"Together Forever"

By Aurora

Copyright Disclaimer: All characters that have appeared in the syndicated series Xena: Warrior Princess belongs to MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. No copyright infringement was intended in the writing for this fan fiction.

Subtext: None--what, are you kidding me?

Violence: None--yep, not this time. What a bummer.

Sex: None--just ‘cause there’s no sex, doesn’t mean there can’t be kissing.

Rated G

Date Written: December. 28-31, 2000

E-mail: axbfeaurora@hotmail.com

Author’s Note/Summery: After Ares is released from Dahak’s control, he decides to ask Xena something that could change her life forever. This is the last story in the trilogy. It is the sequel to Trapped By Evil.



PART I: Words of Truth

*~* Chapter 1 *~*

Only a few days had past since Xena and Ares had expressed their love for one another. Xena and Gabrielle had decided to stay in Thebes for a few days. It felt good to get some rest and relaxation from their normally hectic lives. They had checked into an inn and they were glad that no one had asked for their help.

Xena and Gabrielle sat in the dinning area that night. They had already had dinner and it was getting late.

“So, what happens now?” Gabrielle asked her friend. “I mean, you proclaimed your love for Ares and he has done the same. Are you two going to…you know?”

“Gabrielle, we love each other but I don’t think that I am ready for a lifetime commitment with him.”

“I understand. But Xena, when I was in love with Perdicus there was no doubt in my heart that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him.”

Xena smiled at Gabrielle across the table and then stood up.

“Well, it has been a long day. I’m going to bed. Goodnight, Gabrielle.”

“Goodnight, Xena. See you in the morning.” Gabrielle replied.

Xena turned around and walked out of the dinning area. She made a right turn and headed down the hallway towards her room. When she opened the door, she found the room filled with bouquets of red and black roses and candles illuminating every wall.

“Ares…” She whispered under her breath.

She knew that he had been there. Xena closed her eyes and inhaled deeply, sinking deep into the wonderful smell the roses created. Normally, she was not one to stop and smell the flowers but because she knew that they came from him, this was different. His love for her was expressed in each and every rose.

Xena opened her eyes and walked over to the dresser. She stood in front of the mirror and opened the drawer. She retrieved a brush and slowly began to run it over her hair.

Xena was so deep in thought that she hadn’t even felt Ares’ presence enter the room and before she knew it, he had appeared behind her. She looked at his reflection in the mirror.

“Hello, Ares.”

“Good evening, my dear.”

Ares moved her raven hair away from her neck and began to kiss the soft skin there. Xena sighed contently and lifted his head, kissing his lips briefly.

“Thank you for the roses. They’re beautiful.”

So are YOU, he thought. “I thought you’d like them. They came from Aphrodite’s garden. Only the best for you and they will never wilt.” Ares said, smiling at her.

“Why have you come?” Xena asked.

“I’ve come to give you something.”

Ares opened his hand and a small box suddenly materialized in it. It was nothing fancy, just a plain, ordinary wooden box. Xena was a little surprised at what she saw, thinking that it would be something elegant.

“THIS is what you’re giving me?”

“Of course not, Xena. Open it.”

Xena lifted the latch and opened it. Inside was a stunning blue diamond necklace. At the end of the silver chain were a serious of blue diamonds that formed a heart and in the middle was a small silver representation of Ares’ old symbol. The necklace sparkled brilliantly in the candlelight and Xena was speechless. A tear fell from her eye and rolled down her cheek.

Ares lifted his had and wiped the tear away. She looked deep into his eyes.

“Ares…it-it’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.”

“It took me an eternity to find those blue diamonds. They’re very rare. I’ve had that necklace kept away since the first time I saw you. I hoped that one day I would be able to give it to you.”

“Thank you, Ares.” She said, laying it down on the dresser.

“There is one thing that I want to ask you.”

“What?” Xena asked curiously.

Ares stepped back from Xena.

“Xena, I love you very much. You know that. I want to be with you for as long as I am on the face of this earth and…I was wondering, since you feel the same way, if you would ever consider…marriage.”

Xena’s eyes widened. She didn’t know how to respond.

“Ares, are you asking me to marry you?”

Ares was silent for a moment. “Yes…I want to marry you, Xena. Will you?”

Xena was speechless. In her heart, she knew that she loved him and that she wanted to be with him, but she had never been tied down before. But she knew that she had to follow her heart wherever it lead her. That’s what Gabrielle would tell her to do.

“Yes, Ares. I will marry you. I’ve never loved a man in all my life as much as I love you.”

Ares smiled gladly and pulled Xena into a loving huge. “I love you so much.” He said.

Xena stepped back and then held his chin in her hands. “I love you too.” She replied, kissing him lovingly.

When they parted, Xena walked over to the closet and took off her armor, placing it inside. She then walked over to the bed and sat down. Ares followed and soon he was by her side. Xena sighed heavily.

“How am I going to live with you, Ares? You are a god and I am mortal. I don’t want to die and leave you all alone.”

Ares held her hand tenderly. “I don’t want you to leave me either, Xena but the only way we could be together forever is if you too were a god. I could give you ambrosia and--”

“That would be wonderful, but I can’t just leave Gabrielle. She’s my best friend.”

Ares sighed. “I understand. We don’t have to decide now.” Ares turned his head away from Xena for a moment. “When do you want to have the wedding?”

“Spring is a wonderful time to have a wedding but I don’t think I would be able to wait that long. I want to be with you now.”

“How about we get married next week. It can be held on Olympus and it will be the most spectacular wedding in history.”

“Great, then it’s settled. I’ll tell Gabrielle in the morning.” She said, sleepily.

Xena leaned against Ares, her head resting on his chest. She was fast asleep in seconds. Ares gently picked her up and laid her down on the bed, pulling the covers over her. He leaned forward and softly kissed her forehead.

“Sweet dreams, my love.” He said before disappearing into the darkness.

*~* Chapter 2 *~*

The next morning a warm breeze blew in through the open window and across Xena’s face. Slowly, she opened her eyes and there in front of her was none other that Ares.

