Copyright: The characters of Xena: Warrior Princess are owned by MCA/Universal and Renaissance and are used here without permission. No copyright infringement was intended in the writing of this story, it was written purely for the enjoyment of myself and other readers and I am not getting any profit out of it. The story itself belongs to me, and should therefore not be published elsewhere without my permission.

Sex and Violence: No violence, but there be sex, and it involves our favourite duo (two women for those of you who haven't figured that one out) so consider yourself warned.... if this isn't your thing or you're underage, DON'T READ IT! If it is, then by all means, grab a bucket of ice and read on... :)


By The Upside Down Kiwi-Bard (UDK_Bard)

The guards snapped to attention as the Conqueror strode into the hall without waiting for her presence to be announced. She was an impressive sight, tall enough to look any man in the eye. She was also strikingly beautiful, her icy blue eyes contrasting with her long raven hair that cascaded in silky waves over her intricately detailed armour and calf-length cape. At the other end of the hall, near a large banquet table, another armour-clad figure lounged lazily in an ornate wooden chair. He unconsciously straightened up at the Conqueror's approach, while trying to appear relaxed, adding just a hint of indifference for good measure.

"Xena..." He drawled. "To what do I owe the pleasure?" The warrior stopped a few paces away from him, her cape swirling briefly before settling around her. Shapely lips curved into a feral smile, revealing gleaming, even teeth that made her look somewhat like a predator.

"Oh let's not play games Pompey, I think we both know why I'm here." Her voice was deep for a woman, and richly laced with both humour and sensuality. Pompey returned her smile, his day was perhaps looking up.

"Games... Ahh, but Xena, to warriors like us, life is a game. We play it every day. It's a game of strategy, of power. Each player constantly trying to out-guess the others, taking the time to carefully study their opponents... and their allies." The Roman took a moment to do just that, allowing his gaze to travel down over her body to the toes of her polished leather boots and back up again, drinking in every detail. She held herself proudly, with no trace of humility or false modesty in her carriage. In an ironic contrast to the skirted tunic Pompey was dressed in, under her silver armour the woman wore a sleeveless leather top and trousers, both expertly tailored to follow the sleek contours of her muscled figure. A sword and scabbard adorned each hip although Pompey had on previous occasions seen them crossed over on her back with the hilts poking up over her shoulders, leaving room on her hip for her flying disk... now what was that thing called? Ah, the Chakram, that was it. To add the finishing touch to the ensemble, she wore black leather and silver bracers over her forearms, and had a sheathed throwing knife strapped to each thigh. Pompey had no doubt in his mind that the visible weapons were not the only ones she carried.

As a quiet cough brought his gaze back to Xena's face, and her slightly narrowed eyes and raised eyebrow brought his thoughts abruptly back to the here and now. He cleared his throat, resettling himself in his chair and trying not to feel like a boy caught spying in the women's bathing chamber.

"All right, I get the point Xena, no games." His voice lost its light teasing tone and became serious. "It's public knowledge that you have a personal vendetta against Caesar. Now that you've taken over all of Greece and most of the neighbouring regions, my guess is you're finally making a move against him and you want my army... am I right?" The eyebrow went up again, but this time accompanied by a much more pleasant expression.

"You really do take the time to study other players... don't you?" Pompey merely nodded, leaning casually back in his chair as she continued. "Yes, as a matter of fact I am going after Caesar, and yes, I'd like your co-operation... it's pretty well known that you have no love for him either."

"Oh don't mince words Xena, you know I despise the man." Pompey grinned, and waved the warrior towards the banquet table and chairs. "Have a seat won't you, and we can discuss the matter..." he waited for Xena to drag a chair out from the table and settle herself on it. "Can I offer you some refreshment? You must have been travelling for hours."

"Some wine would be nice, thank you." Pompey snapped his fingers and a guard was at his side in an instant. He gave the soldier a quiet order, returned his salute then dismissed him with a wave before turning his attention back to Xena.

"So fill me in Xena, why should I help you? What's in it for me?"

"You mean besides Julius Caesar's head on a platter?" Xena leaned an elbow on the table, idly tracing patterns on the wood with a fingertip.

"Yes. Once Caesar is out of the way, what's to prevent you taking my head next? No offence, but you do have rather a reputation for ruthlessness in pursuit of power. Forgive me for being a trifle nervous about handing that kind of power over to you." He held the Conqueror's gaze evenly, his expression neither threatening nor subservient.

