Xena, Gabrielle and Callisto do not belong to me. They belong to MCA/Universal/Renaissance.

Part 13 of the Guardian Series


Future Days

By The Guardian


Part One

It is the summer of 2010; the place is Lacey River , South Carolina and the Athenia College .

Up in the third floor, in the classroom of professor Whiteman, a class of ancient history and archeology is about to end. Professor Whiteman is walking around the classroom and returning essays which he has just finished reading and evaluating.

“I am pleased to say that all your essays were very good”, he says as he passes the papers back to the students.

“Good work Tobey, magnificent writing Kacey, you've improved Dominic”, he says as he hands over three friends their essays with big red circled A's at the top of the first pages.

These three young ones have been friends since preschool and they are nearly inseparable.

Tobey is the eldest of the three; he is calm and has a good sensible mind. He has dark brown hair and chestnut eyes.

Kacey is the “beauty”, she is kind and friendly. She has greenish grey eyes and medium long blond hair which she always keeps on a ponytail.

Dominic is the trickster of the group; he always knows how to have a good time. He has a wild nature, but he is also a protective and brave person. He has short black hair and dark green eyes.

They are all students of archeology and ancient history, and one of the only things that separate them are the studies they are specializing in. Tobey studies ancient Chinese and Japanese history, Kacey studies ancient Egyptian and African history and Dominic studies the history of ancient Rome and the Roman Empire .

They smile as the professor hands them their papers and they turn to look at another student to whose desk the professor has stopped by. He looks at the paper as he places it on the desk and says:

“Excellent work, yet again.” He continues his walk around the class and Kacey, Tobey and Dominic move closer to see the grade on their friend's essay.

“A+, how do you do that E?”, Dominic asks a young woman who is dressed in white sneakers, khaki shorts and a green T-shirt. She has light brown, slightly blondish hair, an earring in her right ear and she smiles as she turns her gaze from her paper to her friends.

Her bright blue-green eyes and the scar over her left eye are a familiar sight to her friends.

“Well let's just say I'm lucky”, Exl answers. The bell rings and the professor says to the class:

“Remember, tomorrow we will continue with the early days of archeology.” Most of the students pack their backpacks and run out of the classroom since this was the last class of the day.

Just as Dominic, Exl, Kacey and Tobey are passing the professor's table, he says:

“Exl, could I have a word with you? It won't take long.” The others look at Exl the “you're in trouble now” –look and Kacey pats her on the shoulder and says:

“We'll wait for you outside.” They close the door behind them and Exl goes to the professor's table to see what professor Whiteman has in mind.

“Yes professor, you wanted to have a word with me”, she says to the elderly man who is now sitting behind the table.

“Yes Exl, I wanted to talk about your last essay, or actually about all your essays this year. I have been a teacher for nearly 30 years and I have never read essays like yours. When I read your essays, it feels like I would be right there witnessing the events myself. Like this most recent one, the way you wrote about the battle of Marathon , it was like I could see through the eyes of a soldier who was there. I am really impressed”, professor Whiteman says as he looks at the young student he considers the best he's ever had.

“Well professor, I've always been interested in history and writing, you could say it runs in the family”, Exl replies with a smile.

“Ah yes, speaking of family… I've heard from colleagues of mine that you know professor Potidaea . Is that correct?”, he says taking off his reading glasses.

“Know her? The truth is professor, we're family”, Exl answers with a laugh.

“Is that so? Well to be honest, I have been an admirer of her studies and writings for some years now. Her analyses of ancient Greek literature are fascinating. I was wondering, since you two seem to be close, would you mind asking her if she could come round to our humble school and give us a small lecture on her studies?”, the professor asks humbly.

“Not at all professor. I'm sure professor Potidaea won't mind, she likes to tell others about her work and writings. When would you like her to come over?”, Exl says and the professor looks at his calendar and says:

“Is this Friday too early?”

“Today is Wednesday, so it would be in two days. I think it will be just fine, I'll let you know what her response is tomorrow.”

“Thank you very much Exl. That's all, have a nice day”, the professor wishes Exl and she replies:

“You too professor”, as she opens the door, exits the classroom and closes it behind her.

As Exl walks outside, she puts on her blue baseball cap and is immediately surrounded by her friends.

“So, tell us, what did the professor have to say?”, Tobey asks her as they walk to the parking lot.