“Sleep well?” He asked, sitting beside her.

Xena sat up, still not completely awake.

“Incredibly well. I haven’t slept that well since…since I was a child.”

She slowly got out of bed and went over to the closet to retrieve her armor. When she’d put it on, she walked over to the dresser and picked up the necklace Ares had given her.

“I can still not believe how beautiful this is.”

Ares stood up and walked up behind her.

“Let’s see how it looks.”

He took the necklace from her hands and put it around her neck, fastening it at the back. He pulled her hair back so that it wasn’t hanging on her shoulders and then looked into the mirror.

“See, Xena. The color matches your eyes perfectly.”

Xena just smiled and then took it off.

“I think it will be best if I wait until our wedding day to where it. It will have more meaning then.”

She placed it back in the box and then safely put it in the drawer. She turned around to Ares and kissed him on the cheek.

“Come on. Let’s go tell Gabrielle the good news.”

Ares put his hand around her waist and smiled at her before heading for the door.

*~* Chapter 3 *~*

Gabrielle was in the dinning area having breakfast when she saw Xena and Ares walk in together. They walked up to the table and sat down.

“Good morning, Gabrielle.” Xena said happily.

“Morning, Xena. Did you sleep well?”

Xena glanced at Ares and smiled slightly.

“Yes…very well.”

Gabrielle could see happiness in Xena she’d never seen before. It was unusual for her. “You seem awfully cheerful this morning, Xena.”

“That’s because I have wonderful news.” Xena paused and looked at Ares, holding his hand. “You know that Ares and I both love each other very much, that the depth of our love is pure and true. Gabrielle, Ares and I have decided to get married.”

Gabrielle was surprised to say the least. It wasn’t that she didn’t understand the deep love between them, she did, but she was just surprised to see Xena deciding to take on such a commitment.

“I’m very happy for you, Xena. Congratulations. But I thought you said that you were not ready for such a commitment.”

“I was wrong.” Xena said, kissing Ares.

“When do you plan to get married?”

“Next week. The wedding is going to be held on Olympus and it will be like no wedding you’ve ever seen.” Ares replied.

“Olympus? Wow, that is going to be spectacular. I’ll be looking forward to it.”

“Me too.” Xena said.

When Xena and Gabrielle had finished breakfast, they left the inn. Ares followed them.

“Well, my dear, I’d better get to Olympus and begin the preparations.” Ares said.

“Yeah, there is a lot of planning for us to do as well. See you in a week then.” Xena replied.

They kissed passionately before he disappeared in a shower of blue sparkles.

*~* Chapter 4 *~*

Ares soon appeared on Olympus. He had no idea how to prepare a wedding and he knew that only one person would be able to help him--Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love.

He walked down the hallway towards his sister’s room. He knocked on the door.

“Aphrodite, I need to speak with you.”

“Come in.”

Ares opened the large golden doors and walked in. The room was very bright, a row of candles on every wall. There were sheets of silk draped from the ceiling giving the room a very elegant look. There were bouquets of pink and white roses throughout the room and in the middle of the room was a small table with fruit on it. The smell of lavender filled the air. At the far end was a large silk bed and behind it was a large window that overlooked the sea.

He found Aphrodite sitting at her dresser next to the bed in front of the large mirror studded with diamonds. She was combing her hair as usual, having always been conscious of how she looked. Ares walked up to her and she turned around to see her leather clad brother before her.

“What’s up, Bro? How are things going with you and the warrior babe?” She asked cheerfully.

“Well, in fact, that’s just what I have come to talk to you about.” Ares paused for a moment as Aphrodite’s eyes began to widen in anticipation of what’s to come. “Xena and I have decided to get married.”

Aphrodite jumped up. “Oh, this is soooooo romantic! I wondered how long it would take for you two to finally get it together and realize that the love between you is strong enough that you would consider marriage. I am so happy for you!” Aphrodite squealed as she hugged her brother tightly. When she had finally let him go, she took a step back. “So, when’s the wedding?”

“In a week. I was hoping you would be able to help with the preparations. I know NOTHING about weddings.”

“Of course, I’ll help. We’ll have to find you some cloths. After all, you can’t where THAT to the wedding. Not that there bad, it’s just there not wedding material. I’ll prepare the decorations and I can get the other gods to join in. This is going to be so much fun! We’ll make it the greatest wedding in all eternity.” She put her arm around Ares. “Just think. This is the first time that a mortal and a god will be united by marriage. The story will be told for eons to come--the God of War learned how to love enough that it brought him into marriage. Most people would think that war is not capable of love but you’re proving them wrong, Ares.” Aphrodite let Ares go and then looked at him. “Oh, this is so exciting!” She said, giggling.

“Thanks, Sis.”

“No prob. Let’s go tell the others.” She said before disappearing.

Ares just grinned before he too disappeared.

*~* Chapter 5 *~*

Xena stood in the stables brushing Argo and thinking about her future.

“I love Ares and I want to be with him for the rest of my life, but that would mean that I would have to leave Gabrielle and I don’t want to do that. If I become immortal and live out eternity with him, I will have to watch all of my friends and family grow old and die but if I stay mortal, then Ares will have to deal with the thought of loosing me one day. I don’t want to cause him pain; I love him so much. What should I do, girl?” She asked her horse as she rubbed it’s soft nose.

Gabrielle had been standing next to the door, listening to everything that Xena had said. Her friend hadn’t known she was there.

“Xena…” Gabrielle said, walking into the stables.

Xena turned to look at her friend as Gabrielle walked up to her.

“…don’t worry about me. If you want to become immortal so that you can live forever with Ares, then it’s all right with me. I know how you feel, Xena. I would give anything to have Perdicus back and to live out my life with him. I’ve always believed that you should follow your heart wherever it leads you and if it leads you into an eternal life with Ares, then that’s okay with me.”

“Are you sure? Becoming immortal would mean that I would live with Ares on Olympus. I would still visit you but it would not be the same.”