"Look Pompey, I have no interest in Rome... I never have had. My only concern has always been the safety of Greece. Personal vendetta aside, Caesar's quest for world domination is a threat to my homeland, and I will do... anything... to stop him." Xena let that sink in for a moment. "If I ally with you, help you to take down Caesar, that puts you in a very powerful position, Crassus hasn't got a strong enough army to take on you and whatever is left of Caesar's army. You would have Rome in the palm of your hand." Xena held a hand out, palm up, and slowly closed it into a fist to emphasise her words.

"And what then? You take your army out of Rome and leave me to it?" Pompey let a note of disbelief creep into his voice.

"Precisely... once Caesar is no longer a threat, I'll withdraw my army and go home. As long as you remain no threat to Greece, I'll stay out of Rome. You can't ask for fairer than that can you?"

"Indeed... it's an interesting offer Xena. One I will be considering very carefully." he was interrupted by the entrance of a slave carrying a tray with plates of finger-foods and two wine goblets. A wineskin hung on a strap over her shoulder. "Ahh, here's our refreshments... perhaps we can discuss this further once we've had a bite to eat?"

"Why not?" Xena agreed, somewhat absently. Her attention had been captured by the slave who by this time had set her tray down, placed a plate on the small table by Pompey's chair and was now pouring wine for the Roman. The woman was small, with long golden hair, held away from her face by two braids that started at her temples and snaked over her ears before joining the rest of the red-blonde tresses. She was dressed in the fashion of a Roman slave, a skimpy white halter-top that revealed more than it hid, and a skirt designed to sit low on the hips, with a slit almost all the way up one leg. The girl was, however, most definitely not Roman, and from the quick glare she sent Pompey's way when he wasn't looking at her, Xena surmised that she wasn't too happy about being a slave.

"When did you start keeping Grecian slaves Pompey?" Although she was still smiling, the Conqueror's voice was low, with just a hint of a warning growl in it. Only the slight tightening around the man's eyes betrayed any sign of nervousness.

"Ahh, her... actually she's the only one I have. And if she's an example of the rest of them, I think I'll stick to the locals from now on. She's been... troublesome." By now the slave had moved to Xena's side to serve her. On closer inspection the warrior could see the fresh bruises on the girl's arms and face, in some places overlaying older, fading ones.

"So I see..." she reached out with the back of her hand to stroke a particularly dark bruise on the girl's jaw, but as the slave flinched away. Xena withdrew, instead taking the goblet from the girl's now violently trembling hand. This allowed the slave to hold the skin with both hands and thus prevented her spilling the wine as she poured. The slave lifted her eyes and for a moment Xena thought she saw a look of gratitude in the emerald depths. The girl's expression blanked and her gaze lowered too quickly for the warrior to be certain. She turned her attention back to Pompey. "Having a little trouble breaking her in?" This caused the slave to stiffen, and elicited a self-depreciating chuckle from the Roman.

"You could say that." Pompey sipped his wine, watching the girl as she stepped to one side. Obviously she had been ordered to stay there and refill their goblets if required. "Though she seems to be on her best behaviour at the moment. Perhaps she's heard of you Xena." Indeed it seemed as though the girl had, for out of the corner of her eye, the warrior caught another flash of green as the slave shot her another swift glance. Xena smiled.

"Perhaps... I am fairly well known back home after all." She raised an eyebrow good-humouredly as Pompey snorted into his wine. "Where's she from?"

"Somewhere in Macedonia I believe. Warlord by the name of Draco had what looked like a whole village for sale in port a couple of full moons ago. He was persuasive, I'll give him that. Anyway I ended up buying her. She's intelligent enough. She reads and writes, or so Draco would have me believe. So far I've had no proof... most of the time she refuses to even speak. I've never got so much as a name out of her. To be quite honest I don't know why I bother keeping her... except..." he sighed, "well, look at her."

"Hmm," having been given an open invitation, Xena rose and circled the girl. "She certainly is attractive." The warrior ran the edge of one finger down the back of the slave's bare arm and was rewarded with a shiver, though the girl tried to hide the reaction. "So have you had her yet?" She grinned as she heard a small gasp of fear as the slave caught the obvious meaning of her words.

"What, and have her fight that tooth and nail like she fights everything else?" Pompey chuckled. "Contrary to popular belief Xena, I don't force myself on anyone, not even slaves. I much prefer my women willing... even if it's only their training that makes them so." Xena nodded, already having known this. If it had been any other way she wouldn't be here making an alliance with him. "Maybe eventually I'll get her to that stage but for the moment I'm having enough trouble just getting her to do menial tasks." He let out a disgusted snort.

