake would clear up your ailment." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"No thank you...I’ll stick to the bath." Xena answered with a smile as they headed off for the bath hut.

They both bathed and headed back to Blaise’s hut to dress for the ceremony. Blaise slid her white short sleeved tunic over her head and tied the laces in the front of the shirt. She pulled on her black leather pants followed by her brand new polished black leather boots that she purchased special for the ceremony.

"Blaise!...what’s up with the sleeveless shirt?" Xena asked with bewilderment at her choice of joining attire.

"Ephiny likes to see my muscular arms...what can I tell you?" Blaise answered with a smirk.

"Okay...if that’s what Ephiny likes then that’s what she’ll get." Xena answered with sarcasm.

Blaise fit her black silk sash snugly around her waist... "how do I look?"

"So far so good." Xena smiled back... "how do I look?"

"Very regal!...it seems weird to see you in anything but your armor." Blaise answered as she examined the long black robe with burgundy trimming and the queen’s royal crest which Xena wore.

"Hey!...is that an insult?" Xena smiled and pointed at Blaise.

"No...I’m just used to seeing you with your armor on...you look more like a regal princess dressed like that." Blaise smiled as she struggle to put on her black cape.

"It goes with the territory when you’re the queen’s consort...here...let me help you!" Xena answered as she moved over to help Blaise tie the cape around her neck.

"Oh, I have always wanted to see this happen!"

Blaise and Xena looked to the door of the hut.

"What happen mother?" Blaise asked.

"My two daughters helping one another out and doing sister things together." Cyrene answered with pride and happiness.

Xena and Blaise looked each other in the eyes and smiled... "sister stuff...yuck!" Blaise joked as Xena laughed.

"You two stop it...I think I’m going to cry from my happiness." Cyrene replied as she walked over to her daughters.

"There you go Blaisey!...you look very dashing...if I weren’t married I might ask you out." Xena replied with a laugh.

"Sorry sis...but you’re not my type...I love blondes!" Blaise laughed as she put her single silver hooped earring with a sword dangling from the hoop in her left ear.

"Blaise honey are you nervous?" Cyrene asked as she looked her daughters over.

"I will be if everyone keeps asking me that." Blaise answered with a smile.

"I’m so glad I could be here to share this day with you Blaise." Cyrene replied with a smile as she hugged Blaise.

"It makes this day so much happier that I’m able to share it with you mother...I’m very grateful to have you in my life." Blaise answered as she kissed her mother on the cheek.

"Hey, ladies!" Tarus replied as he entered the hut... "you all are looking very beautiful."

"You don’t look so bad yourself bro!" Blaise answered with a smile... "hey, could you do me a hug favor?"

"Name it." Tarus answered.

"Could you deliver this to Eph for me?" Blaise asked as she pulled out a wooden box and handed it to her brother... "it’s my wedding gift for Ephiny."

"Can we see it first Blaise?" Xena asked with intrigue... "that is if you don’t mind?"

"Nah...go ahead and show em Tarus." Blaise answered as she put on some perfume.

Tarus opened the box revealing an amazon helm with the strip of leather containing a medium sized diamond in the middle which will fit over the middle of Ephiny’s forehead when she wears it.

"It’s gorgeous Blaise!" Cyrene answered with amazement.

"Ephiny’s going to love it Blaise." Xena answered with a smile.

"I hope so."

"Let me take it over to her then." Tarus answered with a smile as he left the hut.

Gabrielle helped Ephiny with her forest green Strophion which crosses the chest in an X-shape to hold up her breasts.

"There your top is all set." Gabrielle replied as she finished dressing in her long white robe with burgundy trim circled around her royal crest.

Ephiny put on her amazon magenta (purplish red) long form fitting Zoma feminine loin cloth and slid her forest green greaves with magenta colored designs over both forearms.

Ephiny slipped her sandals on... "Gabrielle...I’m very nervous!"

"All brides to be get that way Ephiny." Gabrielle answered as she held her hands for comfort... "the moment you see Blaise your nerves will go away."

"By the gods I hope so!" Ephiny answered with a smile as she heard a knock at the door... "who could that be?"

"It better not be Blaise!" Gabrielle answered with a smile... "who is it?" Gabrielle asked with a shout.

"It’s Tarus...Gabrielle...I have a wedding gift for Ephiny from Blaise." he answered through the closed door.

Ephiny looked at Gabrielle and smiled... "you may enter Tarus." Gabrielle answered back.

Tarus entered the hut and stopped in his tracks stunned as he gazed at Gabrielle and Ephiny standing before him... "by the gods are my sisters lucky!...I can only hope to find a woman half as beautiful as the two of you!" Tarus replied with a stunned look on his face and a half smile.

Both Gabrielle and Ephiny blushed from the comment and looked at one another exchanging a smile... "flattery runs in their family too!" Ephiny replied with a laugh as did Gabrielle.

"Thank you very much for your comment Tarus it was very sweet of you to say."

"It’s the truth." Tarus answered with a smile as he approached Ephiny and stopped before her... "Blaise asked me to give this to you before your joining." he replied as he opened the wooden box.

Ephiny was stunned and speechless by the beauty of the gift. She began to cry as she smiled at Blaise’s gesture.

"Oh, Ephiny...it’s gorgeous!" Gabrielle answered with a smile and equally stunned... "she is so romantic!"

"It’s exquisite Gabrielle." Ephiny answered as she stared at her gift... "will you put it on me?"

"Of course." Gabrielle answered as she picked up the present and stepped behind Ephiny to place around her head... "you’re all set Ephiny."

Ephiny moved over to the mirror to see how it looked on her and wept at the beauty of the amazon helm Blaise had given her.

"Come on Ephiny...don’t cry." Gabrielle replied as she put her hands on her shoulders as she stood behind her... "you don’t want to have red eyes for your ceremony." Gabrielle replied with a smile.

"You’re right Gabrielle...but I have never been so happy in my entire life."

"You look beautiful Ephiny...Blaise is a lucky woman." Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"Yes...she is very lucky and you look absolutely gorgeous...welcome to our family Ephiny." Tarus replied with a smile... "I’ll take the box back to your hut so, you’ll have it there later."

Ephiny smiled at Tarus and approached him... "thank you and I’m happy to be a part of your family." Ephiny replied as she kissed his cheek.

Tarus blushed... "I should be going." he smiled and turned exiting the hut.

Blaise, Xena and Cyrene exited the hut as Tarus approached the trio... "did she like it?"

Blaise asked with worry.

"She loved it Blaise...you are very lucky...she’s a beautiful woman."

"Hey, I better not find out you where hitting on my bride to be!" Blaise teased with a wink.

"Let’s get going before we’re late." Xena answered as they headed towards the ceremonial area.

Blaise and Xena took their places side by side at the front of the alter... "you did remember the ring didn’t you Xena?" Blaise asked as she turned to Xena.

Xena fished through her robe and showed Blaise the ring... "just took me a little while to find it."

"How in tartarus did you find a place in that robe for it?" Blaise asked with a laugh.

"I have many skills...remember?" Xena answered with a smile as she turned and noticed Gabrielle standing at the end of the aisle ready to make her way to the front.

Blaise noticed Xena wasn’t paying attention to her anymore and turned to see what she was looking at. Gabrielle made her way towards the pair as everyone bowed to their queen as she passed.

Xena smiled proudly as her bride made her way to the front of the altar and Blaise winked as Gabrielle passed by her with a slight bow out of respect for the queen.

Gabrielle took her place at the front of the altar and motioned for the bride to join them. Blaise turned to see Ephiny step up at the end of the aisle and her breath was taken away by her beauty. Blaise met Ephiny’s eyes as she made her way up the aisle and smiled at her bride to be.

Xena nudged Blaise in the back... "breathe Blaise!" Xena whispered.

Blaise took a deep breath and continued her gaze at Ephiny as she approached. Ephiny stopped and reached her hand out to Blaise. Blaise threw her cape off her shoulder and took Ephiny’s hand in her own as Ephiny moved to Blaise’s side. The lovers smiled and stared into each other’s eyes as Gabrielle began the ceremony.

Blaise and Ephiny where lost in the moment and barely heard a word Gabrielle had said to them.

"Blaise...do you promise to love, honor, cherish Ephiny in sickness and in health for all of eternity?" Gabrielle asked as she looked at Blaise who didn’t answer... "Blaise?" Gabrielle asked to get her attention.

"With all of my heart." Blaise answered softly as she smiled at Ephiny.

"Ephiny...do you also make the same promise to Blaise?"

"Everyday for the rest of my life and throughout eternity." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Blaise you may say your vows to Ephiny now."

Blaise took Ephiny’s hand into her own. She slid the silver ring with a row of diamonds on Ephiny’s finger as she began her vows.

Ephiny...when I first saw you, I saw love

And the first time you touched me, I felt love

You’ve got a way with me and somehow you got me to believe

In everything that I could be

You gave me faith to find my dreams

You’ll never know what that means

You’ve got a way with words

You get me smiling even when it hurts

There’s no way to measure what your love is worth

Oh, how I adore you...like no one before you

I love you just the way you are

Blaise smiled and wiped Ephiny’s tears from her cheek as Gabrielle took a deep breath as she was touched by the moment... "now, your vows Ephiny." Gabrielle asked as she glanced at Xena noticing the warrior princess was misty eyed as well. She smiled and winked at her wife. Xena smiled back and glanced over to her mother who wept openly as Tarus tried to console his mother.

Ephiny smiled as she turned to Eponon who stood next to her and took the ring for Blaise from her. Ephiny slid the thick silver band with a "B" and a "G"intertwined with one another on it.

I do swear that I’ll always be there

I’d give anything and everything

And I will always care

You’re the one I run to

The one that I belong to

The one I want for life

The only one I dream of

Through weakness and strength, happiness and sorrow, for better, for worse

I will love you with every beat of my heart

Blaise’s eyes welled with tears as she raised Ephiny’s hand and placed a soft kiss on it.

"Blaise...you may kiss your bride." Gabrielle replied with a smile.

Blaise looked into Ephiny’s eyes and lightly pushed her long blonde curls off her face.

Blaise moved in slowly and lightly kissed Ephiny’s lips as she moved her hand through her hair resting it gently on her neck.

"I love you Eph." Blaise whispered with her lips never leaving Ephiny’s.

"I love you." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise more passionately.

"Excuse me." Gabrielle whispered... "we do have a reception to get to sometime today ladies."

Blaise and Ephiny stopped their kiss as they rested their heads against one another and laughed softly. Blaise kissed Ephiny lightly again before she straightened up and turned to the crowd to present her beautiful bride. Everyone clapped as Blaise looked back at Ephiny pulling her towards her for another kiss. As they finished their kiss Blaise led Ephiny down the aisle towards the reception hut.

Blaise saw that Aphrodite and Cupid where standing to the back of the crowd. Aphrodite was in tears as Cupid tried to console his mother. Cupid gave Blaise a frustrated look and smiled as they passed. Blaise and Ephiny entered the reception hut to wait for the others. Blaise gathered Ephiny up in a hug as Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck... "I love you wife." Blaise replied with a big smile as she kissed Ephiny.

"This is the second most happiest moment of my life Blaise." Ephiny answered as she looked down into Blaise’s eyes as Blaise held her up.

"Our joining only ranks second place huh?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"The happiest moment was when you told me you loved me baby." Ephiny answered with a smile and kissed Blaise.

"I guess we need to continue creating happy moments then." Blaise answered as she hugged her bride as Gabrielle and Xena entered the hut.

Blaise put Ephiny down as they turned to Xena and Gabrielle... "I’m so happy for you both!" Gabrielle exclaimed as she hugged Ephiny then Blaise.

"Thanks Gabrielle...we’re very happy ourselves." Ephiny asnwered with a smile.

"Ephiny...let me know if my sister gets out of hand and I’ll straighten her up." Xena replied with a smile as she hugged Ephiny and whispered... "I’m glad you are with Blaise...you’re meant for one another...welcome to the family."

"Thanks Xena." Ephiny answered.

"Hey...your arms have been around my wife too long warrior princess...unhand her!" Blaise replied with a laugh.

"Are you jealous?" Xena answered with a smirk.

"Yes...I feel so left out!" Blaise answered sarcastically.

"Come here you big baby." Xena teased as she hugged Blaise and whispered in her ear... "you’re made for one another Blaise make sure you cherish her for eternity."

"I intend to Xena...thanks." Blaise answered with a smile as she kissed her sister’s cheek.

"Oh, Blaise!" Cyrene replied in tears as she hugged her daughter.

"It’s okay mother!" Blaise answered as she held her close.

"It was such a beautiful ceremony...I just couldn’t contain my tears of joy!" Cyrene asnwered as she kissed Blaise on the cheek.

"Ephiny...you are so beautiful." Cyrene replied with a smile as she hugged Ephiny as Blaise received a hug from Tarus... "I’m such a lucky woman."

"How is that Cyrene?" Ephiny asked.

"To be blessed with three beautiful additions to my family...Blaise, Gabrielle and now you Ephiny...a mother couldn’t ask for anymore than what I have." Cyrene answered with happiness... "except that you both call me mother if you don’t mind doing that?"

"I would be honored to call you mother." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"As would I mother." Gabrielle replied.

"Blaise!...could you help me with her!...she is inconsolable!" Cupid asked as he struggled to lead Aphrodite into the hut as everyone else stood with smiles on their faces.

"Aphie...come here." Blaise answered as she took Aphrodite in her arms.

"Blaise...I’m such a sap but I can’t help it...I love you and I don’t want to lose you."

Blaise glanced back at everyone who was watching Aphrodite cry. Blaise led her away from the crowd and hugged her... "Aphie...you won’t lose me I promise."

"It’s just that you have a new bride and a new mother...I guess I’m jealous...you know me I have to be the center of everyone’s universe."

"You have always been the center of my universe Aphie but now I have others in there with you...you have always been a mother, sister, and best friend to me which that will never change...I just need you to share me with everyone else...can you?" Blaise asked as she looked into Aphrodite’s eyes.

"As long as you promise to always be a part of my life baby."

"That will never change...ever...I love you too much to not have you in my life." Blaise answered as she kissed Aphrodite’s lips softly.

"Aah..we’re a very close family." Cupid answered nervously to explain Blaise’s kiss.

"Evidently." Tarus replied with disbelief as everyone headed to the table for the dinner.

"You feel better?" Blaise asked as she wiped Aphrodite’s tears away.

"Yes...Blaise I would like to meet your mother." Aphrodite answered with a smile.

"Sure...that would be great...come on." Blaise answered with a smile as she held Aphrodite’s hand and led her to the table where Cyrene was seated... "mother, meet Aphrodite the Goddess of Love and my other mother."

Cyrene stood up and hugged Aphrodite... "thank you for taking care of my baby...you did a very good job with her and I’m grateful to you."

Aphrodite was shocked by the show of affection from Cyrene... "well...aah...Blaise always had goodness and love in her heart it just needed someone to bring that out...which I think she was born with passed on from you."

"Aphrodite...can you please tell me some things about Blaise as she grew up?"

Aphrodite smiled and sat down next to Cyrene... "well...there was the time that I tried to dress Blaise like me..."

Cupid began to laugh... "hey, Cuppie knock it off or I will tell what Aphie dressed you up as!" Blaise replied with embarrassment.

"Okay...even!" Cupid answered with a smile as he sat down at the table to join everyone.

Blaise sat next to Ephiny as the remainder of the crowd filled the hut for their joining meal.

"Aah...Blaise...did you forget to tell me something about your relationship with Aphrodite?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"Oh, I didn’t tell you about the wild orgie parties our family had at Olympus?" Blaise asked with seriousness.

"Blaise...you’re kidding right?"

"Would it have made a difference?"

"You could have told me what kind of family I was getting into." Ephiny answered as she noticed a mishcevious smile appear of Blaise’s face... "Blaise! you’re so bad...you had me going." Ephiny laughed.

"Where you getting excited at the thought of orgies’s?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"No..because I don’t like to share you sexually with anyone." Ephiny answered softly as she kissed Blaise’s cheek.

Blaise and Ephiny made eye contact... "Ephiny...you’re so beautiful...I’m sorry I didn’t tell you that earlier...I love you baby and you have made me so happy." Blaise smiled and kissed Ephiny softly. Ephiny put her hands on Blaise’s face and pulled her back for a longer kiss.

"I can’t imagine Blaise in pink Aphrodite!" Cyrene laughed as did Aphrodite.

Ephiny stopped kissing Blaise and opened her eyes to see Blaise’s look of shock at what her mother had just said... "pink?" Ephiny asked with a slight smile.

Blaise pulled away from Ephiny... "Aphrodite!" Blaise replied with agitation.

"I have a portrait of it...I will have to show it to you sometime."

"Cupid!!!" Blaise shouted as she stood up angry as everyone else laughed.

"I would love to see that!" Xena laughed.

"Me to!" Gabrielle answered with a laugh.

"Cupid! You where suppose to have kept that hidden!" Blaise shouted as she moved towards her brother... "I’m going to clip your wings dude!" Blaise shouted as she pointed at him.

"Aah....folks this was really lovely but I have to go." Cupid replied nervously as he stood up.

"Don’t you leave here!"

"Sorry...gotta go!" Cupid answered as he vanished.

"I’m going to kill him!" Blaise shouted as everyone laughed.

"Blaise I think you would look lovely in pink!" Xena replied with a hardy laugh.

"Ha..Ha..very funny!" Blaise answered with agitation in to Xena’s ear and stood up... "Aphrodite!"

Aphrodite smiled at Blaise and blew her a kiss... "Blaise honey...come here." Ephiny replied as she reached her hand out for Blaise’s. Blaise moved over to her and sat down... "you would look good in anything baby...why are you so mad?" Ephiny asked softly so no one else could hear their conversation.

"Because it’s embarrassing that the future God of War wore pink one time." Blaise answered with agitation.

"Well...I think you would look very sexy in pink." Ephiny answered with a smile as she kissed Blaise... "oh, I have something for you!...I was so flabbergasted when I received your wedding present that I forgot to send your present back with Tarus." Ephiny motioned to Eponon to bring the present.

She delivered a silver box and handed it to Blaise. Blaise opened the box to find a boot dagger with a handle in the form of a hawk with black onyx stones along the front of the blade. Blaise examined the dagger... "Ephiny...it’s beautiful and it’s just like your sword." Blaise answered with a smile.

"I’m glad you like it...look at the inside of the handle." Ephiny replied as she helped Blaise turn the dagger over which had their initials intertwined on each other’s.

"I love it baby...thank you!" Blaise smiled and leaned in for a kiss... "I think I’ll use it to clip Cuppie’s wings!" Blaise laughed... "your helm looks even more beautiful on you than I could have imagined baby."

"Blaise it’s so beautiful...I love it!...you took my breath away by giving it to me...do you want me to wear it always?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"That’s for you to decide baby...I can tell you that I like to see you without anything to obstruct your beautiful features but if you want to wear it all the time I won’t have a problem with that." Blaise answered with a smile.

"What if I wear it on special occasions and make it a family heirloom to be passed on to our daughter on her wedding day?"

"As long as she doesn’t marry a joker like me!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

"I can only hope she finds a wonderful person like you to fall in love with...then she would be a very happy woman." Ephiny answered and kissed Blaise.

"Okay...you two... time for your traditional dance." Gabrielle replied as the band began to play a slow song.

Blaise stood up and held her hand out for Ephiny to take. Ephiny held Blaise’s hand who helped her up and led her out onto the dance floor. Blaise looked into Ephiny’s eyes and pulled her into her arms... "shall we dance like we did the other night?" Blaise teased.

"How about tonight in our hut?" Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise passionately as the two danced to the slow rhythm of the music.

Ephiny put her head down on Blaise’s shoulder and sighed... "you okay baby?" Blaise asked.

"I thought of my parents and I wished they could be her to share in our happiness." Ephiny answered as she looked up at Blaise.

"They’re watching baby." Blaise answered with a smile and a kiss as she hugged her bride.

"Well...Xena...you can say it." Gabrielle replied with a smile.

"Say what?" Xena asked with confusion as she turned to Gabrielle.

"That I was right about them making a great couple!"

"Yes..dear...you where right!" Xena answered rolling her eyes at Gabrielle’s comment.

Gabrielle smiled and leaned to Xena to kiss her cheek... "I forgot to tell you that it’s tradition for the queen and her consort to dance with the joining partners."

"Oh, come on Gabrielle!...you know I don’t like to dance."

"It’s tradition honey...we have too or no one else can dance...I’ll make it worth your while." Gabrielle whispered in Xena’s ear as she placed a kiss on it.

"Oh, okay...you better make it up to me!" Xena answered with agitation as she took Gabrielle’s hand and led her to the dance floor to join Blaise and Ephiny.

Blaise and Ephiny finished with all of the traditional festivities such as cutting the cake and smashing it in each other’s faces, the opening of their joining gifts and decided it was time to start their night together as life partners.

Blaise and Ephiny stood waiting for Gabrielle to begin the kissing line with Xena following her.

"Ephiny...I wish you all the happiness in the world." Gabrielle replied as she kissed Ephiny and moved towards Blaise.

"Blaise...you deserve to be happy and I hope you have found it." Gabrielle kissed Blaise and stood next to her.

"Thanks Gabrielle..I have found it." Blaise answered with a smile.

Xena kissed Ephiny and moved to Blaise... "I’m very happy for you Blaise." Xena replied as she kissed Blaise then taking her place next to Gabrielle.

Cyrene kissed Ephiny... "thank you for making my baby so happy Ephiny."

"I should be thanking you mother for having such a wonderful daughter." Ephiny answered with a smile and a hug as Cyrene moved to Blaise.

"Blaise darling...I’m so proud of you." Cyrene smiled and put her hands on Blaise’s face..." she’s a wonderful woman honey." Cyrene replied as she kissed Blaise.

"She is and I intend to remind her just how wonderful she is everyday of my life mother."

"Ephiny...I’m glad Blaise has found someone worthy of her as yourself seeing as how she couldn’t have me!" Aphrodite replied with a laugh and kissed Ephiny... "if you two ever need my help don’t hesitate to ask because I will always be there for you." Aphrodite whispered to Ephiny.

"Thank you... we both appreciate it."

"Oh, sweetpea...this wouldn’t be so hard if Ephiny wasn’t such a wonderful person." Aphrodite whispered into Blaise’s ear as she kissed her cheek and took her place in the kissing line as family normally does.

Blaise looked over and saw Tarus kiss Ephiny... "hey, are you getting fresh with my bride brother?...because I think your lips where lingering on hers!" Blaise teased with a smile.

Tarus laughed and hugged Blaise..."I should be so lucky to have such a beautiful bride."

Tarus whispered as he kissed Blaise.

"Oh, Eponon!...did you meet my brother!" Blaise teased as she looked over at Eponon.

"Blaise!...don’t embarrass me." Tarus replied under his breath.

Blaise leaned to her brother... "just lay a good one on her when she passes...she’ll dig it bro!" Blaise whispered as she slapped her brother in the butt as he walked away shaking his head.

They where only half way through the crowd when Blaise leaned over to Ephiny... "normally I wouldn’t mind kissing all these women but I really want to be kissing just one certain bride right about now."

"Just save some kisses for me baby...we’re almost done."

Solari was the next to reach the participants in the line who all clasped hands with her instead of kisses. She approached Blaise and Ephiny... "I’m sorry for putting you both through everything that I did and I hope you can forgive me...I wish you good luck, health and happiness with your life together."

"Thank you Solari." Ephiny answered as she hugged Solari who moved to Blaise and received a stern hand clasp instead of a kiss.

"Okay....finally finished let’s get out of here!" Blaise replied with excitement... "thank you everyone but my bride and I have a date...hope to see you all in about a week when we venture out of our hut!" Blaise replied with a laugh which was shared by the group.

Blaise took Ephiny’s hand and led her out of the hut towards theirs... "wait!" Blaise stopped and looked at Ephiny.

"What Blaise?"

"We’re finally alone!" Blaise smiled and picked Ephiny up in her arms to carry her to their hut as they kissed along the way. Blaise kicked their door open and carried her bride across the threshold. They where both amazed by how their hut was decorated with beautiful red roses.

"I love you Blaise." Ephiny smiled and kissed Blaise passionately. Blaise carried Ephiny closer to their bed and began to loosen the straps on her Strophion. Blaise removed the straps to reveal Ephiny’s bare breasts. Blaise took them in her hands and caressed them as she kissed Ephiny deeply.

Blaise moved her kisses down to Ephiny’s breast taking one in her mouth as she caressed the other sucking Ephiny’s erect nipple. Ephiny ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair and untied her cape dropping it to the floor... "Blaise...you feel so good kissing me." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise moved back up and slid her tongue in Ephiny’s mouth for a deep, wet kiss as Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck. Blaise moved her hands down to Ephiny’s Zoma removing it to reveal the thong Ephiny wore underneath.

"I imagined that’s what you had on underneath that skirt of yours." Blaise whispered and moved her kisses down Ephiny’s’s body to her sex. Blaise knelt before her bride and kissed her center through her thong feeling Ephiny’s wetness through the material.

"Oh, Blaise." Ephiny moaned as Blaise slid her hands underneath the strap in the back and slid Ephiny’s thong off of her as she tasted Ephiny’s sex.

Blaise ran her hands back up Ephiny’s tone body and kissed her passionately. Ephiny untied the laces on the front of Blaise’s shirt and slid the shirt up over her head dropping it to the floor taking her lips away from Blaise’s momentarily to remove the shirt.

Ephiny ran her hands down Blaise’s muscular midsection to unlace her leather pants as she kissed Blaise’s bare muscular chest. Blaise slid her boots off as Ephiny pushed her pants to the floor allowing Blaise to step out of them standing before her bride naked. Blaise moved behind Ephiny and wrapped her arms around her body. Blaise kissed Ephiny’s neck as she ran her hands softly across Ephiny’s body as Ephiny tilted her head allowing her lover to kiss her lips.

Blaise slid her tongue into Ephiny’s mouth as she leaned down and picked Ephiny up in her arms without interrupting their kiss. Blaise carried her to the bed and laid on her back placing Ephiny on top of her.

Blaise ran her hands down Ephiny’s back to her leg to spread her open so, she could feel Ephiny’s wetness on her leg... "baby, you feel so good on me." Blaise moaned... "rub your wetness on me." Blaise replied seductively.

Ephiny moved her hips up and down slowly against Blaise’s leg growing wetter with every movement. Ephiny placed bites followed by light kisses on Blaise’s neck as she moved faster against Blaise’s leg.

"Blaise...touch me." Ephiny whispered in Blaise’s ear.

Blaise slid her hand under Ephiny and entered her finger inside of Ephiny’s wet opening... "ow." Ephiny replied with a wince.

"I’m sorry baby...I’ll be more gentle." Blaise replied softly as she kissed Ephiny and slowly slid her finger into Ephiny... "you’re so tight baby." Blaise moaned.

"How many fingers do you have in me Blaise?...because it’s a little painful."

"I only have one inside of you baby...I’m sorry I’ll take it out if you want." Blaise whispered.

"No...it should be alright...I don’t know what’s going on I feel like a virgin." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise on the cheek.

"Well....tonight is our first night as partners so, you could say we are both virgins baby." Blaise smiled.

Ephiny smiled back at her bride and kissed her neck as she began to move her hips to Blaise’s movement in and out of her opening... "you okay?" Blaise asked softly.

"Yes...you feel so good inside of me baby." Ephiny answered as she began to suck Blaise’s neck and picked up her pace moving her hips against Blaise’s finger.

Ummmm...you feel so good sucking my neck baby...it’s such a turn on...touch me and feel hot wet I am." Blaise whispered as Ephiny slid her hand between Blaise’s legs to feel her wetness.

"Oh, baby you feel so good." Ephiny moaned as she continued to suck Blaise’s neck and she picked up her pace rubbing Blaise’s clit much to her delight.

Ephiny began to thrust her hips faster against Blaise..."oh, Blaise...aah...baby." Ephiny moaned as she leaned her head back in pleasure.

"Let it go with me baby...come on...let me have it." Blaise whispered as she moved her finger in and out of Ephiny’s opening faster.

"Ooh, Blaise...aah!...yes!" Ephiny moaned loudly as Blaise felt Ephiny’s release on her hand and leg.

Ephiny laid down on Blaise and bit her neck causing Blaise to release her orgasm... "oh, Eph!" Blaise shouted with her climax.

Blaise moved her hand from Ephiny’s sex and wrapped her arms around her glistening naked body holding her tightly... "I love you baby." Blaise replied softly as she moved Ephiny’s long hair off her forehead and kissed her.

Ephiny picked her head up from Blaise’s chest and looked into her sexy blue eyes... "I love you so much Blaise...you make me feel so wonderful." Ephiny answered with a smile and kissed Blaise passionately... "let me see your neck baby...I may have gotten a little over zealous." Ephiny smiled as she examined Blaise’s neck... "oh, baby...you are going to have a nice mark on your neck for awhile...I’m sorry." Ephiny answered with a sheepish grin.

"Don’t be sorry because it felt wonderful honey." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny softly on the lips before Ephiny laid her head down on Blaise’s chest. Ephiny ran her hand up into Blaise’s hair resting it there and kissed Blaise’s chest softly.

Blaise stroked Ephiny’s long curly blond hair and kissed the top of her head... "baby, you have made me so happy...I love you so much." Blaise replied as she kissed her bride again. Blaise got no response from Ephiny... "Eph." Blaise asked as she leaned her head to see Ephiny’s face to find she was fast asleep... "sleep well my love." Blaise whispered with a smile as she closed her eyes and fell asleep.

Blaise woke to find Ephiny laying on her back beside her peacefully. Blaise propped herself up on one elbow to watch her beautiful wife sleep. Blaise took a rose out of the vase near the bed and smelled the scent of the flower. She ran the rose softly down Ephiny’s body over her breast watching her nipple become erect and continued the descent down her body.

Blaise stopped what she was doing... "what are you doing here father!" Blaise asked softly with anger to not wake Ephiny.

Ares walked around to face Blaise... "you’ve got a hot one there Blaise." Ares answered with cockiness as he gazed at Ephiny’s naked body.

Blaise grabbed the sheet to cover Ephiny... "you have no right to look at my wife...turn your head!" Blaise answered with anger.

"You’re right Blaise." Ares answered as he turned his head... "but you’ve done well for yourself." Ares answered with a sly grin.

Blaise climbed out of bed and moved to her father... "what do you want!" Blaise snapped quietly.

"I’m just here to remind you of our deal." Ares replied sarcastically.

"How could I forget it father?" Blaise answered as she moved in front of Ares.

"Ooh, too bad you’re my daughter...you aren’t a little girl anymore." Ares answered with a smile on his face.

Blaise grabbed him by the throat... "you pig!...leave!" Blaise answered with agitation as she glanced at Ephiny to make sure she was still sleeping.

"Okay...Blaise...I’m leaving let me go." Ares replied through a choke from Blaise squeezing his throat.

Blaise let her father go and moved over to sit in front of Ephiny on the floor as her father moved to the opposite side of the bed from Blaise.

"Don’t forget our deal...because I intend for you to pay up soon." Ares answered with a smirk as Ephiny began to stir.

Blaise gave her father a hateful look and Ares blew Blaise a kiss with a smile as he vanished from their hut.

Ephiny opened her eyes to see Blaise sitting on the floor before her... "honey, what are you doing?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"Just loving you is all." Blaise answered with a smile as she leaned in to kiss Ephiny.

"Come to bed and love me instead of doing it from the floor."

"I thought you’d never ask darlin." Blaise answered with a grin as she climbed back in bed and Ephiny cuddled up in her wife’s strong arms as they both fell back to sleep.

Blaise woke to the sound of Ephiny being sick and climbed out of bed to check on her wife... "Baby...are you okay?" Blaise asked with concern as she knelt beside Ephiny and handed her a small hand towel.

"It’s okay Blaise...I’ll be fine...could you get me some water please?" Ephiny asked trying to catch her breath.

"Sure...I’ll be right back." Blaise answered as she went to pour a mug of water for Ephiny and brought it back to her... "Here honey." Blaise offered as she handed her the mug and brushed Ephiny’s hair lovingly away from her face as Ephiny drank the water. Blaise looked into her eyes with concern for her pale looking wife as Ephiny finished the water... "You okay?"

"Yeah...I feel a little better...thanks...I don’t know why I’ve been so sick lately Blaise." Ephiny answered as she took in some deep breaths to calm her nausea.

"Do you think it’s the after effects from when you where hit in the head?"

"I don’t think so Blaise...that was almost a moon ago...it’s probably just the stomach flu." Ephiny answered as Blaise helped her up.

"Hey...can you believe we have been joined for over a moon now?" Blaise asked with a smile... "You aren’t sick from being with me for so long are you?"

"I’ve loved every minute of it." Ephiny answered with a smile... "I need to empty out this bucket because it stinks! I’ll be right back Blaise."

"You’ll do no such thing Ephiny...you sit down and rest." Blaise demanded as she pointed to the chair... "I’ll take care of that...remember for better or worse." Blaise answered with a smile as she kissed Ephiny on the forehead and helped her to the chair.

"You’re so sweet to me Blaise...thank you." Ephiny smiled as she sat down.

"It’s only because I love you so much." Blaise answered as she slipped on her black boxer shorts and a shirt. Blaise picked up the bucket and left the hut to empty it.

Blaise emptied and cleaned the bucket leaving it by the hut to dry as she headed towards the food hut. Blaise grabbed some bread for Ephiny to calm her stomach and returned to their hut.

"Try some bread honey and see if that’ll help." Blaise offered as she handed Ephiny the bread.

"Thanks honey...but I’m feeling better." Ephiny answered as she excepted the bread.

"I’m going down to the lake for a swim are you going to be okay or do you need me to stay?" Blaise asked with concern.

"No...I’m fine...go ahead." Ephiny reassured Blaise.

Blaise moved over to Ephiny and moved her hair back... "Are you sure?"

"Yes...I’ll be fine." Ephiny answered as she put her hand on Blaise’s arm and patted it for reassurance.

"Maybe we should have the healer take a look at you."

"I will if it gets worse...don’t worry baby it’s just the stomach flu." Ephiny smiled to reassure her lover.

"I’ll be back shortly okay?" Blaise answered as she leaned down and kissed Ephiny... "Bye honey."

"Bye." Ephiny answered with a smile as she ran her hand softly down Blaise’s face. 

Blaise left the hut and headed towards the lake seeing Xena approach on her way... "Good morning Xena!" Blaise replied as she stopped to speak with Xena.

"Hey Blaise! What's up?"

"I’m going for a swim want to join me?"

"Ah...I don’t know Blaise." Xena answered hesitantly.

"What gives?" Blaise asked with a smile... "Does she have you too whipped warrior princess?" Blaise laughed.

"No...No." Xena answered feeling uncomfortable by the question.

"Come on...we can catch some fish too." Blaise answered as she hit Xena on the arm and started to walk off.

"Okay...you’re on but the last one to the lake has to clean them!" Xena answered with a laugh as she took off running towards the lake.

Blaise laughed and began to run after her... "You don’t really think you can beat me old lady do you?" Blaise teased.

"Age and wisdom wins out over youth any day!" Xena answered as Blaise caught up with her.

"What was that you said?" Blaise asked teasingly as Xena gave Blaise a shove knocking her into the bush and made it to the lake first.

Xena stripped off her armour and jumped into the lake as Blaise pulled herself up out of the bushes laughing. Blaise ran up after Xena jumped in the lake.

"You cheater!" Blaise laughed as she stripped her shirt off and jumped in the lake.

Blaise dove underwater and grabbed Xena picking her up out of the water.

"Blaise...put me down!" Xena laughed.

"Okay!" Blaise answered as she threw Xena into the water.

"Oh, isn’t that sweet!"

Blaise turned around to find Ares standing on shore... "Xena...look it’s dear ol’ daddy!"

"This touches me so much to see my two girls playing." Ares answered sarcastically as he pretended to wipe a tear away from his face.

Xena and Blaise looked at each other, smiled and dove underwater.

"Very funny!" Ares replied.

They both exited the water with fish in their hands and threw them at Ares. Ares stumbled and fell as he tried to swat the fish away. Blaise and Xena laughed as they exited the lake. Blaise went over and held her hand out to help her father up.

"You two think you’re so funny don’t you?" Ares asked with a sneer.

"Well." Blaise answered as she looked at Xena... "Yeah, that was pretty funny." They both laughed hysterically and noticed Ares didn’t find the humor in it at all... "Oh, come on daddy lighten up!" Blaise replied as she swatted him in the arm.

"Ha...ha." Ares replied with a strained grin... "Blaise I need to speak with you."

"You just had to ruin the fun didn’t you?" Blaise asked with disgust.

"Blaise...I’ll catch you later...Ares remember you are to obey Zeus’ wishes when it comes to Blaise...no manipulation got it?" Xena replied tersely as she pointed at him.

"Or what?" Ares asked sarcastically.

"Or you will have Zeus and myself to deal with." Xena answered as she headed back to the village.

"What gives daddy?" Blaise asked with sarcasm.

"I need you to go to Troy for the war going on there for me."

"When?" Blaise asked with disgust knowing she really wasn’t going to like the answer.

"Right away."

"Can’t you give me more notice than that? Ephiny’s sick and I don’t know if I can leave her now."

"Look Blaise...I will try in the future to give you better warning but I need you there right away."

"Alright!." Blaise answered with agitation... "Why don’t you just get me there and back quick?"

"I need you to lead one of my armies to Troy...here is the map where the army is located...I am heading farther away to gather the other armies." Ares explained as he handed her the map.

"Okay...I’m on my way!" Blaise answered with agitation as she headed back to the village to pack trying to figure out the best way to break the news to Ephiny.

Ephiny was finishing up some paperwork as Blaise entered the hut.

"Are you feeling better?" Blaise asked, as she was not able to make eye contact with her bride.

"Yes...the bread helped...how was your swim?" Ephiny asked with a smile as she noticed Blaise was lost in other thoughts... "What's wrong Blaise?" Ephiny asked with concern as she moved closer to Blaise.

"Ares showed up at the lake." Blaise answered with regret as she lowered her head.

"What did he want?" Ephiny asked with anger as she moved in front of Blaise and put her finger under Blaise’s chin lifting her head up.

"Sit down Eph." Blaise asked as Ephiny sat in the chair and Blaise knelt before her.

Ephiny knew by the look in Blaise’s eyes that the encounter wasn’t good but then again when is an encounter with Ares good? She thought to herself.

"He has some duties for me to take care of for him." Blaise explained as she put both hands on Ephiny’s forearms.

"Oh, Blaise!" Ephiny answered with disappointment.

"I know honey." Blaise answered as she held her hands... "I have to do it...it’s the deal I made for the ambrosia...I don’t want to leave you while you’re sick." Blaise answered as she kissed her hands.

"How long will you be gone?"

"Hopefully, not for long...I will have Xena and Gabrielle look after you to make sure you make it to the healer to be checked out." Blaise explained with concern for her sick wife.

"Okay...I’ll go and get checked...I’m going to miss you Blaise." Ephiny answered as sadness overwhelmed her and Ephiny began to cry.

"Hey...please don’t cry." Blaise answered as she held her in her arms... "You know I hate to see you cry." Blaise kissed Ephiny on the cheek and looked into her eyes.

"I can’t help it Blaise...this will be the first time we are apart since we joined and I’m going to miss you."

Blaise pushed Ephiny’s blond curls off her face... "I’m going to miss you too baby...just remember how much I love you okay?" Blaise lightly ran her finger over Ephiny’s bottom lip and softly kissed her lips... "It’s going to be so hard being without you baby." Blaise answered as she gazed into Ephiny’s eyes.

Blaise took Ephiny’s hand and moved over to gather Blaise’s clothes to pack in her saddlebags. They finished packing and Blaise got dressed.

"Well...it’s time honey." Blaise replied with regret as she turned to Ephiny.

Ephiny leaned into Blaise and kissed her passionately. Ephiny threw her arms around Blaise to hold her tight.

"You sure are making it tough for me to leave baby." Blaise replied as she put her forehead against Ephiny’s.

"I was trying to do that to keep you here with me!"

"You’re very bad Ephiny." Blaise answered with a smile... "I wish I didn’t have to go but I have to...I would rather have to do this than to never be able to hold you again my love." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny softly.

"No singing to any women while you’re gone." Ephiny replied smiling through her tears.

"Only you." Blaise answered softly as she kissed and hugged her wife setting to memory the lovely scent of Ephiny.

"Goodbye Blaise." Ephiny answered as they broke their hug.

"Never goodbye Ephiny...it’s always I’ll see you soon." Blaise answered with a smile to reassure her partner.

"You got it...I’ll see you soon then." Ephiny smiled to reassure Blaise that everything would be okay even though she was consumed by too much sadness. Ephiny pulled Blaise’s hand towards her to place a kiss on her lips.

Blaise broke the kiss and smiled as she turned to leave their hut. Ephiny held Blaise’s hand as long as she could until Blaise exited the hut. Ephiny stood in the doorway with tears falling down her face as she watched her warrior head towards Taz.

Blaise put her saddlebags on Taz as Xena and Gabrielle approached... "Hey, be careful little sister!" Xena replied as she hugged Blaise.

"Who me? Always." Blaise answered sarcastically... "Watch out for Ephiny for me please?"

"You know I will Blaise." Xena answered as she broke their hug.

"Gabrielle...can you do me a favor and make sure Ephiny is seen by the healer? She has been sick lately and I would like to have her checked out." Blaise asked with concern.

"I’ll make sure she sees the healer Blaise." Gabrielle answered as she hugged Blaise... "Be safe!" Gabrielle answered as Blaise broke their hug and smiled as she looked into Gabrielle’s green eyes.

Blaise mounted Taz and looked to Ephiny standing in the doorway of their hut. Blaise heeled Taz towards Ephiny and turned him around as she winked to Ephiny. Ephiny blew Blaise a kiss as she rode out of the village.

Blaise rode Taz hard for half the day to reach the army she was to meet. Blaise noticed a man was being beaten by three soldiers along the path. Blaise heeled Taz to gallop faster and maneuvered Taz up to the group. Blaise kicked one man in the face sending him on his backside.

"Hey!...I can win the fight...I’m Joxer the mighty!" the man groggily replied as he fell to the ground.

Blaise steered Taz around to bump the other guy knocking him away and pulled her sword out. Blaise put her sword against the third man’s throat.

"What’s the meaning of this?" Blaise asked with anger.

"We were just having fun."

"The fun is over!" Blaise slid off Taz in front of the guy... "I see by your armor you pledge allegiance to my father Ares."

"You’re Blaise?" the man asked nervously.

"Yes...I am." Blaise answered sternly.

"Please forgive us my lord!" the man answered as he knelt before her.

"Stand and help my friend up." Blaise demanded.

"He’s your friend?" he asked nervously as he helped Joxer to his feet... "We had no idea...we’re sorry."

"I’m sure you didn’t...get back to camp!" Blaise ordered with a low tone in her voice.

"You’re my friend?" Joxer asked with a grin as he wiped the blood from his mouth.

"Any friend of my sister’s and my sister-in-law is a friend of mine." Blaise answered as she re-sheathed her sword.

"Who’s your sister?"

"Xena is my sister."

"Oh, yeah." Joxer laughed playing it off like he knew all along... "Well Xena and Gabrielle are like this with me." Joxer answered as he crossed his fingers... "We are best friends."

"Sure you are! Listen, are you interested in a job?" Blaise asked as she tightened the cinch on Taz’s saddle.

"As a warrior?...sure I’m Joxer the mighty a fierce warrior!"

"Easy killer...I need an assistant...are you interested?" Blaise asked

"Assistant to the future God of War?" Joxer exclaimed with excitement... "Yeah, what do I have to do?" he asked with a silly grin.

"First off lose that silly looking armour." Joxer took his armour off instantly... "Make sure my messages make it to who they are intended for or you will have to deal with my wrath!" Blaise explained.

"Messenger!...I don’t know about that...I’m a mighty warrior you know?" Joxer answered with slight agitation at the offer.

"You will get to see Gabrielle quite frequently." Blaise answered as she moved her eyebrows up and down with a smile.

"Okay...I’ll do it!" Joxer replied quickly at the thought of seeing Gabrielle.

Blaise mounted Taz... "hop on then." Blaise answered as she put her hand out and helped him on the horse. The two rode off into camp.

Blaise entered the general’s tent with Joxer following close behind... "General!" Blaise replied as she moved over to shake his hand.

"My lord...welcome...I’m general Calvin." the man exclaimed as he clasped hands with Blaise and bowed.

"Look dump the lord bit...just call me Blaise okay?" Blaise answered feeling uneasy at her title the general gave her.

"Sure." General Calvin answered.

"This man is my personal assistant." Blaise explained as she motioned over her shoulder to Joxer... "See to it that he is given a medallion with our emblem for safe passage please." Blaise ordered.

"It is done." the general answered as he snapped his fingers towards his sergeant to follow out the orders quickly.

"We will move out at dawn general...where are my quarters?" Blaise asked matter of factly.

"My lieutenant will show you as I prepare the troops for our departure." the general bowed as Blaise left the tent for her quarters.

"Joxer!" Blaise yelled.

Joxer ran into the tent, tripped and fell... "Sorry!" Joxer replied with a grin as he stood up.

"I have a job for you to do."

"Anything...I’m ready." Joxer answered as he shifted his sword in its scabbard.

"I want you to deliver this message along with two dozen of the freshest red roses you can find to my wife Ephiny at the amazon village." Blaise explained as she handed him a scroll.

"Ephiny’s your wife?" Joxer asked with excitement.

"Yes...she is...here’s one hundred dinars for your expenses on the trips you’ll be making for me." Blaise explained as she handed him a sack of dinars... "You have the medallion so, you shouldn’t be harmed...this is important to me and I hope you take your job seriously." Blaise answered with trepidation that Joxer could get the job done.

"Oh, you can count on me Blaise...I’m the man for the job."

"Let’s go get you a horse then." Blaise answered as she left her tent.

  "A horse?" Joxer replied nervously as he followed Blaise... "They don’t like me very much."

Blaise and Joxer walked over to the area where the horses were being held..."Sergeant!" Blaise shouted.

"Yes!" the soldier answered as he stood at attention.

"I need a horse for my assistant." Blaise informed the soldier.

"I’ll bring him the fastest." the man answered as he began to follow his orders.

Joxers eyes grew wider and he gulped nervously.

Blaise leaned over to the soldier and whispered in his ear... "Make it a fast one but somewhat gentle...he’s not the most experienced rider."

"I see...I know just the horse for him." the soldier answered as he went off to fetch the horse.

"Okay Joxer...you’re all set...here is a map where we will be tomorrow evening and I expect you there...don’t forget the flowers...got it?"

"Yeah...you can count on me...aah...Blaise." Joxer’s voice became serious... "Thank you for giving me this opportunity...I really appreciate it." Joxer answered as he extended his arm and Blaise clasped hands with him.

"No prob Jox...just don’t let me down okay?...there’s your horse now get going." Blaise answered as she pointed to the horse.

Joxer approached the horse... "Nice horsey." Joxer replied as he mounted the horse and rode off slowly.

Blaise returned to her tent to attend to duties of moving the army out the next morning. Blaise finished up her duties and ate dinner then headed off to check on Taz.

"How you doing my friend?" Blaise asked as she began to brush him.

Taz lowered his head as Blaise rubbed his head behind his ears... "Miss Argo do you?" Blaise asked with a smile as Taz nodded yes... "I know the feeling buddy...I miss Eph more than I could ever have imagined." Blaise answered with sadness. Blaise finished brushing Taz and gave him a pat... "I’ll see you in the morning my friend." Blaise replied as Taz whinnied and nodded yes.

Blaise went back to her tent to get ready for bed despite the fact that she knew she wasn’t getting any sleep this evening because she missed Ephiny so much. Blaise opened her saddlebags for a nightshirt to wear and thought about how strange it was going to be to wear clothes to bed.

Blaise pulled out a black sheer slinky negligee nightie... "What in Tartarus?" Blaise replied as she unfolded it and held it up to look at it as she smiled when she realized it was Ephiny’s. Blaise laughed as she thought about how Ephiny was able to get that in her saddlebags without her knowing it.

Blaise brought the lingerie up to her face and smelled the material, which had a lingering scent of Ephiny’s sweet perfume. Blaise noticed a note was lying in her bag and picked it up to read.

Blaise...I wanted you to have something to remind you of me. I miss you so much already baby. Please be careful and I will think of you every minute until your return.

I love you,

Eph

Blaise sat on the bed and put her elbows on her knees leaning forward. She put her chin in her hands and smelled the garment. She closed her eyes and thought about her sweet, beautiful wife that she missed very much... "This is going to be very hard" she thought as she laid back on the bed and fell asleep to dream about her love.

Blaise slept for a short time and decided to get up because she was over the tossing and turning she had done for the majority of the night. Blaise gathered her belongings and readied Taz for the days journey. After Blaise got Taz squared away she headed off for some breakfast.

"Good morning my lord...sorry... Blaise."

"Good morning General Calvin." Blaise answered with a slight smile from the general’s stammering with the lord bit.

"Please...if I am not to call you lord then call me Calvin." the man smiled.

"Okay...Calvin it is then."

"Did you sleep well?"

"No...I didn’t." Blaise answered as she sat down to eat.

"Are your accommodations not suitable?" Calvin asked nervously.

"No...No...Sorry...they where fine...I’m worried about my wife and it was our first night apart since our joining." Blaise answered as she looked of in the distance as her thoughts turned to Ephiny.

"I know the feeling all too well...but it gets easier with time." Calvin answered reassuringly.

Blaise looked up at him before taking a bite of eggs... "Let's hope so." Blaise answered with a slight smile. They finished their breakfast and assembled the army as Blaise and General Calvin led the army out of the camp towards Troy.

Joxer arrived at the amazon village around mid morning and dismounted his horse which he had affectionately named Twister for the wild ride he had given Joxer.

"Excuse me...where can I find Ephiny?" Joxer asked an amazon politely.

"She’s in the food hut having breakfast." the amazon answered hesitantly to the stranger's question.

"Perfect!." Joxer replied with excitement and a smile on his face... "I need these flowers to be put in her hut and could you please tell her there is a surprise waiting for her?"

"I would if I knew who you are and what you wanted with my regent." the amazon asked with agitation.

"Oh, sorry...duh...I’m Joxer and I am Blaise’s assistant...I have been sent here by her to deliver a message to Ephiny." Joxer explained as he held his medallion up showing he was legit.

"The medallion means nothing to me except that you have an allegiance to the God of War, and seeing as how he is Blaise’s father I will deliver the message to my regent. Besides you look harmless to be any threat to us...that is her hut over there," the amazon pointed and headed off to deliver the message to Ephiny.

Joxer arranged the flowers in Ephiny’s hut as he waited for her arrival. Ephiny ran in the door... "Blaise!" she shouted with excitement.

"No...Sorry...it’s Joxer." Joxer answered as he turned to face Ephiny.

"Joxer?" Ephiny asked confused and with disappointment... "I thought you where Blaise when I heard there was a surprise waiting for me...what are you doing here?"

"I’m Blaises assistant now and she sent me to deliver this message and these flowers." Joxer explained as he handed her the scroll and pointed to the flowers.

"Oh." Ephiny smiled... "They're beautiful." Ephiny answered as a warm feeling fell over her from Blaise’s thoughtfulness as she approached the flowers and smelled their fragrant scent.

"I’ll leave you alone and go say hello to Gabrielle and Xena...I’ll wait for your response and then I must head back okay?"

"Sure." Ephiny answered as she opened the scroll as Joxer exited the hut.

Eph...my love...I missed you the moment I let go of your hand. I hope you’re feeling better because I worry about you so. I’m thinking of you constantly and I love you very much.

Blaise

Ephiny began to cry and smelled her roses again as she sat down to write a reply note.

Joxer found Gabrielle and Xena leaving the food hut... "Gabrielle! Xena!" he shouted as he ran up to the pair.

"Joxer?" Gabrielle replied with surprise to see him.

"Joxer what are you doing here?" Xena asked as he approached.

"Hi Gabby!" he replied with excitement and out of breath from running as he hugged her.

"Hey, Joxer...okay you can let go now." Gabrielle answered with a feeling of uncomfortableness from the hug.

"Oh, sorry." Joxer answered nervously as he broke his hug... "Hey Xena!" he replied as he opened his arms to hug her.

"Don’t even think about it." Xena answered sternly as she held up her hand to stop Joxer from hugging her and then extended her hand... "A handshake will do." Xena smiled and clasped hands with him.

"Guess who I work for?" Joxer asked with pride.

"You have a job?" Xena asked with a chuckle.

"I work for your sister Xena...I’m her assistant."

"No way!" Gabrielle answered with disbelief.

"Way...it’s true ask Ephiny." Joxer nodded with a smile.

"What are your job duties?" Xena asked.

"I’m a messenger for Blaise and I just delivered a message to Ephiny from her." he answered with a smile and pride at the job he had done.

"Is Blaise okay?" Xena asked with worry.

"Oh, yeah...she’s fine...she was moving the army out this morning...I have to go now because I have to meet them by this evening."

"Tell Blaise we said hello and we miss her." Gabrielle asked.

"I will...bye Gabby." Joxer replied with an embarrassed giggle... "Bye Xena." Joxer replied as he ran over to Ephiny’s hut and knocked.

"Unbelievable!" Xena replied with a laugh as she shook her head.

"I hardly recognized him without his armor...I thought it was Jett at first." Gabrielle chuckled.

"What are your plans baby?" Xena asked with a sexy smile.

"I have a ton of work to go over how about you?"

"I’m training some rookie guards on how to protect their queen properly." Xena answered with a smile.

"Then I won’t have anything to worry about again then." Gabrielle answered with a smile..."I’ll see you for dinner then?"

"How about dinner in my bedroll or yours?" Xena asked with a smile as she pulled Gabrielle into her arms.

"My hot tub!" Gabrielle whispered in her ear as she bit and sucked Xena’s neck before turning and walking away.

"Wow!" Xena smiled as her body was overcome with warmth... "You little tease!"

Gabrielle turned around and blew Xena a kiss. Xena could only smile as she watched her wife enter her royal office.

"Come in Joxer!" Ephiny announced.

"Are you all set Ephiny?" Joxer asked as he entered the hut.

"Here...I want you to take this back to Blaise." Ephiny answered as she handed Joxer a scroll and a box... "be careful with the box okay Joxer?"

"Why does everyone tell me to be careful with everything?" Joxer asked with confusion.

"Because we know you Joxer." Ephiny answered with a smile and a pat on the back... "Thank you."

"Bye." Joxer answered as he left the hut and rode off on Twister.

"Now that’s unfreaking believable that Joxer is able to ride a horse!" Xena exclaimed out loud to no one in particular as she watched in disbelief as Joxer rode out of the village.

Xena stopped by Ephiny’s hut and knocked before entering... "Come on in!" Ephiny answered.

"Is everything okay with Blaise?"

"Yes...she misses me." Ephiny answered with a big smile... "Look at the beautiful flowers she sent me." Ephiny replied as she pointed to the roses.

"They’re very nice Ephiny." Xena answered as she looked the flowers over.

"I can’t believe she trusts Joxer enough to hire him on as an assistant though."

"I thought the same thing about him Eph." Xena answered and noticed the smile on Ephiny’s face had disappeared... "What's wrong?" Xena asked with concern.

"Aah...it’s just the way you said my name Xena...Blaise calls me that and you sounded so much like her just then...it just brought sadness to me and made me miss her more."

"I didn’t know...I’m sorry...listen it will get a little easier with each day Ephiny." Xena replied reassuringly.

"I hope so." Ephiny answered with a slight smile as she looked up at Xena.

"Well...I have to go and teach the rookie guards a few things about protection." Xena replied with a smile.

"Work them hard would you?" Ephiny answered with a sly grin.

"I will just for you...later." Xena smiled and left the hut.

Joxer made it to the location on the map to meet the rest of the troops late that night. Joxer announced he was present outside Blaise’s tent.

"Come on in Joxer!" Blaise yelled.

Joxer entered to find Blaise doing push-ups in her black boxer shorts and sports bra.

"Oh, sorry!" Joxer replied nervously as he covered his eyes.

"Cut it out dude… I’m sure you have seen more before." Blaise answered as she stood up.

"Well...yeah." Joxer answered gloating as he took his hand down and giggled.

"How does Ephiny look?"

"Very beautiful...aah...if you don’t mind me saying so!" Joxer asked nervously.

"No...Not at all."Blaise answered with a smile as she thought of Ephiny.

"She wanted me to give you these...she did look sad though Blaise." Joxer replied as he handed her the scroll and the box Ephiny had instructed him to be careful with.

"She does?" Blaise asked with concern.

"I think it’s because she misses you."

"Yeah...I miss her too Jox...dude I never realized I could love someone as much as I do her...I feel the same pain being away from her that I felt when I grew up away from my family." Blaise explained with her head down as she ran her thumb over the scroll trying to feel Ephiny’s touch along the parchment.

"It should be easier Blaise...I’m here if you need someone to talk too."

"Hey Jox!...thanks man...you did a good job today...go get some sleep we’re moving out early." Blaise answered as she looked up at her new friend.

"Thanks Blaise...you can count on me!" Joxer answered with excitement as he exited the tent.

Blaise opened the box, which contained a single red rose. Blaise moved it up to her face to smell it’s fragrance. Blaise smiled as she smelled the rose and opened the scroll to read it.

My darling Blaise...I miss you more than you could ever possibly imagine. I think of you every moment of the day and I hope you are safe. I have placed a kiss on the rose only for you my love. Thank you for my flowers they are beautiful as you are. I long for you to hold me in your arms and to feel your gentle kiss on my lips. I love you whole heartedly my darling.

Eph

Blaise laid down on the bed and closed her eyes envisioning Ephiny as she ran the rose along her lips slowly and softly imagining Ephiny’s lips kissing hers. Blaise fell asleep lost in her thoughts of Ephiny, still clutching her scroll and rose in each hand.

"Ephiny...Ephiny!" Gabrielle replied... "Are you okay?...did you hear me?"

"I...I’m sorry Gabrielle...I have a lot on my mind...what did you ask?" Ephiny stammered.

"You do remember we have the council meeting today?...what’s wrong?" Gabrielle asked with concern.

"I’m worried about Blaise and something else." Ephiny answered as her thought trailed off... "aah...I haven’t heard anything from her in three weeks...I didn’t realize I would ever to be so happy to see Joxer but now I look forward to seeing him."

"It’s strange to look forward to Joxer coming here." Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"He has actually done a very good job which is surprising...I just hope everything is okay with Blaise." Ephiny answered with worry.

"Ephiny...do you feel in your heart there is something wrong with Blaise?" Gabrielle asked as she held her hand for comfort.

Ephiny looked down and tears welled in her eyes... " I do feel like she’s injured or sick or something Gabrielle."

"Ephiny...there is no way Aphrodite or Ares for that fact would allow anything to happen to Blaise."

"I can’t help what I feel Gabrielle but I’m sure you’re right. Ares wouldn’t allow anything to happen to his protégé as long as it benefits him... I wish Blaise would never have had to of made that deal with him...then she would be here when I need her most of all." Ephiny answered as she began to cry.

"I’m sorry Ephiny...it’s my fault that she had to make that deal...I should have never interfered in Blaise trying to protect you."

"Yeah...well...what’s done is done I guess and Blaise would have had to do this one day but I just wish it wasn’t now." Ephiny answered with regret as she lowered her head.

"Is there something you aren’t telling me Ephiny?"

"My queen...excuse the intrusion but you said to inform you the moment the council was assembled." a guard replied.

"Yes...thank you." Gabrielle answered with a smile and turned to Ephiny... "is there something else you need to tell me?"

"No...Gabrielle...we need to get going so we don’t keep the council waiting."

"Are you sure?"

"Yeah...let’s go." Ephiny answered as she stood up to follow Gabrielle out.

They entered the royal meeting chamber where the council was assembled and took their seats. After two candle marks the council members made no progress except towards more frustration.

Joxer entered the chamber and stood beside Ephiny who looked up at him... "you should read this right away." Joxer replied in a serious tone as he handed her a scroll.

"Joxer...is Blaise okay? You’re scaring me." Ephiny asked with concern.

"Just read the scroll it will explain everything." Joxer answered as he lowered his head down looking at the floor.

Ephiny’s heart sank and tears filled her eyes, as she was afraid to open the scroll. She looked at Gabrielle who moved next to her and put her arm around her for comfort. Ephiny looked as her tears fell down her face... "Go ahead open it." Gabrielle answered reassuringly.

Ephiny began to cry as she opened the scroll. Ephiny hesitated before opening the rest of the scroll and took in a deep breath trying to calm herself. Once calmed she opened the scroll to a sigh of relief as she read the scroll.

Roses are red

Violets are blue

I’m really not a poet

But I’m standing behind you

Blaise

Ephiny turned around quickly and stood up as she saw Blaise standing in the doorway behind her. She pushed past Joxer and ran into Blaise’s waiting arms.

"Hey baby!" Blaise replied as she hugged her wife tightly.

"Blaise...are you okay?...why did you scare me like that!" Ephiny asked with tears in her eyes and hit Blaise’s shoulder.

"I guess Joxer got a little melodramatic...I’m sorry...I just wanted to surprise you...but I’m okay now that you’re in my arms." Blaise answered softly as she kissed Ephiny lifting her off the ground in her muscular arms for a deep sensuous kiss.

"Let’s take a break for about ten minutes and maybe we can come back with clearer heads to resolve the matters at hand." Gabrielle ordered as the council left the chamber out the rear exit.

"Hi Gabby!" Joxer replied with a silly smile.

"Hey Joxer." Gabrielle answered as she moved Joxer out of ear shot of Blaise and Ephiny... "is everything okay with Blaise she looks very haggard and Ephiny has been very worried about her." Gabrielle asked as they glanced over at Blaise who continued hugging Ephiny.

"Well...she’s been very worried about Ephiny and she misses her very much Gabby...she sleeps maybe one to two candle marks a night and is just wearing herself thin." Joxer answered with concern for his friend.

"That’s not good Joxer." Gabrielle answered with concern.

"She told me she’s just not able to sleep without Ephiny...we rode all night to get here on top of that...maybe it will help with her being back here." Joxer explained.

"Ephiny I have missed you so much." Blaise replied as she brushed Ephiny’s hair off her face.

"I’ve missed you too honey...are you okay?...you don’t look so good." Ephiny asked with concern.

"A little tired but I feel a lot better now that I’m holding you...how much longer do you have here?"

"I’m not sure because we aren’t making any progress...I’m sorry." Ephiny answered with a sad face and kissed Blaise... "how long are you staying?"

"Just a couple of days baby."

"Oh, Blaise!" Ephiny answered with disappointment.

"I’m sorry I can’t stay longer but I had to see you even if it was just for a moment...did you see the healer?"

"I’m fine Blaise...don’t worry." Ephiny answered with a smile to reassure Blaise... "I have to get back why don’t you go get some sleep?" Ephiny asked as she kissed Blaise and whispered... "I love you." Ephiny ran her hand softly down Blaise’s cheek as she walked back to the table to continue with the meeting.

Blaise watched her as she sat down and glanced back at her flashing her a sexy smile with a wink. Blaise left the hut and headed towards the food hut for a bite to eat. As Blaise exited the food hut with some cheese she heard Xena shout at her.

"Blaise!"

Blaise looked in Xena’s direction and walked over to greet her sister... "hey Xena!" Blaise answered as she hugged Xena.

"You okay stranger?" Xena asked as she looked her sister over.

"Just tired." Blaise answered with a yawn.

Xena took Blaise’s face in her palms and looked into her eyes... "are you sure?"

"Yeah... but I am worried about Ephiny and I miss her more than I could have ever imagined."

Xena hugged Blaise again... "I know little sister...it’s very tough to be away from the one you love... it’s been tough on Ephiny too but try to make the most of your time together though."

"I intend too Xena...listen I’m going to try and get some sleep while Eph is in the meeting...I’ll catch you later okay?...oh, how’s mother been?" Blaise asked with concern for her mother.

"She’s fine...they’re back home...now get some rest you look like centaur poop!" Xena answered with a smile.

"Thanks so much Xena...I knew I could count on you for a kind word." Blaise answered with a sly smile as she popped some cheese in her mouth and headed towards her hut.

"Hey!...that’s what families are for little sister!" Xena shouted back.

Blaise waved her hand at Xena as she entered the hut and took in a deep breath. Blaise took in the scent from Ephiny’s perfume which lingered in the air as she smiled and moved over to the bed.

Blaise sat down on the bed and noticed Ephiny kept the scrolls she sent her next to the bed along with a pressed rose tucked inside them. Blaise smiled and laid back on the bed thinking about how sweet it was that Ephiny kept her scrolls with a rose in them. Blaise looked over to find her favorite shirt laying on her pillow... "I wondered where I left that!" Blaise laughed as she put the shirt back where she found it... "aah...this feels so good to be back in my bed." Blaise replied out loud as she fell fast asleep.

The council broke for a mid day break still unable to settle their differences and Ephiny rushed back to her hut so see her wife. Ephiny entered the hut to find Blaise sleeping and approached the bed quietly to not wake her. Ephiny smiled lovingly as she watched the love of her life sleep peacefully.

Ephiny gently lifted Blaise’s hand off of her sword and unhooked her scabbard from her side and placed the sword down next to the bed. Ephiny took off Blaise’s boots, socks and pants to make her more comfortable. Ephiny thought about how it was a good thing that she wasn’t an enemy because Blaise was oblivious to what was happening to her.

Ephiny climbed up on the bed next to Blaise and lightly brushed her hair off her forehead. Ephiny placed a gentle kiss on her lips as she held her hand and watched her sleep. Ephiny thought about how much she loved and missed Blaise as she rubbed her finger over the joining ring she gave Blaise. Ephiny smiled as she placed a kiss on the ring and kissed Blaise’s lips again as she whispered... "I love you" in Blaise’s ear. Ephiny left the hut quietly to return to her meeting and ran into Epinon along the way.

"Can you do me a favor?"

"Sure Ephiny." Epinon answered.

"I would like the hot tub hut prepared for this evening and I would like to have dinner there with Blaise...can you arrange it for me?"

"Sure...no problem." Epinon answered with a smile and thought about how romantic the two of them are with each other.

"Thanks I really appreciate it." Ephiny answered as she hurried back to join the council meeting.

Blaise woke to kisses along her face and neck causing a smile to appear on her face... "uhmmm...my wife can be very jealous...let’s hope she doesn’t catch you here." Blaise replied groggily with a smile as she looked at Ephiny.

"Hello...sexy...it looks like I might have to take my chances with your wife." Ephiny answered as she softly kissed Blaise’s lips.

Blaise looked around slightly disoriented and noticed the majority of her clothes were off... "aah...did I miss something that I really would have enjoyed?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile.

"Must have been your loving wife who came in and undressed you...she probably thought you might be more comfortable." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"I’m sorry I missed that." Blaise answered with a sly grin.

