The following story contains adult themes depicting sexual relations between two consenting adults of the same sex. If you are under the age of 18 or reading this material is illegal where you live, please do not read any further. The writer as well as the person who maintains the webpage this work appears on accept no legal responsibility for noncompliance with this warning.

The characters of Xena and Gabrielle are copyrighted to MCA/Universal. They are used here without intent to profit from or infringe upon this copyrighted material. The rest of the story is copyrighted to me (posted February 27, 1997--L.N. James). Absolutely no original aspect of this story may be used elsewhere without the expressed prior written consent of the author. This story may not be altered in any way and this copyright information must appear with this work at all times.

"Circle Dream" copyrighted to 10,000 Maniacs. Used without permission.

Magnetic North

By L.N. James


The rain was neverending. For the past three days, the sky had opened up and it was as if the gods had left the water running. The usually lush green landscape was now clouded in a gray mist. Leaves were heavy and dripping with moisture. The streams were beginning to swell in their banks. The wet, humid air smelled of the earth that had been stirred by the rain’s dance. It seemed as if all creatures great and small had sought refuge from the storm wherever a dry place could be found. Two such creatures found themselves holed up in a cave in some outcroppings of rocks just below the rise of a mountain.

Xena sat cross-legged in front of the non-existent fire absentmindedly stirring it with the one remaining stick they had. Their dry wood had been spent in the middle of their second day of captivity. Luckily it really wasn’t that cold but damn if Xena couldn’t use a cup of tea. She had at last exhausted all possible activities this morning when she had meticulously scrubbed, polished and shined Argo’s saddle twice over. As it was, the warrior princess would have to be cautious that her own armor didn’t blind poor Gabrielle should it ever see a ray of sunlight again. There’s nothing worse than a warrior who has nothing to do with her hands.

For Gabrielle’s part, she had been quite content to spend these rainy days archiving their adventures. She was still trying to catch up on their latest epic adventure with Valesca and Callisto so she welcomed the down time. She felt fortunate to have spotted the cave just before the rain clouds moved in. Fortunately, one of Gabrielle’s greatest abilities seemed to be finding some sort of harbor in the middle of any tempest.

"Gabrielle, I’m going crazy trapped in here. Are you sure you won’t reconsider?"

Gabrielle looked up and smiled over at her restless warrior.

"Xena, you know as well as I do that I won that bet fair and square. I chose to be dry as my prize and I will not budge. Besides, you wouldn’t want to get a reputation for not covering your bets now would you?"

Gabrielle grinned over Xena. She knew they were staying put, high and dry. A warrior never reneges on her word. Yes, this temporary shelter would be theirs until the rain stopped.

Xena narrowed her eyes at the stubborn bard and tried to give her a fierce look. As hard as the warrior tried, she could never quite muster a look any meaner than mild annoyance with Gabrielle. The way her blue eyes gleamed and the corners of her mouth held back a smile always betrayed her heart.

"Gabrielle, you did not play fair. There was absolutely no way I could have known you could do something like that."

The young bard’s hazel eyes sparkled as she smiled back at Xena. She put down the scroll she was working on and stretched her arms above her head. Oh, how she was enjoying this.

"Well, my warrior princess, let this be a lesson to you to never underestimate the talents of a bard’s tongue."

Gabrielle reached over into her bag and pulled out proof of her prowess. In the palm of her hand, she admired her handiwork—a perfectly knotted fig stem she had tied in her mouth with her tongue. She laughed as she tossed it over to Xena. She certainly wouldn’t tell the warrior that she and Lila had practiced tying knots in fig stems for hours when they were young. They never knew why they did it, but at the time, they thought it seemed the thing to do. Kids...


The warrior growled at the bard as she caught the stem—captive in a cave because of some parlor trick! Even though she was starting to feel cooped up in there, she was a little glad they weren’t trudging out in the downpour. Traveling in foul weather made both of their moods gray. She would give in to Gabrielle every once in a while. Besides, she had won their bet. Still, Xena was getting restless...