"Such a little thing..." Xena circled the girl once more, stopping behind her. She took the wineskin strap from the slave's shoulder, letting it drop to the floor, and replaced it with her hands, feeling the girl stiffen. "She's really that much trouble?"

"Trouble? Oh yes... never enough to give my trainers an excuse to whip her, but enough for the occasional beating, as you can see. Oh we've had everything from minor disobedience to outright defiance, plus escape attempts, dropped plates, spilled drinks, you name it. She's actually quite entertaining. I'm sure by now you've noticed the glares, and of course the only words we generally get from her are swear-words." He chuckled at this. "Tell me Xena, are all Greek women so contentious?"

"Only the intelligent ones..." Xena drawled, smiling dangerously at him and enjoying watching his poise falter slightly. "If you want docility, you're better going for the ones who were born into slavery. Macedonians and Thracians in particular tend to take exception to having their towns sacked and being turned into slaves." As she spoke, Xena began to gently rub her thumbs into the blonde's shoulders, she felt the girl start to relax a little, calmed as much by her words as her hands.

"Thracians... of course, you're from that region aren't you? Amphipolis wasn't it?" Xena could feel the curiosity radiating from the slave who was succumbing to her ministrations and had lost most of her wary edge.

"You HAVE done your homework. Yes I am from Amphipolis. As a matter of fact my town was attacked once by a warlord much like Draco, with the intent to steal everything and enslave us. That was what made me gather an army and take over Greece in the first place. My intention was to stop that sort of thing from happening again... to Amphipolis or anywhere else." Even as Xena's words relaxed the slave, they had the opposite effect on Pompey who was beginning to suspect that his ownership of a Greek slave was not doing much for his position in this new alliance. Xena chuckled, enjoying the Roman's discomfort.

"Oh relax Pompey, if you hadn't bought her someone else would have. I'm not going to go on a rampage and kill thousands of people just because they own slaves. I certainly can't blame you for wanting to possess such a... fine specimen as this one." Xena's voice dipped to a lower, seductive note as her hands slid from the girls shoulders down to her bare sides and then to her hips. What had begun as a massage had now become a caress. The warrior heard the girl's breath catch, and felt a small shudder run through her, but whether it was from fear or excitement Xena did not yet know. The gesture didn't go unnoticed by the Roman either, judging from the slight flaring of his nostrils that spoke of quickened respiration. He blinked, as if mentally shaking himself as Xena continued. "But I can try to stop the source. Thanks for the tip about Draco, I hadn't realised he was back to his old tricks. I'll be sure to look him up when I get home. I can't have him shipping all of Greece's beautiful women off to Rome now can I?" Pompey laughed, regaining his composure.

"Oh that wouldn't do at all... but then again, if they're all like her perhaps Rome is better off without them." His sly comment got a chuckle out of Xena, and what felt like a quiet growl out of the slave. Unobtrusively, Xena tightened her grip on the girl's hips, at the same time pressing against her. The sudden sensation of cold metal against warm skin made the blonde gasp and tremble again. Xena brought a hand up and hooked one side of the red-gold hair back over the slave's shoulder, exposing the pale skin of her neck. She then returned the hand to its former position on the girl's hip. The warrior shot Pompey a sultry smile over the girl's shoulder.

"Oh they're not that bad. In fact, that fire that makes them so hard to tame is what makes them so... exciting." Xena leaned forward and just brushed her lips against the curve where the slave's neck met her shoulder. This time her action elicited a breathy, almost inaudible moan, even as the girl flinched away. "You just have to know how to handle them that's all." The warrior's smile turned feral as she leaned forward again and gently nibbled the slave's ear. Pompey cleared his throat and licked suddenly dry lips.

"Well... if you're such an expert on the subject, do you care to give me some pointers?" He challenged, his voice cracking slightly.