Ephiny gave Blaise a long deep kiss as Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny and held her tight enjoying the warm rush she felt consume her body.

Ephiny gazed into Blaise’s sleepy blue eyes... "are you hungry?"

"For you?...always!" Blaise answered with a raise of her eyebrows and a smile.

"That’s later." Ephiny answered seductively as she kissed Blaise... "I’m talking about food."

"Well...then I’m famished."

"Then let’s eat." Ephiny answered as she climbed out of bed.

Blaise sat up slowly on the side of the bed trying to get her bearings and ran her fingers through her disheveled hair with a yawn.

"You okay?" Ephiny asked with worry.

"Just trying to wake...I haven’t had much sleep lately."

Ephiny took Blaise’s hand and helped her off the bed. Ephiny put her arm around Blaise’s waist as they headed towards the door of the hut.

"Aah...Eph...do I need some clothes on?" Blaise asked as she glanced down at Ephiny.

"No...you’re cool." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Oh, wait!...I have to get something." Blaise replied as she went back and grabbed her backpack.

Blaise swung the backpack over her shoulder as she headed back to Ephiny and held her hand as they left the hut... "where are you taking me baby?...are we going to do something kinky?...I’m new to that you know!" Blaise teased.

"We’re going in here and you know you’re not a virgin to kinkiness." Ephiny answered as she pulled Blaise into the hot tub hut.

"Ooh, you’re sassy!" Blaise teased as she looked around the hut to find candles circling the hot tub and a table set with enough food for a feast... "Ephiny...what’s the occasion?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"It’s because I love you and you’ll find out soon enough." Ephiny smiled seductively as she kissed Blaise passionately and moved her back towards the table as they continued their kiss.

Ephiny sat Blaise down at the table and poured some wine for her. Ephiny stood behind Blaise and wrapped her arms around her neck... "I love you baby." Ephiny whispered in Blaise’s ear as she softly kissed her on the cheek.

Blaise took Ephiny’s hand and pulled her around onto her lap. Blaise gazed into her hazel eyes as she wrapped her arms around her wife and slowly slid her tongue into Ephiny’s mouth for a passionate kiss making the butterflies in Ephiny’s stomach flutter faster... "I love you Ephiny." Blaise answered softly... "this is really wonderful...thank you." Blaise smiled and kissed her again.

"Are you ready to eat?" Ephiny asked as she sat in the chair next to Blaise.

"Bring it on baby!" Blaise answered with a smile.

Ephiny scooped out some potatoes and chicken placing it on a plate for Blaise. Blaise began to eat her meal and wondered what Ephiny was up to. Blaise was worried as to what Ephiny might be keeping from her.

"Aah...Ephiny...is there something you want to tell me or is there something wrong?" Blaise asked with trepidation.

"Can’t I have a nice quiet dinner with my love without anything being wrong?" Ephiny asked with a bit of agitation in her voice.

"I guess not but you’re being mysterious." Blaise answered with a smile... "oh, I have something for you." Blaise answered with excitement as she put the bread in her mouth that she was holding and wiped her hands before digging into her backpack. Blaise pulled out a neatly wrapped small box and handed it to Ephiny.

Blaise took the bread out of her mouth to finish eating it as Ephiny opened her gift.

"Blaise that is so sweet...thank you." Ephiny answered with a smile as she opened the present and pulled out a necklace.

The stone was black onyx in the shape of half a heart attached to a piece of leather... "it’s beautiful Blaise...I love it...thank you." Ephiny answered with a surprised yet touched look from Blaise’s gesture.

"Here...I’ll put it on you." Blaise offered as she took the necklace from Ephiny and stood up behind her. Blaise moved her long blond curls off her shoulders and placed the necklace around her neck which rested in the notch of her neck.

"Ooh, that looks sexy baby." Blaise answered as she leaned in and kissed her neck... "I have the other half." Blaise smiled as she pulled her half out for Ephiny to put on her neck.

Ephiny smiled and took the necklace from Blaise placing it around her neck. Ephiny looked into Blaise’s blue eyes... "you’re so thoughtful baby." Ephiny replied as she kissed Blaise’s cheek as happiness swept over Blaise knowing Ephiny liked the necklace.

"I have something for you Blaise." Ephiny replied with a mysterious smile as she pulled out a box and handed it to Blaise.

Blaise put the box to her ear and shook it... "well...it’s not rocks." Blaise teased

Ephiny smiled... "just open it baby."

Blaise opened the box and pulled out it’s contents...a pair of knitted baby booties... "honey...these won’t fit me." Blaise smiled as she held them up and realized what they where... "by the gods, Ephiny you’re pregnant?!" Blaise asked with excitement and a huge smile on her face.

Ephiny had tears of joy in her eyes at Blaise’s excitement... "yes...I am honey."

"Oh, baby!" Blaise shouted as tears filled her eyes and she picked Ephiny up in her arms... "I’m so happy baby...are you?" Blaise asked with a smile as her heart raced faster with Ephiny’s news.

"Unbelievably so Blaise!" Ephiny smiled as she wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck.

"I love you Ephiny...this is one of the happiest moments of my life." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny with tears streaming down her face.

"I love you Blaise." Ephiny answered as she wiped Blaise’s tears away and kissed her softly.

"Oh, what was I thinking squeezing you like that...did I hurt the baby?" Blaise asked with worry as she put Ephiny down.

Ephiny laughed... "it’s okay honey you aren’t going to hurt the baby."

"Whew!...that’s a relief." Blaise answered with a sigh... "can I look?" Blaise asked as she pointed at Ephiny’s belly.

"Yes...but you won’t see anything honey." Ephiny chuckled at Blaise’s excitement and nervousness.

"Hey!...wait a minute...what have you been doing while I’ve been gone to get pregnant!" Blaise teased.

"Blaise...you know this is your baby!" Ephiny answered with a laugh.

"I’m just teasing you darlin...this must be our wedding present Aphie told me about...she said we would know it when we got it so, this has to be it." Blaise answered with a smile as she kissed her.

Blaise knelt down on one knee and opened Ephiny’s robe placing both hands on her stomach as she leaned forward to gently kiss her abdomen. Ephiny put her hands on Blaise’s head and ran her fingers through her hair as she smiled with excitement at how loving Blaise was being.

"Hello...I’m going to be your...aah...mom." Blaise stammered momentarily trying to figure out what name best described her as she kissed Ephiny’s stomach. Blaise looked up at Ephiny... "that sounds kind of weird."

"Why baby?" Ephiny asked as she looked down at Blaise.

"Me a mom?" Blaise smiled at Ephiny in awe that she was to be a mother.

"You’re going to be a fabulous mother Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile as she untied her robe allowing it to fall to the ground... " Blaise take the rest of my clothes off." Ephiny demanded seductively.

"What about the baby?" Blaise asked as she stood before Ephiny.

"The baby is going to get a birds eye view...now undress me." Ephiny demanded with a sexy smile.

"Okay don’t get pushy." Blaise teased... "baby you have made me the happiest person in the world." Blaise replied with a huge smile and kissed Ephiny... "I guess my gift is not as big as I thought compared to yours."

"Blaise...I love my necklace and it’s very important to me because it’s from you." Ephiny answered as she lightly stroked Blaise’s face with the back of her hand... "you have given me the gift of happiness, life, love and now a child. Our love produced this baby, of course, with a little help from the gods but more from our love for one another...I love you baby." Ephiny kissed Blaise as her wife wrapped her arms around her.

Blaise ran her hands softly up Ephiny’s sensual curves to the sides of her breasts and moved them to the front sliding them under the garment she wore. Blaise caressed Ephiny’s soft, supple breasts as she explored Ephiny’s mouth with her tongue. Ephiny reached in and untied her top letting the material fall to the floor. Blaise rubbed Ephiny’s breasts and gently pinched her erect nipples as she continued her sensual kiss.

Ephiny slid her hands into Blaise’s vest and pushed it off her shoulders to the ground as Blaise moved her soft kisses down Ephiny’s neck to her breasts. The warmth Ephiny felt overwhelmed her from Blaise’s touch and kiss. Blaise moved her mouth onto Ephiny’s breast and circled her tongue around her erect nipple as she began to gently suck her breast.

"Oh, Blaise...that feels so good." Ephiny moaned softly as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s soft, wavy hair.

Blaise’s kisses traveled down Ephiny’s stomach as she slid her hands under Ephiny’s skirt lifting it up. Blaise slowly moved her mouth onto Ephiny’s sex and tasted her through her undergarments feeling the heat and moistness between Ephiny’s legs. Ephiny’s breath escaped her momentarily as she felt Blaise’s tongue on her sex and gasped for a breath. Blaise continued to lick and softly bite her sex as she unwrapped her skirt which she threw to the ground.

Blaise slid her fingers to the sides of her undergarments and slid them down Ephiny’s muscular legs revealing her wet, hot sex. Blaise moved her kisses back up Ephiny’s stomach to her breasts as she stood up.

"Blaise you’re driving me nuts with this teasing." Ephiny whispered seductively as she looked into her lovers deep blue eyes.

Ephiny slid Blaise’s sports bra over her head and threw it to the floor as she ran her hands softly along Blaise’s muscular chest. Blaise began to kiss Ephiny’s neck as she wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck.

"By the gods Blaise...do you have to tease me this much!" Ephiny moaned as her heart raced with every touch and kiss from Blaise.

"I just want to take my time and make this moment last baby." Blaise whispered as Ephiny tilted her head back to enjoy Blaise’s soft kiss on her neck.

"It feels so good baby." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise moved her lips back to Ephiny’s parted mouth and slid her tongue inside for a deep kiss as Ephiny ran her hands down Blaise’s muscular body pushing her boxer shorts off as she pressed her warm body against Blaise’s once again.

Blaise slid her hands down to Ephiny’s firm backside gently squeezing her butt as she kissed her more intensity. Blaise moved her hand around to Ephiny’s sex and ran her finger along Ephiny’s wet clit as Ephiny’s knees buckled from Blaise’s touch with Blaise steading her in her arms. Blaise continued her kiss as she picked Ephiny up and carried her to the hot tub.

As they both entered the hot tub the hot water gave them a rush of warmth over their bodies. Blaise wet her hair and leaned back against the wall of the tub and pulled Ephiny onto her lap. Ephiny leaned her back against Blaise and tilted her head back to rest it on Blaise’s shoulders.

Blaise began to suck Ephiny’s neck as she slid her hands under Ephiny’s wet breasts to caress them... "Oh, baby you feel so good touching me." Ephiny moaned.

Blaise ran her hands down Ephiny’s stomach to her legs and spread them for easier access then moved her hands back up to her breasts to gently pinch her hard nipples... "baby please touch me." Ephiny pleaded softly.

"Did you miss me honey?" Blaise asked in a whisper in her ear.

"I missed you so much and I long for you to touch me."

Blaise continued to suck her neck and slowly moved her hands down Ephiny’s body to her center. Blaise spread Ephiny’s folds apart and slid her fingers between them as she began to massage her moist, swollen nub.

Ephiny pressed her head into Blaise’s shoulder and grabbed tightly onto Blaise’s muscular thigh as she gasped for a deep breath. Ephiny turned her head entering Blaise’s mouth with her tongue for a deep, sensuous kiss as Blaise slowly entered Ephiny’s opening with her finger moving it deeper as Ephiny relaxed more.

"Aah...Blaise." Ephiny moaned through her kiss.

Blaise slid her finger in and out of Ephiny’s wet opening causing Ephiny to become more aroused each time Blaise moved her finger deeper. Blaise moved her other hand to Ephiny’s sex and circled her finger over her slick, hard clit as Ephiny threw her head back in pleasure... "baby...you make me feel so good." Ephiny moaned in a deep voice.

Blaise placed soft bites followed by soft kisses along Ephiny’s neck as she picked up her pace moving her fingers in and out of Ephiny as she moved her hips faster in response to Blaise’s touch.

"Deeper...Blaise...deeper." Ephiny moaned as Blaise slid her fingers deeper inside of her warm, tight opening... "oh, yes!" Ephiny whispered in ecstasy.

Ephiny’s clit grew harder under Blaise’s finger along with her arousal as Blaise continued to rub her swollen nub. Ephiny’s opening widened as she became more relaxed allowing Blaise to insert another long, slender finger as Ephiny winced slightly with the entry.

"Oh, Blaise." Ephiny moaned as she moved her hips faster and began to breath harder... "aah...yes... faster Blaise faster."

Blaise obliged her request and moved her fingers in and out faster... "do you have something for me baby?" Blaise whispered seductively in her ear as she nibbled on her lobe.

"Oh...yes...yes...Blaise!" Ephiny screamed as she released her orgasm.

"That’s my girl...let it all out baby...I think you’ve got some more for me." Blaise whispered as she pressed her finger against Ephiny’s throbbing clit.

Ephiny’s body shuddered and she released more of her orgasm screaming once again from her ecstasy. Blaise kissed her neck and slowly slid her fingers out of Ephiny causing her to release more of her orgasm. Blaise moved her hands up around Ephiny’s waist and held her tight... "you feel so good baby." Blaise whispered in her ear.

Ephiny turned around and straddled her legs around Blaise’s waist throwing her arms around her neck to capture her lips for a passionate kiss. Ephiny broke her kiss and gazed into Blaise’s dazzling blue eyes... "you’re such an attentive lover Blaise...you make me feel so special...I love you." Ephiny replied with a loving smile.

Blaise smiled and wrapped her arms around Ephiny’s naked body tighter... "I love you honey." Blaise whispered as she kissed Ephiny deeply. Blaise broke her kiss as she looked into Ephiny’s hazel eyes and ran her fingers through her wet blond hair with a loving smile.

"What’s wrong baby?" Ephiny asked as Blaise’s face turned serious.

Blaise smiled slightly as tears filled her eyes as she thought about how much she loved Ephiny and could not be happier.

"Blaise...honey." Ephiny answered with worry as Blaise looked down and ran her hands down Ephiny’s shoulders to her hands. Blaise pulled her hands up out of the water and kissed them... "babe...what’s wrong?...you’re scaring me." Ephiny replied as she tilted her head to make eye contact with Blaise and noticed she was crying... "oh, baby what is it?" Ephiny asked as she hugged Blaise and knew she was embarrassed to cry in front of her despite the fact that she was her soulmate.

Blaise held Ephiny tightly as her head was buried in her shoulder and Blaise gently kissed her shoulder... "Blaise..honey..you don’t have to always be strong around me."

Ephiny replied as she leaned back to make eye contact with Blaise. Ephiny took Blaise’s face in her hands and wiped the tears from her eyes... "tell me what’s wrong?"

Blaise took a deep breath and smiled... "what a sappy God of War I’m going to make huh?" Blaise chuckled nervously... "Ephiny I don’t want to have to leave you and the baby...I can’t stand to be away from you for a moment." Blaise answered as she leaned her head against Ephiny’s shoulder. Ephiny kissed her head and stroked her fingers through her dark, wet hair.

"Oh, baby...I don’t want to be apart from you either...when do you have to leave?"

"Tomorrow." Blaise whispered as she held Ephiny tighter... "I don’t want to miss another moment of our life together or one moment of your pregnancy." Blaise answered as she gazed into Ephiny’s eyes... "I love you Eph." Blaise replied as she kissed Ephiny’s lips softly.

Ephiny pushed Blaise’s hair back as she stared into Blaise’s sad blue eyes... "we’ll get through it some how baby...maybe we can meet somewhere in between more frequently or something...try not to worry about it so much." Ephiny answered trying to reassure Blaise... "listen to me telling you that when I should take my own advice because I do the same thing." Ephiny answered with a smile as she kissed Blaise on the forehead.

"I’ll just have to delegate more duties to others because I can’t be away from you for as long as I have been...it hurts too much." Blaise explained as she kissed and held Ephiny in her arms... "baby tonight was wonderful and I will never forget how special this night was for me...thank you." Blaise replied as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes and kissed her lips softly... "uhmmm...I had always hoped...aah." Blaise stammered as she looked down nervously... "I...aah would find someone to love and share my life with but I never expected to love someone as much as I love you Eph...you have completely stolen my heart." Blaise explained as she looked in her eyes and placed her hand on her face... "I love you more than life itself baby." Blaise replied as she slowly moved in towards Ephiny as she continued to gaze into her eyes for a loving kiss.

Ephiny began to cry... "you make me feel so special Blaise as if I’m the most important person in the world...you don’t know what that means to me to be loved that way."

"I didn’t mean to make you cry...please don’t honey...you might upset the baby not to mention me." Blaise answered with a smile as she wiped Ephiny’s tears away then moved her hand down to Ephiny’s stomach and rubbed her hand over it gently.

"You’re going to be very protective aren’t you?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"Very protective of my wife and child...I can’t help it because it’s just my nature and you’re both the most important people in my life...how about if we tell Xena and Gabrielle the wonderful news?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"Yes...it will be a relief to tell them because it’s been very hard to keep it a secret from them...I wanted you to be the first to know." Ephiny answered as she stood up.

"Stay right there I’ll get you a towel." Blaise replied as she put her palms on Ephiny’s stomach and placed a soft kiss on it.

"Blaise do you have a stomach fetish that I don’t know about?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"I’m giving the baby a kiss woman!...but now that I think about it you do have an incredibly sexy stomach." Blaise answered with a sexy smile as she approached Ephiny and put her hands on Ephiny’s shoulders... "Eph...are you sure you want this baby?" Blaise asked with concern.

"Blaise...there are two things that I’m sure of in this world." Ephiny answered as she put her hand on Blaise’s cheek with Blaise placing her hand on Ephiny’s as she gazed into her eyes... "my undying love for you and wanting this baby that I’m carrying...there is nothing else in this world that I could want ...well...other than more childeren." Ephiny answered with a smile as she kissed Blaise.

"I feel the same as you baby and it amazes me that I’m as lucky as I am to be loved so much by such a wonderful woman." Blaise answered with a smile as she kissed Ephiny and stood up to exit the tub.

Ephiny pinched Blaise’s butt as she exited the tub... "hmmm...nice bum where you from?" Ephiny smiled mischievously.

"Easy darlin...don’t bruise the merchandise." Blaise answered with a laugh as she grabbed a towel and waited at the steps with the towel open for Ephiny to step into... "climb in my little vixen." Blaise replied in a sexy voice as she looked up at Ephiny who was descending the steps... "have I ever told you that I think you’re incredibly beautiful?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile.

"Yes...but I don’t mind you telling me from time to time." Ephiny answered as she moved into Blaise’s arms who wrapped the towel around her wet body and kissed her.

"Thanks baby." Ephiny answered with a smile as Blaise dried her off.

They both dressed and headed over to Xena and Gabrielle’s hut. Blaise slowly and quietly opened the door just enough for the pair to slip into as she scanned the room to make sure Xena wasn’t about to pounce on them.

"Blaise!" Ephiny whispered.

Blaise turned to her... "ssh!" Blaise motioned with her finger to her lips as she pulled her head back out of the hut.

"What are you doing?"

"Trying to catch them in a compromising position." Blaise answered as she looked back with a sly grin while she took Ephiny’s hand and led her through the door tiptoeing up to the bed were Xena and Gabrielle were sleeping.

Blaise climbed into the bed between the two and startled Xena out of bed fumbling for her sword naked. Gabrielle opened her eyes to Blaise laying next to her laughing.

"Hi Gabby!" Blaise replied with a laugh.

"Blaise?...what in tartarus are you doing?" Xena asked with anger as her heart raced from being startled and not hearing Blaise enter the hut... "Ephiny?" Xena asked as she looked to the opposite side of the bed to find Ephiny laughing.

"Oh, Ephiny and I thought we might have a threesome with Gabrielle and you could watch Xena...just make sure you take some good notes though." Blaise teased.

"Oh, can we Xena?" Gabrielle teased and laughed as she cuddled up next to Blaise with Ephiny climbing into bed to snuggle up next to Gabrielle... "hey, I think I like this." Gabrielle replied with a laugh.

"You three are just a barrel of laughs." Xena answered with agitation.

"Oh, Xena you look so sexy standing there naked with only your sword in your hand." Blaise teased as everyone laughed.

"Why Blaise I outta..." Xena answered with agitation as she sat on Blaise.

"Ooh!" Blaise groaned from the weight of Xena sitting on her.

"I don’t want to be left out to watch I want to join in!" Xena answered as everyone laughed.

"Oh, Xena your butt feels so good on my stomach...too bad we’re sisters." Blaise teased as she rolled Xena off her stomach... "hey, I’ve got the same birthmark on my butt Xena!" Blaise exclaimed as she slapped Xena’s butt.

"Do you really?" Xena asked with a laugh.

"Ask Eph she’ll tell you...here." Blaise pulled her boxers down to reveal her birthmark which was exactly the same as Xena’s.

"That’s wild...we’ll have to find out if the rest of the family has them." Xena answered with a chuckle.

"Nice butt Blaise." Gabrielle replied with a laugh.

"It sure is." Ephiny chimed in.

"Just what are you two up too anyway?" Xena asked with skepticism.

"Okay Eph you have to be serious...stop fooling around." Blaise teased with a laugh as she got up and went around the bed to help Ephiny up. Blaise put her arm around Ephiny and looked at her... "do you want to tell them or should I?"

Xena and Gabrielle wrapped themselves in the blanket and sat next to each other on the bed... " someone tell us!" Gabrielle exclaimed with excitement.

"You tell her she’s your sister." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Okay...well...Ephiny’s really a man." Blaise laughed as Ephiny elbowed her.

"Oh, come on the suspense is killing me!" Gabrielle replied.

Blaise held Ephiny’s hand as she smiled at her lover and turned to the pair on the bed... "seriously...Ephiny is pregnant." Blaise answered with a proud smile on her face.

Gabrielle put her hands to her mouth with excitement as tears welled in her eyes... "that’s wonderful!" she shouted as she stood up and hugged Ephiny.

"That’s fantastic Blaise!...I’m gonna be an aunt!" Xena shouted with excitement as she hugged Blaise. Xena leaned away and met Blaise’s blue eyes... "I’m so happy for you...for you both." Xena answered as she looked at Ephiny and hugged them both.

Gabrielle moved over and hugged Blaise... "I’m so happy for you Blaise."

"Thanks Gabrielle." Blaise answered with a smile.

Blaise put her hand out for Ephiny who clasped her hand and Blaise pulled her towards her.

"Well...what are you hoping to have?" Gabrielle asked with excitement.

"I hope we have a boy." Blaise answered with excitement as Gabrielle and Ephiny glanced at one another with a look that Blaise said something wrong.

Gabrielle cleared her throat and looked back at Blaise... "why a boy Blaise?"

"Because I wouldn’t want my little girl joining with someone like me!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

"It doesn’t matter as long as we have a healthy baby." Ephiny answered as she looked at Gabrielle with a stoic look on her face. Blaise stood behind Ephiny and slid her arms around her to rest her hands on Ephiny’s stomach. Ephiny put her hands on Blaise’s as Blaise kissed her on the head.

Xena slid her hand into Gabrielle’s and smiled... "I can’t believe I’m gong to be an aunt." Xena replied with excitement.

"Blaise we should be going."

"Yes...dear." Blaise teased as she kissed Ephiny on the cheek.

Xena got up and walked towards the door with Blaise as Ephiny spoke with Gabrielle.

"Ephiny you’ve got to tell her about boys and amazons." Gabrielle whispered.

"I will Gabrielle...I just have to find the right time...she seems so excited about a boy though...maybe the excitement will wear off and she will be more set on a girl."

"Ephiny...you should tell her." Gabrielle answered with concern.

"I just have to find the right time to do it...please don’t say anything to her...I should be the one to tell her."

"I won’t and I’ll tell Xena the same."

"Thanks Gabrielle...I appreciate it." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Don’t wait too long Ephiny." Gabrielle answered matter a factly.

Ephiny caught up to Blaise and Xena as they stood outside of the hut... "Eph...want a piggyback ride?" Blaise asked with a sly grin.

"I’d love one." Ephiny answered as Blaise squatted down allowing her to hop up on her back.

Blaise helped Ephiny up on her... "you and the baby okay?" Blaise asked as she peered over her shoulder.

"We’re fine baby." Ephiny answered as she wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck and kissed her cheek... "Xena your sister is a worry wort." Ephiny teased with a smile.

"I was the same way when I was pregnant with Solan even though I wouldn’t let on to anyone else." Xena answered with sadness as she looked down.

Blaise grabbed her hand and held it... "I’m sorry if we have brought up painful memories of Solan...I just wanted to share our happiness with family."

"No...Blaise...you have every right to be happy... the baby is wonderful and you should be happy...I’m very happy for you and I can’t wait to teach the little one the good ol pinch." Xena answered with a laugh as she pinched the skin on Blaise’s neck.

Blaise laughed... "watch it...you’ll give me a hickey." Blaise answered as she lifted Ephiny back up who slipped farther down her back.

"That’s okay cause it will match the one on Ephiny’s neck." Xena laughed and pointed to Ephiny’s neck as Ephiny buried her head in Blaise’s back with embarrassment softly biting Blaise.

Blaise laughed... "that’s our cue to go...see you in the morning."

Xena smiled as the pair headed off to their hut and she entered her own hut to find Gabrielle standing with her back to her and her head down. Xena approached Gabrielle and put her hands on her shoulders.

"You okay?" Xena asked softly.

Gabrielle wiped the tears from her eyes... "no...not really."

Xena turned Gabrielle to face her and brushed her hair off her face... "come on honey...we’ll have a baby too one day." Xena answered to reassure Gabrielle.

"We’re being punished Xena...we have prayed to the gods for a child and still nothing."

Xena hugged her... "it’s not you baby I’m sure it’s me...I must have angered too many gods for them to bless us with a child...I’m sorry." Xena answered with regret.

Gabrielle hugged Xena tightly as Xena kissed her... "come on let’s get some sleep...it will happen one day and we will definitely have fun trying to conceive our child." Xena replied with a smile.

"You’re right Xena." Gabrielle answered with a smile as they climbed back into bed.

Blaise and Ephiny laid in their bed naked looking at one another. Ephiny laid on her back as Blaise laid on her side propped up on her arm and ran her finger down Ephiny’s neck to her stomach then started over again.

"Do you enjoy tickling my fancy Blaise?" Ephiny asked with a sexy smile.

"Oh, yeah...I love to feel the softness of your skin." Blaise answered as she leaned down and kissed Ephiny’s breast tenderly.

"Ooh, that feels good...aah...what are we going to name our baby Blaise?"

"Well...uhmmm...I had a couple of ideas." Blaise answered as she stroked her hand lightly over Ephiny’s stomach... "if you agree of course."

"What are they baby?" Ephiny asked with a smile touched that Blaise was nervous about telling her the names she had chosen for their child.

"Well...aah." Blaise answered shyly... "promise me if you don’t like them you can tell me and it won’t hurt my feelings okay?" Blaise asked as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes.

"Honey...it seems to me that you have thought about some names that have a meaning for you and I promise that I will like them no matter what...well...except Ares...I don’t want our children named that." Ephiny teased to reassure Blaise.

"No need to worry about that name because it won’t happen..well...I thought if it was a boy I would like to name him Chayce...if you agree." Blaise replied as she looked at Ephiny looking for acceptance.

"I like that name but how did you come up with it?"

"It means a great hunter and I thought he could take after you with your amazon training." Blaise answered as she lightly rubbed Ephiny’s stomach.

"Oh, honey...that’s so sweet." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"If it’s a girl I would like to name her Jordan because that was the name my mother intended to give me." Blaise answered with her head down with regret.

Tears welled in Ephiny’s eyes... "baby those are beautiful names...I can’t believe you worried that I wouldn’t like them...I love those names." Ephiny answered as she ran her hand through Blaise’s hair... "I can’t get over how you make me love you more and more all the time." Ephiny replied with a smile as she pulled Blaise down for a kiss.

"I love you Eph." Blaise whispered through her kiss.

Blaise broke their kiss and laid her head down between Ephiny’s breast and stomach. She moved her hand on Ephiny’s stomach and placed a soft kiss there as she closed her eyes. Ephiny ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair as Blaise fell fast asleep.

Ephiny reached up and ran her fingers over the necklace Blaise had given her and thought about how happy she was with Blaise. She thought about how much she loved Blaise and wondered how she was to tell her that their son would not be excepted in the amazon village as an equal. Ephiny continued to play with Blaise’s hair as she drifted off to sleep.

Ephiny woke before Blaise the next morning who hadn’t moved from her previous position from the night before. Ephiny ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair gently and reached for her hand pulling it to her lip to place soft kisses on them. Blaise lifted her head and smiled as her blue eyes met Ephiny’s... "morning honey." Blaise replied as she moved up to kiss Ephiny’s sensuous lips.

"Sleep well?" Ephiny asked as she gazed into Blaise’s sexy blue eyes.

"I always do when I’m with you Eph." Blaise answered as she slid her hand down Ephiny’s body resting her hand on Ephiny’s stomach and laid her head down on the pillow next to Ephiny’s.

Ephiny smiled and thought about how sweet it was that Blaise kept touching and kissing her belly to be close to the baby.

Blaise looked at Ephiny and saw the smile on her face. Blaise lifted her head up to make eye contact with her... "what are you smiling at my love?"

"I’m smiling because I am so incredibly happy right now." Ephiny answered as she gave Blaise a sideways glance.

Blaise put her head down on the pillow... "me too...I couldn’t be happier thanks to you Eph." Blaise whispered in her ear as she softly kissed her cheek.

Ephiny rolled on top of Blaise resting her head on Blaise’s chest as her long hair draped off to the side... "when do you have to leave?"

Blaise looked into Ephiny’s eyes with a look of sadness and pushed a stray strand of hair off her face... "as soon as I dress." Blaise answered softly as she leaned down to kiss Ephiny’s forehead... "I’m sorry." Blaise replied as Ephiny lifted her head up accepting the kiss Blaise offered her as her eyes filled with tears. Blaise ended their kiss and climbed out of bed to dress as Ephiny cried softly while watching Blaise preparing to leave once again.

Blaise finished dressing and knelt before Ephiny who was sitting on the side of the bed... "Eph...I love you and I’m going to miss you baby." Blaise leaned in to kiss and hug Ephiny. Ephiny held Blaise tightly not wanting to let her go. Blaise leaned down and kissed her stomach... "bye baby...mom loves you and will miss you too." Blaise replied softly.

Blaise looked back up at Ephiny with a smile and kissed her again... "see you soon." Blaise whispered as she got up and quickly left the hut never looking back at Ephiny because it was too painful.

Blaise made her way towards the stables and was stopped by Gabrielle... "Blaise please be safe...we’ll miss you." Gabrielle replied as she hugged Blaise.

"Thanks Gabrielle...could you please make sure Ephiny takes care of herself while I’m away?"

Gabrielle put her hand on Blaise’s cheek for reassurance... "I will see to it that she stays happy and healthy...don’t worry and you make sure you take care of yourself." Gabrielle demanded as she poked Blaise’s chest with her finger... "Joxer told me how you are when you’re away from Ephiny...now make sure you get some sleep while you’re gone!"

"He ratted on me huh?...I guess I’ll have to cut his pay then." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"You’ve done a nice thing for him Blaise by trusting him enough to give him a job like you have...it means a lot to him and he will be loyal to you forever."

"He’s not a bad guy...he just needs help with his social skills." Blaise answered with a smile.

"I really appreciate what you’ve done for him Blaise."

Joxer led their horses out of the stables and shouted... "are you ready Blaise?...we need to head out."

Blaise raised her hand to acknowledge she heard him... "I’ve created a monster." Blaise laughed as she looked at Gabrielle.

"He takes his job seriously because you put forth an extra effort with him and he needs that from people."

Blaise leaned down and kissed Gabrielle on the cheek... "take care of my girls Ephiny and Xena while I’m gone." Blaise answered with a smile as she walked away.

"I will and be careful!" Gabrielle shouted as Blaise took Taz’s reigns from Joxer as she watched Gabrielle enter the hut.

"Blaise...be careful okay?" Xena replied as she approached.

"You okay?" Blaise asked knowing something was wrong with her sister.

"Oh, sure." Xena answered brushing Blaise off.

Blaise looked back and noticed Joxer was listening to their conversation. She grabbed Xena’s arm and led them away to talk privately.

"What gives sis?" Blaise asked.

"Oh, aah...I just wish I could go with you that’s all." Xena answered with uneasiness.

"Why would you want to leave Gabrielle to go off to war?"

"Aah...oh...I just miss being on the road...I’m a little bored around here."

"Horseshit Xena...what’s going on?"...don’t beat around the bush with me." Blaise answered with agitation at Xena’s stammering.

"Alright...geez!" Xena answered with agitation... "it’s Gabrielle...we’ve been trying to have a baby and we haven’t had any luck so far...I think the gods are punishing me for my misdeeds and I can’t stand to see the pain in Gabrielle’s eyes because she wants a baby so much." Xena explained with sadness.

"Listen." Blaise answered as she put her hand on her shoulder for comfort... "stay here with your wife and treasure every moment you have with her because I would with Ephiny if I could...I will talk to Aphie and see what I can do to help okay?...don’t worry about it...it’ll happen." Blaise answered with reassurance.

"Thanks Blaise...I appreciate the help."

"Take care of my family please?"

"You know I will protect and care for them with my life Blaise." Xena answered as she hugged Blaise... "I really miss not having you around here."

"Yeah...me too." Blaise answered as she broke their hug and saw Ephiny standing in the doorway of their hut.

Blaise grabbed the saddlehorn and swung herself up on Taz as she heeled him to a gallop towards their hut. Blaise swung Taz around and stopped him so she could face Ephiny. Blaise smiled and winked as Ephiny blew her a kiss. Blaise pulled back on the reigns as Taz raised his front legs and took off in a full gallop out of the village as Joxer joined them.

Blaise and Joxer rode throughout the day and into the night to reach Troy which was in a full out war. Blaise rode up to General Calvin... "what happened?" she asked with agitation.

"They came in by the sea and stormed us...we need reinforcements." Calvin answered with worry.

"Where’s our closest army?"

Calvin pulled out his map and showed it to Blaise who looked down at the map... "here." he pointed to the location on the map.

"Try to hold them off ...I’m on it!" Blaise turned Taz away as her adrenaline pumped... "Jox...you going or staying?"

"Going...my place is with you!" Joxer responded as the pair rode off out of the city to locate the reinforcements.

Xena rolled over to put her arm around Gabrielle but her wife was gone. Xena sat up and looked around the hut... "Gabrielle."...Xena threw her robe on and exited the hut to find Gabrielle sitting on the bench in front of their hut... "what brings a good looking chick like you to a place like this?" Xena asked with a smile as she sat next to her wife.

Gabrielle looked up at Xena and gave her a half smile as she wiped her tears away. Xena put her arm around Gabrielle and pulled her close... "what’s wrong babe?"

"Oh, Xena...I’m such an awful person." Gabrielle responded through tears.

"No you’re not Gabrielle."

"Yes...I am Xena...I’m really jealous of Blaise and Ephiny having a baby." Gabrielle answered with her head down.

"That doesn’t make you a bad person Gabrielle."

"It seems that way to me and I just can’t be that happy even though I told them I was very happy for them." Gabrielle answered with regret.

"Gabrielle stop worrying so much about getting pregnant...it will happen." Xena answered to reassure Gabrielle.

"It sure happened quick for Blaise and Ephiny." Gabrielle snapped.

"That’s right it did Gabrielle and you have to remember Blaise is favored by the gods...I’m not." Xena answered and stood up mad at herself for her misdeeds in the past which was coming back to haunt her.

"Don’t you mean us?" Gabrielle asked as she looked up at Xena.

Xena turned to Gabrielle and knelt before her... "no Gabrielle I mean me...it’s my fault the gods won’t bless us with a child...I’m sure they’re punishing you because of me." Xena answered as she looked down.

Gabrielle leaned her head against Xena’s... "I’m sorry I have put so much pressure on you...if I didn’t have you I wouldn’t know love Xena...so, if we’re not meant to have a baby then I guess I will have to deal with it better than what I am now."

"Thanks Gabrielle...it’s going to happen soon with Blaise’s help."

"You told Blaise!" Gabrielle answered with agitation and embarrassment.

"She’s my sister Gabrielle...besides she knew something was up...so, she said she would speak to Aphrodite for us."

"I guess it wouldn’t hurt." Gabrielle answered with less agitation as she kissed Xena.

"Come on baby let’s go to bed." Xena answered as she pulled Gabrielle up and put her arm around her as they walked into their hut.

Blaise and Joxer made it to the location to alert the army around mid morning. Blaise spoke with their general who sent his officers to prepare the army to head out to Troy.

Blaise mounted Taz... "where to Blaise?" Joxer asked.

"We have a week’s ride to locate the other two armies...are you still up for it?"

"Sure...but do you think we could get some sleep tonight?" Joxer asked with a smile.

"If you’re a good boy Joxer!" Blaise answered with a smile as they headed off on their journey.

Blaise and Joxer rode until sunset and made camp for the evening. Blaise and Joxer sat by the campfire eating the rabbit stew... "this is really good stew Blaise." Joxer replied with a sheepish grin.

"Well...you’re lucky we have rabbit in here dude...how did you miss that rabbit again?" Blaise asked with agitation.

"Well...I bent down to grab him and.."

"Never mind...I don’t want to know...it will just piss me off."

"Blaise...I was wandering...uh...if you could give me some pointers." Joxer asked nervously.

"Sure...when you have the rabbit in your hands you don’t drop him." Blaise answered sarcastically.

"No...I know how to do that Blaise." Joxer laughed

"Then why did I have to chase the freaking rabbit all over to catch him!" Blaise asked with a raised voice.

"Okay...okay...I suck at catching rabbits!" Joxer answered as he wailed his arms around... "are you happy now?"

"Yep." Blaise laughed.

"Alright...I need some pointers with the...ya know." Joxer answered as he looked around and whispered... "ladies."

"Dude...why are you whispering?...we’re the only one’s here." Blaise answered sarcastically.

"I’m nervous that’s why." Joxer answered as he stood up and paced nervously.

"Okay I’ll stop screwing around with you." Blaise answered with a smile... "sit down and pretend I’m a woman in a bar...give me your pick up line."

Joxer sat down and leaned over to Blaise lowering his voice... "hey, baby I’m Joxer the mighty want to see my sword?"

Blaise laughed and put her hand on his forehead to push him out of her face... "I can see you need a lot of help with your social skills dude." Blaise answered with a chuckle.

"Well...what do I do then?" Joxer whined.

"First off don’t whine, secondly, don’t lower your voice and thirdly you need to be suave."

"Suave?" Joxer asked confused.

"Yeah...you know polite like can I get you a drink?" Blaise responded in a sweet voice... "smooth...would you like to dance?" Blaise demonstrated as she put her hand out pretending to take a woman’s hand... "you need to be sweet Joxer...stop trying to be something you’re not."

"How do you mean Blaise?" Joxer asked confused.

"Joxer you try to give off this image that you are a ruthless mighty warrior...that’s not who you are...you’re really a nice guy who cares about people and there’s nothing wrong with that because there needs to be more guys like that in the world."

"Do you think?" Joxer asked excited.

"I know so...now let’s get some sleep." Blaise answered as she laid down on her bedroll for some rest as did Joxer.

"Hey, Blaise."

"Yeah."

"Thanks for helping me out and for being my friend I appreciate it."

"You’re welcome...just stick with me and watch the master...before long the ladies will be eating our of your hand." Blaise laughed.

"Now...that wouldn’t be bad at all." Joxer answered with a smile... "well...goodnight." Joxer responded as he rolled over to fall asleep.

"Yep." Blaise answered as she looked up at the stars and felt her necklace with thoughts of Ephiny. Blaise thought about how beautiful her wife is and how much she loves her. She thought about their baby and smiled as she closed her eyes to picture Ephiny.

Blaise fell asleep for a few candle marks and had to suffer through Joxer’s snoring as she did some song writing until sunrise.

"Let’s get going dude." Blaise replied as she tapped Joxer to wake him.

"Oh, mommie...can I stay home from lessons today?" Joxer answered through his sleep.

"NO!" Blaise shouted as she threw water on his face.

"Aah...I’m up!" Joxer shouted as he jumped up and helped Blaise pick up camp.

Blaise and Joxer found the armies they were searching for to have them join the other troops in Troy. They headed back after being on the road for two and a half moons gathering armies. The war still raged on in Troy as they made their way back into the city.

Blaise approached General Calvin... "have the reinforcements made a difference? Blaise asked.

"They have made a big difference Blaise and I expect this latest skirmish to quiet down soon...Blaise...are you okay?...you look really tired." Calvin asked with concern.

"I’m okay just been on the road too long...it will be nice for it to calm down around here." Blaise answered as she went to check on the men as Aphrodite appeared.

"Hey, sexy!"

"Aphie!" Blaise answered with excitement as Aphrodite hugged her.

"How’s my fav warrior?" She asked with a smile.

"Tired and lonely for my wife."

"It shows on your beautiful face sweetpea." Aphrodite answered as she kissed her cheek.

"It would have been more of a help if you would have chosen a better leader than that wuss Paris Aphie!...You can’t always go for the good looks you know." Blaise teased.

"Oh, I know but he’s so cute!" Aphrodite answered with a smile and a shrug of the shoulders... "so, tell me how does it feel knowing you’re going to be a mom?" Aphrodite asked with a big smile as she poked Blaise’s stomach.

"Incredible!...I can’t describe the feeling Aphie but I’m the happiest woman in the world."

"It’s a wonderful yet scary feeling to know there is going to be a helpless little baby coming into your life." Aphrodite answered with a high pitched voice and a smile... "that you’re responsible for taking care of and loving."

"I can’t wait!" Blaise answered with excitement... "thank you for making it happen."

Blaise replied with a smile.

"Honey...I just put in a good word for you with a couple of family members who were more than happy to help."

"Well...please tell them I said thank you until I can properly do it...aah...could you do me another favor?" Blaise asked sheepishly with puppy dog eyes.

"Of course, my love...anything you want..you know I’ve never or will ever deny you anything."

"Could you put in a good word for Xena and Gabrielle?" Blaise asked as she flashed a sexy smile.

"Blaise!" Aphrodite whined and stomped her foot... "don’t give me that look...Xena is not in very good favor with the gods."

"She’s done a lot of good to make up for her past misdeeds besides you said anything."

"Ooh, you!...I can’t be mad at you when you give me that face." Aphrodite answered as she pinched her cheek.

"Xena is joined with an amazon queen and she’s my sister not to mention your niece, Zeus’s granddaughter...need I go on?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"I know...can I babysit sometime?" Aphrodite asked with excitement.

"As long as you don’t put the baby in any frilly pink stuff like you tried to do with me...deal?" Blaise asked as she raised her eyebrows.

"But you looked so sweet!" Aphrodite whined with a smile.

"No...I looked silly!...Cuppie never has let me live that one down thanks to you!" Blaise laughed.

"Okay...I’ll put in a good word for the warrior babe." Aphrodite answered with a smile.

"And?" Blaise asked as she raised her eyebrows with a smile.

"Ooh, you’re just like your father manipulating me like that...okay...no pink frilly things on the baby." Aphrodite replied defeated.

"You’re the best...thanks...it means a lot to Xena and Gabrielle as well as me." Blaise answered as she hugged Aphrodite.

Aphrodite kissed Blaise... "bye baby." Aphrodite winked at Blaise as she disappeared.

Blaise smiled and shook her head as Aphrodite left. Blaise walked over to check on her men... "sergeant...make sure that ten men are moved to the east wall." Blaise instructed the soldier as she noticed he was preoccupied with something over her shoulder.

Blaise turned to see what it was and noticed it was Helen standing by the commanders tent. Helen waved and smiled to Blaise who returned the gesture. Blaise stood in front of the sergeant to get his attention as she put her right hand on her hip and rested her left hand on her sword much like her father.

"Ten men on the east wall now sergeant." Blaise ordered with agitation.

"Sorry sir...aah... B..B." the sergeant stammered nervously.

"Just get to it." Blaise ordered as she shook her head in disgust.

Helen stood admiring Blaise from afar and she noticed Ephiny walked up next to her. Ephiny looked at Helen then back at Blaise and looked at Helen realizing who she was standing next too.

"She’s very confidant, poised, sexy and quite amazing wouldn’t you say?" Helen responded with admiration of Blaise.

"Yes...she is." Ephiny answered with a smirk on her face knowing Blaise was her wife as she watched Blaise walk over to help some soldiers lift some heavy equipment... "ooh, yes... very strong, sensual and she also has a nice butt." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Do you know Blaise?" Helen asked as she looked at Ephiny who continued to watch her lover with admiration.

"Yeah...very well actually...she’s my wife." Ephiny answered with cockiness and looked at Helen with a smirk on her face.

"You’re Ephiny?" Helen asked with an embarrassed smile... "I’ve heard so much about you...I...aah hope you weren’t offended by what I said about Blaise."

"No... I can’t be offended when you’re speaking the truth but the funny thing is... Blaise has never mentioned you but yet you know me?" Ephiny asked confused and a little insecure.

"Yes." Helen smiled... "Blaise speaks of you often...she loves you very much."

"That’s good to know...now let’s hope you remember that when you’re around my wife." Ephiny answered with agitation and jealousy.

"I’m sorry for creating a problem...let’s start over my name is Helen." She answered with a smile as she reached to shake Ephiny’s hand who met the gesture with a forceful handshake... "congratulations on your baby."

"Ephiny...Thank you." Ephiny answered with a strained smile.

Blaise glanced back where Helen was standing and turned back to what she was doing when she realized she thought she saw Ephiny. She turned back around and put her hand above her eyes to shield them from the sun to get a good look and confirmed it was indeed Ephiny standing next to Helen.

"Ephiny!" Blaise replied softly with excitement as she ran across the square in her direction.

"Excuse me...I need to see my wife." Ephiny replied with a grin as she walked towards Blaise.

"Ephiny!" Blaise shouted with a smile as she ran up and hugged her wife.

"Hey baby!" Ephiny answered with a smile and a feeling of relief that Blaise was okay.

Blaise put Ephiny back down and kissed her. She looked into her eyes and smiled... "look at you baby...Blaise answered with a laugh as she moved her hand on Ephiny’s protruding abdomen. Blaise knelt down and kissed the baby... "hey, baby...it’s your mother." Blaise replied with happiness.

Blaise stood up as her senses hit her and her smile left her face... "Ephiny...what in tartarus are you doing here?" Blaise asked with anger.

"I didn’t hear from you for three moons Blaise and I was worried...I remembered that Joxer told me about a secret passageway here."

"I’m going to kill him!...sergeant!" Blaise shouted as she grabbed his arm while he walked by... "go find my assistant and bring him to me!" She shouted with anger as she turned back to Ephiny with fiery blue eyes.

"Blaise...don’t be mad at Joxer I tricked him into it." Ephiny replied with concern for him.

"Ephiny you shouldn’t be here...it’s too dangerous."

"Blaise I’m an amazon I can take care of myself or did you forget about that again!" Ephiny shouted back.

"Traitor!" a soldier yelled in the distance as a man fired an arrow towards Blaise.

Blaise stared Ephiny down... "it’s too dangerous and you’re not in your peak fighting condition Ephiny!" Blaise shouted as Ephiny caught the arrow in mid air which would have hit Blaise in the head.

Ephiny held the arrow in front of Blaise to prove her point which angered Blaise more as she pulled out her boot dagger and threw it into the chest of the man who shot the arrow killing him.

Blaise looked back at Ephiny with anger as she held her hand out for the soldier to return her dagger placing it back in her boot.

"Ephiny!" Blaise shouted as she looked around to find the noise she was hearing... "run!" she shouted as she pushed Ephiny along who began to run as the noise came closer to the pair. Blaise pushed Ephiny away from her as Ephiny tumbled and rolled the best she could to protect the baby as a fireball struck close to Blaise sending her airborne far away from Ephiny.

Blaise’s left knee hit the ground first as her body crumbled to the ground knocking the wind out of her momentarily... "aah!" Blaise gasped as she caught her breath and shouted in pain. She pulled herself up on all fours groggy from the impact as more fireballs exploded around her.

"Ephiny!" Blaise whispered through her pain as she looked for her and saw her laying on the ground trying to get up as another fireball exploded next to Blaise causing her to cover her head and crouch down from the blast. Blaise got to her feet and tried to run but fell flat on her face from the pain in her knee. Blaise was unable to walk and began to crawl towards Ephiny with no use of her left leg.

Joxer ran up to Blaise... "Blaise!" he shouted as he knelt down to help her up.

"Joxer get Ephiny!" she shouted and pointed at her.

"What about you?" Joxer asked with concern.

"Get Ephiny and the baby to safety...go!" She shouted as he ran off to help Ephiny as Blaise put her face in her hands trying to take her focus off the pain and nausea she felt.

"Come on Ephiny!" Joxer replied as he grabbed her to help her to safety.

"No...Blaise!" Ephiny shouted as she tried to pull away from him to help Blaise but couldn’t break his grasp as he led her to safety.

Blaise looked up to see Joxer get her to safety as she raised up on her hands and right knee in an attempt to run again just as another fireball exploded next to her as Blaise’s vision turned to black.

Blaise could hear her name being called through the darkness but she couldn’t shake it off until she felt someone help her up. She opened her eyes trying to clear the fogginess to see who was helping her and turned to look as they put her arm around their neck for support.

"Xena?" Blaise asked through her grogginess trying to clear her blurred vision.

"That’s right... I’m here little sister...we’ve got to run!" Xena answered with urgency as she helped support Blaise as the pair began to run.

Blaise moaned in pain with every step she took on her injured leg despite Xena’s support. Xena and Blaise made it into the store room safely to find Ephiny and Joxer. Xena put Blaise on the floor who groaned in pain from the contact as she laid down.

"Blaise!" Ephiny replied with worry as she knelt beside her and brushed her hair off her face.

Xena began to check Blaise’s wounds... "why’s your mouth bleeding?" Xena asked with concern.

"I bit my friggin tongue!" Blaise shouted in pain as she leaned over and spit the blood out.

"That’s better than internal injury’s Blaise." Xena answered as she checked her knee.

"How’s my knee Xena?" Blaise asked as she wiped the blood away from her mouth.

"It’s dislocated Blaise...we have to stabilize it."

"Do it!" Blaise shouted with urgency from the pain in her knee.

"Okay Joxer...I want you to press right here on her knee." Xena explained as Joxer looked at Blaise’s knee and passed out.

"Men!" Ephiny replied in disgust as she shook her head at Joxer... "go ahead Xena... I’ll hold Blaise." Ephiny answered as she moved around to hold Blaise’s hand.

"No Ephiny...you’re not going to be able to hold her down...I’ll have to do it...come here and let me show you what to do." Xena answered as she waved Ephiny over.

Ephiny moved down beside Xena as Blaise inhaled deep breaths calm her breathing and the pain.

"Okay push here." Xena motioned to the outside of her knee... "and pull her leg straight when you do it okay?" Xena asked for confirmation of her instructions.

"Come on just do it...I can’t take the pain any more!" Blaise shouted with anger.

"I’ve got it Xena." Ephiny answered with a worried look on her face.

"All right Blaise... calm down." Xena answered with a soothing voice as she laid Joxer across Blaise’s other leg to keep her from kicking Ephiny when she manipulated her knee.

Xena grabbed Blaise’s arms to brace her... "now... look at me Blaise." Xena replied with a soothing tone in her voice... "concentrate on something pleasant that will take your mind off the pain." Xena answered as she looked into her pain filled blue eyes.

"I can’t... I’m still very upset with her!" Blaise shouted as she glanced up at Ephiny who lowered her head and got her hands in position on Blaise’s leg.

"Okay... then look into my eyes and imagine those are the same color as your new baby’s." Xena answered with a smile.

Blaise looked into Xena’s eyes and let her mind imagine those were her child’s eyes and her breathing calmed while she listened to what Xena was saying.

"The baby has such pretty blue eyes...such a sweet little face." Xena replied softly as she saw a smile appear on Blaise’s face as she stared focused on Xena... "do it Ephiny." Xena replied under her breath for Ephiny to hear her.

Ephiny pushed and pulled Blaise’s leg quickly as her knee went back into place... "aah!" Blaise yelled out in pain as her arms jerked and pulled Xena on top of her.

Xena looked into her sister’s eyes... "you okay?" she asked with concern.

"No...I’m going to be sick!"

Xena moved off of Blaise and helped roll her to the side as she got sick... "feel better?" Xena asked as Blaise finished.

"Yeah...help me sit up."

Ephiny pushed Joxer off of Blaise’s leg as Xena helped Blaise sit up and leaned her against the wall. Blaise rested her head against the wall and took a couple of deep breaths to calm the nausea she still felt.

Xena sat in front of Blaise with her arm across her lap resting on the floor... "here drink some water Blaise." Xena replied as she held the cup up for Blaise to take a sip.

Ephiny wiped the dirt and blood off of Blaise’s face and kissed her forehead softly. Blaise looked at Xena... "did you check Ephiny to make sure they are both okay?" Blaise asked with concern for her family.

Xena looked at Ephiny who gave her a look of assurance that they were okay... "they’re fine Blaise." Xena answered with a comforting smile.

"What kind of God of War will I make when I get injured on the battle field?" Blaise chuckled

"A better one than Ares...he would have ran like a coward and not helped his wife." Xena answered back as she took Blaise’s hand and squeezed it... "are you feeling better?" Xena asked with concern.

Blaise nodded yes and smiled... "how many more times are you going to help me out and clean up my wounds?"

"As many times as it takes...that’s what big sisters are for to look out for their little one’s!" Xena answered with a smile.

"Thanks Xena." Blaise answered with a smile.

"Besides my niece or nephew would never have forgiven me for letting something happen to their mother." Xena teased with a smile.

Blaise laughed as she struggled to sit up straight as Ephiny continued to clean her face. Blaise grabbed her hand to stop her as Xena stood up to attend to Joxer.

"How could you jeopardize our baby’s life by coming here." Blaise asked softly as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes.

Ephiny began to cry.... "I’m sorry Blaise...I was worried about you and I needed to know that you were okay and I didn’t think about the baby."

"But you brought..." Blaise answered with anger and tapered her tone down... "our baby into a war zone." Blaise’s angry blue eyes met Ephiny’s cloudy hazel eyes.

"Blaise...I’m an amazon which you seem to keep forgetting...I’m not a weak woman...I am trained to hunt, fight and kill...I can take care of myself and our child...that’s something you need to realize...I thought we cleared all of this up a long time ago." Ephiny answered with agitation as she jerked her hand loose from Blaise’s grip and walked away with her back to Blaise.

Xena stood with her head down and glanced at Blaise who was struggling to stand up. Xena moved over and helped Blaise up... "I’ll be outside." Xena whispered as Blaise nodded her head in acknowledgment.

Blaise took a step towards Ephiny and winced from the pain but continued to move to her. Blaise stopped behind Ephiny and put her hands on her shoulders as she leaned her head against Ephiny’s who closed her eyes from the comfort she felt from Blaise’s touch... "baby...I’m sorry I yelled at you...please forgive me...I got very scared and I lost sight of the fact that you’re an amazon...a woman who is trained to take care of herself...it’s just that I saw my wife and my child in a dangerous situation and my first reaction was to protect you...please don’t think that I take you being an amazon lightly." Blaise answered as she turned Ephiny towards her hopping to move and keep her weight off her leg.

Ephiny looked into Blaise’s caring blue eyes... "I’m sorry Blaise...you’re right I shouldn’t have come here...I’m not in my peak fighting shape and I jeopardized all of our lives and I was wrong." Ephiny answered as she leaned her head on Blaise’s chest and hugged her.

Blaise kissed her head as she wrapped her arms around her wife and Ephiny jerked her head away from Blaise with a look of astonishment... "did you feel that?" Ephiny asked excited with a smile.

Blaise looked around... "no...what?"

"The baby...it just kicked!" Ephiny answered with excitement... "it did it again!...feel." Ephiny smiled and took Blaise’s hand to place it on the baby who kicked again.

Blaise smiled as her blue eyes watered... "I felt it Eph." Blaise answered with excitement as she kissed Ephiny... "I love you baby." Blaise pulled Ephiny’s head on her shoulder as the baby continued to kick under their hands... "Xena needs to check this out...Xena!" Blaise shouted as Xena ran in flustered.

"What’s wrong?" she asked with worry.

"It’s the baby." Blaise replied with a smile... "it kicked...come here."

Xena approached slowly and put her hand on Ephiny’s stomach... "this is your Auntie Xena baby." Blaise replied as she leaned down to Ephiny’s stomach.

The baby kicked under Xena’s touch as Xena smiled widely causing the warrior princess to become teary eyed... "this is so wonderful." Xena answered with a laugh as she hugged them both... "I am so happy for you...thanks for sharing this moment with me."

"I’m glad you could too ... but what made you come anyway?" Blaise asked confused.

"I was sworn to protect Ephiny remember?...when I found out she left I followed her trail here but something is wrong with Argo so, she beat me here before I could head her off at the pass." Xena explained as Ephiny grinned sheepishly and looked down.

"What’s wrong with Argo?" Blaise asked.

"I’m really not sure... maybe it’s from her getting a little fat from not being out on the road."

"Let’s go take a look." Blaise answered as she put her arm around Ephiny who helped her walk towards the door... " hey, the fighting has stopped." Blaise replied.

"Thank the gods." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Here Ephiny let me take Blaise." Xena replied... "hop on Blaise." Xena answered as she crouched down to give her a piggyback ride and Blaise wrapped her arms around Xena’s neck.

Blaise kissed Xena on the cheek... "hey! What’s that for?" Xena asked agitation.

"Because you’re my sister and I love you...because you helped Ephiny and I out...thank you...why do you always have to be so stoic Xena?...why don’t you allow people into your heart?"

"I guess I feel like I don’t deserve that Blaise." Xena answered with regret.

"You’ve had a tough life Xena and you deserve it...I’m going to make sure you receive it too." Blaise answered as she kissed her cheek again and hugged her tighter.

"Blaise you entered my heart a long time ago and I love you very much." Xena answered with a smile.

"You softy!" Blaise laughed.

"Okay... rides over." Xena answered as she dropped Blaise off by Argo.

Blaise checked Argo over... "what’s the problem girl?" Blaise asked as she checked her heart and her stomach. Blaise looked up over Argo’s back to Xena... "aah...Xena Argo’s pregnant!" Blaise answered with a smile.

"What!" Xena answered with agitation as she moved over to Argo to feel her belly... "she is...I never even considered that!"

Blaise turned her head... " TASMANIAN!" Blaise yelled to Taz whose ears perked up. Ephiny laughed as Blaise limped towards her horse angry as Taz backed away from her. Blaise motioned for him to come to her as she stopped... "come here...I’ve got a bad leg and I can’t chase you." Blaise replied as she pointed to her leg.

"See Argo...I knew we would be in trouble!" Taz replied as she looked over at Argo.

"What can they do to you Taz?...stop worrying baby." Argo answered.

"This is your fault Argo...they’re probably going to make glue out of me!" Taz answered as he moved to Blaise with his head hanging down.

Once he approached Blaise she hugged him and scratched his neck... "you’re gonna be a daddy boy!...we’re going to have kids together but I am mad at you for not waiting though...oh, and from the apple thing awhile ago taking Ephiny’s side instead of mine... but I’ll forgive you." Blaise answered with a smile.

"I told you not to worry Taz." Argo replied.

Taz looked over at her... "you’re a lucky woman!" Taz answered.

"Xena I’ll arrange for another horse for you so, we can get the pregnant women back to the village." Blaise answered with a smile.

"Thanks...you okay girl?" Xena asked with concern as she checked Argo over one more time.

Ephiny walked over to Blaise... "are you coming home?"

Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny and whispered in her ear... "yes...till my knee heals." Blaise replied as she kissed her cheek sending excitement throughout Ephiny.

"I’m so happy Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile and kissed Blaise.

Blaise moved Ephiny’s hair off her face as she stared into her eyes with a loving smile and kissed her lips softly... "me too...let me go get my things and let them know I will be back in a week...Taz down." Blaise ordered as Taz obeyed his order making it easier for Blaise to climb on him.

Blaise rode over to the tent to collect her things and inform Calvin of her plans. Ephiny watched as she exited the tent with Helen approaching her.

"What does that woman want?" Ephiny asked with agitation.

"What she can’t have." Xena answered as she looked at the pair.

Ephiny turned to Xena... "you speak from experience?"

"Oh, yeah....that’s why I’m staying here."

Ephiny saw Helen grab Blaise and kiss her on the cheek... "I already warned her about my wife...doesn’t she know she’s not suppose to anger a pregnant amazon woman?" Ephiny asked with agitation and jealousy.

"Easy Ephiny...Blaise didn’t do anything but get a kiss on the cheek."

"Yeah...that’s what we saw...but what happens with what we didn’t see?" Ephiny asked with jealousy as she looked at Xena.

"Ephiny...trust Blaise...she loves you...you know that."

"I know...I’m just being stupid and jealous." Ephiny answered irritated with herself.

"You have nothing to worry about because Blaise is 100% prime time in love with you!...besides she has pledged her life, heart and love to you, not to mention just saving your life."

"You’re right...it must be these hormones." Ephiny answered ashamed of herself.

"I wish I was able to have contained myself with Helen as much as Blaise has done." Xena answered softly with her head down.

"Xena...you mean?" Ephiny asked in amazement as she looked at Helen and then back to Xena.

"Can we just drop this for now Ephiny?" Xena asked as she looked at Ephiny with a stern look.

"Sure...if you want to."

"I do." Xena answered as Joxer approached with another horse for Xena to ride... "thanks Joxer."

"You’re welcome." Joxer answered as he rode over to attend to Blaise.

"You know Ephiny... he really has made a dramatic change for the better...I’m really proud of him." Xena replied with amazement as she watched Joxer gather Blaise’s things and attach them to his horse.

"Blaise has done wonders for him Xena and he’s very loyal to her...he saved my life today and I’ll not forget that as I’m sure Blaise won’t either."

"Hey Joxer!...thanks for helping Ephiny today...you were quite a hero and I won’t forget that...thank you." Blaise replied with a smile as she put her arm around his shoulder for a partial hug.

"Blaise...I want you to know I’ll be there for you anytime...I appreciate everything you’ve done for me." he answered appreciative.

"You had it all along dude...you just needed some refinement." Blaise laughed as Taz bowed for her to mount him with the pair heading over to Xena and Ephiny.

"Hey...lady...going my way?" Blaise asked with a smile and a wink to Ephiny.

"If you don’t mind a pregnant woman tagging along." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Well...I don’t mind and hopefully my wife won’t get too jealous...down boy!" Blaise answered as Taz knelt down allowing Blaise to dismount and help Ephiny onto Taz. Blaise slid in behind Ephiny once she was on the horse and took Taz’s reigns... "easy boy...up." Blaise commanded as Taz rose slowly... "get your woman boy and let’s get going."

Taz looked at Argo to see that she was following as the group walked out of the city to make their way back to the amazon village.

"So, Blaise...tell me about Helen." Ephiny asked with dismay.

Blaise moved her head to Ephiny’s ear and whispered... "She wants me but I told her she couldn’t have me because my heart belonged to two others already." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"Oh, really... two huh?" Ephiny answered as she leaned back against Blaise’s body.

"Yeah...my very beautiful wife and our child that she is carrying." Blaise answered with pride as she slid her hand over Ephiny’s stomach to feel the baby.

"That’s so sweet baby." Ephiny answered as she put her hand on top of Blaise’s.

"You weren’t jealous where you?"

"Well...yes...I was." Ephiny answered.

"Why would you be jealous baby?"

"Oh, I don’t know...I guess I saw a beautiful woman by you and because I’m so fat now... I thought...well...Aah." Ephiny answered as Blaise interrupted her.

"Baby, you’re not fat and Helen is no where near half the woman you are and besides I’m in love with you." Blaise answered as she kissed her cheek.

"You’re just saying that because you’re biased."

"No...I’m not just saying that Eph...even if we weren’t together I would still think the same."

Ephiny smiled and leaned back kissing Blaise on the cheek... "I love you baby." Ephiny responded with a smile.

"I love you too Eph...now, snuggle up to me and try to get some rest...you must be tired." Blaise suggested as she wrapped her arms around Ephiny tighter.

"That sounds wonderful." Ephiny answered as she leaned her head back into Blaise’s shoulder and closed her eyes enjoying the warm and comforting feeling of Blaise’s arms wrapped around her.

After riding for a couple of candle marks the group came closer to a small village.

"Hey!...what’s that?" Joxer asked as he pointed off in the distance.

Xena and Blaise looked up at the same time... "the village must be on fire!" Xena answered as she heeled her horse to a gallop towards the village.

"Eph...wake up honey." Blaise replied as she gently woke her.

"What?" Ephiny asked confused.

"We have to get moving quickly...hang on." Blaise explained as she heeled Taz to a gallop as did Joxer with his horse.

They arrived to find the small village being raided... "Joxer!...get water and help those people put the fire out!" Blaise shouted and pointed as she dismounted Taz forgetting about her leg. Blaise jumped down and hit the ground in pain as her leg gave out on her... "by the gods!...Aah.!" Blaise yelled in frustration.

"Blaise!" Ephiny shouted with concern as she attempted to dismount Taz.

"You stay right there Ephiny!" Blaise demanded as she pointed to her and pulled herself up to stand. Blaise saw Xena dispatching the raiders with a look of complete enjoyment and turned to see Joker helping the villagers with the fire.

"Someone please!...help my children!" a woman screamed.

Ephiny began to dismount Taz... "no! Ephiny you stay right there!...you’re not to move understand?" Blaise shouted... "I’ll get them."

"Blaise you can hardly stand on that leg." Ephiny screamed.

Blaise grabbed the saddlehorn along with the back of the saddle and lifted herself partially up on Taz... "think of the baby Eph...please." Blaise pleaded as she looked up at her.

Ephiny looked down into Blaise’s eyes and could see she was concerned for her... "okay...what can I do to help from here?"

"Hold me...Taz go!" Blaise shouted as Ephiny held onto Blaise’s vest to hold her in place as she reigned Taz as close as possible.

Blaise got down and moved towards the burning hut... "get back Ephiny!" Blaise shouted as Taz took off away from the hut to get Ephiny to safety.

"How many?" Blaise asked as she hopped towards the hut.

"Two! ...please...help them!" the woman cried.

Blaise hopped into the burning hut to find the children who were crying in the far corner of the hut. Blaise struggled to get to the kids who were terrified... "come on...I’m here to help you." Blaise reassured them as she picked them up in her arms.

The kids continued to cry as Blaise struggled to walk through the searing pain she felt in her knee and the pain she felt in her lungs from the smoke. Blaise finally exited the hut and gasped for some fresh air as she took the children to their mom and out of danger.

"Oh, my babies!...thank you so much." the woman replied with happiness as she hugged Blaise.

Xena rounded up the raiders and the other fires were under control as Ephiny rode up to help Blaise who was coughing from the smoke she inhaled.