"Since you’re such a talented little bard my dear, let’s hear a story. I need something to help pass the time away. And make it something I haven’t heard or lived before."

Xena smiled over at Gabrielle and leaned back on her hands. She stretched out her legs in front of her and made herself comfortable. She had long ago taken off her armor and wore only her leather. She was unfettered by even her boots, greaves or gauntlets. She had her hair tied back loosely and her blue eyes were bright. Even though she wasn’t used to such inactivity, it did do her well to get a few days of rest and relaxation. A warrior does need her beauty rest every once in a while. (Gabrielle would probably claim that Xena must have been asleep all of her life to have gotten where she’s at in the beauty department).

Gabrielle grinned as the bard’s calling was requested—to tell a story Xena hadn’t heard before. The challenge of it was the best part. Every time Xena thought Gabrielle had exhausted all of her stories, the bard would pull another one out from her ever imaginative mind. Of course, she didn’t always claim the stories were true.

"Hmmm..a story you haven’t heard before. Well, let’s see...there’s the one about how Poseidon helped two lovers..."

"..get back together by making waves. I certainly remember that story Gabrielle!" Xena interrupted the young bard with a laugh.

"I was just testing you!" Gabrielle smiled. She knew that story was one of Xena’s favorites.

"Ok here’s one. This one was passed down to me by my great uncle Metriculas who heard it from his second cousin twice removed about a unicorn."

"A uni-what? Gabrielle, you don’t lie very well." Xena shook her head at the young bard.

Gabrielle just smiled sheepishly. She loved teasing the warrior princess.

"Ok ok...I wasn’t going to tell you this story until the time was right, but since you are being so difficult.."

Xena raised an eyebrow as Gabrielle continued.

"I learned this story while I was at the Academy. It was written long ago, so long ago that no one really knows who wrote it. But it has been passed down throughout the ages. Some say that the story is older than even the mountains themselves."

Xena nodded her head and smiled at the young bard. Gabrielle always had a way of putting words to things Xena never could. For Gabrielle, words were her soul and whenever she shared them with Xena, the warrior felt like she was being given a precious piece of Gabrielle worth more than all the gold in the world. On a rainy day such as this, there was nothing brighter than the way the bard lit up as she told her stories.

Gabrielle stood up in the cave to give her performance. If her audience was never any larger than one, Gabrielle would still be long as that one was Xena. She smoothed out her skirt and ran her hands through her red-golden hair. The barefooted bard took a deep breath and began. As she spoke, her eyes remained on the warrior.

"In the days before we walked the land, the gods set the elements loose in motion. The air and the water and the earth all came together and were happy and in harmony. Each would dance with the other and laugh as they played together. This continued for some time until one day the air and water were having so much fun running together that they forgot about the earth and started racing further and further away. The earth tried to keep up, but soon it saw it could not. The earth sat down and cried because it had lost its two friends. It felt abandoned and betrayed and alone. So it decided it would never leave the spot where it had been left behind. The air and the water seemed so carefree and happy together that the earth was jealous of their friendship."

Every word the bard spoke left her lips with precision, every breath was timed perfectly. Her voice ebbed and flowed filling the cave with a sweet melody. Each syllable found itself drawn into the warrior, like the air rushing in. Gabrielle moved closer to Xena as she continued her story.

"Now, there were tiny pieces of the earth that wanted to try to rejoin the water and air but the rest of the earth would not allow it. The earth punished those parts of itself that tried to escape and follow the air and water by burying them as deep and as far away from the air and water as it could. To make sure they would not escape, the earth kept piling itself up on top and tried to crush its own playful, loving spirit. The air and water never meant to leave the earth behind; they hadn’t realize their own exuberance. They tried to apologize over and over again but the earth would not listen. It’s heart had become stone. However, the playful spirit of the earth still remained buried deep and the air and the water never gave up hope that they all three would be united again."

Gabrielle paused and watched Xena lean in towards her, listening to her words. The bard’s eyes were bright and her gestures were animated. Her cheeks had a slight flush to them that they usually got when she was in the middle of a story. Plus she knew the warrior had never heard this one before.