“Nothing much, he just told me how impressed he is by my essays and asked me if I could ask Gabrielle to come and give a lecture on Friday”, Exl answers smiling.

“Well no wonder he likes your writing, you've gotten straight A's and A+'s from every exam and every essay this year!”, Kacey points out.

“Do you think professor Potidaea will have the time to lecture here? She must be extremely busy”, Dominic asks as they reach their cars.

“She's working on a translation at the moment, I'm sure one day away from all that will be welcomed. So what are you guys doing tonight?”, Exl says standing by her car.

“I have to go home and continue my project about the samurais”, Tobey says.

“I have to finish my model of the Great Sphinx of Giza”, Kacey replies.

“I have to do some last minute reviews on the Gods of ancient Rome . I have the exam tomorrow”, Dominic says and throws his backpack in the backseat of his car.

“I had my exam on the ancient Greek Gods yesterday and I got the exam back today”, Exl says.

“Let me guess, you got an A+ on that too?”, Tobey asks. Exl responds with just a smile.

“You really know your ancient Greek history, no wonder it's your specialty”, Dominic says.

“I guess you're right Dominic. Kacey, you want a ride home?”, Exl asks and Kacey nods as a sign of agreement. They wish the guys a good evening and hop in Exl's blue -68 Shelby AC Cobra and drive away.

After dropping Kacey at her house about 5 miles from the school, Exl drives home another 5 miles away from town. As she gets closer to home, she can see the house in the distance. The house is like a manor, a large two-story house with an additional attic, a large basement, and with a big courtyard surrounding the house. Exl leaves her car on the driveway and walks by the mailbox. Three names are written on the side of it one below another. Exl sees that the mailbox is empty and walks to the front door leaving the mailbox with the names XENA AMPHIPOLIS


EXL GUARDIAN behind her.

She opens the front door, removes her hat and throws it to the hat rack and leaves her backpack on the hallway table.

“Anybody home?”, she shouts as she walks into the living room and dining hall.

“I'm in the kitchen!”, a voice shouts back from beyond the dining hall. Exl walks into the kitchen and is welcomed by a wonderful smell and a big smile.

Gabrielle is preparing dinner and Exl walks right to her.

“Hey Exl, how was your day?”, Gabrielle asks while mixing something in a saucepan.

“Fine, I got an A+ on my essay about the battle of Marathon and an A+ on my exam on the Gods of ancient Greece”, Exl says as she tries to take a sneak peak under the lid of the saucepan on the stove, but Gabrielle slaps her on the hand so she pulls it away immediately. Gabrielle smiles at her and replies:

“Good for you, did you remember to tell that Ares was a real hot head?”

“Of course I did, after all, it is true. Oh yeah, a professor of ours, professor Whiteman asked me if I could ask you to come and lecture about your work at the College”, Exl says.

“That sounds nice, when would he like me to come over?”, Gabrielle asks in return.

“This Friday, I know it's on pretty short notice, but I told him that I'd tell him your response tomorrow”, Exl says looking into the oven and smelling the wonderful smell of what's cooking inside.

“I think I can think of something to say, tell him I would be delighted to lecture at your school”, the bard says checking that everything is nearly ready for dinner.

“He said that he really admires your writings and studies, imagine what he would say if he'd find out that most of the things you've translated are your own stories from way back. How is your translation going on?”, Exl asks as she leans to the kitchen counter.

“I'm just about done with it, it's the story about our adventure in Treus, remember the one where you…”, Gabrielle starts but Exl quickly interrupts her.

“Don't say anything about the dress, I can still remember how stupid I looked in that outfit”, Exl says as she moves a step closer to Gabrielle. Gabrielle only smiles and replies:

“Alright I won't. Would you help me set up the table for dinner? Xena should be home soon.”

Exl starts to take out plates, glasses and cutlery from the cabinets and drawers and take them to the dining hall and in no time, everything is set for dinner.

Gabrielle and Exl are talking in the kitchen when a black Cadillac Escalade drives to the driveway and a tall figure steps out of the car, locks the car doors and walks to the front door. The first thing either Gabrielle or Exl can hear is the shout:

“I'm home” that they can hear is coming from the hallway. They answer:

“In the kitchen!” in unison and hear footsteps coming closer and closer. A tall, dark woman dressed in a dark grey suit appears at the kitchen doorway. She smiles seeing her spouse and their loyal Guardian talking by the oven. She walks to them, wraps her arms around Gabrielle and gives her a kiss on the temple.

