Disclaimer: Xena: Warrior Princess and its characters are owned by Studio USA, Renaissance Pictures and Universal Studios, I dont own nothing.
Notes: This idea for this story came to me while reading Sacrifices (working title) by Ken Rogers. Great writer. Also I need to thank him cause without his brilliant beta reading skills this wouldnt be as good as it is.
This is my take on what happened after Friend in Need.
Warning: Contains spoilers for Friend in Need parts one and two.
Rating: PG-13 for scenes that may not be suitable for children.
E-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me what you think good or bad.
Its my first fic so please dont be to hard, constructive criticism welcomed.
"Eve." She said it out loud, but no one could hear her. I have to go tell her of Xenas death, she thought. Even thinking about Xena being dead was too much to bear, so she started crying again over Xenas ashes. NO! she said to herself I have to be strong. So Gabrielle wiped her eyes and set a course for Chin, hopefully she would find Eve there.
She was finally here in Chin. It had taken her three weeks but she was here. Gabrielle stepped off the boat clutching Xenas ashes to her chest like the urn was the only thing in the world. To her it was. She entered the town where the ship docked and started asking questions, to try and pick up Eves trail. After what seemed like hours she finally found out that Eve had been in a town, eight miles to the north, just a few weeks ago. Finally, Ive got something. Now time to get a horse. She made her way to the local stables and managed to get a horse, it wasnt really well trained but trained enough for what she wanted.
The trip to the town in the north went by uneventfully. It took her three days to get there because she didnt want to push the horse too far. The days and nights were long and lonely. As she sat around the campfire one night, she missed Xenas presence by her side, and what made it worse was that she had not seen her since Japa and never would again. Gabrielle looked into the fire and saw Xenas face. "Oh, Gods," she whispered. "How do I get over this?" she shouted to the Heavens. "How?" she whispered. Get a grip Gabrielle, it isnt going to help if you lose it in front of Eve, is it? she asked herself. She continued looking into the fire, a look of defeat on her face, waiting for the emptiness of the new day to come.
The next day she found herself in the town she was told about. She was only in the town for two hours before she was off again. She stayed such a short time that she never found out the name of the town. But she did find out that Eve was in a town fourteen miles east of this one just earlier this week. Just great, it looks like rain she thought, looking to the sky. Just what I need she remarked to herself and even in her mind her voice was full of sarcasm, but she didnt laugh or smile, she hadnt since Japa and didnt think she ever would again. Better get going she said to herself, not really caring if she got wet.
On her journey to the town, she only stopped to rest her horse; she didnt eat much and hardly slept at all. It was the same every time she stopped; she just sat there thinking about Xena. On the fourth day of riding she was two and a half miles away from the town Eve was supposedly in, when thieves attacked her. But what they didnt expect was a grieving bard who couldnt care less if she killed them. She tried to warn them to keep out of her way, but they didnt listen and that cost them their lives. The fight was over even before it had begun. She took them out before they had a chance to fully draw their weapons. After the fight she continued on her journey and reached the town after a full day riding.
Gabrielle entered the town and got off the horse. She walked to the stables to let the horse rest and then set out to look for information on Eve. After an hour she had found out nothing. Im never going to find her, Chin is just too big she thought. But then she found herself in the centre square of the town and there stood Eve preaching peace.
She waited in the shadows until Eve had finished preaching, not wanting to disturb her.
Eve knew someone was waiting in the shadows, watching her. She could not see their face but she knew they were there.
After Eve had finished, the group around her departed and Gabrielle stepped out of the shadows. Eve saw her and ran to her. "Gabrielle," she said in excited greeting, then noticed that her mother was not at Gabrielles side. "Wheres mother?"
"Eve thats why Im here, its Xena shes ." She couldnt even say the word.
"Dead mothers dead isnt she?" Eve said her voice choked with emotion.
"Im so sorry, Eve."
"As am I, Gabrielle." They both stood there in silence not knowing what to say to one another. "Gabrielle, promise me you will not harm yourself over this, please. I couldnt lose you as well."
"I I promise," she answered. But if I got into a battle and died that wouldnt be harming herself would it? Gabrielle stop it now, your just making it worse she thought to herself.
"Gabrielle," Eve said snapping her out of her morbid thoughts.
