Following the great Amazon war. Peace is thought to be restored to the Amazon nation as Xena and Gabrielle continue their stay in the secret village. But the peace is short lived after a series of suspicious incidents begin to occur that appear to be aimed at Gabrielle. This causes concern for Gabrielle's well being as the incidents begin to reveal a sinister plot against her.
-This is the 3rd story in my
"THE PRINCESS AND THE QUEEN" series.Following :
"THE PRINCESS AND THE QUEEN" series
SCROLL I: THE NEW ORDER
"THE PRINCESS AND THE QUEEN" series
SCROLL II: THE GREAT CAMPAIGN WITHIN THE DOMAIN
So it's highly suggested you read those in order before this one if you haven't already. As this is a direct sequel and knowing the events and/or characters introduced in the previous stories are important for understanding the plot of this story.
"The saddest thing about betrayal is that it never comes from your enemies.”
The screams of the people rang out as they fleed from their attackers. The village was in utter chaos as the ever persistent army advanced. Taking or destroying everything in their path. Who could stop this madness the frightened villagers wondered. All seemed lost when suddenly the village's attackers heard a sound. While some had no idea what it could be. Other's in the group knew of the origin of the unique cry and begin to flee. But they were too late. Because as they ran a tall figure jumped in front of them, blocking their escape. The villains stopped dead in their tracks as they looked at the person standing there with their back to them. One of the villains gulped in fear as he began to slowly step backwards. The figure looked over their shoulder at the village attackers with an stare that sent chills down the evil doers spines. They knew all too well that this was not going to end the way they had planned. But one of the villains was unafraid of the figure. He knew of the figure but still thought he had a chance. He yelled as he held his weapon ready and charged the figure. But this proved to be the villains undoing. Because as he attempted to attack...
Yeah, yeah Xena kicked his ass and saved the village. The end.
Gabrielle stopped her story and looked at Clover who was sitting next to Skyla and a number of others who were listening to the bardic queen's tale. Clover felt Skyla nudge her for interrupting. Clover looked at her and shrugged.
What? We all know that's what happened.
Gabrielle smiled as she shook her head.
Okay so maybe some of my Xena stories are a little predictable. But it's not my fault that's how alot of our adventures end.
True. But that's only because you and Xena are just too awesome.
Everyone else around Gabrielle agreed as they raised their drinks to their queen and her warrior princess and cheered. Gabrielle smiled as she stepped off the platform in the village mess hall and walked over to the table where Xena sat. Xena smiled as she put down her drink and pulled Gabrielle onto her lap.
So am I gonna have to start getting more creative with how I take out the trouble we encounter now?
(Joking) Might help with making my stories more original.
(Joking) I'll be sure to keep that in mind.
Everyone in the hall went back to their own business as a number of Xena and Gabrielle's friends chatted with them. It had been a little over three months since the great Amazon war had ended. And things in the village seemed to be going well. Everyone was enjoying the calmness and security that the village provided. Especially after all the ugliness that war can bring out of people. But as queen, Gabrielle vowed to move the Amazon's forward. And hoped that they would return to a place of trust after Artemis' intervention. A lot of the villagers were still shocked by the direct involvement of God's in the matter. Especially Artemis, who was known to not really show herself to people. And as for Ares, Xena and Gabrielle had told their friends about the god's continuous obsession with Xena but decided that everyone else didn't really have to know about their multiple run ins with the god of war. The two were just glad that now thanks to Artemis, Ares wasn't gonna be just showing up and causing more trouble for them for a very long time. So all in all life was good. Which was Gabrielle's exact thought as she looked around at her amazon sisters. She smiled as she thought of how quickly this place had become home. It had been a bit more than a half a year since their arrival at the village. She couldn't believe how quickly things had happened after she and Xena decided to stay there. From the slavers discovery and attack on the village. To being called to the Amazonian summit and facing the council due to the slaver attack. And then the murder of a council member and the destruction of the sacred tree, which sparked the war.