"I thought you'd never ask..." Xena drawled. The slave suddenly seemed to realise the situation she had landed in. She stiffened up again and attempted to wriggle free, her breathing increasing along with her anxiety. "Oh no, you're not going anywhere." Xena wrapped one arm around the girl's waist, and the other diagonally across her chest, pressing the slave back against her armour. The slave grabbed Xena's wrists, trying to pull her arms away, "relax..." Xena murmured into the girl's ear, "I'm not going to hurt you... unless you want me to." This last was said in a purr as the warrior took the slave's earlobe fully into her mouth and sucked gently. The girl let out a small whimper, still struggling, but with decreasing force. It was plainly obvious that while her mind was saying fight, her body had another opinion. So far the mind was winning but Xena could tell it was only a matter of time. The warrior held the girl carefully, not gripping hard enough to hurt her, maintaining just enough pressure to ensure she couldn't escape. She bent forward to whisper again. "Come on girl, take it easy. You might even enjoy this... in fact," Xena suckled on the inviting earlobe again, "if you behave yourself I'll make SURE you enjoy it." The slave moaned as her body betrayed her by leaning back against the warrior, her head tilting to allow Xena greater access to her ear and neck. Of this, the warrior took full advantage, nibbling, kissing and caressing her way down the side of the elegant neck to the shoulder, and then running her tongue and teeth over it on her way back up. Meanwhile the arm that was across the girl's chest moved up to her other side and began working its way under the edge of the gathered fabric that held up the slave's top, easing it off her shoulder. The girl's head pulled abruptly away from Xena's lips with a gasp and her struggles began anew.

"Please... no... let me go..." the slave whispered. The quiet plea was the first time she had spoken since her appearance in the hall. The hand that had just finished exposing the slave's shoulder came up and the girl flinched, but the hand did not strike. Instead it cupped her cheek and jaw and drew her face around to meet the lips of the dark, seductive warrior in a crushing embrace. The fight in the girl lasted only a moment longer, and then with another moan, her eyes closed and her struggles ceased completely. Rather than relaxing, her grip on Xena's wrists tightened as her body trembled. Sensing her victory, Xena brushed her tongue against the girl's lips and found confirmation in how quickly they parted, allowing her to thrust inside. A muffled groan rose from the slave's throat as their tongues dueled, and underneath her hand Xena could feel the pulse in the girl's neck quicken. When Xena finally broke off the kiss, the slave let out a whimper of disappointment. She leaned her head back against Xena's shoulder and gasped for breath, her eyes still closed.

"Sooo... do you still want me to let go?" Xena purred, dropping her hand away from the girl's cheek.

"No." The slave whispered back, shaking her head as her hands now tried to pull the warrior closer.

"Good." Xena kissed her lips again, then began to lay kisses along her jaw and back to the much-nibbled earlobe that seemed to affect the slave so much. After sucking and running her tongue around the slave's ear, Xena looked up to flash Pompey a triumphant smile. The Roman was on the edge of his seat, and Xena could see the bronze breastplate straining with his heavy breathing. A light sheen of sweat covered his face and his eyes were slightly glazed. "Tell me Pompey... do you know how I came to be known as the Conqueror?" Xena asked, one hand now removing the slave's other shoulder covering while her lower hand shifted to lay flat on the girl's stomach. The muscles of the blonde's stomach rippled as she breathed, she was all but oblivious to the warrior's words. Pompey had to swallow several times before he could answer.

"Well that's pretty obvious isn't it?" He had to catch his breath as Xena bent to gently bite the slave's now bare shoulder, eliciting another quiet moan from the girl's slightly parted lips. "I mean, you're the Conqueror of Greece aren't you?"

"Mmmm, that I am." Xena agreed, stroking the slave's arm. "But the victory that earned me that name didn't happen on a battlefield." Now she moved her hand over to lay it, palm flat, on the girl's chest, just above the swell of her breasts. "It happened in far more... intimate surroundings." As if to illustrate, Xena's hand slid down over flesh and cloth and gently clasped the soft, firm globe of the girl's breast, feeling the nipple harden and strain against the taut material.

"I can imagine." Pompey scrubbed his hands up and down his thighs. He couldn't keep his eyes off the slave's face and body, watching her reactions. Her chest heaved, her abdomen tightened under the warrior's splayed fingers, and her hand had reached up to tangle in Xena's long black hair, silently begging for her to stop talking and renew the caresses. Xena was happy to oblige, resuming her neck-nibbling while her hand began to massage the soft flesh, listening to the girl's gasp of pleasure as her fingers found the erect nipple and gently pinched. She repeated this caress and pinch a few times, each time getting a stronger reaction. After a while she dropped that hand back to the slave's hip, and brought the other hand up to the opposite breast, this time trying to work her fingers up under the tight fabric. She was mildly annoyed by the cloth's refusal to yield, so as she leaned around to capture the slave's mouth again, she slid her other hand up the girl's back and slowly unfastened the knot that held the garment together. Unseen by both warrior and slave, Pompey's eyes bugged out as the cloth fluttered to the floor. As the cloth fell away, it revealed firm, pale globes and tight, pink nipples, one of which was immediately engulfed by the warrior's hand. Her tanned skin provided an enticing contrast to the lighter tone of the slave's flesh. His own hand, seemingly of it's own accord, crept up his thigh, moving ever closer to the tent that was rapidly forming in his tunic as his pleasure at the scene before him made itself known.

