A Journey of Love and Life

Part 9

They had been in Athens for a few days when they heard of Eli’s impending arrival there. There had been talk for days that a great Spiritual man was coming to Athens and knew it had to be Eli. It didn’t take them very long to track him down and they were both very happy when they finally got hold of him. Watching him from a distance as he talked to a crowd just outside a marketplace, they both smiled as they heard him telling the crowd of his peaceful ways and how they too could become a part of peace and love. As he was talking he spotted them and smiled overjoyed to see two of his dearest friends. He didn’t miss the joined hands and was taken aback by the radiance and peace he saw on Xena’s face. She looked beautiful, her blue eyes sparkling as she looked at the man she admired and the crowd that had gathered to listen to him.

After he had finished talking, a few people lined up with sick loved ones, having heard he could heal. He spoke softly to them and placed his hands on all of the sick, healing them after he knew their hearts were pure. After he had healed the last man, a man who could not walk or see, he went over to Xena and Gabrielle, who looked content to stay where they were sitting, and smiled when he saw Xena’s head resting on Gabrielle’s shoulder. They both looked a lot better than they had when they’d set off back for home after their crucifixion and death at Caesar’s hand, and he realised they had finally done it, they had finally admitted their love for each other and that brought him a lot of joy.

It wasn’t till he was almost at Gabrielle’s side that he realised that Xena was actually asleep, wrapped up protectively in Gabrielle’s arms and he looked at Gabrielle with worry, wondering if the warrior had been injured somehow, a reassuring smile from Gabrielle made him feel a little better, even though he knew it was very rare for Xena to fall asleep in the middle of a crowd.

“Is she okay” Eli asked still worried, thinking that the warrior must be ill, because she didn’t awaken at the sound of his voice, and then realised it was because of Gabrielle’s protective hold on the warrior that she felt safe enough to still sleep.

“She’s fine Eli, just a little tired that’s all” Gabrielle said trying to reassure him, she knew Xena would want to tell Eli about the baby when they were in a more private venue and hoped her love would awaken soon. It was an awkward situation for her, everything in her wanted to shout to the world that Xena was pregnant and they were going to have a baby, but she knew Xena’s  and the baby’s safety depended on there being as little people as possible knowing Xena was pregnant.

“It’s so good to see you Gabrielle, I’ve been worried about you both since Rome, I’m glad to see you finally admitted your love for each other, you both deserve it” Eli said still not convinced that Xena was okay, but happy to see them both alive and well and obviously in love. He thought of the way they’d been when they had parted company with him after Ares’ little plan to get the chakram of light and had seen how much they loved each other then, and had hoped they would tell each other that soon, each of them had suffered too much to deny themselves the love they deserved, the love they could give each other.

“Xena sweetheart, wake up baby” Gabrielle said softly deciding that waking Xena and getting her back to their inn would be better for the warrior, if she wanted to sleep again, Gabrielle would rather her be in a comfortable bed. She felt Xena stir in her arms and smiled placing a kiss on Xena’s forehead. Xena lifted her head slowly, blinking the sleep out of her eyes as they locked onto the eyes of the woman she loved and she smiled sheepishly at the thought that she’d fallen asleep while they had waited for Eli. She felt Gabrielle’s hold on her release and she looked up at the man she admired, the man she knew was going to make a huge difference in this world.

“Sorry I fell asleep on you Eli, Gabrielle just makes too good a good pillow” Xena said sheepishly and felt a slight tickle to her side as she looked at Gabrielle’s face and saw mock annoyance there. She smiled and placed a light kiss on the beautiful lips before her as an apology for her remark and decided she had better get up. Swaying a little when she did get up she placed her hand in Gabrielle’s to steady herself. That’s the last time I fall asleep sitting on the hard floor she thought as she stretched a little to get rid of a few cricks in her back from sleeping while sitting.

“That’s okay Xena, is everything okay, it’s not like you to fall asleep in the middle of the day and in the middle of a crowd” Eli asked still concerned for the warrior princess, she still looked like she could sleep for a few more candlemarks and knew that if she were in a comfy bed she’d be doing just that.