“Hey beautiful”, Xena says and gets a pleasant response from the bard:

“Well hello to you too, you old charmer.” Xena turns to Exl and greets her:

“Hi Exl. Don't think I forgot about you” and pats her on the shoulder.

“Hi Xena. I would never even consider you forgetting about me”, Exl answers with a smile.

Before any of them could say another word, the kitchen timer rings and Gabrielle says:

“You're just in time, dinner is ready.”

They go to the dining hall and start eating.

“How was your day?”, Xena asks while enjoying the wonderful roast beef Gabrielle has prepared.

“I worked on my translation today. It's nearly finished”, Gabrielle answers.

“That sounds great, which story is it?”, Xena asks.

“The about the attempt to poison King Lias, remember?”

“Of course. That's when you Exl had that…”, Xena says looking at Exl, who again interrupts the trip down memory lane before anyone can mention anything about the terrible carmine red dress:

“Yes Xena it was. Please, not another word about it.” Xena has her playful smirk on her face as she takes a look at Gabrielle, then back to Exl and says:

“Okay Exl. How was school?”

“It was just fine. I got an A+ on my essay about the battle of Marathon and an A+ on my exam about the gods and deities of ancient Greece”, Exl replies.

“That's great. Did you remember to tell that Aphrodite is a real pink powder puff and Ares was a mean old grump always up to no good?”

“You know I did”, Exl replies.

“How was your day Xena?”, Gabrielle asks the warrior.

“Well I have to say, things were much easier in the old days. In those days, we could just travel from place to place, help those in need, kick some bad guy butt, stop vicious warlord etc.

Everything is so complex these days, criminals are smarter, consequences of crimes are more devastating, of course it's great that modern technology is so advanced and we have these good new weapons and all”, Xena says taking her pistol from the holster around her waist and putting it on the table.

“Being a detective for the police department is a good job, but I really miss the times when all I needed was my sword, my chakram and good old Argo”, she continues.

“Don't forget about us, your faithful comrades in arms”, Exl says to Xena.

“Of course, I couldn't have made through everything without you two”, Xena says looking at Exl and Gabrielle in turns. Gabrielle is hit by a great idea.

“I know just the thing to get your mind off work. Why don't you and Exl do a bit of sparring, you haven't been training in a while. That has always cheered you up in the past, love.”

The sparkle is Xena eyes returns and she gives Gabrielle a warm smile and says:

“Now that's the woman I married. Always full of great ideas. I don't know what I'd do without you, hon.” Gabrielle winks at Xena and then Xena turns to Exl and asks:

“What do you say Exl? How about a little sparring match after dinner?” Exl nods and replies:

“A wonderful idea, I wouldn't have thought of that myself.” A smile rises to all their faces and the two warriors seem to finish their plates as fast as they could. After they all finish eating, they clear the table and Gabrielle tells the other two:

“You go and get changed. I'll finish cleaning the kitchen and I'll come and watch you spar.”

Neither of them resist and they run upstairs into their rooms to change into their training outfits.

About fifteen minutes later, Gabrielle is already in the backyard waiting for the others.

Only a minute or two later, both Xena and Exl walk out the backdoor and to Gabrielle.

Xena is dressed a light brown sleeveless top and matching very short shorts. On her feet she has brown boot like sneakers, her entire outfit is like a modern version of her leather battle skirt and boots.

Exl's outfit is also like a modernization of her old battle wear. She is wearing a brown T-shirt, green knee-length shorts and black sneakers. They are standing about ten feet from each other, facing one another. Xena looks at Gabrielle and says:

“Okay Gabrielle, since this was your idea it's only fair that you call the rules and the manner we fight in.” Gabrielle nods and raises a finger to her chin as a sign of intense thinking. Then she looks at her two warriors and says:

“The fight will be hand-to-hand combat and the first to get the other to yield wins. The only rule is play nicely.” This brings a smile on the faces of both warriors and they nod as a sign of agreement.