As Xena kissed the slave, her hand squeezed the girl's hip, mirroring the one on her breast, then it made its way around to stroke her butt and the back of her thigh. Her hand slid down, then she lightly dragged her nails over the cloth on its way back up. The slave moaned and pressed herself back against Xena, her knees weakening. The warrior ran her hand slowly back down the thigh again, fingertips feeling for the slit in the skirt that ended just below the girl's hip. She found it and slid her hand a little way inside, finding more warm, firm flesh there and earning another moan from the slave who was now kissing her with increasing fervour. Xena pulled away and turned her attention back to the ears and neck as her hand slid further in. She bent her knees slightly to reach down and caress the girl's inner thigh, starting just above her knee and working her way upwards. The slave stared at the ceiling, her face shining with a light sweat, her mouth hanging open. The quiet whimpers and moans came much more frequently now as her whole body began to tremble with a growing need. Slowly, tantalisingly, Xena's fingertips moved up the smooth, warm skin until finally they met with soft, wet curls. As the fingers pressed ever so slightly against the sensitive area, the slave gasped, her legs almost giving way underneath her. The warrior dropped her left hand back to the firm abdomen, pressing the slave once more against her armour as her fingers moved down and in, encouraging the girl's legs to part. They did, and the hand slid back to cup the slave's damp mound, rubbing back and forth just a little, teasing. The moans grew louder and more distressed, and the girl's hips began to twitch, trying to move against the warrior's hand. Xena took pity on the slave's distress and pressed her fingers in further, finding their way past now soaked curls and into the warm pool of fluid that coated the girls centre. She began to move her fingers in long, leisurely strokes, leaving no place untouched. She delighted in the feel of the silky warm flesh and the almost desperate sounds the slave was making as her hips rocked against the strong fingers.

Xena darted a quick glance at Pompey, the Roman had lost every trace of his earlier composure, he was sweating and panting, a look of raw desire on his face. He had discarded his armour by now and the former wandering hand was now slowly stroking his own need through the cloth of his tunic. Xena caught and held his gaze and smiled, drawing her fingers out of the girl's centre and bringing them to her mouth, sucking eagerly at the thick, salty-sweet liquid that coated them and humming her pleasure. This action earned her a disappointed noise from the slave and a deep groan from the watching Roman.

"Turn around." Xena told the slave, her own desire deepening her voice to a growl. As the slave complied, the warrior moved around with her, staying behind the girl and guiding her until they were both side-on to Pompey. "Put your hands on the table, like this." Xena took the girl's hands and placed them palm down on the tabletop, a little more than shoulder width apart, which forced the slave to bend forward slightly. "Now spread out your feet a little more." She inserted her knee between the slave's legs and nudged them apart to about the same distance as her hands. "How's that, are you comfortable?" She asked, running her hands over the girl's back, rubbing her shoulders and the muscles down her spine. The slave nodded her head, groaning with pleasure. "Good..." Xena purred, reaching under the girl to squeeze her breasts again. At the same time she pressed her own aching centre against the firm backside, allowing herself a small measure of relief as she continued her caresses. The slave moaned and leaned backwards, unknowingly increasing the pressure against Xena's centre in her effort to press her own against the warrior's thigh. Xena closed her eyes and just enjoyed for a few moments, squeezing the blonde's nipples as she rocked against the slave's butt, pressing her thigh in to give the slave the same pleasure. She could smell the girl's arousal, and the taste of her lingered, making the warrior want more of it. Deciding the time was right to take things to the next level, Xena slid her hand to the side of the slave's skirt above the slit and began to undo the fastenings that held it closed. A few moments of deft finger-work later, the skirt came loose. Xena moved back just far enough to remove it and toss it to one side, leaving the slave as naked as the day she was born. Before the slave had time to react to her nudity, the warrior grasped her hips with both hands, pushing down on them as she brought her own thigh up, pressing it firmly into the girl's centre. The slave let out a deep, throaty groan, thrusting against the rock hard thigh in short, jerky movements, once again stimulating the warrior's own seat of desire. Xena had to pull back before the urge to thrust her way to climax against the girl's backside became too great.