"You okay baby?" Ephiny asked as she knelt down to Blaise who had sat down to catch her breath.

"Oh, never better honey!" Blaise gasped in response.

"Baby, you just had to be a hero didn’t you." Ephiny answered with worry as she wiped Blaise’s face off.

"Oh, yeah....that’s me." Blaise joked.

"Thank you!" the children screamed as they both ran to Blaise and tackled her with hugs.

Blaise fell on her back as the kids hugged her and laughed... "you’re welcome." Blaise answered with a chuckle as she sat up with the kids sitting close to her.

"Are you Xena?" the little girl asked eagerly.

"No...but I know her very well." Blaise answered with a smile.

"You do!" the little girl squealed with excitement.

"She’s my sister." Blaise answered with a smile as the little boy was fascinated by Blaise’s earring.

"This looks like the one Ares... God of War wears." he replied with excitement.

Blaise looked up at Ephiny giving her a look of "should I tell him he’s my father" as Ephiny nodded yes.

"Well...he’s my father and he gave me that earring."

"Your father is Ares?!" the boy asked with amazement.

"And your sister is Xena?" the little girl asked in equal amazement.

"Yes...they’re both my family." Blaise answered with a smile.

"I want to serve Ares when I’m older." the boy answered proudly.

Blaise’s smile left her face as she looked up at Ephiny and then back to the boy... "how about you just enjoy your childhood and not worry about serving my father until you’re older." Blaise asked hoping the boy would eventually forget about serving Ares once he was older.

"I want to serve Ares and I’m ready now." the boy answered matter of factly.

Blaise and Ephiny laughed... "I’ll make you a deal...I’ll give you my earring if you promise not to think of serving my father until you’re a grown man and if you continue with your studies."

"Deal!" the boy answered with excitement.

Blaise gave the boy her earring... "you drive a hard bargain...say what’s your name?" Blaise asked with a smile at the boy’s precociousness.

"My name is Daniel." the boy answered as he examined the earring.

"Well...Daniel my name is Blaise and it’s nice to meet you." Blaise answered with a smile as they clasped hands... "what’s your name?" Blaise asked as she looked at the little girl.

"Sera." she answered with an adorable smile... "is that Gabrielle?" Sera whispered to Blaise as she pointed to Ephiny.

"No." Blaise chuckled... "that’s my wife Ephiny...she’s Gabrielle’s regent."

"She is!" Sera exclaimed with excitement as she put her hands on Blaise’s chest and looked into her eyes with wonderment... "I want to be an amazon one day!"

"Ephiny I have a recruit for you." Blaise replied with a laugh as she looked up at Ephiny.

"We would be happy to have another fine amazon in our village Sera." Ephiny answered with a smile as she tussled the girls hair.

"That’s great!...can I come to your village sometime and play with your baby?"

"Sure...anytime." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Blaise...can you introduce me to Xena sometime?" Sera asked with a whisper and excitement as her brother continued to try and figure out how he was going to wear the earring.

"How about now?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"She won’t hurt me will she?" Sera asked with worry.

Blaise and Ephiny laughed... "no only nasty warlords...hey, Xena!...someone wants to meet you." Blaise shouted with a smile.

"By the gods...that’s her!." Sera exclaimed with excitement.

"What’s up?" Xena asked as she strolled over to Blaise.

"Seems you have a fan...this is Sera and she wanted to meet you."

"Really?" Xena asked with a smile as she knelt down to clasp hands with Sera... "hello Sera...I’m Xena it’s nice to meet you."

Sera was wide eyed as Xena spoke to her and had a big smile on her face... "thank you for helping our village...do you think you could ask Gabrielle if I could be an amazon when I’m older?"

Xena chuckled... "sure...she could always use another great amazon...but you should talk to Ephiny because she is the one who oversees the new recruits and she takes Gabrielle’s place as queen when she is gone from the village." Xena explained with a smile.

"Will you please remember that I want to be an amazon?" Sera asked with excitement.

"Children stop bothering everyone!" their mother ordered as she looked at everyone... "I’m sorry they get excited especially when they talk about their heros."

"It’s no problem...their great!" Blaise answered with a smile.

"Sera...I’m going to give you my arm grieve and when your mother says you can begin your amazon training you bring that to me okay?" Ephiny explained with a smile.

"Thank you!" Sera replied as she hugged Ephiny then Blaise and Xena.

Daniel hugged Blaise tightly... "maybe I can serve you one day instead of your father."

"Hey!...remember our deal." Blaise answered with a smile and a pat on his back.

Daniel clasped hands with Xena and Ephiny as he thanked them... "bye." the children replied as they ran towards the other villagers to show their gifts.

"Thank you all...you have been very kind." the mother replied as she turned to join her family.

Xena helped Blaise up... "let’s go Joxer!" Xena shouted to him as he was busy speaking with some of the villagers.

Blaise helped Ephiny up on Taz and then mounted him in her usual position behind Ephiny.

Everyone waved to the villagers as they headed out of site. Ephiny put both of her hands on Blaise’s... one of which was rested on her stomach and leaned back.

"Baby...you were great with those kids back there."

"Well...thanks but it’s because I love kids and I can’t wait to hold ours in my arms." Blaise answered with excitement at the thought of holding her own child as she kissed Ephiny.

"You’re going to be a great mother."

"So, are you baby." Blaise answered and hugged her wife tighter.

The group made their way into the village arriving in the middle of the night... "I’ll get the horses for everyone." Joxer offered.

"Thanks dude...we appreciate it." Blaise answered as she steered Taz as close to the hut as possible and would have had Taz bring them right into the hut if she was positive Ephiny wouldn’t have a fit... "Taz down." Blaise ordered as her trusty stallion obeyed her command.

Blaise slid off Taz and helped her pregnant wife off the horse as Ephiny’s eyes met Blaise’s as she reached the ground.

"It’s okay if I help my pregnant wife occasionally isn’t it?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"I think I can allow that." Ephiny answered with a smile as she kissed Blaise... "as long as you don’t go overboard with it." Ephiny smirked and poked Blaise in the stomach.

"Up Taz!" Ephiny ordered as he obied.

"What’s the deal between you two Eph?" Blaise asked with disbelief.

"Maybe he likes me." Ephiny laughed and pinched Blaise’s cheek as she entered the hut.

Blaise looked at Taz in disbelief who put his head down... "first the apples now this...what happened to your loyalty my friend?" Blaise teased as Taz nodded his head up and down... "oh, go find your woman!" Blaise answered as she patted his butt and laughed.

Blaise hopped into their hut trying to keep her weight off the bad leg and saw Ephiny washing her face with her back to Blaise. Blaise limped up behind her and wrapped her arms around her wife as she snuggled her face against Ephiny’s... "I’ve missed you baby." Blaise whispered as she kissed Ephiny’s cheek softly.

"I’ve missed you more!" Ephiny teased.

Blaise ran soft kisses down Ephiny’s neck as she moved her hands up Ephiny’s robe to unlace it. Ephiny responded to Blaise’s kissing with light moans as Blaise unlaced the robe lower and Ephiny put her hands on Blaise’s to stop her.

"Not right now Blaise...I’ll be back." Ephiny answered nervously and grabbed her clothing as she left the hut.

Blaise watched Ephiny leave the hut confused by the situation and hopped over to the bed. She sat down and took her boots off followed by the remainder of her clothes as she laid back on the bed.

"This feels so good." Blaise replied out loud with a happy sigh as she heard Ephiny enter the hut and rolled to her side propping her head up on her hand to watch her wife distinguish all the candles except the ones by the bed.

Ephiny approached the bed... "Ephiny what in tartarus do you have on?"

"What Blaise?" Ephiny asked as she glanced at her attire as Blaise sat up swinging her legs over the edge of the bed to face Ephiny.

"What is that outfit doing on you?...you look like an old maid." Blaise asked with sarcasm.

"It’s a nightgown Blaise." Ephiny answered with irritation.

Blaise put her hands on Ephiny’s hips and pulled her closer as she looked up in her eyes... "what have you done with my sexy wife?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile.

"Your sexy wife is no longer sexy...she’s fat, bloated, irritable and unattractive." Ephiny answered with seriousness.

Blaise’s smile left her face when she realized Ephiny was upset... "hey, come here." Blaise answered softly as she pulled Ephiny down on her lap.

"Blaise... I’m going to hurt your leg." Ephiny replied as she looked down at her leg.

"I’m fine baby." Blaise answered as she wrapped her arms around her wife... "what’s going on Eph?" Blaise asked with concern.

"Just what I told you Blaise...I’m fat, unattractive and no longer sexy for you."

"Ephiny...I find you incredibly attractive and sexy just as you are now baby...well, except for that nightgown." Blaise smiled and got a slight smile out of Ephiny.

"You still find me attractive?" Ephiny asked.

"Baby...of course, I do but I didn’t fall in love with your looks in the first place...I fell in love with that wonderful person inside of you." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny’s shoulder... "you’re carrying our child honey and I find that to be very sexy...I want you to know how much that means to me babe... but I don’t think it’s coming out right." Blaise answered as she pondered her thoughts.

Ephiny looked at Blaise... "you’re not just saying that are you?" Ephiny asked with some insecurity.

"No Eph...I’m so overwhelmed with pride, joy and love for you that I can hardly contain myself...I mean you’re having our baby Eph." Blaise answered in awe as she looked down at Ephiny’s stomach and placed a soft kiss on it... "how could I not think you’re beautiful just as you are?...I love you." Blaise answered as she looked up at Ephiny who had tears in her eyes and played with Blaise’s hair with her hand which rested on the back of Blaise’s neck.

"I’m sorry Blaise." Ephiny answered as Blaise wiped her tears away... "I love you too." Ephiny answered as she leaned down and kissed Blaise... "I worried that you wouldn’t find me attractive when you saw me naked so, I tried to hide it."

"Hey, since when does an amazon become self conscious about their bodies?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile.

"When her hormones from her pregnancy are going wild." Ephiny answered with a smile as she kissed Blaise again and stood before Blaise feeling more confidant as she unlaced her robe dropping it to the ground.

"Now...there’s my wife." Blaise answered with a smile as Ephiny moved closer to her and slid her hands through Blaise’s hair resting them on her neck.

Blaise moved her hands around Ephiny’s naked body and placed gentle kisses on her protruding abdomen as she moved her kiss up her body past her breasts to her mouth for a deep passionate kiss... "I love you baby." Blaise replied through her fervent kiss.

"Take me to bed Blaise." Ephiny whispered in her ear as she hugged Blaise.

Blaise lifted Ephiny gently and laid her on the bed as she crawled in bed next to her wife holding her in her arms tightly while softly kissing her neck.

Xena helped Joxer with the horses and wanted to make sure her now pregnant mare was well taken care of by being safe in her stall with plenty of hay. Xena took a bath after attending to Argo because she knew Gabrielle would have no part of smelling warrior sweat in her bed.

Xena entered their hut and put her gear down... "Xena...is that you?" Gabrielle asked startled out of her sleep as she reached for her staff next to the bed.

"It’s me baby...how did I wake you?...usually you sleep like a log."

"I haven’t been able to sleep very well lately."

"My wife not able to sleep?...has tartarus frozen over?" Xena joked as she crawled into bed with her bard.

Gabrielle grabbed onto Xena’s hands as her arms wrapped around Gabrielle... "I missed you honey and I couldn’t sleep." Gabrielle answered as she kissed Xena’s hand.

"I missed you baby." Xena answered with a kiss to Gabrielle’s cheek.

"Is Ephiny okay?" Gabrielle asked feeling safe in her warriors arms.

"Yes...but Blaise dislocated her knee pretty bad and she’s back her to mend."

"What happened?" Gabrielle asked with concern.

"Everything’s alright darling...in the morning...oh, Argo’s pregnant as well." Xena answered with a yawn as she snuggled closer to her bard and fell asleep.

"What is this everyone’s pregnant but me!...Xena?...Xena?" Gabrielle asked only to find her warrior was fast asleep.

Blaise continued her assault of kisses on Ephiny’s neck and moved her hands to Ephiny’s breasts to caress them.... "Is it okay if we make love baby?" Blaise asked as she stopped her kisses and looked into Ephiny’s eyes with concern.

"Of course, honey why would you ask?" Ephiny chuckled.

"Well...I don’t want to hurt you or the baby." Blaise answered with embarrassment.

Ephiny smiled at Blaise..."we will be fine honey...stop worrying you won’t hurt us."

"Are you sure?" Blaise asked looking for confirmation.

"I’m positive babe...we can make love right up until I deliver our child honey..I want to know how it is that the future god of war can be so sweet, gentle, caring and loving?" Ephiny asked as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair and gazed into her blue eyes which flickered from the candles glowing.

"The god of war persona is something I keep hidden which I would rather you not see... besides you bring out those wonderful qualities in me because I love you with everything I have honey." Blaise answered and leaned down to kiss Ephiny.

"Now...the challenge you face is making love to me while I lay on my side because it’s hard for me to lay on my back."

"Like my sister...I have many skills." Blaise answered seductively with a sexy smile as she gently kissed Ephiny’s breast. Blaise looked up at Ephiny and gave her a sly grin... "your breasts are larger baby."

Ephiny smiled... "those are for the baby."

"You mean I have to share?" Blaise asked with a smile as she kissed her breast again.

"No...you will have to take a leave of absence once the baby is born."

"Seeing as how it’s for my bab...our baby." Blaise grinned as she corrected herself... "I will make the sacrifice."

Ephiny laughed... "would you be quite and make love to me!"

"Oh, I’m sorry... I’m no longer in the mood." Blaise laughed.

Ephiny grabbed Blaise’s face and pulled her close... " I guess I’ll have to get you in the mood then." Ephiny answered kissing Blaise passionately as Blaise slid her hand down Ephiny’s body and spread Ephiny’s leg resting it on her own.

Blaise slid her hand to Ephiny’s sex and moved her finger down her wet clit and slowly entered her wet opening.

"Hmmm.. Blaise that feels so good." Ephiny moaned as Blaise moved her finger in and out of her opening faster as Ephiny moved her hips with Blaise’s movements while Blaise kissed and lightly sucked her breast.

"Oh...Blaise...baby...I love it when you touch me." Ephiny moaned as she slid her hand down to Blaise’s wet sex.

"Oh, Eph." Blaise replied softly with pleasure as Ephiny touched her.

"Blaise...you’re so wet... you feel so good baby." Ephiny whispered.

"You make me that way baby just by looking at me." Blaise moaned as she moved her finger in and out of Ephiny’s opening faster as she pressed her hips against Ephiny’s hand to enjoy her movements.

"Oh...Blaise...yes...aah.!" Ephiny moaned in ecstasy from her orgasm as Blaise left her fingers inside as she constricted and released around Blaise’s finger.

Ephiny moved her finger faster as Blaise matched the movement with her hips. Blaise slowly removed her finger from Ephiny as her sex stopped throbbing. Ephiny felt Blaise’s heavy breathing against her neck as she continued to touch Blaise... "that’s it baby." Ephiny whispered.

"Oh, Eph!" Blaise shouted as she sucked on Ephiny’s neck releasing her orgasm and gasped for a breath... "oh, baby you drive me wild!" Blaise replied as she crawled over Ephiny to lay on her side and face her... "I love you Eph." Blaise replied as she brushed Ephiny’s hair off her face and kissed her.

"I love you Blaise." Ephiny answered as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair.

"You know... I love it when you run your fingers through my hair becasue it feels so freaking good!" Blaise answered as she laid on her back and cuddled up as close as she could to Ephiny.

Ephiny smiled and continued to fun her fingers through Blaise’s hair as she placed a soft kiss on her cheek. Blaise closed her eyes to enjoy the moment and leaned her hand against Ephiny’s leg as Ephiny slid her arm underneath Blaise’s neck cuddling closer to her wife... "goodnight baby." Ephiny whispered with a kiss to Blaise’s cheek.

Blaise gave no response and Ephiny leaned her head up to look at Blaise. Ephiny heard the soft, relaxed breathing Blaise normally does when she sleeps. Ephiny smiled and lightly kissed her warrior’s lips as she laid her head down on her chest to fall asleep.

Ephiny woke and reached for Blaise who was not laying next to her. Blaise had managed to slide down the bed and had her face cuddled up to Ephiny’s stomach with her arm wrapped tightly around Ephiny’s waist.

Since Ephiny became pregnant no matter what position Blaise fell asleep in she always ended up cuddled against Ephiny’s stomach. Ephiny ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair to wake her ... "hey, baby." she replied softly to not startle her... "I need to get up."

"Huh?" Blaise answered confused as she looked up at Ephiny... "are you okay?" Blaise asked with worry as she cleared her throat and looked at Ephiny with sleepy blue eyes.

"I’m fine...nature calls honey." Ephiny answered begrudgingly knowing she did not want to have to get up out of the snuggly confines of their warm bed to make a trip out to the outhouse but she wasn’t able to make it through the night without making one trip since she became pregnant.

Blaise moved away from Ephiny so she could get up... "do you want me to go with you?"

"No...I’ll be fine...go back to sleep." Ephiny answered as she put her robe and sandals on to make her nightly trip.

"Are you sure?"

"Blaise." Ephiny answered with raised eyebrows and her hands on her hips.

"Okay... okay...I’m just trying to be a caring wife." Blaise answered as she put her hand up to get her point across.

"I appreciate it but I’ll manage fine...go back to sleep... you need it." Ephiny answered as she headed for the door.

Blaise moved up to her pillow and stuck her head under it... "By the gods...how am I going to make it through three more months of these hormones?" Blaise thought as she fell back to sleep.

Ephiny came back to their hut, undressed and climbed back in bed to find Blaise laying naked sprawled out prone on the bed with her head under the pillow. Ephiny chuckled at how peaceful her warrior looked as she peeked under the pillow and knew she wouldn’t stay that way for the rest of the night.

Ephiny laid on her side pushing the pillow off of Blaise and snuggled up to her as she began to play with Blaise’s wavy hair thinking about how much she loved Blaise. She thought about how peaceful and content she looked while she slept. Ephiny felt an overwhelming happiness as she watched Blaise sleep.

Ephiny opened her eyes and reached for Blaise who of course, was not there. Ephiny looked down the bed to see if Blaise was in her usual spot and found her to be gone.

"Blaise." Ephiny replied as she sat up and looked around the hut as she wiped the sleep out of her eyes.

Ephiny found it unusual for Blaise to be gone and got up to get dressed to head out and find her warrior. After dressing Ephiny checked the food hut with no luck and saw Gabrielle heading towards their office.

"Gabrielle!" Ephiny called out to get her attention.

Gabrielle turned to Ephiny and smiled as Ephiny approached her... "hey, Ephiny!...how’s my niece or nephew?" Gabrielle asked with a smile as she rubbed her hand on Ephiny’s belly.

"The baby’s fine Gabrielle...have you seen Blaise?" Ephiny asked with agitation.

"Aah...well." Gabrielle stammered as she was taken back by Ephiny’s gruff approach... "I would guess she’s down at the lake with Xena."

"Doing what?" Ephiny asked as she put her hands on her hips.

"Probably fishing." Gabrielle answered sarcastically.

"Fishing?!" Ephiny asked disgusted.

"Is everything okay Ephiny?" Gabrielle asked with concern.

"Oh, yeah...never better." Ephiny answered as she walked away.

"Oh, Ephiny!...don’t forget we have a council meeting after lunch today."

Ephiny stopped and looked back at Gabrielle... "perfect!" Ephiny answered disgusted as she headed down to the lake leaving Gabrielle mystified by her actions.

"Xena!...that was my fish!" Blaise shouted as she looked her sister in the eye with determination.

"No way!" Xena snapped back.

"Way!"...I punched it!" Blaise answered as she moved closer to Xena.

"Yeah...but I had a hold of it!" Xena answered sarcastically as she stared her sister down.

"Blaise!" Ephiny shouted.

Xena and Blaise both cringed and looked on shore to Ephiny... "she looks pissed Blaise...what did you do?" Xena asked as she looked back at Blaise.

"I don’t know yet but from the looks of it I’m about to find out...could you just tell her I drowned because I don’t think I want to go on shore to face her...she’s really pissed."

"Hmmm...she’s already seen you so you can’t go with plan Alpha how about plan Beta?" Xena teased.

"Blaise!" Ephiny shouted as she took her hands off her hips and held them out with disgust wondering what was taking her so long to respond.

"Would you hold me?" Blaise whined with a make believe scared look on her face as Xena laughed as they looked at each other... "tell me again why I decided to get joined?"

"Because you love her very much and just remember that... like you will remember this is my fish." Xena answered with a mischievous grin on her face as she held the fish in Blaise’s face.

"Oh, man!...I’ll get you back for that one." Blaise answered as she swam toward shore. Blaise limped out of the water and picked up her crutch Xena made for her as she hobbled over to Ephiny. Blaise ran her fingers through her hair to remove the excess water from it as she approached her wife.

"Hey, baby...what’s up?" Blaise asked sweetly as she leaned toward Ephiny for a kiss.

"What are you doing?" Ephiny snapped.

"Trying to kiss you and doing a little fishing." Blaise answered as she stood before Ephiny dripping wet in her sports bra and boxer shorts.

"I can see that Blaise!" Ephiny answered in disgust and a raise of her eyebrows.

"What’s wrong babe?" Blaise asked as she held Ephiny’s hand to calm her down while toweling off with her free hand.

"We were suppose to have breakfast together this morning!"

"Aah...I’m sorry...I didn’t remember you telling me we had a breakfast date this morning...besides it’s almost lunch honey." Blaise answered confused.

"I didn’t think I had to tell you Blaise...we always have breakfast together." Ephiny answered with disappointment as she looked out over the lake.

"Hey, honey." Blaise answered in a soothing voice as she put her hands on her arms... "I’m sorry...how about if we have a picnic just the two of us?" Blaise asked with a smile as she rubbed her hands on Ephiny’s arms.

Ephiny turned back to Blaise with a smile... "that sounds wonderful."

"Did I tell you how beautiful you are today?" Blaise answered with a sexy smile.

"Are you trying to get on my good side so, I’m not as mad at you by flashing that sexy smile or yours?"

"Is it working?" Blaise answered with the same smile as she peered into Ephiny’s hazel eyes with her own blue while leaning in closer to her.

"Keep talking." Ephiny answered softly with anticipation of a kiss from Blaise.

"You’re absolutely beautiful baby." Blaise answered in a sexy voice as she moved her lips closer to Ephiny’s pushing a stray blond curl off her face as Ephiny’s mouth watered with anticipation from the impending kiss as she never broke her eye contact with Blaise’s’s sexy blue eyes... "have I ever told you how much I love to kiss your sexy lips?" Blaise asked as she traced the outline of her lips with her finger and softly kissed them as Ephiny wrapped her arms tightly around Blaise’s neck to deepen the kiss from her lover.

Blaise broke the kiss and smiled as Ephiny wanted more... "you’re such a tease Blaise but you know just what to say to make me feel better don’t you." Ephiny replied with a smile as she pressed her lips against Blaise’s for another kiss.

"I speak the truth babe...now...you grab a blanket and pillows while I get our food okay?"

"Deal...let’s get going because I’m starved." Ephiny answered as she put her hand in Blaise’s.

Blaise turned to Xena who had exited the lake and was getting her armor put back on... "I’ll catch you later sis."

"Yeah later...you two should get a room you know." Xena teased as she looked up with a sly grin.

"Did you take good notes on how to properly romance your wife." Blaise teased as Ephiny squeezed her hand and gave her a sideways glance.

"Whatever Blaise." Xena sneered as she held up the big fish and mouthed... "my fish!" as she smiled at Blaise.

Blaise shook her head and turned back to look at Ephiny who was picking up Blaise’s clothes and didn’t see the exchange between the two. Blaise and Ephiny headed off towards the village as Blaise struggled to walk with her crutch while she held Ephiny’s hand.

"Let me put my clothes on." Blaise replied as she stopped and slipped her pants on, then her shirt.

"I liked seeing you dressed as you were honey." Ephiny answered with a wink and a pat on the butt for Blaise.

"Do you want your amazons checking me out?" Blaise teased with a sexy smile.

"Like I said...I like you in your clothes." Ephiny laughed as Blaise leaned down to kiss her.

The pair made their way back to the village... "I’ll see you in a few baby." Blaise replied with a wink and a smile as she watched Ephiny walk into their hut to retrieve the pillows and blanket.

Blaise gathered food and water for their lunch placing it in a basket she found in the hut.

"Hello Blaise."

Blaise turned to respond... "Solari." Blaise answered as an acknowledgment and then turned back to her task at hand.

"Aah...how’s your leg?" Solari asked with nervous tension as she looked down.

"It’s better." Blaise answered with abruptness as she continued to pack the basket without looking at Solari.

"Blaise...I worked everything out with Ephiny and I appreciate you not saying anything to her or Gabrielle."

"Solari...I think we have already finished this discussion a long time ago." Blaise answered with an uncomfortable feeling towards Solari.

"I...I know...I just wanted you to know that I spoke to Ephiny." Solari stammered.

"So, you said." Blaise answered sternly as she gathered the basket and turned to leave as Solari put her hand on Blaise’s arm to stop her.

Blaise gave Solari a look of animosity and glanced down at Solari’s hand on her arm.

Solari took her hand off of Blaise’s arm... "Blaise I’m sorry...I really want us to be friends again...I want you to trust me."

"That’s something you’re gonna have to earn Solari." Blaise answered as she made her way to the door and exited.

"Could you please give me a chance?...I’m really trying." Solari asked with sadness.

Blaise stopped and looked back at Solari who stood next to her..."okay..I’ll give you more of a chance than what I have...but only for the sake of Ephiny." Blaise answered with a slight smile.

"Well...it’s a start...thanks...aah...some of my trainees would love it if you would stop by for an archery lesson later today.

Ephiny saw the two talking and stormed over to Blaise’s side.

"Aah...sure...I suppose I could show them a thing or two." Blaise answered as she looked back at Ephiny who had slid her arm into Blaise’s and kissed her shoulder letting Solari know that Blaise was hers.

"Are you ready baby?" Ephiny asked as she gave Solari a dirty look... "don’t you have some trainees to attend too?" Ephiny asked as she raised her eyebrows.

"Yes...I do...I need to get back." Solari stammered uncomfortably as Ephiny kissed Blaise’s shoulder continuing her if looks could kill look at Solari.

Solari put her head down and walked off towards the training area... "what did she want?" Ephiny asked with agitation as she watched her leave.

"Only to apologize." Blaise answered.

"Oh, I’m sure that’s all it was." Ephiny answered sarcastically and with disgust as she led Blaise away. Blaise looked perplexed at the way Ephiny behaved while Solari was around considering they had patched up their differences.

The pair made it to the lake and Ephiny laid their blanket out under a tree as Blaise put the basket down and began to take the food out. Ephiny sat on the blanket leaning against the tree and stretched her legs out as Blaise moved up towards Ephiny sitting facing her.

Blaise put her hand on the other side of Ephiny to support her body weight and stretched her legs out as she leaned in towards Ephiny and kissed her. Blaise leaned back and smiled... "what would you like to eat my love?"

Ephiny looked the food over... "do you have any mutton and yogurt?"

Blaise looked at Ephiny with her lips parted and curled her lip up in disgust... "are you serious?"

"I have an overwhelming craving for the two of those foods together."

"Aah...I didn’t bring any mutton Eph... sorry...I didn’t think of that combination... " Blaise answered with disbelief at Ephiny’s food choice.

"How about pickles and yogurt then?"

Blaise gave the same strange look then gave a smile... "that I have... but are you sure that’s what you want?"

"Oh, yeah bring it on!" Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Okay...it’s your stomach." Blaise answered as she leaned over and gave Ephiny her food choice. Blaise broke off some bread and cheese for herself as she leaned back resting on her arm and put a piece of cheese in her mouth.

Blaise watched Ephiny dip the pickle in the yogurt and then eat it. Blaise stopped chewing in disbelief from the food conncotion she was eating and swallowed her cheese with a gulp.

"What?" Ephiny asked as she looked at Blaise.

"That’s disgusting honey!" Blaise answered with a smile.

"Don’t look at me...talk to your child...the baby must like that combination." Ephiny answered with a smile as she pointed to her stomach.

Blaise leaned down towards Ephiny’s stomach... "do you like pickles and yogurt baby?" Blaise replied in babytalk... "it’s yuckee!" Blaise chuckled as she glanced up at Ephiny with a smile as she kissed her stomach.

Ephiny gave her a smirk..."yeah...yeah." she replied as she drank some water.

Blaise sat up and moved closer to Ephiny... "are you mad at me for some reason?" Blaise asked as she positioned herself in front of Ephiny and put her hand on the opposite side of Ephiny to brace herself.

"No why?" Ephiny asked between gulps of water.

"You just seem like your pissed about something."

"Blaise." Ephiny answered as she put her hand on Blaise’s cheek and looked into her piercing blue eyes... "I’m pregnant and irritable that’s all." Ephiny answered in a low tone... "stop worrying and enjoy this beautiful, sunny day... okay?"

Blaise glanced at Ephiny’s hand and raised her hand to meet her parting lips as she placed a soft kiss on her palm. Blaise lightly brushed her tongue along her hand followed by a kiss. Blaise looked at Ephiny as she lightly stroked her thumb along Blaise’s face.

"Are you happy Eph?" Blaise asked with concern.

"I’m very happy baby." Ephiny answered with a smile.

Blaise searched her eyes for the truth as she leaned closer to Ephiny who parted her lips to meet Blaise’s. Blaise stopped and looked into Ephiny’s eyes again before pressing her lips against Ephiny’s for a sensual kiss with Ephiny sliding her tongue past Blaise’s lips as both tongues met exploring one another.

Ephiny maneuvered her hand in behind Blaise’s neck and ran her fingers through her black wavy hair. Blaise moved closer to Ephiny and wrapped her arms around her lover as they continued their passionate kiss.

"Ow!" Ephiny exclaimed as she broke their kiss.

"What did I do?" Blaise asked with worry.

"Nothing honey...the baby gave me one good kick." Ephiny answered as she rubbed her belly.

"I think the baby is jealous." Blaise answered with a smile as she leaned down and kissed Ephiny’s stomach... "are you gonna be jealous like your mommie?" Blaise asked as she winked at Ephiny with Ephiny smiling and running her fingers through Blaise’s hair.

Blaise laid her head on Ephiny’s lap moving onto her side to face Ephiny. Blaise put her hand on her stomach as Ephiny placed hers on top of Blaise’s... "I guess I should tell the baby of the family it’s going to be getting into huh?"

"Go ahead honey." Ephiny answered with a smile as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair with her free hand.

"Well...let’s see your great grandfather is Zeus the god of all gods and just between us he’s not as tough as everyone says he is." Blaise chuckled as she checked the skies for any of Zeus’ thunderbolts... "your great grandmother is Hera the queen of the gods..she’s pretty cool as long as you stay on her good side...then there’s your grandfather Ares... God of War." Blaise replied with disgust.

"Aah...Blaise let’s just leave it at that okay?...let’s not overwhelm the baby in one day especially with your father."

"Good idea babe...we don’t want our son to be scared of entering our world." Blaise answered with a smile.

"A son?...I never really considered us as having a boy Blaise." Ephiny answered sternly.

"Really?...I would love to have a son." Blaise answered with disbelief of her callous attitude.

Ephiny could see the hurt in her eyes from her statement and knew that she needed to tell Blaise about the amazons feelings towards boys... "listen...Blaise...aah I need to explain something about a son." Ephiny stammered as she tried to find the right words.

"What do you mean Eph?" Blaise asked confused.

"My regent..excuse me...Gabrielle asked me to come and inform you that the council meeting will be starting shortly." Solari replied obviously uncomfortable.

Ephiny smirked at Solari and kissed Blaise passionately... "I love you Blaise." Ephiny answered as she glanced towards Solari who put her head down... "tell our queen I’m on my way." Ephiny snapped back.

"I will." Solari answered as she walked away.

"I have to go Blaise...a son will be just fine." Ephiny answered with a smile not finding it in her heart to tell Blaise that their son would not be excepted in the village... "do you think you could arrange all the baby gifts you sent so, we don’t have to climb over them to get into bed...we may have to get another hut if you keep sending so many presents." Ephiny asked as she started to get up but was stopped by Blaise.

"I want to know why you made that comment about us having a son Eph."

"Honey...it’s fine really...I just thought that we would have a daughter that’s all...I really have to go." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise and walked away to her meeting as Blaise watched her wondering why she was being so evasive.

Blaise laid back on the blanket and stared up at the crystal blue sky as she tried to figure her wife out. Blaise was confused as to her evasiveness with the conversation as it turned to them having a son, she wondered why Ephiny acted so strangely when Solari was near earlier in the day and again just recently.

Blaise wondered why Ephiny was so willing to forgive Solari before but now she was acting as if she hated her. Blaise passed it off to her hormones from the pregnancy and maybe Ephiny wasn’t quite ready to totally forgive Solari for her betrayal despite her insistence that she was willing to forgive her.

"Blaise!" Solari replied... "will you come to the training area for the archery lesson?"

Blaise sat up... "aah...yeah...I forgot." Blaise stammered as she gathered their things and put them in the basket.

Blaise struggled to get up with her bad leg, the crutch and their basket... "here I’ll take that Blaise." Solari responded as she took the basket from her and brushed her hand against Blaise’s... "I’m sorry." Solari apologized nervously.

"It’s okay..thanks for the help." Blaise answered as she put the crutch under her arm.

"Looks like your walking better Blaise."

"Yeah...I guess so." Blaise answered as she looked down to watch her gait as they headed toward the training area.

Blaise spent three candle marks with the new recruits and went back towards her hut... "Blaise!...come with us we could use your help seeing as how you’re part god." Xena replied with a smile as Blaise limped over to where she was located.

"What’s up?" Blaise asked as she surveyed the scene.

"We’re trying to get this hut put up and we need some muscle."

"I’ll try to help as much as I can with this bum leg." Blaise answered with a smile as she moved over to help Xena lift a beam for the roof of the hut.

The group had the majority of the hut erected within no time despite the intense heat in the enclosed area. Blaise was soaked with sweat and took her white tunic off to work in her sports bra to cool off. Blaise laid her tunic over a tree branch outside the half erected hut to dry and headed over to help Xena with a large beam.

Blaise and Xena would carry the beams in and set them as the other amazons would attach them together.

"How’s your leg?" Xena asked.

"It’s there...let’s put it that way...hey, do you get the feeling we’re the only one’s doing any of the work?" Blaise asked as Xena looked around at the other amazons.

"Yeah...I got that feeling when you took your shirt off!" Xena answered with a chuckle.

"Do you think that’s it?" Blaise asked with disbelief.

"Put your shirt on and we’ll get this done quicker." Xena answered with a laugh as she lifted part of a beam.

Blaise put her shirt back on and went back to helping Xena as a barely audible groan was let out by the group.

"See I told you." Xena answered with a laugh.

"You’re right but it didn’t hurt to give the ladies a little tease." Blaise smiled as she lifted one end of a beam.

Xena shook her head... "you are just as cocky as Ares." Xena laughed as she lifted the other end of the beam.

Blaise laughed back... "I’m better looking than Ares too." Blaise answered sarcastically.

"By the gods!...Ephiny must be a saint to be your wife!" Xena answered as she pushed the beam to get Blaise moving.

"Yes...she is and I’m grateful that she’s my wife...sometimes." Blaise answered as she turned to move the beam to it’s destination.

Xena pulled the beam back to stop Blaise... "and what’s that suppose to mean?" Xena asked.

"I don’t know what’s been up with Eph lately...she’s very sweet and loving around me but if I’m around someone else she gets pissed." Blaise explained.

"Aah...I wouldn’t worry about it...it’s probably just the hormones kicking in from her pregnancy."

"Yeah...that’s what I thought too...how’s everything with you and Gabrielle?"

"Very strained...she is hung up on getting pregnant." Xena answered as she lifted her side of the beam.

"Are you sure you want to be around a pregnant woman with those hormones going haywire?" Blaise asked with a laugh as she hoisted her side of the beam.

"True...but if that is going to make Gabrielle happy than I will have to suffer through it." Xena answered with a chuckle.

"The sex must be good from trying though!" Blaise chuckled with a wink.

"Oh, on the contrary..she blames me and we haven’t been together for awhile now and I’m going out of my mind with sexual frustration!"

"I think I would be the same way if Eph cut me off...I shudder at the thought of that Xena...I can’t talk about this subject anymore...it scares me to think about it." Blaise teased... "but I’ll talk to Aphie and see what’s the dillio since our last conversation of her talking to the other gods on your behalf."

"Thanks...I appreciate it!"

"No prob...I can’t have a sexually frustrated warrior princess running loose now can I?" Blaise answered with a shared laugh by Xena.

Blaise, Xena and the amazons finished the hut... "hey, meet me in the food hut for some dinner and then there is a card game afterwards." Xena informed Blaise.

"Alright...who’s in the card game?"

"Salmoneus is bringing Autolycus to play."

"We are going to play with the king of thieves?...how can we be sure he plays fair?"

"We’ll have him sit between us!" Xena answered as she headed off to her hut.

"I’ll see you in a few." Blaise answered as she walked over to the water barrel with the sweat glistening on her tan overheated body.

Ephiny glanced out the window totally bored by what was happening in the council meeting and noticed Blaise removing the lid to the water barrel.

Ephiny smiled as she noticed her lover remove the sweaty white tunic and lay it next to the barrel revealing her strong, tan , and well defined body.

Ephiny watched Blaise’s movements which seemed to be in slow motion as her heart raced faster. Blaise dipped the bucket in the barrel filling it and lifted the bucket above her tilted head. Blaise poured the water over her head and down the front of her body as she enjoyed the coolness of the water against her overheated skin.

Ephiny became aroused as she watched Blaise and thought about how beautiful Blaise is as the moisture between her legs mounted.... "by the gods...if I didn’t have to be in this meeting." Ephiny thought with disappointment as she ran her finger over her lips imagining Blaise’s tender kiss on them as she watched the water trickle down Blaise’s muscular abdomen.

Blaise shook her head side to side and flipped her head back to get her hair off her face. Blaise took in a deep, refreshing breath and exhaled slowly as the water dripped off her mouth.

Ephiny noticed two amazons were enjoying the same vision she was and became angered. Ephiny looked back at Blaise who threw her shirt over her shoulder and walked away with her crutch tucked under her arm as the excess water dripped from her muscular body.

"Wouldn’t you agree Ephiny?...aah...Ephiny?" Gabrielle asked trying to get the attention of her regent.

Ephiny turned to Gabrielle still lost in her thoughts of Blaise and gave Gabrielle a confused look.

"Did you hear me?"...are you okay?" Gabrielle asked her regent with concern.

"Yeah...yeah....I’m fine...what did you ask me?...I’m sorry." Ephiny answered with embarrassment... "if they could read my mind...what a tale of lust it would tell." Ephiny thought.

"Here...look these over and let me know if you agree with their proposal." Gabrielle answered as she handed Ephiny a scroll to review.

Ephiny glanced at the scroll as she sipped water to wet her dry mouth and read over it quickly... "yes..I agree this would benefit the nation my queen." Ephiny answered as she handed the scroll back and stood up from her bent up sexual tension from watching Blaise half naked.

"Okay then we will move on to the next matter." Gabrielle replied as she shuffled her parchment.

Ephiny motioned for Epinon to approach... "I want Alexandra and Taylor to pull double patrol duty for not paying attention to their duties." Ephiny whispered to Epinon.

"It will be done my regent." Epinon answered as Ephiny gave her a strange look for calling her my regent as Epinon exited the hut.

Ephiny found it odd to be called ‘regent’ by Epinon but that’s how Gabrielle wanted them to be addressed in the council meeting even though they addressed one another by their first names on a social basis.

Ephiny sat back down and noticed the amazons were not pleased with their latest orders as a half smile appeared on Ephiny’s face... "that will teach you two to look at my wife that way again." Ephiny thought to herself as she rejoined the council meeting.

Blaise rushed into the hut to change clothes so she could hurry and meet Xena for the evening meal. Blaise slipped into a fresh pair of black boxer shorts, a clean sports bra then into a black sleeveless tunic and slipped on a pair of comfortable oversized black pants with a drawstring in the front. Blaise slipped on a pair of thong sandals and headed for the food hut.

Xena was already seated with her meal as Blaise grabbed her meal and sat down to join her.

"You’re smelling much better Blaise." Xena teased as she glanced up from her food as Blaise began to eat hers.

"I thought you liked to smell warrior sweat?" Blaise teased.

"Yeah...my own." Xena answered as they both laughed.

"I didn’t get to take a full bath just a quick pour of a bucket of water and then a lot of cologne." Blaise answered with a smile between bites of food.

"Hello ladies."

"Salmoneus...Autolycus!" Xena answered with a smile as she stood to greet the pair.

"Hey, Blaise!" Salmoneus replied as he hugged her.

"Salmoneus!...I’m glad to see you finally stopped crying from my joining ceremony." Blaise teased.

"Oh, Blaise...it was so touching that I couldn’t help it."

"And who might this fine specimen be?" Autolycus asked with a sly grin as he took Blaise’s hand and raised it towards his mouth as Blaise gave him a dirty look.

"I wouldn’t do that to the future God of War Autolycus!" Xena answered with a smile.

"Whoa!...I thought she reminded me of someone....hey, how you doing?" he asked nervously as they clasped hands.

"Blaise is my sister Autolycus." Xena answered with a snicker at Autolycus’ reaction.

"Blaise..nice to meet you." she answered as she sat down and slapped Salmoneus’ hand away from her plate of food which he was taking food from.

"Where’s Gabrielle and Ephiny?" Autolycus asked.

"Our wives are delayed with a council meeting... which looks like it will run late into the evening." Xena answered as she munched on her fowl.

"Wives?" Autolycus asked confused.

"Gabrielle and I joined about seven moons ago and Blaise and Ephiny were joined six moons ago as well."

"Wow!...I have been away for a long time...maybe that’s why I didn’t get an invitation." Autolycus answered sarcastically.

"Sorry, Auto...we didn’t have time to send out invitations."

"So, Blaise...Ephiny’s your wife huh?"

"Yes...she is." Blaise answered with a smile as she slapped Sal’s hand who tried to sneak food while she wasn’t looking once again... "would you get your own!" Blaise snapped at Salmoneus.

Autolycus snapped his fingers... "I was so hoping I could get Ephiny to fall for me too!" he answered with a laugh.

"Auto!...Ephiny’s pregnant with my niece or nephew!" Xena replied with a smile and pride.

"By Zeus!...no way!" Autolycus exclaimed as he looked at Blaise.

"Way!" Blaise answered with a smile... "alright Sal eat the rest of my dinner because I’m tired of your fingers being in it and you never know where they have been!"

"Oh, please...did you have to go there Blaise...that’s disgusting." Autolycus exclaimed with a look of disgust.

"Thanks Blaise." Salmoneus responded eagerly as he grabbed her plate and began to finish the food as Blaise shook her head and laughed at Salmoneus.

"Well...congratulations Blaise." Autolycus replied with a smile.

"Thanks...we’re very happy at the prospect of becoming parents." Blaise answered with a smile.

"So, what suckers am I going to take dinars off of this evening?" Autolycus asked with a devilish grin and a swipe of his moustache.

"All of us, a few amazons, and Joxer." Xena answered.

"Joxer?!...yes...easy pickings!" Autolycus laughed as he rubbed his hands together.

"Hey!...don’t mess with my boy or you’ll have to deal with me." Blaise replied sarcastically as she pointed to Autolycus.

"I was kidding." Autolycus answered with a smile as he leaned towards Xena and whispered... "was she?"

Xena smiled and looked at Autolycus... "no... not really."

"Geez...I’m not making a very good impression with the future God of War."

"No...you’re not...Joxer has changed a lot Auto and he’s Blaise’s assistant now." Xena explained.

"By the gods...you’re kidding...right?" Autolycus asked with a look of astonishment.

Xena shook her head no... "Blaise has done wonders with him...he’s actually tolerable to be around."

‘Oh, behave warrior princess!" Autolycus exclaimed in disbelief.

"You’ll see...here he comes now." Xena answered as she looked and pointed towards the door.

"Well...he got rid of that stupid armor at least." Autolycus replied as they watched him approach... "and he walked across the room without tripping or falling...I guess you’re right Xena." Autolycus replied with disbelief.

"Why would you ever doubt me?" Xena asked with a sly grin as she glanced at Autolycus as they all stood up.

"Hey Autolycus...Salmoneus." Joxer replied as he clasped hands with them...it’s good to see you both."

"Yeah...same here." Autolycus answered with a look of shock on his face over the change in Joxer.

"I’ve got everything set up over at the recreation hut so, when you’re ready we can head over." Joxer explained with a smile.

"Thanks dude!" Blaise answered as she patted him on the back... "I’m ready now." Blaise answered as she limped off towards the door with everyone else in tow.

"His set up should be interesting." Autolycus answered under his breath.

Xena glanced back with a smile... "just wait!"

They all entered the hut noticing a table containing green felt set up so the cards would be free to glide across, a bar keep with plenty of port on hand and a waiter to cater to their needs.

Autolycus looked at Xena amazed that Joxer set everything up... "I told you!" Xena laughed.

"Autolycus...you’re between Xena and Blaise." Joxer pointed to his seat as everyone else took their seats.

"Oh, come on Joxer!" Autolycus whined with a disgusted look on his face for his seating arrangement.

"Sorry...boss’ orders." Joxer answered with a smile as he looked at Autolycus.

Autolycus took his seat and looked at Blaise... "keep your hands on the table."

"At all times!" Xena snapped.

"Oh, you two don’t trust me do you?" Autolycus asked sarcastically.

Blaise and Xena leaned forward to look at each other and then back at Autolycus replying in unison... "no!" as everyone laughed.

"I’m so hurt!...hey, Joxer...why isn’t there any woman serving us?" Autolycus asked with disappointment.

"Auto...we’re in an amazon village and the women here don’t serve men...be thankful you were allowed in here."

"I happen to like the people you chose Joxer." Salmoneus replied as he checked the waiter out while he walked past to deliver the port.

"Okay...enough chit chat ladies...ante up!" Xena ordered as everyone chipped in their dinars.

The group played cards for over two candle marks when the waiter brought over more port by the pitcher.

"Aah...Xena...you might want to lay off of that stuff because I can’t carry you to bed tonight." Blaise teased as everyone laughed.

Xena gave Blaise a look of "shut up!"

"Hey!...look at Joxer’s pot...you two thought I was going to take you for everything you had!" Autolycus slurred.

"Joxer...if you win anymore of my dinars I will have to give you a pay cut." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"You can come to me for a loan if you need to boss." Joxer answered with a laugh as he put his dinars in neat stacks on the table.

"Blaise!" Ephiny shouted from outside the hut as she approached.

Blaise’s eyes widened with fear... "by the gods...she sounds pissed!...don’t tell her I’m here!" Blaise exclaimed as she ducked under the table before Ephiny entered the hut.

"Hi Ephiny!" the group replied with drunken grins on their faces.

"Blaise!...I know you’re in here!...come out from under the table." Ephiny demanded as she put her hands on her hips.

Blaise tugged on Autolycus’ boot for a dinar which he slyly handed under the table as everyone sat afraid to say a word.

"Here it is!" Blaise exclaimed as she backed out from under the table and hit her head before she got up..."I found my dinar that rolled under the table...oh, Ephiny!...hi honey!" Blaise answered with a smile as she rubbed the bump on her head.

"I told you to clean up the hut and all you proceeded to do was track mud into the hut along with your sweaty clothes laying all over the place." Ephiny answered hotly as the group snickered.

"Don’t worry honey...it’s no biggie!" Blaise answered with a nervous chuckle.

Everyone lowered their heads and scratched the backs of their heads from the wrath they knew Blaise was about to get from Ephiny.

"Blaise!" Ephiny screamed in anger as her face turned red.

Blaise winced as did everyone else from being startled by Ephiny. Ephiny gave Blaise the ‘if looks could kill’ look and stormed out of the hut slamming the door as everyone winced again from the noise.

Everyone looked at Blaise in disbelief as Blaise held her hands out with confusion... "what?...what did I say?"

"Blaise...my friend....you have a lot to learn about handling pregnant women...let me rephrase that...pregnant amazon women." Autolycus exclaimed with his index finger raised to get his point across.

"Oh, like you’re an expert?" Blaise asked sarcastically.

"I know better than you do...you better go chase her or it will be even worse later."

"He’s right Blaise." Xena answered.

Blaise started to walk away... "hold it!" Autolycus exclaimed as he stood up and took the dinar out of Blaise’s hand... "I need that!" he answered as he sat back down.

Blaise headed out of the hut and thought about what she would say to Ephiny. She arrived at their hut to find Ephiny had locked the door.

"Baby... open the door...it’s me."

"Go stay with your buddies!" Ephiny yelled from the hut.

"Come on Eph." Blaise pleaded.... "let’s go to bed honey."

The door opened with Blaise’s blanket and pillow flying through it into her face... "go sleep in the barn if you’re tired!" Ephiny exclaimed as she shut the door and latched it again.

Blaise struggled to keep the flying linens from falling to the ground... "I am in some serious trouble...I have never seen her that pissed before." Blaise spoke out loud to herself as she headed back to the recreation hut.

Everyone chuckled as Blaise walked in with her pillow and blanket with a look of disbelief. Blaise sat back down dejected and Autolycus put his hand on her shoulder... "Blaise...to deal with a pregnant woman you do everything they say and don’t question them."

"Gee...thanks for the advice now!...where’s Xena?"

"Getting in trouble with Gabrielle...she came in pissed too...she’s not pregnant is she?" Autolycus asked with a sly grin.

"Not unless it happened in the last few candle marks." Blaise answered dryly.

They all looked up as Xena entered with her blanket and pillow causing a loud roar of laughter from the group as Xena sat down with the same look of disbelief Blaise had on her face.

"What were you tossed out for?" Blaise asked.

"You name it and that’s the reason." Xena answered as they all laughed.

"Well...there’s no reason why we can’t continue to play the game...hey, waiter!...we need some drinks." Autolycus ordered with a circular movement of his hand around the table for the drinks to be delivered.

The waiter delivered the drinks and lurched forward in response to the goose he received on the backside from Salmoneus who grinned at the handsome young stud as the waiter winked back.

"Here lover boy!" Blaise replied as she threw a towel to Salmoneus... "wipe the drool off your mouth!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

"Thanks Blaise...it’s hot in here!" Salmoneus answered with a laugh as he glanced at the waiter again.

The group played well into the night and losing just about everything to Joxer... "well...I hate to take the dinars and run but I really have to get some sleep...I have an early trip in the morning." Joxer replied with a grin.

"Where to?...the bank to store all of your winnings?" Autolycus asked sarcastically.

"No...I have work to do tomorrow...it was a pleasure seeing you both and of course, for taking your dinars." Joxer answered with a laugh as he gathered his winnings... "goodnight." Joxer replied with a smile as he exited the hut.

"Are you sure that’s not Jett?" Autolycus asked still in disbelief from Joxer’s demeanor.

"Maybe if you would have believed in him a little more you would have received a better response from him." Blaise answered as she stood up and laid her blanket on the floor throwing the pillow on it as she headed for the door.

"Where you off too?" Xena asked.

"To check on Ephiny...I just want to make sure she’s okay...I’ll be back here tonight because I don’t want to upset her anymore than what she already is now." Blaise answered with sadness as she limped out of the hut to make her way to her own living quarters.

Blaise quietly forced her hand through the hut wall next to the door and unlatched the lock on the inside allowing her to enter. Blaise approached the bed slowly but quietly to not wake Ephiny and covered her with a blanket. Blaise leaned down and lightly kissed her forehead. Ephiny smiled and hugged her pillow tighter through her sleep as Blaise lovingly looked on. Blaise lightly brushed the back of her hand across Ephiny’s face and thought about how much she loved Ephiny and how she was her whole life. Blaise smiled and whispered... "I love you." as she turned to leave the hut.

Blaise returned to the recreation hut to find everyone else sprawled on the floor passed out. She laid down on her blanket and cuddled to her pillow which smelled of Ephiny’s perfume. Blaise smiled and wished she was cuddled up next to the love of her life. She thought about how she always wanted to love someone as much as she does Ephiny but was always afraid to give her heart completely to another until she met Ephiny. She thought how Ephiny captured her heart the moment she made eye contact with her and she knew Ephiny was her soulmate.

Blaise wished she had Ephiny in her arms but she would respect her feelings despite the fact that she missed her even though they were just a couple of huts away. Blaise felt that even when Ephiny was in her arms she still wasn’t close enough and she hoped Ephiny felt the same about her as she drifted off to sleep.

Blaise woke up around mid day to the sound of Autolycus snoring in her ear... "dude!...get away from me." Blaise replied as she hit him in the shoulder to wake him.

"Huh?...what?" Autolycus answered confused as he opened one eye... "by the gods!...I can only see out of one eye!"

"Try opening the other one!" Blaise answered sarcastically.

"Oh, thanks." Autolycus answered as he opened his other eye and sat up... "oh, my head...it feels like a centaur stepped on it."

"Your face looks like it stepped on that too!" Blaise teased as she noticed Salmoneus cuddled up close to the waiter with a contented smile on his face.

Xena woke up and surveyed the room... "this is a freaky scene!" Xena replied as she cleared her throat and sat up.

"You’re telling me?...try sleeping with the king of thieves snoring in your ear!" Blaise laughed as she stood up... "Xena...babe...you have a serious case of bed head!" Blaise laughed as she grabbed her crutch while Xena ran her hands through her hair to fix the disheveled look.

"Is it better now?" Xena asked with insecurity from her looks.

"Slightly...too bad you can’t wake up as good looking as me!" Blaise teased.

"And you think Autolycus is bad...you’re worse." Xena answered as she continued to work on her hair.

"Hey!...I resemble that remark." Autolycus responded as he laid back and moaned from the hangover.

"I guess I don’t need this crutch anymore." Blaise replied as she tossed the crutch away... "I ‘ll catch you whackos later." Blaise teased as she headed for the door and was whacked in the head with her pillow... "hey!" Blaise replied as she turned around to the culprit just as the blanket engulfed her face... "very funny." Blaise answered as she removed the blanket.

"Didn’t want you to forget your blankie Blaise...you might miss it!" Xena answered with a laugh as did Autolycus.

"Hardy har har...Xena." Blaise answered with a laugh as she exited the hut with a noticeable limp.

Blaise went in search of Ephiny and stopped Solari along the way... "have you seen Eph?"

"They are in meetings all day again."

"Really?" Blaise answered with disappointment.

"They should be finished before the evening meal though."

"Thanks Solari." Blaise answered as she walked to her hut.

Blaise spent the rest of the afternoon cleaning the hut and arranging the baby gifts as Ephiny had asked her to do. Blaise filled the room with freshly cut flowers and left a note for Ephiny.

Blaise finished up her arrangements for the evening festivities she had planned for Ephiny and waited for her at the bath hut hoping she would still not be mad and would join her.

Ephiny entered the hut exhausted from the mental anguish the council members inflict on one another with their decision making. Ephiny looked around the hut finding it spotless and was overwhelmed by the aroma from the beautiful flowers. Ephiny saw the note and picked it up:

Hopefully you have forgiven me enough to meet me in the bath hut for a date....Blaise.

Ephiny smiled and held the note to her lips as she smelled Blaise’s cologne on the note. She put the note down realizing she couldn’t stay too mad at Blaise. Ephiny walked over to the bath hut and stood in the doorway still unnoticed by Blaise. Ephiny looked around the hut to see she had the area filled with candles, flowers, food and the hot tub was filled with floating candles and daisies.

Ephiny smiled and looked at Blaise who sat leaned back in the chair on two legs and was throwing an apple up and catching it to pass the time. Ephiny stepped farther into the hut... "hello... Blaise."

Blaise looked at Ephiny forgetting about the airborne apple which hit her in the head and threw her off balance as the chair fell backwards to the ground with Blaise in it. Blaise laughed as did Ephiny as she came to her side to see if she was okay.

"Blaise... are you okay." Ephiny asked with a chuckle as she knelt beside her.

Blaise leaned up on her elbow and looked Ephiny in the eye... "I am now...I’m glad you came tonight because I intend to make it up to you baby." Blaise answered with a smile.

"You don’t have to Blaise...it’s my fault I shouldn’t have treated you the way I did...can you forgive me?" Ephiny answered as she tucked her hair behind her ear and smiled.

Blaise sat up in front of Ephiny and took her hands in her own... "there’s no need for me to forgive you baby...I’m sorry I upset you last night...I didn’t mean too." Blaise answered with a loving smile as Ephiny put her hand on Blaise’s face to brush her hair back and ran her hand down her face to her chin. Ephiny looked into Blaise’s deep blues and moved her chin up so Blaise could except the soft kiss she was offering.

"Why are you so sweet to me?" Ephiny asked as she leaned back.

"Because every time I look at you I fall in love with you all over again...I get that excited feeling that all new lovers get and you melt my heart the moment I see you...it’s also because I love you more than I have ever or will ever love anyone else." Blaise answered lovingly as she leaned in and kissed Ephiny.

"You know just what to say to me every time to make me feel better baby...I love you and I’m sorry for the way I’ve been acting lately."

"What’s been wrong Eph?" Blaise asked with concern as she searched her troubled hazel eyes.

Ephiny looked down at her hands as her blond curls fell to the front of her face and Blaise pushed her hair back on her shoulder.

Ephiny shifted her eyes to look up at Blaise... "I’m jealous Blaise." Ephiny answered berating herself for being so stupid.

"Jealous?...of what Eph?" Blaise asked bewildered.

"It’s really stupid Blaise." Ephiny answered as she lifted her head to face Blaise... "I’m jealous of anyone you spend time with and I take it out on you."

"Why would you be jealous of anyone else?" Blaise asked as she kissed her hand for comfort.

"It’s just because I want to spend every waking minute with you Blaise... because it’s not often that you’re here with me."

"I understand Eph... because I feel the same way but there’s no reason to be nasty to friends or family if they are around."

"I know I shouldn’t feel that way but I feel like you might find someone else and I feel like you love the baby more than me." Ephiny answered as she looked down.

Blaise was astounded by Ephiny’s revelation as a lump formed in her throat and looked at her in complete disbelief while her heart sank. Blaise let go of her hands and stood up as she contemplated what her response to Ephiny would be.

Blaise turned her back to Ephiny who sat in the chair and waited with fear of what Blaise was going to say. Blaise put her hand on her hip and rubbed her face with the other hand as she tried to calm her hurt and anger... "does she not know to what lengths I will and have gone to prove my love to her?" Blaise thought to herself as she turned to Ephiny and removed her hand from her face.

Ephiny saw hurt and disappointment in Blaise’s blue eyes and her eyes filled with tears.

"Ephiny...I’m shocked and hurt that you would ever suggest that I love the baby more than you."

"Blaise." Ephiny answered through her tears.

"No...let me finish." Blaise answered as she held her hand up to interrupt Ephiny... "I have never loved someone as much as I love you and that will never change...why do you think I made the deal with my father for the ambrosia?...do you think I made it so you could come back and bear children for me?" Blaise asked with agitation as she pointed at herself to emphasize her point.

"Blaise...I..." Ephiny stammered as she found it hard to look at Blaise and looked away.

"No...I made that deal because I love you with my heart and soul Ephiny." Blaise answered as she knelt before her... "I wasn’t going to live my life without you in it... so, I sacrificed what I had to in order for you to come back to me because I love you... not because I want you to have children for me...if we were never to be blessed to have children it would be fine with me as long as I had you honey." Blaise answered as she tilted her head to look into Ephiny’s eyes trying to reassure her of her love.

Ephiny cried harder as she was consumed with guilt for doubting Blaise’s love for her. Ephiny put both hands on Blaise’s face as she looked into her hurt filled blue eyes as Blaise put her hands on Ephiny’s arms.

"Blaise...I’m sorry I ever doubted your love for me...can you ever forgive me?" Ephiny asked as she searched her blues for forgiveness.

"I will if you’ll be honest with me and tell me that you’re happy to be having our child." Blaise asked as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes for the truth.

"Blaise...please don’t think that I don’t want this baby or that I’m not happy about it...I just wished that we would have had more time to spend together before a child entered our life... but I’m very happy that a little part of each of us is growing inside of me to become one." Ephiny answered with pride and joy.

Blaise kissed Ephiny as Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck for a hug... "I forgive you baby." Blaise whispered as her lips never lost contact with Ephiny’s deepening her kiss with Ephiny as she cried harder.

"Hey...come on...no more crying okay." Blaise replied with a soothing smile as she pushed Ephiny’s hair off her face and wiped her tears away... "where’s that badass amazon woman I fell in love with huh?" Blaise teased getting a laugh out of Ephiny.

Blaise slowly leaned in to Ephiny as she kept eye contact and pressed her lips against Ephiny’s for a passionate kiss that Ephiny had never felt before. They both lost themselves in their sensual kiss and broke away for a breath.

"Blaise...you do know how much I love you right?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"I know everytime you look at me, when you smile, the way that you want me, when you hold me, everytime you show me what love’s made of and in the way you make love to me." Blaise answered with a love and admiration as she kissed Ephiny.

"Blaise...you always make me feel so loved and special." Ephiny answered with a smile as she fought back her tears of complete happiness... "I have never loved someone as much I as I love you Blaise and I want you to know that I will always love you with all of my heart." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise.

"I know baby." Blaise whispered through her kiss. Blaise broke their kiss... "come on babe." Blaise replied as she took Ephiny’s hand.

"What’s going on?" Ephiny inquired.

"I intend to pamper you this evening so, let’s get started." Blaise answered with a sexy smile as she took Ephiny’s hand and led her to the hot tub.

Blaise stood before Ephiny unlacing her robe and slid her hands over her soft skin under the robe pushing it off her shoulders to the ground as she locked her blues with Ephiny’s hazels. Blaise moved closer to Ephiny and kissed her lips softly sending a flood of warmth throughout her body.

Blaise smiled softly as she broke their kiss and led her to the steps of the hot tub. Blaise held her hand as she stepped into the tub and sat down. Blaise removed her clothing as Ephiny watched intently and her arousal peaked by Blaise’s magnificent body. Ephiny’s body was consumed by warmth as the wetness between her legs mounted while she watched Blaise remove her clothing.

Blaise made her way into the tub and moved in behind Ephiny. Blaise moved Ephiny’s long blond curls over her shoulder to the front of her body and began to massage her shoulders.

"Blaise...that feels so good." Ephiny replied softly as she closed her eyes to enjoy the feeling of Blaise’s soft touch.

"Honey...you’re muscles are so tight." Blaise observed as she continued to gently massage her tight muscles and kissed her softly on the neck as Blaise felt Ephiny’s muscles relax under her kiss... "does that feel better baby?" Blaise whispered in her ear as she kneaded the muscle spasms.

Ephiny thoroughly enjoyed Blaise’s hands on her spasmed muscles and felt her body go limp and opened her eyes... "Blaise...that feels so wonderful." she replied in a whisper as she noticed a candle holder floating without a candle but with a small box on it which floated towards her... "Blaise what’s this?" she asked as she reached for the holder.

"That’s for you honey...I intended to give it to you before but there wasn’t an appropriate time to do it." Blaise answered softly in her ear as she ran her hands down Ephiny’s body and wrapped her arms around her as she placed soft kisses on her shoulder.

Ephiny opened the box which contained a ring with a heart and two diamonds in it. Blaise leaned her chin on Ephiny’s shoulder and tilted her head to look at Ephiny... "do you like it?"

Ephiny looked at Blaise... "it’s beautiful honey...I love it...but why?"

Blaise looked at the ring in Ephiny’s hand and reached up out of the water to place it on Ephiny’s finger... "well...you’re the keeper of my heart and the heart on the ring is mine...the diamonds represent you and our baby because you’re always in my heart." Blaise answered as she raised Ephiny’s hand and kissed the ring softly as Ephiny watched her lovingly.

Ephiny turned sideways and was breath taken by Blaise’s gift as tears burned her face... "Blaise...this is so beautiful and thoughtful baby." Ephiny answered as she stared into Blaise’s sexy blue eyes.

Blaise wiped the tears off her face... "I wanted to give you something to remind you that we are a family honey and with each new baby I’ll add another diamond." Blaise answered as she smiled lovingly.

Ephiny ran her hand down Blaise’s face as she stared intently into her loving blue eyes and was consumed with love and joy... "baby...you’re so sweet to me...I don’t know how you can stay with me the way I have been acting lately." Ephiny answered with regret as she lowered her head.

"I stay with you because you’re my life and my love...you’re stuck with me baby." Blaise answered with a smile as she put her finger under Ephiny’s chin to lift her head up and locked eyes with her.

Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise tightly... "I love you so much and I’m sorry for being such a bitch Blaise."

"It’s okay babe...I’m sure everyone understands it’s those crazy hormones acting up." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny softly.

Blaise turned Ephiny around so her back was to her and began her massage again as Ephiny held her ring up to admire it with a smile.

"Blaise...how many diamonds do you think will end up on this ring?" Ephiny wondered with a smile.

Blaise leaned over her shoulder... "that depends on how much you like diamonds baby." Blaise answered with a chuckle as she kissed Ephiny’s cheek who continued to admire the ring.

"Hmmm...well...diamonds are a girls best friend but I’ll have to wait and see how this delivery goes because I may just have to settle for the two diamonds." Ephiny answered with a laugh.

"Honey...if you didn’t want to have any more children I would give you a diamond for every season we are together." Blaise answered as she kissed her cheek and hugged her tightly... "I love you." Blaise whispered as Ephiny put her hand on Blaise’s face as love and happiness overwhelmed her.

"Blaise...if you don’t mind me asking...where do you get all of the dinars to purchase such extravagant gifts for me?"

"You’re my wife...I don’t mind as long as you don’t try to bump me off for my riches." Blaise teased as Ephiny turned to face Blaise and laughed.

"You have nothing to worry about because all I want is you baby." Ephiny answered as she wrapped her arms and legs around Blaise capturing her lips with her own for a kiss.

"Well...to answer your question...I was given many gifts of jewels and dinars by various family members as well as from people with allegiance to my father as tokens of their appreciation to him when I was born...it also helps when your uncle is Hephaestus who can make anything I want and in fact, he’s working on something for the baby as we speak."

"He is?...what is he making?" Ephiny inquired.

"It’s a surprise." Blaise answered with a sly grin.

"You’re not going to tell me are you?" Ephiny teased.

"Aah...no." Blaise smiled and half shook her head.

"What if I showered you with kisses...would you tell me then?" Ephiny asked seductively as a sexy smile spread across her face.

"Well...I don’t know why don’t you try it?" Blaise answered with a smile and a warm, excited feeling swept over her at the thought of Ephiny’s lips on hers.

Ephiny lightly ran her tongue along Blaise’s lower lip and slid her tongue past Blaise’s parted mouth kissing her deeply. Ephiny ran her fingers up through Blaise’s hair as she continued her fury of kisses.