Xena makes the first move, she makes a flip and lands right in front of Exl. Exl knows what Xena is up to and is prepared to hit Xena the moment she hits the ground. Xena can block her strike and answers with a strike of her own. None of their strikes have any chance of hitting the other, the fighters are too equal. Fighting side by side for years had its advantages, but apparently also their down sides. Then both try to do the same trick at the same time. They crouch down and grab each others ankles to trip the other. They both hit the ground and look at each other with amazed expressions for a while. Finally Exl starts to laugh because what just happened seems so funny. Xena also starts to laugh as she realizes the same thing as Exl.

“Okay, okay, that's enough for today”, Gabrielle says and walks to the two exhausted fighters.

They stop laughing, get up and shake hands with wide smiles on their faces. Gabrielle shakes her head saying “what am I ever going to do with these two” to herself.

“Well that sure didn't go the way I imagined”, Exl says as she and Xena walk to Gabrielle.

“It definitely didn't”, Xena says and wraps her arm around Gabrielle's shoulder.

“You two sure can always turn everything serious into just fun and games, can't you”, Gabrielle notes looking at Xena and Exl.

“But isn't that something you love about us, serious on the outside, but full of mischief on the inside”, Exl asks with a wink. Gabrielle rolls her eyes and they all start laughing again.

Gabrielle is able to stop and says:

“Why don't you two go and freshen up, then we can go and watch a movie on TV.”

Exl nods and walks back inside as Gabrielle wraps her arms around Xena's waist as they watch the sun that is slowing setting beyond the horizon.

“But Gabrielle, I thought you liked the way I smell after a fight?”, Xena asks her soulmate.

“Of course I do, but I also like the way you smell after a refreshing bath”, Gabrielle replies with a lovely smirk on her face. Xena kisses Gabrielle on the top of her head and they return inside.

Later, they are all sitting in their spacious living room watching a movie from their very large plasma screen TV. It's just like a typical evening amongst an average family, though there is nearly nothing average about this family. After the movie ends, they are all ready to turn in for the night.

“Good night you two, pleasant dreams”, Exl wishes her Couple as she opens the door to her room.

“Good night Exl”, Xena and Gabrielle both answer back to her. Then she enters her room and closes the door behind her. Gabrielle opens the door to their luxurious master bedroom and walks straight into their closet to get changed. Before Xena has the chance to close the bedroom door and reach the bed, Gabrielle emerges wearing a gorgeous silk nightgown that is a perfect match to her emerald eyes. Seeing Gabrielle like this just takes Xena's breathe away, she can only watch as her wife walks right up to her and wraps her arms around the warrior's neck.

“What is it Xena, did the cat get your tongue?, Gabrielle asks teasingly.

“No, but you did. You look amazing, I'm glad I got you that gown for your birthday. You look divine in it”, Xena is able to answer. Gabrielle looks deep into Xena's azure eyes just like she has done so many times before, but still every time she does it, she feels like she could sink into them.

“That's just one of the many things I love about you, you say very little, but when you say something you say it right from the heart”, the bard whispers to Xena.

“Oh, well what else do you love about me?”, the warrior asks with almost a whisper.

The only words she can hear are:

“Let me show you” and she is pulled to their king sized bed right into Gabrielle's arms.

Their love fills the entire room and after everything else is silent, the only thing heard in that room is two hearts beating as one.

In the morning, Exl's alarm clock rings and she gets up immediately and gets dressed.

She walks down the stairs and into the kitchen where Gabrielle has already prepared breakfast and is sitting at the table reading the morning paper.

“Morning”, Exl says as she sits at the table and starts gathering food on her plate. Gabrielle puts down the paper and smiles replying:

“Good morning Exl.” Exl pours herself a glass of orange juice and looks around before asking:

“Has Xena left already?”, because there is no sign of the tall warrior anywhere.

“Yeah, she was paged about a half an hour ago, she left in quite a hurry”, Gabrielle answers taking a sip from her glass.

“Xena is working really hard lately, I hope she won't wear herself out”, the young Guardian states.

“She is, I hope things would get easier at the department. I have to go to the museum to check the new arriving artifacts, can you give me ride there on your way to school?”, Gabrielle asks getting up and placing her plate and glass on the counter.

“Sure thing”, is Exl's short reply.

“Great, I'll go and get my briefcase from upstairs, then I'm ready to go”, Gabrielle answers and exits the kitchen. Exl finishes her breakfast, walks into the hallway and grabs her backpack just as Gabrielle walks down the stairs carrying her briefcase.

“Ready to go?”, she asks her Loyal and gets a nod as a response.