“Xena, our old lives will never be the same after you get married no matter if you are mortal or not. Everything will change but if you’re happy then I am happy. We’re soul mates, Xena, nothing will change that.”

“Thank you, Gabrielle for understanding. Whatever I decide, you are still the best thing in my life. You will ALWAYS be my best friend.”

Xena took Argo’s reins and walked out into the sunshine. She mounted Argo. “Come on, Gabrielle. We’ve got a lot of people to tell about the wedding and only a short time to do it in.”

Xena helped Gabrielle onto Argo and then they were off, galloping out of Thebes.

PART II: Vows of Love

*~* Chapter 1 *~*

After a week of anticipation and excitement, the wedding was finally upon them. Everything was prepared and ready for the big event. Xena was at her mother’s house getting ready. Cyrene walked over to Xena who was standing in front of a mirror.

“Xena, I’m so happy for you. I can’t believe that your getting married to the God of War after I thought you’d never get married. Of all the people, you choose Ares.”

“You do understand that he’s changed and that I love him very much, don’t you Mom?”

“Yes, but it is still hard to believe that war could ever love.”

Xena began to brush her hair. Cyrene walked over to her bed and retrieved a small box from under it. She walked back to her daughter.

“Here, Xena. I want to give you something. Call it…a wedding present.” Cyrene said, handing the box to Xena.

Xena put down the brush and took the box in her hands. She blew the dust off of it and slowly opened it. Inside was a small blue and white beaded bracelet. It was plain and simple, but beautiful nonetheless.

“That bracelet has been passed down through my family for almost five generations. It’s a family heirloom and now I’m giving it to you. I was waiting for the best time to give it to you and I think there’s no better time then now.”

Xena put it on her wrist and hugged her mother. “Thank you, Mom. I’ll treasure it forever.”

“Xena…have I got the dress for you. I know you’re not much one for dresses but you’ll change your mind when you see this one.” Gabrielle said, standing at the doorway.

Xena was very curious. Gabrielle was right, she had never liked wearing dresses but it was different now, it was her wedding day. Gabrielle walked into the room holding a long light blue dress. It was sleeveless and it sparkled along the triangular neckline. The shoulder straps and the hemline along the bottom of the dress were ruffled.

Xena walked over to Gabrielle and took the dress from her.

“Gabrielle…it’s beautiful. It really is. It must have cost you a fortune. Thank you.”

“You’re welcome, Xena. After all, it is your wedding day, only the best for you, my friend. Oh and they have shoes to match.” She said, showing her the shoes.

Gabrielle handed her small blue shoes.

“Well go one, Xena. Try it on.” Cyrene told her as she and Gabrielle left the room.

Xena walked over to the bed and set the dress down. She took off her armor and laid it on the bed. She took her chakram and her sword and laid them next to her armor. “For once, I won’t be needing my weapons.” She said to herself.

Xena took off her shift and put on the dress. She slipped the straps over her shoulders and then walked over to a table in the corner of the room. On it was the box with the necklace that Ares had given her. She opened it and took out the gorgeous necklace. Xena put is on and then walked over to the mirror.

She could not believe how beautiful she looked. The necklace matched her dress perfectly. Tears began to build in her eyes but she held them back. She never thought that she would be this happy in all her life. Xena slipped on the shoes and then walked out the door.

She slowly walked down the stairs into the main room where Cyrene and Gabrielle were waiting for her. When her mother saw her, she and Gabrielle walked up to Xena.

“You look absolutely beautiful.” Cyrene said.

“Xena, I’ve never seen a necklace so beautiful in all my life. Where did you get it?” Gabrielle asked.

“Oh, this. It was a gift from Ares. The stones are rare blue diamonds. It symbolizes our eternal bond.”

Gabrielle smiled at her. Xena walked up to both of them, putting her arms around them.

“Thank you both…for everything.” Xena said, hugging them.

*~* Chapter 2 *~*

Up on Olympus, Ares too was in his bedchamber, getting ready. Instead of his traditional black leather outfit, he now wore a black silk vest and pants. His long curly hair was neatly held back behind his ears and his goatee and mustache were neatly trimmed. He looked very handsome and regal.

Ares walked over to his bed and sat down before hearing a knock at the door.

“Come in.”

The door opened and Zeus walked in. Ares looked up at his father and sighed.

“You look great, Son. How do you feel?”

“Nervous. I don’t know why, I love Xena more than anything but--”

“But you’re just wondering what your life will be like once you’re married.” Zeus interrupted, sitting next to his son. “I remember when I felt like that. But trust me, your life will only get better once you’re married.”

“It’s not that, Dad. It’s just that these feelings are so new for me. I am war, I’m not supposed to love and yet here I am about to get married. It’s just strange.”

“But you love her?”

“Yes, more than I can even say. I’ve never found someone so strong, someone so beautiful, and someone who reminds me of myself. We are so alike, it’s scary but that’s what makes her so special and unique. There will never be another like her.”

“Well, I’m so happy for you, Ares. Xena has changed you in ways I never thought you would. I’m glad you found her.”

“Yeah, me too.”

Zeus stood up and walked to the door.

“Hey, Dad.” The King of the Gods turned around. “Thanks.”

Zeus nodded his head before exiting the room. Ares walked over to the mirror on the wall.

“Yeah. I am one lucky man.” He told himself before disappearing in a flash of blue light.

*~* Chapter 3 *~*

Xena was all ready for the wedding only an hour away. She was still at her mother’s house, waiting for the arrival of Joxer, Toris, Autolycus, Hercules, Iolaus, and Gabrielle’s family.

“Gabrielle, when is your family supposed to arrive?” Xena asked.

“They should have been here by now. Maybe--” Gabrielle began but she was interrupted by a knock on the door.

Cyrene opened it and Gabrielle’s family walked in.

“Mom! Dad! It’s good to see you again.” Gabrielle exclaimed. “It’s good to see you too, Lila.” She said, embracing them all in a loving huge.

When she stepped back, they all turned to see Xena in her glorious dress.

“Xena, you look so beautiful.” Hecuba said.