(Thinking to herself) Nothing can just be simple for us can it?
Gabrielle sighed contently as she pushed away the thoughts of their recent hardships. Things were good now and that's what Gabrielle wanted to focus on. Hearing Gabrielle sigh Xena held her a little closer.
For once, yes.
I was just thinking of how crazy things have been since we came here. Hopefully now we can just relax a bit for a change.
I'm sure we're good. After all how much trouble can one village be involved in anyway?
(Joking) With you two around who knows.
Gabrielle looked at Amarice and smirked. Knowing that trouble always seemed to have a way of finding them.
(Sarcasm) Very funny.
A number of the group laughed a little. All the usual women that Xena and Gabrielle mostly associated with were at the table. Skyla, Clover, Kai, Iris, Fauna, Ephiny, Amarice and Velasca. The group had all become fairly close the past number of months. Obviously the five that had lived and grew up in the village had been close friends for years. But Amarice and Ephiny had become fast friends with the other Amazon's. Even Valassca, who was more reserved and usually kept to herself didn't appear to mind the others, most of the time anyway. But with the village safe and no signs of trouble on the horizon, Gabrielle felt like life was good.
She had regularly began sharing some of her stories with the villagers. It felt nice to return to her story telling again. Gabrielle hadn't really done much writing since she and Xena had come to the village. Things were so crazy most of the time or she was busy dealing with her queenly duties. But after the war, Gabrielle felt a renewed vigor for her story telling and the village was more than happy to enjoy her performances. So some nights like this, after dinner Gabrielle would tell one or two stories to a usually crowded hall. Of which always ended in enthusiastic cheers and applause. Xena had also found a fulfilling role within the village. It was no secret that Xena had exceptional fighting skills. And most of the villagers had gotten to witness them first hand during the war. So many of the warriors or wannabe fighter's had begun to come to Xena for pointers and training. Where Xena was reluctant at first, eventually Gabrielle convinced her that it was a great idea. Especially with them not being on the road and nothing threatening the village. And since Xena was never very good at just sitting around with nothing to do. It felt like the perfect use for some of Xena's time. And once she had gotten a few sessions under her belt, Xena found that she actually really enjoyed showing some of the women in the village different fighting moves and techniques. Most of the sessions were done in the form of sparing matches. Both between the villagers themselves and sometimes Xena would step in and take on some of the more advanced fighter's. With none of them being able to actually beat Xena. Clover and Kai were among the women who had decided to join in on the training sessions. With Kai trying multiple times to try and beat Xena and failing every time. Until she eventually let her temper get the better of her and quit. Even Ephiny, Amarice and Velasca had found their own places in the village. The three had each decided on their own to make the village home for the time being. So that was life
in the village of the secret Saphire Snow Owl Tribe. And for Gabrielle and Xena, it was pretty good. As night fell on the village, a number of people began heading out of the hall and got to their homes. Including Gabrielle and Xena. Gabrielle walked up the steps and looked back when she didn't hear Xena's footsteps behind her. She saw Xena standing at the bottom of the stairs looking off in the distance. Her hand ready to pull out her chakrum.
After a moment Xena looked at Gabrielle and shrugged as she relaxed and walked up the stairs.
It's nothing. Thought I heard something. Probably just some animal running around. But it's gone now.
You don't think it's anything dangerous do you?
No there's too many people around for something like that to be here. Nothing would be considered easy prey. Plus nothing big is getting in here anyway with those cliffs surrounding us.
Well as long as you're sure it's safe.
Sorry to worry you.
It's okay. I know it's just instint for you.
Gabrielle opened the front door as she and Xena went inside. Xena took one more quick glance around just to ease her mind and didn't sense anything. So content that it was just her habit of being cautious she shut the door behind them as they entered the house. Not long after in the dark of night there was a quick rustle in the trees and then silence once more. Inside Xena and Gabrielle headed to bed with no notion that someone had infact been watching them from a far.
TO BE CONTINUED...
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