Not long and they stop by the Museum of ancient history and Gabrielle gets out of the car.

“I'll come by to pick you up after school”, Exl says to Gabrielle and Gabrielle replies:

“That would be great. Don't forget to tell your professor that I'll be coming by tomorrow to give that lecture.”

“I won't. Have a nice day”, Exl says and drives away.

Exl's day at school is just like any other day. Lectures and classes about important historical events and people, many of them very familiar to the young warrior. She knows the answer to every question the history professors ask her, which seems to amaze many of her fellow students, except her three good friends. The day goes by very fast and again Exl is accompanied by Kacey, Tobey and Dominic when they leave their last class of the day.

“Did you see look on professor Whiteman's face when you told him that professor Potidaea agreed to give the lecture tomorrow? He was like he was struck with a baseball bat”, Dominic chuckles as they walk out of the College doors.

“He sure was, but did you see the look on professor Bridgewater 's face when he told about the gladiator fights of ancient Rome and then Exl corrected him entirely. Now he looked like he was struck with a two ton weight!”, Kacey laughs and pats Exl on the shoulder.

“Well he was telling everything all wrong, there was very few things he got right”, Exl says just as they reach their cars.

“How do you know so much about everything? You're like a walking book of history”, Tobey notes crossing his arms in front of him. Exl shrugs her shoulders and simply replies:

“Well it's a really complicated matter. I'll tell about it later, now I have to go to the museum and pick up Gabrielle. You want to come with me?”

The others agree with excitement, it was always nice to see professor Gabrielle Potidaea, whose work they were all very aware of.

They drive to the Museum of ancient history, park the cars and enter the museum.

The museum has just that same morning received a new shipment of artifacts found at a dig site in Greece . Gabrielle has spent the entire morning and afternoon checking that all the artifacts are still undamaged, except for the damage they have endured during all the years they've been buried in the ruins of an ancient town. Gabrielle checks her list and then turns to a small wooden box among the others, that is the only one she hasn't checked. She is just about to open it when she hears Exl's voice at the other end of the hall.

“Gabrielle, are you here?” Gabrielle puts down her list and walks to the direction she heard Exl's voice coming from. She sees her young companion surrounded by her friends looking at what is believed to be the remaining ball of thread which Ariadne gave to Theseus when he was going into the Minotaur's maze. Exl hears the footsteps and turns to look at the approaching figure.

“Here you are, I thought I heard you call for me”, Gabrielle says as she takes the last few steps to meet Exl and her friends.

“Yes it was me. Gabrielle, you remember my friends, Kacey, Dominic and Tobey”, Exl says turning to look at her friends.

“Of course I do, hi everyone”, Gabrielle greets them with her usual smile. The others greet Gabrielle with waves and silent hellos. They all seem slightly nervous, even though Exl had just told them there is nothing to be nervous about. Gabrielle is just another human being, even though she is a professor specialized in ancient Greek literature, heroes and warriors.

Gabrielle knows she has to break the silence somehow, so she asks:

“Would you like to come and see some of the artifacts which have just arrived?” Exl looks at her friends and they all nod in unison. Gabrielle guides them to the crates filled with the things she has been checking all day. The young ones are intrigued by the beautiful and amazing artifacts Gabrielle shows them.

“Professor, are you still translating those ancient scrolls? Professor Whiteman has told us about your work with great enthusiasm and Exl has also mentioned your work”, Tobey asks after a while.

“Yes I'm still translating those old scrolls, they are filled with important information and amazing stories from the ancient times”, Gabrielle answers.

“Do you have a favorite amongst all the stories you've read?”, Kasey asks.

“There are so many stories I like very much, but there is a few which are above the rest, follow me”, Gabrielle replies and leads them to a sitting area near her office. She asks them to sit down and they do as told, while Gabrielle enters her office and returns with a scroll that looks extremely old. She sits in an armchair so she could see everyone and says:

“This story is called “The Guardian”, and takes a quick look at Exl who can only smile hearing the title of the story. Gabrielle begins:

“I sing of two friends; a warrior and a bard, who never could have expected to find a friend in a very unusual situation…” Dominic, Kacey and Tobey listen to the story with amazement, excitement and admiration. They have never heard anything like it and they are after all living in the 21 st century, modern movies and TV shows are sometimes beyond the wildest imagination of many people.