Blaise felt the electricity and passion from Ephiny’s kiss throughout her entire body. Blaise pulled her in as close to her own body as she could as Ephiny moved her kiss down Blaise’s neck alternating them with soft bites which sent a throbbing sensation to Blaise’s loins.

Ephiny moved her lips and tongue lightly along Blaise’s soft skin up to her ear. Ephiny circled her tongue along the contours of Blaise’s ear as her soft breath echoed throughout Blaise’s ear sending an ignited passion through her body and she wanted nothing more than for Ephiny to devour her.

"Are you going to tell me now?" Ephiny whispered as Blaise’s wetness between her legs mounted.

"Well..." Blaise answered softly taking in a breath and began kissing Ephiny’s neck up to her ear as Ephiny moved her head back in pleasure. Blaise made her way to Ephiny’s ear as Ephiny clenched her fingernails into Blaise’s muscular back from the excitement she felt... "it’s a surprise and if I tell you I’d have to kill you...but you can still kiss me though." Blaise whispered with a laugh.

Ephiny placed a bite on Blaise’s neck... "ooh, Blaise...you are terrible."

They both laughed... "but that’s why you love me so much." Blaise answered with a sexy smile and a wink.

"You’re so cocky!" Ephiny teased as she kissed Blaise.

"Hey, I was thinking Eph...after the baby is born and is old enough for us to leave them for a few days...aah...I was wondering if you would want to go on a holiday to the ocean...just the two of us?" Blaise asked as she searched for agreement.

"I would love that babe." Ephiny answered with excitement and embraced Blaise.

They both heard Ephiny’s stomach growl and laughed... "I guess the baby’s hungry."

"I brought some pickles and yogurt for you." Blaise answered with a sly grin.

"No...I want mutton and yogurt tonight." Ephiny answered with a smile.

Blaise curled her lip up in disgust... "I will be so happy when you get back to eating normal food." Blaise laughed and shook her head as she moved to the side of the tub where the table of food was located.

Blaise hoisted herself up and leaned over the tub to grab the bowl of yogurt as Ephiny moved in behind her biting her firm backside... "wow!" Blaise shouted as she jumped in reaction to the love bite... "I’m not the mutton baby!" Blaise laughed as she grabbed Ephiny’s food request.

Blaise leaned back into the tub and faced Ephiny... "I couldn’t resist that sexy ass of yours Blaise...it looked so enticing and it screamed for a love bite." Ephiny answered seductively with a mischievous smile as she began to eat her food.

"Yeah...just remember...payback!" Blaise smiled mischievously and wiggled her eyebrows.

"Oh, Blaise!...I’m pregnant remember?" Ephiny whined with a smile.

"Oh, I remember all too well and I’ll get you back when you least expect it!" Blaise answered with a smile... "I’m pruning...I think I better get out." Blaise answered with a sly grin as she stood up and headed towards the steps of the hot tub as the excess water ran down her muscular body.

Ephiny grabbed Blaise before she could exit... "I see something I like better than mutton and yogurt." Ephiny replied seductively as she put her hands on Blaise’s hips to pull her closer and began to kiss Blaise’s muscular abdomen spreading a warmth throughout Blaise’s body.

Ephiny slid her kisses down to Blaise’s wet, dark curls parting her folds with her tongue as she traced the contours of Blaise’s sex.

Blaise gasped to catch her breath as her heart raced... "oh, baby!" Blaise moaned from Ephiny’s exploration on her sex with her tongue. Blaise tilted her head back in pleasure as her breathing became erratic and she felt as though her heart would pound out of her chest from her arousal. Blaise’s knees felt weak as Ephiny continued to lick and suck her mound. Blaise leaned forward and put her hands on the side of the tub to brace herself as she straddled Ephiny.

Ephiny slid her tongue slowly but steadily in and out of Blaise’s wet opening. Ephiny traced her tongue along the contours of her warm, wet sex and began to lick her clit as if she was trying to catch a snowflake on the tip of her tongue. The gentle, light, and sensual touch of her tongue caused a burning fire between Blaise’s legs. Ephiny captured Blaise’s swollen nub between her lips and began to gently suck as she slowly slid a finger inside of Blaise’s wet opening.

"Aah...Eph!" Blaise gasped as her breathing became more labored with her thrusting her hips forward and backward while Ephiny picked up her pace running her tongue along Blaise’s clit. Blaise felt her passion mount with her muscles tightening and released her orgasm... "Oh, baby!" Blaise shouted as she gasped for a breath while Ephiny savored her reward from Blaise.

Ephiny took everything Blaise had to offer her and moved her kisses back up Blaise’s stomach to her neck as Blaise’s labored breathing began to taper off... "I love you Blaise." Ephiny whispered in Blaise’s ear as she engulfed Ephiny in a hug.

"I love you Eph." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny and could taste herself on her lips... "take me to bed or lose me forever." Blaise answered with a sexy smile as she stepped out of the tub.

Blaise took Ephiny’s hand and helped her down the steps as they began to towel off.

Blaise and Ephiny dressed... "don’t forget to grab some food to take back to the hut with us honey." Ephiny replied as they headed out of the hut to reach their own. The lovers made their way to the bath hut with their arms wrapped snugly around each other’s waists nibbling on the food they carried.

Ephiny stopped and stood before Blaise... "thanks baby...tonight was wonderful." Ephiny replied with a loving smile as she gazed into Blaise’s sexy blue eyes while a feeling of undying love swept over her.

Blaise smiled as she gazed into Ephiny’s eyes and thought about how her heart skips a beat every time she looks into Ephiny’s beautiful hazel eyes. Blaise tucked the errant strand of hair on Ephiny’s face behind her ear and slowly moved towards her parted waiting lips. Blaise hesitated momentarily as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes which were closed and pressed her lips to Ephiny’s for a soft sensual kiss as she stroked her hand through her hair.

"I had a wonderful evening as well Eph." Blaise answered softly as her lips never parted with Ephiny’s and deepened the kiss as Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck.

"Oh, you two look so sweet and in love!" Aphrodite replied with excitement as she appeared next to the lovers who were startled.

"Aphie!...what are you trying to do send us to tartarus scaring us like that?" Blaise asked as her heartbeat calmed while Ephiny leaned her head against Blaise’s chin.

"Oh, I’m sorry...but you two look so sweet and in love which pleases the Goddess of Love to no end." Aphrodite squealed with excitement.

"Apology excepted." Blaise answered with a smile.

"How’s the baby?" Aphrodite asked with a smile as she moved her hand to touch Ephiny’s belly but paused and looked at Ephiny for approval which Aphrodite received... "hello, sweetpea...I’m your auntie Aphie and you come see me for anything you want."

"Now...Aphrodite..you can’t spoil the baby too much because Blaise is already doing that way too much." Ephiny answered with a smile and a playful kiss to Blaise’s chin.

"Oh, honey!...I spoiled Blaise rotten and she turned out.."

"Rotten!" Ephiny interrupted with a laugh and poked Blaise in the ribs as they all laughed.

"I’m not that bad." Blaise laughed as she looked at Ephiny.

"Ephiny...honey...I need to speak with Blaise alone if you wouldn’t mind?" Aphrodite asked with seriousness.

"Sure...just try not to keep her long" Ephiny answered with a smile as she kissed Blaise and headed to their hut.

"What’s up Aphie?" Blaise asked concerned from Aphrodite’s demeanor.

"Well...I put in a good word for the warrior babe and her bothersome bard with the gods so, tomorrow night is the opportunity they have been waiting for concerning the baby...so, go ahead and tell them to get busy!" Aphrodite replied with a smile.

"From the sound of your voice it sounded like something bad Aphie!...you had me worried...why don’t you tell them?"

"Cause I wanted to see you sweetpea and I figured you could tell them." Aphrodite answered with a smile as she pinched her cheek.

"Thanks for all your help Aphie." Blaise answered grateful as she hugged and kissed the Goddess of Love.

"I better let you get back to your wife and the baby honey... but I really enjoyed seeing you even though it was brief."

"Thanks again." Blaise answered with a wink and a smile.

Aphrodite blew Blaise a kiss ... "bye sweetpea." she replied as she disappeared.

Blaise found her wife in bed fast asleep as she entered the hut. Blaise smiled while she watched her bride sleep peacefully as she undressed and slid in behind her lover. She wrapped her arms around her soulmate with Ephiny responding to her touch by cuddling up closer to Blaise.

Blaise smiled and thought about how much she loves the feeling of Ephiny being in her arms as she kissed her softly on the cheek... "I love you Eph." Blaise whispered in her ear as she laid her head on the pillow to sleep close to the love of her life wrapped tightly in her arms.

Ephiny awoke before Blaise in the morning and chuckled as she looked down finding Blaise’s face snuggled close to the baby and her arm wrapped tightly around Ephiny’s waist.

"Baby." Ephiny whispered as she ran her fingers through her dark hair to wake her... "baby...wake up." Ephiny replied louder as she tussled her wavy hair.

"Huh?" Blaise replied as she jumped up startled... "what’s up Eph?...you okay?" Blaise answered nervously as she tried to shake off the sleepiness.

"I’m fine baby." Ephiny answered with a smile and thought about how cute Blaise looked... "I have a date with the outhouse."

"Oh, okay." Blaise answered with a little confusion and still half asleep as she rolled onto her back so Ephiny could get out of bed.

Blaise had fallen back to sleep by the time she made it onto her back and Ephiny chuckled as she climbed out of bed placing a soft kiss on Blaise’s lips before leaving the hut for the outhouse.

Ephiny made her way back into bed after her ritual early morning trip to the outhouse and kissed Blaise’s forehead. Blaise opened her eyes and a smile appeared on her face... "everything come out alright?"

"As usual." Ephiny chuckled and tickled Blaise’s ribs who let out a laugh as she wiggled away from the torment.

"Eph." Blaise replied with a smile as she laid on her side and peered into her hazel eyes... "you are such a beautiful site to wake up to in the morning."

"I’m glad you think so and thanks." Ephiny answered with a smile and moved in to kiss Blaise’s soft lips. Blaise slid her hand up on Ephiny’s side and then to her back as their kiss turned more passionate.

Ephiny broke their kiss to catch her breath and locked hazels with blues... "did I ever tell you how adorable you are in the morning?" Ephiny asked with a smile adoringly as she continued her look into the sexiest blue eyes she had ever seen.

"Just the morning huh?" Blaise answered with a chuckle and a cocky smile.

"Well...you’re always adorable baby but it’s just that no matter what position we fall asleep in you always wake up snuggled against the baby." Ephiny explained as Blaise rubbed her back gently.

"Can I help it if I want to be close to the two love’s of my life?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"No...you can’t help it but I just think it’s adorable." Ephiny answered with a loving smile as she kissed Blaise.

"I almost forgot!...I have to finish telling the baby about the crazy family it’s going to be born into." Blaise replied with a smile and excitement as she slid down to face Ephiny’s abdomen.... "okay...I left off with grandpa Ares right?" Blaise asked as she looked up at Ephiny and they both replied in unison... "enough said." through a smile.... "your aunt Aphrodite is the Goddess of Love who will love and watch over you as she did with me...just don’t let her put pink on you." Blaise replied with a laugh as she put her hand on Ephiny’s stomach and felt the gentle wave under her hand from the baby moving... "Eph...did you feel that?" Blaise asked with excitement and a smile.

"Yes...honey!" Ephiny answered as she felt joy in her heart from Blaise’s excitement.

"Your uncle is Cupid the God of Love whose a pretty great guy but you can help me clip his wings for the trick he played on me."

"Blaise...don’t tell the baby that." Ephiny exclaimed as she pulled Blaise’s hair gently as they both laughed.

"Next is grandma Cyrene who is my mother and she is very beautiful, caring and loving...she’ll spoil you as much as I will...don’t tell mommie though." Blaise whispered with a sly grin.

"Blaise...you are so bad." Ephiny chuckled and shook her head.

"Then there’s auntie Xena a great Warrior Princess who is loved and feared by many across the land but she will love and spoil you too...her wife is your aunt Gabrielle who is the amazon queen and she will tell you many great stories because she’s also a famous bard.

Ephiny continued to stroke Blaise’s hair as she listened to Blaise speak to their unborn child with total love as she was overwhelmed with happiness. She wondered how she was so lucky to find another woman who loved and adored her as much as Blaise does and felt as though her life would not be complete without her in it.

"Your uncle Tarus who is not so good with the ladies will help you learn the fine art of archery and maybe you can help him with the ladies." Blaise laughed as did Ephiny.

"Now...I saved the best for last who is your mommie a beautiful, sexy, loving, tough, and proud amazon regent who threw herself at my feet for my affections when I first met her."

"Blaise!...that’s not true!" Ephiny exclaimed as she pinched Blaise.

"Ow!...she pinches really hard too but it’s true." Blaise laughed as she rubbed the pinched area of her skin.

"The baby knows all about us getting together...the truth that is." Ephiny answered as she raised her eyebrows at Blaise to make her point... "I already told the baby all about us and about the wonderful mother they will have." Ephiny answered with a smile.

Blaise was surprised and happy that Ephiny told the baby about her... "you really did?" Blaise asked with excitement.

"Everyday baby." Ephiny answered as Blaise kissed her hand.

"Did mommie tell you that I absolutely adore and love her with all of my heart?" Blaise asked as she climbed up to face Ephiny and felt the baby move more under her hand.

"No...but I told the baby that’s how I feel about you Blaise." Ephiny answered lovingly as she kissed Blaise.

Blaise broke their kiss and gazed into Ephiny’s eyes brushing her long hair off her face... "I love you baby." Blaise answered soulfully as she kissed Ephiny again passionately which was interrupted by a knock at the door... "do you think if we stay quiet they’ll go away?" Blaise asked in a whisper as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes.

"No...they’ll keep knocking...I’ll get it." Ephiny answered as she turned to get up.

"No...stay here...I’ll get it." Blaise replied with agitation at the intrusion as she got out of bed and slipped on her robe.

"Hmmm...nice butt." Ephiny replied with a smile as she looked Blaise over.

"Like that do you?" Blaise answered with a smile as she glanced at her butt... "I think you’re right." Blaise teased with a laugh as Ephiny laid back on the bed shaking her head from Blaise’s cockiness.

The knock became louder... " yeah...yeah...hold your horses I’m coming." Blaise answered in disgust as she moved to the door and opened it to find Joxer standing there.

Blaise’s smile left her face and she slumped her shoulders... "nice to see you too boss." Joxer quipped.

"Sorry dude...I just didn’t want to have to leave...it’s not you...what’s up?"

"They need more reinforcements and General Calvin has been wounded." Joxer explained with regret.

"No!" Blaise answered with agitation at the news of her friend being wounded. Blaise ran her hand through her hair and thought about her friend... "okay...get Taz ready...I’ll be there shortly."

"I’m sorry." Joxer answered as he turned to carry out his orders.

Blaise shut the door and leaned her head against it for a moment trying to calm her anger.

"Blaise...what’s wrong?" Ephiny asked with worry.

Blaise lowered her head as she turned to get dressed... "I have to go Eph." Blaise answered softly.

"Blaise...talk to me...what’s wrong?" Ephiny asked as she climbed out of bed and moved to Blaise who was busy dressing. Ephiny put her hand on Blaise’s back and could feel the tension her lover exuded.

"Not now Eph." Blaise answered as she finished dressing and began to pack her clothes. Blaise wanted to wait till she calmed down before she would tell Ephiny and Ephiny knew when Blaise was like that it was best to give her some space.

Ephiny gathered Blaise’s clothes to help her pack as she fought back her tears as she always did every time Blaise left her. Blaise finished dressing and turned to Ephiny... "I’m sorry...but Calvin has been injured and I have to go right away." Blaise replied as she kept her head down.

Ephiny knew that Calvin was a close friend to Blaise who Blaise said helped her through the tough periods while they were apart... "I’m sorry baby." Ephiny answered as she put her hands on Blaise’s waist.

Blaise looked up and put her hand on Ephiny’s face as she stroked her soft skin with her thumb while she looked into Ephiny’s eyes... "promise me you’ll stay put so, I’ll have nothing to worry about while I’m gone...please." Blaise pleaded.

Ephiny could see the concern in Blaise’s eyes... "I promise this is where I’ll be baby." Ephiny answered reassuringly.

Blaise continued to stroke her face while she gazed into Ephiny’s eyes as she inhaled deeply to fight back her tears and exhaled slowly... "I love you Eph." Blaise answered as she leaned in with a soft, moist kiss and a hug... "I’ve got to go baby. Blaise whispered in her ear as she walked towards the door with a slight limp as Ephiny held her hand as long as possible.

"I’ll see you soon Blaise." Ephiny answered softly as she watched Blaise leave the hut.

Blaise made her way to Xena’s hut and knocked on the door. Xena opened the door with an unpleasant sleep look on her face and squinted from the daylight... "Blaise...what in tartarus are you doing here this early?" Xena asked with agitation.

"Listen...Aphie said tonight is the night for you and Gabrielle so, make sure you make it special okay?" Blaise answered sternly as she turned to leave.

Xena grabbed Blaise’s arm... "hey, you okay?" Xena asked knowing her sister had to have had something on her mind if she didn’t take a perfect opportunity to tease her about sex.

"No...not really Xena...Calvin has been gravely wounded and I have to get back there...just worry about you, your wife and the baby you two will create okay?" Blaise answered as she walked away.

"Blaise...I’m sorry...be careful!" Xena shouted as Blaise mounted Taz and did her ritual ride over to give Ephiny a wink as Ephiny blew her a kiss. Blaise heeled Taz to a full gallop out of the village. Ephiny stood in the doorway for a long moment as her love rode out of site with tears stinging her cheeks and returned to her hut.

Blaise and Joxer made it to Troy by nightfall and Blaise headed directly to Calvin’s side... "what is this?...I leave for a few days and you go off and get wounded." Blaise replied with a smile.

"Blaise." Calvin answered in a whisper as he found it difficult to speak from the pain... "listen...you’ve been a good friend." Calvin explained through gasps of air and gripped Blaise’s hand.

"Don’t say you’re goodbyes to me because you aren’t going anywhere but home to your family...do you hear me?" Blaise answered with anger that her friend was slipping away.

"Please...let me explain...thanks for being such a good friend to me and please give my wife what’s in this." he asked as he handed her a pouch and inhaled his last breath then exhaled as his body went limp.

"No!" Blaise shouted as she checked him over for any signs of life which there were none to find... "I will my friend." Blaise whispered as she closed his eyes and crossed his arms over his chest. Blaise covered his body as the other soldiers stood by solemnly... "sergeant...prepare the general to be taken home with three guards as I will accompany them." Blaise ordered... "Lieutenant...you are now a general."

"Thank you ...thank you...I will serve you well." the man stammered as he felt grief over his fallen comrade and elation at his promotion.

"See to it that you do because it was the general’s request if anything were to happen to him...follow me." Blaise demanded coldly as she exited the tent... "I want the enemy pushed back general do you understand?" Blaise shouted out her orders with anger.

"It will be done my lord." the general answered as he walked away barking orders to his troops.

"Stop calling me that too!...ARES!...show yourself!...NOW!" Blaise shouted in anger with her hands on her hips.

"Ooh, a little demanding aren’t we?" Ares replied sarcastically.

"That’s right you coward!" Blaise shouted as she moved closer to her father... "stop dinking around and get me reinforcements!" Blaise shouted as she pointed at him... "or I’ll stick my boot so far up your godly ass that Zeus himself will have to extract it!" Blaise yelled as she walked away leaving Ares momentarily speechless. He watched his daughter mount her horse and grinned as he replied... "that’s my girl." as he vanished to bring in reinforcements.

Xena had prepared their hut for a romantic evening and waited for Gabrielle to arrive. Gabrielle entered the hut and was surprised to see flowers and food waiting for her along with candles burning around the hut.

"Xena...what have you done now?" Gabrielle asked skeptically.

Xena turned around to face Gabrielle and slowly moved over to her... "why do you think I did something wrong?" Xena asked with a low tone as she put her hands on Gabrielle’s hips.

"Because you never do anything like this for me." Gabrielle answered as she tried to pass Xena who held her firm to her place.

"Maybe I want to change that...have you ever thought of that?" Xena asked as she leaned down to kiss her.

Gabrielle leaned back to avoid the kiss... "did a bacchae bite you or something?" Gabrielle asked still not believing what was going on.

"Gabrielle." Xena answered in a low voice as she leaned down for another attempt at a kiss.

"Really Xena...I’m not in the mood right now." Gabrielle answered as she patted her arm and attempted to move past Xena again but made no head way.

Xena stared into her beautiful green eyes... "Gabrielle...I love you ...please try to push your contempt for me aside for one night please."

Gabrielle could see Xena was serious and had never seen such a loving look from her blue eyes as she did at that moment. Xena pushed Gabrielle’s hair to the side as she stared into her eyes and held her face with her hands... "I’ve missed you baby...please...let this be." Xena replied softly as she slowly leaned down for a sensual kiss as she gently pulled Gabrielle into her arms.

Gabrielle felt all the passion she once did from her kiss as she let go of her contempt for Xena because she was unable to conceive a child. Xena slowly undressed Gabrielle as did Gabrielle to Xena.

Xena locked her blues with Gabrielle’s greens and ran her hands slowly and softly down the front of her body sending shivers down Gabrielle’s spine. Xena placed soft, moist kisses along Gabrielle’s neck down to her breasts as she captured a nipple with her mouth. Gabrielle ran her fingers through Xena’s hair... "I’ve missed you too Xena...I’m sorry." Gabrielle whispered.

Xena picked Gabrielle up in her arms as Gabrielle faced her... "don’t say your sorry just show me how much you love me Gabrielle." Xena answered as Gabrielle looked down into her loving blue eyes.

Gabrielle slid her tongue into Xena’s mouth for a passionate kiss as Xena carried her to the bed while they continued their kiss. Xena laid Gabrielle gently onto the bed and slowly crawled up on her bard. As Xena laid her naked body onto her bride Gabrielle felt her passion mount. Xena’s tongue explored all of Gabrielle’s mouth and broke her kiss as Gabrielle gasped for a breath and opened her eyes to look into those familiar blue eyes.

"Gabrielle...I want you to think about how much you love me and how much you want our love to conceive a child tonight." Xena whispered as she kissed Gabrielle again.

"Only if you do the same baby." Gabrielle whispered through her kiss.

"I started the moment you walked in the door." Xena whispered as she moved her kiss to Gabrielle’s neck. Gabrielle dug her nails into Xena’s back which excited Xena more and she moved her mouth to capture a supple breast.

Gabrielle thought about how much she loved Xena and how she wanted their child to have her sexy blue eyes and her beautiful raven hair as Xena nibbled on her erect nipple increasing her moistness between her legs.

Gabrielle moved her hands softly across Xena’s muscular back as Xena thought about how much she missed her soft touch especially when they made love. Xena thought about how she wanted their child to look exactly like Gabrielle and how she loved Gabrielle more than life itself.

Xena moved her kiss back to Gabrielle’s mouth as Gabrielle slid her hand under Xena in search of her dark curls. She found Xena to be very wet and wasted no time touching her swollen nub.

"Oh, Gabrielle...that feels so good." Xena whispered huskily as she kissed her neck and began to rub her sex against Gabrielle’s hand.

Xena slid her hand down to Gabrielle’s sex and Gabrielle spread her legs wider to allow her lover in. Xena moved her finger inside of Gabrielle as she moved her hips to Xena’s rhythmic motions with her finger in and out of her wet opening.

Xena’s arousal mounted at her lover’s acceptance of her touch and moved her hips faster as did Gabrielle... "Xena...I missed your touch so much...forgive me." Gabrielle whispered.

"I already have." Xena whispered as she kissed Gabrielle with a warm, moist kiss.

They both continued their rhythmic motions until their passion ignited sending them both into their orgasms together. The pair panted to catch their breath from their love making and Xena laid on her bard as Gabrielle held her tightly.

"I love you baby." Gabrielle whispered as she lightly kissed her on the shoulder.

"I love you Gabrielle." Xena answered as she kissed her neck and laid her head down on Gabrielle’s chest to revel in their love.

The trip to the general’s village took a little over three candle marks. As they entered the village Blaise spoke with some locals and inquired as to the general’s home which they pointed her to.

Blaise knocked on the door with Joxer at her side. The door opened and a woman stepped out..."yes." she answered as she glanced between Blaise and Joxer with confusion.

"My name is Blaise and I aah." Blaise stammered to find the right words as the woman interrupted her.

"Calvin has told me great things about you...he loves you as though you’re his sister.

"Your husband has spoken quite fondly of you as well Julia...aah." Blaise stammered not quite able to find the right words to tell her of her husband’s passing.

"How is Calvin?" she asked with a smile as Joxer looked down with sadness.

Tears formed in Blaise’s eyes as she looked into the woman’s eyes and saw fear... "I’m sorry Julia...he’s gone."

"No!" Julia shouted as she burst into tears and fell to the ground as Blaise and Joxer moved to catch her but not in time.

Blaise squatted down... "Julia...I’m so sorry...I considered him a brother and if there’s anything I can do please let me know." Blaise replied sincerely as the woman threw her arms around Blaise. Blaise helped her stand as she hugged Blaise.

Blaise looked at Joxer and gestured to him as he put a small chest filled with dinars inside the home... "my men have prepared a funeral pyre if you so wish for that to be done tonight...I can accompany you."

"Aah...my children." Julia answered with confusion.

"My assistant can watch them if you wish...or you can do the funeral at another time."

"No...we should do it now...I know her would have wanted you to be here and I know you must get back." Julia answered as Blaise escorted the distraught woman for his funeral. Blaise said her goodbyes to her friend as the pyre burned bright and walked back to the house with Julia.

"Julia....please don’t hesitate to ask me for anything...your family will be provided for and remember if there is anything I can do... please let me know." Blaise answered with sadness and thought of Ephiny hoping she would never have to go through what this woman was having to go through.

"Blaise...thank you for bringing him home...he was right about you...that you’re a wonderful person and that you will make a better God of War than your father." she replied with a smile as she remembered that conversation with her husband.

Blaise moved her hair off her face... "Calvin asked me to give this to you." Blaise answered softly as she pulled the pouch out of her vest and handed it to Julia.

Julia began to cry harder as she excepted the pouch... "let me know if I can do anything for you or your family Julia." Blaise replied as she kissed her forehead... "goodbye." Blaise answered as she put her hand on her cheek with her heart filled with sadness and ran her hand down her cheek as she walked away.

"Blaise!" Julia shouted.

Blaise turned around to face Julia... "yes."

"Please be safe." she replied with concern.

Blaise smiled... "I will... thank you." Blaise answered as she mounted Taz and rode back to Troy filled with anger and grief for the loss of her friend.

The group arrived back to Troy weary from the trip they made. Blaise ordered Joxer to get some rest as she checked on the men.

"My lord!" the new general replied as he approached.

"What is it with the lord bit!" Blaise answered with agitation.

"I’m sorry...we were instructed to call you that by your father."

"Figures." Blaise answered with disgust... "just call me Blaise."

"Yes sir." the general winced at what he said.

"You really aren’t earning any brownie points with me general." Blaise snapped.

"I’m sorry Blaise." the general whined.

"Look...if you’re going to be a sniveling idiot...I’ll replace you." Blaise answered coldly.

"I’m not a sniveling idiot and I intend to prove that...Blaise." the man answered tersely.

"That’s better...have the reinforcements arrived general?"

"Drake...aah...call me Drake and yes they have arrived." he answered with a smile.

"Well...Drake." Blaise answered as she looked at him... "it looks like my father took my advice...now, get those men posted."

"Right away!" Drake answered as he headed towards the reinforcements.

Two moons had passed since Blaise last saw Ephiny and their only contact was through the usual messages delivered by Joxer. Joxer delivered the latest scroll to Ephiny with the usual three dozen red roses and headed back to Troy.

Ephiny waddled over the chair to sit down which she found to be very hard to do because she had grown so large during the pregnancy.

Ephiny opened the scroll which read:

Ephiny...I miss you my love.

I imagine our clothes are on the floor as we lay in front of the fireplace.

Can you feel my soft and gentle caress?

It’s so delicate that you cry for more.

I want to feel you cuddle up close to me and lay on my chest as I feel your heart beat close to mine.

I look forward to the day I hold you in my arms again.

Please give the baby my love.

I love you,

Blaise

Ephiny cried as she read the scroll and imagined laying on the floor with Blaise naked entwined in each other’s arms. She imagined Blaise’s soft and gentle caress on her body and wanted so much to be cuddled up on her chest to feel her heart beat close to hers. Ephiny leaned her head against the chair as she closed her eyes lost in her thoughts of Blaise and fell fast asleep.

"Ephiny...honey wake up."

"Blaise!" Ephiny answered as she opened her eyes still groggy from her sleep... "oh, mother." Ephiny replied with disappointment when she realized it wasn’t Blaise.

"Come on honey...let’s get you in bed...I promised Blaise to take good care of you...now in bed you go." Cyrene demanded as she helped Ephiny out of the chair.

Ephiny was glad Cyrene came to the village a moon ago to help her in the later stages of her pregnancy but she could be demanding and stubborn. Ephiny then realized were Blaise and Xena got that trait from.

Cyrene tucked Ephiny in bed... "are you okay?" Cyrene asked with concern.

"I would be much better if Blaise was here."

"I know honey...try to get some sleep." Cyrene answered as she stroked Ephiny’s hair.

"Thanks for all of your help mother...I really appreciate it." Ephiny answered with a gracious smile.

"I have enjoyed being here with you...it has given me a chance to know my grandchilds mother more." Cyrene answered with a smile as she continued to lovingly stroke Ephiny’s hair as she became sleepier and finally drifted off to sleep.

The next morning Ephiny finished breakfast and headed to the royal office to go over daily duties with Gabrielle.

"Good morning Ephiny...how are you feeling today?" Gabrielle asked.

"Not so good Gabrielle...it might have been from something I ate this morning but I feel sick." Ephiny answered with a pale color in her face.

"Well...I’ve heard of those strange food combinations you had from your cravings and they would make me sick too which takes a lot when it comes to food by the way!" Gabrielle laughed.

"Just wait Gabrielle...you’ll get those crazy cravings too." Ephiny answered as she struggled to sit... "whew!" Ephiny exclaimed as she made it into the chair... "ow! my back is killing me!" Ephiny replied in obvious discomfort... "Gabrielle...are you sure you want to go through this?" Ephiny asked with a smile.

"I think it’s a little late for that Ephiny considering I’m two moons pregnant!" Gabrielle chuckled as she handed Ephiny a list of priorities for the day.

"AAAHHH!" Ephiny screamed as she doubled over in pain and gasped for a breath.

"Ephiny!..what’s wrong?" Gabrielle exclaimed with worry as she rushed to her side and held her hand.

"It hurts so bad Gabrielle!" Ephiny answered as she held her side... "I think my water just broke Gabrielle!"

"By the gods Ephiny...you’re not due for another moon!...Guards!...get Xena and the midwife right away!" Gabrielle shouted with urgency... "hold on Ephiny help is on it’s way." Gabrielle replied trying to reassure Ephiny.

"I’m not going anywhere Gabrielle....AAAHHH!" Ephiny yelled as she squeezed Gabrielle’s hand tight.

Xena and the midwife rushed in simultaneously... "what’s wrong?" Xena asked as she looked at Gabrielle and Ephiny out of breath.

"My water broke Xena and I’m in a lot of pain." Ephiny exclaimed through her deep breathing techniques she was performing to ease the pain.

"We need to get her back to the hut so I can check her out." the midwife explained.

Xena and Gabrielle helped Ephiny out of the chair as she doubled over in pain with Xena catching her.

"Here....I’ll carry you Ephiny." Xena replied as she lifted Ephiny up into her arms and carried her back to the hut quickly.

Cyrene saw all of the commotion and followed them into the hut as Xena gently laid Ephiny on the bed.

The midwife began her examination... "Ephiny...it looks like the baby is ready to meet everyone." She replied with a smile.

"No!...not without Blaise here!" Ephiny shouted.

The army was able to fight the Greeks back and declared a small victory at their feat. Blaise watched as the men celebrated but was not in a celebrating mood. She felt something was very wrong but she couldn’t quite figure out what it was.

"Blaise...you must be happy...they’re pulling back." Joxer grinned as he patted her back

"I guess I should be dude but I think something might be wrong with Ephiny." Blaise answered with worry.

"What?...what makes you think that?" Joxer asked confused.

"I don’t know for sure it’s just something that I feel in my heart...go ready the horses Joxer." Blaise ordered as she looked off in the distance trying to sort out her feelings. Blaise grew more worried as her feelings became stronger and her heart raced faster with every thought.

"AAAHHH!" Ephiny shouted in pain as she squeezed Gabrielle and Cyrene’s hand.

"Ephiny...push!" the midwife demanded.

"No!...not without Blaise." Ephiny screamed with anger as she took in deep breaths.

Xena stood over Ephiny head and knelt down... "Ephiny...the baby is going to come out wether Blaise is here or not...honey." Xena replied softly and soothingly as she moved Ephiny’s hair off her sweaty face.

"No...Xena...I’m waiting for Blaise...AAAHHH!" Ephiny screamed as another contraction consumed her while Xena glanced at Gabrielle with concern.

"Ephiny...you’re crowning...think of the baby...you have to push." the midwife instructed her.

"Blaise!" Ephiny shouted as she began to cry... "Aphrodite!...please bring Blaise to me!" she shouted as another contraction came... "owwwww!

"Sweetpea!...I’ve got a great birthday present for you." Aphrodite replied with excitement as she appeared before Blaise.

"I don’t have time for this Aphie...something’s wrong with Ephiny." Blaise answered with worry as she headed towards Taz forgetting it was her birthday today.

"Blaise...that’s why I’m here...Ephiny’s in labor and she asked me to bring you to her so here I am." Aphrodite answered with a smile and a shrug of the shoulders.

"By the gods!" Blaise shouted with a look of shock on her face... "Joxer...bring Taz to the village...go!" she yelled as she ran to Aphrodite... "why didn’t you say that sooner!" Blaise asked with agitation.

"You didn’t give me a chance."

"Let’s go...come on!" Blaise demanded as her heart beat so fast that it felt like it would jump out of her chest.

Aphrodite smiled at her nervousness and put her hand on Blaise’s shoulder as they vanished.

"Come on Ephiny push!"

"No!" Ephiny screamed.

"Come on baby...push." Blaise replied with a smile as she appeared with Aphrodite and dropped her scabbard to the ground after unstraping it. Blaise rushed to Ephiny’s side and took her hand in her own... "I’m here baby."

"Where have you been?" Ephiny yelled with anger.

"Not now...honey...we’re right in the middle of something." Blaise answered with embarrassment as she looked around the hut filled with onlookers.

"AAAHHH!" Ephiny shouted through a contraction as she clutched Blaise’s hand tight.

"Wow!...baby...you’re hurting me!"

Ephiny looked at Blaise with a look of if looks could kill she would be dead. Xena chuckled as she looked at the interaction between the two and thought about what she had to look forward to when Gabrielle delivers their baby making a mental note to not be late. She smiled as she looked at Gabrielle and held her hand.

Blaise kissed Ephiny’s hand and wiped the sweat off her forehead... "you’re doing great baby...come on now...push!" Blaise replied in a soothing voice. Ephiny gave Blaise another terse look as she screamed out in pain... "I know baby...I’m a pig for getting you into this...I’m sorry." Blaise answered as Ephiny gave her a look that the statement was true.

"Go ahead Ephiny push!" the midwife shouted as Ephiny sat part way up to push.

"Oowww!" Ephiny yelled as she closed her eyes and breathed in shallow panting breaths.

Blaise sat behind Ephiny to help hold her up while she pushed and Ephiny leaned back against Blaise... "you’re doing great baby." Blaise whispered in her ear as she kissed her cheek and held her hand which Ephiny promptly squeezed tightly sending jolts of pain through her.

"The head is out now come on and push again Ephiny!" the midwife commanded as Ephiny pushed.

"I love you baby." Blaise whispered... "you’re doing so good baby."

"Blaise...would you shut up!" Ephiny answered with agitation.

"Yes...dear." Blaise answered as she looked at Aphrodite with hurt filled blue eyes.

Aphrodite mouthed ‘it’s a delivery thing and she means nothing by it.’ as she shrugged her shoulders for reassurance.

"Great!...the baby’s out...it’s a little boy!" the midwife exclaimed as the baby wailed from his first breaths.

Ephiny and Blaise cried with tears of joy as Ephiny fell back into Blaise’s arms who wrapped them tightly around her and put her head against Ephiny’s. Blaise kissed her cheek as Ephiny tried to catch her breath.

Blaise moved out of the way so Ephiny could lay down and knelt beside her taking her hand in her own placing a soft kiss on it... "we have a little boy babe!" Blaise replied with excitement as her tears of joy fell down her face and she leaned up to kiss Ephiny.

The midwife cut the umbilical cord and wrapped the baby in a blanket as she stood up to leave the hut with her helpers... "I’m going to take him to the healer hut to be checked over."

Blaise turned to look at her as her smile left her face and was replaced with horror as she jumped up... "no!" Blaise yelled as she ran towards the midwife pushing the onlookers out of the way... "give me our baby!" Blaise demanded as her heart pounded with fear that she would never see her baby again if he left the hut and smiled widely with a chuckle as she looked at her son for the first time. Her heart raced with pride and joy as she looked into his sweet face... "I only want family in here...everyone else...get out... including you!" Blaise demanded with anger as she looked at the midwife experiencing a wide range of emotions at that moment.

"Blaise." Ephiny replied weakly at Blaise’s reaction as everyone else looked the same way except Cyrene who cried and moved to Blaise. She put her arm around Blaise and led her to Ephiny’s side.

"It’s okay honey...no one’s going to take your baby away." Cyrene replied softly and soothingly as Blaise looked into her mother’s eyes then back down to the baby feeling reassured.

She knelt beside Ephiny and showed her the baby... "he’s beautiful Eph." Blaise answered as she began to cry.

"AAAHHH!" Ephiny screamed in pain as her eyes rolled back in her head and she gasped for air.

"Ephiny!" Blaise shouted with concern... "mother...take the baby and make sure he’s okay." Blaise replied as she handed the baby to Cyrene who took the baby to the table to check him over... "Ephiny...baby." Blaise replied with worry as she took Ephiny’s limp hand in her own while all the joy in her heart was replaced by fear of losing Ephiny again... "Xena...what’s wrong?" Blaise asked frightfully.

"I’m not sure Blaise!" Xena answered with worry as she checked Ephiny’s pulse.

"No!...not again!" Blaise shouted and cried as she kissed Ephiny’s hand.

"Blaise...she’s got a pulse but I’m not sure what’s wrong." Xena answered frantically as she checked Ephiny over.

"Ephiny!" Blaise shouted fearful... "come on baby...wake up!" Blaise pleaded as she held Ephiny’s face in her hands while Ephiny gasped for air and screamed out in pain as she opened her eyes.

"What’s wrong?" Blaise asked her with confusion and fear.

"Didn’t I have the baby already?" Ephiny yelled out in pain.

"Yes...a beautiful little boy Eph...why?"

"It feels like I didn’t deliver it!...AAAHHH!" Ephiny screamed through the pain.

Xena and Blaise looked at one another and moved down to check Ephiny. They looked at one another again and smiled... "Eph...we’re having twins!" Blaise shouted with excitement.

"By the gods!...you mean I have to go through that pain again!" Ephiny yelled through her labored breathing as Blaise rushed behind her to help steady her as Ephiny sat up.

"Okay...Ephiny...push!...the baby is making it’s way out!" Xena informed her excitedly.

Cyrene and Gabrielle looked at one another and smiled... "I’m going to be a grandma twice today!...who could ask for more?" Cyrene replied with excitement and joy.

Ephiny pushed as hard as she could while she squeezed Blaise’s hand... "Ow!" Ephiny screamed as she gasped for deep breaths.

"Another really good push and that should do it Ephiny...come on now...push!" Xena instructed her.

"You know Xena...you can really be demanding and it’s easy for you to say considering you’re sitting down there!" Ephiny shouted with agitation.

"But it will all be worth it when you see your baby’s face...now push!" Xena answered with a smile.

"Come on baby...one more and it’s over with." Blaise replied softly as she kissed Ephiny’s cheek.

Ephiny pushed as she squeezed Blaise’s hand again... "AAAHHH!" Ephiny screamed and fell back into Blaise’s waiting arms when she felt the pressure release as the baby came out.

"You okay honey?" Blaise asked as she wiped the sweat off of Ephiny’s face and kissed her on the forehead.

"I’m feeling better now!" Ephiny answered as she worked to calm her labored breathing.

Xena looked at the pair and smiled with tears in her eyes as she held the wailing baby up... "it’s a little girl!"

Ephiny and Blaise laughed through sobs as Blaise held Ephiny tightly and kissed her cheek... "I love you Eph." Blaise whispered in Ephiny’s ear and kissed her again.

Cyrene cried with happiness as did Gabrielle who couldn’t wait to see the joy in Xena’s face when they delivered their child. She hoped that day would come soon and that the god’s would bless them with a child.

"It just got better Gabrielle!...I have a granddaughter and a grandson!" Cyrene replied through her tears as Gabrielle hugged her.

"Blaise...help me with the umbilical cord." Xena instructed her sister as Blaise gently laid Ephiny back on the bed.

"What do I do Xena." Blaise asked nervously.

"Cut the cord here while I hold her." Xena instructed Blaise as she pointed to the area where she wanted it cut.

"Okay...but I won’t hurt the baby or Ephiny will I?" Blaise asked nervously as Ephiny smiled while she listened to her wife.

"No." Xena laughed.... "go ahead."

Blaise attempted to cut the umbilical cord but her hand shook so much she couldn’t do it... "Blaise...calm down." Xena replied with a soothing voice as she put her hand on Blaise’s to calm her nervous sister.

Blaise looked at Xena then back to the umbilical cord as Xena guided her hand to the place she needed to make the cut. Blaise wiped the sweat from her brow after she made the cut and looked at Xena with a smile.

"Blaise...breath!" Xena answered with a laugh as Blaise let out her breath and took in another deep one never realizing she was holding her breath until Xena pointed it out to her.

Xena wiped the baby off and wrapped her in a blanket to hand to Blaise. Blaise smiled lovingly as she looked into her daughter’s face for the first time while Cyrene approached to get a closer look at her granddaughter.

Blaise smiled with tears of joy streaming down her face as she looked at Cyrene... "mother...this is your granddaughter...Jordyn." Blaise replied as she handed her daughter to her mother. Cyrene broke down and cried at the gesture of Blaise giving her daughter the name that Cyrene would given her had Ares not intervened. Blaise kissed her mother’s cheek as Cyrene took her to the table to clean her granddaughter and check her over.

Aphrodite stood by the table crying as Gabrielle tried to console her and tend to the new baby boy... "I’m so happy!" Aphrodite whined as Gabrielle rubbed her arm to console her.

"Okay...Ephiny one more push so, we can get everything out and then I’ll put the stitches in." Xena informed Ephiny as she followed Xena’s instructions.

Blaise sat on the bed next to Ephiny who closed her eyes from exhaustion and watched her lovingly. Blaise brushed her thumb lightly across Ephiny’s cheek and thought about how much she loved her. Ephiny opened her eyes in response to the gentle stroke of Blaise’s finger and looked up into loving blue eyes.

"Hey, beautiful." Blaise replied with a loving smile as she leaned down and softly kissed Ephiny’s lips.

"I’m sure I don’t look very beautiful right now Blaise." Ephiny answered with doubt.

"You’re always beautiful in my eyes Eph." Blaise answered with a smile and another kiss... "are you feeling better?" Blaise asked with concern as she leaned close to Ephiny.

"I feel a lot better now." Ephiny answered with a smile as she wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck and ran her fingers through her hair.

"Xena’s not hurting you is she?...because if she is I’ll kick her warrior princess butt for you." Blaise answered with a chuckle which was shared by Ephiny.

"I never feel pain when I look into those incredible blue eyes of your’s Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile as Blaise leaned down and kissed her.

Blaise leaned her forehead against Ephiny’s forehead... "can you believe we have twins?"

"Aah...considering where they came from...yes." Ephiny answered with a laugh as she rolled Blaise’s hair in her fingers.

"You had me so worried honey...I don’t think my heart has slowed down yet." Blaise admitted.

"I can see that babe...you’re hair is soaked!...settle down honey...I’m fine." Ephiny answered reassuringly to calm Blaise.

"Well...mommie...would you like to see your twins?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"Yes...more than anything." Ephiny answered excitedly.

"I’ll have to pry them away from Grandma, Auntie Aphrodite and Auntie Gabrielle but I don’t think I’ll get any resistance considering their mommie wants to meet them." Blaise teased and leaned down for a kiss. "They’re absolutely gorgeous just like you Eph...I love you babe." Blaise answered with a soul searing kiss before sitting back up.

Blaise smiled and brushed Ephiny’s hair off her face as Ephiny took Blaise’s hand to kiss the palm... "I love you too." Ephiny answered with a smile as Blaise stood up and gently took her son from Gabrielle. Her son was wrapped in a blue blanket that Aphrodite had given him.

"He’s beautiful Blaise." Aphrodite answered with a smile.

"You made this all possible...thank you." Blaise answered as she kissed her. Blaise looked down into her son’s face and was consumed by pride and joy in her heart as tears formed in her blue eyes... "hey, buddy...meet your mommie." Blaise replied softly as she knelt beside Ephiny and handed her their son.

Ephiny looked at her son and her face lit up with happiness... "Blaise...he looks just like you!" Ephiny answered with excitement and a smile... "he’s gorgeous!"

"Wait until you see our daughter...she’s very beautiful." Blaise answered with a pride filled smile as she ran her finger along the baby’s hair. Blaise turned to Xena... "is Eph okay?"

"Yep...she’ll be good as new when I finish with the stitches but she’ll have to take it easy for awhile until they heal." Xena informed her.

"Yes...boss!" Ephiny exclaimed as Blaise turned back to Ephiny and leaned down to kiss her son gently on the head before standing to get her daughter.

Blaise took her daughter from Cyrene and knelt beside Ephiny on the opposite side of her son... "she looks just like you and she has your gorgeous eyes honey." Blaise replied adoringly as she laid the baby on Ephiny’s chest.

"She’s beautiful Blaise." Ephiny answered lovingly as she looked at her baby girl.

Blaise put her finger under her son’s hand and he grasped her finger tightly as her heart fluttered with excitement. She turned and looked at her daughter who was snuggled up against Ephiny and softly rubbed her hand over her blond hair. She smiled lovingly as Ephiny looked at her... "they’re hair is so soft." Blaise answered with a chuckle.

Cyrene, Gabrielle and Aphrodite approached the bed to look at the twins... "they are so beautiful Ephiny." Gabrielle replied with tears in her eyes.

"Thanks Gabrielle and Aphrodite...thank you very much." Ephiny answered appreciatively.

"They are absolutely gorgeous!...but then again, beauty runs in our family!" Aphrodite answered as everyone laughed... "I’m glad I could help."

Blaise looked up to her aunt... "how did you sneak the pink blanket here Aphie?" Blaise teased.

"Blaise...she’s a girl...she needed a pink blanket." Aphrodite whined and pouted. "Besides, these blankets were your’s when you were a baby... I gave you a pink one and your father had a fit so, we settled for blue because I told him a black one was unacceptable!" Aphrodite explained.

"These were my blankets?" Blaise asked surprised with a smile.

"Yes...they are your’s sweetpea."

"Thank you for saving them and giving them to our children." Blaise answered with a appreciative smile.

Aphrodite noticed Cyrene was upset from her story of Blaise as a baby and put her hand on her shoulder for comfort... "I’m sorry...I didn’t mean to hurt you."

"No...it’s just sad that I missed out on that part of Blaise’s life but I have two beautiful grandchildren to enjoy now." Cyrene answered with a strained smile.

"Okay...I’m finished...let me take a look at those little rascals." Xena replied excitedly as she walked over and knelt beside Blaise to take a look. Xena put her arm around Blaise as she looked at the two bundles of joy and was overwhelmed with happiness. "Blaise...Ephiny...they are absolutely adorable!" Xena stated emphatically with a smile as she hugged Blaise... "can I hold your son?"

"Of course, Auntie Xena!" Blaise answered with a smile as she looked at Xena who jumped up and went to the other side of the bed to hold her nephew.

"What is his name?" Gabrielle asked.

Blaise looked at Ephiny with a smile and looked back at Gabrielle... "his name is Chayce which means he’ll be a great hunter like his mommie." Blaise answered with pride and smiled as she kissed Ephiny’s forehead.

Xena carefully picked the newborn up and cradled him in her arms... "hello, Chayce...I’m your Auntie Xena...let me see those eye’s that everyone is going crazy over." She replied as she gently rubbed her finger over his forehead. Gabrielle leaned her chin against Xena’s arm to get a closer look as the baby opened his eyes... "they’re right...you have beautiful blue eyes." Xena answered with a smile while she rubbed her finger on his cheek. Chayce turned his face to Xena’s finger and began to suckle it... "I think we have a hungry young man here...let me give you back to mommie so, you can eat." the warrior responded softly as she leaned down and gently kissed his forehead. Xena laid Chayce back down on Ephiny as she stood behind Gabrielle... "Let’s give them some privacy." Xena replied as she nudged Gabrielle along.

"We’ll see you later." Cyrene replied as they left the hut.

"Babes and babies...Auntie Aphie will be back soon with presents for my new little sweetpeas!" she squealed with excitement as she touched each baby’s head.

"Easy on the pink!" Blaise teased as Aphrodite blew her a kiss and vanished.

Blaise looked at Ephiny with a loving smile... "you okay honey?" she asked as she brushed the hair off Ephiny’s face.

"Sore and tired but other than that I’m perfect!" Ephiny smiled... "can you open my shirt so they can eat?"

"Sure." Blaise answered as she gently moved the twins away to open Ephiny’s shirt. Blaise gently placed the babies by her breasts and lightly rubbed Chayce’s cheek on the side closest to her nipple causing him to turn toward his food source as she did the same with Jordyn who responded as her brother did.

Blaise smiled lovingly as she watched the children eat their first meal... "how did you know to do that?" Ephiny asked in amazement.

"I have a nephew don’t ya know and I’m not as dumb as I look." Blaise laughed.

"You are not dumb Blaise and you never cease to amaze me!"

"I used to do that to Bliss to get him to take his bottle when I would babysit him." Blaise answered as she sat in amazement while she watched the twins suckle Ephiny’s breasts and she reached up to gently rub their backs.

Blaise was overwhelmed with so much joy, happiness and love that tears rolled down her cheeks as she gazed at her beautiful children.

"Hey, what’s wrong babe?" Ephiny asked with concern as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair.

"Nothing’s wrong...I’m just overwhelmed with happiness right now." Blaise answered as she glanced sideways to look at Ephiny. "I’m a wimp of a future God of War huh?"

Ephiny looked at her lovingly... "no, you’re just a caring one." Ephiny answered as she lightly brushed the back of her hand against Blaise’s face as Blaise kissed her hand.

"I think they’re finished." Blaise observed.

"Blaise...put your finger in the baby’s mouth before you take them away to eliminate the suction."

"Okay." Blaise answered in acknowledgment of her instructions as she put her pinky finger in Chayce’s mouth and moved him off of Ephiny and did the same with Jordyn... "I’ll take Chayce and try to burp him honey." Blaise answered as she picked him up and laid him over her shoulder while she began to lightly pat his back to produce a burp.

Ephiny worked on Jordyn as she struggled to stay awake but loved the feeling of her daughter in her arms. Chayce let out a loud burp and Blaise turned to Ephiny sharing a laugh.

"He definitely takes after you in that department." Ephiny chuckled as Jordyn also burped.

Blaise smiled as they shared many firsts with their children... "why don’t you get some sleep baby...you’ve got to be exhausted."

"Oh, yeah...I am very tired!" Ephiny answered with a yawn.

"Would you mind if I showed off our adorable twins?"

"No...you can show them off on one condition." Ephiny answered with a mischievous smile.

"Anything."

"Kiss me and tell me how much you love me!"

"Deal." Blaise answered with a smile and knelt before her placing Chayce down on the bed. Blaise looked into Ephiny’s eyes lovingly... "baby...I love you with every ounce of my being and I always will." Blaise replied with a smile as she slowly leaned down and kissed Ephiny sensually... "thank you for giving us such beautiful children." Blaise whispered.

"Honey...you seem to forget you had a part in them as well." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise.

"Yeah...but you had them Eph and that means more to me than you will ever know." Blaise answered as she kissed Ephiny again and stood up... "okay...cutiepies...time to show you two off and break a lot of women’s hearts!" Blaise exclaimed with excitement as she cradled the twins in her muscular arms... "say bye-bye mommie." Blaise replied in babytalk as she turned the babies to Ephiny who smiled lovingly.

"Bye darling’s!" Ephiny answered with a wave.

Blaise exited the door as Ephiny closed her eyes for some much needed rest and heard Blaise announce... "gather around to see my gorgeous babies." as she laughed with the sounds of happy amazons checking the kids out.

Ephiny smiled and thought about how caring, loving and adorable Blaise is with the children. She didn’t think she could love Blaise anymore than she already does... ‘I was wrong about that one. I love her more today than ever.’ Ephiny replied softly. Ephiny felt totally at peace, full of happiness and as if her life were complete as she fell asleep.

Blaise showed the excited amazons the twins and headed over to Cyrene’s hut. Blaise entered with a proud look on her face to find Xena and Gabrielle visiting with their mother.

"Let me hold my grand babies." Cyrene asked as she motioned for Blaise to bring them to her.

Blaise placed the children in her mother’s arms and sat down... "how’s Ephiny?" Xena asked with worry.

"She’s asleep...finally...she’s exhausted but you know she won’t admit it."

"Sounds like Ephiny." Gabrielle chuckled.

"That’s good...she’ll be up and about before you know it. Now...mother don’t be a baby hog...let me hold my niece." Xena asked as she moved towards her with a smile.

"Oh, Xena!..I just got them." Cyrene whined.

"Mother...don’t mess with the warrior princess now give her up...come on!" Xena teased as she reached her arms out to pick up Jordyn with Cyrene sticking her tongue out at Xena with a scrunched up face.

"That’s a nice face to teach your grandchildren on their first day in the world." Xena teased.

"She’s my daughter alright...she already has the women fighting over her." Blaise answered with a cocky laugh.

"By the gods...Blaise!...with all of the excitement we forgot it’s your birthday too." Cyrene answered with disgust at herself for forgetting.

"Mother...don’t worry about it...how could I have ever had a happier one than today’s?" Blaise answered with a smile.

Xena walked over to Blaise... "say happy birthday to mom." Xena replied in babytalk as she held Jordyn in front of Blaise.

"Thanks sweetie and happy birthday to you too." Blaise answered as she kissed her daughter.

"Happy birthday Blaise." Xena answered with a smile as she planted a kiss on her sister’s cheek.

Xena sat down next to Gabrielle as the two of them cooed at Jordan. Gabrielle sat up and looked at Blaise then Xena strangely.

Blaise and Xena looked back at Gabrielle with bewilderment and replied in unison... "what?"

"It’s just really freaky to see the future God of War and the Warrior Princess talking like a baby!" Gabrielle answered with a laugh which was shared by Cyrene.

"I don’t think you should be a bard Gabrielle." Blaise answered as she moved over to Gabrielle and leaned over her... "you should be a friggin comedian!" Blaise answered as she licked Gabrielle’s face.

"Blaise!...gods that is so gross!" Gabrielle replied as she whacked Blaise on the arm who laughed along with Xena.

Gabrielle turned to Xena as she wiped her face... "don’t look at me...you deserved it." Xena answered shaking her head and looked down at Jordyn... "didn’t she?"

Blaise leaned down to Gabrielle’s ear as Gabrielle leaned away laughing... "go away Blaise."

"I didn’t hear you complaining about my tongue being gross before." Blaise whispered with a laugh as Xena joined in on the laughter.

"I swear...you two are just alike...pigs!"

"But you love us!" Xena answered arrogantly with a laugh.

"Can’t do anything else with you two I guess!" Gabrielle answered with a laugh as she tickled Jordyn’s tummy.

"I’m gonna go get Ephiny some food and check on her...would you mind if I left the twins with you until she finishes eating?"

"We don’t mind at all...besides, we weren’t planning on giving them up just yet anyway." Cyrene answered with a smile as she softly kissed Chayce on his forehead.

"Great...thank you." Blaise answered as she headed out the door towards the food hut.

Blaise grabbed some soup and bread for Ephiny to eat and brought the meal back to their hut. Blaise put the tray down on the table and lightly kissed Ephiny on the cheek before sitting next to her on the bed.

"Hey...you okay?" Blaise whispered as Ephiny’s sleepy hazel eyes met loving blues.

"A little sore." Ephiny answered as she looked at her lover with a smile... "how are the twins?" Ephiny asked with concern.

"They are perfect and our daughter already has women fighting over her." Blaise informed Ephiny with a cocky smile.

"She’s definately your daughter then." Ephiny answered with a smile and a poke in the ribs as Blaise laughed.

"I brought you some food...do you want to try and eat?" Blaise asked as she lifted the soup bowl up.

"I would love to visit the outhouse and then I’ll try to eat something." Ephiny answered as she shifted in the bed.

"Okay...let me help you up then." Blaise answered as she helped Ephiny to a sitting position.

"Oww!...I don’t know if I’ll be able to walk Blaise." Ephiny answered as she grimaced in pain.

"I’ll carry you baby." Blaise answered with a smile as she gathered her wife up in her strong arms with Ephiny wrapping her arms around Blaise’s neck... "you okay?" Blaise asked with concern as she looked into her soulmate’s eyes for reassurance.

"Much better now that I’m in your arms." Ephiny answered with a smile as Blaise leaned in and kissed her. They continued their kiss out of the hut to the outhouse.

Blaise helped Ephiny in the outhouse and carried her back to bed when she was finished. Blaise sat on the side of the bed with Ephiny sitting up facing her and began to feed her the soup.

"Blaise...honey...you don’t have to do that."

"I know...but I want too." Blaise answered with a smile as she kissed Ephiny.

Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise to deepen her kiss while Blaise slipped the soup bowl back on the nightstand. Blaise moved closer to Ephiny as she continued her exploration of Ephiny’s mouth with her tongue... "it feels good to be able to hold you close to me now that I no longer have a big belly in the way!" Ephiny replied with a smile as she captured Blaise’s lips for a long, moist kiss.

"Happy birthday to Blaise, Chayce and Jordyn...happy birthday to you." Xena, Gabrielle and Cyrene sang as they entered the hut startling the kissing lovers. Gabrielle carried a tray with three muffins containing one lighted candle stuck in the middle of each and stopped in front of Blaise.

"Baby...it’s your birthday?" Ephiny asked as she put her hand on Blaise’s arm.

"Yes...it is and you sure gave me a wonderful birthday present." Blaise answered with a smile as she turned to Ephiny.

"I’m such a terrible wife...I didn’t know when it was and I never asked you...I’m sorry." Ephiny answered with disgust at herself because she didn’t know.

"Hey, don’t worry about it." Blaise answered as she kissed her wife... "now, blow out a candle for Jordyn while I blow one out for Chayce and myself." Blaise answered as her and Ephiny leaned toward the tray to blow the candles out.

"Happy birthday!" everyone cheered in unison.

"Thanks...oh, it looks like we will be celebrating a certain warrior princess’ birthday also in a moon...correct?" Blaise asked with a mischievous smile.

"Don’t even think about it Blaise." Xena answered sternly as she pointed at Blaise.

"I’ll have to cook something up really good for you sister!" Blaise teased.

"You behave!" Xena answered.

"I just thought of something scary." Ephiny replied with a smile.

"What?" Blaise asked confused as everyone looked at Ephiny waiting for her response.

"How am I going to live with the three of you who were born in the month ruled by Pluto?" Ephiny asked.

"Aah...love us?" Blaise asked with a sly smile.

"It’s a little scary to think about having three very intense, possessive, obstinate, secretive and jealous people all under the same roof." Ephiny answered with a laugh.

"Well...just remember we are very loyal and fortunately for you we are compatible with you!" Blaise answered with a laugh as she kissed Ephiny... "besides, I thought you reveled in my possessiveness." Blaise answered with a sly grin as Ephiny smiled and pulled Blaise down for a kiss.

"Yes I do revel in it and I find it very sexy especially in bed." Ephiny whispered through her kiss causing Blaise to laugh and blush at her comment.

"Well...I must tell you that these two very intense little individual’s need to be changed and they’re very hungry." Xena answered with a smile.

"Oh, sure keep them until they need to be changed and then give them back." Blaise teased as she took Jordyn from Xena... "did that mean old Auntie Xena not change you?" Blaise asked Jordyn in babytalk as she looked at her daughter who looked inquisitively around at her surroundings.

"Hey...watch it with the old thing!...the good thing about being an aunt is that you get to spoil them and give them back." Xena answered with a laugh.

"And what do you intend to do with our baby...warrior princess?" Gabrielle asked with a raised eyebrow.

"Well...don’t you remember you said you were doing all of the diaper changes?"

"If I’m going through the torture Ephiny just went through you’re doing the diapers...miss thing!" Gabrielle demanded with a laugh as she hugged Xena.

"Yes...boss!" Xena answered to appease Gabrielle despite the fact that she was shaking her head and mouthing no way to Blaise... "let’s go honey and leave the newborns to their mom’s."

"Bye." Gabrielle answered as her and Xena left the hut.

"Do you need me to help you change them honey?" Cryene asked hoping Blaise would except her offer.

"No...I can get it but thanks anyway mother." Blaise answered with a smile as she laid Jordyn on the changing table.

"Okay...then." Cyrene answered with disappointment as she lowered her head and turned to leave.

Blaise saw that her mother was dejected and wanted to help... "ya know on second thought I could use some help if you don’t mind." Blaise asked with a smile as her mother rushed back over to help and took Chayce from Ephiny to change him while Blaise changed Jordyn.

Blaise and Cyrene finished changing the twins as Ephiny ate her meal and watched Blaise with amazement at how gentle and caring she was with the babies.

"Thanks mother..I’ll see you in the morning." Blaise replied with a smile.

"You’ve made me very happy and proud by naming your daughter Jordyn...that’s a great honor for me Blaise." Cyrene explained with cloudy blue eyes.

"I’m glad I could bring some more happiness in your life mother." Blaise answered as she hugged her mother.

Cyrene broke the hug and went over to Ephiny... "congratulations honey...your children are beautiful." Cyrene replied with a loving smile as she kissed Ephiny’s forehead.

"Thank you mother." Ephiny answered with a smile as she looked up to Cyrene and clenched her hand.

"Goodnight everyone."

"Nite mother." Blaise replied as she picked up the twins and watched her mother leave the hut... "are you two hungry?" Blaise asked as the twins laid against her chest and heard a knock at the door.

"Who in tartarus." Blaise replied as her voice trailed off and she opened the door... "Joxer!...dude...look at my kids!"

"Whoa!...you were right about something being up with Ephiny!" he answered in shock to seeing two babies.

"This is our son Chayce." Blaise replied as she turned her shoulder to show him a sleepy little boy... "and our daughter Jordyn." Blaise answered as she turned so he could see Jordyn.

"They are so cute Blaise...congratulations!...you too Ephiny!" Joxer replied as he looked over Blaise’s shoulder and waved to Ephiny.

"Thank you Joxer!" Ephiny shouted from the bed.

Blaise looked at Joxer and whispered... "flowers...lots of them...sometime tomorrow okay?’

Joxer winked at Blaise acknowledging her request... "have a good evening and congratulations again!"

"Good night Jox." Blaise answered as she closed the door and turned towards Ephiny..."it’s dinner time honey." Blaise smiled as she walked towards the bed while Ephiny struggled to lay down on the bed without causing more pain... "you okay?" Blaise asked with concern as she knelt beside the bed.

"I’m still in a lot of pain." Ephiny answered as she grimaced and finally laid down.

Blaise reached over and opened Ephiny’s shirt to expose her breasts while she laid Jordyn down next to one of her breast’s to begin her feeding. Blaise made sure Jordyn was settled and suckling the breast and moved to the other side of the bed and laid Chayce down to start his feeding.

Blaise undressed and laid on her side stretching her long legs out and propped her head up on one hand as she watched her children lovingly. Blaise moved her hand up on Ephiny’s arm which held the twins in place.

"Go to sleep honey...I’ll take care of the babies when they’re finished...you need your rest." Blaise replied lovingly.

Ephiny smiled... "thanks...I’ll try to stay awake as long as I can...I love you Blaise." Ephiny answered as she struggled to keep her eyes open.

Blaise leaned down and kissed her lips softly... "I love you Eph." Blaise whispered as Ephiny fell fast asleep with her warrior watching over their family.

Blaise burped the children when they finished eating and laid them on Ephiny’s chest as they snuggled close to her neck. She smiled and kissed their small heads softly before placing a soft kiss on Ephiny’s lips. She continued to watch over them overwhelmed that they were her children and she thought about how much she loved Ephiny as the twins fell asleep. She didn’t think she could love anyone as much as she does Ephiny and felt that her life was complete with her in and the children in it. Blaise thought about how lucky she was and that she couldn’t ask for anything more for her life.

Blaise watched as the twins slept against their mother and she cuddled up close to Ephiny to wrap her muscular, protective arms around her and the children as she closed her eyes to rest. The children woke two more times during the night hungry and Blaise would move them to their favorite food source until they finished and she would attend to them as the doting mother she had become.

After a week passed Ephiny was able to get up and move around with less pain and with more strength. Blaise had gotten into a routine with the twins and had a sense as to what and when they needed something but she was exhausted. Blaise tried to hide her exhaustion from the others and would sneak shut eye when at all possible.

Blaise woke to begin her routine of the day by getting the twins fed, dressed and would then head off for Ephiny’s breakfast.

"Blaise...honey...I can get my own food." Ephiny replied as she got out of bed to dress.

"No...Eph...you still need your rest and you don’t want to pull the stitches out." Blaise answered as she continued to dress half asleep.

"Blaise...I’m fine and Xena said the stitches are healed enough to come out... I’m going to get breakfast this morning because I can’t have you going out looking like that." Ephiny answered with a chuckle as she looked Blaise up and down.

"What do you mean Eph?" Blaise asked hurt and confused.

"Blaise...honey." Ephiny answered as she moved closer to Blaise... "you put your boxer shorts on over your pants."

Blaise stopped tying her shirt and looked down at her pants with a laugh as she looked at Ephiny... "I wondered why it felt so strange...I think you’re right...I do need some sleep." Blaise answered with a smile... "you gonna be okay?" Blaise asked with concern.

"Yes...baby." Ephiny answered lovingly as she put her hands on Blaise’s hips and looked up at her... "now, take off that unfashionable outfit and get in bed." Ephiny answered as she wrapped her arms around Blaise’s waist and leaned in for a kiss.

Ephiny slid her hands down to Blaise’s firm backside as she deepened her kiss and gently clutched the ass sending a warmth straight to Blaise’s center.

