DISCLAIMER: The characters borrowed from the best TV show ever are subject to copyright. No infringement intended. This story contains no sex or violence. As ever ALL comments appreciated.
A CONVERSATION IN THE ELYSIAN FIELDS
The man clutched his side and winced. But there was no pain, no wound. He seemed confused, disorientated.
A tall, handsome, man with ebony skin and ivory teeth smiled.
"Take it easy my friend, you will soon get used to it."
"To death you mean. I am dead, right?"
"I am Marcus, I have been assigned to help you through the transition. Yes, you are dead. But in Elysia, not Tartarus" the black man studied his new charge.
"Perdicus" the new arrival offered his hand "pleased to meet you, I guess"
"You will adapt soon, things are pretty good here. Trust me" Marcus gave a reassuring smile.
Perdicus suddenly looked around, his face a mixture of horror and desperation.
"My wife! My wife! Oh! Poor Gabrielle!" he broke down.
Marcus became thoughtful, that was a familiar name. Still, there must be hundreds of Gabrielles throughout Greece.
"We were only just married! I was killed, murdered in cold blood the very next day" Perdicus wept openly.
Marcus gave his shoulder a comforting squeeze.
"Wait a moment!" the new arrival said "We used to have this saying when the living think of the dead, the dead can hear their thoughts is that true?"
"If they loved each other, then yes, it is true" smiled Marcus.
"Then I will hear Gabrielle!!" Perdicus was elated. He suddenly became angry. "Why cant I hear her?" he shouted.
"Take it easy, friend. You still have yet to adjust, these things take time" Marcus had a calming tone.
"You know I was in love with a woman. A glorious woman called Xena. After I died, I heard her thoughts, it was truly a comfort to me" he smiled.
"Xena?!" exclaimed Perdicus, "but I know, sorry knew Xena. She was Gabrielles best friend"
Marcus nodded. "Gabrielle, yes I met her once. So tell me, how did Xena die?"
Perdicus looked surprised. "Xenas not dead! At least ."
"She must be" replied the black skinned man "you see I no longer hear her thoughts. She must have died and gone to Tartarus. It is the only explanation. Alas she is not here. Her evil past "
"For how long has she stopped thinking of you?" asked the curious Perdicus.
"A long time since" Marcus was sorrowful
"But she was alive yesterday! I saw her. Or is that today? Im confused, how long have I been dead?" asked the pallid man.
Getting an audience with Hades had not been easy. But both men were determined. A week later, the meeting was arranged.
"Some things are better left unsaid, unheard, unknown" the deity cautioned.
"I want to hear Gabrielles thoughts!" Perdicus demanded, "it is my right!. When the living think of the dead and all that"
"And I want to know why I no longer hear Xena, if she is still alive as you claim" Marcus was equally vehement.
Hades looked unsure. He then shrugged. "Remember, the living and the dead have to love each other "
"I do love Xena! And she did, does love me!" Marcus was enraged.
Hades shook his head. "Im sorry, Marcus. I did try to warn you"
"What!" was all the handsome warrior could say.
"Xena did not love you. She thought she did, at the time. But then she discovered true love. There is quite a difference, believe me"
The deity wished to be kind. "that doesnt mean she doesnt remember you, but the love is gone. It never was a true love that would last"
"And I suppose this true love occupies her every moment? Her every dream? Her every thought?" Marcus sneered bitterly.
"Actually, yes" replied Hades. "Her love now IS eternal"
Meantime Perdicus was becoming impatient.
"I know Gabrielle was my true love! I was her first!" he beamed proudly.
Hades was hesitant. "Gabrielle has been thinking of you, but it seemed better to not let you hear"
Perdicus became livid. "I DEMAND to hear her thoughts!"
Hades did not care for his tone.
"I have a low threshold of sympathy. Very well"
An ethereal voice filled the room.
"Oh! Perdicus! Why did I marry you? I am truly sorry. I feel responsible for your death. Callisto would never have bothered with a simple soldier like you, if it hadnt been that you were my husband.
I did love you Perdicus, but in the way that I love many things.
I was never in love with you. Thank the Gods for Xena! We are so happy together, I cannot believe I nearly drove her away.
You were a good man, Im sure the Elysain Fields will be good for you, better than this cruel earth."
The voice faded.
"Xena?!" the two men spoke in surprised unison.
"Are you telling me that Gabrielle is Xenas true love?" asked Marcus.
Hades nodded. "An eternal love, a very rare thing"
Perdicus was in shock "I do not believe it"
Hades spoke with authority.
"Xena and Gabrielle have love eternal. It is their destiny".
"Destiny hah!" Marcus scoffed "You Gods and your games"
"A truly remarkable pair of women. You see it IS their destiny to be forever together, forever in love. Yet this destiny was not one shaped by the Gods." He paused, then smiled in admiration.
"They forged it for themselves"