"When the gods saw that the three elements were separated, they thought of ways to help the three reunite. They knew that only together could they each find peace and harmony. It was then that the gods saw that mortals were the key to restoring this elemental bond. If the gods could give each mortal a piece of the three elements to carry with them, it might help the elements come together again. It is said that there are special mortals who were blessed by the gods. The gods had mined the earth to recover those special pieces of the earth that had been long buried but that so desperately wanted to be reunited with the air and the water. As a gift, two mortals are given a piece of this earth to carry with them and whenever two of these mortals meet, the elements pull and push them together so that the three are finally able to rejoin. You see, when the earth buried parts of itself, it created something new, something even more powerful. Because when it tried to bury its playful spirit, the spirits of the air and the water were buried with it. These new pieces of earth were twice as attracted to the air and the water because of this. And so, when two mortals meet who each share this unique combination, the attraction between them is something that is beyond their control."

Xena looked up at Gabrielle standing in front of her as she finished her story. Watching Gabrielle speak with such ardor always stirred something within the warrior. Everything the bard did was full of life and passion. To Xena, these qualities drew her to Gabrielle with as much force as any battle ever did. The battle and the bard aroused the warrior in separate but equally compelling ways. In Xena, Gabrielle inspired the same desire for control. If she could tame the young bard like she could any enemy, she wouldn’t have to worry about losing her own equilibrium. As it was, the grasp she had on her own emotions concerning Gabrielle was tenuous at best. While they certainly exchanged power between them, there were times when Xena had to keep herself (and the bard) in check. And when her bard spoke passionately to the warrior through her words, Xena had to fight to keep from being consumed.

Xena’s blue eyes spoke volumes as she held out her hand to the bard. Gabrielle knew the look in Xena’s eyes as she moved over in front of the warrior and took her hand. Sometimes when she was with Xena, all she wanted to do was dive into that blue water. She was willing to be swept into Xena’s storm as she allowed herself to be tossed and turned. Other times, Xena would be the one drifting on Gabrielle’s shores but tonight neither knew where the water and the air and the earth would take them.

Xena brought Gabrielle’s hand to her lips and softly kissed her palm. Gabrielle looked down at the warrior and put her other hand in soft, dark hair as Xena lightly touched Gabrielle’s wrist with her tongue. She looked up at the young blond woman before and above her with eyes full. A small smiled played on Gabrielle’s lips as she looked down at her warrior. She knew it was only a matter of time before Xena blew her away.

Xena kept her eyes locked into the green of Gabrielle’s as she pulled the bard down to her knees on the blanket Xena had been sitting on. Forgotten was the rain outside and the once confining walls of stone around them. The warrior moved so that she was kneeling facing the bard as well. This time though it was Gabrielle who looked up at Xena.

Xena reached around and loosened the tie that held her jet black hair back and shook it out as she ran her hands through the dark length. Her disheveled mane framed her bronzed face and her smoky eyes. She made sure Gabrielle was watching her every move.

The bard could not have looked away even if she wanted to. Every subtle movement Xena made became the focal point of Gabrielle’s sea-green eyes. She took in the slightest flex of a muscle, the smallest toss of hair. Xena’s beauty had always commanded her attention, especially when that beauty betrayed the raging storm below the surface. She was sure that the warrior had this elemental effect on her from the dawn of time.

Xena reached her hand to one of her shoulder straps that held her leathers up. She gently pushed it off her shoulder so that it lay draped against her upper arm. She slid the strap on her other shoulder off as well so that her smooth shoulders were bare. The curve of her neck down along her collar bone caught Gabrielle’s eye. So many times before she had placed a trail of kisses from the warrior’s jawline down her neck and across that shoulder. She was just about to lean in and do this when Xena stood up.

"Sit back for a second, love."

