Copyright Notice:

Xena, Gabrielle, Callisto, Joxer, Amarice, Eli and all other original characters who have appeared in the syndicated series' Xena: Warrior Princess &/or Hercules: the Legendary Journeys together with their names, titles and backstory are the sole copyright property of MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. No copyright infringement was intended in the writing of this fan fiction. However the story idea and the story itself are the sole property of myself.

Author's Notes:

The following story was completed in December of 2000, however the idea was conceived over a year earlier in late 1999.

It's events takes place directly after the XWP season 4 episode 'The Ides of March'. The following story should be read as if 'The Ides of March' was the last episode that ever aired, and as if season 5 and 6 never took place.

Feedback is always welcome and appreciated.

Eternal Destiny

Part 1

The leaden skies of the Ides of March gave way to Winter's last stand, as a light steady snow fell upon the Roman prison compound on Mount Amaro.

Inside the prison yard a group of crosses stood with the crucified bodies of prisoners still hanging on them. The prisoners guilt or innocence played no bearing in the crucifixions, only Julius Caesar's hate for one woman, Xena the Warrior Princess, weighed on the decision.

Yet in Caesar's desperate attempt to forever separate his destiny from Xena's, Brutus, along with the Roman Liberator's, took Caesar's own life before the Senate of Rome in a last ditch effort to preserve the dyeing Republic.

  As word of Caesar's assassination quickly spread throughout the region and to the prison compound on mount Amaro, the mass burial of the crucified prisoners was put on hold and the prison compound abandoned.

As the snow continued to fall, a lone figure emerged from the curtain of white. The lone figure, wearing a long black hooded robe, slowly approached the crosses.

The hooded figure, stopped at the base of Xena's cross and gazed upward towards lifeless body the Warrior Princess. The hooded figure then reached for his hood and lowered it from his face, revealing himself to be Ares, the god of war.

Ares glared up at the lifeless body of Xena as he softly whispered, "Xena . . . I will not let this go unpunished."

Ares then took a few more steps toward the cross, then with his last step he heard a faint clanging sound. Ares gazed down and  noticed that he had stepped on Xena's weapon, the Chakram. Ares removed his foot from the Chakram and curiously looked at the weapon which was partially covered in snow.

   The god of war slowly knelt down and with his hand brushed the snow away from the Chakram. Ares stared at lone half of the broken weapon for a moment, then reluctantly picked it up and slowly stood back up.

Ares then glanced around in hopes of finding the other half of the weapon just as sorrowful female voice rang out from behind him. "I can't believe there dead big brother."   

  Ares quickly turned around and saw his sister, Aphrodite, the goddess of love mournfully gazing up at the crosses.

"What do you want Aphrodite?" Ares said in a disgusted voice.

"Like, duh!" Aphrodite said with a bit of sarcasm in her voice. "They were my friends too." She then walked over to Gabrielle's cross as a tear rolled down the goddess's cheek.

Ares stared at Aphrodite as he shook his head. "Oh please . . . they're not my friends . . . ."

"Like, whatever," Aphrodite interrupted her older brother, "I know how you feel about Xena."

Ares gazed up at the Warrior Princess and said, "Purely business Aphrodite."

Aphrodite then rolled her eyes. "Oh sure!"

The blonde goddess then sighed and said, "Oh no. I better go find Joxer."

Ares nodded as he sarcastically said, "Yeah, you do that."

Aphrodite then snapped her fingers and disappeared in a flash of gold dust.

After a few moments, Ares slowly gazed back up at Xena and whispered, "This is far from over Xena. I promise you that."

Then as voices echoed from high on the ridge that overlooked the prison yard, the war god quickly turned and glanced upwards at the ridge and saw several figures approaching the prison compound.

  Ares looked back up at Xena's body and in a determined voice said, "I'll be back Xena."

Ares then waved his hand and a bright flash of god-fire engulfed the war god, but instead of disappearing, he just flickered as the half of the Chakram he held became charged with electricity and glowed blue for a few seconds . . . then he, along with the Chakram appeared normal again.

Ares looked at the half of the Chakram both confused, and a bit angrily. he took a deep breath and attempted to disappear again. But once again, he simply flickered as the Chakram became charged with electricity, glowed blue for a few seconds and then they appeared normal again.

Ares chuckled to himself, almost as if he anticipated what was happening.. The war god then reluctantly dropped the Chakram, waved his hand and successfully disappeared.

From high on the ridge overlooking the prison yard and the crosses, Amarice on horseback, quickly turned to Eli who was on foot. "Did you see that Eli?"

Eli sadly looked up at Amarice. "See what? "

"There was someone down there."

Eli looked up at Amarice and shook his head. "No I didn't see anyone!"

"Yeah there was someone there and then he disappeared."

Eli's eyes widened as he looked at Amarice. Amarice then took a deep breath, and slowly nodded. "Yeah . . . I know! It sounds crazy . . . Just, just forget it. Let's just get down there and get Xena's and Gabrielle's bodies down."

Amarice began to ride down the hillside when Eli yelled, "Wait! What if there are still guards down there?"

Amarice pulled on the reins to stop the horse. She looked back towards Eli a bit surprised and said, "What are you talking about' Eli?"

"Maybe we should wait and make sure the guards are really gone."

     "No!" Amarice shouted. "I'm not going to leave them on those crosses for one more minute. Besides, there's no one down there. They've all been called back to Rome,"   

Eli reluctantly nodded. "All right."

"Good," said Amarice, "then let's go." Amarice then rode off down the hillside to her friends as Eli followed behind on foot.

Meanwhile, a determined Ares reappeared in the halls of Tartarus. "Hades," shouted the god of war.

"Hades where are you?"

Ares drew his sword as he screamed once again for Hades to appear. "Hades, I demand your presence here right now."

After a few silent moments a voice echoed throughout the caverns. "Ares, what do you want?"

Ares turned around and quickly approached Hades who was standing next to a large boulder. "Hades I want an explanation."

  Hades shook his head as Ares continued. "I want to know why you let Callisto out, and I want to know why you let her kill Xena?"

Hades shook his head as he tried to explain. "Ares, I didn't let Callisto out"

Ares raised his eyebrow curiously. "What?

"Do you mean she escape?"

Hades began to pace as he said, "She didn't escape either . . . the last time I had Callisto was just before Hera gave her that reprieve to kill Hercules."

Ares sheathed his sword and looked at Hades as if he were nuts."Wait a minute. She was killed with the hind's blood dagger. She died! So . . . If she didn't come back here then. where did she . . . .?"

Ares paused for a moment as he became lost in thought. The war god then swallowed as he shook his head in denial. "No . . . that's impossible."

Ares then took a deep breath to compose himself then said, "I want to see Xena!"

Hades shook his. "Xena's not here either."

A look of concern crossed Ares face as he said, "What?"

Hades nodded. "It's true. She didn't come through here. Which means we have a serious problem."

Ares then remembered seeing the broken Chakram, and in a concerned voice said, "What do we do about the Chakram?"

Hades shrugged his shoulders. "That's your responsibility Ares, not mine. You got us into this mess, now you'll get us out."

Ares glared at the god of the Underworld for a moment, then turned and began to walk away.

"Ares," Hades said, "only the immediate family knows the truth about the Chakram, let's keep it that way!"

Ares gazed back at Hades, gave him a cold stare and sarcastically said, "A lot of good that secret will do you now!" Ares then took a few more steps, waved his hand and in a flash of god-fire, disappeared.   

to be continued . . . .

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