The Shield


It is an easy word to bandy about, to speak it and to want it to be said.

And, in another time, Xena would have run from that single word.

Her feet would’ve moved with speed, anything to get away from responsibility and from possibility… Anything to not change her ways.


It is a vow, one Xena never though she could keep.

How many promises did she break…just to avoid this kind of bond?

How many souls did she harm…just to keep this kind of love at bay?

She turned to darkness so much that light was just a memory. How could anyone come back from that? How could she come back from that?

“I’ll always be there, just look for me. I’ll never leave you. I can protect you, too…”

How simple it would be, to just walk away and pretend it means nothing. It is a reflex, one she has perfected. Walking away, closing down…


Gabrielle is offering a shield, not of iron, but of her own heart. Gabrielle is willing to take the blows, to take the nightmares, to take the shattered body of a warrior and cradle it through the night.

Xena falls to her knees, wrapping long arms around the bard’s waist, feeling the kind of contentment that a savior can only dream of – the feeling of being saved.

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