"Are you trying to seduce me Eph?’ Blaise asked through her kiss.

"Well...it has been quite awhile." Ephiny answered as she moved her hand around to the front and rubbed her hand over Blaise’s sex.

"Uhmmm." Blaise moaned to her touch as Ephiny broke their kiss and smiled as she backed away from Blaise.

"It’s too bad you’re so tired." Ephiny smiled mishceviously and winked as she walked away.

"Aah...honey...I...uh...I’m not that tired." Blaise stammered with disappointment as she was very aroused.

Ephiny turned with a smile and blew her a kiss as she exited the hut... "and you tell me I’m a tease!" Blaise replied as she shook her head and took a deep breath to calm her racing heart from the excitement. The children began to cry as her heart calmed... "oh, man!" Blaise whined as she picked the kids up and held them on each shoulder... "come on sweetie pies...mom needs some sleep...how about if we all take a nap...huh?" Blaise asked as she laid down on the bed with the children laying on each shoulder.

They whimpered for a few minutes and fell asleep as Blaise rubbed their backs gently. Blaise could feel their soft breath on her neck and loved the feeling of their soft skin against hers. She could feel their tiny little heartbeats slow as they fell asleep and thought about how much she loved her children and how happy they have made her. Blaise closed her eyes and was fast asleep to join her children.

"Ephiny!...what are you doing up?" Gabrielle asked with concern.

"I’m fine Gabrielle...really...it’s time for me to get up and get going...besides, Blaise is exhausted." Ephiny answered reassuringly with a smile.

"She has been so sweet." Gabrielle answered with a smile... "it’s incredible how she took charge to help out and is so gentle with you and the twins...but why didn’t she ask us for help?"

"Gabrielle...I think you know the answer to the last part of that question." Ephiny answered with a shared laugh.

"How did we fall in love with the two most stubborn people in the world?" Gabrielle asked with a laugh.

"Because we kept it in the family!" Ephiny answered with a laugh... "she has been incredibly sweet, gentle and loving...I guess people don’t see that about her. They just see her as the future God of War and assume she is like Ares." Ephiny answered as she gathered a tray with breakfast for her and Blaise.

"Very true and looks can be deceiving that’s for sure. Look at Xena...everyone thinks the same about her but she’s a big teddybear...well...with her family she is." Gabrielle answered with a laugh as Ephiny joined in.

"It just runs in the family I guess." Ephiny answered.

"Here let me help you." Gabrielle offered as she grabbed the drinks for Ephiny.

"Thanks...I appreciate the help." Ephiny answered with a smile as they headed back to Ephiny’s hut.

They entered the hut to find Blaise and the twins sound asleep on the bed with Blaise still wearing her boxers over her pants. Ephiny chuckled as she walked closer to the bed and smiled. She waved Gabrielle over to the bed and looked at Gabrielle while she pointed to the twins who had their hands on top of one another’s and they rested them over Blaise’s heart.

"Oh, that is so sweet." Gabrielle answered in a whisper with a smile as she looked at Ephiny who had tears in her eyes... "what’s up with Blaise’s outfit?" Gabrielle asked with a scrunched up face.

"I told you she was exhausted." Ephiny laughed softly through her tears... "Oh, look at Jordyn...she’s playing with Blaise’s hair." Ephiny answered excitedly.

Gabrielle moved closer for a better look to see Jordyn sleeping with her free hand up in Blaise’s hair and rubbed the dark hair between her tiny fingers. Gabrielle looked back at Ephiny with a smile... "they are so adorable... I can’t wait until we have our baby so we can experience the same joy you two have with the twins." Gabrielle answered with a smile.

"Me too...so, then I can be an aunt and spoil them." Ephiny answered with a laugh.

"It’s not like you won’t spoil your kids Ephiny." Gabrielle answered with a mischievous grin.

"That’s the one who is going to be the one to spoil the kids." Ephiny laughed as she pointed to Blaise.

"Who?...the one that puts her pants on before her boxer shorts?" Gabrielle teased with a laugh as she pointed at her pants.

"It is pretty funny though." Ephiny answered with a shared laugh.

"Yes...it is...I’m gonna get going...I’ll see you later."

"Okay...thanks for the help."

"Give those two little pumpkin’s a kiss from their Auntie Gabrielle." she answered with a smile as she patted Ephiny on the arm.

"They will enjoy that." Ephiny answered with a smile as Gabrielle left the hut.

Ephiny moved to the bed and sat down next to her very sleepy family. She ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair and thought about how much she loved her. ‘I never thought I would be this happy or that I would ever love someone as much as I do Blaise. I am so lucky to have such a thoughtful, caring, loving partner in her and two beautiful children that she simply adores.’ Ephiny thought to herself as she lovingly watched them sleep. Ephiny leaned down and kissed each of their heads softly before laying down to cuddle up close to her family as she slid her arm onto Blaise’s which held the children close to her.

Ephiny woke to the cries of her twins for their midday meal. She picked Chayce up and held him as she put her hand on Blaise’s shoulder to wake her... "Honey...can you help me with Jordyn?" Ephiny asked softly. Blaise opened her sleepy blue eyes unaware of what was going on and looked at Ephiny confused... "I need to feed Jordyn...can you help me with her?" Ephiny answered softly.

Blaise looked at Jordyn and picked her up to place her on Ephiny for her feeding... "you okay?" Blaise asked as she cleared her throat and rolled onto her side. She cuddled up next to Ephiny and wrapped her arm around her.

"I’m fine go back to sleep babe." Ephiny whispered as she felt Blaise’s breath against her neck who had obviously already fallen asleep.

Ephiny fed the children, burped them and clothed them as Blaise continued to sleep oblivious to her noisy surroundings. Ephiny heard a knock at the door and answered to find Cyrene there.

"Hello mother...come on in... I was just dressing the twins." Ephiny answered as she invited her in and headed back to attend to the twins.

"I was wondering if you were feeling up to a walk." Cyrene asked softly as she noticed Blaise sleeping... "I guess the secret to getting the best of my children is giving Xena too much port and having Blaise run ragged by her own twins." Cyrene laughed as she looked over to her sleeping child.

"That’s for sure...I’m grateful she is here and not on the battlefield sleeping that way because I would be very worried then...okay...let’s go on that walk with grandma so, your mother can get the sleep she needs." Ephiny replied to the twins as she handed Chayce to Cyrene.

"Hey, pumpkin." Cyrene whispered in babytalk as she held her grandson close... "are you sure you’re up to this Ephiny?" Cyrene asked with concern.

"I am feeling stronger every day and it will be nice to get out for some fresh air." Ephiny answered with a smile as they headed out of the hut. "Let’s go down towards the lake mother."

"That sounds like a great idea." Cyrene answered with excitement as they made their way through the village.

The pair made it to the lake and sat down exhausted... "it has never taken that long to get down to the lake before." Ephiny answered with a sigh as she sat down and leaned against the tree.

"Well...that’s because we had every amazon in the village checking out my gorgeous grandchildren." Cyrene answered with a smile as she tickled Chayce’s tummy and watched him laugh and threw his arms up and down in excitement.

The pair had a moment of awkward silence and Ephiny knew something was on Cyrene’s mind... "mother...is something bothering you?" Ephiny asked as she looked at Cyrene.

"Yes...there is dear...I spoke with Gabrielle and she told me of the amazon traditions regarding sons. Have you told Blaise about them yet?" Cyrene answered as she looked her daughter -in-law squarely in the eye.

Ephiny knelt her head down to look at Jordyn... "no...mother...I haven’t." Ephiny answered with guilt.

"Oh, Ephiny...why not?" Cyrene asked with disappointment and concern.

"I haven’t found the right time to do it mother. I know Blaise is going to be hurt by it and she is so happy right now that I don’t want to tell her just yet to ruin it."

"There never really is a good time Ephiny to tell your mate that your son will not be accepted into her wife’s customs except as a servant." Cyrene snapped back with agitation.

"I know mother...don’t you think it’s hard on me?" Ephiny asked as she looked up at Cyrene.

"I don’t know is it Ephiny?...what are your feelings on your amazon customs regarding boys... do you agree with them?"

"Yes...mother...I do believe in them. The customs are who I am."

"You mean to tell me you would want your own son to be a damn servant!" Cyrene asked with anger and a raised voice.

"Mother...please...no, that’s not what I’m saying. I do believe that we don’t need a man in our life but I would never want my son to be a servant. It’s very contradictory and I know that. Believe me it breaks my heart to know that my own son will not be able to join in my amazon traditions but I can’t just tell the other amazons that they have to accept that he will be an exception to the customs because he is my son."

"Ephiny...you need to tell Blaise all of this because it is going to upset her even worse if you don’t do it."

"I know mother and I will but I just can’t bring myself to break her heart right now. Please give me some more time to come up with another solution so, I don’t have to choose between being an amazon and my son before I tell Blaise. I should be the one to tell her." Ephiny answered sternly as she looked at Cyrene.

"Okay...you do what you think is right but just remember...Blaise has been lied to throughout her entire life." Cyrene answered with agitation as she stood up and walked away with Chayce.

"Mother!" Ephiny shouted as she walked after her... "I’m sorry...but please let me do this on my own terms." Ephiny asked searching for reassurance from Cyrene.

"I know you don’t want to hurt Blaise...but find a solution before it becomes more of a problem than it already is Ephiny."

"I will...thank you mother." Ephiny answered with a smile as she hugged her.

The pair walked back to the village and were intercepted by a warrior princess intent on seeing her niece and nephew... "there are my precious little niece and nephew!" she replied with a smile as she took Chayce from her mother.

"Xena...are you going soft?" Ephiny teased with a laugh.

"What can I say...I’m a sucker for adorable kids especially when they’re related to me." Xena answered with a smile as she held Chayce out in front of her and gently rocked him side to side as he smiled.

"Here...Ephiny...let me have Jordyn and you go spend some time with Blaise." Cyrene answered with a smile as she reached out for her granddaughter.

"Are you sure you both don’t mind?" Ephiny asked excitedly.

"No way...we don’t mind...besides, we’ll get Gabrielle to change their diapers." Xena answered with a laugh as her and Cyrene started to walk off.

"Thanks!" Ephiny answered with a smile as she headed into her hut to spend some time with her lover.

Ephiny entered the hut to find Blaise sprawled in her usual prone position with her head under the pillow. Ephiny chuckled as she sat on the bed next to Blaise and began to massage her muscular back. After a few minutes Blaise opened her eyes and glanced back at Ephiny with sleepy eyes.

"That feels good." she whispered and cleared her throat.

"I was worried that you were in the land of the dead because you were sleeping so soundly." Ephiny laughed as she kneaded her fingers into Blaise’s tight muscles.

"Well...those twins have worn me out baby." Blaise answered with a laugh... "where are they by the way?" Blaise asked as she looked around the room for the kids.

"Your sister...the warrior sucker for a cute baby face princess demanded that her and your mother take them so, we can have some time to spend together alone."

"Really?...I knew she wasn’t such a bad sister after all." Blaise answered with a laugh as she turned over on her back.

"Are you hungry?" Ephiny asked as she rubbed her hands along Blaise’s muscular abdomen.

"Only for you." Blaise answered with a sexy smile as she pulled Ephiny closer to her.

"Ooh, that sounds good." Ephiny answered seductively as she climbed up on Blaise and kissed her.

Blaise smiled as she looked into Ephiny’s hazel eyes and pushed her long, blond curls off her face... "I love you baby." Blaise answered as she pulled Ephiny down to her and traced Ephiny’s lips with her tongue before sliding it in her mouth for a long, moist kiss.

Ephiny broke her kiss and flashed a sexy smile as she placed soft bites along Blaise’s neck down to her muscular abdomen. Blaise felt an instant rush of warmth as she felt her wife’s lips and tongue pressed against her body. Ephiny’s soft nibbling traveled to Blaise’s navel and she placed wet kisses around her navel before dipping her tongue into her belly button.

"Ephiny!...I am so horny!...you’re driving me crazy!" Blaise moaned as Ephiny smiled and continued her exploration of Blaise’s body with her tongue.

Ephiny moved her tongue down to Blaise’s waistband on her boxer’s and slid her tongue under the band moving from left to right capturing her skin in her mouth for a kiss.

"You have made me so wet Eph!" Blaise exclaimed through her heavy breathing.

Ephiny moved her kiss back up Blaise’s body and hovered about Blaise with a smile as her blond curls draped over her shoulders... "how wet are you?" Ephiny purred as Blaise put her hands on Ephiny’s backside to pull her down on top of her.

"Find out for yourself." Blaise whispered as she stuck her tongue out with Ephiny wrapping her mouth around it and sucked Blaise’s tongue in her mouth.

Blaise squeezed Ephiny’s ass as Ephiny deepened their kiss... "I need you to touch me Ephiny." Blaise whispered through her kiss as a knock at the door came.

"By the gods!" Ephiny replied in disappointment as she gasped for her breath.

"Don’t answer it baby...I need you." Blaise whispered as her heart raced and her arousal mounted.

"I have to Blaise...it might be something to do with the kids."

"Damn!...you’re right we need to answer it." Blaise answered in disgust as she pulled Ephiny down for a kiss before she climbed out of the bed to see who was at the door.

Ephiny opened the door to find Joxer standing there and she knew the news was not going to be good.

"I’m sorry Ephiny but I need to speak to Blaise." Joxer replied with regret.

"It’s not your fault Joxer." Ephiny answered as she turned to Blaise... "honey...it’s Joxer."

Blaise knew by the look on her face that it was not a social visit and ran her fingers through her hair with frustration as she sat up and put her tunic on. Blaise reluctantly approached the door... "dude...you’re worse than the grim reaper. What’s up?" Blaise asked with agitation.

"You’re needed back in Troy. Paris is dead and they are being overwhelmed with no leader now."

"Damn it!...what about that idiot Drake?" Blaise answered as anger and disappointment overwhelmed her.

"He had the same fate as Paris." Joxer answered with regret.

"Son of a Bacchae!" Blaise shouted knowing she had to go and fulfill her obligation but it killed her to leave her family... "give me a little while to say goodbye." Blaise answered softly as Joxer nodded in acknowlegement and headed off to get Taz ready for the trip.

Blaise closed the door and leaned her head against it with regret as anger consumed her. Ephiny slid her arms around Blaise’s midsection for a hug and kissed her back before leaning her head against her. Blaise put her hands on Ephiny’s and turned around to hug her tightly.

"I love you Eph." Blaise whispered as she kissed Ephiny’s forehead and broke their hug. She grabbed her bag as she walked towards the bed and slammed it down in anger as she thought about how much easier it would be if she was the God of War and how she wouldn’t have to be away from her family for so long if she did assume the godhood. Blaise leaned on her hands that rested on the bed as the tears welled in her blue eyes at the thought of having to leave Ephiny and the newborn’s so soon.

Ephiny lovingly put her hand on Blaise’s back for comfort breaking her concentration... "I have to see the twins." Blaise replied as she rushed out of the hut to find her twins.

Ephiny gathered Blaise’s clothes and packed her bag as her tears of unhappiness stung her face. She thought it would get easier every time Blaise left but it only got harder. She enjoyed having Blaise home with her and didn’t want Blaise to go. Her hatred for Ares grew as he would shift all the responsibility to Blaise and he was not willing to help in any way... "what a jackass!" Ephiny exclaimed as she continued to pack Blaise’s bag.

Blaise knocked and entered to find Xena, Cyrene and Gabrielle happily playing with the twins... "Blaise...you’re quick!" Xena teased with a sly grin and a wink.

"Real funny." Blaise answered with disgust as she moved over to her children.

"What’s wrong Blaise?" Cyrene asked with concern.

"Duty calls mother." Blaise answered sternly as she picked Chayce up and then Jordyn... "I need to spend some time with them before I leave." Blaise answered with tears in her eyes and kept her head down not wanting to make eye contact with her family.

Xena looked at Gabrielle with a concerned look and back to Blaise as she watched her sister leave with the twins upset. Blaise cuddled the twins close to her as she headed back to her hut. She took in their scent and how they felt cuddled against her to commit it to memory as the tears streamed down her face. She wiped her tears away before entering the hut with the twins to not let Ephiny see how upset she really was.

Blaise laid the twins on the bed as she slipped on her black leather pants, then her vest and her scabbard with her sword sheathed which Ephiny reluctantly handed her. Blaise stared intently at the twins while she dressed and knelt before them after donning her boots. She held each one’s hand and placed soft kisses on each little hand as Ephiny stood behind her with her hand on Blaise’s shoulder for comfort.

"Don’t forget me while I’m gone." Blaise replied with a half smile as tears filled her eyes while Ephiny cried harder... "remember your mom loves you very much and I’ll miss you terribly." Blaise answered as she leaned up and kissed both of their foreheads before turning to Ephiny. She wiped Ephiny’s tears away as she gazed lovingly into her hazel eyes and leaned in for a soul searing kiss... "I love you." Blaise whispered through her kiss as Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise tightly.

"I love you too baby." Ephiny answered through her sobs.

Blaise looked into her tear stained face and kissed her softly... "don’t come out because I won’t be able to handle seeing you as I leave...I’m too upset right now and I definitely won’t be able to deal with it." Blaise answered as she engulfed her in a hug.

"I’ll see you soon then...I love you Blaise...always remember that." Ephiny answered as Blaise turned to leave.

"Always remember that I love you Eph." Blaise answered as she walked through the door wiping away her tears.

Blaise stormed towards her horse with fire and anger in her eyes as she mounted Taz. ‘I intend to make Ares pay for this one day.’ she thought to herself as her and Joxer rode off out of the village.

Blaise and Joxer rode the horses hard towards Troy as Blaise’s emotions where quite conflicted. She felt rage and anger for having to leave her family but ecstatic as she thought of her newborn’s. ‘The idiot Paris who started this damn war over a woman get’s himself killed!’ Blaise thought with anger as they approached the city, which was in total chaos.

 

"By the gods Joxer!" Blaise exclaimed as they rode towards the command hut.

 

"Tell me about it!" Joxer answered with disgust as they both dismounted.

 

"Sergeant! What in tartarus is going on?" Blaise shouted with anger as she entered the tent.

 

"We are out manned Blaise." the man answered with a salute to Blaise.

 

"Tell me something I don’t know jackass!" Blaise snapped as she approached the war table with the maps and heard chuckles from her other officers to her comment towards the sergeant. "You think that’s funny huh?" Blaise asked with anger as she turned her steely gaze towards the men.

 

"Aah...sorry." They answered as they knelt their heads down sheepishly.

 

"Maybe if you took this a little more serious we wouldn’t be losing this damn war!" She shouted as she looked at the map. "Where is the closest army that is loyal to my father?"

 

"Right here Blaise." The sergeant answered as he pointed to the map.

 

Blaise looked up at him with fiery blue eyes. "What are you waiting for? Get on it!" Blaise shouted as her officer scrambled out of the hut to bring in reinforcements.

 

"Lieutenant...I want to make sure we have men posted on every wall. Joxer...check the infirmary and get the walking wounded posted throughout the city. We need every one we can spare." Blaise replied as she fired off her orders.

 

Everyone scrambled out of the hut to fulfill their orders as Blaise followed them out to check on the troops already posted. The men were tired and weary but held their post proudly as she passed to check on everyone.

 

"Blaise...I have all the walls covered with men." The lieutenant replied breathless as he ran up.

 

"Good...you’re my new general." Blaise answered matter of factly.

 

"Excuse me?" The man asked confused.

 

"The idiot sergeant is incompetent and I need someone to take over for me here that I can trust. You remind me a lot of Calvin and I hope I’m not making a mistake by promoting you." Blaise answered as she stared the man down.

 

"No...you won’t be making a mistake, but why will you not be in charge here?" He asked confused as they walked through the city.

 

"I’m heading off to Athens for reinforcements."

 

"By the gods!...By the time you get there and back a moon will have passed."

 

"The largest army loyal to my father is there and it’s obvious Ares is not going to help so, I’ll have to go. The reinforcements should be here in two days and with their help you can hold them off until the larger army gets here." Blaise explained.

 

"Just the army? What about you?" The new general asked with confusion as to why Blaise didn’t include herself in those plans.

 

"I’m going to try and recruit some more men in that region to help us." Blaise informed him.

 

"When do you have to leave?"

 

"Shortly." Blaise answered sternly as she headed towards the command tent and fired off a letter to Ephiny.

 

"Blaise...I have the men from the infirmary posted as you asked." Joxer replied as he entered the hut and stood before Blaise.

 

"Perfect...take this scroll to Ephiny with the usual three dozen roses and purchase some stuffed animals for the twins please. Also, see to it that you deliver roses and a stuffed animal each week while I’m gone okay? You know where the stashed dinars are located in case you run out right?" Blaise asked as she stood up and handed him the scroll.

 

"Gone? Where are you going?" Joxer asked with concern.

 

"Athens."

 

"Blaise...I’m going with you." Joxer answered with worry.

 

"No...I need you to keep an eye out here and at my home. Ephiny will be more at ease if she sees you come at least once a week... okay?"

 

"Okay." Joxer answered reluctantly.

"Also, I want you to take a chest of dinars of mine and give it to Ephiny so they will be well provided for. You do know where I hid them right?"

 

"Yes...I know and I will do as you ask." Joxer answered as Blaise turned to leave. "Blaise...be careful okay?" Joxer answered with worry as he stuck his arm out.

 

Blaise smiled and clasped hands with him. "I will dude and you do the same okay? I’ve grown to like you too much for anything to happen to you!" Blaise answered with a chuckle as she exited the hut and headed off towards Taz.

 

Joxer watched Blaise ride off out of sight and had a bad feeling about Blaise’s latest mission.

 

Ephiny struggled to keep the twins from crying but had no luck as a knock came at the door. "Come in!" Ephiny yelled with frustration.

 

"Hi honey...how’s it going?" Cyrene asked as she peeked her head in the door.

 

"Horrible mother." Ephiny answered with agitation as she pushed her hair back out of her face. "I can’t seem to get the twins to stop crying. I am trying to get them changed and fed but it is so difficult." Ephiny answered as she held her long curls off her face while tears welled in her eyes from frustration.

 

Cyrene walked toward her. "That’s what grandma’s are for honey...to help mommie’s." Cyrene answered with a smile as she hugged Ephiny.

 

"Thank you so much mother." Ephiny answered relieved with a sigh. Ephiny picked up Jordyn to change her as Cyrene attended to Chayce.

 

After the children were changed and calmed down Ephiny sat on the bed to breast feed them. She watched her children lovingly and cried as she thought about how much she missed Blaise already.

 

"Ephiny...sweetheart what’s wrong?" Cyrene asked with concern as she sat next to her on the bed and pushed a stray hair off her face.

 

"I hate being apart from Blaise mother." Ephiny answered as the tears fell down her cheeks.

"I know you do darling but she’ll be back soon and we’ll all help you with the twins."

 

"I appreciate the help with the kids...it’s just that I worry so much about her and I miss her arms around me." Ephiny answered with sadness as she looked down at the kids.

 

"It will get easier honey and she’ll be back before you know it." Cyrene answered reassuringly.

 

"I hope so." Ephiny answered reluctantly not feeling totally confidant that Cyrene was right..

 

Cyrene helped Ephiny get the twins put down to sleep. "I’ll see you in the morning." Cyrene replied as she hugged Ephiny.

 

"Thanks so much mother." Ephiny answered as she kissed her on the cheek.

 

"Get some sleep honey." Cyrene answered with a smile as she ran her palm down Ephiny’s face before leaving the hut.

 

Ephiny leaned against the railing of the crib and watched Chayce sleep as tears welled in her eyes. She stroked his dark hair and thought about how much he looked like Blaise. She thought about how much she loves Blaise and misses her despite the fact she has only been gone for a short while. Ephiny didn’t have a good feeling about Blaise being gone which worried her because she had never felt that way before when Blaise was gone.

 

Ephiny changed into Blaise’s nightshirt and laid in bed. She cuddled up to Blaise’s pillow holding it tightly taking in the lingering sent of Blaise’s cologne still left on the pillow and cried herself to sleep wishing she was in Blaise’s arms.

 

Blaise rode until late in the evening and stopped to make camp not because she was tired but to give Taz the rest he needed. She figured if she kept busy and focused on her anger if would keep her mind off of being away from Ephiny and the twins. Her heart ached from the longing she had to be near her family. She didn’t know how she was going to get through this considering she had barely been away from them for a day and so needed to be near them.

 

Blaise took off Taz’s tack and proceeded to wash her stallion down to cool him off. Thoughts of the twins’ sweet little faces and how they felt cuddled up to her crept into her mind saddening her. She leaned her head against Taz’s neck as tear trickled down her cheek.

 

Taz loved his master and knew her heart ached. He leaned his head against her shoulder as his way of comfort. Blaise patted her trusty stallion... "Thanks buddy...I needed that." she replied as she moved around to face him and kissed his nose with a scratch to his neck.

 

Blaise smiled as Taz twisted his lips around against Blaise’s face for a kiss. "Okay...get some rest buddy." Blaise replied with a pat to his neck before retiring to her bedroll. She knew she wouldn’t be able to sleep but figured she would lay down and give her body a rest.

 

She opened her saddlebags and found Ephiny had packed one of her shirts. She smiled as she smelled Ephiny’s lingering scent on the material and imagined how sexy Ephiny looked in the shirt. Blaise looked through her pack to also find Ephiny packed shirts belonging to the twins. Blaise smiled as she fondly thought of her newborns as tears welled in her blue eyes and she laid back losing herself in her thoughts of her beautiful family wishing she could be with them.

 

Ephiny woke early the next morning to the cries of her two infants and lifted each one close to her chest for a loving hug. She kissed each one’s head softly to let them know how much her and their mother loved them as she sat in the rocking chair Blaise had made for when the baby would join their family. Ephiny opened her shirt and began to feed the children.

 

Cyrene knocked and entered as the children finished their meal. "How are you doing honey?" Cyrene asked as she leaned down and kissed Ephiny’s head.

 

"As good as can be expected mother." Ephiny answered as she handed Chayce to Cyrene to be burped as she worked on Jordyn.

 

Chayce let out a loud burp as Cyrene laughed and held him in front of her. "You are your mother’s son aren’t you?" She asked as she received a smile from Chayce.

 

"You can say that again." Ephiny answered with a chuckle as Jordyn let out a loud burp as well. "Uh-huh....we may have two of you who are like Blaise and may the gods help us!" Ephiny answered with a laugh as she kissed her daughter’s cheek.

 

"Now...you can definitely say that again!" Cyrene replied with a laugh.

 

Cyrene helped Ephiny bathe and clothe the children when a knock came at the door. Ephiny opened the door and was overwhelmed by the beautiful fragrance of red roses and she smiled excitedly as tears filled her eyes.

 

"Joxer...are you in there somewhere?" Ephiny asked with a laugh as the roses lowered and he flashed a goofy grin which no matter how much refinement he had gone through that silly grin of his was still present.

 

"Hi Ephiny...these are for you, of course." He answered as he brought the roses into the hut and put them on the table.

 

"They’re beautiful." Ephiny answered with a smile as she smelled the roses.

 

Joxer left the hut and returned with a bag full of stuffed animals. He took them to the children and pulled one out for each infant. "You’re mother said to make sure you two get these so, make sure you tell her I did my job okay?" Joxer asked with excitement as he laid one in each of their cribs. "Don’t forget there’s more where those came from for you both." He added with a laugh and was joined by Ephiny and Cyrene.

 

The twins grabbed their animals and cuddled up next to them. "I think they know they’re from Blaise." Cyrene answered with a smile as Joxer left the hut again.

 

"By the gods! What now?" Ephiny exclaimed with shock at all the gifts from Blaise as Joxer struggled to carry in the heavy chest and placed it on the table. "Joxer...what is this?" Ephiny asked confused as she approached him and looked at the chest.

 

"Blaise wanted to make sure you and the kids were well provided for in her absence Ephiny." Joxer answered as he opened the chest revealing an enormous amount of dinars.

 

 

"By the gods!" Ephiny exclaimed in shock. "She knows we don’t need all of this to be provided for Joxer."

 

"She was worried about you and the kids Ephiny." Joxer answered as he handed her the scroll Blaise scribed before she left. "I have to get back so, I’ll see you soon." Joxer replied as he turned to leave but was stopped as Ephiny grabbed his hand.

 

"Thank you very much Joxer...I appreciate you bringing this here for us."

 

"Don’t thank me Ephiny. I enjoy doing it. See you soon." Joxer answered with a smile as he hurried out of the hut.

 

"Mother...can you believe this?" Ephiny asked in shock and a bit overwhelmed by the amount of dinars in the chest as she sat down.

 

"Yes...I can, honey. Blaise loves and cares for both you and the children very much."

 

"She is so incredibly thoughtful." Ephiny answered as tears streamed down her face as she opened the scroll and began to read.

 

Eph,

 

My love! I miss your sweet, loving face already. As many times as I have been away from you I miss you more every time and I have never gotten used to being away from you. I miss seeing those two beautiful, sweet faces of our children and long for the day I return and can hold all three of you in my arms again. Thank you for blessing me with such beautiful children and for being such a wonderful wife. I’m the luckiest woman in the world. You will never know how much it means to me that you created our children. I love you so much Eph...please...always remember that."

 

Ephiny’s eyes became red as the tears streamed down her face. Cyrene approached and lovingly stroked her hair to comfort her as Ephiny continued to read the scroll.

 

I absolutely love and adore our children with all my heart as I also do with you. I can’t imagine my life without you and the twins being apart of it. My life would be without love or meaning without the three of you in my heart. Please give Jordyn and Chayce hugs, kisses and make sure you tell them everyday how much I love and adore them. I long for the moment I see your beautiful face and can hold you in my arms to feel your heartbeat close to mine.

 

I love you baby,

Blaise

 

 

Ephiny closed the scroll and cried harder as she thought about how much she loved Blaise. She couldn’t have ever imagined a mate for herself as wonderful, caring and loving as Blaise is with her. Ephiny walked over to the crib and gazed lovingly at her beautiful children that were produced from the love of both her and Blaise. She realized they would not have been possible without Blaise in her life.

 

Cyrene put her hands on Ephiny’s shoulders for support and Ephiny turned engulfing her in a hug. "I’m sorry you’re so upset sweetie." Cyrene whispered as she held Ephiny tight to comfort her.

 

"Thanks for being here for me...mother. It really means a lot to me." Ephiny answered as she looked into Cyrene’s familiar blue eyes.

 

Cyrene wiped Ephiny’s tears away. "Honey, go out and get some fresh air or do some amazon things to get away for awhile. I’ll watch the twins." Cyrene offered.

 

Ephiny chuckled at Cyrene’s statement about doing amazon things. "Thanks...I would appreciate it." Ephiny answered as she wiped the remaining tears away and headed out the door.

 

Blaise had been on the road and away from her family for over three moons trying to recruit new armies to pledge allegiance to her father and help during the war. She was tired of trying to persuade people to join in the fight and wanted to see her family whom she missed desperately. They were not out of her thoughts for a moment and being away from them made her more agitated when she had to deal with stubborn people.

 

Blaise wanted to be with her family and her only contact was through messages sent by a messenger to Joxer, which were then passed on to Ephiny. The messages seemed to take forever to return to her and she had had enough of the separation and started to head home. "Let’s go home Tazmeister." She affectionately called her trusty stallion as he whinnied a response of good idea as he galloped faster.

 

They rode for over a candle mark until they came to a fork in the road and Taz began to prance nervously. "What’s wrong buddy?" Blaise asked confused as to why her stallion acted the way he did. Taz whinnied and reared up on his hind legs repeatedly with agitation as Blaise held his reins trying to control him. "Taz...what are you doing?" Blaise asked with agitation as Taz lowered himself to the ground and swung around in a circle. Blaise leaned forward just as Taz swung his head back knocking it into Blaise’s sending her to the ground unconscious.

 

"Are you sure this is the one?" The man asked his leader as they looked over a very unconscious Blaise.

 

"This is the one...she’s going to be very happy." The leader answered as they shackled Blaise’s wrists and ankles.

 

"What about the horse?"

 

"Leave him...he’ll just run off once the effects of the dart wears off. I can’t imagine him causing any trouble." The leader instructed the man as they threw Blaise’s body over a free horse and headed away from the area.

 

The group entered the village and headed straight for the prison. They were met by the woman who had issued the order to have Blaise captured. She walked up to the horse which carried Blaise and grabbed her by her hair to lift her head up to see if it was who she wanted. Once satisfied it was Blaise she ordered the men to take Blaise into the cell she had prepared for her.

 

"Did you kill her horse like I told you too?" She asked the leader of the group.

 

"No...that horse won’t be a problem." He answered surely.

 

"You idiot!...I told you to kill the horse! You should not have underestimated her horse. He is very capable of causing a huge problem. Now, go back and finish the job!" She ordered with agitation at the incompetence of the men.

 

"Yes...ma’am." The man answered as he headed out of the village.

 

The woman entered the cell where Blaise laid unconscious and looked over her. "You’re back were you belong Blaise." She whispered in her ear as she brushed Blaise’s hair off her face. "Let me know when she wakes...understood?" The woman ordered as she exited the cell.

 

"As you wish ma’am." The guard answered with a nod as he closed and locked the cell.

 

"Where in tartarus did that horse go?" The leader asked nervously as they surveyed the area for Taz.

 

"How should I know?" The man answered confused.

 

"Search the area and see if you can find him." He ordered.

 

The men searched for over an hour and found no site of Taz and decided to head back to the village. The men were promptly beheaded by Magdeline for their incompetence.

 

Blaise woke with a killer headache and sat up on the very uncomfortable cot she laid on. She swung her legs over the edge and looked around at her surroundings confused as to how she had gotten there. She tried to break free of the shackles with no such luck and figured they were made by her uncle Hephastus if she was unable to break them. She made a mental note to talk with him about who he let his unbreakable metal get out to.

 

Her head pounded and she rested it in her hands with her elbows leaning against her legs. She heard the cell door open and looked up to see two guards grab her and throw her against the wall. "Aah...take it easy pal. I’ve got a vicious headache!" She replied with agitation as she looked at the two gaurds.

 

"Aah...poor baby has a headache!" The woman answered as she drew near to Blaise.

 

Blaise recognized the voice and looked at her with disgust. "Magdeline...I should have known I’d have to see you again one day." Blaise answered with agitation and disgust as she looked at the shorter woman standing before her.

 

"Hello...my love." Magdeline replied sarcastically. "Did you miss me?" She asked as she ran her finger down Blaise’s chest.

 

"Not in the least bit." Blaise answered nonchalantly as she received a swift punch to the ribs from the gaurds. "Aah..." Blaise winced in pain from the blow. "You two think you’re real men hitting a chained up person huh? Unchain me and make it a fair fight." Blaise replied in anger receiving another blow to the same tender area.

 

"Ooh, I so love it when you’re feisty Blaise." Magdeline replied with a devious smile on her face as Blaise raised her head back up to face Magdeline. The woman moved in close to Blaise and looked into her angered blue eyes. "I know you missed me Blaise." She answered as she kissed Blaise seeking entry with her tongue which Blaise would not allow which angered her and she bit Blaise’s lip drawing blood.

 

"You bitch!" Blaise yelled as she spit the blood out of her mouth on the woman’s clothing.

 

Magdeline slapped Blaise across the face and stripped her half heart necklace off her neck as Blaise moved towards her but was thrust back hard against the wall by the gaurds.

 

"Oh, isn’t this sweet." She replied sarcastically as she looked at the necklace.

 

"That doesn’t belong to you. Give it back."

 

"Is this your pathetic wife’s heart?" She asked with a devious look.

 

"She’s not pathetic like you...now, hand it over." Blaise answered with agitation and mounting anger.

 

"Just what do you think you’ll do if I don’t?"

 

"I’ll kill you." Blaise answered sternly as she looked the woman in the eye.

 

"I don’t think you’ll do that Blaise because you still love me. I can see it in your eyes."

 

"You’re seeing the love for my wife in those eyes... not for your pathetic self. I hate you!" Blaise answered with disgust.

 

"Oh, isn’t that sweet that you love your wife. You won’t be seeing her anymore and you’ll grow to love me once again. If not... so be it. I get to punish you like you did to me when you walked out of my life."

 

"That’s what this is all about?" Blaise shouted with anger.

 

"It’s about payback Blaise and I intend to pay you back royally just like you deserve. I think I’ll take that ring and wear it as my own." She answered as she took the joining ring off Blaise’s finger which Ephiny had given her.

 

Blaise tried to break free but was unable and swept Magdeline’s feet out from beneath her as she pushed the guards away from her. Blaise leaned down to grab the ring back and received a blow to her back sending her to all fours in pain.

 

"By the gods!" Blaise exclaimed as the guards stood her up. Magdeline stood up and slipped the ring on her finger much to Blaise’s protest. "No!" Blaise shouted in anger as she watched the woman laugh.

 

"Show her what happens when people disrespect me!" She ordered as she exited the jail.

 

The guards attached Blaise’s shackles to the wall and beat her to unconsciousness as Blaise lost herself in her thoughts of Ephiny and the children to drown out the pain she felt.

 

"Ephiny!" Blaise whispered as darkness consumed her.

 

"Ephiny...what is it?" Gabrielle asked her regent who yelled out all of a sudden.

 

Ephiny looked at her with disbelief. "I had this terrible pain and feeling Gabrielle. I think something is wrong with Blaise." She answered with concern.

 

"What? How do you know that?" Gabrielle asked with confusion.

 

 

"I just do and I heard her call my name. I felt her pain. Oh, by the gods Blaise where are you?" Ephiny answered with worry as she paced around the hut.

 

"She’ll be fine Ephiny. It’s just that you’re worried about her and you haven’t heard from her for sometime now. Try not to worry...she’s fine." Gabrielle answered reassuringly.

"I hope so Gabrielle because I really don’t have a very good feeling right now." Ephiny answered unsure of the feelings she was having and headed back to her hut to check on the twins who were taking their afternoon nap.

 

Ephiny stroked each baby’s head and thought of Blaise. She wondered where she could be and why she hadn’t been home by now. Ephiny couldn’t believe she would stay away for so long and knew in her heart Blaise was in danger. "Oh, Blaise...I love you." Ephiny whispered as she lovingly looked at her children that her and Blaise produced out of their love for one another.

 

"I’ll be right back. I need to go speak with Xena." Ephiny informed her nanny as she left the hut and found Xena at the training area. "Xena! I need to talk to you please." Ephiny replied with urgency as she approached Xena and stood between her and the other amazon grabbing the swinging staff to stop the amazon’s training session. "Go away and train harder. I should not have been able to have so easily stopped you." Ephiny answered with agitation as she glanced over her shoulder.

 

"Yes...as you order my regent." The amazon answered with a slight bow as she walked away with embarrassment.

 

"What’s going on Ephiny?" Xena asked with confusion.

 

"I think something’s wrong with Blaise, Xena."

 

"Ephiny...Blaise can take care of herself...you know that." Xena answered as she looked down and brushed the dirt off her leathers.

 

"I don’t think she can this time Xena." Ephiny answered with worry.

 

Xena looked up and saw the concern and fear in Ephiny’s eyes which she had never seen before. "What makes you think that Ephiny?" She asked with worry.

"I don’t know how but I heard Blaise yell out for me and I felt her pain...physically." Ephiny tried to explain knowing Xena must think she had lost her mind. "I know you think I’m crazy but I’m telling you Xena... I felt her pain and heard her."

 

"Not at all Ephiny. I can feel and hear the same with Gabrielle. I don’t think Aphrodite would allow her to be harmed Ephiny. Maybe you just thought something happened because you haven’t heard anything from her for awhile." Xena answered trying to reassure Ephiny but she knew it wasn’t working.

 

"Xena...I’ve never felt this way before and I just know something’s wrong." Ephiny answered with agitation.

 

"Okay...if we haven’t heard anything soon from her and if you have the same thing happen then I’ll go check things out to see if I can find Blaise." Xena answered with a pat on the back.

 

"Why does it have to be you that goes after her Xena? Are you of the same narrow mind set that your sister is that I’m not capable of taking care of myself and my wife?" Ephiny shouted in anger as she walked away.

 

"Ephiny!...that’s not what I meant!" Xena shouted as she walked after Ephiny and stopped her.

 

"What did you mean Xena?" Ephiny asked with agitation as she shrugged Xena’s hand off her shoulder.

 

"What I meant was that I’ll go after Blaise because you have the twins to think about Ephiny. You know I respect you as an amazon so, I don’t know why you would imply what you just did."

 

"I’m sorry Xena. I’m just a little agitated right now and I think you can understand why." Ephiny answered with regret for what she had said to Xena.

 

"I understand Ephiny...now, try to think positive about Blaise. You know she always comes out smelling like a rose in sticky situations. Right?" Xena asked with a laugh as she hugged Ephiny for reassurance.

 

"Yeah...I guess you’re right...thanks." Ephiny answered appreciatively as she headed back to her hut to tend to the twins.

 

"Let’s hope I’m right this time." Xena whispered under her breath as she watched Ephiny head out of site. "What’s going on little sister?" Xena whispered with worry.

 

Blaise spent the next few days sleeping off the beating she had taken and decided she needed to keep her strength up. She did sit ups, push ups and chins ups the best she could fighting off the pain associated with every movement she did with her exercise to regain her strength. She hadn’t seen anyone for days except when they delivered her bread and water for a meal.

 

Her motivation to stay strong was her thoughts of getting back to Ephiny, the twins and her family. Her nights and dreams were filled with all of them. Her dreams felt so real as if Ephiny was in her arms and she could smell her sweet perfume. She could feel her lips on her own as Ephiny kissed her in the dreams and she could feel Ephiny’s love for her.

 

She imagined what the twins would look like now. They would be bigger than they were when she left which angered her because she was missing out on her children’s life much the same as her father did when she was a child. She remembered how soft they felt and how soft their breath was against her neck when they slept close to her. She knew they were beautiful just as Ephiny is to her.

 

Blaise hoped her mother and Tarus were doing well and figured her mother had probably returned to Amphibolis by now. She wondered how Xena was holding up during Gabby’s pregnancy and wondered if she was going through the same torture Ephiny put her through which made her laugh but then it made her sad. She would trade that any day just so she could be near Ephiny again. Blaise’s angry thoughts took over as she paced the cell in her shackles.

 

"Aphrodite!, Cupid!, Zeus!, Ares!" Blaise shouted as she looked up hoping one of them would show up and help her. She had requested their presence before with no luck and wondered if her family had abandoned her altogether. She would believe that from Ares but not Aphie or Cupid.

 

 

"Don’t bother calling your family Blaise...they can’t help you." Magdeline replied as she approached the cell.

 

"What makes you so sure of that?" Blaise asked as she turned around to face her with anger in her blue eyes at the site of the woman.

 

"Well...my partner...your father...has trapped them. Unfortunately, he has lost his powers for the time being. So, I get to do with you what I want and you know what I want." She replied seductively which repulsed Blaise.

 

"I should have known you worked for my father but why would he want me here?" Blaise asked confused as she paced the cell trying to think of what her father could possibly be up too as the guards entered the cell and chained her to the wall with Blaise putting up a struggle.

 

"Well...my dear...seems daddy thinks you’re dispensable now that you have produced a son and he intends to take him for his next heir."

 

"No!" Blaise shouted with anger as she struggled to free herself from the chains to no avail.

 

"Blaise...my darling." Magdeline replied sarcastically as she ran her finger down Blaise’s face which repulsed Blaise and she turned her head away. Magdeline grabbed her chin and held her face in front of her own. "You should know better than to try and get out of those chains made by Hephastus. You know that you can’t break free from them even if you are half god."

 

"Magdeline...you said you loved me right?"

 

"Oh, very much so Blaise." She answered with a smile.

 

"Then how can you do this to me and to my child?"

 

"I told you...it’s payback Blaise. You should have never walked out on me like you did and besides we should have had a son instead of you and that amazon bitch." She answered with anger as Blaise struggled in the chains.

 

"First off, you bedded my father so, in my book you walked out on me. You greedy bitch! The only reason you wanted me was for my riches and to get closer to my father but you couldn’t stand it when he only wanted you for sex for the one night now could you? No, you couldn’t and that’s why you came back to me. Did you really expect me to take you back?" Blaise asked with a raised angry voice.

 

"Shut up Blaise and just be thankful I have given you the opportunity to live a life with me instead of being dead like your father wanted." She snapped back at Blaise with agitation.

 

"A life with you will never happen and you need to get that through your head. I’d rather give up forever than to ever be with you again." Blaise shouted.

 

"Watch what you ask for... it could be arranged!"

 

"Do it Magdeline! Put me out of my misery of having to see your ugly face!" Blaise shouted in anger.

 

She grabbed Blaise by the throat in anger. "That would be too easy for you. I want you to suffer for a little while longer." She answered as she let go of Blaise’s throat and slapped Blaise across the face.

 

"Remind me to kill you the first chance I get for the way you have slandered my wife and for wearing those things that are precious to me that you have no right to wear." Blaise answered with anger and a sly grin on her face.

 

"That will never happen except in your dreams Blaise." She answered as she left the cell.

 

"If that gets you through the day then keep believing it but that dream will become a reality Magdeline!" Blaise shouted as she watched her walk out of site and received another beating at the hands of the guards.

 

Blaise laid semiconscious and heard noises from outside her window and struggled to open her eyes. She shook off the blurred vision and stood on the cot to look out of the window. She saw Taz outside the window pacing back and forth. "Taz...my friend...where have you been?" Blaise whispered as her trusty stallion came closer to the window and snorted his reply to her. "Like I knew that you were shot with a dart and you couldn’t find me? Did you forget that you knocked me out?" Blaise whispered sarcastically as Taz snorted again. "Okay...okay...keep it down and I’ll stop arguing with you. Just go find Xena for me and hurry. I don’t have much time to stop Ares. Go my friend! Hurry!" Blaise ordered as she watched her stallion gallop at full speed out of site.

 

Taz traveled night and day to get back to the amazon village quickly. Xena had returned to their hut with the food request Gabrielle had asked for from the food hut. "Gabrielle...are you really going to dip the eel in the cream?" Xena asked with a disgusted look on her face.

 

"Can I help it if you’re child wants that to eat?" Gabrielle asked with agitation as she took the said food choice from Xena and began to devour it.

 

"Are you sure it’s my child? Because there is no way I would eat something so gross!" Xena teased.

 

"Who’s child do you think it is Xena?" Gabrielle snapped with anger as she gave her a dirty look.

 

‘Oh, geez...I’m breaking every rule there is with a pregnant woman. How in tartarus do I get out of this one?’ Xena thought to herself. "Gabrielle... honey...I was only kidding with you." Xena answered trying to sweet talk Gabrielle.

 

"Don’t pull that crap with me Warrior Princess! I want to know why you questioned as to wether this was your child or not!" Gabrielle asked obviously agitated.

 

Xena heard a banging on the door. "We’re busy right now!" Xena yelled over her shoulder and looked back at Gabrielle and moved to the bed. "Babe...I was only kidding when I asked you that. You should know that by now I was just teasing you." Xena explained as the banging on the door agitated Xena as it grew louder and more incessantly. "What in tartarus is going on out there?" Xena asked with agitation as she moved to the door.

 

She opened the door and found a very sweaty and agitated stallion standing before her which startled her. "Taz...where’s you’re owner?" She asked as she looked around for Blaise. "Is she playing some trick on me?" Xena asked as she continued to look around.

Taz whinnied and reared up on his back legs repeatedly as he nudged Xena out of the hut. "Taz...what is going on?" Xena asked confused as she took his reigns. "I don’t know what you and Blaise are up to but I’ll get you both back if it’s some kind of a trick!" Xena replied with agitation as she attempted to pull him by the reigns to Ephiny and Blaise’s hut to see if Blaise was there.

 

Taz held his ground and reared up and down causing a commotion as Xena tried to steady him. Ephiny rushed out of the hut to find out what was going on and saw that it was Taz before Xena.

 

"Where’s Blaise?" she asked with excitement that Blaise had returned.

 

"I thought she was with you Ephiny and that her and Taz were playing a trick on me." Xena explained as she struggled to steady the agitated horse.

 

Taz backed away from Xena as she held the reigns to try and steady him. "Easy boy...what’s wrong with you?" Xena asked as she moved closer to him. "He’s acting very strange Ephiny. He almost tore my door down trying to get in there."

 

"Is he hurt?" Ephiny asked with worry as she approached him and ran her hand down his neck to search for any wounds. "What’s up boy? Where’s Blaise?" Ephiny asked as she examined him. "He’s not hurt Xena." Ephiny answered as Taz nudged Xena and bowed next to her so, she could mount him.

"What in tartarus?" Xena asked confused as she looked at Ephiny. "Wait a minute. Did Blaise send you?" Xena asked as Taz nodded his head up and down. "I totally forgot that Blaise told me she trained Taz to come to me if she was ever in danger." Xena answered as she looked at Ephiny with worry.

 

"I’m going with you to find Blaise Xena." Ephiny demanded as she approached Xena.

 

"No, I’m going by myself." Xena answered adamantly as she led Taz towards the water trough for a drink.

 

"Don’t do this to me Xena!" Ephiny shouted with anger.

 

"Ephiny...the twins are still nursing! You can’t leave them!" Xena shouted back.

 

"I can’t take this being useless!" Ephiny shouted in anger as Gabrielle exited the hut to find out what was going on.

 

"Ephiny...you’re not useless. You have two children to take care of who need you desperately." Xena answered calmly as she stared into Ephiny’s hazel eyes.

 

"Blaise needs me too Xena." Ephiny answered defiantly.

 

"Yes...she does, but you’re children need you more and you know Blaise would want you to protect your children at all cost Ephiny."

 

"She’s right Ephiny." Gabrielle answered hoping to calm her regent down.

 

"Oh, Gabrielle what would you know?" Ephiny asked with anger as she stormed off to her hut.

 

"Ephiny!" Gabrielle shouted as she watched her regent disappear.

 

"Let her settle down Gabrielle. I have to go to Blaise she’s in danger. Will you be okay without me?" Xena asked with worry as she took Gabrielle in her arms and looked down into her green eyes.

 

"I’ll be fine here Xena, just bring Blaise back in one piece okay?" Gabrielle answered reassuring Xena that she’d be well taken care of in the village.

 

"Okay...I’ll be back soon. Keep an eye out on the other pregnant lady in the family for me please?" Xena asked as she gathered her weapons and gear for the journey.

 

"I may not be Argo’s favorite person in the world but I will keep an eye out for her Xena... you know that." Gabrielle answered with a smile. "Be careful please?" Gabrielle asked with worry as she looked lovingly into Xena’s blue eyes.

 

"I’ll be careful just for you babe. I love you." Xena whispered as she kissed her bard passionately. "Goodbye." Xena whispered as she mounted Taz and looked down at her bride flashing a smile and a wink hoping she wasn’t too late to help her little sister.

 

 

"I love you Xena." Gabrielle answered with a smile as she watched her warrior ride out of the village and headed over to talk with Ephiny.

 

Gabrielle slipped into Ephiny’s hut after knocking with no acknowledgment from Ephiny to enter. Ephiny turned to see Gabrielle standing in the doorway. "What do you want Gabrielle?" Ephiny asked tersely.

 

"To see if you’re okay Ephiny." Gabrielle answered as she moved closer to her regent.

 

"Isn’t that noble of you to see how I’m doing." Ephiny answered sarcastically as she turned around and crossed her arms over her chest. "Do you think I’m okay Gabrielle considering my wife is in danger, possibly dead and I can’t do a damn thing about it?" Ephiny asked in anger.

 

"Ephiny...Xena will find Blaise and bring her back. You know that." Gabrielle answered trying to reassure her regent.

 

"It’s not Xena’s job to do that Gabrielle. Blaise is my wife, my love, my responsibility...not Xena’s."

 

"She is Xena’s sister which also makes her Xena’s responsibility Ephiny. Why are you being so hard on yourself?"

"How would it make you feel to have to wait and rely on someone else to bring your wife home when they’re in danger? Huh?" Ephiny asked sternly as she put her hands on her hips.

 

"It would bother me...I suppose." Gabrielle conceded.

 

"Look Gabrielle...you know me I’m not the type of woman to stand around and wait. I’m a woman of action and this is driving me crazy to not be able to go and save my wife! I feel as though I’ve lost my independence and I’m useless."

 

"Ephiny...how can you say you’re useless?"

 

"I stand around here waiting for my lover to return and taking care of our children. I take a backseat to you in this amazon village and I feel like I’ve lost all that I once stood for Gabrielle."

 

"Are you telling me you no longer want to be a mother to your children and that you want to go back to the amazon you once were before you met Blaise?"

 

"I’m not sure Gabrielle but I can tell you I don’t like to be put in this helpless situation and that has to change." Ephiny answered with agitation as she stormed out of the hut leaving a bewildered Gabrielle and the twins with the nanny.

 

Xena wasn’t sure were Taz was taking her but she knew he meant business by the way he refused to stop to rest. She finally reasoned with the stallion to stop and let her take a much needed rest.

"We’ll get there boy...take it easy." Xena replied as she scratched his neck and led him to the river for some water.

Once hydrated the pair headed off in the direction Taz knew Blaise would be found. Xena knew Argo was dutiful but Taz was different and she wondered wether Argo would do the same for her. She was sure of it but was still amazed at how adamant Taz was to get to Blaise.

"Ephiny...the twins need you." Gabrielle replied softly as she approached her regent who stood looking out over the lake.

She gave Gabrielle a glaring glance over her shoulder then looked back out over the lake. "At least someone does huh?" She answered sarcastically.

"Ephiny...there are plenty of people who need you like me, the amazons, the twins, and Blaise." Gabrielle answered as she put her hand on her Regent’s shoulder for comfort.

"I guess I’m being stupid huh?" Ephiny asked as she looked at her Queen.

"Not really...it would be hard for me to have to wait for someone else to go off and help Xena. I can understand where you’re coming from with that, but what I’m concerned with Ephiny is it sounds like you don’t want the life you have with Blaise now." Gabrielle answered with concern.

"That’s not it Gabrielle. I know it sounded that way but it’s just that I’m so frustrated!" Ephiny answered with agitation. "I want to be there for Blaise when she needs me but something always comes up and I can’t be there."

"Don’t you think you’re there for Blaise right now?"

"No I don’t." Ephiny answered with regret.

"Ephiny...you don’t have to be right by her side to be there for her. Think about it...you’re here with the children. Don’t you think that Blaise would think you are there for her by protecting and nurturing your children? That’s something she can’t do right now and because you’re here, you are doing what she can't for them. Just by her knowing that you love her and you have a family with her is being there for her."

Ephiny looked up from the ground and looked at Gabrielle with shame. "I never thought of it that way before Gabrielle. You know me. I’m a badass Amazon and I want to get right into the thick of things!" Ephiny answered with a slight smile.

"Oh, I know all too well what kind of an Amazon you are Ephiny. But your priorities have changed and you have a family that you love very much and you don’t have to be that badass Amazon all the time now." Gabrielle answered with a chuckle. "Unless that’s what you truly want...to go back to the way you were before Blaise entered your life...lonely and devoting your life to the Amazons instead of sharing your life with someone you love. Is that what you want?"

"No...I realized that I really wasn’t living until I met Blaise and my life had all new meaning. I love being an Amazon and everything that goes along with it, but I love Blaise very much and I wouldn’t want to live without her. I just need to get back to doing some of my duties along with being a new mother and a wife. Somehow work them all into my life."

"Well...talk to Blaise when she gets back. Maybe the two of you can work something out so that both of you can continue your duties and have your life together. By the way, have you told Blaise about Chayce yet?"

Ephiny bowed her head and shook it no. "I know what you’re going to say Gabrielle but please let me do it at my own time."

"Ephiny...the longer you wait the worse it’s going to be for Blaise. You should have told her long ago." Gabrielle answered with agitation.

"I know...I guess I was hoping we would have a little girl so it would be a non-issue. Then when we had Chayce I couldn’t bear to break Blaise’s heart by telling her that our son won’t be welcomed into his own mother’s village or her custom’s." Ephiny answered with regret.

"Ephiny...there never really is a good time for things like that, but you really need to talk to her about it before someone else does. You know she’ll be devastated if you don’t do it." Gabrielle answered with concern as she turned to head back to the village.

"I know." Ephiny whispered as she looked back out at the lake. ‘Blaise is going to be so hurt and disappointed when she finds out about Chayce. I can’t bear to break her heart that way but she does need to be told... by me.’ Ephiny thought to herself as she headed back to the village.

Xena wondered if her and Taz were ever going to get to where Blaise was located. After traveling for three days she wondered if Taz really knew where he was going. Xena and Taz reached the outskirts of the village just after sundown and the stallion came to a halt. He knelt down indicating to Xena she was to dismount which she obliged.

"Okay...which way boy?" Xena asked as she scanned the area noting the village was not heavily guarded.

Taz led her toward the prison through the cover of the trees and stopped. "Here?" Xena asked as Taz nodded his head up and down in agreement. "It’s a good thing you and Argo are well trained or we would have one serious problem." Xena replied with a chuckle. "Okay....go get one of your buddies for our escape." Xena instructed the faithful stallion who began to walk off to follow his orders. "Make sure it’s a fast one." Xena replied as Taz stopped and looked back at her obviously displeased with her comment.

"Sorry...had to make sure." Xena answered as she put her hands up. ‘Geez, I get grief from humans and now a friggin horse!’ Xena thought to herself as she watched Taz walk off.

‘Friggin humans! Do they really think we are that stupid? I’ll have to remember to get her back for that one!’ Taz thought to himself as he walked towards the corral.

Xena scoped out the area for the best and least noticeable place for her to make her entrance. ‘I don’t like how it’s so quiet.’ Xena thought to herself as she slipped through the brush and headed towards the small prison.

Blaise slipped in and out of consciousness from the latest beating. She had refused Magdeline’s advances once again and received a hearty beating for it. She would rather die than succumb to that and if she wasn’t chained to the wall she would kill her herself to spare anymore of that torture. She thought and told herself she couldn’t do that to Ephiny and the children. They were the only reason she held on for this long and why she hadn't given up a long time ago.

Blaise hoped that Ares had not regained his powers and that the children and Ephiny were safe. She hoped Xena would find her before he did get his powers back so they could stop him.

"Psst...hey! Blaise!" Xena whispered as she peered through the window.

Blaise thought she was hearing things and looked up to see her sister’s face in the window. She was so glad to see her there. "Xena!" Blaise answered in a whisper with a huge smile.

"Hey, what’s a good looking chick like you doing in a place like this?" Xena teased noting her sister didn’t look good. She was glad she arrived when she did.

"Get me out of here." Blaise answered groggily.

"I will...can you distract the guards and get them out of your cell area so, I can come through the roof?" Xena asked in a whisper as she noticed the two guards were engaged in a candid conversation and paid no attention to Blaise.

Blaise nodded yes and looked up at the guards. "Guards!...tell Magdeline I’m ready to accept her offer." Blaise shouted as the guards looked up at her with surprise.

"I’ll tell her." One guard offered as he opened the door and three other guards stepped into the area.

After a few minutes Magdeline entered with a smile on her face. "Open the cell." She ordered as the guard obliged and she entered the cell. "Is it true Blaise?" She asked with excitement.

"Yes...it is. I’ve finally realized that you’re the only person for me. I am going to take my father’s godhood and make you my queen of desire." Blaise answered straining to smile and to keep from throwing up from what she was having to say.

Magdeline was ecstatic and approached Blaise. "I’m so happy Blaise. We are meant to be together." She answered as she wiped the blood off of Blaise’s face. Her touch burned Blaise’s face and she became very disgusted by her touch. She wanted nothing more than to kill the woman standing before her.

"Me too." Blaise reluctantly answered to keep up the charade to give Xena the time she needed to get inside. Blaise strained a smile as Magdeline kissed her sending a wave of nausea throughout her. She broke the kiss and whispered in her ear. "Have the guards leave us and unchain me so I can hold you in my arms."

Magdeline instantly turned to the guards with excitement. "Give me the key and leave us!" She ordered as the guard handed her the key.

The guards did as they were ordered and exited the cell area to the opposite room. Magdeline unlocked one shackle and then the other.

"I knew you would come around one of these days Blaise." She purred seductively as Blaise rubbed her bruised and sore wrists from the shackles being so tight. Xena slipped down from the roof unnoticed and Blaise moved in behind Magdeline so she wouldn’t see her approach.

Blaise wrapped her arms around the woman who pressed her back up against Blaise. "Oh, Blaise that feels so good." Magdeline moaned as Xena slipped into the area where the guards were posted.

"I’ve wanted to do this for so long Magdeline." Blaise whispered with an ominous look on her face unknown by Magdeline as her hands moved up to the woman’s face. Blaise covered her mouth with her hand as Magdeline struggled to break free to no avail. "I told you to not speak badly of my wife. You had no right to do that Magdeline or to wear anything that she gave me. I promised I would do this and you know I keep my promises Magdeline." Blaise whispered in a demonic tone as she snapped the woman’s neck and watched her crumble to the ground dead.

Blaise knelt down and took what belonged to her off of the dead woman including her boot dagger Ephiny had given her as a joining gift, her sword and most importantly her jewelry from Ephiny.

"Blaise! What are you doing? Let’s go! I got rid of the guards and I’d like to get out of here before we’re noticed." Xena replied anxiously as she entered the cell.

"I’m getting what belongs to me Xena." Blaise answered as she grabbed the remainder of her belongings from the dead woman.

"What happened to her?" Xena asked as she looked down at the woman then back to Blaise.

"I snapped her neck." Blaise answered coldly as Xena saw no remorse in her blue eyes only darkness as Blaise looked at her sister when she exited the cell. Blaise and Xena centered themselves underneath the opening in the roof. "I’ll need help Xena I’m too weak to make the jump up myself." Blaise replied as she checked out the height of the roof and knew she wouldn’t be able to make the jump.

"Okay...here. Step into my hand and I’ll give you a boost up as you jump." Xena instructed Blaise as she glanced around to make sure no other guards entered the area. Xena locked her hands together as Blaise stepped up and steadied herself before Xena pushed her up through the roof.

Xena jumped up and grabbed the hole in the roof and pulled herself up to join Blaise on the roof. Xena tossed her whip on a tree branch securing it to allow Blaise to swing off the roof to the ground easier. Once Blaise was safely off the roof and on the ground Xena flipped off the roof to join her sister and make their escape.

Xena led Blaise to where the horses were waiting for them and they mounted the horses to make their escape. "Way to go boy...good job!" Blaise praised Taz as she took his reigns and they rode off out of the village in a hurry. "Xena...how’s Ephiny and the children?" Blaise asked with concern as she steered Taz close to Xena’s horse.

"They’re fine Blaise. They miss you very much. You won’t recognize the kids because they have gotten so big." Xena answered with a proud smile.

"I guess not...I’m sorry I missed them getting bigger." Blaise answered with regret that she missed so many moons with her children.

The pair rode for over a half a candle mark and felt it was safe to stop assured that they weren’t being followed. They found a cave near a stream to take shelter in for the evening. Blaise dismounted Taz and hugged him to thank him for helping to save her. She patted him as she released her hug with a big smile.

"Blaise...you should be proud of that horse. He was certainly persistent about finding you." Xena informed her as she removed her horse’s saddle.

"I am Xena. He’s a great horse. Aren’t you boy?" Blaise asked as she rubbed his neck and began to remove his saddle, which she dropped from the heaviness and being so weak.

"Hey...you okay Blaise?" Xena asked with concern as she moved over to Blaise.

"Oh, yeah...never better." Blaise snapped back as she stormed out of the cave, grabbing her saddlebag before she left, and headed towards the stream. Blaise’s adrenaline wore off and she felt nauseated as she thought about having to kiss Magdeline because she felt as though she betrayed Ephiny.

The tears welled in her blue eyes and the nausea mounted when she thought about her betrayal and how much it was going to hurt Ephiny. She knelt down by the stream on all fours and became sick.

"Hey, you okay Blaise?" Xena asked softly with concern.

Blaise coughed and looked up at Xena as she wiped her mouth. "Could you just leave me alone?" Blaise asked with agitation and embarrassment.

"Blaise...what’s going on with you?" Xena asked with concern and frustration at her sister’s tone of voice.

"What’s it look like Xena? I’ve been in a damn prison for over two moons and I’ve had the snot beaten out of me! Is it too much to ask for me to blow chow in privacy?" She shouted with anger.

"I’m sorry...I was just trying to help." Xena answered agitatedly as she headed back to the cave.

"Damn it!" Blaise replied with regret for yelling at Xena. She knew she was only trying to help and she appreciated it, but she just couldn’t bare to look at her for fear she’d see the guilt in her eyes.

Blaise stripped her dirty clothes off and pulled out her toothbrush and paste out of her saddlebags to brush her teeth as she stepped into the cold stream to bathe. She scrubbed her teeth and tongue to get the vile taste of Magdeline out of her mouth. She spent more time than usual brushing her teeth to get the taste out. She hated to have had to do what she did, pretending to want Magdeline in order to break free. But, she knew it has been the only way.

Hopefully, Ephiny would one day forgive her. She thought to herself as she ducked her head under the cold water reviving her weakened and battered body. Blaise felt her strength returning slowly and headed out of the water.

She wrapped her towel from her saddle bag around her waist, and grabbed her clothes to head back to the cave.

Xena looked up and was surprised to see Blaise standing before her half naked. "Aah...you feeling better?" She asked as she noticed the bruises that covered Blaise’s body.

"Yep...thanks." Blaise answered as she tossed her clothes in the fire and pulled fresh clothes out of her saddlebag.

"Blaise...it looks like you’ve got a couple of broken ribs and you could use some stitches in the wound on your shoulder. Sit down and I’ll sew it up." Xena replied as she pulled her needle and thread out of her saddlebag.

"Yeah...they got me pretty good." Blaise answered as she slipped on her boxer shorts and then her black leather pants followed by her sports bra and winced in pain with every movement of her shoulder. She sat down next to Xena who concentrated on threading the needle.

Xena began to suture the wound and looked at Blaise wondering what was going on with her, and wondered what in tartarus happened. Blaise was not her chatty, fun loving self. She had something on her mind and hoped she would confide in her as to what the problem was all about. She missed that cocky, smartass attitude her sister once had.

Xena continued to suture Blaise’s wound and was amazed that Blaise felt no pain as she attended to her sister’s wound...but then again Blaise was off in another time zone. She was oblivious to her surroundings.

"Who was she Blaise?" Xena asked as she slipped the needle through the wound.

"Huh?" Blaise asked as she snapped out of her trance and looked at Xena.

"Who was the woman?" Xena asked clarifying her question as she looked into Blaise’s blank blue eyes.

"Aah...a former lover." Blaise answered reluctantly as she watched Xena work on her arm.

"You upset about killing her?" Xena asked as she glanced up at her.

"Not in the least bit Xena." Blaise answered callously as she stared back out of the cave opening.