Xena’s voice was low and smooth as she purred out this request. Gabrielle did as she was asked and sat back on the blanket in front of Xena. Her green eyes never leaving the warrior’s own blue. Xena stepped back a bit and reached around behind her to loosen the ties of her leathers. She leaned forward just a bit while she did this and her long mane of dark hair fell forward in front of her. Much to Gabrielle’s dismay, the mass of long hair hid the warrior’s breasts from her view. Dark against light hiding a glimpse of what Gabrielle most wanted to see.

Once the ties were loosened, Xena stood back up. She was magnificent and tall. The dim light of the gray outside did nothing to stop how radiant she appeared in front of Gabrielle. Luminous beauty such as the warrior’s was not something that could be hidden. Gabrielle’s eyes took it all in...Xena’s long legs, her thighs just below the leather skirt, her bare arms free of gauntlets, those shoulders so smooth, and of course a face that held a look of love only for the young bard. Sometimes Gabrielle was almost so overwhelmed by her good fortune at being the object of Xena’s affection that she half-expected to be wakened from this all too real dream. But then, the warrior did something to remind Gabrielle that she was not dreaming. In fact, she was far from sleep that was for sure.

Xena slowly slid her leathers down over her breasts making sure Gabrielle’s attention was focused only on one thing (well, two, really). With her eyes locked on the young bard’s face, she eased her hands to her hips and pushed the leather the rest of the way down making sure she caught the thin black breeches she had on under her skirt as well. The leather fell from her hips and landed at her feet. She slowly stepped out and stood in front of the young bard in all her shining glory.

For Gabrielle, the sight of the warrior’s perfect body hit her like a landslide, hard and fast. She was sure there was nothing else on this earthly plane or on Mount Olympus that could compare to Xena. Two breasts were full—dark centers contrasted against the softer, lighter roundness. While her leather certainly outlined the curves underneath, Gabrielle’s breath was always taken away when her eyes were allowed to feast on the field of smooth, muscled skin across the warrior’s belly. Her hips were shapely and followed a perfectly curved line down the side of her thighs. Gabrielle could barely let herself look at Xena’s darkness hiding where her storm resided. The young bard closed her eyes and took a deep breath. Her heart and her mind raced at the image. It was clear that Gabrielle’s physical response now rivaled the rain outside—a flood like no other.

" your eyes, Gabrielle"

Xena’s voice was soft and low, almost a whisper. She needed the bard’s eyes on her, she needed to know that Gabrielle liked what she saw. Any doubt was erased when she saw Gabrielle’s face hold a look that told her everything she needed to know. She could see the bard’s serious green eyes tell her that she was all Gabrielle needed.


Gabrielle’s voice was thick with emotion, clearly indicating exactly what she needed. She started to move towards the warrior; she had to touch what so clearly was the fuel of her own fire.

"Stay, I’ll come to you."

Xena looked at the young bard and smiled. Sometimes Gabrielle was a little too impatient and it was up to Xena to slow her down. The warrior loved how Gabrielle approached everything she did passionately and unrestrained. However, Xena knew that the sweetest things come to those who wait.

The warrior walked slowly over to where Gabrielle was now kneeling and stopped in front of her. Gabrielle looked up at Xena’s face with her brow wrinkled, cheeks flushed, and eyes pleading. The overwhelming sight of Xena without her leather standing in all her height and majesty would be enough to bring even the gods to their knees let alone a young bard.

"Give me your hand, sweet"

Xena reached out her hand to take Gabrielle’s. She smiled down at the bard while her blue eyes sparkled. Xena took the smaller hand and held it gently. She could almost feel Gabrielle’s racing pulse in her fingertips. She could definitely feel the bard shaking, as if a cool breeze had chilled her. Far from it though, Gabrielle was warmer than all the campfires they had ever built combined.

"Would you like to feel what you do to me, Gabrielle?"

A rhetorical question of course as she led the bard’s hand to where she challenged the swollen streams outside their cave in the amount of water she held. Xena held her breath as she felt the bard’s tentative fingers gently slide over the flood that threatened to consume them both. She heard Gabrielle gasp as her fingers made contact with the warrior’s warm, wet skin. Sometimes the young bard was sure she had died and gone to Elysium.