Exl looks at her friends from time to time to see their reactions and she can't help but smile.

Occasionally she looks at the bard who is telling the story with the same passion as she did in the old days. She told the story so vividly, the young ones could feel as they were witnessing everything for themselves. Soon the story is coming to its end as Gabrielle reads the last few lines:

“…for they knew without a doubt, with the love and protection of their Guardian, their love would stay strong for eternity and beyond it.” She wraps up the scroll and turns to look at her audience, Exl is smiling and the others are completely baffled by the story they had just heard.

“Wow that was an amazing story, professor”, Dominic manages to say after a few minutes of complete silence. The other two nod and Gabrielle smiles, when a story left people without words, it usually is the sign of well told story.

“Do you think that the story could be true or is it just another legendary myth?”, Tobey asks Gabrielle. Before she answers, Gabrielle takes another quick look at Exl and then replies:

“I believe that this story is true, I have read other stories about these three friends and in the ancient times, they didn't write fiction like modern authors do. If several stories are told about the same people, they tend to be fact.”

“I think those three must have been really lucky people to have each other. I'd really like to hear more stories about them, professor”, Kacey says and Tobey and Dominic agree with her.

“You'll hear a bit more about them at my lecture tomorrow, I promise. And one more thing, please stop calling me professor, it makes me sound so much older. Where we come from, we call friends by their first name, so just call me Gabrielle”, Gabrielle says with a wink. Exl has to keep herself from laughing as her friends look at each other in turns.

“It's starting to get late, Exl and I must be getting home. I'll see you three tomorrow”, Gabrielle says after looking at the clock and realizing how late it already is. Dominic, Kacey and Tobey get up and wave their farewells and leave.

Exl stands up and waits as Gabrielle returns the scroll back into her office and fetches her briefcase. Walking towards the exit, Exl searches for her car keys and says:

“Did you notice how speechless they were after you finished your story? Just like in the old days.”

Gabrielle locks the museum's door and replies:

“I noticed, it feels good to know I've still got my touch for story telling. That is really one of my favorite stories.” Exl raises an eyebrow, in the same way the other warrior in family always does and Gabrielle continues:

“It's the story where I finally have the courage to tell the woman of my dreams I love her and then marry her and gain a friend, a Loyal and a Guardian out of an amazing young warrior.”

“Well, when you put it that way, it is a great story”, Exl says and courteously opens the car door for her friend. Gabrielle bows her head as a thank you and sits in the front seat, Exl closes the door and walks to her side of the car and jumps into the driver's seat. She looks at Gabrielle with a grin and Gabrielle says:

“Showoff…” and Exl starts the old car and drives home.

When they finally arrive home, they see that Xena's Escalade is parked on the driveway and Exl parks her car next to it. They go inside and are soon greeted by a delicious smell that is coming from the kitchen. Gabrielle looks at Exl with a suspicious look, has Xena been cooking? All of them knew that out of the three, Xena had the worst cooking skills. She has always been a magnificent hunter and tracker but after the catch was skinned and cleaned, she would gladly leave the cooking to Gabrielle or Exl. Exl understands Gabrielle's look and when they enter the kitchen, they see Xena seated at the table eating a slice of pizza and drinking a glass of soda. Xena looks at her bard and Guardian and says:

“I wondered where you were this long, I was really hungry, so I ordered some pizza.”

Gabrielle looks at Exl and they both start to chuckle and Xena just can't understand what is so funny. Exl and Gabrielle join Xena at the table and they discuss the things that have happened that day. It's just like the times they sat in taverns and inns after several days on the road and had something good to eat and drink. Reminiscing the old days is very usual for them nowadays, they all long for the good times of the ancient years. Learning the new customs and ways of the modern times has sometimes been hard, but they've made it. After a long talk, they notice how much the time is and go upstairs to get a good night's sleep.

Something strange is happening at the museum that night. A large boulder of lava rock which was shipped from Greece and arrived at the museum in the morning, is slowly starting to crack. Pieces of it just fall to the ground and a figure steps out what seems to have been her prison for centuries. The figure turns her head around and from side to side and hearing how her neck cracks as a sign of being confined in that lava rock for so long, she smiles. She walks around and notices the door to Gabrielle's office with her name on it and says with a husky and intimidating voice:

“Ready or not, here I come.”


Continued in Part 2

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