"You seem upset by it Blaise." Xena answered wondering what was going through her sister’s head. It worried her that Blaise seemed unremorseful and it reminded her of Ares’ callousness.

"No...aah...just feeling guilty about betraying Ephiny." Blaise answered with regret as she looked down at the ground.

"What? Betrayed Ephiny? How?" Xena asked confused.

"You’re not gonna let this go are you until I tell you... right?" Blaise asked as she looked back at Xena and knew she would drag it out of her no matter how much she tried to hide it. The guilt was killing her and maybe if she talked to Xena about it she might feel better. She thought to herself.

"You know me well little sister." Xena answered with a chuckle.

"I kissed and put my arms around the wench. That’s how I betrayed Ephiny." Blaise answered with agitation at the thought of it.

"Blaise you did that to get out of there. I’m sure Ephiny will understand."

"Maybe...I hope she does because I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if she didn’t." Blaise answered hoping she would understand as her guilt overwhelmed her.

"She will...give her some credit Blaise." Xena answered reassuringly as she finished suturing the wound. "You had to do it to distract her so, stop feeling guilty about it. How did you get captured in the first place?"

"I was ambushed and they shot Taz with a dart. As he reared up his head hit mine and knocked me out. I woke up in the prison to find out that she was working for my father who wants to eliminate me and use Chayce as his heir." Blaise explained with agitation and disgust that Ares would take Chayce.

"That figures. That bastard!" Xena answered with anger.

"Lovely father we have huh?" Blaise answered with a sarcastic tone in her voice as she looked up at Xena.

"Just got to love daddy!" Xena answered with sarcasm and anger.

"Not!" They both answered in unison with a laugh.

Xena pushed Blaise’s hair off her face and rubbed her back lovingly. "Feeling better now?" Xena asked with concern.

"I’ll be better when I see my beautiful wife and children." Blaise answered with a smile and looked back down. " Xena...thanks for coming to get me. I really appreciate it and for looking out for my family."

"You don’t have to thank me Blaise. I love you and they’re my family too." Xena answered with a smile as she hugged Blaise.

"Thanks and I love you too." Blaise whispered in Xena’s ear gratefully.

"Okay...stop getting mushy on me." Xena teased as she broke the hug and rummaged through her bag for some bread to give to Blaise. "Here...you need to eat. You’ve lost a lot of weight and you’ve go to keep up that sexy image so the chicks will dig you." Xena teased with a laugh, which was shared by Blaise as she excepted the bread offering.

Blaise’s laugh turned serious as she took a bite of her bread and stood up. "Xena...aah...what would you say to me deciding to take over as the God of War?" Blaise asked as she contemplated taking over for her father.

"I would say what took you so long to finally decide it was time to fulfill your destiny?" Xena answered as she looked at Blaise who turned to face her.

"Do you truly believe I would make a good God of War?" Blaise asked searching for Xena’s approval.

"It doesn’t matter what I believe Blaise."

"It does to me Xena." Blaise answered as she moved closer to her sister seeking assurance that it was the right decision.

Xena put her hand on Blaise’s shoulder. "Yes...I do believe you will make a very good God of War but, what I want to know is, do you believe you will?" Xena asked searching Blaise’s eyes for doubt which she didn’t find.

"I truly believe I will Xena." Blaise answered as she saw sincerity in her sister’s eyes.

"Then it’s time to take over, but what made you decide to do it now?"

"I’m doing the same thing to the twins that father did to me when I was a child and I don’t want that for my children." Blaise explained animatedly with her hands as she walked around the cave. "If I’m the God of War I can be with them for the majority of the time and plus, I’m tired of seeing a war break out just for father’s sheer pettiness. I’ve had too many friends die in vain because of his nonsense." Blaise explained sadly and with regret over the senseless deaths that have been caused by her father.

"Then you should do it Blaise. Have you spoken to Ephiny about it?"

"No...I finally realized it was time when I was chained up in the prison with nothing to do but think about it. Oh, remind me to do away with uncle Hephastus’ metals by the way. I could have been out of there a long time ago had it not been for his shackles." Blaise answered with a chuckle.

"I’ll remind you. Now, get some sleep so we can get on the road early tomorrow."

"I’m ready to go now." Blaise answered eager to see her family as she slid her black tunic on over her head.

"No...you rest tonight and we will leave early in the morning." Xena demanded as she led Blaise over to the bedroll. "Listen to your older sister...she knows a thing or two about these things." Xena teased.

"Yes ma’am." Blaise answered with a laugh as she lay down. As much as she wanted to see her family she knew she didn’t feel well enough to travel. "Hey, how big is Gabrielle now?"

"She’s getting out there." Xena answered with a proud smile.

"Any crazy cravings yet?’

"Not crazy...just disgusting." Xena answered with a laugh, which was shared by Blaise.

"I can relate. I couldn’t watch Ephiny eat because her’s were hideous." Blaise answered with a laugh. "Are you happy Xena?" Blaise asked with a smile as she turned to see the expression on her sister’s face.

"More than I have ever been in my whole life." Xena answered with a wide smile.

"I’m really happy for you, but just wait until those hormone’s kick in a little more and she snaps you’re head off for not doing or saying something she wants you too." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"Been there....done that already." Xena answered with a laugh, which Blaise shared. "Go to sleep." Xena replied as she rolled over and closed her eyes.

"Night and thanks again." Blaise answered as she closed her eyes. ‘I’m on my way home to you baby!’ Blaise thought to herself as if Ephiny could hear what she was saying.

Ephiny finally got the twins settled and lay back on the bed exhausted. She never realized how exhausting twins could be and she wondered how Blaise did it when they were first born. She smiled fondly as she remembered how exhausted her sexy lover was when she put on that hideous outfit of boxer shorts over her pants.

Ephiny felt guilty for having self-pity and about her conversation with Gabrielle. She loved Blaise and the twins and she couldn’t imagine her life without them in it. She didn’t want to have to think that way. ‘How could I have considered wanting my old life back?’ She asked herself with regret. ‘That’s not what I want! You are such an idiot for wallowing in your own self-pity Ephiny, especially when you don’t know where your wife might be or whether she’s even alive!’ She admonished herself.

Ephiny had an overwhelming peaceful feeling consume her. ‘She’s safe and coming home.’ Ephiny told herself. She didn’t know how or why she felt that way...she just did and it was as if Blaise had told her that she was coming home. Ephiny smiled at the peacefulness that she hadn’t felt in months, and thought about how much she wanted to have her sexy warrior cuddled up next to her lightly snoring in her ear. That part she could do without, but she would settle for it gladly if her lover was back were she belonged. ‘Soon!’ Ephiny replied in a sigh as she fell off to sleep with a very sexy warrior on her mind.

Blaise and Xena started out on their journey early anxious to get home...particularly Blaise. Xena thought she would be happy being out on the road again, but she wasn’t. She had a daily routine at the amazon village and even though she thought she hated it...in all actuality she missed it. She loved waking up in a comfy bed next to her incredibly sexy Amazon Queen wife, kicking the new Amazon recruit’s butts on a daily basis to train them, having lunch with the love of her life, and then getting the twins all riled up just before their nap time.

She loved to see how pissed off Ephiny would get with her when the twins were too excited to sleep, and made it a point to tweak the Amazon Regent’s temper any time she could. Xena thought with a mischievous grin. She also loved being able to rest and relax with her bard anytime she wanted not to mention having sex at anytime of the day in a comfortable bed! Xena smiled fondly at the thought of having sex anytime with Gabrielle and missed not being home.

The only thing missing from her routine was a good day’s fishing with her little sister. She was glad Blaise was on her way back home and she never realized just how much she missed her until she saw her chained to the wall in the prison...beaten. She took it for granted that Blaise was always around and it scared her seeing her that way, knowing she could very well have lost her. Xena hated the fact that someone would do that to her baby sister and she made sure the guards felt just as much pain as Blaise did when she took them out.

Xena looked at Blaise and smiled lovingly... glad that they were both riding side by side. She couldn’t have ever imagined a better sister than Blaise...well...except for some of her pranks she could do without, but she wouldn’t want anyone else for her sister. Xena noticed Blaise was making a detour from the normal route home.

"Hey! Where are we going?" Xena asked confused.

"I have to stop by Troy briefly to make sure everything is okay." Blaise answered as they heeled the horses into a faster gallop towards the city.

The pair made it to Troy to find the city in ruin with dead soldiers scattered throughout the city.

"What in tartarus?" Blaise asked as her voice trailed off when she looked over the horrid scene.

"By the gods, Blaise!" Xena exclaimed as they dismounted.

They led the horses through the masses of bodies in horror. Blaise saw her general laying mortally wounded and rushed to his side to see if she could help him.

"General...you okay?" Blaise asked with concern as she lifted him up in her arms.

"Blaise." He mustered weakly as her and Xena checked his wounds.

"What happened?"

"They...they...hid in the horse and wiped us out!" He weakly informed her as he gasped for air and closed his eyes.

"General! General!" Blaise shouted as she shook him to wake him.

Xena put her hand on Blaise and they locked blues as Xena shook her head indicating he was gone. Blaise laid the general back down and wiped her face with her hand as she contemplated her actions. She stood up and looked up at the sky.

"Ares! I’m coming for you next! This is your fault!" She shouted with anger and pointed knowing he was watching. Xena put her hand on Blaise’s shoulder for comfort as Blaise looked at her. "I’m taking him down once and for all Xena. If you have a problem with that let me know now." Blaise informed her with anger.

"I have no problem...it’s time for him to be taken down Blaise. I’ll help anyway I can."

"Thanks...but no thanks...he’s mine." Blaise answered with anger as she walked back towards Taz.

Blaise scared Xena at times, especially like now. She reminded Xena of Ares in so many ways. She could be ruthless just like him, but at least she used her ruthlessness towards injustice and her father. She hoped she would not become more like Ares once she assumed her godhood.

"By the gods! Where’s Joxer?" Blaise asked with worry as she scanned the bodies hoping she wouldn’t see her closest confidant dead.

"Joxer!" Xena yelled out with worry.

They mounted the horses and searched the city inside and out with no sign of Joxer. "Let’s hope he got out before this happened." Blaise replied with worry.

"Let’s go home Blaise...maybe he’s waiting there." Xena answered as they rode out of the city towards the Amazon village.

The pair rode for over three candle marks before seeing a camp and stopped to see if the people may have seen Joxer. Blaise walked up and saw there was a person sound asleep in his bedroll. "Joxer!" She replied excitedly as she recognized him and knelt down grabbing him by the shoulders. "Dude!" She exclaimed with happiness.

"By the gods!" He shouted as he was startled out of his sleep. "Blaise! You’re alive!" He answered with equal enthusiasm and hugged her.

"We worried you were dead with the rest of the soldiers." Blaise answered with regret and remorse for her fallen comrades.

"I thought the same about you." Joxer answered as he stood up. "Xena! Hey!" He replied with a smile and clasped hands with her knowing she wouldn’t allow a hug.

"Glad to see you’re okay Joxer." Xena answered with a smile as they all sat back down next to the fire.

"What happened dude?" Blaise asked with wonder.

"We thought we had defeated their army and they offered the wooden horse as a gift, but we didn’t know they had soldiers hidden in it and they wiped us out. We tried to hold them off as long as possible, but we were no match for them." Joxer answered with regret at the thought of the blood bath.

"I should have been there." Blaise answered with regret.

"Where were you anyway?" Joxer asked with wonderment.

"In prison!" Blaise answered with disgust and anger.

"No way! Who and what army put you there?" Joxer asked with surprise.

Blaise lowered her head and scratched the back of her neck with embarrassment at her capture. "Well...aah...Taz and an ex-lover working for my father put me in there."

"No freaking way! But how did Taz do it?"

"Way! He was shot by a dart and his head hit mine knocking me out so, that’s how I was captured." Blaise explained sheepishly and was tired of telling the embarrassing story over and over again.

"Oh, speaking of your father Blaise. I heard Hercules was able to free the Gods that Ares trapped and your father is at Olympus being reprimanded." Joxer informed Blaise.

Blaise looked at Joxer with a sly grin. "Yes! But I’m still taking him down." Blaise answered with a smile at the thought of bringing her father down to mortal status. "We need to get back." Blaise answered with urgency as she moved towards Taz.

"Why?" Joxer answered with bewilderment as he scrambled to his feet.

"The Gods won’t hold him for long and then he will go after Chayce." Blaise explained with worry as she mounted Taz.

Joxer hurriedly gathered his belongings as Xena and him mounted their horses to join Blaise in her journey back to the village.

The trio made it to the amazon village by mid-morning after their long ride back. They steered the horses towards the stables and Blaise dismounted Taz. "Go find your family Blaise. We’ll tend to Taz." Xena replied with a smile as she dismounted her horse followed by Joxer.

"Thanks Xena...for everything." Blaise answered with an appreciative smile.

"That’s what sister’s are for Blaise." Xena answered with a chuckle.

"Yeah...they are and I’m glad you’re mine." Blaise answered with a smile as she headed off to find her soulmate.

As she headed towards the center of the village she caught a glimpse of Ephiny through the crowd, as they were busy preparing for their morning training sessions. She noticed Ephiny was in a heated conversation with one of her warriors. Her back was turned to Blaise, but she knew it was Ephiny by her mannerisms, her beautiful long, blonde curly hair and those ever so sexy muscular legs of hers.

Blaise’s gait accelerated as a smile crossed her face. Her only intent was to hold her wife in her arms. Her emotions overwhelmed her at the sight of her bride. Everything she had ever felt for Ephiny consumed her two-fold. Her throat tightened, the butterflies took flight, her heart raced and she fought to hold back the tears that wanted to flow when she saw her soulmate. Ephiny stopped her conversation from a familiar feeling she was getting. "Blaise." She replied as she turned around to see her tall, dark lover approaching her with a haggard yet, cocky swagger.

She smiled as tears of happiness formed and she ran towards Blaise. Blaise’s heart raced faster as she saw her bride approach her just as it did the first time she had ever seen Ephiny. She was excited and nervous at the same time. Ephiny approached Blaise and she engulfed her in a hug.

"Hey baby." Blaise replied softly as she enjoyed the feeling of being in Ephiny’s arms. It felt so good and safe to be wrapped in them just as she remembered it would be when she sat in the prison and thought of Ephiny.

Ephiny looked at Blaise with worry and concern. "Blaise...what happened?" Ephiny asked with concern at the cuts and bruises on Blaise’s face.

Blaise flashed a sexy smile as she looked into Ephiny’s beautiful hazel eyes. "Ssh...later." Blaise answered as she lifted Ephiny off of the ground and pressed her lips against Ephiny’s for a soul-searing kiss as Ephiny tightly wrapped her arms around her warrior’s neck.

Ephiny wrapped her legs around Blaise’s waist as she deepened her kiss and didn’t care what it looked like with the Amazon Regent wrapped around her lover. Blaise felt regenerated and alive again in Ephiny’s arms as she carried her to their hut continuing their kiss.

Ephiny broke their kiss and hugged Blaise tighter as she whispered in Blaise’s ear. "I love you honey."

Tears slid down Blaise’s face as she had longed to hear those words from Ephiny and held her as close as she could. "I love you Eph." She whispered back.

Blaise savored Ephiny’s loving hug and took in her scent that she so loved and missed. It meant so much to Blaise for her to be able to hold and kiss her soulmate that the feeling was indescribable. She thought to herself. She never wanted to let Ephiny go. Blaise’s blues locked with Ephiny’s hazels and she kissed her passionately as they entered the hut to a surprised nanny.

Blaise broke her kiss and looked at the nanny with anger as she recognized her and put Ephiny down. Blaise moved towards the nanny with obvious animosity. "Get out!" Blaise angrily replied.

"Blaise!...what in tartarus are you doing?" Ephiny asked with agitation and bewilderment as to what caused Blaise’s mood to change so dramatically.

"Now...Blaise." The woman protested as she put her hand up to stop Blaise’s interruption. "It’s not what you think."

"I’m sure it is what I think. Now, get out and stay away from my family!" Blaise answered with a low tone and an angry look on her face to get her point across that she was livid, and that the woman was not welcome there.

Ephiny had never seen Blaise so upset and angry towards someone and wondered what was going on with her. Ephiny stood between Blaise and the nanny to see the anger in Blaise’s blue eyes.

"Blaise what is going on?"

"She works for my father Eph that’s what’s going on!" Blaise answered with anger.

"What!" Ephiny exclaimed with surprise. "Blaise...honey are you sure about that because Aphrodite brought her here to help me out." Ephiny explained trying to calm Blaise down.

"That’s what I’ve been trying to explain to you Blaise. Aphrodite and Cupid sent me to help Ephiny with the children while you were away. I no longer work for your father." The woman explained hoping Blaise would calm down as well. "I’m surprised you would think that I would do anything to hurt you or your children considering I helped take care of you when you were a child." The woman answered with hurt in her voice.

Blaise’s demeanor turned less ominous and she put her head down with embarrassment. "I’m sorry for the way I acted Sadie but you know my father and what he’s capable of so, I couldn’t take any chances considering his latest escapade." Blaise explained with regret for the way she acted toward the older woman whom she always liked very much.

"Wait...what escapade?" Ephiny asked with confusion as to what Blaise was talking about.

"I’ll explain later Eph." Blaise answered as she looked from Ephiny back to Sadie for her to continue the conversation.

"I understand and your apology is excepted. I have never agreed with your father’s views and I was only loyal to him because of you Blaise."

Blaise moved over and hugged the older woman. "I’m so sorry. Please forgive me." She asked hoping she would forgive her.

"I already have besides, I can understand your position. You have to protect your family and I would have reacted the same way if I was in your position." The woman answered as she broke the hug. "It’s understandable considering all the crap your father has put you through and done to you Blaise. Don’t worry okay?" She asked in a comforting tone, which was always able to put Blaise at ease.

Blaise smiled. "I’ll try not to worry...thank you." Blaise answered happier.

"Great...now, spend some time catching up with your wife and children. I’m sure you’ve missed them considering the entrance I was just greeted with by you two." Sadie answered with a mischievous grin. Blaise looked at Ephiny with a shy smile, who laughed with a slight look of embarrassment on her face.

"I intend to catch up very soon." Blaise answered with a sly grin.

"Let me know when you want me to take care of the children for the two of you." She replied as she headed towards the door.

"We will...thank you." Ephiny answered as they watched the woman leave the hut.

"Now, come here you sexy Amazon and kiss me!" Blaise replied with a sexy smile as she pulled Ephiny closer to her and leaned down for a wet, lingering kiss. Blaise broke the kiss and smiled as she looked into Ephiny’s hazel eyes. "How are our twins?" Blaise asked as she clasped Ephiny’s hand not wanting to lose her connection, and walked towards the crib’s where the children slept.

"They’re asleep finally after their lunch." Ephiny answered with a relieved sigh.

Blaise put her hands on the railing of Chayce’s crib and lovingly watched him sleep as her heart raced and tears welled in her eyes. "He’s so big." Blaise replied softly as Ephiny put her arm around Blaise’s waist and kissed her arm lightly for comfort grateful her sexy warrior was home.

Blaise felt guilty and was upset that she missed so much of their lives. She hated it that she wasn’t there for her family. Blaise reached into the crib and gently picked her son up into her arms and held him close to her chest.

Ephiny smiled lovingly as her tears trickled down her cheek. She was amazed as to how gentle her strong warrior wife, the future God of War could be with her children. It melted her heart to see her hold the twins. Ephiny reached up and stroked her wife's dark hair and removed her scabbard as Blaise held Chayce and watched him sleep peacefully against her muscular chest..

Blaise softly kissed her son’s cheek and stroked his dark, wavy hair, which was a lot longer now enjoying the feel of her child in her arms. She gently lowered him back into the crib and moved over to pick up Jordyn.

She smiled adoringly as she saw that Jordyn had blond curls like her beautiful soulmate and held her close to her. Blaise softly kissed her cheek and thought to herself that the beatings she received in prison were nothing compared to not being able to hold her children. She never wanted to be away from them like that again and knew she had to do something to assure that she would never be away for that long again.

Ephiny watched the tender reunion with admiration and wondered where Blaise had been. She knew it must have been very hard and difficult for her or Blaise would have said something already. Ephiny wouldn’t press the issue and knew Blaise would tell her when she was ready to. Ephiny was overwhelmingly happy that Blaise was back home with them.

Ephiny knew Blaise was hurt and upset by something that happened while she was gone. She could see it in her eyes, her mannerisms and by how quiet and reserved she was being. She wondered and worried what could have happened to her considering the looks of the wounds on her face. She bet that the person who tangled with her was probably far worse off than Blaise. Ephiny only wanted to hold Blaise and take her pain away...to show her how much she loved and missed her.

She knew now was not the time to tell Blaise of the Amazon custom’s regarding boys being born in the village. 'Of course, it never is a good time for something like that but it would have to wait for now. 'Ephiny thought to herself as she slid her hands underneath Blaise’s vest to rub her back. Blaise jumped forward and winced in pain from Ephiny’s touch against her battered body. "Blaise...what’s wrong? Are you okay?" Ephiny asked with worry as Blaise put Jordyn back to bed. "Blaise." Ephiny responded as she turned Blaise around to face her. She began to take Blaise’s vest off. "Talk to me baby. What in tartarus happened?" Ephiny asked with worry as she removed her vest and tunic. "By the gods!" Ephiny exclaimed in horror as tears welled in her eyes from the massive bruises on Blaise’s abdomen. She moved behind Blaise and found more on her back. "Blaise." Ephiny replied softly with hurt and sorrow in her eyes as she faced Blaise.

"It’s not as bad as it looks Eph." Blaise answered with a smile to reassure Ephiny she was okay as she wiped away her tears.

"But you’re hurt." Ephiny exclaimed as she pointed to the bruises.

"Nah...this is nothing. What really hurt was being away from you and the twins." Blaise answered as she put her arms around Ephiny.

"Please tell me what happened." Ephiny pleaded with concern.

"I don’t want to talk about it right now and spoil our reunion sweets. I need you." Blaise whispered as she pressed her lips against Ephiny’s seeking entrance for her roaming tongue. Ephiny gladly parted her lips to receive her lover’s offering and wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck to deepen the kiss.

Ephiny thought about how much she loved to kiss Blaise and how wonderful her soft lips felt against her own. She was a fabulous kisser who possessed a knack for expressing just how much she loved her through one kiss. Everything Blaise did expressed her love to Ephiny she thought as the kiss rocked her to the core. Her desire for Blaise mounted as did the wetness between her legs.

She had missed Blaise terribly and didn’t want to miss one thing about their reunion. She thought to herself as she felt Blaise untie her bra and slip her hands underneath the material to caress her soft breasts.

‘Oh, her kiss and touch is so intoxicating, so gentle, so loving, and only for me.’ Ephiny thought happily as she enjoyed the sensation she felt from Blaise’s touch and kiss. She had a warmth sweep across her body followed by a tingly sensation, which traveled straight to her sex.

Blaise lifted Ephiny up in her arms and sat down on the bed as Ephiny straddled her continuing their passionate kiss. Blaise lay back on the bed as Ephiny laid on top of her. "I missed you so much Eph." Blaise whispered as she kissed Ephiny’s neck softly and moved her hands down her tone, curvaceous body removing her skirt.

Blaise’s ministrations where driving Ephiny nuts and she began to remove Blaise’s sports bra to feel her naked, muscular body against her own. "Blaise...I love it when you kiss and touch me." Ephiny whispered in her ear as she worked her kiss down Blaise’s neck to her chest capturing a hardened nipple in her mouth. Blaise ran her hands up and down Ephiny’s back completely reveling in Ephiny’s kiss and her body against her own.

She loved Ephiny so much and her touch was so soft, so delicate, so caring and it told Blaise just how much she loved her. Her body heat rose from Ephiny’s mouth wrapped around her nipple and she slipped her hand through her long blonde curls and held her head closer to her breast heightening her arousal. She watched Ephiny’s movements and found it to be very erotic as her wetness between her leg’s mounted.

Ephiny moved her soft kiss to Blaise’s muscular midsection placing light, loving kisses on her bruises as she untied Blaise’s pants. She slowly kissed Blaise’s body all the way up to her mouth and traced her tongue along the contours of Blaise’s lips before sliding it inside for a deep, moist kiss.

Blaise’s heart raced with anticipation of having Ephiny. "I want to taste you Eph." Blaise whispered through her kiss as she squeezed her firm backside deepening the kiss which sent a pulsating sensation straight to Ephiny’s center, and she gasped at the declaration. "I want to circle my tongue around your clit and slid it inside of you." Blaise whispered through her kiss and slid her tongue deeper inside of Ephiny’s mouth.

Ephiny’s breath escaped her and her heart pounded from her intensified arousal. "That’s an offer I can’t refuse." She whispered as Blaise coaxed her up towards her face. Ephiny straddled Blaise’s face as Blaise placed her hands on Ephiny’s hips and could smell Ephiny’s sweet nectar waiting for her to take it.

Blaise couldn’t wait any longer and slid her tongue inside of Ephiny’s moist opening as Ephiny gasped in pleasure and threw her head back. "Oh, Blaise!" She moaned in delight.

‘Oh, she tastes so sweet and she’s so wet. All I want to do is devour all of her.’ Blaise thought to herself as Blaise aggressively moved her tongue in and out of Ephiny. Ephiny tasted just as Blaise had remembered and longed for while she was in prison. Blaise fervently licked and sucked Ephiny’s swollen nub as Ephiny rocked her hips faster encouraging Blaise’s aggressiveness.

Her movements turned her on beyond belief and she didn’t want to slowly and gently make love. No, she wanted Ephiny to give herself to her right away. She needed that from her lover to feel their connection again. Blaise thought as she devoured Ephiny’s sex as though she had never had Ephiny before.

Ephiny moved her hips faster as Blaise licked her sex with a fluttering motion. Ephiny threw her head back in pleasure draping her long curls across her back off her shoulders as she leaned back. Her heart pounded as her passion mounted. She missed Blaise so much and Blaise’s mouth and tongue between her legs felt so incredible. She thought to herself as her breathing became more labored.

Ephiny slid her hand down Blaise’s pants and found a very moist, swollen nub seeking attention. Ephiny slid her finger up and down the sensitive area and Blaise gasped from her touch and spread her legs wider, which encouraged Ephiny’s movements more.

Blaise’s tongue moved more forceful as she moved in and out of Ephiny. She could hear Ephiny’s deep breaths and felt her muscles tighten knowing her lover was reaching her climax.

Blaise sucked the swollen nub and pressed her tongue against it rubbing her tongue up and down before sucking the sensitive area into her mouth.

"Blaise...that feels so freaking incredible!" Ephiny shouted through her gasps for air. "I have something to give you baby." Ephiny shouted as she moved her finger faster along Blaise’s hard clit with Blaise moving her hips faster to match Ephiny’s movements.

That was Blaise’s cue to slid her tongue inside of Ephiny as she reached her climax and filled Blaise’s mouth with the treat Blaise so desired. ‘She tastes so good.’ Blaise thought to herself as she drank everything Ephiny had to offer. It meant everything to Blaise for Ephiny to give herself to her and it heightened her arousal.

Ephiny continued her finger movements knowing her lover was ready to release her orgasm. Blaise bucked her hips wildly as she released her orgasm taking in deep breaths as Ephiny released more of her orgasm for Blaise to devour. Ephiny panted as she tried to calm her breathing while Blaise continued her assault on Ephiny’s sex as Ephiny sat back up and tried to pull away but was unable to. Blaise held her there not wanting to let her go.

"Honey...you have to stop, it is starting to tickle really bad." Ephiny replied with a chuckle as she put her hand on Blaise’s forehead to hold her back. Blaise reluctantly moved her mouth away as Ephiny slid down on top of her. "What has gotten into you Blaise?" Ephiny asked with a satisfied smile as she wiped herself off of Blaise’s mouth.

"You have gotten into me. I told you I missed you Eph." Blaise answered with a cocky smile as she stuck her tongue out and moved up to slid it into Ephiny’s mouth for a deep, passionate kiss. "You’re not complaining are you?" Blaise asked as she broke the kiss and lay back down.

"Oh, no...never. I think we need to do the aggressive sex a little more...that really turned me on." Ephiny answered with a sexy smile.

"I will have sex with you anyway you want it baby." Blaise answered with a chuckle and a wiggle of her eyebrows as she rubbed her hands up and down Ephiny’s sweaty body enjoying every bit of her sexy body.

"Hmmm...I like the sound of that." Ephiny answered seductively as she leaned down and kissed Blaise capturing Blaise’s tongue in her mouth sucking on it.

Blaise chuckled through the kiss as Ephiny broke it and looked at her wondering what she was laughing at. "That feels so incredible Eph. Have I ever told you that you’re a fabulous lover?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile.

"Nah...not me...that’s your department." Ephiny answered with a slightly embarrassed smile.

"I beg to differ...you are absolutely incredible and you make me feel wonderful." Blaise answered with a smile as she put her hand behind Ephiny’s neck and pulled her down for a deep sensual kiss. "I love you so much." Blaise whispered before deepening the kiss and being interrupted by two crying children.

"I’m glad you’re home baby." Ephiny answered with a kiss as she moved to get up.

"Nope...I’m going to get them. You stay right there." Blaise demanded as she rolled Ephiny on her back and smiled before she softly kissed her lips.

Blaise broke the kiss and climbed out of bed. Anger and sorrow filled Ephiny as she looked at the bruises on Blaise. She wished she could have given the people who did that to her a real good beating for inflicting so much pain on her wife.

Blaise slipped her tunic on gingerly and moved towards the crib to pick up Jordyn. "Hey, sweetpea!" Blaise replied with a child like voice and a smile as she reached down to pick her up. Jordyn screamed and crawled away from her.

Ephiny sat up in bed and looked at Blaise with confusion as Chayce did the same thing to Blaise when she tried to pick him up. Blaise looked at Ephiny with bewilderment and sadness. "What’s wrong?" She asked as Ephiny climbed out of bed and moved to the cribs to check on the kids.

"I’m not sure honey." Ephiny answered as she picked Jordyn up with no altercation. Jordyn lay against Ephiny’s chest facing Blaise who reached to touch her back and Jordyn slapped her hand away. "Jordyn...that’s your mother." Ephiny replied softly as Blaise looked at Ephiny with tear filled and hurtful blue eyes.

"Maybe it’s because of the bruises and cuts on your face babe. Maybe she’s afraid." Ephiny answered as she tried to find a reason why Jordyn acted that way.

"Yeah...maybe." Blaise whispered with sadness and pain in her heart that her children rejected her. She sat on the bed and wondered why the twins acted that way. She felt bad that she frightened the children and hoped that was all that was wrong.

Maybe they knew she was gone for a long time and held it against her. Would children that young know that and feel that way? She asked herself as she watched Ephiny calm Jordyn and then Chayce.

"Blaise can you do me a favor and go to the food hut to pick up their dinner?...Sadie should have everything prepared. They usually get cranky if they’re hungry. Do you feel up to it?" Ephiny asked as she looked at Blaise with a feeling of sadness that Blaise was hurt.

"Yeah...sure...aah...they don’t breast feed anymore?" Blaise asked with slight confusion as to their routine.

"No...I’ve weaned them off seeing as how they are getting so big so fast." Ephiny explained as Blaise stood up from the bed.

"Aah...okay...I’ll be right back." Blaise responded softly as she lowered her head dejected that her children rejected her, and that she didn’t know that they were no longer breast feeding as she left the hut.

Blaise entered the food hut to get the food from Sadie. Sadie noticed Blaise’s demeanor as she approached and knew something was wrong. "What’s wrong Blaise?" She asked with concern.

"My children hate me just as I hated my father for being away so much." Blaise answered with sadness in her voice.

"They do not Blaise. They just have to get used to you again. You’ll see in no time they will be all over you again." She answered reassuringly and smiled as she handed Blaise the tray."

"I hope so." Blaise answered reluctantly and still not feeling quite as assured.

Ephiny put the children in their high chairs and put their bibs on them for their meal. "Why are you two acting like that towards your mother? That’s not nice." Ephiny asked as she heard a knock. "Come in!" She shouted as she looked over her shoulder to see who entered the hut.

"Hi Ephiny!...sorry to bother you but can we go over a couple of these proclamations?" Gabrielle asked as she approached.

"Sure Gabrielle... Just let me get the kids all set for their meal." Ephiny answered as she finished putting the bibs on the twins.

"How are Auntie Gabrielle’s cutiepies doing?" Gabrielle asked in babytalk as she kissed their heads and received a giggle from each one.

"They aren’t too pleased about their mother being home." Ephiny answered as they both sat down and Ephiny began to look over the scroll.

"Why? I thought they would be happy to see Blaise." Gabrielle asked with confusion as she looked at the kids who were amusing themselves by sticking their fingers in each other’s faces.

"I think they might be afraid of Blaise."

"Why would they be afraid of her?" Gabrielle asked with concern and with a laugh as Jordyn grabbed Chayce’s finger and he struggled to regain it. "She’s going to be one tough Amazon Ephiny." Gabrielle replied with a chuckle.

Ephiny’s hazel eyes shifted up to meet green’s and she slyly grinned. "Did you expect anything else out of my kid Gabrielle?"

Gabrielle and Ephiny shared a laugh. "No...not at all." She answered with a chuckle. "So, why would they be afraid of Blaise?"

"Well...her face is pretty badly battered as well as the rest of her body." Ephiny explained with regret as she looked back down at the scroll.

"By the gods Ephiny!...what happened?" Gabrielle asked with a look of shock as her Regent looked back up at her Queen.

"I’m not sure...she didn’t want to talk about it. She seems very emotionally hurt by whatever happened and she’s acting strangely." Ephiny answered with concern for Blaise.

"How do you mean?"

"Well...just not wanting to talk, she isn’t her normal cocky, confidant self and she was overly aggressive when we made love earlier. Don’t get me wrong...I enjoyed it but she’s different...I can feel it."

"Hmmm....something bad had to have happened for Blaise to not be so cocky and for her not to be so talkative Ephiny." Gabrielle answered as she wondered what could have happened.

"Did Xena say anything about Blaise to you?"

"I haven’t had a chance to talk to her yet. I was busy with these scrolls and she went straight in to bed and is sleeping now." Gabrielle explained.

"Alright...I’ve got the food for the kid’s." Blaise replied as she walked through the door carrying a tray with the food. Blaise looked up and saw Gabrielle. "Hey, Gabrielle!" Blaise replied with a smile and excitement to see her sister-in-law.

Gabrielle was shocked to see how many bruises and cuts Blaise had on her face. Once she collected herself she answered, "Hi Blaise...aah...how are you feeling?" Gabrielle answered trying to hide the shock on her face from Blaise’s looks.

"Better thanks." She answered as she put the tray down on the table and sat before the twins to start feeding them. Blaise scooped the food onto the spoon and held it out in front of her. "Okay..here we go... open wide." Blaise replied with a smile in babytalk as she put the spoon to Jordyn’s mouth.

Jordyn kept her mouth closed and turned her head to look at Ephiny who was busy with Gabrielle. "Eat your food for mom." Ephiny told Jordyn with a smile.

"Okay...maybe your brother wants some then...open wide Chay!" Blaise cooed as she moved the spoon to his mouth and he mimicked his sister’s reaction to the food. "Oh, come on...my little pumpkins." Blaise replied with disappointment in her voice. "It’s good see." Blaise answered as she ate the food on the spoon and smiled. "Hmmm...yummy. Now, come on...I know you’re hungry." Blaise responded as she put more food on the spoon and put it before Jordyn’s mouth who slapped the spoon away splattering food all over Blaise’s chest.

"Hey! That’s a new shirt." Blaise teased as Ephiny and Gabrielle looked on with concern and chuckled when they watched Blaise wipe the food off her tunic. "Okay...I’m not giving up feeding you two." Blaise answered as she scooped more food onto the spoon. "I know my little warrior is hungry and wants a mouth full of food...isn’t that right buddy?" Blaise asked in a sweet voice as she put the spoon to his mouth and Chayce slapped the food away landing in Blaise’s face.

Blaise wiped the food out of her eye. "Do you two have some kind of a twin conspiracy thing going on?" Blaise asked with agitation and frustration at herself for not being able to feed her children.

Blaise spooned more food and put it before Jordyn’s mouth who knocked the spoon out of Blaise’s hand hitting her in the head as the food splattered throughout her hair. Blaise tried to contain her anger and disappointment as the twins began to cry. Blaise tried to pick Jordyn up who squirmed away from Blaise and held her arms out to Ephiny as she screamed louder.

Blaise attempted to pick up Chayce who followed his sister’s lead and screamed even louder. Blaise was hurt and dejected by their reaction to her. She threw the towel in her hand down and stormed out of the hut to hide the tears that formed in her blue eyes.

"Blaise...wait!" Ephiny answered as she picked Jordyn up to console her and to calm the screaming child down as Gabrielle picked Chayce up and did the same.

Blaise walked over to the waterbarrel and removed the lid as tears ran down her face, upset from the children shunning her. She put her hands on each side of the barrel and drew in a deep breath as she tried to calm the feeling of disappointment and frustration.

Blaise stuck her head underwater and flipped her wet hair back. Blaise wiped the food from her face and hair as she felt a soft hand on her arm. "Baby...it’s okay." Ephiny replied softly as she kissed the back of Blaise’s muscular arm.

"No...Eph...it’s not." Blaise snapped as she turned to face her. "Our children hate me." Blaise answered with stormy blue eyes.

"Honey...they do it to me all the time...you have to make it a game when it comes to eating and they don’t hate you." Ephiny reassured Blaise as she wiped food off of Blaise’s face and chest.

Blaise looked into Ephiny’s eyes and was not reassured by what she had said. Blaise turned away from Ephiny and wiped the tears from her eyes as she thought about how she was the same way her father was with her to her own children. She swore she wouldn’t be that way and in fact, she was just like he was when she was a child. She hated how she felt.

"Blaise...please don’t turn away from me...they don’t hate you please believe me." Ephiny replied softly as she moved before Blaise and held her hand.

Blaise looked at Ephiny who could see the hurt in Blaise’s blue eyes. "Eph...I don’t even know my own children because I’ve been away so long." Blaise answered with feelings of pain, hurt and anger directed towards her father for forcing her to have to make the deal with him. "I should know that they like dinner to be made into a game." Blaise answered as she took a deep breath to calm her anger and pain. "Our children are growing up just as I did and I hate myself for it." She answered with guilt as the tears welled in her eyes again at the thought of it and she fought hard to keep them from falling.

"Blaise...honey." Ephiny answered as she put her hand on Blaise’s face trying to calm her down and alleviate her pain. "They aren’t growing up like you did babe. I promise you. They are just very stubborn just like you." Ephiny answered with a smile and gently poked Blaise in the stomach.

It didn’t matter how angry or however much pain Blaise had Ephiny always had a way of making her smile. Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny who hugged her tightly as Blaise kissed the top of Ephiny’s head. "So, I’m stubborn huh?" Blaise asked with a slight chuckle.

"Yes...just like your children." Ephiny answered with a laugh as she looked up at Blaise. "Come on...we’ll feed them together." Ephiny answered with a smile as Blaise leaned down to kiss her.

"Thanks." Blaise answered with a smile as Ephiny led her back to the hut.

"Have you two been good for Auntie Gabrielle?" Ephiny asked softly as she sat in front of them joined by Blaise.

"Little angels as always...which is hard to believe with a mother like Blaise." Gabrielle teased as she leaned down to kiss Blaise’s cheek. "Don’t give up they just have to get used to you again." Gabrielle whispered in Blaise’s ear before kissing Blaise’s cheek again.

Blaise smiled and looked up at Gabrielle. "Thanks Gabrielle...you’re getting out there you know?" Blaise teased as she put her hand on Gabrielle’s expanded abdomen.

"I should have known you wouldn’t miss an opportunity to point that out to me now would you?" Gabrielle laughed with a pinch to Blaise’s arm as she headed towards the door. "I’ll see you both tomorrow." Gabrielle replied before exiting the hut.

"Goodbye." Ephiny and Blaise answered in unison as Ephiny scooped up a spoonful of food. "Okay...here we go which one’s going to gobble this up?" Ephiny asked in a childlike voice as she waved the spoonful of food around as the twins giggled and followed the movement of the spoon.

"Which little mouth is the birdie going to land in?" Ephiny asked playfully as the twins giggled harder and opened their mouths as Ephiny put the spoon in Jordyn’s mouth.

Blaise smiled with complete joy and happiness in her heart as she watched the way Ephiny interacted with the children and hoped she would be able to do the same one day. Blaise watched on with amazement and saw Ephiny in a new light. She is absolutely radiantly beautiful and such a caring and loving mother. Blaise thought to herself as she adoringly watched Ephiny with the children. She’s everything that I have ever wanted in my life Blaise thought as her guilt consumed her and she felt horrible about what she did with Magdeline. She sighed sadly and hoped Ephiny would forgive her.

"Okay...let’s give mom a try at stuffing birds in those little mouths." Ephiny teased in a sweet voice as the kids looked at Blaise and smiled.

Blaise was mesmerized and touched by the smiles on their faces. Blaise just stared at her children and thought about how much she loved them. They were everything to her and she came very close to never seeing them again. She hoped that they knew just how much she loved and adored them.

"Honey." Ephiny replied softly as she touched Blaise’s hand and tried to figure out what Blaise was thinking about with such a far off look in her eyes and a smile of complete joy on her face. Blaise’s concentration was broken when Ephiny touched her hand and she looked at Ephiny.

"Did you say something?" Blaise asked with bewilderment.

"They’re waiting for you to feed them." Ephiny answered as she handed the spoon to Blaise and looked at the children then back to Blaise.

Blaise scooped the food onto the spoon and turned to the twins holding the spoon up. Blaise hesitated...nervous she would get the same reaction she did before and took a deep breath as Ephiny looked on lovingly hoping the children would respond positively to Blaise.

"Okay...where’s the birdie going to fly into?" Blaise asked as she tried Ephiny’s approach to feeding the twins.

The twins giggled as Blaise moved the spoon around as Ephiny did stopping in front of Jordyn’s mouth and then putting the spoon in Chayce’s mouth with a laugh. Blaise noticed Jordyn stuck out her bottom lip to pout. "Aah...is my little princess pouting?" Blaise asked as she leaned towards Jordyn with her lip stuck out. Jordan giggled and put her finger on Blaise’s lip, who was overwhelmed with joy at her daughter’s gesture who squealed with laughter when Blaise kissed her finger. Jordyn and Chayce melted Blaise’s heart every time she looked at them and held them in her arms.

Blaise knew what unconditional love meant when she looked into her daughter’s hazel eyes and was overwhelmed by happiness. Blaise had always wondered what unconditional love felt like and now she knew...the feeling was incredible. She wondered how she had gotten so lucky to have such a wonderful wife and such beautiful children. Blaise sat and took in the moment with a joyous smile on her face that Zeus himself couldn’t wipe off.

Blaise continued to feed the two as Ephiny watched on with pride and happiness. She could see that the twins were full from their meal. "I think it’s time we got these two little rugrats cleaned up." Ephiny replied with a laugh as she looked at the kid’s messy faces.

Blaise stood next to Jordyn who reached up to Blaise with her hands. Blaise reached down and picked her up as Chayce became mad. "Hey, what’s wrong with my boy?" Blaise asked in babytalk as she ran her hand across his black hair and looked into his tear filled blue eyes. Chayce put his hands up for Blaise to pick him up as well. Blaise smiled and lifted him up in her arms to join his sister. "Hey, Eph...can you get Lyceus’ ring for me...please? I would like to give it to Chayce. I bought a necklace for the ring to go on until he’s big enough to wear it."

"Sure...give me a minute." Ephiny answered back as she tried to finish what she was doing.

"Only one though." Blaise answered back teasingly and flashed Ephiny a sexy smile. "Oh, can you grab my saddlebag too? It’s got a present for both of the kids in there."

"Yes, dear...but what do you mistake me for? A bar wench or something who is to wait on you hand and foot?" Ephiny teased with a smile as she handed Blaise the said items.

"Nay...a bar wench wouldn’t give me such a hassale." Blaise answered with a laugh as she leaned down for a kiss, which Ephiny avoided with a laugh.

"Keep it up Blaise...see what you won’t be getting." Ephiny teased as she pointed at Blaise with a laugh to get her point across.

"You know you can’t resist my charms woman!" Blaise answered back with a laugh.

"Oh, yes I can...just watch me." Ephiny answered back with sarcasm as she continued to clean up the mess from the meal.

"Oh, yeah...like you did you threw yourself at me when we first met?" Blaise asked with a cocky sarcasm as she headed towards the chair by the fireplace struggling to carry the twins and her saddlebag.

"Well...that’s just because I felt bad for you." Ephiny answered with a laugh.

"Yeah...yeah...whatever." Blaise answered with a laugh.

Blaise sat in the chair near the fireplace with the twins in her lap to clean the children before bed. Ephiny handed Blaise a wet towel and Blaise cleaned off their faces, hair and arms. Blaise took their dirty clothes off and put them in their night clothes. She slipped the ring on the necklace she purchased for Chayce and put it around his neck making sure it wasn’t too big or too tight to harm him. "You are a stud muffin with that necklace on you Chay." Blaise replied in babytalk as Ephiny stopped what she was doing to see the necklace on Chayce.

"He is going to be quite the little heartbreaker isn’t he?" Ephiny answered with a smile and pride as Chayce grabbed the necklace and played with the ring on the end.

"Well...how could he not be considering he is my son?" Blaise answered with arrogantly with a smile as she looked up at Ephiny.

"Well...aren’t you full of yourself this evening." Ephiny teased as she lightly pinched Blaise’s neck with a shared laugh with Blaise.

"Here this is for you sweetpea." Blaise replied as she held a necklace up for Jordyn to wear. "I had Hephastus make a necklace with our two halves of our hearts like our necklaces for her considering she won’t be able to wear your helm for quite awhile. What do you think?" Blaise explained and asked as she looked up at Ephiny for acceptance.

"I think that’s wonderful honey. That was so thoughtful of you to do that for her." Ephiny answered with a smile as she watched Blaise put the necklace on Jordyn.

"Ooh, three heartbreakers in one family...how can you stand it Eph?" Blaise teased with a laugh as she looked at the necklace on Jordyn.

"It’s very difficult that’s for sure." Ephiny answered with a chuckle as she headed back to finish what she was doing, but not before receiving a playful slap on the ass from Blaise. She looked back at Blaise with a mischievous grin on her face. "Don’t start something you can’t finish Blaise." Then turned back around and finished cleaning up the mess from dinner thinking that her wife’s sarcastic attitude was coming back.

Blaise pulled out the binky’s she had Hephastus make for the twins. She stuck one in each of their mouths, which they happily excepted. "Hey, Eph!"

"What now? Would you like me to massage your feet? Do your laundry? What?" Ephiny teased Blaise as she looked back at her.

"You can do all of the above once you check out the binky’s I gave the kids." Blaise answered with excitement as she pointed to them.

"What is tartarus is a binky Blaise?" Ephiny answered with a confused look on her face as she saw that the twins seemed to be enjoying them.

"Well...it has a nipple made of some material from a rubber plant that Hephastus created and they suck on them. It keeps them quiet and they think they are sucking on a nipple which makes them happy and content...just like me when yours is in my mouth." Blaise answered with a sly smile and received a wet towel thrown in her face.

"That’s cool if it keeps them from crying a lot...maybe we should get you one?" Ephiny teased back and went back to her task.

Blaise put the twins on the floor to play with their toys and unlaced her boots to slip them off followed by her pants stripping down to her boxer shorts.

Blaise crawled onto the floor to play with the kids who moved over closer to Blaise to show her their toys. Ephiny finished cleaning up the table where the kids had made a mess and started laughing uncontrollably as she looked at Blaise.

Blaise and the twins looked at her. "What are you laughing at Ephiny?" Blaise asked with bewilderment.

Ephiny was laughing so hard she couldn’t speak and Blaise looked at the kids with an odd look on her face. "I think mommie has lost it." Blaise replied softly as the twins went back to playing. "Eph...what are you laughing at?" Blaise asked again as she looked back at Ephiny.

Ephiny calmed down enough to speak. "Blaise...I never expected you to wear those white boxer shorts with red hearts on them!" Ephiny answered as she began to laugh again at the hilarity of the situation.

Blaise sat up. "What did you expect me to wear Eph? All you stuck in my bag where a bunch of these." Blaise answered with agitation as she pointed to her boxers.

"What?" Ephiny asked with disbelief as she stopped laughing. "No...I put your black one’s in there too. I put those in as a joke." Ephiny explained as she approached Blaise.

"Well...my others weren’t in there only the ten pair of these." Blaise answered as she pulled on the fabric with agitation not finding as much humor in it as Ephiny.

"By the gods! I must have grabbed all of those by mistake." Ephiny exclaimed with embarrassment.

"Where did you get these from anyway?"

"Who do you think?" Ephiny asked with a sly smile.

"Salmoneus?" Blaise asked as she rolled her eyes with agitation at the thought of what Salmoneus would do with information that she wears boxer shorts with hearts on them.

"Yep...he was trying to peddle them and gave me those free of charge." Ephiny answered and raised her eyebrows at her next thought. "I hope he doesn’t try to advertise that the future God of War wear’s those boxer shorts." Ephiny answered with a sheepish grin trying to hide her laughter from Blaise regarding the thought.

"By Zeus Ephiny!" Blaise pointed with agitation. "You better hope he doesn’t."

Ephiny started to laugh again as Chayce showed his toy to Blaise by sticking it in her face. "Yes, baby...that’s a nice toy...here this is how it works." Blaise answered as she showed him how to use the toy. Ephiny lay on the floor behind Blaise still laughing and rested her chin on Blaise’s shoulder. "You think it’s really funny don’t you Eph?" Blaise asked with slight agitation but finally found the humor in it.

"I think you look very sexy in them." Ephiny answered seductively as she gazed into Blaise’s blue eyes and winked as she softly kissed Blaise’s muscular arm.

"Oh, you do huh?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile as she glanced back at Ephiny. "I bet Cupid would really dig a few pairs of these. I’ll have to give him some." Blaise replied with a laugh as she looked down at the boxers.

"Oh, yes I do...extremely sexy." Ephiny purred as she slid her hand over Blaise’s muscular abdomen and placed soft kisses along Blaise’s arm. "Can you ever forgive me for putting those in there honey?" She asked with a sly smile.

"I’m not sure Eph...it is pretty embarrassing but I’m sure I could come up with some way for you to make it up to me." Blaise teased back.

"Anything you say...your wish is my command." She seductively teased back.

"Ooh, are you sure you want to make that kind of a statement. I mean consider who you are saying that too and what kind of a dirty mind I have." Blaise answered with a sly grin.

"Either way... I win with my punishment." Ephiny teased back with a laugh as she lightly nipped on Blaise’s neck followed by a soft kiss.

"Hmmm...sounds like I might like handing out your punishment and it sounds like we will both get the good end of the deal." Blaise answered with a sexy laugh as Chayce lay on the floor and cuddled up against Blaise.

Ephiny stopped her kiss and smiled lovingly as she watched Blaise softly stroke his dark wavy hair putting him fast asleep. Ephiny ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair and thought about how much the two of them looked so much alike. "I guess he’s a lot like his mom...he likes his hair to played with also." Ephiny replied with a smile as Jordyn yawned from sleepiness but wanted to continue playing.

"Seems like she’s a lot like her mommie...stubborn." Blaise teased with a chuckle as Ephiny tweaked her backside.

"Very funny...hey, I was thinking...what if we go to your mother’s for a few days? She sent word that they are having a festival and would love for us to come for a visit. That is if you are feeling up to it?" Ephiny asked as she kept her chin resting on Blaise’s arm while they watched Jordyn play.

"That sounds great...I would love to see mother I’ve missed her so much. When do you want to leave?"

"When do you feel up to leaving? We could go in the morning if you want to." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise’s cheek and moved her hand up on her chest stroking her soft skin lightly.

"I feel pretty good and I suppose we could leave in the morning." Blaise answered as she thought about how much better being home has made her feel. She hardly felt any pain from her wounds just some soreness. "The best thing about being part god is you heal pretty quickly so, I should be fine to leave tomorrow." Blaise answered as she decided she wanted to see her mother and that it would make her feel better to do so.

"Great! It will be a lot of fun to get away. I’ll go tell Gabrielle that we will be leaving first thing in the morning then." Ephiny answered with excitement at the thought of their family trip as she kissed Blaise and stood up. "Hey, I should ask if they want to go too. Will that be alright with you?" Ephiny asked to make sure Blaise wanted the pair to join them.

"That would be awesome babe." Blaise answered with excitement at the thought of her entire family being together.

"Alright...I’ll be right back then." Ephiny answered with a smile as she left the hut.

Jordyn looked at Blaise with sleepy hazel eyes as she rubbed Chayce’s back while he slept soundly. "Is my princess sleepy?" Blaise asked softly as she pushed Jordyn’s blond curls off her face. "Come lay next to your brother and I." Blaise answered as Jordyn crawled over and laid next to Chayce already asleep with her head reached the pillow that Blaise had grabbed from the chair.

Blaise ran her fingers through Jordyn’s hair as she watched her two children sleep peacefully. She smiled lovingly as she looked at the twins and couldn’t believe how much Jordyn looked like Ephiny as she laid her head down to join her children in a deep sleep.

"Blaise! Gabrielle and Xena are going." Ephiny exclaimed with excitement as she entered the hut and found her family asleep on the floor in front of the fireplace curled up next to one another. Ephiny smiled lovingly as the tears welled in her eyes from the happiness that overwhelmed her.

The conversation she had with Gabrielle about feeling frustrated and helpless was insignificant, and she wished she would have never had it as she gazed at her family. That was her entire world laying before her and they meant everything to her. She thought to herself with regret for having the little pity party when she spoke with Gabrielle.

"Hey!... Ephiny!" Xena replied as she entered the door and Ephiny turned around with her finger over her mouth to quiet her.

"Ssh." Ephiny answered.

"What?" Xena asked softly with confusion.

Ephiny turned and pointed to the floor as Xena stepped beside her to see what Ephiny was looking at. Xena looked at her sister, niece and nephew cuddled together on the floor. "That’s so sweet." Xena answered with a loving smile on her face. Xena leaned closer to Ephiny. "What in tartarus is Blaise doing wearing those boxer shorts?" Xena asked with a chuckle.

Ephiny looked at Xena and put her hand on her shoulder. "By the gods Xena...don’t say anything to her or anyone else that you saw her in those...please?" Ephiny pleaded with the warrior.

"I don’t know Eph I need a little blackmail stuff to use on her." Xena teased as she crossed her arms over her chest.

"Please or I’ll have to tell everyone about the Warrior Princess horsy rides you give the twins which include fully animated horse sounds and riding gear so they don’t fall off." Ephiny answered back with a mischievous grin.

"How’d you know about those? Besides, I had to entertain them somehow." Xena asked with a raised eyebrow wondering how Ephiny knew about it.

"I have many skills as well Warrior Princess. Now, is it a deal?" Ephiny asked with a laugh knowing she had Xena nailed.

"Deal." Xena answered defeatedly as she clasped hands with Ephiny sealing the deal and laughed. She looked over at Blaise. "I wonder what Gabrielle would do if I put those on?" Xena asked with a sly smile and wonderment.

"You would probably get the same reaction that Blaise got...me laughing hysterically...but she is very sexy in them." Ephiny answered with a laugh as she looked at Blaise.

"Gabrielle could use a good laugh." Xena answered with a mischievous smile.

"Here... Salmoneus gave me a whole box of them." Ephiny answered as she pulled out a pair from a box in the corner of the hut and gave them to Xena.

"I should have known Salmoneus would make something like that!" Xena answered with a laugh as Ephiny handed her the shorts. "Listen, let’s get an earlier start than what we planned so we can get there before nightfall okay?"

"Sure...I’ll pack our things now to be ready to leave first thing. I’ll see you in the morning then." Ephiny answered with a smile.

"Okay...Ephiny your kids are beautiful and absolutely adorable...but then again how could they not be considering who they’re related to." Xena answered with a cocky smile as she glanced back at the kids and Blaise.

"You’re worse than Blaise Xena. I guess that arrogance runs in the family and look what I get to look forward too, Jordyn and Chayce being the same way. But you’re right, they are beautiful and adorable." Ephiny answered with a proud smile.

"You’re wife is okay too... especially in those shorts." Xena teased as she slapped Ephiny’s butt on her way to the door.

Ephiny laughed. "Hey, I want to see you in those boxer’s Xena!"

"I bet you do Ephiny!" Xena answered with a laugh. "Fat chance though." She responded with a wink.

"Just remember I have my ways of finding things out Miss. Thing...you’re in my territory so just beware!" Ephiny answered with a laugh as she began to gather their belongings for their trip.

"Remind me to stay on your good side." Xena answered with a laugh as she left the hut.

Ephiny finished packing their belongings for their trip to Cyrene’s and carried Jordyn to her crib and then Chayce to his as Blaise continued to sleep. She was grateful that Aphrodite had given them Blaise’s cribs to use and they both thought it was nice that the twins had the beds that their mother slept in when she was a baby.

Aphrodite explained that Blaise had two cribs... one that her father had given her which, of course, was black and emblazoned with his emblem on the both ends which Chayce now used. The other crib she had made for Blaise when Ares introduced Blaise to Aphrodite. The crib she chose was more suitable for a girl and was pink, of course, but she changed the color scheme for Jordyn because she knew Blaise would have a fit about the color.

Ephiny crawled in behind Blaise and began to place soft kisses along Blaise’s neck working her way to her back as her hands roamed her lovers ever so sexy muscular body. She wanted Blaise again and was about to have her as long as they weren’t disturbed by Gabrielle going into premature labor from the laughter Ephiny heard coming from their hut. Ephiny chuckled to herself as she thought about how funny it must look to have Xena...the Warrior Princess herself... parading around their hut wearing boxer shorts with hearts on them...even funnier than Blaise wearing them she thought with another chuckle.

Blaise woke up and looked around sleepily trying to focus... "Where are the twins?" She asked with concern as her heart raced with fear from waking up and the children not being beside her.

"They’re in bed...don’t worry." Ephiny whispered as she nibbled on Blaise’s ear.

"Are you a little frisky darlin?" Blaise asked softly with a mischievous grin.

"Those boxer shorts on you are driving me wild." Ephiny purred with a chuckle in Blaise’s ear.

"Alright...I’ve had it with the jokes about my boxer shorts." Blaise answered with mock agitation as she rolled over and grabbed Ephiny pulling her over herself onto the floor as Ephiny laughed from Blaise’s playfulness.

Blaise looked into Ephiny’s sexy hazel eyes and slowly leaned down to kiss her soft, luscious lips. Ephiny’s heart skipped a beat as Blaise’s lips met hers. Blaise moved her tongue inside of Ephiny’s mouth for a long, wet, passionate kiss as Blaise poured her heart into that one kiss.

Blaise moved her hand up Ephiny’s side to her stomach up to her breast and began to gently caress her as her body heat rose from Ephiny’s reaction to her touch. "Make love to me you sexy, white boxer shorts with hearts wearing beast or lose me forever!" Ephiny teased softly with a smile.

"Maybe you should wear them seeing as how you like them so much." Blaise whispered in Ephiny’s ear as she ran her tongue along the contours of her ear igniting Ephiny’s fire within.

Ephiny swallowed hard and became more excited... "I said...I...aah...like them on you." She answered seductively as Blaise moved her hand under Ephiny’s bra to feel the softness of her breast. Blaise’s kiss moved down her neck as Ephiny caressed Blaise’s back with her hands thoroughly enjoying what her dark warrior was doing to her.

"That feels so good baby." Ephiny moaned as she gasped and her heart raced from the tenderness she felt from Blaise.

Blaise untied the bra Ephiny was wearing continuing her assault of kisses along Ephiny’s neck and moved the material to the floor. Blaise moved her kiss down Ephiny’s neck to her breast sliding her body down between Ephiny’s legs. Blaise’s kiss moved to Ephiny’s other breast as her tongue circled Ephiny’s erect nipple and Blaise slowly drew her nipple into her mouth. Blaise enjoyed the hardness of Ephiny’s nipple between her lips as she circled her nipple again with her tongue and began to gently suck her breast.

Ephiny moaned in pleasure from Blaise’s ministrations and ran her fingers through Blaise’s wavy, dark hair. Blaise slowly moved her hand down Ephiny’s body to untie her skirt. ‘If she only knew half of what she does to me with her touch and kiss.’ Ephiny thought as her heart raced faster with every gentle kiss and touch from Blaise.

Blaise loosened her skirt as Ephiny raised her body up and Blaise removed the garment so she could feel Ephiny’s naked body under her own and lowered herself back down onto her lover. "Blaise...baby." Ephiny whispered softly as her breathing became more erratic. Ephiny thought about how soft and caring Blaise’s touch was and how wonderful it made her feel when she kissed her.

Blaise ran her tongue to Ephiny’s other breast bringing the hardened nipple into her mouth and began to lightly suck the sensitive area. Blaise’s kiss traveled down Ephiny’s taut abdomen to her underwear and gathered one side of the material with her teeth pulling it down as far as she could slowly. She moved to the other side placing soft bites on Ephiny’s stomach just above her blonde curls while she caressed her breast with her hand as Ephiny lifted her pelvis in response to Blaise’s bites.

Blaise took the other side of the material in her teeth and pulled her underwear all the way off of Ephiny. Blaise climbed back on Ephiny with her underwear in her mouth making eye contact and tossed her head to the side releasing the underwear from her mouth. Blaise laughed along with Ephiny as she pressed her body down on her lover and began to kiss her passionately with Ephiny wrapping her arms around her strong warrior.

"Baby...I love to kiss your soft, sexy lips and to feel your body react to my kiss and my touch." Blaise whispered as she kissed Ephiny deeply again. Ephiny ran her hands up and down Blaise’s body then slid her hands under the waistband of Blaise’s sexy boxers. Ephiny moved the shorts down Blaise’s legs as Blaise raised up above her for easier access to remove the boxer shorts.

Ephiny slid down under Blaise placing soft kisses down her chest to her stomach as she finally removed the boxers and moved back under Blaise who lowered her body back down onto Ephiny. Ephiny slipped Blaise’s sports bra up and over her head and felt a rush of warmth flood her as Blaise’s hard nipples pressed against her naked body. "You feel so good against me Blaise." Ephiny whispered huskily as the fireplace crackled behind them.

Ephiny slid her hands down Blaise’s back softly resting them on her firm butt as Blaise nibbled on her neck. Blaise began to slowly rub her sex against Ephiny’s increasing the wetness between her legs. Ephiny’s body was covered in goose bumps from the feeling of gentleness and caring Blaise showered her with. Ephiny held Blaise’s sexy backside firmly; pulling Blaise's sex against her own as the feeling of Blaise’s wet mound against hers drove her wild.

"Aah...Ephiny you feel so good." Blaise moaned through her labored breathing. ‘I’ve never been with a woman who excites me as much as Ephiny. Her skin is so soft, she’s so sexy, she’s so caring, loving and she makes me feel as if I’m the only person that matters in this world every time she looks at me or touches me. I feel how much she loves me with every kiss, touch or look from those beautiful hazel eyes. Oh, by the gods, I love this woman with everything I have and then some.’ Blaise thought adoringly as she slid her tongue in Ephiny’s mouth kissing her in sweet slow motion as her sex became overexcited with desire for her Amazon lover.

"Hmmm...Blaise ...wait." Ephiny replied nervously as she broke the kiss as Blaise stopped and looked into her eyes with concern.

"Am I hurting you baby?" Blaise asked with confusion.

"No...you feel incredible...I was just wondering and I forgot to ask earlier...aah...I’m not going to get pregnant again am I?" Ephiny stammered nervously.

Blaise chuckled. "No, not unless I asked the gods to help." Blaise smiled to reassure Ephiny.

"You didn’t did you?" Ephiny asked slightly nervous. "Because I’m not ready for anymore children just yet." She asked hoping Blaise would not be mad that she didn’t want to have more children right now.

"No...sweetheart... I didn’t...besides, I would have asked you first." Blaise answered trying to reassure her wife as she leaned down and continued where they left off. Ephiny was relieved to hear that Blaise wasn’t mad at her.

Blaise moved her kiss slowly and softly down Ephiny’s body to her stomach and reached up to caress Ephiny’s breasts with both hands. "By the gods, Blaise...you’re driving me wild." Ephiny exclaimed as her heart raced faster. "Touch me baby." Ephiny moaned breathless as Blaise’s soft lips against her skin sent a tingling sensation straight to her core.

Blaise moved her kiss between Ephiny’s thighs then to her blond curls. "How about if I lick you instead?" Blaise asked seductively as she pressed her tongue against Ephiny’s swollen nub causing Ephiny to threw her head back and gasp breathless from Blaise’s tongue on her sex. Blaise ran her tongue up Ephiny’s engorged nub and back down to her moist opening and entered the warm recess to taste her Amazon lover.

"Oh, you taste so good Eph." Blaise replied sexily as she continued her ministrations with her tongue.

"Oh, Blaise...baby...it feels so good." Ephiny moaned as she moved her sex up and down against Blaise’s tongue as her arousal mounted. Blaise moved her tongue faster to match Ephiny’s movements with her hips and reached up to hold Ephiny’s hands as she intertwined her fingers around Blaise’s and squeezed them to let her know she was pleased with what she was doing as her climax drew near.

"Oh,...Blaise...honey...yes...yes!" Ephiny moaned as Blaise felt Ephiny’s muscles tighten and knew she was close to her peak and worked her tongue faster along her hard, wet clit. Ephiny squeezed Blaise’s hand tighter. "Aah!...Blaise!" Ephiny moaned louder gasping for air as she moved her hips up and let her orgasm take her over the edge for her lover to devour.

Ephiny let out a deep breath and relaxed her body as Blaise continued to suck her juices causing Ephiny’s body to shudder and release the remainder of her orgasm. Blaise took all of Ephiny’s sweet nectar she offered and Ephiny’s grip on Blaise’s hand eased. She placed soft kisses up along Ephiny’s body settling her body on her lover’s and snuggled her face against Ephiny’s neck.

No matter how many times Ephiny gave herself to Blaise it was as if it was the first time. Blaise thought about how special it made her feel for Ephiny to give herself so intimately. ‘Oh, I love her more and more every minute of the day. It’s so amazing loving her.’ Blaise thought as she felt her lover’s soft skin as she ran her hand up Ephiny’s side tracing small circles on the side of her breast.

Ephiny wrapped her arms around Blaise’s sweaty body. "Blaise you got pretty worked up huh?" Ephiny teased seductively.

"So did you...you’re so sweaty I keep falling off." Blaise answered with a laugh as she looked into her wife’s eyes. Ephiny brushed Blaise’s sweat soaked hair off of her face and gazed dreamily into her sexy blue eyes.

"You make me feel so wonderful baby. You have such a caring touch, soft lips and such a loving, sexy way about you that it makes my heart skip a beat every time and thank whatever god gave you to me...I love you." Ephiny adoringly replied as she ran her finger softly over Blaise’s lip and closed her eyes as Blaise’s lips met hers for a tender, sensual kiss.