"Stay there." She ordered in a low tone, stepping away and quickly stripping off her cloak and armour, draping the cloak over the back of her chair and dumping the armour on the seat. Her swords clattered to the floor as she removed and dropped the belt that held them, and she kicked these under the chair as well before returning to the slave. Instead of standing behind her, this time the warrior ducked under the girl's arm and knelt facing her. She reached up and pulled the blonde's head down, tilting hers up for another kiss. She thrust her tongue deeply into the girl's equally demanding mouth as her hands returned to the tempting breasts, slowly bringing the girl back up to fever pitch. Finally deciding she had teased the slave long enough, Xena left the blonde's lips behind and she began to kiss her way downwards, stopping briefly to suck hard on each hard nipple, enjoying the desperate moans this elicited. She continued on down until at last she was face to face with the golden treasure she desired. Reaching up one hand, she slid her fingers into the wetness, watching as the lips parted, revealing the silky pink flesh, darkened by the girl's arousal. This also brought a fresh wave of the delicious, musky scent to tantalise her nostrils. She leaned forward and breathed deeply, letting the aroma stimulate her own desire, before finally moving in to lightly press her lips against the sensitive flesh. She grasped the slave's hips, supporting them as the girl's legs trembled, threatening collapse, but they held firm. Xena repeated the caress, this time snaking her tongue out to lick the delicious skin. The girl's breath grew shallow and her hips began to twitch and rock as Xena caressed her. Her tongue following the path earlier travelled by her fingers, lapping at the intimate flesh in long, leisurely strokes. Gradually she increased the speed and pressure of her strokes until the slave's moans were constant, and the thrusting of her hips turned jerky, signalling that she was close to climaxing. She brought her hand around, feeling for the blonde's entrance while slowing down her tongue, delaying the impending orgasm. As her fingers probed, she met with resistance and sighed inwardly, removing them again.

"Please..." the slave whispered, then repeated the plea, begging, "please do it." Xena groaned quietly in her frustration. She had suspected the girl was a virgin, and had the slave belonged to her she would not have hesitated. But she belonged to Pompey, and Conqueror or not, it was considered the height of bad manners to deflower someone else's slave, it halved the value should the owner want to sell her later. Still, if she was careful... she replaced her caressing tongue with stroking fingers for a moment and ducked her head briefly to glance at Pompey. His hand had disappeared under his tunic at some point and he was now stroking himself rhythmically. He was obviously enjoying the floor-show, so much that he didn't even notice the warrior watching him. Xena smiled and turned back to the panting, writhing slave she was busy pleasuring. She slid her tongue once again between hot, velvety folds and lapped eagerly at the copious juices she found there. Teasingly she ran the tip of her tongue around the tight, oozing entrance, then prodded gently, ever so slightly entering. The slave groaned deeply and pressed against Xena's face, willing the tongue deeper. But Xena withdrew and slid away to lightly stroke the small, sensitive nub, instead pressing just the tip of one finger against the tight entrance. The slave whimpered slightly, the sound of intense desire intermingled with fear. Leaving her hand where it was, Xena shunted herself back and knelt up to kiss the young blonde.

"Relax, it won't hurt, I promise." She stroked her fingers up and down in the slick wetness a few times and watched the slave's eyes close. Xena cupped her free hand around the girl's cheek, running her thumb over glistening, parted lips, feeling the rapid breathing tickling the skin of her face. She moved her fingertip back down to the girl's vaginal opening and pressed again. "Do you want this?" The eyes flew back open and locked with hers.

"Yes... please." She begged, her desire-darkened green eyes gazing into the crystal blue of the warrior's as her hips began to press down, trying to impale herself upon Xena's questing digit. The warrior pulled back, holding the girl's gaze and flashing her a stern look.

"Ah ah..." she stroked the rosy lips again. "Don't move... I don't want to damage you. And if you move too much, I might by accident. You understand?" The blonde nodded, her expression one of near desperation.

"I understand... please... I need..." boldly the blonde leaned forward and captured Xena's lips, thrusting her tongue into the warrior's welcoming opening, trying to convey the depths of her need by the sheer force of the kiss. Xena returned the kiss with interest, feeling her guts clench as the lust that she had kept so carefully leashed again threatened to spiral out of control. She clamped her free hand to the back of the slave's head, tangling roughly in the long red-gold hair and pulling her even harder into the fierce lip-lock. She sucked hard on the girl's tongue while her fingers danced to their own beat in the wetness further down. Xena clamped her teeth around the slave's lower lip, just hard enough to cause discomfort, but not pain, and was rewarded by a primal groan that found it's echo deep in the warrior's guts. They both broke off, leaning forehead to forehead, gasping for breath. Xena wondered what it was about this girl that so affected her self-control, nobody had ever driven her this close to the edge. She had to use every ounce of will she possessed to cage the beast within, clamping down on the urge to take the girl, sate her cravings and damn the consequences. And just when she thought she finally had it tamed, she looked up and almost lost it again as she found the same emotion mirrored back to her. There was no longer any trace of innocence in the emerald green eyes that held hers, only pure animal lust.

