Disclaimer: See Part 1
Authors Note: If you want to email me, my address is jacklavigne13@hotmail .com
I vaguely remember thinking that all of our little meetings ended up with one of us running away, as I entered the Queen's hut. I felt emotionally exhausted as I sat down on my large bed, dropping my face into my upturned hands. What had I done? I had the perfect moment to tell Xena the truth; that I still wanted to be with her, but instead I ran away in tears like a child.
It would have been so easy to lean over and kiss her after confessing to her that I didn't love Miranda. I could see that she wanted to as she glanced between my eyes and my lips as she looked at me. Her love for me burned so brightly in her ocean blue eyes, as it did every time she saw me. I could tell she still desired me, even after everything. I could see it every time I met her gaze, and in the way she licked her lips while staring at my body when she thought I wasn't looking. It sends a shock of desire through me every time, to know that she still finds me attractive, even though I belong to someone else now.
It had hurt so much, wanting her and knowing that I couldn't have her, all because of one giant mistake. And the mistake wasn't even hers this time, it was mine. If I hadn't accepted Miranda's proposal, then Xena and I would be together. Maybe not now, but in the future we would have found each other again. Our bond is too strong to keep away from one another. But now, there were even more issues between us, issues that created a space between us that I didn't know how to cross.
I tried to console myself with reasoning, that it wasn't all completely my fault. If Xena hadn't started falling for Antony in the first place, then we wouldn't be in this mess. We would still be roaming the country side, fighting evil and saving innocents. Or maybe, we would have settled down together in that house that Xena lived in now with Eve, when she wasn't on a mission. We would still be together if she had been faithful to me.
In my heart, I knew that I was lying to myself. Even before Antony came along, we were having problems. All the Roman did was finally push me past my endurance level. We have both been unfaithful to one another in the past, though her more often than I. I even married Perdicus, only weeks after we first made love and I knew it broke her heart. I remember seeing her face when I turned back to look at her as I left the temple, hand in hand with my new husband. I remember watching as her face crumpled in agony, the first tear slipping from her eyes as I turned away. We both knew that back then it was more out of guilt than anything on my part. Guilt at leaving him in the first place to follow Xena, and guilt for unintentionally setting him on a path that had scarred him so badly. I betrayed her, but we worked through it; we always worked through it in the end.
But after the stress of Xena getting pregnant and then having Eve, along with fighting the Olympian Gods, I started to forget all the reasons that I was with Xena in the first place. Especially when I saw her in Antony's arms, kissing his lips and giving him the love that should have been mine. I started to forget how she made me feel when I was in her arms, kissing her lips and receiving her love.
But none of that mattered to me anymore.
Ever since she stepped onto Amazon land to attend my wedding, all of that stopped mattering. All that mattered was that she had come for me. Whether she came to support me, or to steal me away, it didn't matter. She was here and that's all I cared about.
All I care about is her and the life that I could still imagine for us. Because I still love her and that will never change. We are meant to be together.
Gods, what am I still doing here?
It's really becoming a problem, how we always run away and hide from one another. I can't blame her, especially with how I've treated her since we first met all those years ago. When we first made love, it was the most perfect moment of my life and I thought that we would always be together from that day on. But then she married Perdicus, out of guilt I know, but it changed everything, for me, at least.
I've always had trust issues, but that was the first real time that I didn't know if I could trust Gabrielle with my heart. She destroyed me when she left that temple, and even though she was returned to me, I was still hurting. I guess that's why I turned to Ulysses when I met him. Even though Gabrielle and I had made amends over her ill-fated marriage, I had wanted to show her the pain that she had shown me. In the end, I left Ulysses in Ithaca and Gabrielle and I were together again, but something changed between us.
Whenever a problem came up, we always worked through it, but never completely. There was yelling and crying and in the end we said sorry, but there was always a little bit of residual anger left over. And after all of the years of that anger and resentment building up inside of her, Gabrielle finally broke when she saw me with Antony. Again, I can't blame her. There were few times when Gabrielle ever really strayed from my side after Perdicus, though I regretfully can't say the same for myself. I don't know why I kept hurting her, even after she had proved herself to me more times than I can remember.
Maybe I was scared that she would hurt me again. The sad thing is, in the end, I had just ended up hurting myself. I fucked up and pushed the love of my life too far and she left me; and that hurt more than anything.
I sat down heavily on my bedroll as I listened to her footsteps disappear, still wanting to run after her. I wanted to grab her by the shoulders and to shake some sense into her, to tell her that it wasn't too late. Even after she joins with Miranda, it still won't be too late. No amount of time or difficult situation will ever stop me from loving her, even if she is bonded to someone else through Amazon law. Because no matter what, my heart, my soul and my body will always belong to her; I will always belong to her .
I sighed as I ran my fingers through my dark hair, hardly noticing as the sun started to set. It was completely dark by the time I finally moved to put away the food that Gabrielle had brought me earlier. Only when I finally finished packing it all up did I notice the presence behind me.
I turned around swiftly, my hand reaching for my breast dagger as I berated myself for thinking so deeply that I didn't notice someone enter my camp. The thought left my mind instantly as I saw Gabrielle standing somewhat awkwardly behind me. Her fingers were fiddling with her short leather skirt as she looked up at me. I wanted to speak but the look in her eyes stopped me and I felt a shiver race down my spine as I let my hands drop to my sides.
"Gabrielle," I finally managed to whisper as she started walking towards me. Her steps were determined, though a little shaky. I could see her hands trembling as she raised them to my face, cupping my cheeks and running her thumbs along my skin.
"Artemis, forgive me," Gabrielle breathed before leaning up and pressing her lips against mine.
To Be Continued
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