“Thank you.” Xena replied.

“We’d better get going. After all, you don’t want to be late to your wedding now do you?” Cyrene told her.

“Of course not, Mother. Of course not.” Xena laughed as they all walked out the door.

Once outside, they saw Joxer, Hercules, Iolaus, Toris, and Autolycus walking towards the house. Xena walked up to them.

“It’s good to see you guys again.”

While everyone greeted one another, Gabrielle looked up into the sky and saw a bright light coming towards them. Gabrielle walked over to Xena and taped her on the shoulder.

“Xena, look.”

Xena looked into the sky where Gabrielle was pointing.

“What is that?” Gabrielle wondered.

“I have no idea.” Xena replied, just as confused as everyone else.

They watched as the light came towards them. As the light came closer, the two of them began to realize that it was a golden chariot of fire led by four horses, their manes and tails streaming like fire. It came down from the sky like lightning, finally landing with such force that the ground shook.

Everyone stood in awe at the stunning chariot before them. A man dressed in gleaming gold and jewels that commanded the mighty steeds stood up and looked down at the amazed spectators.

“Ares has requested that I take you to Olympus. Xena and company…your chariot awaits.”

“Who are you?” Autolycus asked.

“I am Helios, lord and ruler of the sun. I believe we have a wedding to get too. Shall we?” He said, kindly.

Xena smiled and looked at her friends and family. “Let’s go.” She said as they all climbed into the chariot.

Once they were aboard, Helios grabbed the reins and the horses took off for Olympus, leaving a trial of fire behind them.

*~* Chapter 4 *~*

When they arrived on Olympus, Helios escorted them inside. When they entered, a short, golden haired woman dressed in golden armor greeted Xena.

“You must be Athena.”

Athena nodded. “Come with me, Xena.”

Xena followed the warrior goddess as she led her into the room where the wedding would take place. Gabrielle and the others followed behind them.

The walls of the room were studded with precious gems and the room was filled with sunlight entering in though the many windows. A long, red velvet rug sprinkled with rose pedals stretched from one end of the room to the other.

Every god and goddess was there, standing on either side of the aisle. Hades had allowed Marcus, Solan, and Lyceus to come up from the Underworld so that they could be part of the joyous event. Gabrielle and her friends and family joined the crowd as Cyrene stood by her daughter’s side.

“Ready?” Cyrene asked.

“Ready as I’ll ever be.” Xena replied.

Xena looked up and at the end of the long aisle was Ares, looking more handsome than ever.

The crowd was silent as Xena slowly walked towards the alter. Her mind was racing a mile a minute. She thought about the past, the present, and most importantly, about her future with Ares. She knew now that she wanted to become immortal and live with Ares forever and she knew a way for Gabrielle to live out her life without being lonely.

Finally, Xena reached the alter and Cyrene stepped back. Ares stood facing her, holding her hands lovingly. Cupid was to conduct the ceremony. He stood behind the alter and looked out over the entire hall.

“Today we celebrate a union between two people. A god and a mortal will be untitled today and they will forever be connected.” Cupid looked at Ares. “Do you, Ares, God of War take Xena to be your loving wife whom you will cherish always and whom you will take care of in times of need?”

“I do.”

“And do you, Xena take Ares to be your husband whom you will cherish always and whom you will take care of in times of need?”

“I do.”

Ares lifted Xena’s hand and slipped a small silver ring onto her finger.

“Then I pronounce you husband and wife.” Cupid finished.

Ares leaned into Xena and kissed her passionately as the crowd cheered. When they parted, Zeus looked at all the people in the room.

“Now, it’s time to party. Come on, people, let’s have some fun!”

The Muses appeared and began to sing and play music as everyone started to dance. A giant banquet table appeared in the aisle filled with food of all kinds and wine. Ares looked at Xena.

“I have something to give to you, Xena.” Ares opened his hand and in it appeared ambrosia. “Now, we will be together for eternity.” He said.

“Oh, Ares…yes. I want to be with you as long as I live but there’s something you have to do for Gabrielle.”

“What?”

Xena leaned in and whispered something in his ear.

“Xena, I don’t know if I can get Hades to agree to that.”

“Ares, he owes you a favor for saving all the Olympians form Hope and Dahak. I think he will understand.”

“All right, Xena. I’ll talk to him.”

“Good.”

Xena took the ambrosia from Ares’ hand and put it in her mouth. She began to feel like she’d never felt before. A blue light began to glow from within her, leaving her body for all to see. When it faded she could feel a difference within her soul. Ares smiled at her.

“You’re a god now, Xena and I’ll think you’ll enjoy it.”

“Now, I’ll be able to help people in ways I never thought I could before.”

“I’m going to talk to Hades now. Hopefully he will agree to what you are asking. I’ll be back soon.” Ares kissed her on the cheek before disappearing.

“Xena, I am sooooooo happy for you. I’m just bursting with joy! You’re the best thing that has happened to Ares. I hope you too will be happy together.” The Goddess of Love exclaimed walking over to Xena.

“Yes, we will be very happy together now that…” Xena stopped short for a moment, smiling at Aphrodite. “…I will be with him for eternity.”

Aphrodite’s eyes widened and she squealed with joy. “Oh, he gave you ambrosia! So, now you’re a god.” She put her arm around Xena. “It will be so fun to have you around all the time. You’ll love it here.”

“You’re a good friend, Aphrodite.”

Aphrodite giggled and then disappeared. When she had left, Xena walked down to where her friends where standing.

“Congratulations, Xena. You’ve changed Ares for the better.” Hercules said.

“Yeah, you two will make a wonderful couple.” Iolaus said.

“But won’t you feel regret when you die and leave Ares all alone?” Toris asked.

Xena didn’t answer. She grinned at Gabrielle who soon figured out what Xena had done.

“Ares gave you ambrosia, didn’t he?” Xena nodded her head. “So, you’re a god now. How does it feel?” Gabrielle asked.

“Well, to tell you the truth, it feels pretty good. And just think, now helping people will be easier than I ever thought but I will miss our travels together.”