Ephiny rolled on top of Blaise. "Now it’s my turn." Ephiny replied sexily with a smile and raised her eyebrow as she brushed her lips against Blaise’s just as Jordyn began to cry.

Blaise and Ephiny smiled at one another. "Timing huh?" Ephiny laughed. "But what about you Blaise?" She asked disappointedly as she lightly stroked her cheek with her thumb.

Blaise put her hands on Ephiny’s face and pulled her down for a tender kiss. " I had my orgasm with you baby." Blaise answered through her kiss as she deepened it sending a throbbing sensation straight to Ephiny’s sex.

"Whew!...You take my breath away!" Ephiny gasped through her kiss.

Blaise sat up with Ephiny in her lap never breaking their kiss as their passions ignited again. They broke their kiss breathless as Jordyn cried harder. "Hold that thought baby." Ephiny answered with a quick kiss before getting up to check on Jordyn.

Blaise watched Ephiny walk away to check on Jordyn and couldn’t help but stare at her sexy backside. She smiled appreciatively towards Ephiny’s beauty as she loved how her long blond curls draped down her sexy, tan, toned back. She loved to have Ephiny’s body wrapped tightly against her own to feel her heartbeat and her softness, to hear her sexy voice call out her name and to lose herself in her beautiful hazel eyes. Blaise sighed lovingly as she leaned back against the chair and crossed her legs before resting her chin on her hand with her elbow resting on her leg.

‘How can I tell Ephiny that I betrayed her?’ Blaise thought with a heavy heart as the tears welled in her eyes. ‘How do I tell her that I killed a former lover because I couldn’t control my anger for the woman because she took the things that Ephiny had given me. How is she going to look at me from now on? Will it not matter to her or will she just think of me as being no different than my father...killing for spite. I was so stupid to let my emotions get the best of me when I killed Magdalene.’ Blaise berated herself. ‘But I felt like she was taking my only connection to Ephiny away and that she degraded my love for her by wearing those things. That’s no excuse Blaise. You just need to tell Ephiny or this is going to eat at you until it drives a wedge between you both.’ Blaise told herself as she was snapped out of her thoughts by Ephiny who spoke to her.

Blaise looked up confused as Ephiny stood before her straddling her legs. "I’m sorry...did you say something?" Blaise asked with regret for not noticing Ephiny standing there.

"I said dinar for your thoughts babe...you look like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders or are you just doing an impression of Atlas?" Ephiny asked as she held out a dinar.

Blaise chuckled and took the dinar in Ephiny’s hand and pulled her down on her lap with Ephiny straddling her waist. Ephiny flipped her long hair back off her shoulders much to Blaise’s delight. "You know...when you do that it takes my breath away and renders me utterly speechless for a moment in time." Blaise replied softly with a smile as she wrapped her arms around Ephiny and hugged her tightly.

"That’s so sweet Blaise...you do the same thing to me when you look at me." She answered with a chuckle before kissing Blaise’s neck.

Blaise leaned back and stared lovingly at her as she tried to figure out how she was going to tell her. She pushed a stray hair off her face and kissed her lips lightly. "There’s something I need to talk to you about." Blaise answered as she gasped to catch her breath and to keep the tears that formed right where they were.

"Blaise...what’s going on?" Ephiny asked confused and with worry as she saw the conflict in Blaise’s blue eyes.

"I need to explain some things that happened when I was gone. I was in prison."

"By the gods, Blaise. That’s where you got all of those cuts and bruises from?" Ephiny asked with shock and hurt at the revelation.

"Yes, because I wouldn’t do what the person in charge wanted me to." Blaise answered as she wiped the sweat from her brow as she was nervous talking to her about it.

"Why didn’t you just do what they wanted Blaise? Would it have gotten you out of there?"

"No, they wanted me to aah...be with them...if you know what I mean?" Blaise stammered nervously.

"What? Who wanted you to do this?" Ephiny asked with growing agitation.

"A former lover." Blaise answered and saw the shock and hurt in Ephiny’s eyes.

"Hmmm...a former lover huh? And you didn’t do anything with this person?" Ephiny answered with hesitation and jealousy as her heart raced at the thought.

"Well...I kissed the woman when..." Blaise attempted to explain as she felt Ephiny start to move away from her. "No, please...let me explain...please." Blaise pleaded as she held Ephiny who had tears in her eyes. "I knew this would happen but I wanted you to know the truth. I had to kiss her to distract her from seeing Xena who was sneaking in to the prison to rescue me." Blaise explained as she felt Ephiny’s tension release. "I’m sorry baby...but I had to do it." Blaise answered regretfully as her blue eyes filled in tears. "I hope you can forgive me? I feel terribly guilty about it." Blaise asked looking into Ephiny’s eyes for understanding and forgiveness, which she found.

Ephiny ran her hands through Blaise’s hair and hugged her tightly as Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny holding her close. "I forgive you baby. Where is this woman so I can have a little conversation with her?" Ephiny asked with agitation towards the woman.

"She’s dead...I killed her." Blaise answered with regret as Ephiny sat back and looked into Blaise’s blue eyes.

"Why do you seem so regretful about killing her? Did you feel something for this woman Blaise?" Ephiny asked wondering why it would bother Blaise for killing her.

"I felt nothing but hate for her Eph. I feel regretful because I didn’t have to kill her I could have just pushed her aside and left the cell but I slit her throat instead." Blaise answered with remorse as she thought back to what she had done.

"What made you do it then?"

"She took everything you gave me and wore it. It made me feel as though she took you away from me and it disgusted me to know that she wore them. It made me feel like she violated our love for one another and I lost it. I was consumed with hate, guilt and anger so, I killed her and I’m worried that you won’t see me for the same person that I am but someone who is no better than my father." Blaise answered with regret as she looked down.

"Blaise...I don’t see you as your father and I never have nor will I ever. You did something that you felt in your heart was right and I probably would have done the same thing. Sometimes our emotions get the best of us and we do things that we regret. You have to find it within yourself to not feel so bad about it. I would worry if you weren’t remorseful about killing her. I love you no matter what and you know that. My opinion of you will never change baby." Ephiny answered reassuringly as she held Blaise close to her and kissed her cheek.

"My father put her up to capturing me and holding me there. She was suppose to kill me but she didn’t because she was still in love with me." Blaise explained with sadness that her own father would want to do something like that to his own child.

"Gods! Why?" Ephiny asked with a stunned look on her face.

"He wants to take Chayce as his heir and Jordyn as his spare and eliminate me entirely." Blaise answered with disgust at the thought of her father controlling her children.

"That bastard is not taking our children Blaise!...I’ll kill him myself before he does that!" Ephiny answered with anger and fire in her eyes.

"No, he won’t do anything to the children baby...he’s not in a position to do anything right now. He is being punished by the Gods at Olympus but just the same we need to make sure there is someone with the kids at all times. If he does anything to them or you I will fulfill my promise I made to him and kill him if he harmed anyone close to me."

"You told him that?" Ephiny answered with disbelief and a slight smile at the thought of Ares being eliminated as the God of War.

"I threatened him with that and I told him I would make Joxer the next God of War." Blaise answered with a laugh, which was shared by Ephiny.

"That is so funny!" Ephiny answered as she laughed harder.

"It was...you should have seen his face!" Blaise laughed harder at the memory.

"Honey...I’m so sorry you have to have such a terrible father because you are so sweet, caring and wonderful." Ephiny replied as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s hair.

"I love you so much Eph." Blaise whispered as she embraced her tighter and kissed her shoulder.

"I love you as well Blaise and never doubt that...please?" She answered as she looked at Blaise.

"Never." Blaise answered with a smile as she kissed Ephiny passionately. "I missed you and the kids so much. It hurt so bad to be away from you honey. You and the kids are everything that’s good in my life and without you there would be no blue sky in my world...only darkness." Blaise confessed as she stared into Ephiny’s eyes lovingly.

"I feel the same way Blaise you are my world, heart and soul." Ephiny answered sealing it with a passionate and loving kiss. "It was weird but when you were gone I felt your pain...I don’t know how but I did." Ephiny answered lovingly.

"That’s because we’re soulmates. Did you hear me call out to you?" Blaise asked with a smile.

"Yes, I did...it was just before you came back. I heard you say you were coming home and I felt totally at peace. I wasn’t so worried after that. I thought it was a dream." Ephiny answered slightly stunned that what she felt and heard was reality and not a dream.

"You are in all of my thoughts and dreams Eph. You have made all of my dreams come true. I can’t express how much you mean to me...how much our children mean to me. It blows my mind that they are ours. It’s totally awesome that we created two beautiful children...well...with the help of the gods...but they are from our love for one another. That is so incredible." Blaise answered with a proud and adoring smile as she looked lovingly at Ephiny.

"I feel the same way Blaise and you made all of my dreams come true when you strutted cockily into this village and literally swept me off my feet." Ephiny answered with a chuckle remembering the first day she saw Blaise.

"I thought you liked how I walked. By the way, how did you twist your ankle in that hole?" Blaise teased with a laugh as she kissed Ephiny’s chin.

"I was trying to get a better look at you and didn’t see the hole." Ephiny answered with slight embarrassment and blushing as Blaise laughed. "Blaise... I like and love everything about you baby." Ephiny answered seductively as she pressed her lips against Blaise’s for a searing kiss. "You did clean your mouth after you kissed that wretched woman didn’t you?" Ephiny teased.

"Well...after becoming physically ill...I nearly used all of the water in the lake trying to clean my mouth." Blaise answered with a laugh before kissing Ephiny again.

"Aah...Blaise...I wanted to tell you." Ephiny tried to explain but was interrupted by Blaise.

"How sexy I am and how much you can’t resist my fatal charms?" Blaise teased cockiness as she assaulted Ephiny’s neck with soft bites and getting a laugh out of Ephiny.

Ephiny tried to calm her erratic breathing from Blaise’s bombardment of kisses on her neck so, she could say what she wanted to tell Blaise. "Blaise...stop I need to tell you about Chayce." Ephiny answered as she pulled away from Blaise who laughed.

"I know...he’s crying. I’ll go get him." Blaise answered as she lifted Ephiny up and put her in the chair before kissing her and walking away.

‘That’s not what I had in mind. Gods! There is just never a right time to tell her.’ Ephiny thought regretfully for not telling Blaise about how the Amazons wouldn’t except Chayce as an equal in their village.

Blaise approached the cribs and rubbed Chayce’s back to calm his whimpering as she lovingly stared at him. He settled after a few minutes when Jordyn began to cry and sat up in her crib. "Hey, princess...what’s wrong? Are you trying to wake everyone in the village? Mommie and Auntie Gabrielle won’t be very happy with you waking up their sleepy warriors." Blaise teased in a soft tone as she picked Jordyn up holding her close to her chest.

Jordyn settled her face against Blaise’s neck and laid her head against her shoulder as her cries turned to a soft whimper. Ephiny watched the two together as her heart was filled with joy at the sight of her strong wife and her daughter cuddling.

"Ssh...it’s okay baby." Blaise replied softly as she rubbed her back gently and headed to the bed. "What?" Blaise asked as she saw Ephiny watching her and Jordyn with a smile.

"I was just thinking about how happy I am and how gorgeous the two of you look together." Ephiny answered adoringly with a loving smile.

Blaise lay back on the bed as Jordyn clung tightly to her with her arms around Blaise’s neck. Ephiny lay on her side and moved closer to Blaise as she covered them with a blanket. Ephiny put her hand on Jordyn’s head and softly played with her hair as Jordyn closed her eyes. Ephiny laughed. "What’s so funny Eph?" Blaise asked as she turned her head to face Ephiny.

"It’s so adorable." Ephiny answered with a smile and adoration. " Jordyn is rubbing your hair between her cute little fingers just like she did when she was first born." Ephiny answered as she softly kissed her tiny hand.

"She takes after mommie who likes to play with my hair." Blaise answered with a smile as she softly rubbed Jordyn’s back as Ephiny gazed lovingly into Blaise’s blue eyes.

"I love you Blaise." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise and lay her head against her shoulder. Ephiny slid her hand on Blaise ,'s which rested on Jordyn’s back.

"I love you Eph...thank you for having such beautiful children." Blaise answered appreciatively as she kissed her forehead.

"You helped produce these children too baby." Ephiny answered as she squeezed Blaise’s hand.

"I love you Jordyn and Chayce." Blaise whispered as she kissed her daughter softly on her head and closed her eyes feeling as though she was the happiest woman in the world.

Blaise felt Ephiny stir and had a feeling someone was watching her as she slept. Blaise opened one eye to catch Jordyn looking at her and smiled as Jordyn giggled and hid her face. Blaise could feel Jordyn’s hand up behind her neck playing with her hair. Blaise closed her eyes and pretended to sleep as Jordyn looked back up at Blaise. Blaise opened her eye again causing Jordyn to giggle harder and hide her face again.

"Is my little princess trying to wake me up?" Blaise asked softly as she picked Jordyn up and held her above her. "Is that what you’re doing?" Blaise asked in baby talk as she rocked her side to side in both of her hands to the delight of Jordyn who giggled.

Blaise lowered Jordyn down to her and put a raspberry on her belly as Jordyn squealed with excitement. Blaise laughed as she watched her daughter laugh and wiggle. Blaise lowered her again placing another raspberry on her belly eliciting the same response as the two laughed at one another hysterically.

Ephiny watched the two play and felt an overwhelming amount of joy and tears filled her eyes as a big smile swept across her face. ‘I’m the luckiest woman in the world to have such beautiful children and such a loving wife.’ Ephiny thought to herself.

"Have you had enough or do you want more?" Blaise teased with a big smile as Jordyn giggled and nodded no as her blond curls dangled in her face. "No...no more?" Blaise laughed as she lowered Jordyn to her chest. Jordyn put her finger on Blaise’s lips as Blaise kissed her tiny finger. Jordyn put her tiny hands on each side of Blaise’s face and lowered her lips to Blaise’s for a baby kiss by just holding her lips against Blaise’s.

Blaise was consumed with pride and happiness by her daughter’s gesture of love as tears formed in her eyes. Blaise looked into those familiar hazel eyes which both Jordyn and Ephiny both possessed and saw unconditional love in them. Blaise pushed her curls back to kiss her forehead as she hugged Jordyn. "Eph...did you see that? She kissed me!" Blaise exclaimed with joy as Ephiny approached the bed.

"Yes...honey, I saw it and it was so precious." Ephiny answered with a smile as she stroked Jordyn’s head and leaned down to kiss Blaise. "Let me get her ready and you get your son up who has your sleeping habits of sleeping in late." Ephiny answered with a wink.

"Go with mommie to get dressed." Blaise told Jordyn softly with a smile as she handed her to Ephiny and sat up.

Blaise ran her hand through her disheveled black, wavy hair before throwing her tunic on and moved over to her son’s crib to wake him. She watched Chayce sleep peacefully and wiped his sweaty black hair off his face. Blaise smiled with happiness as she looked at her spitting image asleep in the crib on his tummy the same way she loves to sleep.

Blaise rubbed his back softly to wake her son who opened his eyes and rolled on his back locking blues with blues.

"Hey, buddy." Blaise replied softly as she leaned her chin on her hand that rested on the crib railing. "How’s my little warrior this morning? You ready to go see grandma?" Blaise asked in baby talk with a smile.

Chayce smiled and reached his hands up to Blaise who picked him up out of the crib. Blaise leaned her still sleepy son on her shoulder as he snuggled his face against her neck and she could feel his soft breath against her skin. Chayce wrapped his arms around Blaise’s neck and like his sister...twirled Blaise’s hair in his tiny hands. Blaise smiled and kissed his little arm softly as she rubbed his back. Blaise took him over to the changing table where Ephiny finished changing Jordyn.

"So, my little man is finally awake huh?" Ephiny asked with a smile as she kissed Chayce’s arm.

"Yep and he needs to be changed." Blaise exclaimed with a scrunched up face from the smell of his diaper.

"Well, honey...knock yourself out...it’s your turn." Ephiny winked and smiled as she picked Jordyn up. "Let’s get you something to eat." She replied as she smiled at Jordyn.

"No prob...I’ve got many skills and diaper changing is one of them." Blaise answered as she gently lay Chayce down on the changing table. "Nothing to worry about little buddy...I used to change your cousin Bliss’ diapers all the time." Blaise smiled as she opened his diaper. "Pee...u!...you stink!" Blaise teased as Chayce got a funny look on his face and Blaise’s demeanor changed at what she thought he had in mind. "Don’t you do it!" Blaise replied before he doused his mom and laughed.

Ephiny and Blaise laughed as she wiped herself off. "He loves to do that." Ephiny answered and laughed harder.

"What’s up with that?" Blaise asked as she tickled him. "Your sister kisses me and you pee on me!" Blaise answered as Chayce giggled from her tickling. Blaise finished cleaning and dressing Chayce, then handed him to Ephiny for breakfast so she could dress. Blaise gathered Ephiny up in her arms for a kiss. "Thanks for packing and getting everything ready." She replied with appreciation.

"Well...the three of you looked so cute that I didn’t want to wake you last night." She answered with a sexy smile as she enjoyed being in Blaise’s strong arms.

"I owe you something special then." Blaise answered with a smile.

"No...you don’t owe me anything...a kiss would be nice though." Ephiny answered with a smile as Blaise kissed her deeply when a knock on the door came.

"I bet that’s Auntie Xena!" Blaise replied with a smile as the twins squealed and kicked their feet with excitement.

"Come in!" Ephiny shouted as Blaise captured her lips for another kiss.

"Good morning!" She replied as she entered the hut. "Ephiny! Unhand my sister you sex crazed Amazon! Don’t you ever get enough?" Xena teased as she approached the pair who laughed. "How are my two favorite little people?" Xena exclaimed as she approached the twins and kissed them as they giggled before gathering them up in her arms. "Are you two ready?" she asked as she turned around with a smile as the kids had their heads laying on each of her shoulders.

"Yep...how about Gabrielle?" Blaise asked as she walked over to the bed and grabbed her sword, which rested next to it.

"She’s sleeping standing up against our horse. You know she’s not a morning person and she never misses an opportunity for extra sleep." Xena teased with a laugh at her sleepy pregnant wife.

"I see the boxers went over as expected last night. I thought Gabrielle might go into labor laughing so hard." Ephiny whispered to Xena with a sarcastic grin.

"Yeah but you don’t know what happened after she stopped laughing." Xena answered with a mischievous grin and a wiggle of her dark eyebrows as she headed towards the door leaving Ephiny laughing. "Let’s go wake up Auntie Gabrielle." Xena replied in baby talk as the twins giggled.

Ephiny and Blaise gathered their things and left the hut to find the twins hugging Gabrielle.

"Hey, Xena...when’s Argo due?" Blaise asked as she approached Taz.

"Very soon...I hope she doesn’t go into labor while I’m gone." Xena answered as she handed Jordyn to Ephiny after she mounted her horse.

Joxer took their things and helped strap them on their horses. "Dude...how are you this morning?" Blaise asked with a smile and patted him on the back.

"I’m doing okay." He answered with little enthusiasm.

"What’s wrong?" Blaise asked with concern as she helped him tie the bag down.

"Aah...it’s just that everyone has someone to be with and I’m alone. I would like to be with someone." Joxer answered with sadness.

"Why don’t you send Meg a message and see if she can meet us in Amphibolis?" Blaise answered as she looked at her friend with concern.

"I’ve sent her a few but I haven’t heard anything from her."

"Well...hang in their dude...maybe the woman of your dreams is in Amphibolis." Blaise answered confidently as she patted his back.

"Let’s hope so." He answered with a smile as he watched Blaise mount Taz. Gabrielle handed Chayce to Blaise who put him in her lap as he patted Taz's mane who whinnied in response getting a laugh out of Chayce.

Blaise threw her cloak over her shoulders and put her hood up due to the chilly morning air. She did the same with Chayce’s cloak as did Ephiny with Jordyn.

Epinon approached the group who prepared to leave. "Have a safe trip my Queen." She replied with a nod to Gabrielle and a wink knowing Gabrielle didn’t like her being so formal amongst family. "I would feel better if you would allow me to send some royal guards with you." She replied with concern for her Queen and her Regent.

"We’ll be fine with these two with us." Gabrielle answered as she pointed to Xena and Blaise.

"That’s what I was worried about." Epinon teased with a laugh which was shared by the group.

"What is she trying to say Xena? That we’re bad influences on these ladies?" Blaise teased as Xena laughed and Epinon flashed a smile to Blaise with a wink to let her know she wasn’t serious.

"You’re in charge now Epinon and don’t hesitate to send word if there is trouble." Gabrielle instructed her.

"I will if there is trouble my queen...have an enjoyable time."

"We will...thank you." Gabrielle answered with a smile as she wrapped her arms around Xena who turned her horse to leave the village followed by the rest of the group.

"You know Xena when the baby gets bigger I’m gonna have to ride in the front." Gabrielle replied as she leaned up to Xena’s ear and kissed her cheek.

"That’s fine with me because I love having you in my arms." Xena answered with a smile as she glanced over her shoulder at Gabrielle.

Chayce continued to amuse himself by playing with Taz’s mane. "Can you say Taz?" Blaise asked in baby talk as Chayce looked up at Blaise confused and put his finger to his mouth while he thought about what Blaise asked.

"Taz...can you say Taz?" Blaise asked again with a smile as Chayce turned and patted Taz. "That’s right can you say his name?" Blaise asked with a proud smile. Chayce looked back at Blaise and giggled as Blaise laughed. "How about boo!" Blaise asked as she put her face close to Chayce’s making him giggle. "Come on little dude...can you say it?" Blaise asked trying to coax him to speak as Chayce put his finger to Blaise’s lips and she kissed it causing him to giggle more.

Ephiny watched their interaction and laughed as she tried to contain Jordyn who wiggled in her lap. "Hey, missy...where are you going?" Ephiny asked sweetly as Jordyn pointed to Blaise and Chayce.

"Okay...how about this?" Blaise asked as she covered her face with the hood and opened it quickly. "Boo!" She exclaimed with a smile as Chayce giggled.

Blaise repeated the gesture a few times as Chayce looked at her. "Boo!" He replied with a laugh. Blaise felt her heart stop as the tears welled in her eyes from astonishment and pride from her son’s first word as a big smile consumed her face.

"That’s right Chay!" Blaise answered as she hugged and kissed him.

"Eph...did you hear him?" Blaise asked as she turned to her with excitement and a proud smile.

"Yes...I heard it...good boy." Ephiny answered with a smile and excitement as she looked at Chayce.

Blaise turned to look at Chayce again. "Can you say mommie?" Blaise asked as Chayce looked at Ephiny and pointed.

"That’s right pumpkin." Ephiny answered as she maneuvered her horse closer and kissed his hand with a smile.

"Can you say mommie?" Blaise asked in baby talk.

"Ma." He replied as he struggled to form his words. "Boo...ma." He spoke and pointed at Blaise.

Blaise was overwhelmed and stunned by her emotions that flooded her when her son spoke two words together. "Is that me?" Blaise asked with a smile as she pointed to herself. "Am I Booma?"

He climbed up in Blaise’s arms as blue eyes met blues. "Booma!" He replied with a giggle as he hugged Blaise’s neck.

"Hey!... I’m Booma!" Blaise exclaimed with excitement as she hugged her son tightly and kissed him with Ephiny looking on adoringly with cloudy hazel eyes from the joyous occasion.

Jordyn became restless and continued to wiggle in Ephiny’s arms. "Blaise...you need to take her she’s jealous." Ephiny replied as she handed her squirming daughter to Blaise who pulled her into her arms.

"Is my little princess jealous?" Blaise asked in baby talk as she kissed her beautiful daughter on the cheek.

Xena and Gabrielle looked on with pride and admiration as she moved her horse closer to Taz. "How in Tartarus is he talking so young?" Xena asked as she stroked his black hair softly.

"Well...father said I started to speak at their age so, maybe that’ s why." Blaise answered as she looked at him amazed.

"Yeah and you haven’t stopped since!" Xena teased. "Can you say Auntie Xena?" She asked as she leaned closer to Chayce who giggled and pushed her face away as everyone laughed. "Okay it’s a hard word to pronounce but maybe in another month you’ll be able to do it." She teased with a smile.

"How about you princess? Can you say Booma?" Blaise asked as she looked into those familiar hazel eyes that she loved so much.

"Boo!" She giggled and squirmed in Blaise’s arms and put her forehead against Blaise’s cheek.

Blaise looked up at Ephiny with a smile. "That’s incredible. I can’t believe it!" Blaise replied as Chayce laughed at Xena’s funny faces she was making at him.

"Well...Blaise...you and your children are part gods so, they will grow and do things faster than mortals." Gabrielle answered with a smile as she tickled Chayce.

"Come here buddy." Xena replied clapping her hands together and reached out for Chayce. "Come see your auntie’s." She replied as Chayce reached out for Xena who picked him up in her arms as Gabrielle looked over her shoulder with a smile at him.

"He’s so adorable Xena." Gabrielle gushed with a smile as she looked at her nephew.

"Absolutely...I can’t get over how early he’s talking either." Xena answered with sadness as her body became tense.

"What’s wrong Xena?" Gabrielle asked with concern as she felt the change in her demeanor.

"I just thought about Solan and how I never got to hear him say his first words or when he took his first steps." She answered sadly as she held Chayce in her arms and looked lovingly at him.

Gabrielle wrapped her arms around Xena tighter and kissed her cheek. "I’m sorry honey." She whispered in her ear.

Xena looked back over her shoulder at her bard. "Gabrielle...I don’t want to miss our child’s first words or first steps. I have a chance to experience those things and I don’t want to miss anything." She replied with sincerity and excitement at the thought of sharing those moments with Gabrielle and their child.

"We’ll have to make sure that you don’t now won’t we." Gabrielle answered with a reassuring smile followed by a kiss.

Blaise picked Jordyn up and held her out in front of her. She rocked her back and forth as she giggled. "Eph...she has your beautiful smile." Blaise replied adoringly as she glanced over to her wife who smiled and leaned over for a kiss.

"Booma!" Jordyn exclaimed as she wedged between Ephiny and Blaise hugging her effectively blocking the kiss.

Blaise and Ephiny laughed with astonishment as their daughter spoke her first words as well. "I guess she doesn’t want her brother to out do her." Blaise answered with a laugh.

"You don’t want mommie kissing Booma?" Ephiny asked with a laugh finding it weird to call Blaise that.

Jordyn shook her head no and squeezed Blaise tighter around the neck. Blaise laughed and looked at Ephiny with a mischievous grin. "See honey all chicks dig me...even the children." Blaise teased with a sexy smile and a wink.

"Oh, by the gods Blaise...you are so incorrigible." Ephiny answered as she rolled her eyes.

"What do you think huh?" Blaise asked Jordyn as she held her out in front of her who giggled. "I think you’re going to be a little heartbreaker." Blaise answered in baby talk as she pulled Jordyn to her face and blew a raspberry on her belly causing Jordyn to squeal with laughter and kick her legs. Blaise pushed her back out and laughed. "The chicks are going to dig you too huh?" Blaise asked sweetly as she put another raspberry on her tummy but this time Jordyn slid her tiny hands under Blaise’s hood grabbing a handful of black hair.

"Ow!...okay let go baby." Blaise pleaded as Jordyn laughed. "Aah...Eph can you help?"

"What’s the deal future God of War? Can’t handle a little baby?" Xena teased as Chayce grabbed a handful of hers. "Ow! What is this wonder twin powers or something?" Xena asked slightly embarrassed as she tried to pry his tiny fingers loose from her hair as Chayce giggled.

"Right back at you Warrior Princess!" Blaise teased as Ephiny worked to loosen Jordyn’s grip.

"Gabrielle...can you get his hands?" Xena asked as she struggled to hold him and loosen his grip on her hair.

Gabrielle laughed. "I thought you had many skills." She teased as she laughed harder and began to pry Chayce’s fingers away from her hair.

"Very funny...you should have been a comedian instead of a bard." Xena replied dryly.

"She sure takes after you with not liking raspberry’s." Blaise answered as Ephiny finally released her grip on Blaise’s hair.

"I’ll have to remember pulling hair is the key to make you stop." Ephiny answered with a smile. "You okay over there Xena?’ She asked as she noticed Gabrielle finally prying Chayce’s hand loose. Blaise laughed and stuck her tongue out at Xena receiving a swat in the arm from Ephiny. "Not in front of the children Blaise...I don’t want them picking up your bad habits." Ephiny replied with a smile to let her know she wasn’t too mad at her.

"By the gods, my daughter and my wife beat me up today." Blaise teased as she sat Jordyn in front of her to take the reigns.

"Let’s get moving on or we’ll never get there." Xena answered as she handed Chayce back to Ephiny.

The group heeled their horses to a slow gallop as the kids laughed with excitement. "Oh, isn’t that such a sweet little family moment...not!" Ares replied sarcastically as he appeared and watched them head off in the distance. "Just wait Blaise...you won’t be the next God of War...your son will be and your daughter will be my new Goddess of retribution. I won’t make the mistake of letting Aphrodite get her hands on either of them like she did with you Blaise." He replied maliciously and let out his demonic laugh as he disappeared.

 

The group drew closer to Amphibolis and noticed a large crowd of people making their way into the village. "Xena...is the festival always this big?" Gabrielle asked with amazement.

 

"No...we usually only have local villagers who attend it and it’s never this big. I have no idea what’s going on." Xena answered skeptically and surprised as the group approached the crowd.

 

"Excuse me...where is everyone going?" Gabrielle asked one of the women of the group.

 

"To the festival!" They answered with excitement as they continued to walk towards Amphibolis.

 

"What’s so special about the festival that so many people are going to attend it?" Gabrielle asked inquisitively.

 

"We saw a scroll hanging in our village saying that the Warrior Princess and her sister...the future God of War would be appearing there." The woman answered excitedly.

 

"Oh, really?" Gabrielle and Ephiny exclaimed with sarcasm in unison as they looked at Blaise and Xena who were totally confused.

 

"Are you sure about that?" Blaise asked skeptically thinking the women were misinformed.

 

"We saw a flamboyant little man with a beard posting the scroll in our village and he said they would be part of the festivities."

 

Blaise and Xena looked at each other and replied simultaneously. "Salmoneus!"

 

"I didn’t realize so many people would flock to see them." Blaise asked teasingly for more information because of course, she was intrigued.

 

"Oh, by the gods...everyone is going nuts over seeing them especially that sexy future God of War!" The woman exclaimed with a giggle and excitement.

 

Blaise chuckled as the women didn’t recognize any in the group because they all had their hoods up from the cold weather. "So, everyone is going nuts over the future God of War huh?" Ephiny asked with jealousy and agitation as her eyebrow shot up at Blaise effectively replacing Blaise’s smile with a sheepish look knowing her wife was not pleased.

 

"Oh, yeah!...I hear she’s gorgeous." The woman replied with a gleam in her eye. "I’m gonna have to steal her away from her wife." The woman laughed with her friend as Ephiny went to say something but Blaise grabbed her arm and whispered in her ear.

 

"No...you’ll make it worse...they haven’t recognized us and if they do they will call everyone over here." Blaise replied as she could see the anger and jealousy in her fiery Amazon lover. "It’s okay." Blaise replied softly to calm her anger as Ephiny settled down when Blaise slipped her hand on Ephiny’s to steady her.

 

"I intend to steal the Warrior Princess away from her Amazon Queen too." The other woman boasted confidently with a laugh towards her friend.

 

"Hey!...what makes you think they would want either one of you?" Gabrielle asked with agitation drawing a snicker from Xena who quickly received a poke in the ribs.

 

"Once they get a kiss from me at the kissing booth they won’t want their wive’s anymore!" The woman laughed and hurried away from the group.

 

"Kissing booth?" Blaise asked perplexed.

 

"I’m gonna kill Salmoneus!" Xena answered with agitation.

 

"Not before we will!" Ephiny and Gabrielle exclaimed in angered unison.

 

The group headed into town with two very angry Amazon women hot on Salmoneus’ trail. "I feel bad for Salmoneus." Blaise chuckled.

 

"He deserves it." Xena snapped back with a devilish grin.

 

"Oh, I don’t know...a kissing booth sounds kind of fun." Blaise teased as Ephiny looked back with an angry look on her face. "Of course, if my beautiful bride is the one kissing

 

me." Blaise answered flashing her a sexy smile trying to soothe her ruffled Amazon feathers.

 

"That sexy little smile of yours isn’t going to work for you Blaise when you want a kiss from me later." Ephiny answered and gave Blaise a ‘if looks could kill’ look.

 

"Ooh, Jordyn...I see where you get your jealous streak from...your mommy." Blaise teased as she kissed her beautiful daughter’s head, who giggled and played contently with Taz’s mane as the group steered the horses towards Cyrene’s tavern.

 

Blaise dismounted with Jordyn in her arms and stretched her lanky, slender body after the long ride and tied Taz’s reigns to the post as Jordyn giggled at Taz who put his nose up to Jordyn’s small hand. "Let me guess Taz...you’re going to start obeying her now...right?" Blaise teased her horse as she pat his neck receiving a low whinny out of her stallion.

 

"My babies!" Cyrene shouted as she ran out of the tavern with excitement heading straight for Jordyn. "I had no idea you were coming...why didn’t you send word?...but I’m glad you are here so Grandma can spoil her gorgeous little grandchildren." Cyrene asked and gushed as she gathered Jordyn up in her arms. "Hey, sweetheart...come to Grandma." Cyrene cooed as she hugged and kissed Jordyn. "Where’s Grandma’s boy?...there he is!" She replied excitedly as she saw Chayce attempting to wiggle out of Ephiny’s strong arms as she dismounted her horse and tightened her grip on her little wiggleworm of a son.

 

Cyrene took Chayce from Ephiny and showered him with hugs and kisses as the twins both giggled happily. Blaise pushed her hood off her head. "It’s nice to see you too mother." Blaise teased sarcastically with a chuckle.

 

"Oh, honey...I’m sorry I was just so excited about seeing my grand babies I just lost all of my senses." Cyrene answered as she leaned up and kissed Blaise.

 

"Booma!" Chayce and Jordyn replied at the same time and pointed at Blaise.

 

"I didn’t know they’re talking now." Cyrene exclaimed with surprise and joy as she kissed their cheeks. "Booma?" She questioned bewildered as she looked back at Blaise.

 

"They just started on the trip over here and don’t ask....I’m not sure how they came up with that name mother." Blaise smiled proudly as she brushed Jordyn’s blond curls off her face.

 

"That’s amazing honey...they are so young and already talking." Cyrene replied with amazement.

 

"I guess from what Aphie told Eph I started speaking at their age as well. I guess it’s because they are part god." Blaise explained.

 

"Now that I think about it Xena started to say her first words at about the same age." Cyrene answered as the memory of Xena as a child flooded her thoughts.

 

"Hello mother." Ephiny replied with a smile as she kissed Cyrene for a greeting.

 

"It’s so good to see you Ephiny...are you feeling better since these beautiful little children were born?" Cyrene asked with a smile as she rocked the twins in her arms.

 

"Pretty much back to top fighting form....thanks for asking." Ephiny answered with a gracious smile as she tied her horse to the railing.

 

"Mother." Xena replied huskily with a smile as she approached.

 

"There’s my other daughter...hi honey!" Cyrene answered with excitement as Xena leaned down for her mother to kiss her cheek.

 

"Don’t pull my hair either." Xena replied to Chayce with a laugh before receiving the kiss on her cheek from her mother as Chayce laughed.

 

"Where’s Gabrielle?" Cyrene asked as she attempted to look past her two tall daughters who obstructed her view.

 

"Here I am...just waddling up from the rear." Gabrielle teased with a smile as she kissed Cyrene.

 

"How do you feel honey?" Cyrene asked as she looked her over as Chayce and Jordyn were fascinated by their Grandmother’s necklace with the dangling charms on it.

 

"Very pregnant." Gabrielle answered with a laugh as they headed towards the tavern.

 

"I see that...is my daughter waiting on you hand and foot?" Cyrene asked as she raised her dark eyebrow towards Xena who flashed her a sarcastic grin.

 

"Actually...she’s been very supportive and yes...she has been fulfilling my every whim mother." Gabrielle smiled as she wrapped her hand in Xena’s as they walked ahead.

 

"Every whim huh?" Blaise asked with a sarcastic laugh as Xena turned and pointed at her sister giving her a warning look of keeping the comments to herself getting a chuckle out of Blaise in response.

 

"Joxer...will Meg be joining you here?" Cyrene asked as she looked over her shoulder at him as he brought up the rear amusing the twins by making funny faces.

 

"I’m not sure Cyrene...I sent word but I’m not sure if she will come here or not." Joxer answered disappointedly.

 

"Well...I hope she joins us." Cyrene answered as they all entered the house.

 

"Hey, you...come here." Blaise teased as she put her arms around Ephiny who tried to continue walking but couldn’t as Blaise held her back.

 

"Blaise...stop it...I’m mad at you." Ephiny answered agitatedly as she defiantly pushed Blaise’s hands off of her.

 

"Oh, baby...come on." Blaise whined with a pouty look on her face.

 

"No!...those bedroom eyes and that sexy smile of yours won’t work with me today." Ephiny answered sternly as she turned to walk away again.

 

Blaise wrapped her arms around Ephiny lifting her off the ground. "Are you sure it won’t work?" Blaise whispered seductively in Ephiny’s ear as she kissed her cheek. Ephiny knew she couldn’t resist Blaise’s fatal charms but struggled free and attempted to walk away again laughing to herself. "Ooh, you’re feisty...but I like it!" Blaise laughed as she ran in front of Ephiny.

 

"Blaise...don’t make me drop you!" Ephiny replied trying to keep a straight face as she pointed at her tall, dark, cocky soulmate.

 

"Oh, baby...drop me right here...I’m so turned on by your feisty attitude Eph." Blaise teased as she moved towards Ephiny who kept her head down to conceal her smile. Blaise lifted Ephiny’s chin up to look at her and laughed. "I knew it would work!"

 

"Ooh, you!" Ephiny pointed at Blaise with frustration as she began to laugh.

 

Blaise wrapped her arms around her wife. "Why are you so mad at me honey?" Blaise asked with a sexy smile.

 

"Because you love it when those women swoon all over you." Ephiny answered with agitation.

 

"Only when you swoon over me baby. I just find it very funny when people have that kind of a reaction." Blaise answered with a sly grin as she planted a kiss on Ephiny’s sexy, supple lips.

 

"You’re such a smooth talker aren’t you?" Ephiny asked with an adoring smile as she held Blaise’s face in her hands leaning in for a moist kiss.

 

"Your smooth talker baby...what do you say to a piggyback ride?" Blaise asked as she wiggled her dark eyebrows with a mischievous smile.

 

"You know I love those." Ephiny answered with a laugh as she tried to turn Blaise around to climb on her back. "Are you going to let me on?"

 

"No...I was talking about you giving me a ride." Blaise answered with a sly smile and a chuckle.

 

"Okay...come on." Ephiny answered as she crouched down for Blaise to climb on. Blaise hopped on and wrapped her arms around Ephiny’s neck resting her hands on her voluptuous breasts. "Blaise!...what are you doing?" Ephiny asked embarrassingly as she trudged towards the house with the heavy weight on her back.

 

"Oh, baby...I’m getting so hot for you." Blaise teased with a whisper in Ephiny’s ear driving Ephiny wild from Blaise’s hot breath in her ear.

 

"Blaise knock it off and get your sword out of my side!" Ephiny answered with agitation shaking off her mounting arousal the best she could as she moved her ear away from Blaise and struggled to hold Blaise who continued to try and whisper in her ear.

 

"You didn’t mind my sword there last night pumpkin." Blaise teased seductively as she kissed Ephiny’s neck.

 

"Blaise...don’t lean so far forward we’re going to fall!" Ephiny warned as she struggled to stand upright. "Blaise!" Ephiny shouted as they tumbled to the ground with Ephiny landing on Blaise who pulled her on top to break her fall.

 

"Ow!" Blaise exclaimed as they hit the ground and then began to laugh.

 

Ephiny turned and straddled Blaise on all fours. "Are you crazy?" She asked with a laugh as she looked down into the sexiest blue eyes she had ever seen.

 

"Crazy for you babe...but you hurt my lip honey." Blaise pouted as she stuck her lip out. "Kiss it and make it feel better from your head hitting it."

 

Ephiny laughed. "Aah...poor baby." Ephiny replied sarcastically as she sucked Blaise’s lip into her mouth before placing a playful bite on it.

 

 

 

"Ooh, you’re such a tease...but I like it." Blaise answered with a sexy smile as she suddenly became very sexually aroused.

"Payback for all those times you teased me my love." Ephiny answered as she ran her tongue across Blaise’s lips before kissing them and getting up quickly.

 

"Hey!...what’s the big idea?" Blaise teased as she rolled over and looked at Ephiny who laughed. "Come here my little Amazon Regent." Blaise taunted as she gestured with her finger for Ephiny to come back to her as a sly grin slipped across her face.

 

"Oh, no you don’t!" Ephiny laughed as she began to run towards Cyrene’s house that is attached to the tavern with Blaise in hot pursuit... both of them laughing hysterically.

 

Ephiny and Blaise burst through the door laughing with Blaise trying to keep her grip on her elusive wife as Ephiny pushed and tripped Blaise to get away from her causing Blaise to fall on the ground laughing. "What in tartarus are you two doing?" Gabrielle asked with disbelief as everyone looked on startled from the display.

 

Blaise rolled over on her stomach and looked at Ephiny who continued to laugh. "Keep laughing Eph." Blaise teased as she climbed to her feet while Ephiny hid behind Cyrene.

 

"Mother...you daughter is incorrigible." Ephiny replied with a laugh.

 

"Tell me something I don’t already know Ephiny." Cyrene answered with a laugh.

 

"You think you can hide behind my mother huh?...don’t think I won’t get a hold of her too." Blaise answered smiling wickedly as she approached the two.

 

"Now...Blaise." Cyrene replied as she pointed at Blaise while Ephiny made faces at Blaise over Cyrene’s shoulder as the two slowly backed away from the tall warrior.

 

"But mommy...she hurt my lip and then bit it!" Blaise whined teasingly as she drew closer to the pair as they laughed harder.

 

"I’m sure you probably deserved it!" Cyrene teased as Blaise wrapped her arms around the two squeezing them as they laughed harder with Gabrielle and Xena laughing at the scene that was taking place before them.

 

Gabrielle couldn’t help but notice the change in Ephiny that Blaise had brought out when the two of them met. She thought about how nice it was to see her Amazon Regent leading a happy life that wasn’t so consumed with her job duties as an Amazon. Gabrielle remembered how serious and intense...not to mention how jealous she was when they first met and she received the right of caste. She liked seeing Ephiny with a sense of humor, laughing and in love...it suited her well she thought happily for her friend.

 

"Blaise...I can’t breathe!" Cyrene laughed as Blaise kissed her cheek and let her loose. "As for you my sassy Amazon wife." Blaise laughed as she was finally able to get a good grip on Ephiny before licking the side of her face.

 

"Blaise!" Ephiny shouted as she slapped her arm and pulled away wiping her face as everyone laughed.

 

"There’s never a dull moment around those two." Xena replied with a chuckle as she shook her head in amazement at the pair.

 

Blaise turned to find Jordyn laughing and clapping as she sat on a blanket in front of the fireplace playing with the toys Grandma had given her. "Do you think that’s funny too my little princess?" Blaise asked in babytalk as she slowly approached the blanket with Jordyn squealing from laughter. Blaise lay prone on her elbows facing Jordyn as she did the same as her mother. "Are you going to be sassy like mommy?" Blaise asked in a sweet voice causing Jordyn to giggle as her familiar hazel eyes met Blaise’s blues.

 

"Ephiny...I can’t get over how much she looks like you." Cyrene observed fondly as she looked lovingly at her granddaughter and her daughter interacting with one another.

 

"She may look like me but she has Blaise’s personality already and gods help us with the two of them." Ephiny answered as everyone laughed.

 

Blaise and Jordyn had their legs bent up and crossed as they looked at each other smiling. "You’re gonna be a little heartbreaker...aren’t you?" Blaise asked as she gazed lovingly into her daughter’s excited eyes with joy and smiled proudly as Jordyn giggled. Blaise pushed her short, blond curls off her angelic little face. "You do know you’ve stolen my heart just like your brother and your mommy have done don’t you?" Blaise asked sweetly as she put her head against Jordyn’s forehead before kissing her nose.

 

"That’s so sweet." Cyrene replied as tears filled her blue eyes when she watched the pair lovingly and realized just how much she would have loved to have had the same interaction with Blaise as a child.

 

"It melts my heart when I see the two of them together." Ephiny answered adoringly as she too looked on at her family with a wide smile.

 

"Xena...I want us to have that kind of a relationship with our child." Gabrielle replied as she turned in Xena’s arms to face her.

 

"We will...I promise." Xena answered with a loving smile before capturing her bard’s lips with a kiss as Gabrielle wrapped her arms around her sexy warrior deepening the kiss.

 

"Hey, little one...what did you do with your brother?" Blaise asked as she tickled Jordyn who giggled and tried to get Blaise’s hand off her to stop the tickling.

"He went with Uncle Tarus and Joxer to do the man thing." Xena answered emphasizing the latter part in a deep voice mocking a man’s voice with a laugh.

 

"That should be interesting." Blaise laughed as she looked back over her shoulder with Jordyn using the opportunity to get back on her elbows as the tickling ceased.

 

"I’m taking my pregnant lady to get her settled...we’ll see you later for dinner." Xena replied as she laced her long fingers around Gabrielle’s and escorted her towards their room.

 

Blaise looked back at Jordyn. "Hey!...how’d you get back up here?" She asked teasingly with a laugh as Jordyn laughed and put her tiny hand in Blaise’s larger one. "Promise me sweetpea...that you won’t fall for a bum like me...try and find a wonderful person like your mommy." Blaise instructed her daughter lovingly as Jordyn put her mouth against Blaise’s cheek as a kiss. "You are a little heartbreaker...I knew it!" Blaise replied with a smile and complete joy as Ephiny lay next to Blaise placing her arm around her leaning her chin against Blaise’s shoulder.

 

"Honey...you’re not a bum...our daughter would be very lucky to find someone with your wonderful, loving personality to share her life with babe." Ephiny answered as she kissed Blaise on the cheek.

 

"Do you think so?" Blaise asked as she glanced over her shoulder at Ephiny with an excited smile.

 

"Absolutely...I wouldn’t want to share my life and love with anyone other than you." Ephiny answered softly with a smile as she kissed Blaise.

 

"Mommy!" Jordyn exclaimed with a smile as Blaise and Ephiny looked at her with astonishment before they both kissed her cheek happy about her speaking her second word.

 

"That’s right baby!" Ephiny exclaimed proudly with a huge smile as she held Jordyn in her arms and kissed her again.

 

"Mother...did you hear her?" Ephiny asked excitedly.

 

"Yes, the next thing you know she’s going to say Grandma... right?" Cyrene answered in babytalk as she leaned down and tickled Jordyn causing her to giggle and cuddle closer to Ephiny.

 

Blaise rolled onto her side and propped her head up in her hand taking in the moment with a loving smile as her free hand rested on the small of Ephiny’s back. Ephiny laughed as she looked at Jordyn and tucked her long curls behind her ear, which sent Blaise’s heart racing every time she did it. Ephiny looked at Blaise. "What’s that smile for Blaise?"

 

"I was just enjoying watching you two...you’re both absolutely gorgeous and I’m very lucky to have you both and Chayce in my life." Blaise answered adoringly with a loving smile as she ran her finger down Jordyn’s arm, feeling her babysoft skin.

 

"We wouldn’t want anyone else but you in our lives Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile before lightly kissing Blaise’s lips sending a loving warmth throughout Blaise.

 

"Hey, Blaise!...what in tartarus are you feeding this kid?" Tarus asked as he held Chayce out in front of him when he entered the house with Joxer who was holding his nose closed. Blaise and Ephiny turned to look and laughed from the looks on their faces. "Blaise...you need to change his diet...it’s brutal!" Tarus replied disgustedly as he held his breath to keep from smelling the fowl odor.

 

"Talk to Ephiny...she’s probably giving him mutton and yogurt." Blaise teased as Ephiny pinched her leg getting a laugh out of Blaise.

 

"Hey, what’s wrong with that?...I like that together." Ephiny answered as everyone laughed.

 

"Ephiny...that sounds as disgusting as how Chayce smells!" Tarus advised his sister-in-law who scrunched her face up mockingly at him who gestured for them to take his fowl smelling nephew from him.

 

"Oh, honey...it’s your turn to change his diaper." Blaise drawled with a smile as she scrunched her face in a smile at Ephiny mockingly.

 

"Of course, he waits until it’s my turn!" Ephiny answered disappointedly as she handed Jordyn to Blaise.

 

"That’s my boy!...I trained him well." Blaise teased cockily as Ephiny took Chayce from Tarus.

 

"Can you show me where our room will be Tarus?" Ephiny asked as she kissed her stinky son on the cheek.

 

"Sure...right this way." Tarus answered as he motioned for her to go down the hall.

 

"Joxer...I’ll meet you in the tavern." Tarus replied as he headed out of site.

Blaise lay on her back and lifted Jordyn up above her as she giggled with excitement. "Joxer...could you help me in the tavern?" Cyrene asked with a smile.

 

"Sure...Cyrene." He answered gladly.

 

"Give granny kisses goodbye Jordyn." Blaise replied holding Jordyn above her as Cyrene kissed her with Jordyn giggling excitedly.

 

"Bye sweetie." Cyrene answered with a smile as she ran her hand across her hair. "Okay...let’s go Joxer...aren’t my grandchildren the most beautiful kids you have ever seen?" Cyrene replied proudly as she looped her hand in Joxer’s arm before they left the house.

 

"It looks like it’s just us sweetpea." Blaise replied with a smile as she kissed Jordyn’s cheek and hugged her. Jordyn grabbed onto the handle of Blaise’s sword inquisitively. "No...no...honey." Blaise answered as she took Jordyn’s hand off her sword with Jordyn pouting disappointedly at not getting her way. "Aah...poor baby." Blaise teased with a smile as she tickled her cheek and stood up to remove her sword. Blaise took the sword and the scabbard and placed it on the mantle away from her baby before sitting back down leaning against the fireplace wall.

 

Blaise watched Jordyn play intently with her toys and smiled lovingly as to how much she looked like Ephiny. She had the same wild, blond curly hair, Ephiny’s smile that she loved so much and the beautiful hazel eyes that Blaise always lost herself in as she gazed into them. Jordyn held up a piece of stone and showed it to Blaise. "Where did you get that honey?" Blaise asked as she looked around and noticed it was missing from the stone fireplace.

 

"Here...let Booma have it baby." Blaise replied in babytalk as she held her hand out. Jordyn smiled and threw the stone at Blaise who thrust her head back to avoid the flying object which hit her above her eye as her head smashed against the stone wall with Blaise melting into darkness.

 

Jordyn giggled as Blaise slumped down to the side thinking she was playing with her. Jordyn crawled over to her and climbed on her lap with Blaise not responding to her child’s touch causing Jordyn to cry from fear.

 

Ephiny heard Jordyn cry and looked back to her task of redressing Chayce thinking Blaise would be able to handle it. Ephiny grew more worried as she heard Jordyn begin to wail. She noticed Xena step outside the door.

 

"Xena...could you finish dressing him while I check on Jordyn?" Ephiny asked with worry as Jordyn cried harder.

 

"Sure...but is the gross stuff cleaned up...we could smell it all the way in here." Xena teased with a curled up lip.

 

"Xena...come on I need to check on Jordyn!" Ephiny answered with worry and urgency.

 

"Go ahead." Xena replied as Ephiny ran to the front quarters of the house.

 

"Blaise...knock it off." Ephiny replied with agitation as she picked Jordyn up. "Hey, sweetheart...what’s wrong? Did Booma scare you?" Ephiny asked as she tried to comfort Jordyn who continued to cry. "Blaise...stop it you’re scaring Jordyn." Ephiny replied with agitation as she kicked Blaise’s foot noticing Jordyn had blood on her shirt. "Jordyn!" Ephiny exclaimed in horror as she frantically checked her daughter over for an injury.

 

"Ephiny...what’s wrong?" Cyrene asked with worry as she entered the room quickly after hearing Jordyn crying.

 

Ephiny looked at Blaise who had still not moved and put Jordyn down to check on her. Ephiny put Blaise’s face in her hands, which was hidden from her as she lay slumped to one side. "Blaise...Blaise." Ephiny replied with no response from her.

 

"What’s wrong with her Ephiny?" Cyrene asked nervously as she comforted Jordyn who continued to cry.

 

"I’m not sure." Ephiny answered with growing concern as she lifted Blaise’s head to find it was bleeding. "Blaise...honey...wake up you’re scaring me." Ephiny replied worriedly as she shook her with no response from Blaise.

 

"Hold on...try this." Cyrene answered as she grabbed a bottle from the table. "Have her smell this and see if it will wake her...it smells awful and helps with the drunks in the tavern." Cyrene explained as she handed the bottle to Ephiny who gave her a cross look regarding the comment about the drunks and comparing them to Blaise as Cyrene shrugged her shoulders apologetically knowing Ephiny wasn’t all too pleased with her comment.

 

Ephiny opened the bottle and passed it under Blaise’s nose a few times before Blaise slowly opened her eyes. "Blaise." Ephiny replied softly as she looked into her blank blue eyes as she sat her up straight.

 

Blaise blinked to shake off the fogginess. "Jordyn." Blaise whispered worriedly as she looked into Ephiny’s eyes.

 

"She’s okay honey...how about you?" Ephiny asked with concern as she held her steady.

 

Blaise tried to discern what was happening as she swallowed and closed her eyes attempting to fight the darkness that tried desperately to consume her once again.

 

"No...Blaise...wake up baby." Ephiny replied brushing Blaise’s hair back and noticed the cut above her eye as Blaise opened her eyes again.

 

"Eph." Blaise replied with a faint smile. "My head." Blaise answered softly as she reached back to feel the lump she had there. Blaise looked up at Jordyn and saw the blood on her shirt. "Jordyn!" Blaise exclaimed nervously as her heart raced with fear that she was hurt.

 

"She’s okay Blaise...it’s your blood honey." Ephiny reassured her with a smile.

 

Cyrene was unable to hold the squirming little girl who crawled onto Blaise’s lap. "Hey sweetpea." Blaise replied softly with a smile as she hugged her before wiping her tears away.

 

"Blaise...what happened?" Cyrene asked with wonderment and worry.

 

"Jordyn...aah...had a stone and she wailed it at me but what happened after that I’m not sure about." Blaise explained the best she could remember. Ephiny and Cyrene looked at Blaise in disbelief. "I’m serious...you should see her throw!" Blaise exclaimed seriously.

 

"Let me see your head." Ephiny asked as Blaise leaned forward. "Mother can you hand me a rag and some water please?" Ephiny asked as she parted Blaise’s dark hair.

 

"Hey, what happened?" Xena asked with confusion as she entered the room with Chayce.

 

"Here Ephiny." Cyrene replied as she handed her a towel and water.

 

"Jordyn hit me in the head with a stone." Blaise explained as Ephiny wet the towel.

 

 

Xena began to laugh. "That little tyke knocked you out?" Xena asked with laughter and disbelief.

 

Blaise gave Xena a stern and unhappy look. "Think that’s funny huh?" Blaise asked agitatedly.

 

"Well...yeah." Xena teased.

 

"She throws hard Xena!" Blaise answered with growing agitation and embarrassment. "At least I don’t put my son’s pants on backwards!" Blaise snapped as Xena looked down noticing she put Chayce’s pants on backwards.

 

Xena flashed an embarrassed smile. "Hey, why didn’t you tell me." Xena asked Chayce as she tickled his belly causing him to laugh.

 

Ephiny cleaned the scrape on the back of Blaise’s head. "Mother...I need to put a few stitches above her eye. Can you get a needle and thread for me...please?" Ephiny asked as she looked back at Cyrene who held a rag to Blaise’s wound to stop the bleeding.

 

"Sure...honey...I’ll be right back." Cyrene answered as she headed into the other room with Ephiny holding the rag over Blaise’s eye.

 

"You feel okay Blaise?" Ephiny asked with concern as Blaise held Jordyn in her arms who had fallen asleep content that her mother was okay.

 

"Not really Eph." Blaise answered as a wave of nausea swept over her turning her face pale. "Here....take Jordyn." Blaise replied hurriedly as she handed Jordyn to Ephiny and tried to stand but lost her balance and fell to the ground.

 

"Blaise!" Ephiny exclaimed as she reached to help her wife.

 

Blaise stayed on all fours fighting the nausea, dizziness with sweat dripping off of her as she fought to collect her bearings again. Ephiny gave Jordyn to Cyrene who entered the room again and moved to Blaise. "Come on baby." Ephiny replied softly as she tried to help her up.

 

"No!...let me do it myself." Blaise answered with embarrassment and anger as she stood up able to keep her balance this time. She wiped the sweat from her brow as everyone looked at her with concern. Blaise looked around at everyone. "Haven’t you ever seen someone who’s sick before?" Blaise asked with embarrassment and dismay

 

 

 

as she walked towards the door with determination not to fall again from her loss of balance and exited the house into the cool night air. Blaise took in the fresh air to calm her nausea before heading to the well for some cold water.

 

Blaise dipped the bucket into the water and retrieved it placing the bucket in front of her putting her hands into the water before splashing the cold water on her face. The water was a shock to her sweaty skin and took her breath away momentarily as a shiver ran up her spine. She put her hands on the side of the well for support from her unsteadiness and inhaled deeply a few times to settle the nausea.

 

Ephiny approached and put her arm around Blaise’s waist. "Are you okay baby?" Ephiny asked softly with concern as she looked up at her taller lover.

 

"Oh, yeah!" Blaise answered with agitation as she scooped water in her hand and rubbed it on her face.

 

"Blaise...there’s nothing to be embarrassed about ...we’re all family."

 

"Yeah...you are ...but it doesn’t mean everyone has to stare at me when it happens Eph." Blaise snapped as she glanced down at Ephiny wishing she didn’t say what she just did to Ephiny in that tone as she knew it wasn’t her fault...she was just trying to help.

 

"Hey!" Ephiny answered as she moved in front of Blaise who looked away with shame. "If I can give birth to two children in front of a room full of people than you shouldn’t have anything to worry about." Ephiny answered as she put her hands on Blaise’s face and turned her head to face her. "Where’s that sexy smile I love so much?...that secret one that you have only for me." Ephiny asked with a smile as Blaise glanced down at her then back off in the distance finding it hard to resist Ephiny’s charm. "Come on baby give me that smile." Ephiny teased as she kissed Blaise’s strong arm before looking back up at Blaise who found it entirely too hard to conceal her smile. "There it is honey!" Ephiny replied with a laugh as she kissed Blaise soundly. "Are you feeling better now?" Ephiny asked after breaking the kiss.

 

Blaise nodded her head. "Yeah...I’m better. How could I not with my very sexy wife kissing me?" Blaise answered with a sly grin.

 

"That’s very true my dear and I know how you can’t resist me...so, let’s go get you stitched up." Ephiny answered with a laugh before slipping her arm around Blaise’s waist and guiding her away from the well.

 

"Are you sure you know what you’re doing by putting the stitches on my beautiful face?" Blaise teased cockily and skeptically at her wife’s skills.

 

"My handy work is much better than Xena’s honey....plus, I give soothing kisses after each stitch." Ephiny answered seductively before kissing Blaise.

 

"I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited to get stitches." Blaise answered sexily before wrapping her arm around Ephiny as they entered the house.

 

Blaise sat at the table where Xena was playing with Chayce by bouncing him on her knee as Ephiny prepared the needle and thread. "Are you feeling better?" Xena asked with concern as she glanced over at Blaise who rested her head in her hands while leaning her elbows against the table.

 

"Yeah...a little bit." Blaise answered in a muffle through her hands as her nausea and dizziness subsided.

 

"Blaise..I’m sorry if I upset you with that crack I made...I didn’t think it would upset you so much." Xena replied awkwardly as she smiled at Chayce who giggled with excitement.

 

"It’s okay...I was just embarrassed but let me tell you something...Jordyn really has an arm!...she is going to make one serious javelin thrower when she gets older." Blaise chuckled proudly and with disbelief that her young daughter was able to throw the stone so hard.

 

"Well...that will go along nicely with this strong little guy here and what a duo they will make, isn’t that right buddy?" Xena answered in babytalk as she looked at Chayce for an answer.

 

"Booma!" Chayce responded as he pointed to Blaise with a smile.

 

"That’s right do you want to give Booma a hug?" Xena asked with a smile as she handed Chayce to Blaise finding it very strange calling her sister Booma.

 

"What’s my little warrior up to, huh?" Blaise asked as she kissed and hugged her handsome son who wrapped his arms around her neck.

 

"Blaise...you’re kids are so freaking adorable." Xena replied enthusiastically and with a proud smile.

 

"Did you expect anything less?" Blaise asked with a cocky smile.

 

Xena laughed at the remark wondering why she even went there with her comment knowing Blaise would come up with some arrogant comment as Ephiny approached to address Blaise’s wound. Xena thought about how she couldn’t wait for the opportunity to spoil and boast proudly of her and Gabrielle’s baby.

 

She wanted to know her child and be a part of it’s life as she was not that type of a mother to her son Solan...which she deeply regretted. Xena made a promise silently to herself that she would be a part of every aspect of their child’s life when Gabrielle told her she was pregnant...it was one of the happiest moments of her life she thought happily as she remembered the promise that she made."Where’s Gabrielle... Xena?" Blaise asked as she put Chayce on her knee out of Ephiny’s way.

 

"Doing her favorite thing in the world...sleeping." Xena responded with a laugh.

 

"That’s not what she told me was her favorite thing Xena." Ephiny answered sarcastically with a sly grin as she glanced over at the Warrior Princess.

 

Xena slapped Ephiny’s butt with a laugh. "Blaise...you’ve been a bad influence on this Amazon!" Xena answered as she stood up from the table.

Blaise and Ephiny laughed as Cyrene entered the room again. "Blaise...honey, are you feeling better?" She asked with concern as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s dark hair.

 

"Good for right now mother but we’ll see what happens when my wife stitches my wound." Blaise answered flashing Ephiny a sexy smile.

 

"Don’t be nervous honey." Ephiny smiled as she kissed her.

 

"That’s right Blaise don’t be such a little chicken!" Xena teased as she exited the room hearing Blaise chuckle at her retort.

 

"Here...let Grannie take her boy. I was finally able to get your sister back to sleep." Cyrene replied as she put her hands out for Chayce to crawl into.

Ephiny put the needle to Blaise’s forehead. "Mother...hold my hand." She teased as if she was afraid.

 

"Well...she’s back to her old self." Cyrene replied sarcastically as she made funny faces at her grandson to get him to laugh.

 

Blaise shifted her blues up to Ephiny’s hazels and lost herself in them as she always has before as Ephiny began to put the stitches in her wound. Ephiny stopped and checked on Blaise who stared into her eyes intently before Ephiny kissed her blue eyed lover and returned to her task.

 

"There Blaise...all finished and I did a better job than Xena." Ephiny replied proudly as

Blaise continued to gaze into her eyes. "Are you okay?...any pain?" Ephiny asked with concern as she broke Blaise’s trance.

 

"I never feel pain when I look in your eyes babe." Blaise answered with a loving smile as she gathered Ephiny into her arms for a hug.

 

"You are so suave Blaise." Ephiny answered with a smile as she wrapped her arms around Blaise’s neck and kissed her softly above her wound absolutely loving the cockiness and confidence her lover exuded.

 

"Come on you two...let’s get something to eat." Cyrene ordered as she carried Chayce towards the door before exiting the house for the tavern.

 

"In a few mother." Ephiny replied content right where she was...in Blaise’s arms and didn’t want to leave them just yet. Ephiny looked down at Blaise who had a very mischievous smile on her face. "What?" Ephiny asked suspicious of Blaise’s intentions.

 

"I was just wondering how I should tell mother that I already have something very delicious to eat right here in my arms." Blaise answered seductively with a sly smile.

 

"Blaise!" Ephiny exclaimed with surprise at her statement as she grabbed Blaise’s face with her hands. "You behave!" She answered with a chuckle as she looked into Blaise’s irresistible blue eyes.

 

"You never had problem with me not behaving before baby." Blaise whispered feeling very frisky as she kissed the exposed skin of Ephiny’s breast.

 

"Well...that’s true." Ephiny answered with a smile thoroughly enjoying the feeling of Blaise’s lips on her breast. "But, this is your mother’s home." She answered as she ran her fingers through Blaise’s dark hair.

 

"Yeah and I want to take you right here baby." Blaise answered as she moved her soft kiss to Ephiny’s other breast tightening her hold on her sexy Amazon Regent.

 

"Oh, baby...that sounds so enticing." Ephiny moaned in delight as Blaise nibbled on her soft breast.

 

"Don’t you two ever get enough?" Xena exclaimed as she led a very sleepy pregnant Amazon Queen into the room.

 

Ephiny flashed an embarrassed smile towards the pair as Gabrielle rubbed the sleep out of her eyes not looking to pleased about being out of bed. The only reason she agreed to get up was because it was time to eat. "From the sounds coming out of your hut every night it seems that neither of you can get enough either." Blaise answered as she

ran her tongue inside Ephiny’s bra with Ephiny grabbing a hand full of Blaise’s hair as she looked at Xena and Gabrielle attempting to maintain her composure hoping her desire for Blaise to take her right there didn’t show.

 

Blaise smiled mischievously as she felt how Ephiny’s body reacted to her kiss and knowing that Ephiny was slightly embarrassed by the way she gripped Blaise’s hair.

 

"Been taking notes Blaise?" Xena quipped as Gabrielle slapped her back in embarrassment before leaning her head against Xena’s shoulder.

 

Blaise squeezed Ephiny’s firm backside causing Ephiny to wince and gasp with excitement as she tried to maintain her composure which was quickly slipping away. "From the sounds of it Xena...seems the notes you took from us are helping your sex life tremendously." Blaise teased never turned around to face Xena as she sucked Ephiny’s breast causing her eyes to widen as the slickness between her legs increased.

 

"Okay you two...that’s enough." Gabrielle replied as she pinched Xena’s butt. "Let’s eat...Oh, Ephiny...Jordyn’s crying." Gabrielle answered as she heard her niece’s whimpers from the room.

 

"Let me go get Jordyn honey." Ephiny replied as she tapped Blaise’s shoulder.

 

"No, I’ll get her." Blaise whispered as she stood up and kissed Ephiny passionately. "While you contemplate what you’re missing out on." Blaise whispered flashing a seductive smile with a slap to Ephiny’s ass as she walked past Xena with a cocky swagger and a wink before exiting the room.

 

"Aah...Ephiny...you may want to breath sometime soon." Xena replied with a laugh as Ephiny exhaled the breath she subconsciously held and let out a chuckle.