Gabrielle withdrew her hand from the warrior’s own and lightly tasted the sweet ambrosia. Gabrielle’s eyes closed briefly as she never quite got over how the warrior tasted. It was more powerful than any potion Aphrodite could conjure up. Xena looked down at Gabrielle and smiled at the bard’s response. She knew exactly what her sweet storyteller wanted and needed.

Xena slowly kneeled down in front of Gabrielle and looked deeply into the eyes of her lover. It seemed Gabrielle could no longer form a word even if she had wanted to, though to be honest, what Gabrielle wanted to do with her mouth and lips was anything but speak. After having felt and tasted Xena, she suddenly realized she had had enough of this waiting business.

Xena was on her back before she knew what hit her. Gabrielle had thrown herself at the warrior and managed to gain the upper hand. The young bard’s sudden weight on top of Xena had caught her off guard but she wasn’t about to fight this determined young woman.

"Well now Gabrielle, so much for being patient."

Xena laughed as she smiled up at the blond on top of her. Gabrielle had taken hold of Xena’s wrists and held her arms down above her head. She stopped smiling rather quickly when she felt Gabrielle’s thigh move up between her legs. The bard leaned in and spoke quietly in the warrior’s ear.

"It’s your turn to be patient, Xena"

Gabrielle’s warm sweet breath against her ear and a thigh making its presence known made Xena shudder just a bit. Gabrielle pulled back so that her face was just above the warrior’s own as she looked down into the ocean below her. Each knew that they were pulled and pushed towards each other by forces more powerful than either could fight. They had long ago given up the battle and had accepted their deeper connection as destiny. Rock solid, water tight, and breathless. This love was magnetic.

Gabrielle leaned down and lightly touched her lips to Xena’s. The kiss was soft and warm like a cloud resting lightly on the warrior’s lips. Xena was always surprised at how gentle Gabrielle could kiss. The warrior could never quite get over the young bard’s touch—sweet, innocent, loving all combined. It was all that more exciting when it was contrasted by Gabrielle’s capture of power and control over the warrior.

Gabrielle pushed further into Xena as her tongue moved into the warrior’s mouth. Xena could only allow herself to be kissed deeply and passionately by her young bard. A small moan escaped the warrior as she slowly moved her hips against the bard’s thigh. Gabrielle pulled back from the kiss and looked down into Xena’s closed eyes. She could tell that Xena was doing her best to restrain herself. She let go of the warrior’s wrists as sat back a bit so she was straddling Xena’s leg. Again, the god of foresight was thanked as Gabrielle wore nothing under her skirt so Xena could feel her bard’s wetness.

"Open your eyes, dear"

Gabrielle’s voice was a low soft request Xena could not turn down. She slowly opened her eyes and looked up at Gabrielle. The young storyteller’s face was flushed and smooth. Xena watched as Gabrielle started to untie the laces to her green top, her small hands working the ties. The warrior placed her hands on the top of Gabrielle’s thighs as she waited for Gabrielle to reward her eyes. The bard opened the her top and removed it as her eyes never left Xena’s. For the warrior’s part, she could not keep herself from taking in the sight of Gabrielle’s breasts. The curves just below and underneath her breasts were perfect. Xena never stopped loving the look and shape of her bard’s breasts.

Gabrielle’s hands then went behind her waist as she loosened the belt strap that held her skirt in place. Xena loved the way Gabrielle’s skirt hung low to her hips, showing off her smooth curves and rigid stomach muscles. The warrior reluctantly felt Gabrielle lift up from her thigh as she slid the skirt down her hips and moved it out from around her legs. Her thigh wasn’t lonely for long as Gabrielle settled back down on the warrior.

Xena’s hands gently went to the tops of Gabrielle’s thighs as she lightly touched where her red-blond bard’s legs met her hips. A flash of lightning outside from the rain storm suddenly illuminated the cave. Even though it was still daylight, the dark of the rain storm made the cave brighten with the flash. Both women jumped slightly at the rumble and looked out towards the sky. Xena turned back and smiled up at Gabrielle who was still looking to her side towards the cave entrance.