“It’s like I said before, Xena. If you’re happy then I’ll be happy. It will just take some getting used to. You know, not having you around all the time.”

Xena glanced over to the other side of the room to see Ares. He winked at her as if she had gotten what she’d asked for. She turned back at Gabrielle.

“I just wish you had someone to be with so that you aren’t alone.”

“She has someone.” Replied a familiar voice.

Gabrielle looked behind Xena and saw Perdicus standing there. Gabrielle ran up to him and enfolded him in a huge that held a thousand memories.

“I thought that I would never see you again. I love you so much.” She cried.

Ares appeared next to Xena and they watched as Gabrielle was reunited with her lost love. When Gabrielle had dried her eyes she looked at Perdicus in wonder.

“How is this possible?”

“I asked Hades to bring him back for you. Well, actually, it was Xena’s idea.” Ares replied. “He has another chance at life so live it well.”

“Thank you both. Thank you so much.” Gabrielle replied before kissing him with much love.

Xena sighed. “What do we do now?” She asked Ares.

He grinned that unmistakable gin of his. “Oh, I think we can think of SOMETHING to do. After all, it is our wedding day.”

Xena leaned against him briefly but then something amazing caught her eye. She walked around Ares to see Solan, Lyceus, and Marcus standing beside the wall.

“Solan…is that you?”

Xena ran up to her child and hugged him. She could not believe that he was there.

“I love you, Mother.” He said.

“I know. I love you too. I wish I had been there to see you grow.” She cried.

When she let him go, she walked over to her brother.

“Lyceus, I thought I would never see you again. I’ve missed you so much.”

“I’ve missed you too, Xena, but don’t blame yourself for my death. No matter what, I would have fought against Cortese even if you hadn’t encouraged me. It’s not your fault that I was killed.”

“I just wish I had been able to do something to save you.”

Xena hugged him tightly and then looked at Marcus, tears beginning to build in her eyes. Ares walked next to her.

“Macrus, I--”

“It’s okay. You don’t have to explain anything to me. You love Ares, I see that and I am not angry with you for loving another man.”

“There will always be a place in my heart for you, Marcus no matter how much I love Ares. You were my first love and that will always hold special meaning for me.”

Marcus softly kissed her cheek. “I will always love you, Xena. You saved me from myself by showing me that there was goodness within my heart, even if it had to be at the very end of my life. Good luck with Ares.”

“Thank you.”

Xena turned around to see Ares standing beside her.

“Come, my love. Let’s go somewhere where we can get a little more…privacy.” She grinned.

“You read my mind, my sweet.” He replied before taking her hand and disappearing.

*~* Chapter 5 *~*

Xena and Ares appeared in his bedchamber. The room was dark except for candles that were in the walls. The bed was covered with black silk, thin black fabric was hanging down from the ceiling on both sides of the bed. There was a small table near the bed with two goblets of wine. Ares walked over to it and picked them up. Xena walked over and took one from him.

“To you, my dear. For a happy and wonderful life together.” He said clanking the goblet together with hers.

Xena took a sip and then put it back on the table. She smiled at Ares seductively.

“I think I’ll change into something more comfortable.” She said as she walked through a curtain of beads into the next room.

Ares set his wine glass on the table as well and then took off his vest. He lay down on the bed, looking in the direction that Xena had walked.

When she appeared in a flash of sparkling blue light, Ares was in awe. She wore a short white silk dress that barely reached her knees. The shoulder stapes were quiet thin and her raven hair flowed across her back and over her shoulders with such grace. She made her way over to Ares and lay next to him, staring deep into his eyes. Her eyes sparkled like never before.

“You look…so beautiful, my dear.” Ares said tenderly, stroking her arm.

“Why thank you, my lord. You don’t look so bad yourself.” She cooed.

The light from the candles danced off of her black hair and as Ares looked at her, he seemed to fall deep into her crystal orbs. He was transfixed. Xena leaned forward and began to kiss him. He wrapped his arms around her as they sank deep into a pool of passion.

*~* Chapter 6 *~*

Hours later, Xena and Ares were still in each other’s arms. Ares lay against the headboard of the bed while Xena rested her head on his chest. Ares ran his fingers through her soft hair as Xena closed her eyes.

“Hmm.” She breathed. “This feels like heaven.”

“Heaven…was never like this.” He replied, kissing her on the forehead.

Xena sighed contently and sat up. She looked at Ares, and grinned evilly.

“Ares, are you ready to have some fun?” She purred.

Xena stood up and snapped her fingers. Her dress suddenly transformed into her usual leather outfit and armor, her chakram hanging at her side and her sword on her back. She looked at Ares, an evil twinkle in her eye. Ares could see what she was up to and he too grinned as he stood.

“Come on, Ares. Don’t keep me waiting.” She laughed, disappearing out of sight.

Xena appeared at a calm lake in the forest next to a waterfall. The sky was dark; the only source of light was the full moon and a sky littered with stars. The cool night air swept through the trees, causing the leaves to sway back and fourth.

Xena walked to the edge of the lake and looked around. All she could hear was the sound of crickets and the low hooting from an owl in the tree above her. It was strange to her that she wasn’t cold; immortality didn’t allow her to get cold or hungry or tired. It was wonderful knowing that everything she had to deal with as a mortal no longer applied.

Suddenly, Xena sheathed her sword and quickly turned around, swinging it in the air to meet Ares’ sword as he appeared behind her. His irresistible grin swept across his face.

“I wondered when you would get here. I was getting bored.” Xena growled excitedly.

Ares was once again dressed in his traditional leather vest, looking as magnificent as ever. The small silver sword earring hanging from his left ear sparkled in the moonlight. He chuckled before the two began their swordplay. Ares swung at Xena, but before he had any time to hit her, she preformed a magnificent back flip over him, yelling at the top of her lungs. Ares jolted around and swung again, this time meeting her sword.