“I’m fine Eli, let’s go to the tavern Gabrielle and I are staying at, we have a little news for you” Xena smiled at the genuine concern Eli was showing for her, and wondering how he was going to take their news. She knew that he loved Gabrielle and worried that he might think she had cheated on Gabrielle too and that Gabrielle had taken it, she knew Eli liked her too, and that made her not want him to think of her as someone who would do that. They walked to the tavern in silence, except for the growling of her stomach which Gabrielle teased her about mercilessly. They went straight up to their room, and asked the tavern keep to bring them up some food so they could talk in privacy. Athens was a big place and there was a big chance they’d run into some people that knew of her and if they learned of her pregnancy it might be dangerous for her. Xena knew she wouldn’t be able to keep it a secret for long, she was already showing but her bump was still small enough that she could hide it at least until they’d left Athens.

Xena waited until the food had been brought in to broach the subject of her pregnancy with Eli, listening instead to Eli and Gabrielle talk and adding her little bit in every now and then, answering a few questions on what they’d been doing since they’d last seen each other. She smiled as she realised Gabrielle was keeping Eli from asking about their news before the food came in and smiled a sigh of relief when it finally did. Eli watched on in shock as both Xena and Gabrielle tucked into their food with gusto, he knew from traveling with Xena and Gabrielle that it was Gabrielle with the bigger appetite, and was amused by the fact that Xena was now eating as much or more than Gabrielle. Like she is eating for two he thought as it clicked into place, the tiredness and now the appetite, Xena was pregnant. Unconsciously he looked down at her stomach and saw the slight swelling of her abdomen, and looked up at Xena and Gabrielle who were oblivious of his little revelation. She must have gotten pregnant before they declared their love for each other, I wonder who the father is, or are the Gods involved Eli thought deciding to let Xena and Gabrielle reveal what had happened, obviously whatever it was it hadn’t stopped their love for each other, which told him that Xena hadn’t cheated on Gabrielle. He looked down at Xena’s abdomen again and then at Xena who had seen him look in that direction and knew he’d figured it out.

“Eli, I know you know so I’m just going to say it, I’m pregnant, we don’t know how I got pregnant or who the father is, although we suspect a God is involved, but I didn’t cheat on Gabrielle” Xena explained seeing in Eli’s eyes that he believed her and breathed a small sigh of relief.

“It’s okay Xena I believe you, I saw the love you two have for each other when I was talking to that crowd, if you’d cheated on Gabrielle, that wouldn’t be there. I’m so happy for you both” Eli said as he got up and gave Xena a hug, placing his hand on the place where her child rested and realised who had been responsible for getting Xena pregnant. He smiled as he realised just how special this child was going to be and it was revealed to him the purpose of this child’s birth.

“You look beautiful Xena, pregnancy obviously agrees with you” Eli said as he broke away and sat down again, he felt the acceptance from his God and knew he was going to be able to tell them who had given them the child and then another thing was revealed to him and it left him almost crying with sadness.

“What is it Eli, is it the baby” Gabrielle asked seeing the tears shimmering in Eli’s eyes as he shook his head and looked at her sadness filling his heart again for the pain his revelation was going to cause Gabrielle.

“No Gabrielle it’s not the baby, the baby will be fine, it’s a gift from the God of Love, Abba my god, he made you pregnant Xena, and your child is going to be very special” Eli told them wondering how he was going to tell them what had been revealed to him, they’ve been through so much pain in their lives why must they go through more he silently asked his god, as more was revealed to him.

“Then what’s wrong Eli?” Xena asked quietly somehow sensing that this was going to be about Gabrielle, the way Eli had looked at Gabrielle made her worry that Gabrielle was going to be put through more pain and she almost wanted to grab Gabrielle and get her out of here so she didn’t have to hear what Eli was going to say.