"It’s a good thing I decided to make us stay in the cave huh?"

Xena chuckled as she said this and squeezed the bard’s thighs. Gabrielle turned and looked down at Xena and smiled.

"Right. Thank you."

Gabrielle shook her head at the warrior. She was not about to let this distract her from the task at hand. That flash of lightning had made something catch the bard’s eye. She turned to her right and leaned over to pick something up from the ground near their blanket. She turned back to Xena and held up it up in her hand. Another flash of lightning from outside illuminated the object. Gabrielle smiled down at Xena.

"Gabrielle, what are you doing with my chakram!?"

Xena smiled at the bard who so boldly handled her prized weapon. Only in Gabrielle’s hands, this weapon was no longer something deadly. In the bard’s hand, the circle of metal became something more.

" mean this?"

Gabrielle touched the flat side of the circle to Xena’s upper arm, chilling the warrior’s flesh with its coldness. The bard’s eyes were playful as she watched Xena narrow her eyes at her.

"Yes, that."


The cold circle moved the length of Xena’s arm and travelled lightly over the warrior’s stomach. Xena flinched in response to how cold the metal was against her skin. Goosebumps immediately formed on her thighs. Gabrielle continued the slow journey of the circle up and over one of Xena’s breasts, immediately causing a nipple to stiffen at its touch.



Xena closed her eyes and took a deep breath as Gabrielle moved the cool metal over her other breasts which responded in kind. The bard never ceased to amaze her.

Gabrielle moved the circle up and let it lightly follow the curve of the warrior’s shoulder to her neck. Xena shuddered at the touch, loving the cool feel of metal against her skin and loving more that Gabrielle had discovered this pleasure. Xena opened her eyes as she looked up at the bard and put her hand on top of Gabrielle’s. The bard moved the circle slowly across the side of Xena’s cheek, loving the way the silver and gold looked against her love’s bronze smooth face.

Xena took Gabrielle’s hand and guided the circle back down her shoulder and over one of her breasts. She gasped as the metal lightly rubbed against her nipple, sending shockwaves through the warrior. Gabrielle moved her hand slightly so that the tip of one of her fingers touched the edge of the metal and the warrior’s nipple. She leaned down towards Xena as she moved the ring over a bit so that it encircled Xena’s breast and lay against her skin. The gold and silver circle framed the perfect breast as Gabrielle’s lips took in the nipple.

Xena let out a low moan as she felt the warmth of Gabrielle’s mouth take in her nipple and her hands immediately went into the bard’s blond hair, pulling her closer. Gabrielle bit lightly on the taut flesh and Xena cried out a little louder in response. The sound of her warrior when they made love was music to Gabrielle’s ears. Luckily for her, the stone walls of the cave echoed those sounds.

"Harder, Gabrielle"

Xena managed to gasp this out through clinched teeth. She pulled the bard closer as Gabrielle sucked in Xena’s nipple with more force, raking her teeth over the sensitive flesh. She took Xena’s breast in her free hand and moved her thigh back to between the warrior’s legs. She felt what could only be described as a volcano—hot liquid against her thigh. This warrior inspired in her something raw and elemental.

Gabrielle managed to pull herself away from the warrior’s grip and roughly push Xena’s hands from her. She let go of the circle and left it where it was. She had more pressing issues she wanted to attend to as she tried to move down to that lava flow she had found. Unfortunately, one doesn’t just push a warrior’s hands away and expect to get away with it. Xena took hold of Gabrielle’s shoulders and pulled her up towards her and rolled her over on her back. The now warm metal circle managed to find itself resting between the two well developed abdomens. Some rings get all the luck.

At this point, neither Gabrielle nor Xena was going to let the other one win this power struggle. Luckily for both, it was a game in which they both came out winners regardless. The kiss that followed was almost animal, so passionate and unrestrained. Each wanting more of the other and demanding more from the other. Tongues fighting each other, hands moving for space over each other’s back. Gabrielle cried out as she felt Xena’s nails rake against her back. The young bard roughly grabbed one of Xena’s breasts and squeezed a nipple. The warrior let out a low moan and pushed further against Gabrielle.