Sparks flew in all directions; the sound of metal hitting metal could be heard for miles. Ares always enjoyed an all out battle of strength and wits and Xena seemed to be the only on who was ever capable of giving it to him. Xena stood a few paces away from him and threw a ball of fire at him. He caught it and it crackled and disintegrated in his hand.

“Oh, you’re good, Xena. But when it comes to physical punishment, I invented the art. You may be immortal, but I’m still the God of War! You’ll never be better than I am.”

Ares swung at her once again but as he did so she knocked him off his feet and he fell to the hard ground. Xena rushed over to him and stood above him, pointing the sword at his chest.

“You were saying.” She smirked.

Ares reached up and firmly grabbed her arms pulling her towards him so that they were nose to nose.

“Boy, do I love it when you’ve got that fire in your eyes.” He growled, pulling her into a kiss.

Xena threw her sword to the side and moved her hands up and down his body, never having felt so alive in all her life. Soon they parted and stood.

“I’m so glad I married you, Ares. I can’t wait to start a family with you.”

“A family?” Ares asked, a little surprised.

“Of course, silly.” Xena replied running her hand through his hair as they disappeared into the night.

PART III: Bound For Life

*~* Chapter 1 *~*

It had been almost three months since their wedding. They were having a wonderful life together but Ares was beginning to notice a difference in his Warrior Princess. Xena had been acting strange for about a month now--feeling sick in the morning, always feeling tired, unusually cranky--which was very unusual because gods never got sick. Well, there were very rare instances that an unusual virus would go around that only gods could catch but Ares didn’t believe that was the case because he remembered having that virus when he was a teenager. She was acting nothing like what he remembered.

Xena, being the stubborn one that she was, refused to admit that there was anything wrong with her. Most of the time, she tried to hide it but she was not always able to. Fortunately, it was only Ares that seemed to realize that something was wrong. She did not want any of the other gods fusing over her; she hated to show that she was weak. Ares had decided to take her too Apollo, who was skilled in the art of healing. Hopefully, he could find out what was wrong with his beloved.

“Ares, I don’t need to see a healer! I’m fine. Really.” Xena said, stubbornly.

“My, gosh, Xena, he’s not going to hurt you. I just want to find out what is wrong, my love. If it turns out that nothing is wrong then…then you have my permission to kill me.”

“You can’t die.” She challenged, giving him ‘the look’.

“That’s not the point. Just come with me.” Ares replied impatiently; she was beginning to get on his nerves.

Ares led Xena from their room down the hallway to Apollo’s chambers. He knocked on the large double doors.

“Apollo! It’s Ares! I’m here with Xena! Could we speak with you for a moment?!”

There was silence for a moment and then the doors opened. Apollo stood at the doorway.

“Xena. Ares. Come on in.”

Apollo stepped back from the door as Xena and Ares walked in. The room was bright, light shown in through three very large windows on the west wall. Apollo gestured for Xena and Ares to sit down on a white cushioned couch below the windows. They did so and then Apollo sat down in a chair in front of them.

“What is it that you wanted to talk to me about?”

“Well, I was wondering if you could look over Xena. She hasn’t been feeling well for awhile now and I was just wondering if you could check her out.” Ares replied.

“Ares, when you put it that way, it makes it sound like I’m dying or something! This is ridiculous.” Xena snapped as she stood up and headed for the door but before she had any time to go anywhere, Ares grabbed her arm and pulled her back into her seat.

“You’re not going anywhere, Xena. Just give it a chance.” Ares said, calmly stroking her arm.

Xena huffed as Apollo walked over to her.

“It’s very unusual that an immortal would get sick but I have heard of it. How do you feel?”

Xena briefly glared at Ares before speaking.

“I feel fine now, it’s just sometimes in the mornings I don’t feel that well. Some days I feel very tired and other days I feel completely fine. It’s off and on.”

“How long has it been going on?”

“Oh, for probably about a month but it has become the most noticeable since a few days ago.”

“Well, lets see what’s wrong, shall we?” Apollo smiled.

Xena rolled her eyes as Apollo lifted his hands above her head. Being a god, there was no need for tools and fancy gadgets to check to see what was wrong; he could just sense what was wrong using his powers. Apollo closed his eyes as a yellow mist glowed all around Xena. Ares and Xena both were astonished at what he was doing. How was this going to help him figure out what is wrong? Xena wondered.

When the light faded and Apollo opened his eyes, he looked at them with a big smile on his face.

“Congratulations, Xena. You’re going to be a mother.”

Xena’s mouth gaped wide open. She looked at Ares who too, was very surprised and then back at Apollo in wonder.

“A ba-baby? I’m pregnant? But…” She stuttered.

Xena was too much in shock to say any more. Once Ares had come back to reality and realized to the fullest what had happened, he began to smile at Xena joyfully.

“Oh, Xena. We’re going to have a child, our first child. Isn’t that wonderful?!”

Xena couldn’t speak. Instead she just looked at Ares in wonder. Ares picked Xena up in his arms and carried her to the door.

“Thank you for all your help, Apollo.”

“Any time.” He replied.

Ares opened the door and walked out, still holding Xena in his arms.

*~* Chapter 2 *~*

Early the next morning, Xena was in their bedchamber, standing at a window looking out over the beautiful landscape. She closed her eyes to feel a warm breeze blow through her hair and when she opened them she found Ares next to her.

“Good morning, Xena. Did you sleep well?”

“Yes.”

Ares too looked out the window. “What are you looking at, my dear?”

“Nothing. I was just thinking about the future; about our child and how it is going to affect our lives.”

“Yeah, I’ve been thinking about that too.” Ares replied putting his arm around her shoulder. “Are you excited?”

Xena smiled. “Yes, but it has been a while since I’ve had a child. This will be the first time that I will actually have a chance to raise the child myself. Solan never had a real mother, I was never there for him and I am going to make sure that I will be there for this child.”

“Xena, I’m so sorry about Solan. I know how much you loved him.”