“I- when I touched your stomach Xena Abba my God revealed something’s to me, some of it good and some of it bad, the baby is not only yours Xena but it’s Gabrielle’s, when Abba created the baby he used your essence and Gabrielle’s to make the child, that’s one of the reasons the child is so special, it will be a child with borne from two very different people and will have both your darkness and your light inside it” Eli revealed to them seeing them smile at each other and knew that subconsciously they already knew that the baby was theirs and then pushed on.

“ There is something else Abba revealed to me and this is going to be very painful for you both to hear” Eli said as he watched them move closer to each other both of them seeking the others embrace subconsciously and he knew they would be okay after they heard this despite the pain it would cause them. “Gabrielle there is no easy way to say this so I have to just say it, Gabrielle, Abba revealed to me that you can’t have children, when Dahok raped you and you had Hope he left you barren after you gave birth to Hope” Eli told them and saw tears brimming in both of their eyes, and he smiled as he saw Xena’s hold on Gabrielle tighten, showing her support.

“I had a feeling this was going to happen” Gabrielle said quietly, not knowing how to take this in, but knowing she would survive it for Xena’s sake and that if she couldn’t have children she would be happy to be a mother through Xena, she already was it seemed, being that the child Xena was carrying was hers.

“I knew that when Dahok did that to me, there would be more to it, I just wasn’t ready for this” Gabrielle said as tears spilled down her face as she thought of the fact that she would never give birth to a child and that the only child she would have that would be a part of her would be this child that Xena was carrying. She turned her head into Xena’s shoulder and cried for the children she was never going to have and for Xena, and the guilt she knew her partner would be feeling over this. Although she had suspected that Dahok wouldn’t leave her untouched by his rape of her and would probably cause her more pain, she had hoped it wouldn’t be this, that he would take her ability to have a child from her.

“Ah there’s more guys, Abba wants to give you another gift and I’m not sure how you are both going to take it” Eli said as he looked at them with sadness, he knew the pain Gabrielle was feeling but he also knew that she would not allow Dahok to beat her, Gabrielle was a strong woman and she would get over not being able to have a child and he knew that what he was going to tell her was going to make it a little easier for her.

“Gabrielle he wants to give you the ability to make Xena pregnant” Eli said waiting for the reactions on their face and was not surprised by the shock on Gabrielle’s face, but was a little surprised by the calm acceptance on Xena’s face and realised just how deep the warrior’s love was for her bard.

“He wants to what?” Gabrielle asked wondering if she had heard him right and was afraid to look at Xena’s face if she had, he didn’t just say that the God of love wanted to give her the ability to get Xena pregnant, he couldn’t have could he? She thought wondering what was going through her warrior’s mind at this revelation.

“He wants any children you and Xena have to be borne of the two of you, and because you can’t have children he is giving you the ability to make her pregnant, don’t worry Gabrielle he isn’t going to turn you into a man or anything” Eli chuckled as he saw the wheels turning in her head and realised where it was heading.

“Then how is she going to be able to make me pregnant?” Xena asked quietly finally speaking up after hearing Eli’s announcement. The pain she’d felt when he’d said that Gabrielle couldn’t have children had been tempered a little by his second announcement, and although she wouldn’t have normally wanted to be the child bearer in their partnership she knew she would be more than happy to give Gabrielle children, and as many as Gabrielle wanted. We are definitely going to have to visit the Amazons and make things official, and I’m just going to have to put what I did to the Amazons all those years ago behind me, I’m a different person now, and we love each other, she deserves a joining ceremony Xena thought as she looked at the beautiful woman she loved her shimmering emerald eyes resting on the man who was going to tell them how they were going to be able to have a family. We are a family she thought as she stroked her stomach feeling the swell where their child was growing.

“Ah- well I don’t know the logistics of how you make love, not being a woman myself, but when you do and you both want to have a child your essences will mingle and a child will be conceived, but you both have to want it, it won’t work if only one of you wants it” Eli told them still a little shocked at Xena’s acceptance of this, knowing the warrior princess he hadn’t been ready for her to be wanting to be the child bearer in their relationship. Even though Xena was pregnant now he knew that it wasn’t the role she had seen herself playing in their relationship and knew that it was her love for Gabrielle that had helped her accept this.