Tearing herself away, Xena lowered her head to the girl's breast, sucking hard and biting on a nipple. She knew she was driving the slave to the brink of sanity by denying her the release she now desperately craved. The slave groaned, biting her bottom lip, no longer able to form words. As Xena continued to nibble and suck on the firm breasts she began to slowly and carefully push her index finger into the girl, mindful not to tear the fragile ring of muscle, to only stretch it a tiny bit. This action elicited an open mouthed, guttural moan from the trembling blonde. Xena had finally reached the limits of the slave's endurance. Shifting her weight to one hand, she used the other to grasp the warrior's hair, pushing her down. At last Xena obeyed, once again returning to the blonde's centre, teasing the hard nub with her tongue while her finger slid slowly in and out. The slave's moans jumped an octave, and she began to push forward with her hips, pressing as hard as she could against the warrior's tongue.

The slave's body began to shudder, jerking, and Xena had to wrap an arm around the girl's hips to hold them still so she could concentrate her efforts and prevent damaging her. As the blonde finally reached the point of no return, Xena settled her mouth firmly on the girl's clitoris and sucked hard. The slave's head tilted back, her muscles clenched, and she let out a loud, primal scream as her orgasm crashed over her, sucking her into a maelstrom of pleasure so intense she could barely breathe. Xena never slowed her tongue or hand, causing a second orgasm to follow, and then a third, sending wave after wave of ecstasy through the trembling girl. After what seemed an eternity of agonising bliss, the warrior slowed and ceased the movement of her tongue and carefully withdrew her juice-coated digit. The warrior moved back just in time to catch the spent girl as her knees buckled. She collapsed into Xena's arms, one arm over the warrior's shoulder, the other draping around her waist, sobbing as the last waves of pleasure jolted their way through her shuddering body. Xena held her close, stroking the sweet smelling hair and whispering nonsense reassurances that the girl probably couldn't even hear over her own harsh breathing. Looking up, Xena spotted her cloak and reached for it, wrapping the girl up in it and rocking her until her breathing steadied and her body ceased its quaking.

Movement nearby caught the warrior's attention, it was Pompey, standing up and adjusting his clothing. Evidently he had reached a climax of his own unnoticed by the two woman, for his steps were unsteady as he walked to the table and snagged the discarded wineskin. He collapsed back into his chair, and poured himself a goblet of wine. He raised it in a silent toast to Xena and took a long swallow, leaning back in his chair and closing his eyes, sighing contentedly. Xena glanced down at the slave, realising she had gone very quiet and wondering for a moment if she had fallen asleep. The girl was staring into space, her expression completely blank, her even breathing the only sign of life. Xena frowned, inexplicably concerned.

"Hey..." she said in a voice too low for the Roman to hear, and nudging the girl gently. "Are you okay?" The blonde head slowly turned to face her, the glazed green eyes staring at her uncomprehendingly. Xena had only seen that expression once before, on a soldier who had taken a bad hit on the head and had been knocked almost senseless. She realised that something similar must have happened to the little blonde, she'd been so overwhelmed by the sensations that she was temporarily stunned. She put a hand on the girl's cheek, patting it gently. "Hey, come on, come back." Slowly the glaze faded from the eyes and the intelligence returned. Xena helped the slave to her feet and picked up her clothes, helping the dazed girl to dress. The girl continued to stare at her, the blankness now completely gone, replaced by a look of awe, and something else she couldn't quite identify, something close to adoration. Xena was used to getting similar looks from people she had seduced and from soldiers in her army. It had always made her feel powerful, like she owned them, but somehow from this girl it felt different. A little uncomfortable, she turned to Pompey.

"Now... where were we?" She began, settling back into her usual drawl. "Ahh, I remember, we were about to discuss the terms of our alliance, were we not?" She raised an eyebrow, smiling, and Pompey waved his hand dismissively, grinning.

"Later Xena, have your people meet with my people. Let's let them work out all the boring little details." He took another long swallow of his wine, then got up and strode towards her, holding out his arm. Xena clasped it in the traditional manner. "It'll be a pleasure fighting at your side Xena, whatever the terms." He flashed her another boyish grin and released her arm after one last squeeze.