“Yeah, I’m sorry too. But that’s just how life goes, you know?” Xena leaned her head against Ares. “I hope we have a girl. I’ve always wanted a girl.” Xena said closing her eyes for a moment. When she opened her eyes, she walked over to the closet and retrieved her armor. “I’m going to tell Gabrielle and my mother the good news. I wonder how she and Perdicus are doing. I can’t wait to see them. I hope there happy.” Xena told him as she put on her armor and grabbed her weapons. “Are you coming?”

“Xena, oh I’d like to but I have some very important business to attend to. You know, the God of War has responsibilities--unfortunately. I’ll be in my temple in Amphipolis if you need me.” Ares told her before disappearing.

“Oh well.” Xena said as she too disappeared.

*~* Chapter 3 *~*

Xena materialized in Potidaea. She was pretty sure that Gabrielle would make her home there but she wasn’t positive, she hadn’t seen Gabrielle since the wedding. Xena walked into town. In the middle of the square there was a gang of men surrounding a young girl who looked to be about 17. She seemed very frightened.

“Come on, baby, just one kiss. I promise I won’t bit.” One of the men said, tugging on the girl’s cloths.

“Stay away from me or I’ll--”

“You’ll what? Huh? What is a little thing like you going to do to us?”

“SHE’LL do nothing. But I will!” Xena shouted from across the street.

“It’s Xena, the Warrior Princess! Run!!” One of the men shouted.

“Oh, I’m MORE than a Warrior Princess. Now I’m a GOD.” She said as she sent charges of lightning into they’re backsides as they ran off like little babies.

Xena ran over to the girl once the men left.

“Are you all right?”

“Yes, I’m fine. Thanks to you.”

“No problem.”

“Wait. ‘Xena?’ I recognize that name. Oh, I know. You’re the one Gabrielle is always going on about. She’s told me all about your adventures together. Like the time you and Hercules freed Prometheus from the clutches of Hera or the time you helped Ares get his godhood back when his sword was stolen. You’re a legend, Xena. Although, there is nothing about the great Xena being a god.”

“Well, that’s sort of recent. So, you know Gabrielle pretty well, huh?”

“I should. I’m her cousin.”

“Then you know where I could find her?”

“Yeah, come with me.”

They started off down the road when Xena stopped her.

“By the way, what is your name?”

“Where are my manners? My name is Aurora.”

“Nice to meet you, Aurora.”

Aurora smiled at Xena as she led her down the road. They soon came to a small little cottage. Gabrielle was outside, tending to a garden of flowers. Xena walked up behind her.

“How’s it going…friend?”

Gabrielle turned around to see the blue-eyed warrior before her.

“Xena!” She exclaimed, hugging her briefly. “It’s so good to see you.”

“It’s great to see you too, Gabrielle.”

“So, how have you been? You know, as a god and all? Is it exciting?”

“Well, I wouldn’t exactly say ‘exciting’. It’s not much different than here on earth other than I can live forever, of course.”

“Of course.” Gabrielle chuckled.

“So, how’s Perdicus? Is he well?”

“Yes, he’s doing great. I’m so glad that I have another chance with him. I love him so much.”

“I bet you do.”

“We’re hoping to start a family sometime soon.”

Xena smiled when she heard the word ‘family’.

“Speaking of that...” Xena paused before continuing. “Gabrielle, Ares and I are going to have a child.”

“Really? Xena, that’s great. I’m so happy for you. When is the baby due?”

“In about six months.” Xena replied.

“Well, just tell me when it arrives.”

“I will.”

Suddenly Perdicus walked out of the house.

“Perdicus, my darling. You won’t believe it. Xena’s going to have a baby.” Gabrielle told him.

“That’s wonderful, Xena. Congratulations. You’ll make a wonderful mom.”

“I hope so.” Xena said smiling at her friend. “Gabrielle, I’ve got to get going. My mother doesn’t know yet and you know how she always wants to be informed about everything. See you later.”

“Bye, Xena. Come back soon.” Gabrielle said as Xena disappeared.

*~* Chapter 4 *~*

Xena appeared in Amphipolis at her mother’s house. Xena walked up to the door and went inside. Her mother was washing dishes.

“Mother.”

Cyrene turned around.

“Xena, how I’ve missed you.” She said hugging the Warrior Princess. “What brings you here? Have you just come to see your mother or is there something else on your mind?”

“Actually, Mom, there is something else. I’m going to have a baby.”

“Xena, that’s fantastic. Congratulations. When is it due?”

“In about six months.”

“You just make sure to tell your mother when the child arrives, agreed?”

“I will, Mom. I will. Listen, I’ve got to get going.”

“No problem. Far be it for me to stand in your way.”

“Thanks, Mother. See you soon.”

“Bye, Xena.” Cyrene replied as Xena disappeared.

*~* Chapter 5 *~*

Soon Xena appeared at Ares’ temple. She opened the large doors and was greeted by a tall brown haired woman in a green dress. She had the emblem of Ares on her left forearm.

“Why, milady Xena. What a surprise. If you’re looking for Ares, he’s in his chambers at the moment. Come with me.”

The priestess escorted Xena to the end of the temple where there was a set of locked doors. She took out a key and unlocked them. Xena followed her as they walked down a long circular stairway that led deep into the ground. On the walls, Xena saw large murals depicting great battle scenes--the Battle of Corinth, the Peloponnesian War, and one she could never forget, the battle she led against Cortese so many years ago when he attacked her home.

When they reached the end of the stairs, the priestess led Xena into a large room glowing with candles. It was an awfully dreary room but what did you expect from the room of a war god? Ares was bending over a large table, looking over a bunch of maps.

“Lord Ares, Xena is here to see you.”

Ares looked up and smiled at Xena.

“Thank you, Saira. You may return to your duties.”

“Yes, milord.” Saria replied, bowing to her master before exiting the room.

Xena walked over to Ares.

“What are you doing?”

“Oh, I’m just trying to figure out where the best place for the war I have going should be. That’s all.”

“Starting wars again, Ares. I thought you’d changed.”