“Are you okay with this Xena? I know this isn’t how you saw us having children” Gabrielle asked seeing only calm acceptance on her warrior’s face and felt more tears brimming in her eyes of the love she saw shining in those brilliant blue eyes.

“Sweetheart, before learning all this I thought that this baby I’m having now would be the only child I would carry, and that you would be the one to have any other children we’d have, I was even ready to ask old Aphrodite for a hand in making the children ours, but things have changed and you can’t be the one to have our children, and I don’t want us not to have any more children, I love you Gabrielle and I would be happy to have more children with you if that’s what you want” Xena told her looking into Gabrielle’s shining green eyes and forgetting that Eli was in the room.

“I love you too and I thank you for doing this, for saying you would have my children, it almost takes away the pain of knowing I can never give birth to a baby of ours, to know that the children you bear will be mine” Gabrielle told Xena and felt Xena’s head coming down to meet hers as they kissed softly affirming the love they felt for each other and she placed her hand on Xena’s stomach to feel their child growing within Xena.

“I still can’t believe the baby is mine too, it had already felt like my child before this but to know that the baby you are carrying is mine, it just takes my breath away, you take my breath away, you are so beautiful Xena” Gabrielle told Xena capturing her lips again as they both forgot about Eli’s presence in the room. They looked at each other as the kiss ended and felt their hearts uniting as one and knew that nothing would be strong enough to break the love they shared for each other.

“You don’t know how happy it makes me to see the love you two have for each other” Eli said bringing them back to reality, and they both blushed as they realised they had kissed each other in front of him. He smiled knowing they were going to be okay and marveled at the strength of their love and knew that no matter what they were going to be together for eternity. There wasn’t a power out there strong enough to destroy their love.

“Thank you Eli and thank your God for us, despite the bad news you have made us the happiest women in the entire known world” Xena told him stunning both Gabrielle and Eli with the heartfelt sincerity of her words. She truly was happy that the children they would have would be a part of them both and was happy enough to be the one to carry them if it meant Gabrielle’s happiness.

“Well I need to get back to my tavern, I’m going to be in Athens for a few more weeks if you want to come and hang out, after that I thought I’d head to some of the outer villages, towards Corinth and Crete” Eli told them happy that he was going to get to spend some time with them, he loved both of them very much and knew that he was witnessing one of the purest forms of love, the love of soul mates.

“Actually we’ll be heading back that way after a few weeks to, would you like some company?” Xena asked knowing she hadn’t discussed this with Gabrielle but she wanted to go to the Amazons and share the news of her pregnancy with them and talk to them about being able to marry a certain Amazon Queen.

“I would love it, well you take care of yourselves, take it easy Xena, let me know when you want to leave and we will head out” Eli told them both as he got up and let himself out of their room.

“Xena why did you tell Eli we were heading back towards Amphipolis?” Gabrielle asked curiously, she was sure that after the few weeks they’d spent in Athens that Xena would be ready to go adventuring again until it was almost time for the baby’s birth.

“Gabrielle, Eli just told us that I would be having any children we have, you are an Amazon Queen and if we want the Amazon’s to be okay with this then we are going to have to go back there and make me an Amazon, Gabrielle I love you so much and I’m not asking this because of the baby or our future children, Gabrielle would you be my wife?” Xena asked looking at the surprise on her lover’s face and then saw the tears of joy in her loves eyes and felt tears forming in her own in response.

“Of course I will sweetheart, I love you so much nothing would make me happier, thank you for all that you are changing for me, I never thought you would be this accepting of this and of becoming an Amazon, and it shows me how much you love me, I just want you to know I would do the same for you if it were ever necessary” Gabrielle told Xena taking her in her arms and kissing her gently tears brimming in both of their eyes as they savoured the joy of their love. Xena felt herself being pushed down onto the bed and knew what her bard wanted, to love her and she allowed her love to take her over and over again until they both fell asleep wrapped up in each others arms.

Continued in Part 10

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