"And you Pompey." Xena said, returning his smile with a slightly more subdued one. She turned to pick up her armour and strapped it on, then fastened her belt around her hips, settling the swords in place. The back of her neck prickled, and she turned around, realising that the eyes of the slave had never left her. For a moment the warrior was mesmerised, caught by the expression in those glowing emerald eyes, so full of trust, and desire, and love. Xena's heart gave an odd thump, and she looked away, no longer able to face the blonde. For the first time in too many years, she felt ashamed by her actions. In order to get what she wanted from Pompey without really letting him have what he wanted, she had calculatingly used this innocent girl. Her years of experience and practice had made it all too easy to seduce the slave. Just because the girl appeared to have enjoyed it did not, in Xena's eyes, make the act any less despicable. She had won the trust, aroused the desire, and ended up getting more than she bargained for. Cursing inwardly, she reached for her cloak, flipping it around her shoulders with practised ease. A whiff of scent caught her nostrils, and she realised it was the same sweet, fresh smell that lingered on the slave. Despite herself, she inhaled deeply, her body reacting. Turning back to Pompey, she realised he had watched the brief interchange, and she knew she had to leave quickly. Her alliance with him was not yet set in stone, and he might not be too happy about his slave's apparent infatuation with the warrior princess. Setting her best warrior expression on her face, she saluted him.

"Well, I had better be going. I'm sure we both have important business to attend to. Until next time Pompey." She bowed slightly and turned to leave, unable to resist one last glance into those beautiful green eyes. They were filling with tears, once again silently begging her. Please don't leave me, take me with you, they seemed to say, and instantly Xena knew that if it were within her power she would. But at the moment she just couldn't take the risk, she needed this alliance too much to lose it for a pretty girl. Maybe after Caesar was out of the way... Xena shook herself, dismissing the notion, the campaign was likely to take years. By then the girl truly would be a slave, the fire in the green eyes long dead. For just a moment, Xena allowed the regret she felt to show on her face, feeling she owed the girl that much, and through the tears, she saw understanding and forgiveness in the green eyes. The warrior swallowed a lump in her throat and strode past the slave, her heart sitting heavily in her chest. She felt like she was walking away from something important, but was unable to decipher what it was. She was just a slave wasn't she?

Wasn't she?

She would probably never know.

As she reached the door, Pompey's voice stopped her.

"Xena wait!" the warrior groaned inwardly and turned, watching Pompey stride towards her. She wondered what else he wanted and hoped he would be quick so she could get out before she changed her mind and challenged him to a duel for the slave. He stopped about half way, as if he had run out of energy. "About the girl..." he began. Xena steeled herself, gritting her teeth and looking for a diplomatic way to placate the man's ego.

"Yes?" She asked, keeping her voice steady.

"Why don't you keep her?" He said, smiling at the questioning look in the warrior's eyes. He shrugged, "look, you seem to have figured out the best way to handle her. In the space of a candle-mark, you've done what I never got close to in two full moons. I seriously doubt I'd ever get a repeat performance out of her. Plus I have a feeling that on top of the stubborn streak, now she'll be pining after you for months..." he sighed. "Frankly Xena, I just don't need the headaches. Just take her will you? Consider her a gift, in honour of our alliance." He stepped to one side, gesturing towards the slave with an outstretched hand.

"That's... very generous of you." For one fleeting moment she considered refusing, knowing that she was in some sort of danger here. Then she looked up, and caught the dawning hope in the green eyes, and she lost the battle before it even started. She turned back to Pompey, unable to hide her smile, "thanks." She closed the distance between them and clasped arms with him once more. Then, gesturing for the girl to follow her, she turned and strode out of the hall, feeling a spring in her step that she hadn't had in years.

"No problem." Pompey answered, a slightly melancholic smile on his face. In his mind he pictured the look of love in the slave's eyes that was for the warrior alone. He hoped that one day if he was lucky, he might find a way to inspire that look in someone himself. He followed the pair to the door and watched them disappear down the long hall towards his palace gate. As they went, their voices echoed back to him.

"So by the way, what IS your name?" The warrior drawled. "I can't just keep calling you girl all the time." The slave chuckled, a delightful sound.

"It's Gabrielle... Gabrielle of Potidaea." She answered cheerfully.

"Gabrielle... that's a nice name." That was the last Pompey heard as they turned a corner and disappeared from sight and sound. He chuckled, having the distinct feeling that this slave was going to wreak havoc in the life of a certain warrior princess. He also had the feeling she wasn't going to mind a bit.

And he was right.



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