"How did mother die?"
"She um," Come on you can do this, she thought to herself. "She went into battle by herself in Japa and was . Um, outnumbered one thousand to one and I havent seen her since then." Well shes dead you wouldnt really, she mocked herself.
"Thank you, for bringing me the news. Please excuse me, I need to be on my own for a while," Eve told Gabrielle.
"Ok," she said and Eve ran to the outskirts of the town to grieve by herself.
Gabrielle made her way back to the stable where she had left her horse and when she got there, broke down and started crying.
Meanwhile Eve was on her knees crying in a field just outside the town. She wiped her eyes and stood up. Then she shouted "Mother!" nothing happened, so she tried again, "Mother!" Again nothing happened, she was angry now and shouted "Mother get your butt here now!" And there before her eyes was her mother.
"What?" Xena snapped.
"Mother why are you doing this to Gabrielle, we both know you might not be solid but you can still be with her" Eve told her mother, not trying to hide the emotion from her voice.
"Im sorry I snapped at you Eve. I cant be with her, it would just make it harder on her and I cant, no wont, do that to her."
"Mother youre already making it hard on her, have you seen the state shes in? Shes a mess." Eve argued.
"I know, I know, but in the end it will be easier," Xena told her daughter. But for who? they both thought silently.
What they didnt know was that a certain bard was listening to their conversation and was shocked, to say the least, and angry. Gabrielle had decided to go see if Eve was ok, so after wiping her eyes, she went to look for her. And found her standing there with Xena. She had heard Eve call for her mother and ran to where the shouts were coming from. She stormed out from where she was watching them and shouted, "Easier? Do you really think that the fact that youre dead will ever be easier for my soul to bear? Do you?" she asked angrily, walking right up into Xenas face.
"Gabrielle Im sorry," Xena said but Gabrielle was having none of it.
"Youre sorry! Is that all you have to say? Your sorry?"
Xena looked to Eve then back to Gabrielle. She made a decision and said,
"Maybe Id better go, for good this time."
"No wait, Im sorry, please dont leave me again" Gabrielle said softly.
Xena found herself looking into her sea-green eyes transfixed. Unable to say no to her, she whispered, "Ok."
Gabrielle felt relieved at that point and the happiest she had felt since Xenas death, so she just collapsed on the grass and closed her eyes. Please dont let this be a dream, she prayed, then opened her eyes to see Xena and Eve looking down at her with worried looks on their faces.
"Are you ok?" Eve asked her.
"Never felt better" she replied.
The three of them walked back to the town. All three of them had big smiles on their faces, but to anyone else it would be just two women with big smiles not three.
"Eve," Gabrielle said. "Before I came here, did you already know that Xena was dead?" She would never get used to saying those two words in the same sentence but all that mattered was that Xenas spirit was with them now.
"I wasnt sure, but when you came it confirmed my suspicions. The night before you came Gabrielle, I talked to mother like she was standing next to me. When I had finished I felt someone kiss the top of my head. But when I turned around there was no one there," Eve answered looking at her mother.
"Yeah, that was me," Xena admitted.
"Then why didnt you come see me?" Gabrielle asked with a hurtful look in her eyes.
"Gabrielle you heard what I said back there, if I had come to see you then it would have been harder," Xena explained.
"I see your point Xena, but then why is it so easy now that youre here?" Xena couldnt answer that question and knew that only Gabrielle could answer it for herself. So they continued walking into the town.
They stopped at the stables and Gabrielle turned to Eve. "Im heading to Amphipolis, to lay Xenas ashes with her family, would you like to come with me?"
"Yes, if you dont mind."
"Of course not, your part of the family, youll always be welcome," Gabrielle said.
"As are you," Xena said looking Gabrielle straight in her eyes, then their eyes locked and that was all Gabrielle needed to know. Xena thinks Im part of the family, not that I didnt know that already though, but its nice to be told that Gabrielle thought to herself.
"Come on, time to go" she told Xena and Eve. And they all walked out of town, Gabrielle walking with the horse then by her side, Xena, and by Xenas other side, Eve, all walking together. Now this is what is meant to be; all of us being a family, they all thought, then looked at each other and laughed because they where together, forever and not even death could part them.