Their pace became frantic as each moved for space against the other, looking for ways to take as much as each could give. Their bodies drawn together, glued together, bonded They rolled over to their side and reached out for touch. Xena shifted a bit so she could put her hand where her bard most needed her as Gabrielle moved with the same motive. This movement dislodged the silver-gold circle and it rolled quietly away from the tangled lovers.

Gabrielle’s low moans in Xena’s ear matched the thrusts of the warrior’s fingers inside the bard. Xena herself let out barely restrained growls as Gabrielle found a perfect rhythm with her hand against the warrior. Neither noticed it had stopped raining and they wouldn’t have been able to tell anyway as they both equaled the entire downpour combined. Their bodies were slick with sweat and their hands were covered in each other’s wetness. A cool breeze moved through the cave hardly cooled down either one of them. The hard ground beneath them might as well have been a feather bed for all they noticed.

Xena’s teeth found Gabrielle’s shoulder as the bard moved deeper inside of her. Gabrielle would have bit Xena’s neck as well but she feared losing her blood innocence. Each of them would be lucky to come out of this with minimal injuries the way their passion drove them.

Gabrielle started to cry out a little louder as Xena’s fingers found their mark. Rough, forceful and raw. Gabrielle’s own hand moved against and inside the warrior with as much power as she could deliver. Luckily for both Xena and Gabrielle, the bard’s developed muscles were up to the challenge. Each delivered exactly what the other wanted in exactly the way they needed it.

Complimentary, elemental, magnetic.

Each soflty held their breath before they both cried out as they felt the other release and the floodgates open. Their hands moving in time to the others need, each inspiring the other with their response. Nothing could have kept them from that moment together, nothing could have separated them. The cave reverberated with their cries. If it were possible, the ground would have shook as a testament to the strength of their union.

Slowly, the warrior and bard’s breathing started to return to normal. Each had buried their heads in the crook of the other’s neck where it met their shoulder. Neither had the strength left to move any part of their body.

Gabrielle was first to place a soft kiss against the warm flesh of Xena’s shoulder. She loved this warrior almost more than life itself. In fact, Xena was such a part of her, she doubted she would have a life without her. These feelings ran deep and strong within the young bard because everything she did, she did with intensity and passion. She gave Xena every piece of her heart and soul with as much generosity and love as she gave the world her stories. This is what made her who she was.

Xena gently lifted Gabrielle’s face towards her own and placed two small soft kisses on the bard’s close eyelids and one to the side of each temple. She looked into Gabrielle’s green eyes and kissed her gently on the lips. Xena wanted nothing more than to handle the young bard with care but sometimes her warrior passion overwhelmed even her. Xena knew though that Gabrielle was not a delicate flower and that she sometimes needed and wanted the warrior to let loose on her. Xena’s love for this bard could have conquered all of Greece in its power. Her heart could hold Gabrielle safe and she would fight fiercely for that love. This is what made the warrior who she was.

"I love you, Gabrielle, more than anything in this world."

Gabrielle looked at the warrior and heard the words she would never get tired of hearing. She smiled softly at Xena as her green eyes spoke volumes.

"I love you too, Xena, with all my heart."

Xena stroked Gabrielle’s honey-red hair as they closed their eyes in each other’s arms. Gabrielle nuzzled her way closer to Xena so her face rested between the warrior’s soft breasts. She kissed Xena lightly and spoke a few sleepy words of a disconnected thought. Xena heard her and smiled softly...the words of her bard were always pieces of her soul, the elements combined.

"I dreamed of a circle, I dreamed of a circle round. And in that circle was a face, her eyes looked upon me with fondness. Her warmth coming near, calling me sweetness, calling me dear.."



Colophon: The writing of this story was greatly aided by two long, stressful travel days flying half-way across the country contemplating how intimately involved air, wind, water, earth, and metal really are. May you never look at Xena’s chakram in quite the same way again. -LN



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