 

"Come on...we’ll buy you a glass of water to cool you off." Gabrielle teased with a laugh as they all exited the house with Ephiny’s heart pounding with excitement from her tall, sexy, lover’s seductiveness.

"Hello beautiful!" Blaise exclaimed proudly looking down at her beautiful daughter who made her heart race every time she looked at her...just like her mommie does to Blaise.

"Booma!" Jordyn squealed delightedly struggling to get up.

"How’s my sweetpea?" Blaise asked sweetly picking her up and kissing her cheek.

Jordyn looked at Blaise with a smile. "Boo-boo!" She answered pointing to Blaise’s wound.

"That’s right baby...how’d you know that?" Blaise asked with a proud smile and kissed her cheek again. "I guess you’re growing up faster than we all expected. Before I know it my little girl’s going to be all grown up but you know what? You’ll always be my little girl even when you’re old and gray." Blaise answered sweetly and smiled proudly. Jordyn had a sad face and put her mouth against Blaise’s forehead for a kiss and looked back at Blaise with a smile. "It’s all better now...thank you. Let’s go get something to eat!" Blaise enthusiastically answered and headed out the door towards the tavern wiggling her daughter in her arms both laughing merrily.

Blaise entered to find the tavern jam-packed with people and scanned the room for her family. "Where’s mommie?" Blaise asked Jordyn who put a finger to her mouth and looked around as Cyrene caught sight of them and waved.

Ephiny stopped her candid conversation with Tarus when she noticed her tall lover stride confidently through the crowded tavern holding their child tightly and securely in her arms and smiled lovingly... her heart skipping a beat when Blaise’s blues met her hazel’s. Blaise noticed the people would smile and whisper amongst themselves once she passed giving her an uncomfortable feeling.

"Blaise!" Someone inquired as Blaise turned and looked down at the woman who replied.

"Yes." Blaise answered with an uneasy feeling and confusion as she didn’t know the woman.

"Oh, you are even better looking in person than everyone has told stories about." The woman answered in awe.

Blaise was angered at the audacity of the woman’s comment in front of her child. "I don’t think that’s appropriate conversation in front of my daughter and with my wife sitting two tables over from you." Blaise answered angrily as they both glanced over at Ephiny who couldn’t figure out what was going on. Jordyn snuggled her face against Blaise’s neck and wrapped her small arms tightly and possessively around her mother.

"She’s a very lucky woman and if you decide you want someone else... find me." She answered seductively and smiled. Blaise shook her head in disgust trying to control her anger choosing to walk away rather than stoop to the woman’s low level and respond to her. "Hmmm...nice ass too." The woman replied appreciatively giggling with Blaise fuming from the gaul of the woman to say such things in front of Jordyn. Blaise rubbed Jordyn’s back softly and kissed her cheek as Jordyn stayed comfortably snuggled against her.

Blaise finally made her way to the table and sat next to Ephiny with a look of disgust and anger as Tarus took Jordyn from Blaise. "How’s my little doodlebug?" He asked with a smile and kissed Jordyn who giggled.

"What’s wrong baby?" Ephiny whispered leaning closer to Blaise who kept her head down and shifted her eyes side to side noticing all the people staring at her. "Blaise?" Ephiny asked to get her attention and tucked her long hair behind her ear leaning even closer to her troubled wife.

"Are you feeling ill?" Ephiny asked with concern and held Blaise’s hand.

"No...just very uncomfortable with everyone staring at me." Blaise answered with agitation.

"Hey, you’re stunning babe...I had to do the same thing when you walked in here...don’t feel so bad they did the same thing to Xena. They aren’t used to seeing such high profile people around here honey." Ephiny answered trying to reassure Blaise. "Besides, I figured you’d love the chicks digging you anyway." Ephiny teased with Blaise looking into Ephiny’s eyes and flashed her a smirk at the comment before kissing her lips.

"I intend to stick Salmoneous in a well when I find him!"

"You’ll have to beat Xena to it though." Ephiny answered with a laugh and handed Blaise a mug of ale who drained half of it instantly.

"Are you trying to get me drunk and take advantage of me honey?" Blaise asked flashing a sexy smile quickly forgetting about the earlier situation that angered her. She leaned closer to Ephiny with her hand sliding up along Ephiny’s leg sending a tingling sensation throughout her body from Blaise’s tender touch.

"You know me so well don’t you sexy?" Ephiny teased lightly kissing Blaise wishing they were in bed locked in one another’s arms their bodies wrapped tightly against each other with their passions soaring.

"You should know me better than that darlin to know that I don’t need to be drunk for you to take advantage of me." Blaise answered teasingly through her kiss.

"Oh, I know that ...it’s just fun to see if you will get drunk." Ephiny laughed and kissed Blaise again.

"Hmmm...well, I’ve got some fun planned for you later this evening my sexy little Amazon Regent. But first, we must eat!" Blaise answered with a laugh.

"Ooh, I look forward to it." Ephiny teased back with a wink picking her utensils up to eat her meal.

Everyone was engaged in idle chitchat through dinner and Blaise looked around the table at the smiling and contented faces sitting with her. She thought about how this was the family life she had always hoped one day to have. Blaise smiled filled with happiness watching everyone and taking in their interaction with one another realizing she finally felt like she was part of a true family.

Ephiny slid her hand into Blaise’s and she turned to her Amazon lover flashing her a loving smile. "You okay?" Ephiny asked with concern squeezing Blaise’s hand.

"Never better." Blaise answered with a contented smile.

"Blaise, honey...will you go up and sing with the band?" Cyrene asked with a hopeful smile.

"Oh, nah...mother. I’m getting enough goofy looks from everyone as it is now." Blaise answered hesitantly looking around and noticing the crowd had thinned out she thought maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to sing.

"Please?...I love to hear you sing." Cyrene pleaded with a smile.

"Come on Blaise...you can do the song we worked on while we were on the road...I assume you finished your chorus to it? I finished the music for it." Joxer answered with excitement.

"Wait a minute." Xena interrupted. "You and Joxer did a song together?" Xena asked sarcastically and in disbelief.

"Yeah...why is that so hard to believe?" Blaise asked turning to her sister offended.

"Joxer?" Xena asked arching an eyebrow towards him in disbelief.

"Yeah... Joxer." Blaise replied sarcastically. "I wrote the song and he wrote the music for it." Blaise answered agitatedly at the fact that everyone treated him like a baffoon even though he had made a dramatic change for the better.

"Hmmm...very interesting." Xena answered suspicious of what kind of music Joxer would come up with for a song.

Blaise looked at Ephiny for assurance. "Do it baby...you know I love to hear you sing." Ephiny answered smiling excitedly and kissed Blaise’s cheek for assurance.

"Okay...Jox...give the band your music." Blaise relented looking towards Joxer.

"Yes!" Joxer exclaimed excitedly heading towards the band at an eager pace.

"I’ll go make the announcement." Cyrene replied with a proud smile handing Chayce to Ephiny.

Blaise kissed Chayce and headed towards the stage to join the band with Cyrene. "Here Blaise...I tuned it for you. You remember the chords right?" Joxer asked handing her a Lute to play.

"Yep and you grab the other one to play the lower notes for me dude." Blaise answered pointing to the other Lute.

"Really?" Joxer asked with excitement.

Yeah...you told me you took music lessons and it’s your music so grab it and let’s go. Besides, the chicks will be all over you." Blaise answered with a mischievous smile checking the strings on the Lute chuckling at the wide-eyed look Joxer flashed her from the comment about the chicks.

"I had no idea Blaise could play the Lute." Tarus replied with amazement.

"Did you know Ephiny?" Gabrielle asked equally surprised snuggling into a comfortable position against her warrior who wrapped her arms tightly around her pregnant wife and rested her hands over Gabrielle’s expanded abdomen.

"No...but, I realized awhile ago to never underestimate Blaise’s talents because she will definitely fool you." Ephiny answered with a laugh snuggling her son closer to her who was intrigued with the small feathers on his mom’s grieves.

"She’s definitely got more skills than I do." Xena answered with a chuckle.

"Hey, doodlebug...do you see your mom up there?" Tarus asked Jordyn in a sweet tone pointing at Blaise.

"Booma!" Jordyn answered with a smile pointing to Blaise and clapping her hands as everyone laughed.

"Looks like Blaise has another fan!" Tarus replied with a chuckle.

Blaise sat on a stool to the front of the band and looked over her shoulder at Joxer. "You ready dude?"

"Oh, yeah!" He answered smiling happily in all his glory.

"This is my youngest daughter Blaise who is an excellent singer and she’s agreed to sing a song for all our entertainment. Remember, I’m the only tavern in town so, no food throwing at her!" Cyrene warned teasingly with the crowd erupting in laughter.

Blaise put one foot up on the stool resting the Lute on her leg and looked up at the crowd. "As always...my songs are inspired by my beautiful wife Ephiny." Blaise announced smiling and making eye contact with Ephiny as the crowd all sighed happily from the statement. "I wrote this song when I was away from her and our beautiful children for a very long time. My buddy Joxer wrote the music for it...so, we hope you enjoy it." Blaise replied with a smile and looked down at the Lute and began to play a slow melody. Blaise strummed the Lute and looked up at Ephiny smiling and began to sing in a low tone:

Woke up to the sound of pouring rain

The wind would whisper and I’d think of you

And all the tears you cried that called my name

Ephiny thought back on the sadness she felt when Blaise would be gone and how many times she cried herself to sleep every night wishing Blaise was there to hold her and to make her feel safe.

The music speeds up:

AND WHEN YOU NEEDED ME I CAME THROUGH! (Blaise sang in a raised tone)

Ephiny smiled and held Chayce tighter staring intently at her sexy blue eyed lover.

Music slows:

I paint a picture of the days gone by

When love went blind and you would make me see

I’d stare a lifetime into your eyes

Blaise smiled locking her blue eyes with Ephiny’s hazel’s.

Music speeds up:

SO THAT I KNEW THAT YOU WERE THERE FOR ME

TIME AFTER TIME YOU WERE THERE FOR ME...E...E (Blaise drawled the note out singing in a louder tone)

REMEMBER YESTERDAY

WALKING HAND IN HAND

LOVE LETTERS IN THE SAND

I REMEMBER YOU

THROUGH THE SLEEPLESS NIGHTS AND THROUGH EVERY ENDLESS DAY

I’D WANNA HER YOU SAY

I RE...ME...M...BER YOU....WHOA...OH...WHOA...OH...WHOA (Blaise held the note)

Music slows:

We spent the summer wrapped in each other’s arms

Wished ever after would be like this

you said I love you babe without a sound

Blaise winked and smiled lovingly at Ephiny. Ephiny thought about how Blaise only needed to look at her without a word being spoken to know how much she loved her.

Music speeds up:

I SAID I’D GIVE MY LIFE FOR JUST ONE KISS

Blaise held up one finger denoting the one kiss and began playing again.

I’D LIVE FOR YOUR SMILE AND DIE FOR YOUR KISS!

Ephiny thought about how much she loved Blaise’s smile and one kiss from her rocked her to the core.

REMEMBER YESTERDAY

WALKING HAND IN HAND

LOVE LETTERS IN THE SAND

I REMEMBER YOU

AND THROUGH THE SLEEPLESS NIGHTS THROUGH EVERY ENDLESS DAY

I WANT TO HEAR YOU SAY

I RE...ME...M...BER YOU...WHOA

WE’VE HAD OUR SHARE OF HARD TIMES

Blaise glanced at Gabrielle who looked back at her in confusion with Xena’s eyes shifting to Gabrielle then back to Blaise knowing what she was referring to and not too pleased by it either.

BUT THAT’S THE PRICE WE PAID (Blaise’s voice reflected higher)

Ephiny knew that if she could read Blaise’s mind it would tell a tale of still not being able to forgive Gabrielle for interfering and for being responsible for Ephiny’s death.

AND THROUGH IT ALL WE KEPT THE PROMISE THAT WE MA...A...A...DE (Blaise sang louder holding the note)

Blaise held her hand up showing the ring Ephiny gave her at their joining with Ephiny reciprocating the gesture by kissing her own ring and smiling.

I SWEAR YOU’LL NEVER BE LONEL....LY. (Blaise belted out)

Blaise pointed at Ephiny to emphasize her point her voice trailing off carrying the note. Blaise stood up when the music picked up for a Lute instrumental and glanced over at Joxer with a smile and back down to the Lute to finish the chord. Blaise looked up and flipped her hair off her face and tilted her head back closing her eyes.

WHOA...OH...OH....OH...WHOA...OOHHHH...(carrying out the note)

The music slowed and Blaise slowly opened her blue eyes searching for her favorite hazel eyes she always manages to lose herself in and locked onto them when they met and softly sang.

Woke up to the sound of pouring rain

Washed away a dream of you

But nothing else could ever take you away

Blaise gave Gabrielle a quick glance with Ephiny remembering hearing Blaise’s desperate pleas to not leave her as she lay in darkness unable to break free and reunite with the love of her life ...eventually succumbing to the darkness. Ephiny realized exactly what Blaise meant in the song and that she hadn’t totally forgiven Gabrielle either for her part in her death despite how much she wanted too.

Music picks up with Blaise putting her hand to her heart smiling and singing louder.

CAUSE YOU’LL ALWAYS BE MY DREAM COME TRUE!

OH, MY DARLING...I LO...V...E....YOU!

Blaise moved her hand back to the Lute continuing to play with Ephiny searching Blaise’s eyes and saw what she was looking for...her life reflected there in that one moment. She no longer thought of herself as one but half of a whole. Without Blaise her life would hold very little meaning. Tears stung her eyes and she clutched her child to her breast. This child was part of that life and everything she had ever wanted or dreamed about began with this one woman she loved so much.

I REMEMBER YESTERDAY

WALKING HAND IN HAND

LOVE LETTERS IN THE SAND

I REMEMBER YOU

THROUGH THE SLEEPLESS NIGHTS THROUGH EVERY ENDLESS DAY

I’D WANNA HEAR YOU SAY

I RE...ME...M...BER..YOU

WALKING HAND IN HAND

LOVE LETTERS IN THE SAND

I REMEMBER YOU

THROUGH THE SLEEPLESS NIGHTS AND THROUGH EVERY ENDLESS DAY

I’D WANNA HEAR YOU SAY

I REMEMBER...I REMEMBER YOU...OH...YEAH...WHOA...WHOA...OH...YEAH

Ephiny kissed Chayce’s cheek before handing him to Cyrene who had tears of pride and joy filling her familiar blue eyes listening to the heartfelt love song by Blaise. Ephiny made her way towards Blaise oblivious to the bystanders only having eyes for Blaise. Blaise never lost her focus on Ephiny and watched her stride towards her proudly and confidently...an incredibly beautiful smile captured on her lovely features.

Blaise finished the song and moved the Lute away when Ephiny moved in closer to her. Ephiny held Blaise’s face and looked into her loving blue eyes. "I will always remember you baby." Ephiny whispered tears filling her hazel eyes and captured Blaise’s lips for a deep, loving, sensual kiss as Blaise wrapped her arms tightly around her reveling in the fact that the love of her life was safely snuggled in her arms.

The loud clapping didn’t deter the lovers of their moment especially when their kiss turned more passionate. Ephiny broke the kiss and looked into Blaise’s eyes. "I love it when you serenade me with those ‘undress me eyes’." Ephiny answered smiling lovingly and kissed Blaise again.

"I love you Eph." Blaise answered smiling happily and kissing her wife. "Let’s go get our kids and go to bed so, everyone will stop staring at us." Blaise replied bashfully.

"That’s the best idea I’ve heard all night." Ephiny answered smiling and entwined her fingers in Blaise’s as they made their way back to the table.

"That is so incredibly sweet. I wish you would sing me a song like that." Gabrielle replied smiling and glanced up at Xena who’s chin rested on her shoulder.

"I sing to you every night baby." Xena answered teasingly and kissed her bard on the cheek.

"Blaise that was wonderful! I loved it...thank you so much!" Cyrene exclaimed excitedly and hugged Blaise.

"Thanks mother." Blaise answered blushing and held her mother tighter.

"Bravo!...Bravo!" Salmoneus exclaimed exuberantly clapping his hands approaching the table. "You should have waited until tomorrow when I could have sold tickets." He answered with a smile and dinar signs in his eyes.

Blaise broke her mother’s hug and moved towards Salmoneus along with Xena both sporting a look of ‘if looks could kill’. "Look her little man...just what did I tell you about getting into trouble and getting us involved in the mix along with you?" Blaise asked agitatedly pointing to her sister and herself before moving closer to him.

Salmoneus smiled and gulped nervously. "It’s not what you think...really." He answered with a nervous laugh unsuccessfully assuring the dynamic duo.

"It never is with you Salmoneus!" Xena answered in a low tone and a menacing look planting her hands firmly on her hips in a threatening gesture.

"Don’t hurt him too bad you two...we want our turn with him as well!" Ephiny teased referring to her and Gabrielle then placed her hands on her hips standing behind Xena and Blaise with Gabrielle sidling up next to her Regent.

"Really...ha ha ha...it’s for charity and I just couldn’t resist including you two when those sweet little faces looked up at me."

"Charity?" Blaise asked skeptically with an arched eyebrow standing shoulder to shoulder with her imposing sister in front of him.

"By the gods! The two of you are gorgeous! Are you two sure you don’t want to pose for paintings? I could sell them easily with a little marketing." He answered with a smile and an attempt at shifting the conversation to something less hostile...it didn’t work.

Xena and Blaise looked at one another then back to Salmoneus. "No!" They replied in unison.

"Now...tell me about this charity." Blaise asked in a low suspicious tone.

"Well...there are some activities for the festival which will raise money for the orphanage."

"Like what?" Xena asked agitatedly yet intrigued as to what he had gotten them into.

"Ha ha ha...a kissing booth and a fashion show." Salmoneus laughed nervously.

"A kissing booth?!" Ephiny exclaimed in anger walking towards him. "Let me kill him Blaise!" Ephiny answered with mounting anger as Blaise held her back.

"I’ll do it for the orphanage and If I find out you’re getting a kick back I will personally feed you limb by limb to my father’s dogs!" Blaise shouted with anger and turned to hold her advancing wife back in disbelief that she was actually agreeing to do it. "Come on baby."

"But...but Blaise...a kissing booth. I don’t like that at all!" Ephiny protested vehemently.

"It will be fine...no one will show up. Let’s get the kids to bed." Blaise answered trying to reassure her fiery Amazon...she hoped it worked...for all their sakes.

"Are you going to do it too Xena?" Salmoneus asked with a sly grin.

"Yeah...seeing as how you blabbed it all over town!" Xena sneered at Salmoneus.

"Great...I’ll see you in the morning with the details. Do you think Gabrielle would do it too?"

Xena turned back to Salmoneus and growled her displeasure. "Don’t press your luck!" Xena answered with agitation pointing to him.

"You’re right...ha ha ha...bye!" Salmoneus answered nervously walking away wiping his brow. ‘Wow!...that was close.’ He thought to himself breathing a sigh of relief and left the tavern.

"Eph...look at Joxer." Blaise chuckled and noticed a group of women surrounding him.

"You have created a monster Blaise." Ephiny laughed and picked up Jordyn.

"Hey pumpkin!" Ephiny replied in babytalk with Jordyn’s eyes mirroring her own.

"I’ll be right back." Blaise replied heading towards Joxer. Blaise put her hand on Joxer’s shoulder who glanced up at her. "Now...be gentle with my assistant ladies...I can’t do my work without him!" Blaise replied smiling mischievously.

"You’re Blaise’s assistant?" The women asked excitedly moving closer to Joxer.

"He sure is so go easy on him." Blaise answered mischievously smiling and winked patting Joxer on the shoulder before heading back to her beautiful bride.

"You didn’t embarrass him did you?" Ephiny asked with a suspicious look towards her wife then looked at Joxer.

"Now would I do that?" Blaise asked with a sly grin.

"Like I said before Blaise...you didn’t embarrass him did you?" Ephiny teased turning toward Blaise and kissed her lover.

"Okay...Uncle Tarus...let me have that handsome young man of mine." Blaise replied with a smile picking Chayce up out of Tarus’ arms.

"Okay...little buddy...tomorrow you learn the fine art of crossbow shooting." Tarus teased smiling and kissed his nephew on the cheek. "And you my little doodlebug I’m going to win you a stuffed animal at the festival." Tarus answered sweetly with a big smile obviously enamored with his niece and nephew and kissed Jordyn’s cheek who giggled at her uncle.

"What about me brother? I feel so left out!" Blaise teased.

"I’m gonna keep your daughter from knocking you out again." Tarus laughed.

"Very funny dude...maybe you should go hang with Joxer so you might be lucky with that ugly puss of yours." Blaise answered laughing as Ephiny shook her head with a laugh at the sibling banter hoping her own children would have the same playfulness towards one another as Blaise and Tarus have together.

"Say night night Auntie Xena and Gabrielle." Ephiny replied in baby talk with Jordyn leaning out of her mother’s arms for a kiss from her Auntie’s.

"Night pretty girl." Xena replied with a smile and kissed Jordyn.

"Night sweetie...have sweet dreams." Gabrielle answered with an adoring smile and kissed Jordyn’s cheek.

Ephiny took Jordyn to Cyrene who showered her granddaughter with kisses and hugs with Jordyn hugging her tightly giggling.

"Tell your auntie’s goodnight Chay." Blaise replied proudly and holding him towards Xena and Gabrielle for a kiss.

"Sweet dreams handsome." Xena answered smiling proudly and kissed her nephew on the forehead.

"Goodnight adorable." Gabrielle answered with a kiss. "You’re going to be quite the lady killer aren’t you?" Gabrielle asked in baby talk and tickled Chayce sending him into a wiggling frenzy.

"Yes...he will... unlike his uncle!" Blaise laughed raising her voice for Tarus to hear who waved her off as he conversed with a woman. "Okay...say goodnight to grandma...give her a lot of yucky, wet kisses." Blaise teased and handed Chayce to Cyrene.

Xena stood up and pulled Blaise to the side. "Blaise...I thought you forgave Gabrielle for the circumstances surrounding Ephiny’s accident." Xena asked peering into similar blue eyes.

"I guess I haven’t completely Xena...because of her I had to make that deal with Ares and I constantly have to be away from my family." Blaise answered slightly agitated by the conversation.

"Blaise ...you would have had to have done those duties anyway." Xena answered with an aggravated tone in her voice.

"Yes...I would have Xena...but, I would have had a choice and I could have done it on my own terms. I would have been able to spend more time with my wife and had more time to get to know my children but I can’t now. I am at his mercy Xena. I can’t control the situation like I could before." Blaise answered angrily with Xena seeing the hurt and frustration in Blaise’s blue eyes.

"I’m sorry you have to be away from your wife and children so much because of the deal you made with Ares when Ephiny died. I truly am." Xena offered sincerely. She knew how relentless Ares could be and yes...Blaise was at his mercy but she had to defend her wife’s actions whether she thought they were right or not. Yet, she had to be loyal to her sister and she knew exactly how Blaise felt...Ares had done the same to her many times in the past. She was caught between a rock and a hard place and the only thing she could do was offer Blaise her help. "If I can help in any way Blaise...please let me know." Xena answered honestly.

"You have already with your love, support and for keeping my family safe when I have to be away from them." Blaise answered with a grateful smile.

Xena put her hand on Blaise’s shoulder and smiled. "You know that I protect them as if they were my own wife and children Blaise." Xena answered squeezing Blaise’s shoulder for reassurance.

Blaise smiled mischievously. "And I will do the same for you and your family but just don’t try to hit on my wife." Blaise teased to lighten the mood both laughing from her comment.

"Go on...take your family to bed." Xena coaxed with a smile.

"Goodnight Xena." Blaise answered smiling and walked over to Cyrene. "Okay...Grandma, stop spoiling him." Blaise teased and took her son from Cyrene.

"But that’s what grandmother’s are for Blaise." Cyrene smiled happily and waved goodbye to the twins.

"Goodnight mother." Blaise answered smiling planting a kiss on her cheek.

Blaise walked over to Ephiny and put her arm around her before heading out of the tavern. "Mother...what are you crying about?" Xena asked approaching her mother.

"I’m just a very happy and proud mother that’s all. I’m glad to see Blaise has found the love and happiness she searched for all her life...she deserves it and I’m glad I can be apart of her life." Cyrene answered smiling lovingly.

Xena put her arm around her mother for comfort. "She’s happy that you’re part of her life too mother and she does deserve to be happy. Speaking of being happy...I need to get my wife to bed or she won’t be a happy little bard in the morning if she misses a wink of sleep." Xena answered smiling and kissed her mother on the cheek. "Goodnight mother and thanks for not giving us the short bed." Xena answered with a sly grin and a wink.

"Goodnight darling." Cyrene answered grinning and watched her eldest daughter leave with her love and thought about how blessed she was as a mother to have such a wonderful family. "You deserve the happiness and love I see in your eyes too Xena." Cyrene replied softly to herself watching her daughter disappear from the tavern.

Blaise and Ephiny put the twins in their cribs and watched as they fell asleep the minute their little heads hit the pillow. Blaise put her arm around Ephiny and pulled her closer to her. "You know...Jordyn is the smaller version of you." Blaise replied with a proud and loving smile snuggling closer to her wife.

"She has a lot of your personality Blaise and of course, our son is definitely you in a pint sized form." Ephiny answered with an adoring smile.

"You do realize we have the best looking children in Greece don’t you?" Blaise answered arrogantly and smiled.

"Blaise...you are so cocky but so right as well!" Ephiny answered grinning and elbowing her tall lover with Blaise turning her towards her wrapping her arms around Ephiny.

"That’s what you love about me though baby." Blaise answered with a sexy smile.

Ephiny smiled and gazed lovingly into Blaise’s blue eyes. "I love everything about you Blaise." She answered sexily capturing Blaise’s lips with her own.

"Eph...did you ever think we would get to this point of being completely in love and having two beautiful children that we both absolutely adore?" Blaise asked in amazement.

"Absolutely." Ephiny answered confidently. "I knew we would have this life together the moment I saw you stride cockily into my village." Ephiny answered with an adoring smile and leaned her head against Blaise’s chest to be closer to her and listen to the slow steady beat of her heart.

"Me too baby." Blaise whispered reveling in the secure feeling she felt with Ephiny so close to her. Blaise leaned back to look into Ephiny’s eyes which looked up at her lovingly. "Can you stand it that I am totally devoted and completely in love with you?...that you’re my life source and that my whole life revolves around you and our children?" Blaise asked her heart racing nervously waiting for Ephiny’s response.

"I wouldn’t want it any other way...can you stand it that I feel the same about you?" Ephiny asked with a loving smile looking up at Blaise.

"You know I’m a fool for you and that you’ve got me wrapped around your little finger so, how could I not stand it?" Blaise answered grinning and ran her fingers through Ephiny’s hair holding her face in her hands and pulling her in for a sensuous kiss. "Promise me you’ll never break my heart." Blaise asked through her kiss and deepened it.

"I promise...never." Ephiny whispered through her kiss her heart aflutter from the woman that captured her heart.

Blaise deepened her kiss her tongue exploring all of Ephiny’s mouth. Ephiny slipped her hands down to Blaise’s firm, sexy backside gently squeezing it sending a tingling sensation throughout Blaise. Blaise ran her hands down Ephiny’s body and moved them slowly but steadily up the sides of her sensuous, toned curves to her breasts and gently ran her thumbs across her nipples deepening her kiss. Ephiny’s desire for Blaise intensified and loved the feeling she had kissing the woman that she loves more than life itself.

Chayce began to cry breaking their erotic moment. Blaise rested her forehead against Ephiny’s both smiling and trying to catch their breaths. "Just let him cry baby...he’ll go back to sleep."

"No...I’ll tend to him." Blaise answered and kissed Ephiny again.

"Honey...they’re never going to sleep through the whole night if you pick them up every time they cry."

"I know...but just this once...please?" Blaise asked excitedly not wanting to miss an opportunity to comfort her child.

"Okay." Ephiny relinquished knowing she couldn’t say no when Blaise gave her that cute, pouty face. Ephiny kissed Blaise and turned to lie on the bed for some much-needed rest.

Blaise picked Chayce up into her muscular arms and held him close to her with his cries turning to soft whimpers from being in the comfort of his mother’s arms. "Ssh...go to sleep sweetie." Blaise whispered and kissed his head softly walking around the room gently rocking him to put him back to sleep.

She gently and lovingly stroked his dark hair reveling in the comforting, soft and warm feeling her son exuded. Both her children were precious to her and she never knew she had so much love to give until she saw their faces for the first time when they were born.

Ephiny watched her wife and child marveling at the fact that such a strong, confident woman who’s capable of killing someone effortlessly could be so incredibly loving and gentle with both her and with their children. Ephiny’s heart skipped a beat and tears of happiness and joy filled her hazel eyes watching two of the most important people in the world to her cuddling lovingly with one another. ‘Gods how I love that woman!’ Ephiny gushed to herself and watched as Blaise tenderly kissed her son’s forehead and lay him back in his crib.

It amazed her how Blaise had so much love in her heart to give to everyone. She was to be the God of War...someone to be feared and hated by many. She knew the world had to have conflict for everything to be balanced or total chaos would rule yet, she knew Blaise could be so sweet, gentle, caring and extremely loving. It was so incredibly hypocritical but true. Ephiny was amazed how Blaise was able to turn her misfortunes and pain she felt for most of her life into love and caring rather than pure hatred. Her father had lied to her many times and only saw her as an heir rather than a daughter to love and care about. She was only something for his own personal gain which Ephiny knew saddened Blaise even though her wife wouldn’t allow that fact to be known.

She could see it in Blaise’s eyes...that despite the fact that her father was a tyrant and a truly evil person she loved him and hoped that he loved her. Sadly, Ephiny knew the latter part of that was not true and it troubled her deeply knowing that’s all Blaise wanted from her father. Ephiny was glad Blaise was nothing like him or was she? She asked herself watching Blaise pick Jordyn up and held her tightly who had began to cry after her brother quieted down. She had her father’s arrogance, his extremely good looks, and his ruthlessness when needed but she was able to use the ruthlessness in a different manner than her father.

Ares used it for his own personal gain and his motivation was his love of destruction and to be worshipped. The best way to honor him was for his supporters to wage war and after all, Gods loved to be worshipped especially Ares. Blaise used it as a means to an end and those who suffered the wrath of her ruthlessness deserved it. She never used it in the same way as her father and in fact, a lot of her ruthlessness was used on her father in retaliation to his actions. Ephiny hoped Blaise would always be able to control the unsavory traits her father passed on to her and so far she had been able to. Ephiny thought about how much she has learned about love and caring from Blaise since she lost her heart to the blue eyed beauty the day she arrogantly strolled into her village.

Ephiny’s life had always been totally devoid of companionship from her own insistence. She was devoted to the Amazons and her main goal was to be Queen...at all costs. Yeah...she was pissed when Terries’ right of caste was passed on to Gabrielle but, accepted her destiny with dignity hoping her day would one day come to be Queen. It had when Gabrielle made her a Regent and asked that she assume her duties as Queen while she was on the road with Xena. Ephiny had realized how selfish she was and how that aspect just wasn’t as important to her now as it was before. Oh, don’t get her wrong...the Amazons were very important to her and she would never leave her sisters but, her life had taken new meaning when she met Blaise.

Blaise had become the most important person in her life and now they’re children had too. She was glad that her life changed and was very happy to have Blaise and the twins in her life...she never realized how fulfilling having a wife and children could be until she had all of that. She wouldn’t trade it for the world. Ephiny smiled when she felt Blaise cuddle up close to her wrapping her strong arm around her. "Hey, sexy." Blaise’s throaty response replied softly in her ear. "What are you thinking about?"

Ephiny smiled and rolled onto her back gazing into the blue eyes she loved so much. "About how much I love you and how happy my life has become since you and our children entered it."

"Mine too sweetheart...mine too." Blaise answered smiling and nibbled on Ephiny’s neck lovingly.

Blaise’s hand slowly moved under Ephiny’s nightshirt lightly passing over her taut stomach stopping at her breast. Blaise gently kneaded her breast and placed soft bites along Ephiny’s neck. "Blaise...not here. It’s your mother’s house." Ephiny replied bashfully.

"It’s okay Ephiny...mom allows sex here." Blaise teased and sank her teeth into Ephiny’s neck harder and rolled Ephiny’s erect nipple between her fingers sending pleasurable tingling sensations throughout Ephiny’s body.

"Blaise...what are you doing?" Ephiny asked wiggling away from the hard bites Blaise was putting on her neck.

"I’m hungry baby." Blaise whispered seductively capturing Ephiny’s earlobe in her mouth.

"Well....geez, Blaise... get some food or have you become a cannibal?" Ephiny asked wondering what had gotten into her lover and felt very uncomfortable having sex in Cyrene’s house. She wasn’t sure why but it bothered her.

"No...just hungry for banana cream pie....and you." Blaise whispered in her ear with a sultry tone in her voice.

"You want to eat banana cream pie?" Ephiny asked with a chuckle and in disbelief.

"Yes...I want to eat it off of you baby." Blaise answered seductively and saw the look of amazement and promise in Ephiny’s eyes.

"Blaise....I aah...feel very funny about having sex in your mother’s house." Ephiny stammered nervously and excited at the possibility of Blaise licking banana cream pie off of her.

"Okay...then let’s go have our banana cream pie in the tavern." Blaise answered sexily and sat up pulling her wife with her out of the bed. "Grab the blanket so you’ll be comfortable up on the bar while I lick every bit of the pie off of your sexy body." Blaise whispered sexily thrusting her tongue deeply in Ephiny’s mouth for a passionate kiss.

"Oh, I can’t wait." Ephiny answered through her kiss with Blaise picking her up in her arms wrapping the blanket around Ephiny as she carried her out of the room never breaking their kiss.

"This is going to be very tasty and so much fun." Blaise answered with a laugh and kissed Ephiny again.

"I certainly hope so my love." Ephiny answered her voice filled with desire for her warrior.

"Oh, it will be and I just know you will wear that banana cream pie quite nicely." Blaise answered with a chuckle and kissed her Amazon lover deeply and sensually making her way towards the tavern.

Blaise wrapped the blanket around her Amazon lover and they both secretly slipped into the darkened Tavern just adjacent to the house. Blaise lit a candle and grasped Ephiny's hand leading her towards the bar. Blaise stopped and put her hands on Ephiny's waist lifting her up before her. "What are you doing?" Ephiny asked in a whisper clutching Blaise's strong muscular forearms which effortlessly lifted her off the ground.

"I'm making you comfortable my love." Blaise whispered seductively and flashed a sexy sly grin to the object of her affection before lightly kissing her lips.

Ephiny chuckled and watched as Blaise disappeared in search of her bounty...banana cream pie. 'I'm not sure I want to know what she has in store for me with that pie but, on the other hand, I'm sure I'll love it as long as that sexy beast is sharing it with me.' Ephiny thought with a snicker intrigued by what Blaise had planned for them. One thing was for sure, life with Blaise was never a dull moment. She had a panache for mischievousness and a serious zest for life...something Ephiny absolutely adored about her sexy lover.

Blaise stood before her lovely wife who brushed her long, blond curls off her shoulder briefly stunning the future God of War. "Gods I love it when you do that!" Blaise replied breathless at the sight of her beautiful Amazon wife her heart in aflutter. "You render me speechless and captivate me completely whenever you do that." Blaise admitted lovingly moving closer to her wife...now, standing between Ephiny's legs holding the delectable banana cream pie.

"I know...that's why I love to do it. I absolutely love to see the look on your face when you're captivated and you only have those sexy blue eyes for me." Ephiny answered sexily slipping her hands around the back of Blaise's neck drawing her closer for a soul searing kiss that sent Blaise's passions soaring . The kiss nearly caused Blaise to drop the pie until she regained her senses and broke off the kiss.

"Whoa...baby!" Blaise exclaimed thoroughly satisfied by Ephiny's kiss. "Honey, I most definitely only have eyes for you and that's a fact." Blaise answered with a sly grin lightly kissing Ephiny again who reveled in the closeness of the beautiful woman standing before her. Her woman, her lover, her best friend. her wife...hers and no one else’s.

"And mine are only for you." Ephiny's throaty response answered with a sexy smile to accompany it.

"I have something delicious for you my love." Blaise mischievously answered flashing a devilish grin and swiped her finger along the cream on the pie holding it before Ephiny's mouth as an offering.

"Feed me." Ephiny purred seductively locking desirable hazels with wanton blues.

Blaise lightly wiped the sweet cream along Ephiny's sexy lips moving her own lips closer to the one's she so desired. She lightly traced her tongue along Ephiny's lips licking the creamy substance from them before sliding her tongue deep inside Ephiny's mouth filling her with the tasty treat. Ephiny pulled Blaise closer and deepened the kiss accepting the sweet cream her lover offered...and what an offering it was. 'How could eating banana cream pie get any better than this ?' She wondered breaking the kiss breathless peering into the sexiest blue eyes she has ever seen and loves to lose herself in.

Blaise slipped her hands underneath Ephiny's night shirt feeling her wife's soft skin react to her touch and moved her hands along with the night shirt up the length of Ephiny's taut body locking blues with hazels. Blaise flashed a seductive smile and pulled the shirt over Ephiny's head revealing two perky breasts eager for her touch. Blaise leaned down and softly kissed each hardened nipple before her lightly sucking each hearing Ephiny's satisfied moans of pleasure. Ephiny ran her hands through Blaise's wavy, dark hair pulling her closer to her reveling in the gentleness of her lover.

Blaise's kiss traveled up her chest to her neckline before lightly nibbling on Ephiny's neck. "Oh, baby...the things you do to me." Ephiny moaned breathlessly her desire for Blaise escalating with each breath of Blaise's she felt against her warm skin.

Blaise swiped her finger along the cream of the pie wiping some on Ephiny's mouth before sliding her finger down her lover's chin, to her chest finally covering each erect nipple with the dessert. Blaise's tongue sensually licked the cream from her lover's lips before following the tasty trail down Ephiny's chin, down her chest and between her breasts briefly stopping to swallow the dessert before moving on to lavish her attention to the opposite breast covered in cream. Ephiny moaned at the feeling of Blaise's soft, moist lips wrapped around her nipple. She brushed the dark hair off Blaise's face to watch her seductive lover work her magic. Blaise gently sucked the cream off Ephiny's hardened nipple briefly locking blues with desire filled hazels moving to the other breast which desperately waited for her attention.

Blaise's ministrations were sending pleasurable sensations up and down Ephiny's body causing the throbbing between her legs to intensify. Her center ached for Blaise's wondrous touch and she slowly guided her lover's hand between her legs to satisfy the pulsing sensations there. Blaise gently sucked Ephiny's breast as she rolled the erect nipple of her other breast between her fingers and gently stroked the hot center under her touch sending a rush of warmth and excitement throughout Ephiny. She lightly slid her hand down Ephiny's body stopping at her lover's underwear. She moved her hands to each side and slowly guided her lover's underpants off her hips and down to her thighs. Ephiny held Blaise's face in her hands and sexily moaned, "Take me baby...I need to feel you inside of me." Before passionately kissing Blaise who's heart pounded with excitement in her chest. Blaise slipped Ephiny's panties down her legs dropping them to her ankles then to the floor and deepened the searing kiss. Ephiny pulled Blaise's tunic up and over her head dropping it to the floor and slid Blaise's boxers down as well leaving Blaise standing in her sensuous birthday suit.

Blaise reached over to the pie and dipped her finger in the pie before blazing a banana cream pie trail down Ephiny's taut abdomen stopping to thoroughly cover Ephiny's throbbing sex with the dessert. "Oh, Blaise!" Ephiny moaned hoping her lover would soon consume her sex and satisfy her desire for her. Ephiny's heart pounded in her chest and her center ached from her arousal.

Blaise's tongue slowly moved down her wife's stomach taking in the sweet treat feeling her lover's stomach tighten in response to her tongue. Ephiny lay on her back panting and trying to catch her breath which had become extremely labored when Blaise made her way south nestling her face in Ephiny's delectable mound. Ephiny's hands continued to run fervently through Blaise's hair briefly clutching the raven mane as her lover's tongue drew closer to her center eliciting a gasp from her excitement. Blaise guided her lover's legs over her shoulders and gently spread Ephiny's folds before running her tongue from one end of her wife's sex to the other lavishly devouring the cream that remained there.

"Aah...oh, baby…yes!" Ephiny groaned throwing her head back in pleasure her heart momentarily stopping when Blaise's tongue met her overheated sex.

Blaise's tongue stroked the engorged nub before her devouring everything about Ephiny. Her wife's scent was an aphrodisiac and the more she smelled her the more her desire escalated. It took everything she had to keep from ravaging her right then and there...she wanted her so badly and desperately wanted Ephiny to fill her with the sweet musky fluid she loved so much. Ephiny's hips bucked wildly, her heart raced faster as she desperately gasped for her elusive breath. Ephiny's moans of delight heightened Blaise's desire and she picked up her pace licking the hard clit under her tongue more fervently much to Ephiny's enjoyment.

She felt her lover's sex tighten and relax signaling her that Ephiny's release was near. Ephiny's body demanded it, she couldn't hold it any longer...she didn't want to hold it any longer and she wanted Blaise to have her...all of her and now! Ephiny's hips relaxed as she cried out, "I love you Blaise...this is for you and only you my love!" Before filling Blaise with her essence...her being...her complete love for Blaise. Blaise gladly and willingly accepted everything, and then some that Ephiny offered her . She wanted more and devoured Ephiny's sex with an unbridled passion that Ephiny had never felt before. She continued to lick and suck her fabulous, tasty lover through one orgasm after another until she felt the shuddering and throbbing subside and felt Ephiny collapse...spent from everything she had given her lover so freely.

Blaise gently kissed Ephiny's sex and stood up as Ephiny sat up still trying to catch her breath. She began to wipe her mouth but, Ephiny stopped her and sexily replied, "No, I want to taste myself on you...I love that honey." Before thrusting her tongue deep inside Blaise's mouth for a wet, passionate and love filled kiss letting Blaise know just how much she enjoyed herself. Blaise wrapped her arms around her Amazon lover as did Ephiny around her warrior and deepened the kiss...which as you could imagine couldn't get anymore deeper, but with Blaise...it did.

Ephiny broke the kiss breathless and stared deeply into the blue eyes of the woman she loves more than life itself. The woman who was responsible for showing her the meaning of true love and for helping create her two beautiful children. She smiled lovingly and pushed Blaise's dark hair off her face before resting her hands on her lover's cheeks. "I love you so much...so completely like I never or will ever love another again." Ephiny passionately and sincerely answered before sealing her declaration with a tender kiss.

"Ephiny...I love you so much." Blaise whispered in her ear wrapping her in a tight, warm embrace reveling in the warmth of her lover's naked body against her own. She was still amazed that someone could lover her so much and so unconditionally as Ephiny does.

Ephiny broke the hug and kissed Blaise sexily. "I want you desperately my love." She replied her voice throaty with desire for her dark warrior.

"Then have me." Blaise answered in a seductive whisper leaning Ephiny back on the bar and climbing on top of her lover instantly kissing her and grinding her smoldering, oversensitive body against Ephiny's.

Ephiny's hands roamed freely over Blaise's taut, sweaty back before sliding underneath her the entire length of her tall, slender and muscular body finally reaching her desired destination...her lover's hot, throbbing mound. She wasted no time and began her feast much to Blaise's delight. Blaise's hips rocked up and down so she could feel Ephiny's tongue stroke the length of her hard, wet clit heightening her arousal. Blaise sat up and looked down at her sexy lover who consumed everything that was given to her. Blaise reached back, gently opening Ephiny's folds and slipped a finger deep inside her lover feeling her tight, warm walls wrap around her finger instinctively. Ephiny moaned delighted and intensified her licking and sucking motions along Blaise's sex. "Yes, Eph...that's it baby...oh, yes...come with me honey...I know you want to." Blaise moaned increasing the rocking motion with her hips her desire escalating and her body screaming for immediate release.

Blaise slid another slender finger inside Ephiny's warm, slick opening and released her orgasm for her Amazon lover to enjoy. "Aaah....yes! Baby...that feels incredible!" Blaise exclaimed happily and felt another orgasm sweep over her and felt Ephiny's orgasm consume her as well.

Ephiny moved her mouth away and gasped for air. "Oh, Blaise...baby...that was so incredible!" She exclaimed thoroughly satisfied with her lover and panted desperately to catch her breath.

Blaise's thundering heart finally began to slowed to an even rhythm and she lay on her side next to Ephiny with her leg draped over one of Ephiny's and her tall body half on half off of her sexy lover. She slid her hand down to Ephiny's stomach and rested it there flashing Ephiny a sultry smile before capturing the lips that waited below her for a soul searing kiss. "That was wonderful Eph." Blaise whispered lovingly through her kiss.

"Honey...sex with you is always wonderful and is always an adventure." Ephiny replied softly breaking the kiss staring into Blaise's blue eyes and ran her fingers through her lover's dark hair thoroughly satisfied.

"I want to be the best lover you've ever had Eph." Blaise sexily answered placing a soft kiss on Ephiny's lips.

"Oh, you are my love…you are." Ephiny purred and wrapped her arms around Blaise's neck deepening the passionate kiss.

Blaise broke the kiss startled and looked up. "Did you hear that?" She asked scanning the darkened Tavern.

Ephiny tilted her head back and looked around as well. "No...what is it?" She asked looking back at Blaise amazed at her heightened senses. But, then again, she’s part god so, she should be alerted to things more than others Ephiny thought shaking her head that she was amazed by it.

"Someone's coming!" Blaise answered nervously and crawled off of Ephiny quickly grabbing their clothes.

"Damn Blaise!" Ephiny exclaimed in a panic scrambling off the bar wrapping her naked body in the blanket.

Blaise joined her wife around the opposite side of the bar. "Here...duck down and be quite. Maybe they won't even know we're here." Blaise whispered and squatted down with Ephiny who wrapped half the blanket around Blaise.

They both sat and listened to the foot steps approaching the door to the Tavern and both looked at one another snickering at the hilarity of the situation. Blaise put her finger up to her lips to quite Ephiny and peeked around the bar stool to make sure it wasn't someone coming to harm them. "Ow!...by the gods! These damn cravings are going to kill me!" Xena angrily exclaimed when she stubbed her little toe on the chair. She stopped and rubbed the throbbing injured toe momentarily and proceeded to hobble towards the bar grumbling, "She couldn't get the pie earlier when we weren't all comfy in bed...noooooo! She has to have the friggin pie now!" Xena complained agitated looking at the half destroyed pie sitting on the bar. Ooh, Mom’s gonna freak! Xena observed with a chuckle looking at the pie shaking her head in disbelief at someone’s stupidity for eating Cyrene’s pie.

Blaise and Ephiny found it very difficult to conceal their laughs and covered their mouths to stifle them. Xena decided a different piece of pie was in order and heard the snickers coming from the opposite side of the bar. She got everything prepared and headed towards the door. "Blaise, make sure that mother doesn't find out you destroyed her banana cream pie or she'll have both of your heads!" Xena informed her hidden sister before exiting the Tavern with her bard's request much to Blaise and Ephiny’s chagrin that she knew it was them hiding behind the bar.

Blaise looked at Ephiny with a horrified look on her face and they both stood up continuing their stare. "What are we going to do now?" Ephiny asked worriedly thinking about the wrath Cyrene would bring down on them if she found out.

"I don't know....it's not like we can go down to the local bakery and pick one up at this hour!" Blaise answered sarcastically and scratched her chin searching for a different idea. "Why don't you just whip one up?" Blaise asked her worried and bewildered lover.

"Are you insane? I don't know how to cook!" Ephiny exclaimed surprised Blaise would suggest such a hair brain idea.

"Yeah, that's true." Blaise answered promptly receiving a slap from Ephiny regarding the sarcasm she heard in Blaise’s voice.

"You don't have to be so damn sarcastic about it!" Ephiny answered with a hurt look on her face.

"Okay...never mind, I'll think of something in the morning. Let's go back to bed." Blaise answered leading her wife back towards the house.

"No, not until you apologize for that comment." Ephiny refused and stopped.

"Eph, I was just kidding. I’m sorry honey." Blaise answered with a sly grin and kissed Ephiny to reassure her.

"That’s better…now, we can go." Ephiny smirked and led Blaise towards the house for bed.

Blaise struggled to feed both Jordyn and Chayce without the majority of their scrambled goose eggs finding the floor which was no use as they both insisted on using the spoon by themselves. Blaise chuckled and watched as the two attempted to scoop the eggs onto their spoons to eat with great difficulty. She was amazed at how much they had learned at such a young age. She smiled proudly and saw Ephiny dragging her sleepy self into the Tavern towards her one eye slightly open the other closed.

Blaise chuckled at how tired her wife looked and turned to greet her with a kiss when she fell into her warrior’s strong arms. "Good morning baby." Blaise replied kissing Ephiny on the cheek.

"Huh?" Ephiny asked groggily glancing up at Blaise before burying her head into Blaise’s shoulder.

"Why didn’t you stay in bed Eph and catch up on some sleep?" Blaise asked helping Jordyn scoop the eggs on her spoon.

"I`m so used to getting up to tend to the kids that it`s become a habit now. Then I was worried that they might be giving you a hard time, okay, the truth is I missed you." Ephiny slyly smiled looking into her lovers sexy blue eyes and kissed her slipping her arm around Blaise’s neck.

"Good morning! How are my little peanuts?" Cyrene cheerfully greeted her two grandchildren kissing both of their egg covered cheeks much to their glee.

"We’re doing pretty good mom." Blaise teased breaking the kiss and smiling mischievously as Ephiny snuggled into Blaise’s arms resting against her lover smiling contentedly and was finally able to keep both eyes open.

"Same to you two as well." Cyrene grinned moving around the opposite side of the bar heading towards the food. What in tartarus? She exclaimed angrily.

"What’s wrong mother?" Blaise asked as if she didn’t know what was going on and jabbed Ephiny in the ribs who snickered and slapped her lovers leg to stop the offensive poking before she burst into laughter revealing them as the banana cream pie culprits.

"Someone ate my banana cream pie!" Cyrene exclaimed her anger increasing and walked over to where Blaise and Ephiny were sitting both unable to look her in the eye.

"Did you eat grammie’s banana cream pie?" Blaise teasingly asked Jordyn who smiled and held her spoon up to Blaise. "I’m not sure mom, maybe someone got hungry in the middle of the night." Blaise answered guiding Jordyn’s spoon back to her bowl who proceeded to bang it on the side of the dish making a loud clamoring noise and giggled incessantly.

"I better not find out who ate it!" Cyrene warned staring her younger daughter down.

‘Don’t show any fear, she’ll see it and eat you alive!` Blaise told herself nervously and smiled. "I’ll pick one up for you later mother, how about that?" Blaise offered anxious to get her mother off the subject.

"Well, looks like this little girl has made quite a mess of herself. Come with Mommie and I’ll get you cleaned up." Ephiny replied picking Jordyn up to carry her off and flashed Blaise a mischievous smile knowing Cyrene wasn’t going to give up on the pie subject.

"Chicken." Blaise responded for only Ephiny to hear and watched as her wife winked and exited the Tavern with her daughter.

"No, another one won’t do. I spent so long on that pie! I’m going to ring someone’s neck when I find out who did it." Cyrene warned disappointed and angry shaking her finger to emphasize her point.

"Ooh, look at my little warrior, he’s a mess just like his sister." Blaise retorted nervously and picked up her son. "Let’s get out of here before grammie rings my neck." She whispered to Chayce when she picked him up. "Bye grandma!" Blaise replied in a child like voice quickly moving towards the door waving Chayce’s arm towards Cyrene who smiled lovingly.

"Bye sweetie! See you later!" She answered sweetly and waved goodbye watching the pair quickly head out of the Tavern and looked back down at her ravaged pie wondering what or who could have done that to it.

Blaise exited the Tavern and saw Ephiny waiting for her. "I thought I was going to have to send an Amazon search party in there for you." She replied laughing.

"Very funny! Thanks for leaving me high and dry in there!" Blaise teased shifting Chayce in her arms as they both headed towards the house.

Ephiny chuckled and slipped her arm around Blaise’s waist making their way into the house. "What are we doing today?" Ephiny asked looking up at her tall lover.

"Well…aah…that stupid kissing booth thing that Salmoneus scammed us into and then I thought we could walk around and enjoy the festival. How does that sound to you?" Blaise asked smiling and looking down at her shorter wife.

"Everything but the kissing booth sounds good with me. You know how jealous I can be." Ephiny teased with a sly grin and a wink hugging Blaise closer to her.

"Talk to Salmoneus, he got us into this mess." Blaise answered holding the door to the house open for her wife.

"Thanks." Ephiny replied entering the house and turned to face Blaise. "Yes, but you didn’t have to agree to it." She answered poking Blaise in the chest staring her straight in the eye.

"Honey, it’s for the orphans." Blaise answered with a sly grin.

"You love the thought of being in that kissing booth don’t you?" Ephiny asked offended by Blaise’s sarcastic comment.

"I love you baby and would rather kiss you all day." Blaise answered sexily leaning in for a kiss with a mischievous grin on her face.

"You better!" Ephiny warned with a laugh and pinched Blaise’s firm backside eliciting a laugh out of her tall lover. Let’s get these two cleaned up so we can start our day." Ephiny answered leading her family into the bedroom.

The pair met up with Xena, Gabrielle, Cyrene, Tarus and Joxer to peruse the festivities before Xena and Blaise had to assume their duties in the kissing booth. The group had a wonderful time watching Uncle Tarus in his attempts to win a stuffed animal for Jordyn as he promised her the previous day. "Dude...why don't you just buy her a stuffed animal instead of losing all of your dinars on this game that is obviously rigged?" Blaise asked stepping up next to her brother who flashed her an evil look.

"One more time...I have to win this! I promised." Tarus answered frustrated taking aim with the ball to knock down the milk jugs.

"Suit yourself." Blaise conceded with a chuckle and stepped back to watch as her brother once again missed his target.

"Okay...aah...let me buy two of those stuffed animals for the kids." He replied leaning closer to the booth attendant who gladly sold him the animals to end the pour man’s suffering from his futile attempts. Tarus turned around with a red flushed face from embarrassment and gave Jordyn a small stuffed bear which quickly lit up her face with excitement. "Here you go sweetheart." He replied with a smile and kissed his niece on the cheek who hugged her uncle.

"Thanks Tarus...that was very sweet of you." Ephiny smiled appreciatively and checked out the bear Jordyn was showing her who squealed in excitement.

"Yeah, but I didn't win it fair and square." He answered disappointed and moved to Blaise handing Chayce his stuffed horse. "Here ya go buddy." He replied handing the animal to his excited nephew who took it and immediately cuddled the horse to his neck.

Blaise smiled proudly and replied, "Tarus...it's not how you got it for the kids but, that you gave it to them. That means more to them than watching you win it. Thanks...it was very sweet of you." Blaise smiled appreciatively and winked at her brother.

"Isn't that a cute whittle bear." Xena cooed looking at Jordyn tickling her niece simply forgetting that Ephiny and Gabrielle were staring at her shocked by her playfulness.

"Whittle?" Ephiny asked sarcastically and in complete disbelief from what the Warrior Princess just said.

"Did I say that? I aah...meant little." Xena stammered nervously and walked ahead of the group embarrassed. 'I'm becoming a sap...must be because our baby is on it's way.' Xena thought to herself shocked by her reaction.

Ephiny and Gabrielle looked at one another and burst into laughter over what Xena had just said. "I guess she's mellowing out and getting very excited about our baby coming." Gabrielle observed walking alongside Ephiny.

"It certainly tames you that's for sure." Ephiny answered with a chuckle and pushed Jordyn's blond curls off her face who snuggled against her mother's neck cuddling her bear close to her.

"I see that it has with her even if she is too proud and stubborn to admit it." Gabrielle answered chuckling looking up at her strong warrior feeling a tickle in her belly knowing Xena was hers.

"Xena! Blaise!" Salmoneus shouted through the crowd trying to make his way through all the people to reach them.

"Here comes trouble!" Blaise replied sarcastically stopping as did Xena next to her sister.

"That's an understatement." Xena chuckled dryly positioning her hands on her hips.

"Any way we can get out of this?" Blaise asked looking at her sister then back to Salmoneus who was still having a hard time making his way through the crowd.

"Sure...we could kill him or we could hide?" Xena answered laughing and looked at Blaise.

"I like both ideas!" Blaise answered with a laugh rubbing her son's back who had fallen asleep snuggled comfortably against her neck with his horse tightly tucked under his small arm.

"To late...he's here." Xena answered disappointed seeing Salmoneus approach and stop before them breathless.

"I thought I would never find you." He replied desperately and winded.

"That's what we were hoping." Blaise sarcastically answered and shared a laugh with her sister.

"Funny! It's time we head over there. Wait until you see the line at the booths...we...I mean the orphanage is going to make a killing." He corrected his statement with a nervous laugh and started to walk ahead of the two sisters.

"I better not find out that the orphanage doesn't get the money you promised them." Xena warned following the flamboyant entrepreneur.

"Would I do that to you?" He asked with a nervous chuckle looking back at the pair.

"Yes!" They both answered in unison.

"I promise...it's all going to the orphanage." He answered guiding them to their booths.

"Blaise let me have Chayce while you go up there." Tarus offered and took his sleepy nephew from his sister.

"Thanks." Blaise answered appreciatively and turned to Ephiny. "I love you." She smiled and kissed her.

"Behave." Ephiny warned in a low tone with a half smile still not too happy about the whole situation and watched her lover walk away. ‘Oh, how I hate to watch her go, but oh, I love to watch her leave that’s for sure.’ Ephiny thought aroused by watching her sexy lover stroll away.

They both took their positions in the booth's and Blaise noticed she had good looking women in her line and Xena had scruffy, toothless men in hers. Blaise looked at her sister and laughed with Xena not finding it funny at all who snarled at her sarcastic sister. "Okay folks....we have Xena the Warrior Princess and her sister Blaise the future God of War in the kissing booth's today. So, dig deep into your pockets and help the local orphanage with a donation for a kiss from one of these lovely ladies. Once we reach 100 dinars for each woman the kissing booths will close as we can't have them kissing too long." Salmoneus announced as the crowd groaned their displeasure.

"Ephiny...let me take the kids back to the house for their naps." Cyrene offered taking Jordyn from Ephiny's arms.

"I'll help you Cyrene." Joxer offered his help and took Chayce.

"Oh, thanks mother, Joxer. I really appreciate it." Ephiny answered grateful to have such helpful friends and family.

"No problem." Cyrene smiled happily and walked away with the children and Joxer.

"Ephiny, there is no way I'm letting my wife kiss another person." Gabrielle exclaimed angrily and adamantly.

"What do you suggest we do about it?" Ephiny asked a gleam appearing in her eye at what Gabrielle might have in mind.

"I say we make a bid they can't refuse and end this farce right now." Gabrielle revealed her plan with a mischievous grin and looked at her Regent who possessed the same look.

"I'm in...let's do it." Ephiny agreed enthusiastically.

"Okay...we will commence with the festivities." Salmoneus announced.

"Not so fast! I bid 100 dinars for one kiss with the Warrior Princess!" A voice shouted out through the crowd as Salmoneuos strained his neck to see who it was that was approaching through the crowd.

"I bid the same for the future God of War!" Another voice shouted approaching Blaise's booth much to Blaise and Xena's relief.

Gabrielle and Ephiny stood before their respective wives their small smiles growing in intensity and looked at Salmoneus for to end the kissing booth. "Okay...that ends it there folks." Salmoneus conceded surprised by the two Amazon's gesture and watched them approach their wives.

"Well aren't you a pretty thing?" Blaise teasingly replied watching Ephiny move closer to her.

"Do you have 100 dinars you can loan me my rich wife?" Ephiny asked seductively with a laugh moving closer for her kiss.

"Well, that depends on the kiss." Blaise answered teased cockily as Ephiny captured her lips for a deep, passionate, soul filled kiss. "Dinars well spent my love." Blaise whispered with a chuckle and kissed Ephiny again.

"Let's get out of here." Ephiny replied breaking the kiss and grabbing Blaise's hand to lead her away from the angry crowd which Salmoneus tried to calm down.

The pair walked hand in hand and joined Xena and Gabrielle who had exited the chaos quickly. "Ooh, look at those nice outfits Eph! Let’s go see what they have for the kids. I have to purchase some for our little bundle of joy who’ll be joining us soon." Gabrielle replied with an ecstatic smile and rubbed her expanded abdomen.

"Sure, the twins can always use a new outfit." Ephiny answered and held out her palm to Blaise for some money.

"You’re bleeding me dry woman!" Blaise teased digging in her pocket for some dinars to give to her wife.

"Would you like to join us?" Ephiny asked accepting the offered money gratefully.

"Aah…oh, no, I’m really thirsty how about you Xena?" Blaise stammered nervously not wanting to shop and trying very hard to find a way out of it.

"Oh, yeah very thirsty, we’ll see you two in a few minutes." Xena answered with a sly grin as both her and Blaise quickly headed off towards a portable beverage stand.

"They certainly hate shopping don’t they?" Gabrielle asked with a laugh heading over to the peddlers table with Ephiny walking beside her.

"Well, I’m not too keen on shopping, but the kids do need some new clothes." Ephiny answered with a smile stopping at the table to check out the clothing the peddler had to offer.

"Not me, I can shop till I drop!" Gabrielle answered with a laugh shared by Ephiny.

"Great idea to get us out of there Blaise. I hate to shop!" Xena replied relieved accepting the drink Blaise purchased for her.

"What are sister’s for anyway?" Blaise answered with a laugh sipping her cold beverage.

"I owe you one then little sister!" Xena chuckled. "I’ll be back in a few, nature calls."

"Good luck, I hope everything comes out alright." Blaise teased watching her sister walk away.

"Well, well…what do we have here?" A scruffy man asked tauntingly approaching Gabrielle and Ephiny along with his two other friends.

"Nothing you want to concern yourself with mister." Ephiny answered angry at his attitude striking a defiant pose in front of him.

"It looks like we have a couple of Amazons here boys." The man answered with a laugh shared by his men. "I’m sure I’ve got plenty you should concern yourself with lady. He answered sarcastically and wiggled his eyebrows.

"I think you’re confused with someone who gives a damn about what you say you have." Ephiny retorted angrily and moved closer to the man seriously wanting to put him in his place.

"Come on Ephiny let’s go find Xena and Blaise." Gabrielle replied putting her hand on her Regent’s arm in an attempt to get her to back down.

"Oh, look we have the Queen and her little sidekick Regent of the Amazons boys. The two wenches who lay with Xena and her sister the heir apparent to Ares." He teased in a condescending way strutting closer to Ephiny who had moved closer to him.

"That’s right and this little sidekick will be more than happy to kick your ass!" Ephiny angrily shouted and confidently boasted.

Blaise heard Ephiny and turned to see what was going on dropping her mug before walking towards her wife. "Who do you bitches think you are talking to us that way? You two are nothing but no good amazon filth who breed bastard children!" The man snarled at Ephiny just as Blaise approached.

Blaise lost her temper as Ephiny already had by what he said and grabbed the man by the throat before Ephiny had a chance to his friends approaching with Ephiny quickly dropping them in their place. "You’ll apologize to my wife, to Gabrielle, to me and our children or I’ll snap your neck." Blaise ordered growing more angry.

"I’m not apologizing for anything you scumbag!" The man shouted and spit at Blaise who tightened her grip on his throat avoiding the offending sputum.

"By the Gods Blaise you’re going to kill him. Let him go." Gabrielle pleaded desperately seeing no need for such violence over a stupid remark as she saw it.

"Not until I get my apology from this jerk." Blaise snarled tightening her grip her eyes dark with hatred as the man desperately tried unsuccessfully to pry Blaise’s fingers off his throat choking from her tightening grip.

"Ephiny…stop her!" Gabrielle pleaded to her Regent who stood by watching.

"No, he deserves it Gabrielle." Ephiny answered angrily and looked at her Queen. She was caught between a chariot and a hard place with this situation. She was not about to swallow her pride and allow this pig to trash talk her nation, family and friends.

"He deserves to die because he’s ignorant and said some nasty things? Stop her." Gabrielle demanded.

"I can’t Gabrielle." Ephiny answered angrily.

"Yes, you can and you will. I order you as your Queen to stop this travesty." Gabrielle demanded growing more agitated.

"Don’t do this to me Gabrielle." Ephiny asked pleadingly not wanting to be torn between her Queen’s orders and her wife.

"You know I’m right. Ephiny…now, follow your orders. Gabrielle insisted.

Blaise demanded the apology again which she didn’t receive and watched as the man began to drift off into unconsciousness. "Blaise…please let him go." Ephiny asked putting her hand on Blaise’s strong arm to calm her and hope she would let go.

Blaise looked at her wife in disbelief and then focused on the scumbag before her. "No, I want my apology." She answered defiantly and didn’t want to be deterred from her goal.

"Blaise…let him go! Now!" Ephiny demanded stepping between him and Blaise finally breaking the grip with the man falling in a heap to the ground gasping for the air he desperately needed.

Blaise’s glare cut through Ephiny like a dagger. She had never seen her more livid with her than at that moment. She regretted the fact that she sided with her Queen rather than her wife but, she was following her orders whether she agreed with them or not. She was pissed at Gabrielle for putting her in that position and pissed at the scumbag for putting her there in the first place. She would love nothing more than to have beat the snot out of him herself, but her Queen gave her orders which she had to follow…the orders she now regretted following.

"I can’t believe you just did that Ephiny." Blaise answered angrily and bewildered walking past Ephiny squatting before the man who held his throat still gasping for air. "You’re lucky assface!" Blaise shouted angrily and slapped the man across the face who flew into his friends from the force of the blow as Blaise began to walk away letting Gabrielle know exactly how mad at her she was for interfering before walking away.

"Blaise wait!" Ephiny shouted and ran to Blaise’s side holding her arm to stop her. "Please…stop." Ephiny asked stopping when Blaise did and turned to her.

"Why Ephiny? What do you have to say to me that will make any of this better? Huh? You’re sorry?" Blaise asked angrily moving closer to her wife her blue eyes darkened with rage. "If that’s what you have to say then save it because you’ve made your decision of your Queen and your Amazons over your family so, go back to her side." Blaise shouted angrily and waved Ephiny away towards Gabrielle and walked away.

"Blaise…please." Ephiny pleaded her tears beginning to form when she saw the pain she had caused Blaise.

"Blaise! Blaise!" Tarus shouted and saw his sister turn towards him.

"What’s wrong?" Blaise asked worriedly as her brother rushed to her.

"It’s the kids and mother." He spit out breathless from running.

"What about the kids and mother?" Blaise asked fearful something bad happened to them and grasped her brothers shoulders staring deeply in his familiar blue eyes as Xena approached wondering what was happening.

"They are gone and Joxer’s hurt pretty bad." He mustered out through his gasps.

"What?!" Ephiny a