“Xena, I can’t help who I am. You know the world needs the God of War. Without me, the world would be in a state of chaos. Besides, the war I’m starting is between two groups of bloodthirsty warlords who do not care about anyone but themselves. I’ll be doing Greece a favor by getting rid of a bunch of destructive warlords. Isn’t that what you fought against?”

“Yes. Thank you for trying to help Greece instead of trying to destroy it.”

Xena walked beside him and kissed him on the cheek. Ares put his arm around Xena and they walked over to a couch to sit down.

“So, did you tell your family about our child?” Ares asked.

“Yes, they’re overjoyed. When the baby arrives, I’ve got to make sure that they see it.”

“It will be a site to behold, won’t it?”

“Yes, our child will be so wonderful.” Xena leaned over and hugged him. “I love you so much, Ares.”

“I love you too.”

*~* Chapter 6 *~*

Many months past and by now, Xena was heavily pregnant. She and Ares were spending the day on a cliff that overlooked the Aegean Sea. It was a bright, sunny day but the air was fairly cool. They were standing together looking out over the water that shimmered in the sunlight.

“Isn’t it beautiful, Ares? The scenery?”

“It is, my dear. I never used to be one to just stand and look at the scenery, at the simple things in life. But it’s different now, I’m different now.”

“Because of me?”

“Yes, because of you. Xena, you’ve changed me. You’ve opened my eyes and you’ve changed me the way that Gabrielle had changed you from your days as a ruthless warrior. You taught me to love.”

Suddenly, Xena stepped back looking as if she were a little uncomfortable.

“Are you all right?” Ares asked.

“I think it’s time, Ares.”

“You mean…?”

“Yes.”

“Well then, let’s get you back to Olympus. Come on.” Ares said taking her arm as the disappeared.

*~* Chapter 7 *~*

Ares and Xena arrived on Olympus only moments later. Ares took Xena to Apollo’s chambers. He opened the doors and walked in.

“Apollo, it’s time.” Ares said, helping Xena in.

Apollo walked over to them as Aphrodite appeared.

“Is it time? Oh, I am so excited.” Aphrodite said, expressing her joy.

“Come with me, Xena.”

Apollo opened a small door on the other side of the room and led Xena inside. Aphrodite followed them since she was going to help with the birth. Ares watched as they left. He walked out of the room and then disappeared.

Ares materialized at Gabrielle’s house. Gabrielle and Perdicus were sitting by a lake. He walked up to them.

“Gabrielle, Xena is about to have her baby and she would like you to be there.”

“Come on, honey. A child is about to be born.” Gabrielle told Perdicus as they took Ares hand. He zapped them back to Olympus before disappearing himself.

In Amphipolis, Cyrene was in her tavern serving a group of people when Ares appeared.

“Xena wishes you to be present when our child is born.”

“So, it’s time then?”

Ares nodded his head. Cyrene turned to a tall women standing next to her.

“Amoria, take care of the tavern while I’m gone.”

Before Amoria had time to question, Cyrene and Ares were gone.

Back on Olympus, Ares led Cyrene towards Apollo’s chambers where he found Gabrielle and Perdicus waiting inside the room.

“Is the child not here yet?” He asked.

“No.” Gabrielle replied.

Ares walked over to a chair and sat down. He sighed. Gabrielle looked at him to see the nervousness in his eyes, as any soon-to-be-father should have.

Finally, after what seemed like a lifetime to Ares but in truth, was only about thirty minutes, Aphrodite came out of the small room. In her arms she carried not one but two babies. She walked up to Ares who was standing up from the chair.

“Congratulations, Ares. You’re the father of two beautiful daughters.” Aphrodite smiled.

“Twins? Xena had twins?” Gabrielle said, slightly surprised.

Gabrielle, Perdicus, and Cyrene walked over to Aphrodite. Ares removed the cloth that covered their faces and looked into their eyes.

“There…so beautiful.” He said under his breath. Aphrodite gently handed him his children. Ares took them in his arms and a tear fell from his eye. “I can’t believe they’re mine. They’re so perfect.”

Soon Apollo came out of the room. “You can see her now, Ares.”

Ares looked up at Apollo and then walked into the small room, carrying the twins in his hands. When he entered, he saw Xena lying on a small bed.

“Ares, my love.” She replied, a little weak.

Ares walked up to her and knelt down beside the bed, showing her their children. “Twins. I can’t believe it.”

Xena looked at them as they cooed. “Girls. I was hoping for one but I never would have expected two.”

“Xena, look. They have your eyes; your perfect blue eyes.”

“And their hair is as black as midnight. They are just like us.” She replied.

“What are we going to call them?”

“What about Anya and…Ilea. I’ve always liked those names.”

“Those are beautiful names, Xena. Anya and Ilea. I like that.”

Then Ares kissed Xena. “I love you.”

“I love you too.” Xena replied, joining their lips once more.

*~* Epilogue *~*

A few years after the twins were born Gabrielle and Perdicus finally had their first a child, a boy they named Tyro, and then shortly after that they had a girl named Rhea. Xena would visit her friend every chance she got and they would exchange stories, telling each other about their lives. Gabrielle and Xena would occasionally go out and help those in need like they had once done but most of the time, they were at home with their families.

The years past and Xena and Ares watched as Anya and Ilea grew into beautiful young goddesses. They were taught to be great warriors just like their mother and father but they were made to promise that they would never use their powers for evil; that they would only use them for the Greater Good.

There were times that the children got into some kind of trouble or didn’t obey their parents, as all children will, but for the most part, Anya and Ilea were well respected by all gods and mortals alike. Anya and Ilea became known as the Immortal Twins and became so popular that on their 18 birthday, they had their first temple erected in their name and a line of priests and priestesses waiting to serve them.

Ares and Xena were so proud of their children. Ares had become a great father, much to his surprise. Xena, however, was not at all surprised, for she knew that deep within Ares’ heart there was a fire of goodness that had started to burn long before Xena ever fell in love with him. Xena knew, as well as he did, that if she had not come along and taught the God of War how to love, he would not be the same man that he is today. To this day, it proved the fact that good is stronger than evil and that war CAN indeed be conquered by love.

THE END

Back